Gagne has been on fire in the hot conditions in Alton, Virginia, leading every session and breaking more track records aboard his Fresh N’ Lean Attack Performance Yamaha R1. Earlier in the day, he threw down a 1:23.594 on the 2.25-mile track to take his second-consecutive pole position and then backed that up with a flying start to grab the holeshot. From there, Gagne never looked back, setting the fastest lap of the race on Lap 2 and then stretched the gap to cross the finish line with an 11.8-second lead.
Herrin got off to a good start from the second row to match his qualifying position in fourth. He soon found himself in a three-rider battle that continued to heat up as the race wore on. Before the halfway mark, one of the frontrunners dropped back through the field, making it a fight for the final podium spot. Despite the pressure, Herrin was holding down third until five laps to go when he was passed on the inside and shuffled to fifth. He then lost a bit of ground on his competitors, but as their battle intensified, Herrin closed the gap back to within striking distance. The 2013 Superbike Champion made his move on the final lap to reclaim third and keep his podium streak rolling in 2021.
Gagne’s win moves him up to second in the MotoAmerica Superbike Championship, with his teammate Herrin right behind in third. The Fresh N’ Lean Attack Performance Yamaha Racing duo return to action tomorrow for Race Two at the Virginia International Raceway on Sunday, May 23, and look to keep climbing up the points standings.