The 1993 Daytona 200 was one of the most exciting last-lap duels in the race’s history. Eddie Lawson, in his final American motorcycle race victory, outgunned Russell to the line in one of the closest Daytona 200 races ever. Duhamel finished third. Lawson credited the power of his special factory Yamaha (wearing Vance & Hines colors) with helping him earn the win. The two leaders came upon Chuck Graves in the chicane on the final lap. Graves’ bike was sputtering, running out of fuel. Russell took the time to turn around and give Graves the one-fingered salute for getting in his way. To this day Graves maintains if Russell hadn’t messed around with flipping him off Scott would have beaten Eddie. Notice the lack of a backdrop on the press conference podium. Just a plain wall.
This is a photo of GP racer Alan Scott signing autographs at a WERA Formula USA race in the early 1990s. In 2009 something happened in Motorcycle Grand Prix racing that hadn’t happened in 19 years and Alan was part of that unique stat. Last year former World Champion Nicky Hayden and Colin Edwards represented the United States in the premier MotoGP class, while Stevie Bonsey raced the 250cc class and Cameron Beaubier rode as a rookie in 125cc. It was the first time American riders raced in all three classes of MotoGP competition since 1990 when four Americans rode in the premier 500cc category, including World Champion Wayne Rainey. John Kocinski won the 250cc World Championship in his first attempt, and Scott raced in 125cc.
SONOMA, Calif. (April 1, 2010) — Yamaha riders Josh Hayes and Tommy Aquino posted the top times on Thursday as nearly 15 riders hit the track for an AMA Pro Road Racing test session, hosted by Team Graves Yamaha, at Infineon Raceway.
Hayes (Team Graves Yamaha) recorded the top time for American SuperBike on Thursday over the 12-turn, 2.22-mile road course at 1 minute, 36.72 seconds, while teammate Aquino was quickest in Daytona SportBike at 1:39.29.
The teams are testing in advance of the West Coast Moto Jam, May 14-16, in the Sonoma Valley.
Fourteen riders from eight teams, including Rockstar Makita Suzuki, Michael Jordan Motorsports and Pat Clark Motorsports attended the test, which concludes on Friday.
Hayes was followed by Rockstar Makita Suzuki teammates Blake Young (1:36.78) and Tommy Hayden (1:37.37). Hayes claimed his first Superbike win at Infineon Raceway last year; the first Superbike win for a non-Suzuki rider in Sonoma since 2006.
In Daytona SportBike, Aquino was followed by teammate Josh Herrin (1:39.81) and Steve Rapp (1:40.12, Team Latus Motorsports).
Testing continues on Friday, as the track opens its gates for free to race fans for Two-Wheel Thunder. In addition to testing, the day will also feature a question-and-answer session with riders during the lunch break at noon, as well as Supermoto USA and TTXGP electric motorcycle demonstrations, weather permitting.
The West Coast Moto Jam will feature the best in two wheel racing action with AMA Pro Racing and TTXGP electric motorcycles on the road course, as well as Supermoto USA, motocross and flat track events. For more information, visit www.infineonraceway.com/AMA or call 800-870-RACE.
AMA Pro Road Racing Series Test Session
Infineon Raceway, Sonoma
The top times from Thursday’s test session over the 12-turn, 2.22-mile road course at Infineon Raceway. Unofficial times provided by AMA Pro Road Racing:
- Josh Hayes (Yamaha) 1:36.72
- Blake Young (Suzuki) 1:36.78
- Tommy Hayden (Suzuki) 1:37.37
- Ben Bostrom (Yamaha) 1:37.48
- Jake Zemke (Suzuki) 1:37.61
- Larry Pegram (Ducati) 1:37.63
- Brett McCormick (Suzuki) 1:38.64
- Chris Clark (Yamaha) 1:41.51
- Tommy Aquino (Yamaha) 1:39.29
- Josh Herrin (Yamaha) 1:39.81
- Steve Rapp (Ducati) 1:40.12
- Dave Westby (Yamaha) 1:40.90
- Clinton Seller (Yamaha) 1:41.17
- Tyler Odom (Honda) 1:45.89
Doug Polen (center) celebrates his victory in the AMA 600 Supersport race at Mid-Ohio in 1987. Joining Polen is second-place Thomas Stevens (left) and a young Donald Jacks (right). This was the first year of the 600 Supersport Championship as part of AMA Pro Racing’s national road race program. Polen won all, but a single race in the series that year on his way to winning the title. Stevens was the other winner that year, taking a surprise victory at Road Atlanta and finishing second in the series. Jacks was third in the final standings. All three riders were on Honda CBR6000s, the dominant bike of that year’s championship.
Gerald Rast races his cool little Honda 125 GP bike at Gateway International in June of 1986. Gerald was part of the MCRA leadership in those days and he let me stay at his house he shared with another racer once or twice when I covered races down there. I seem to remember that Gerald was a engineer at McDonnell Douglas.
I can’t swear to it, but I think Gerald almost caused me a major crash at IRP in 1980. I was racing my first WERA road race event; this was before the days of rider schools. So I went out on the track for my first practice session with maybe 100 other riders. My buddy Jim Knipp told me to find a rider who was just a little faster than me and follow him.
I was riding my ‘78 Suzuki GS750 and went past this guy on a little green bike coming out of turn one. He passed me back going into turn two so I latched on to his rear tire. We went through right handers turns two and three and then when we flicked it back left on the tighter turn four I hung right in there with the little green bike. Suddenly I hit the engine case on the Suzuki. It slid then caught and nearly high-sided me.
After practice I was talking to Jim and told him what happened. He asked me who I was following and about then the little green bike came by and I told Jim “That was the guy.” Jim patiently explained to me that a 750 production bike should never try to follow a 125GP bike through a turn.
In retrospect I bet the rider on the little green bike was Gerald.