Originally Posted by DogBoy
Don't know where you get that idea. What makes Roberts so special? Beach, Gagne, Solis and Beaubier all outperformed Roberts in RBRC and Gerloff's Supersport debut in 2011 was even more impressive. Roberts still needs to prove he belongs with those guys.
You are correct in that Gerloff had a similar debut at the 2011 NJMP. But he hasn't shown the same relative speed until race two last week. I think Roberts has demonstrated that he is already has enough speed to compete with the others you mention. Sure maybe his racecraft might not yet be at the level of a couple, but we know he has a lot more than most at this stage.
Barber is a very technical track. It requires different suspension settings, what with all the downhill braking zones mixed in with those long and undulating turns on the side of the tire. Gearing is even a risk. Add in that Joe had never raced there before, and we can agree he made a big statement with his lap times alone. We know he will be a force. Just like we knew Gerloff would be after 2011 NJMP.
Beaubier, Gagne, Gerloff and now Roberts are the new faces of the series. I hope at least one of those faces will be bumped up to Superbike and soon. That grid needs help.