MotoAmerica: Norton, Pond Join Altus Motorsports – Roadracing World Magazine

MotoAmerica: Norton, Pond Join Altus Motorsports – Roadracing World Magazine

MotoAmerica: Mike Pond joins Altus Team for 2023. Norton Steps in for Paasch at Road Atlanta. 

(Altus, OK) – Altus Motorsports has announced that MotoAmerica veteran Mike Pond has joined the team as the Crew Chief for the Stock 1000 and Supersport efforts, replacing the late Eric Gray. Pond’s vast experience and success make him a valuable addition to the team.

“We are extremely lucky to bring Mike Pond on board,” said team owner George Nassaney. “Losing Eric was a massive blow, but Pond’s arrival will ensure that the team’s performance remains at the highest level.”

However, unfortunate news comes as Brandon Paasch broke his back while training on a motocross bike in late March. This left the team without a pilot for the Stock 1000 bike for at least the Road Atlanta race.

“We are hoping for a speedy recovery for Paasch,” said Nassaney, “but I told him not to rush it. He needs to be fully recovered before he gets back on the bike. His long-term health is way more important.”

In place of Paasch at Road Atlanta, Anthony Norton will be stepping in to ride the Suzuki GSX-R1000R. Norton has had a successful club racing career on the west coast. He has taken a Supersport Open championship and holds the overall #2 at CVMA. He has also done endurance racing with MRA, holds a lap record at Podium Club with ASMA, and ran the two West Coast rounds of MotoAmerica last year as a privateer.

“I am super bummed for Brandon. After the way he ended last season, I really thought this would be his year,” said Anthony Norton. “But I am honored to have the opportunity to join the grid with the Altus team. I’ve never ridden Road Atlanta, but with Mike Pond and Mike Castro’s support, I know the bike will be dialed. I have huge shoes to fill, but I am ready for the challenge.”

Team owner George Nassaney said “2023 has definitely thrown our team some massive challenges.  It’s been difficult, but what I have learned from the late Eric Gray you must push through the challenges to get the big prize.  We have a great team of riders and excellent mechanics under our tent.  This year is dedicated to Eric and we will be ready for round one in a couple weeks.”

The Altus Motorsports team is supported by our great family of sponsors: Altus Motorsports, FLY Racing WPS, Suzuki Motor Corporation, Yamaha Motor Corporation, Moto-D Racing, Bonamici, Hot Bodies Racing, M4 Exhausts, Vortex EK, Motion Pro, Barnett, Maxima Racing Oils, SBS Brakes, BrakeTech USA, Inc., Ohlins, K-Tech, RS Taichi, Arai, Law Tigers Oklahoma, and Altus Factory Racing.