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May 10, 2012

Team Hammer Looking Forward To Racing On "Home Track" At Barber While Chasing 50th AMA Pro Race Win

Team M4 Suzuki's Dane Westby at Road Atlanta. Photo by Brian J. Nelson, courtesy of AMA Pro Racing

Birmingham, Ala. -- Area fans will have some local rooting interest in the Triumph Superbike Classic at Barber Motorsports Park June 22-24. Team Hammer, one of the stalwart squads in the AMA Pro paddock, is based in Athens, AL.

Team Hammer is closing in on their 50th AMA Pro win. The team currently has 49 victories, four championships, and 115 podium finishes in AMA Pro competition. Additionally, Team Hammer has 133 Overall National Endurance wins and 13 National Endurance championships over the years.

The team is competing in its 32nd consecutive racing season, so it is safe to say they know something about big-time racing.

Alabama native Keith Perry said, "We have two race weekends before Barber, and naturally we hope to get that 50th win before we get to Barber but it would be great to do it there, too."

"I think the team is functioning at a very high level," he added. "We have some awesome guys at the shop and they are putting out some awesome equipment for some talented riders. We're enjoying this run and we'll keep working hard to maintain it."

The team fields riders under the M4 Suzuki banner and through Team Hammer Contract Services. Former Daytona SportBike champion and current points leader Martin Cardenas has seen all of his American success on Team Hammer bikes. Cardenas won last year's Saturday AMA Pro Superbike race at Barber Motorsports Park, and he clinched the '10 Daytona SportBike crown at Barber the year before.

This season, he's won three GoPro Daytona SportBike races on the GEICO Suzuki fielded by Team Hammer Contract Services.

His DSB teammate Dane Westby is one of the hard chargers in the class, too. Westby's #5 M4 Suzuki is usually near the front in the thrilling middleweight class. Westby won at Mid-Ohio last season and has been strong throughout 2012.

Elena Myers and Team Hammer have re-written the history books in her short pro career. Myers won a race at Infineon Raceway in 2010 and became the first woman to win an AMA Pro sprint race. In March, the 18-year-old won in SuperSport at Daytona to become the first woman to win a professional motorsports event at the Daytona International Speedway when she put her SuzukiScoopFans M4 Suzuki on the top of the podium.

In the National Guard Superbike class, Team Hammer fields M4 Suzuki's Chris Ulrich and Robertino Pietri on the Team Venezuela bike. Superbike vet Ulrich always brings a professional approach to his trade and has been the team's Superbike development rider for years. Pietri also has some MotoGP duties at selected races.

Perry said it came naturally for an Alabama-based team to develop an affinity for the scenic Birmingham circuit. The team's proximity to a world-class track was the easy part. Earning some big-time victories along the way helped, too.

"Even when they were building Barber Motorsports Park years ago, I was anticipating it. I think the whole racing community was excited to have a circuit of that quality," Perry said. "Our team is proud for it and we've been successful at Barber Motorsports Park, too. Naturally, we think it is our home track and we try very hard there. We've had riders who have had a lot of success there, particularly Martin. It's a great facility and we really look forward to going to Barber Motorsports Park."

Tickets for the Triumph Superbike Classic start at just $15 and can be purchased at Kids 15 and under are admitted free with a ticketed adult. The Motorcycle Super Saver package is available until June 21st with access to all four motorcycle events at Barber Motorsports Park in 2012, along with complimentary motorcycle parade laps during the Triumph Superbike Classic.

While at Barber Motorsports Park, fans are encouraged to visit the Barber Vintage Motorsports Museum, a 144,000 square foot home to the largest private collection of motorcycles, representing 20 countries and over 200 manufacturers. Tickets to the Museum are available for an additional fee and can be purchased at the door.