Mother Nature played her hand on the first day of racing at the season finale, and riders were met with a lot of rain at the 2.3-mile track in Leeds, Alabama. With the grid positions being determined from yesterday’s dry session, Gagne lined up on the front row in third and Herrin on the second row in fourth. The newly crowned champ got a good start and stretched a lead upfront while his teammate battled in a three-rider fight for the other podium positions. Unfortunately, Gagne went down in the Museum corner on the second lap and rejoined in eighth. He put in a fast lap and advanced to seventh but ultimately had to pull into pit lane on Lap 5, rejoining the race at the back of the field.
Herrin was battling in third after his teammate’s crash, and then a couple of laps later, he was shuffled to eighth after running off track. The Californian made his way back up to sixth on Lap 12, but unfortunately, like many riders, he got caught out by the challenging conditions and crashed in the Museum corner. Herrin rejoined in 13th and advanced to ninth on the final lap. Despite the adversity, Gagne was also able to make a comeback, working his way back to 12th by the end of the 17-lap race.
The Fresh N’ Lean Attack Performance Yamaha Racing Team lines up tomorrow for two more races to close out the 2021 MotoAmerica Superbike season at the Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday, September 19.