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Sep 21, 2012

Roger Hayden Gets Provisional AMA Pro Superbike Pole Position During Rain-Affected Session In Florida (Updated Again)

Roger Hayden (54). Photo by Brian J. Nelson, courtesy of AMA Pro Racing
Roger Hayden got up to speed quickly in Friday's AMA Pro National Guard Superbike provisional qualifying session at the Triumph Big Kahuna Miami at Homestead-Miami Speedway. The rider from Kentucky turned a 1:22.746 on his National Guard Suzuki GSX-R1000 on his second flying lap, setting a new official AMA Pro lap record for the 2.2-mile infield road course.

The old AMA Pro Superbike lap record for Homestead-Miami Speedway was 1:26.295, which was set by Miguel Duhamel on a Honda RC45 in 1996, the only other year AMA Pro Racing held an event at the track.

Ben Bostrom was the fastest Superbike rider during the official AMA Pro Road Racing test at Homestead-Miami Speedway in March, but Bostrom's time of 1:21.455 was not an official lap record. AMA Pro Racing only recognizes laps turned during official qualifying sessions toward lap records.

When rain began to fall 10 minutes into Friday's 50-minute Superbike qualifying session Hayden's time stayed at the top of the order, giving him the provisional pole position.

Only a handful of riders went back out on the track once it was wet. The first rider to try the wet conditions was Championship leader Josh Hayes, who was followed out by Aussie Dave Anthony, Hayden, Larry Pegram, Robertino Pietri and Chris Ulrich.

After the session, AMA Pro Racing Road Race Director David McGrath asked several riders, including Hayes, for their opinion on the suitability of the track for racing in the wet.

"I told him I don't think racing in the wet is a good idea," Hayes told Roadracingworld.com. "The walls at Turn Three, Turn Five and Turn Seven are too close, and even on the brakes at Turn Six, there's not enough run-off room. And if you lose it on the brakes going in there the bike is going to beat you to the Airfence every time."



Triumph Big Kahuna Miami/GEICO Motorcycle AMA Pro Road Racing
AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike
Homestead-Miami Speedway
Homestead, Florida
September 21, 2012
Provisional Qualifying Session One Results (dry-to-wet conditions, all on Dunlop tires):

1. Roger Hayden (Suz GSX-R1000), 1:22.746
2. Ben Bostrom (Suz GSX-R1000), 1:22.857
3. Josh Hayes (Yam YZF-R1), 1:23.061
4. Blake Young (Suz GSX-R1000), 1:23.581
5. Danny Eslick (EBR 1190RS), 1:23.623
6. Chris Ulrich (Suz GSX-R1000), 1:23.823
7. Geoff May (EBR 1190RS), 1:24.065
8. Robertino Pietri (Suz GSX-R1000), 1:24.172
9. Josh Herrin (Yam YZF-R1), 1:24.191
10. Larry Pegram (BMW S1000RR), 1:24.563
11. David Anthony (Suz GSX-R1000), 1:24.984
12. Aaron Yates (BMW S1000RR), 1:25.825
13. Jordan Burgess (Suz GSX-R1000), 1:25.889
14. Taylor Knapp (Suz GSX-R1000), 1:25.903
15. Bruno Silva (Kaw ZX-10R), 1:26.105
16. Sean Dwyer (Suz GSX-R1000), 1:26.774
17. Jeffrey Lampe (Kaw ZX-10R), 1:26.847
18. Barrett Long (Duc 1098R), 1:26.963
19. Felipe Maclean (Kaw ZX-10R), 1:27.499
20. Chris Fillmore (KTM RC8R), no time recorded
21. Chris Clark (Suz GSX-R1000), no time recorded
22. Steve Rapp (Kaw ZX-10R), no time recorded




More, from a press release issued by AMA Pro Racing:

Early Strike: Roger Hayden on Top at Homestead-Miami Speedway in Friday's AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike Action

HOMESTEAD, Fla. (September 21, 2012) - The inclusion of Homestead-Miami Speedway to the 2012 GEICO Motorcycle AMA Pro Road Racing schedule after more than 15 years away not only brought some different scenery to the series but a change of pace atop the AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike order as well, at least for the day.

Two-time series champion Josh Hayes has gone the entire 2012 campaign without suffering a qualifying defeat, but he was provisionally out-paced on Friday at the Triumph Big Kahuna Miami presented by Dunlop Tire and LeoVince by National Guard Jordan Suzuki's Roger Hayden.

Hayden put his head down from the session's earliest stages, throwing down a hot lap of 1:22.746 aboard his #54 GSX-R1000 prior to the arrival of the afternoon rain which spoiled the bulk of the session.

While something of an upset considering Hayes' 2012 qualifying record, Hayden's Homestead-Miami speed did not come as a particularly big surprise, having previously been confirmed at the 2.21-mile speedway in testing.

The same can be said of Hayden's teammate, Ben Bostrom. The Jordan Suzuki man completed a provisional qualifying 1-2 for the team after the duo pulled the same trick (in reverse order) when the series tested here back in March. Bostrom was just a tick off Hayden's time, registering a 1:22.857 aboard the #23 GSX-R1000.

