Jack Afara emerged victorious in a hotly contested 2015 Nigeria Superbikes contest in Urhonigbe on Sunday, 28th November, 2015 The 2015 BT was a contest in every sense of the word as it witnessed more professional riders, race-tuned bikes and teams.The race saw a parked out crowd that included Locals, Tourists/visitors, the Nigerian Motorbiking Clubs / community, enthusiasts, and various Media outfits as well as an appearance by Yamaha Factory Racing , Boulus Suzuki and the Premier Nigerian Motorbike Accessories Stores Metallic Horses and Argo Bike Showroom and RedBull Energy Drink
A step further from the previous edition, the 2015 Nigerian Superbikes Road Race featured 4 Categories which included; The 1000CC as the Premier class, the Above 1000CC, 600CC and the Pro 600 Series with a total of 25 riders across all classes ready to twist the throttle for first to cross the finish line
The race weekend started with an hour practice for the riders to get themselves and their bikes acquainted to the track that features high speed flybys and long radius fast and unforgiving bends.
After the arrival of the Riders and their teams, 10:23AM saw the Riders setting out to the track in the sweltering heat of the Urhonigbe plains. With the heat, traction was easy to come by so the riders did not have to push hard to work their tyres to attain the maximum grip level needed to be the first to take the checkered flag at the end of the 32 Kilometers distance race circuit
Barely 10 Minutes into the practice, it was reported that five riders had crashed while practicing and were flown immediately to the Circuit Clinic for immediate and proper medical attention. This reduced the the time for practice and further extended race time as the riders were called in by the Race Direction for a brief debriefing on safety before the main race kick started 30 minutes later the track was cleared and it was then down to the guy on the bike against the road, racing himself and fellow competitors against time, mind over matter.
The defending Champion sure was the rider with the most pressure as the 24 riders were all up against him but being a champion, Jack ‘Air Bender’ Afara played calm and collected treating the situation as as a true Champion that he is would. His main rivals Ime Peters and Blow who was last season’s first runner up aboard the same model of his Yamaha R1 couldn’t turn a wheel due to mechanical issues. Ime Peter’s R1 would ‘jump timing’ while Blow’s clutch fibers were burnt and Crank had earlier blew up his own R1 engine forcing the two heavy weights and the rookie to an obvious and painful Did Not Finish (DNF).
Jack’s most outspoken rival and everybody’s favorite David ‘D-Brown’ had earlier crashed and damaged his highly race-tuned and race ready BMW S1000RR. With all these one could tell that all the the race forces were in Air Bender’s favor.
With Over an hour time of Riders pushing their bikes to the limit and looking for some extra speed to conquer the 32Km circuit that spans eight communities (Urhonigbe, Urohmehe, Umughun, Ogba, Evbonogbon, Ugo, Ekpokpor and Ugbokirima all in Orhiomwon LGA in Edo State) in less than 11 minutes, Jack ‘Air Bender’ Afara emerged the winner of the premier class and second fastest overall with just 17 seconds behind Argo aboard the Suzuki BKing who posted a fastest time of 10:11s to win the Above 1000CC Category
With Jack Afara’a victory in the Premier class (1000CC), he successfully defended his 2014 tittle and became the first ever rider to secure a back to back Nigeria Superbikes Championship title Air Bender shared the Podium with Ahmed Alpacino who posted a time of 10.42s aboard the GSX-R750 just 12 seconds ahead of MO Ducati in 3rd riding the GSX-R1000
Argo further drew the line that cemented the indisputable raw speed of the Yoshimura Suzuki engines posting a 10.11s to earn himself the bragging rights of the fastest head around the 32Km circuit with his Suzuki 1300CC BKing Ralph I-Rider came second aboard his Kawaski ZX14 with a 4 seconds advantage over Darlington 11:1s to proof that only the Japanese engines has the top end speed as they dominated the Above 1000CC Category
The 600CC class had three ladies on the podium; Ore Dot 1st after posting a 15:23s ahead of Jeminat SpeedDiva 15:31 in 2nd with the former 250CC Champion Kelly ‘Kelz Mama’ Jumbo completing the last step of the 2015 Nigeria Superbikes Road Race rostrum
Nonetheless each class had a fair share of DNFs with Rodney in the Above 1000CC, David ‘D’Brown in the 1000CC Premier Class as well as Randy in the 600CC category
Sama aboard the ZX10R had earlier been called onto the podium as the 3rd fastest in the premier class only for his 3rd place to be revoked and given to MO Ducati as the electronic timing chip attached to the former’s bike developed errors and delayed reading
MO Ducati posted a 10:54s to have a 6seconds advantage over Sama who finished 11 minutes on the dot
The MSCN (Motorcycle Sports Club of Nigeria) apologized to MO Ducati for the error that eluded him a shot at tasting the Champagne that woulda quenched his thirst and lubricated his lungs in the over 35 degrees ovenating temperature of Urhonigbe. MO Ducati was later announced the 3rd fastest aboard the GSX-R1000
All Photo credit to Argo Bike Showroom and MotoringNigeria.com