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Sep 25, 2010

Updated Again: AMA Pro National Guard Superbike Race One At Barber Not Settled Until Final Corner

Rockstar Makita Suzuki's Tommy Hayden (22) takes a victory lap after winning Saturday's AMA Pro National Guard Superbike race.
AMA Pro National Guard Superbike
Barber Motorsports Park
Birmingham, Alabama
September 25, 2010
Provisional Race One Results (all on Dunlop tires):

1. Tommy Hayden (Suz GSX-R1000), 21 laps
2. Josh Hayes (Yam YZF-R1), -0.052 second
3. John Hopkins (Suz GSX-R1000), -10.876 seconds
4. Blake Young (Suz GSX-R1000), -15.850
5. Taylor Knapp (Suz GSX-R1000), -29.199
6. Geoff May (Buell 1125RR), -35.522
7. Jake Holden (Yam YZF-R1), -42.722
8. Jeff Wood (Suz GSX-R1000), -47.815
9. Shane Narbonne (Suz GSX-R1000), -55.804
10. Brett McCormick (Suz GSX-R1000), -57.168, crash
11. Ricky Corey (Yam YZF-R1), -77.126
12. Eric Bostrom (Suz GSX-R1000), -1 lap, DNF, crash
13. Chris Clark (Yam YZF-R1), -1 lap, -76.204
14. Trent Gibson (Suz GSX-R1000), -1 lap, -76.676
15. Eric Haugo (Suz GSX-R1000), -1 lap, -81.573
16. Skip Salenius (Suz GSX-R1000), -1 lap, -87.869
17. Johnny Rock Page (Suz GSX-R1000), -3 laps
18. Larry Pegram (Duc 1098R), -13 laps, DNF, retired/mechanical
19. Sean Dwyer (Suz GSX-R1000), -14 laps, DNF
20. Jake Zemke (Suz GSX-R1000), -16 laps, DNF, mechanical
21. Chris Peris (BMW S1000RR), -21 laps, DNF, mechanical
22. Chris Ulrich (Suz GSX-R1000), DNS

Provisional Championship Point Standings (after 18 of 19 races):

1. Hayes, 452 points
2. Hayden, 434
3. Zemke, 316
4. Ben Bostrom, 295
5. Pegram, 276
6. Young, 252
7. Knapp, 214
8. Ulrich, 188
9. McCormick, 180
10. Clark, 129
11. May, 128
12. Hopkins, 126
13. Narbonne, 110
14. Holden, 107
15. Peris, 60
16. Aaron Yates, 59
17. TIE, Eric Bostrom/Page/Haugo, 58
20. David Anthony, 56

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

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (September 25, 2010) - Today's action at Barber Motorsports Park delivered three memorable races where some of the championship pieces began to fall into place as the 2010 AMA Pro Road Racing season draws to a close.

In the AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike race, Tommy Hayden took his fifth victory of the year with a very determined ride chasing down early race leader Josh Hayes. Hayden, riding his Rockstar Makita Suzuki started the race in fourth position and quickly worked his way to second place and then reeled in the race and points leader Josh Hayes. Hayes started second and passed pole position winner Blake Young before the end of the first lap and rode off to a comfortable lead.

Josh and his Team Graves Yamaha went on to lead the most laps and gained another valuable point in pursuit of his first AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike championship. But slowly but surely, Tommy Hayden began to track Hayes down. At one point, Tommy passed Hayes but almost as quickly as he got by, Josh went right back by Tommy. But as the race wound down, Tommy was able to get by Josh and pulled out a small gap. Now it was Hayes' turn to become the hunter and he was able to close the gap to finish just 0.053 of a second behind Hayden at the line. This result was what Hayden needed to keep his championship hopes alive, the points difference is now down to eighteen with a maximum of 31 points available in tomorrow's second race of the weekend.

"I accomplished what I needed to today, I wanted to win the race and make Josh ride hard and I was able to do that," said Hayden after the race. "Tomorrow, I will need a bit of luck but I will try to win again and then we'll see what happens."

