TOOELE, Utah (May 30,
2012) - While AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike title contenders Blake
Young and Josh Hayes entered the BigM Weekend presented by Lucas Oil at Miller
Motorsports Park having split each of the 2012 season's previous three rounds,
the equity was destined to end in Utah with only one SuperBike race to be
The race, the weekend, and
ultimately the points lead all went to defending champion Hayes, who made a
statement with his conquering performance at MMP. While his runaway victory,
combined with the points awarded for pole and leading the most laps, transformed
what was a four-point deficit into a still-slight seven-point lead (194-187),
the Monster Energy Graves Yamaha star's step forward has been even more pivotal
than the championship table suggests.
An error on the part of Hayes
at Sonoma masks his strong run of form, but rival Young has certainly taken
notice that the Yamaha man has delivered four breakaway wins already in '12, and
demonstrated the speed to make that five. Hayes, who couldn't ask for
much more from himself or his YZF-R1, said, "What an awesome day. The bike was
good, things have been pretty smooth for the weekend, we didn't really make too
many changes, and we just worked on getting good clean laps. All in all, it was
a pretty smooth run."
The Mississippian also took
notice of the bigger picture, stating, "It was a perfect Memorial Day. Having
the National Guard as the primary sponsor of our series, it was fantastic that
on Memorial Day we would be able to put on a good show for them. Thanks to all
the servicemen and women out there who support us and hopefully they were
entertained by the show under the umbrella they provide for us."
meanwhile, is desperate to get back on track before Hayes creates even more
separation at the front. The Yoshimura Racing Suzuki star is hoping that this
weekend's doubleheader at his home track, Road America in Elkhart Lake,
Wisconsin, will allow him to successfully strike back. "I really enjoy this (MMP),
but I don't know what it is -- I've just been in this little funk," Young said.
"I need to pull through it and apologize to my team. For some reason I'm just a
little bit off the beat right now and I don't know if I can point a finger at
something. I think I need to reevaluate and get focused. I don't have too much
time before we'll be home at Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin but maybe that's what I
need -- to be home with my friends and family -- to get me motivated to be back
up at the front and start racing with Josh [Hayes]. He's done this quite a few
races already this year. I need to be racing at the front."
Josh Hayes #1 leads team mate Josh Herrin #2, Blake Young #79 and Roger Lee Hayden #54 during the AMA Superbike race at Miller Motorsports Park. AMA Pro Road Racing photo by Brian J. Nelson.
is concerned with Hayes in terms of the championship picture, on Monday he was
forced to turn his attention to the other Monster Energy Graves Yamaha
powered away at the front, by the second lap it was obvious that Young would
have his hands full with a very racy Josh Herrin -- not only nipping at his
heels, but actively attacking for the position. National Guard Jordan Suzuki's
Roger Hayden was the third man in the fight for second. The Kentuckian showcased
front-running speed all weekend but was having trouble effectively translating
that into results.
While Hayden spent time atop
the leaderboards in practice and qualifying (including posting the best lap in
the Monday warm-up), Hayden crashed twice in the lead up to the race, including
a big fall in Turn 1 on Monday morning that tore up his 'A' bike. His weekend ended in the same
style, crashing out of the race early while showing the speed to push for a
runner-up position. "I'm pretty disappointed,"
admitted Hayden. "I could see the leaders getting away and I felt like I had
more speed, but I ended up going into the turn wide and using a little too much
front brake, and I lost the front end. But we've been fast the whole weekend and
that's something we can build on. It's Memorial Day, and I wish we could've
gotten a better finish for the National Guard. For now, though, we'll just focus
on Road America." Hayden's teammate, Ben
Bostrom, took up the charge in Hayden's absence, closing in on Young and Herrin
before later fading from the fight.
SuperBike rookie Herrin
shifted his strategy and chose to instead conserve his tires and wait on Young's
rear tire for the final lap. A bold strategy considering Young's sparkling
history of winning last-lap battles, Herrin made it work. His first attempt was
immediately met with a very hard counter by the Suzuki ace, but the Yamaha pilot
regrouped and made a second, more decisive, strike to win out for second
place. After claiming his best
SuperBike result yet, Herrin said, "It was an awesome race other than the fact
that Josh was on the same bike and beat me by eight seconds -- probably more; I
probably went about half his pace at the end. But it was pretty cool to be
riding with Blake. It was a lot of fun. I didn't quite have the pace to dice
with him the whole race. I was just trying to learn where he was stronger and
where I was stronger. I was able to get up close to him a few times and see that
his tire was getting pretty worn out.
"I got lucky with that pass on
the outside. It was pretty sketchy because it was dusty out on the edge of the
track but luckily it stuck. I was able to hold him off the rest of the lap.
Hopefully we can be a contender for a win later on in the season but for now I'm
ecstatic getting second."
Meanwhile, Bostrom found
himself come under assault by the Team Amsoil/Hero EBR 1190RS of Geoff
May. May and teammate Danny Eslick
on the Team Hero EBR backed up their stellar Sonoma performances by again
showing front-running pace. Coming off their Infineon Raceway podium results,
the two qualified third and fourth, respectively, for the MMP final. While they weren't able to
challenge for a place on the podium this time out, May continued to build as the
race progressed and eventually gobbled up Bostrom for fourth, giving Herrin and
Young something to think about in second and third. Bostrom held on for fifth,
finishing a few seconds clear of Eslick in sixth.