After claiming provisional pole, Hayden said, "The session was cut pretty short due to the weather, but I definitely felt better his afternoon. We made some changes to the bike to try to get some more grip and we worked at getting up to speed pretty quick and it paid off with the weather that came in. Even though it was cut short, it's still pretty nice to be on provisional pole -- I've never been on provisional pole in SuperBike.

"We've been pretty quick all weekend and we've tested here a few times. We still have to improve a little bit because I know those guys are going to go faster, but for right now we're on pace and looking forward to tomorrow."

Hayden has made it known all season long that his goal is to win a race before the year is out. He's running short on chances but Homestead-Miami Speedway and the finale at NOLA Motorsports Park might just represent his two best chances of the entire season.

"There are only four more shots at it, and they're two tracks I've tested well at," he said. "Besides New Jersey, we've had pretty good speed the couple of races leading into that and New Jersey I think the rider just wasn't performing. So these last next races are really important; my goal is to win a race and that's what I'm working toward. I think that shows. In qualifying, my first flying lap was quicker than I went this morning. I've definitely got my head in the game this weekend and we're still working hard to accomplish that goal. And at the end of the season, it's when teams are looking around and I'm riding for a job I'd say."

Hayes, meanwhile, ranked third on Friday. The Mississippian topped the order in the morning free session aboard his #1 Monster Energy Graves Yamaha YZF-R1 before posting a 1:23.061 in the opening minutes of basic qualifying to claim a spot on the provisional front row.

Depending on tomorrow morning's weather conditions, Friday's times could stand and Hayden's early strength just might prevent SuperBike history; Hayes is currently riding a streak of 11 consecutive pole positions, even for best all-time with Mat Mladin's run from '05-'06.

Meanwhile, the only man remaining with even a remote mathematical chance of beating Hayes for this year's crown, Blake Young, was fourth fastest on Friday. The Yoshimura Suzuki pilot has struggled somewhat in qualifying as of late, failing to qualify on the front row since Road America, although he has still racked up five podium results over that span.

Team Hero EBR's Danny Eslick was fifth quick on the day aboard the exotic EBR 1190RS. M4 Suzuki' Chris Ulrich notched up an impressive sixth-best time, one spot ahead of Eslick's teammate, Geoff May, on the #99 Team Amsoil/Hero EBR. The final spot on the provisional second row went to Team Venezuela's Robertino Pietri.

A stacked Row 3 sees Hayes' Yamaha teammate, Josh Herrin, Foremost Insurance Pegram Racing BMW's Larry Pegram, Kneedraggers.com/Motul/Fly Racing's David Anthony, and AMA Pro SuperBike legend Aaron Yates on the EvanSteelPerformance.com BMW S1000RR.


AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike

Y.E.S./Graves/Yamaha's Cameron Beaubier won provisional pole for AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Friday. Beaubier led the session by more than a second, putting the rare bit of single-rider domination in a class known for a deep and competitive field. The young rider's best mark (1:24.645) was 1.149 seconds ahead of Martin Cardenas of the GEICO Suzuki team. Jake Gagne was third for RoadRace Factory/Red Bull.

"From the get-go in practice, my bike felt awesome. We didn't make too many changes. I felt comfortable," said Beaubier. "The weather was messing with us a little bit."

The wide margin for Beaubier was one of the larger ones since GoPro Daytona SportBike began in 2009. "I was kinda surprised it was that big a margin," Beaubier continued. "Hopefully I get to keep moving in the right direction."

Cardenas currently leads the series points, with a 76-point margin over teammate Dane Westby (M4 Suzuki).

Gagne, a young rider who has flashed potential this season but has had terrible luck at times, ran strongly in third for most of the 50-minute session.

Jason DiSalvo, on his Latus Motors Racing-branded Triumph 675R, pipped Bobby Fong (Meen Motorsports) for fourth late in the session.

AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com SuperSport

James Rispoli and Dustin Dominguez have had many on-track battles this year and had another at Homestead-Miami Speedway on Friday, with Rispoli (Orient Express Celtic Racing) emerging out from with just a 0.04-seconds ahead of Dominguez (Latus Motors Racing Triumph) to take provisional pole for AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com SuperSport. Rispoli was strong in the session as the defending series champ nearly topped his best lap on the final time around.

"The track was a little slick. I really made a pretty big mistake and was surprised to see a 1:26.0," said Rispoli. "I was trying to send a message to say I'm still here and we're putting on the pressure. I'm trying to pull the double and win the surfboard."

Tomas Puerta (RoadRace Factory/Red Bull) and Jake Lewis (Riders Discount Vesrah Suzuki) join Domninguez and Rispoli on the provisional front row.

Stefano Mesa (Kneedraggers.com) lists Boca Raton, FL as his American base and was able to earn fifth on Friday.

