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May 17, 2001

AMA Pro Racing Gave Yates and Hacking Special Permission to Break Rules on Practice

AMA Pro Racing Director of Competition Merrill Vanderslice personally signed off on a special deal allowing Aaron Yates and Jamie Hacking to violate AMA rules restricting pre-race practice at Road Atlanta Tuesday and Wednesday.<BR><BR>On page 14 of the 2001 AMA Pro Racing Rulebook, the restriction on practice includes the following language: <BR><BR><BR>"Riders in the following categories are not permitted to take part in any practices or schools at a track within 10 days preceding the first day of official practice of a national road race: <BR><BR>"1) Riders currently in the top 10 in points of Superbike or 600 Supersport<BR><BR>"2) Riders in the top ten in the final point standings of the previous year in Superbike or 600 Supersport.<BR><BR>"3) Former National Champions of Superbike and 600 Supersport within the preceding 5 years."<BR><BR>Despite the rule, and in spite of refusing to bend when the same request was made for John Hopkins last year, Vanderslice gave permission for Yates and Hacking to instruct in the Kevin Schwantz Road Atlanta School on Tuesday and Wednesday before the AMA National at Road Atlanta. Hopkins was barred from teaching in the 2000 Team Hammer Advanced Riding School session held on Thursday before the AMA National at Road Atlanta.<BR><BR>Press releases issued by the Kevin Schwantz Road Atlanta School claimed that Mat Mladin would also instruct in Tuesday and Wednesday's school sessions, but in fact, Mladin did not attend.<BR><BR>In AMA 2000 Superbike Series points, Mladin was ranked first, Yates was ranked third, and Hacking was ranked 10th. In 2000 AMA 600 Supersport points, Hacking was ranked third, and Yates was ranked sixth.<BR><BR>See related post on 5/16/01.<BR><BR><BR><BR><BR><BR><BR>