Behind the two championship contenders, John Hopkins continued his run of strong results as he took another podium finish on his M4 Monster Energy Suzuki with third place.

Polesitter Blake Young took fourth on his Rockstar Makita Suzuki and Taylor Knapp finished a surprised fifth after a last lap incident between Eric Bostrom and Brett McCormick. The two had been running together for most of the race after Bostrom had a truncated start that saw him move prior to the green light but after he regained his proper position relative to his starting position, he began a nice ride up to fifth place on his Cycle World Attack Performance Yoshimura Suzuki. He and McCormick, riding his Jordan Suzuki had been battling together from about the fourth lap and unfortunately they got together on the last lap and Eric suffered an injury to his left leg that will prevent him from competing in tomorrow's race.

Geoff May and his Erik Buell Racing Buell also benefitted and he took sixth ahead of Jake Holden who is substituting for Ben Bostrom on the Pat Clark Motorsports Yamaha. Jeff Wood took eighth on his Vesrah Suzuki. Shane Narbonne was ninth and McCormick was just able to finish the race in tenth.

Once again, tomorrow's SuperBike race will be a battle of wits and speed between Josh Hayes and Tommy Hayden. If Tommy wins and takes the extra point for most laps led, Hayes will have to finish ninth or worse for him to lose the championship. But if this year is to finish on form, anything can happen in tomorrow's AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike season finale.

In Daytona SportBike presented by AMSOIL, Martin Cardenas rode one of his most measured and complete races of the year in capturing his series high eighth race win of the season and in the process, he took over the points lead from Danny Eslick. Martin and his M4 Monster Energy Suzuki now lead the Daytona SportBike standings by five points over Eslick and his GEICO Powersports Suzuki by eight over Josh Herrin going into tomorrow's final race of the Daytona SportBike season.

Taking a surprise second place was Project 1 Atlanta Yamaha rider Clinton Seller. He has been quick all weekend and he pretty much attached himself to the back of Martin's Suzuki and stayed there for the entire 21 lap race. Clinton tried on more than one occasion to pass Martin but using excellent judgment and skill, Clinton raced Martin hard but fair and at the end, he was only 0.127 of a second behind at the checkered flag. It was Danny Eslick that had the most eventful race, he grabbed the early lead but just as quickly, the race was red flagged due to a couple of incidents, Paul Allison went down in turn one and three more motorcycles went off together later on the same lap necessitating a red flag.

On the restart, Cardenas got a much better start and he and Sellers pretty much rode off into the sunset. It was Eslick and a number of other riders including the third contender in the points chase, Team Graves Yamaha rider Josh Herrin who captured much of the focus of the race. As the bulk of the field was battling early, Herrin and Eslick got together and Herrin was pushed back to seventh place but he recovered well and put his head down to work his way right back up through the field. He re-passed Eslick on lap six, worked his way up to third and then began chipping away at the first two, at one point he seemed to be making slight progress but at the end, the leaders encountered a big group of slower riders and as Martin and Clinton were able to slice through, Josh was delayed just enough to end his slight chance at victory.

Eslick battled all day and even though he might not have had the outright speed needed to win, as usual he never gave up and finished fifth behind Seller's Project 1 Atlanta Yamaha teammate, Dane Westby. With Martin's win, he moves to the top of the standings with 375, Eslick now is in second with 372 and Herrin is in third with 367. Again, all bets are off for tomorrow's race with 31 points up for grabs. As it has all year, the Daytona SportBike race will be a thriller and go right down to the wire.

The two part AMA Pro SuperSport race for the National Championship in the Young Gun and Top Gun categories was another absolute classic race in this exciting class. LTD Racing Yamaha rider Huntley Nash delivered his best ride of the season yet in taking his third SuperSport victory over West Division Young Gun champion Joey Pascarella.