Television Coverage, AMA Pro Live Streaming Video Experience, Live Timing & Scoring and Social Media Channels

SPEED will air the National Guard SuperBike and GoPro Daytona SportBike races in a set of back-to-back, same-day delayed broadcasts. Saturday's race finals will begin at 12:00 midnight ET/9:00 p.m. PT late Saturday night, September 22 and Sunday's races will be broadcast beginning at 12:00 midnight ET/9:00 p.m. PT late Sunday night, September 9. SPEED2 will stream the Motorcycle-Superstore.com SuperSport and Vance & Hines XR1200 Series races live, fans can watch by logging onto www.speed2.com. SPEED2 is a broadband service available to customers of Time Warner, Bright House Networks, Cablevision, DISH and Cox. For more information and instructions on gaining access to all of this season's AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com SuperSport and AMA Pro Vance & Hines XR1200 Series races, please review the SPEED2 FAQ located at www.speed2.com/faq.

AMA Pro Live, the online streaming video experience launched earlier this season, will be broadcasting views from around the track this weekend. Tune in at www.amaprolive.com.

GEICO Motorcycle AMA Pro Road Racing Live Timing & Scoring presented by Cortech offers fans real-time access to results from on-track sessions at live.amaproracing.com/rr/. Between the races, stay connected with GEICO Motorcycle AMA Pro Road Racing at www.twitter.com/AMAProSBK and www.facebook.com/AMAProRoadRacing.

Event Features
In addition to the GEICO Motorcycle AMA Pro Road Racing action, there will be family-friendly entertainment located in every turn. Event promoter M1 PowerSports will be bringing motorcycle stunt rider Jason Britton, local music sensation DJ Irie, a 4x4 Monster Ride Truck, the always-popular Big Kahuna Bikini Girls, a kid's corral full of fun for the Little Kahunas and dozens of vendors.

Tickets for this fall's Big Kahuna Miami, scheduled for September 21 - 23, 2012 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, can be purchased at www.m1powersports.com/big-kahuna-miami/.

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.




More, from a press release issued by Yamaha:

It's Not The Heat, It's The"¦Yamaha U.S. Road Racing Teams Who Stifle The Competition On Friday At Homestead-Miami Speedway

Homestead, FL September 21, 2012 The first day was a good one for the Yamaha U.S. Road Racing Teams as the Monster Energy/Graves/Yamaha and Yamaha Extended Service/Graves/Yamaha riders got things started at the 12-turn, 2.21-mile Homestead-Miami Speedway in GEICO Motorcycle AMA Pro Road Racing competition.

In AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike, Cameron Beaubier was in a class of his own in Friday's first qualifying session as he earned the provisional pole position by more than a second over his closest competitor. That's a remarkable feat, considering how tight and twisty the infield road course is at Homestead-Miami.

Commenting on his provisional-pole-winning day, Cameron said, "From the get-go, in practice, my R6 felt awesome. I just felt really good in both sessions. I was pretty sore for the first week after my New Jersey crash, but I'm good to go now, and I'm ready to race."

In AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike, two-time reigning series champion Josh Hayes led the late-morning practice session aboard his #1 Monster Energy/Graves/Yamaha YZF-R1, which was a better gauge of how things might progress through the weekend. That's because the afternoon's provisional qualifying session was fraught with rain and wet track conditions that were not conducive to the fast lap times to which Josh is accustomed. Despite the less-than ideal conditions, Josh still qualified in third position, with final qualifying set for tomorrow morning.

"We only got five laps in the dry, and then it started raining," Josh said. "We talked to the AMA, and we weren't sure about riding in the wet, but I couldn't really evaluate the situation without actually riding on the wet track. So, I went back out in the rain and did three or four laps. The track still had a lot of grip in the wet, but the concrete patches were sketchy, and there were a lot of puddles. The wet grass in the runoff areas is a big concern because you slide forever on wet grass, and the walls are right there. I told the AMA that we really can't race safely in the rain, so I'm hoping tomorrow and Sunday are dry. We want to put on a good show for the fans, and I hope Mother Nature lets us."

Josh's teammate, Josh Herrin, who rides the #2 Monster Energy/Graves/Yamaha R1, cut short his qualifying effort and chose not to go out on the wet track. "I'm hoping the weather is a little better for tomorrow morning's final qualifying, and we can focus on working ourselves a lot further up in the field." Right now, Josh sits in ninth place on the grid.

In AMA Pro Motorcycle-SuperStore.com SuperSport, Garrett Gerloff spent most of the first day acclimating to a track that he's never set a tire on before. Garrett was ninth-fastest in the early-afternoon first-practice session, and he followed that up by being tenth-fastest in provisional qualifying. The 17-year-old rider will be looking to move up as he gets more lap time on the new-for-him track in tomorrow morning's final qualifying.

SuperSport Race 1 will go green at 1:00 PM on Saturday, Daytona SportBike Race 1 will start at 2:00 PM, and SuperBike Race 1 is scheduled for 3:15 PM. All times are Eastern.

If you can't make it to the track, be sure to watch all the action from Homestead-Miami Speedway on Speed TV. For the exact days and times of the telecasts, check your local listings, or go to www.SpeedTV.com for more information.

For news, results, and other team info, be sure to check out Yamaha's Facebook page.