AND AMA SBK SERIES
Rockstar Makita Suzuki Factory Racing celebrated the end of the 2008 AMA Superbike season in true championship-winning style by sweeping the AMA Superbike podium one-two-three at the final round at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California, on Sunday afternoon.
Six-time AMA Superbike Champion Mat Mladin won the 28-lap race, which means his career wins number 72 and this is his third win at Laguna Seca. Additionally, Mladin picked up his 55th career pole position this weekend.
Newly-crowned AMA Superbike Champion Ben Spies finished second in the Laguna Seca race. Overall, three-time AMA Superbike Champion Spies has 10 wins for the year and eight additional podium finishes.
Rounding out the all-Rockstar Makita Suzuki podium was Tommy Hayden in third place. This result marks Hayden's ninth AMA Superbike podium of the year, in spite of missing six races because of injury. In the overall championship points standings, Spies finished first, Mladin finished second and Hayden finished eighth.
"It was a good race for us overall and it was nice to get a win at this track, in particular. I got a good start on the Rockstar Makita Suzuki GSX-R1000 and I just put my head down and ran some good laps. I'm excited to get another win at Laguna Seca - I guess I've finally got this place figured out after 13 years. It's fantastic for Suzuki to get up here one-two-three and I'm looking forward to next year and hopefully a fair series."
"I didn't get off the start like I wanted to, but that sort of made it a fun race because I had to make a lot of passes to get up front. By the time I got into second place, I could see the pace Mat was running and I could see the gap and I knew I wasn't super-human so I just decided to have some fun out there. It was a good race; I just didn't have enough for the win today. Congratulations to my Rockstar Makita Suzuki team mates for a good race today and it's a great way for Suzuki to finish the season. It says a lot about Suzuki and it says a little about the three of us too."
"It was a pretty good race. I got another great start on the Rockstar Makita Suzuki GSX-R1000 and I just tried to settle into a rhythm. Then Mat came by and I tried to latch on to him and stay with him for as long as I could, which wasn't very long. A little bit later Ben came by and then Jordan Suzuki's Aaron Yates. Aaron and I had a battle for a while, then I got by him and just tried put in some good laps and bring home another podium finish for Rockstar Makita Suzuki."
1. Mat Mladin (Rockstar Makita Suzuki) 2. Ben Spies (Rockstar Makita Suzuki) 3. Tommy Hayden (Rockstar Makita Suzuki) 4. Aaron Yates (Jordan Suzuki) 5. Neil Hodgson (Honda) 6. Eric Bostrom (Yamaha) 7. Miguel Duhamel (Honda) 8. Jason DiSalvo (Yamaha) 9. Jordan Szoke (Kawasaki) 10. Chris Peris (Yamaha)
The final round of AMA Superstock at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca saw newly-crowned 2008 AMA Superstock Champion Aaron Yates take the win after a red flag caused a lengthy race delay on Sunday afternoon in Monterey, California.
This season-ending event saw Yates collect his fifth pole position of the year, his fifth win of the year and 10 podium finishes.
Team M4 EMGO Suzuki's Blake Young followed Yates home in second place. For Young, this AMA Superstock season saw him capture one win and five additional podium finishes which were good enough for him to finish up the season in fourth place overall.
Rounding out the all-Suzuki podium was Yates' Jordan Suzuki team mate Geoff May in third position. This was May's fifth AMA Superstock podium of the season - two of which were wins - and he ended up in second place overall behind Yates in the championship tally.
"The race was good. In the first part, I kind of felt uncomfortable and I was running around in fourth, sort of struggling a bit with grip. And then we had the red flag. In the re-start, I knew Blake's bike would be a missile on the straights and there aren't many places to pass so I didn't want to mess with that. So I just put the hammer down and put my head down and tried to go as hard as I could. There was no pressure on me because we already won the championship so I really was able to relax and enjoy the race."
"The first part of the race was pretty good. I got a decent start on the M4 EMGO Suzuki GSX-R1000 and I led some. But then we had a red flag and spent part of the day sitting around, which gave me some time to think about the race and what I wanted to do. In the re-start Aaron got a good start and just put the hammer down right away. I just tried to ride as hard as I could and that helped me bring home second for the M4 EMGO Suzuki guys."
"I just tried to have fun with the race today and ride my best on my Jordan Suzuki GSX-R1000. I rode as hard as I could but I just didn't have it today. Aaron took off like a rocket and I rode as hard as I could and I'm just happy to bring home third for the Jordan Suzuki team. I've had some bad luck here at Laguna Seca in the past and it's good to get a podium here."