"What can I say? Jordan Motorsports continues to improve our #23 Jordan Suzuki
GSX-R1000 and I'm confident that we can win. I can't thank the boys enough for
the long hours they've put in. It wasn't our day today but we're getting
Foremost Insurance Pegram
Racing's Larry Pegram took a relatively lonely seventh on the BWM S1000RR,
followed by Young's Yoshimura Racing Suzuki teammate, Chris Clark. "Miller is my favorite track,
and I was pretty confident that the Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000 would go good
there," Clark said. "I'm getting more and more comfortable with the bike with
every opportunity that I get to ride it, and I think my results this weekend
show that. I've said all along that my goal is to finish the season in the top
five overall and this weekend I moved closer to that goal. Now I'm just looking
forward to Road America next weekend and hopefully progressing more."
David Anthony came home in ninth with KTM/HMC Racing's Chris Fillmore rounding
out the top ten, one position ahead of a gritty ride by the mending Steve Rapp
on the Attack Performance Kawasaki ZX-10R. KTM pilot Fillmore, who was
the team's sole entry with Stefan Nebel away due to visa issues, said, "It was a
tough weekend coming to Miller for the first time and we had limited time on the
track due to the changing weather conditions. We never found the optimal set-up
for the race and we thought the potential was there for a stronger
While Hayes and Herrin head to
Road America riding high off their Utah 1-2, they'll have to contend with
'Cheese Power' in Wisconsin. Not only is Young from nearby Madison, Wis., but
the EBR, Michael Jordan Motorsports, and HMC Racing outfits are all based in
Wisconsin and will be eager to go home as well.
Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike Recap
Three men have emerged at the
front in the AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike class in recent races. Martin
Cardenas (GEICO Suzuki), Jason DiSalvo (Latus Motors Racing Triumph) and Cameron
Beaubier (Y.E.S Graves Yamaha). The trio fought at the front once again in Utah,
with Cardenas grabbing a nail-biter from DiSalvo with a last-lap pass that
culminated a hectic two-day weekend plagued with changing weather
Cardenas won pole again but
DiSalvo led into turn one on the first lap. Beaubier, Benny Solis
(Kneedraggers.com Yamaha) and Jake Zemke (Ducshop Ducati) got away quickly to
set the early pace. Beaubier made his case, taking
the point on lap two before a dice with DiSalvo developed. Cardenas held his
ground in third, conscious of tire issues caused by the cool
temperatures. By halfway, Cardenas had
relegated Beaubier to third and the Colombian put his head down to chase
DiSalvo, who had tried to make a break. The Triumph rider set his best
individual lap time on lap nine.
The acknowledged master of
late-race charges, Cardenas added to his reputation with a relentless pursuit of
DiSalvo, who gave Cardenas little hope as the New Yorker clicked off
mistake-free laps. Cardenas tried forcing the issue under braking on the last
lap, but it did not work the first time he tried it and it seemed as if his best
chance to pass was gone. Cardenas got a strong drive
going down into Club Corner, however, and made a great block pass on the #40
bike. Just then, the duo encountered lapped traffic. Cardenas was able to get
through the two backmarkers better than DiSalvo to take the win. "Jason got a gap in the middle
of the race and I had to push very hard to catch up," said Cardenas. "I was
planning to make a move in the hairpin but he was faster to the inside. It
didn't work for me then, but the last two corners I got a good drive and I could
Cardenas now leads the
championship over Tommy Hayden (Y.E.S. Graves Yamaha) by 31 and DiSalvo by
"That last lap was tough.
Martin rode a great race," DiSalvo said. "I put my head down in the middle of
the race but I think I might have burned up my tire a little bit. I knew Martin
was charging hard but I gave it all we had."
Beaubier had has hands full
with Zemke in the late going. With three to go, Zemke made his way past, but
Beaubier denied him of a trip to the podium. "At the beginning, DiSalvo and
I were trading positions back and forth, I burned up my tire and couldn't keep
the pace," Beaubier said. "Zemke got around me with four or five to go. After
that, I couldn't gather myself up until the last lap or two. I'm happy with the
result but I want to keep the pace with the front two guys."
Zemke ran wide but was able to
consolidate fourth, ahead of Meen Motorsports' Bobby Fong, who is having a
strong season for a small team. After poor starts, Dane Westby
(M4 Suzuki) and J.D. Beach (RoadRace Factory/Red Bull) hooked up and were able
to run down and pass Solis, who was in his first ride for his new squad in Utah.
Westby took sixth, Beach seventh, and Solis eighth.
Jason DiSalvo and Martin Cardenas spray the bubbly after their exciting race in the AMA Pro Daytona SportBike Series round at Miller Motorsports Park. AMA Pro Road Racing photo by Brian J. Nelson.
Championship hopeful Hayden
had a disappointing Utah but was able to get ninth ahead of Jake Gagne (RoadRace
Factory/Red Bull) who never got his bike completely dialed at Miller Motorsports
The class now goes to Road
America and the field will look to close the points gap Cardenas has been able
AMA Pro Road Racing will next head East for Round 5 with
a stop at Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin. The Subway Superbike Double Header will take
place at Road America this weekend, June 1-3. For tickets and event information,
please visit www.RoadAmerica.com
AMA Pro Racing is the premier professional
motorcycle racing organization in North America, operating a full schedule of
events and championships for a variety of motorcycle disciplines. Learn more
about AMA Pro Racing at www.amaproracing.com.
For additional information
|BigM Weekend - AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike
|Joey Pascarella Earns Ride For Rest of AMA Pro
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Cameron Beaubier Ready for Another Podium at
Miller Motorsports Park
Tommy Hayden Fills Us In On his Ride With
Moto2 Rider Tommy Aquino Returns to AMA Pro
|BigM Weekend - AMA Pro National Guard
SuperBike Race Highlights|
|Josh Hayes Takes Another Win this Season at
Miller Motorsports Park|
|HMC/KTM's Chris Fillmore Takes Lap of