Joey actually led late in the race after another one of his heroic rides but Huntley was able to re-pass Joey's DNA Energy Drink Yamaha with half a lap to go to take a well deserved win, setting him up for tomorrow's finale. Poleposition winner and East Division Young Gun champion J.D. Beach had the most disappointing day. After Nash grabbed the lead at the start, J.D. was back by Huntley before the end of lap one but in a blink of an eye, J.D. was down in the Alabama corner, his Rockwall Engineering Yamaha cart wheeling into the gravel trap.

J.D. was up quickly and tried to continue but his Yamaha was too badly damaged to continue. With Moto Style scoring for the two races, his hopes of the National Championship are gone but J.D. will be back going for the win tomorrow and he can look back on his five wins and East Division championship with tremendous pride. Another on-form rider had a tough day, New Jersey winner James Rispoli ran in second until he had a fall on lap nine, ending his day for his Suzuki team.

Although Huntley's LTD Racing Yamaha teammate Tomas Puerta was keeping the leaders honest in third, it was down to Huntley and Joey. Joey looked faster at times but every time he got close, Huntley was able to hold him off. On lap fifteen Joey made his move and he was able to pull out a small gap but Huntley, on his newly painted pink Yamaha, in recognition of his Cancer Awareness campaign in honor of his late Mother, closed the gap and made the race winning pass with less than half a lap to go.

Tyler O'Hara was the highest finishing Top Gun rider, he finished ninth on his GP Bike Parts Radio Medics Yamaha. Austin DeHaven took fourth ahead of Elena Myers on her Lucas Oil Suzuki with Miles Thornton sixth. Tomorrow's SuperSport finale will determine the National Champion in both Young Gun and Top Gun classes and as with today's thrilling race, it will be another can't miss race.

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More, from a press release issued by Vesrah Suzuki:


It was a busy day for the Vesrah Suzuki team during the AMA Pro Racing Superbike Classic at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham AL with entries in Supersport and American Superbike as well as the teams usual Daytona Sportbike entries. Jeff Wood rode the #75 Vesrah Suzuki GSX-R 1000 in American Superbike while Travis Wyman rode the #24 Vesrah Suzuki GSX-R 600 in Supersport.

Travis Wyman quickly adapted to the Suzuki GSX-R 600 after riding a different brand all season. He was able to qualify in 13th place and then in Supersport Race 1 he finished in 14th.

In Daytona Sportbike both Chris Fillmore and Cory West had crashes during final qualifying and ended up qualifying on the 3rd row. The start of Race 1 did not go any better with Cory getting run off of the track in turn 1 and then being involved in a multiple bike crash in turn 4 on the first lap. The race was red flagged due to the turn 4 incident and the Vesrah Suzuki crew was able to repair Cory's bike to make the restart. Chris actually lost out as he had a good start during the initial start to the race and did not fare as well on the restart. Chris crashed out in turn 4 near the halfway point of the race. Cory did fairly well on the restart and was able to make it to as high as 5th place before he also crashed out with less than 5 laps to go in the race. Cory dropped to 6th and Chris dropped to 11th in the season points. The team hopes to regain top 5 and top 10 positions after tomorrow's race.

In the American Superbike Race 1 Jeff Wood was able to get a top 10 finish with 8th place after quickly coming to grips with the Vesrah Suzuki GSX-R 1000 that he saw for the first time on Friday. Jeff qualified in 13th place and moved up throughout the race.

Mark Junge Team Owner Vesrah Suzuki

"It was a hectic day having bikes in 3 classes but I have to thank my normal crew plus the additional crew brought in for this race for all the effort they put forth so far this weekend. It has been difficult in our normal Daytona Sportbike class today but we will come back tomorrow having worked tonight refining our set up."

Travis Wyman Vesrah Suzuki #24

"Coming into Friday practice I wasn't quite sure what to expect. I've been racing a Yamaha all season but felt that with the help of Vesrah Suzuki, I could end my season on a good note. Practice went well and I spent most of my time getting used to the bike. In qualifying my mechanic Darren and I tried to put a good set up together for the race. In Race 1 I got a decent start and was able to battle with a few guys. Towards the end of the race I struggled a bit finishing the corner but brought the Vesrah Suzuki GSX-R 600 over the line in one piece. I would just like to say thanks to Mark and the whole Vesrah team for giving me the opportunity to ride their bike this weekend. I feel that with a refined set up I will come away with a better result in Race 2 on Sunday."

