Yoshimura Suzuki team-mates Martin Cardenas and Roger Hayden both had podium finishes at the AMA Pro Superbike Championship second round at Road America in Elkhart Lake at the weekend, with Hayden leaving the event tied for the series lead.
With more than two months since the first round at Daytona International Speedway in March, Yoshimura Suzuki’s Cardenas came into the weekend ready to race. On Saturday, he got a good start in the 13-lap event and piloted his Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000 to a third-place result. On Sunday, Cardenas again got a good start and was in second for the first half of the race when it began to rain. The AMA restarted the race wet but because the rain was on-and-off, Cardenas went with slick tires. He got back out in second, but the rain picked-up on the last few laps and the Colombian wound up finishing seventh.
“On Saturday, my position was good but I would like to have been better,” said Cardenas. “In the dry on Sunday, I felt good and strong. Then the AMA stopped the race and the rain came in. They restarted the race and I was running second when the big rain hit the track and I slowed because I thought they were going to stop they race, but apparently not. It’s a shame it ended up like that. Now we go to Barber, and I’ve had good results there so I’m looking forward to that track. The Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000 is working good, so I’m hoping for a good race and good results.”
Yoshimura Suzuki team-mate Hayden admittedly struggled at Road America. The Kentucky native ran in the top-five in Saturday’s race and finished fourth. On Sunday, Hayden was again running fourth when the rider in front of him went down just before the race was rain delayed. After the restart, Hayden – like his team-mates and most of the field - donned slicks and finished the rain-impacted race in third.
“It was pretty good,” said Hayden. “I really don’t deserve third place. I got lucky when the rider in front of me crashed earlier. With the off-and-on rain, I was just glad to finish the race on two wheels, it was kind of sketchy at the end; I’m pretty disappointed about that. But I will take the points and look forward to the next race at Barber.”
Rounding out the Yoshimura Suzuki crew, Chris Clark celebrated two solid races. On Saturday, the Las Vegas native got a top-10 start and finished sixth. Then on Sunday, he turned in solid laps before the rain and was running fifth. After the restart, Clark took advantage of the weather and wound up finishing fourth.
“It was definitely an experience, that’s for sure,” said Clark. “I’ve really been focusing on the rest of the season as a whole. The Yoshimura Suzuki crew did a great job, so I have to thank the team for a positive weekend overall. On Sunday, fortunately, my crew was able to make a decision that benefitted us for the restart. I started seventh and then got up to fourth. But then it was just pouring rain and I could hardly see, so I just tried to hold on and not take too many risks. I think at Barber, we’ll have another good result because the Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000 is working well, so I’m looking forward to it.”
Yoshimura Suzuki Factory Racing’s next event is the third round of the 2014 AMA Pro Superbike Championships during the weekend of June 21 - 22, at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama.
2014 Road America Superbike Results, Race 1: 1. Cameron Beaubier, 2. Josh Hayes, 3. Martin Cardenas (Yoshimura Suzuki), 4. Roger Hayden (Yoshimura Suzuki), 5. David Anthony, 6. Chris Clark (Yoshimura Suzuki), 7. Chris Fillmore, 8. Chris Ulrich, 9. Cory West, 10. Jason Farrell.
2014 Road America Superbike Results, Race 2: 1. Josh Hayes, 2. David Anthony, 3. Roger Hayden (Yoshimura Suzuki), 4. Chris Clark (Yoshimura Suzuki), 5. Chris Fillmore, 6. Larry Pegram, 7. Martin Cardenas (Yoshimura Suzuki), 8. Bernat Martinez, 9. Trent Gibson, 10. Francois Dumas. Airwaves Racing gears up for Oulton Park outing