Cory West Vesrah Suzuki #57

"Qualifying was rough because of a crash on my new tire. The first start I got run off the track in turn 1 and then fell in turn 4 trying to make up ground and the race was red flagged. Luckily I got to make the restart and had a much better first lap. I was back in 8th or so but started making up ground and got myself up to 5th at one point. I was struggling with front grip towards the end of the race and was trying hard to keep the pace. Unfortunately I lost the front in the museum turn and crashed out. It has been a very trying day but hopefully a good nights sleep will help and we will be back tomorrow fighting hard for a good finish."

Chris Fillmore Vesrah Suzuki #55

"Friday started slow but by today's qualifying session we made some good improvements and were on pace for a good race. From the start of Race 1 I struggled to get my bike to turn in and hold the corner. I crashed entering turn 4 under braking as I tipped it in. I tried to get the bike restarted and re-enter the race but it wouldn't start. A very tough day for me but we will try some changes for tomorrow and try our best for a good end of the season result. Big thanks to the whole Vesrah Suzuki team."

Jeff Wood Vesrah Suzuki #75

"We started Friday on a bike that was new to me and also my first time riding a 1000 this season. After working hard through Friday, my mechanics Eric and Leif really made some progress! We dropped 2.5 seconds in qualifying #1 and hoped to improve in final qualifying on Saturday morning. We tried a new set up Saturday and went a little slower so for the first race we just went back to our baseline. Top ten in the race (8th) means we did the right thing. Hopefully a couple of small tweaks will make Sunday even better."

Vesrah Suzuki wants to thank all of their sponsors for their support for the 2010 season Vesrah, American Suzuki, Rockstar Energy Drink, Nielsen Enterprises Suzuki, Traxxion Dynamics Fork Components, Dainese Leathers, Boots and Gloves, Arai (Cory), Shoei (Chris), Graves Motorsports, Hotbodies Racing Bodywork, Sudco Int., Bazzaz, Factory Pro, Maxima Racing Oils, Vortex, DID Chain, Penske Racing Shocks, GPR Stabilizers, Trek Bicycles, GP Tech, Active & Road Rage Designs

More, from a press release issued by Acorn Woods Communications on behalf of Yoshimura Racing:

Hayden Fights His Way to Fifth SuperBike Win

* Tommy Hayden rode his GSX-R1000 to his fifth win of the season on Saturday at the penultimate race of the AMA American SuperBike season.
* Blake Young earned the pole position in the early morning qualifying session aboard his Rockstar Makita Suzuki GSX-R1000.
* After his victory, Hayden is now only 18 points out from the championship lead with one race left on the schedule.

Birmingham, Ala. September 26, 2010 Rockstar Makita Suzuki's Tommy Hayden fought to the very finish for his fifth win of the 2010 AMA American Superbike series on Saturday at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama. Hayden won with a margin of .052 in a heart-stopping finish as he battles for points toward the championship. Tommy is now only 18 points back from the leader, and Hayden will be on track Sunday for the final race ready to fight for the win. His teammate Blake Young started the day off right, getting the pole position after an impressive morning qualifying session. Young finished fourth in the race.

"I was able to get a good jump off the start and put myself in a good track position," Hayden said after his victory lap. "I just tried to put my head down and not let the gap between me and the leader get any bigger. Then I just chipped away at it." Hayden drag raced to the checkered flag, where the horsepower of his Suzuki allowed him to get to the finish line in first. "I'm really happy with how today went, how my bike and my team worked, and that Suzuki horsepower got me the win," Hayden said. "I wanted to win the race. Maybe I'll get a lucky break and end up with a championship tomorrow, but if not, I want to go out trying my hardest."

Young put together a solid race effort, and his best lap of the race was only two tenths of a second behind Hayden's best lap. Young earned the pole position point for the weekend and will be hunting for a podium finish on Sunday.