The season-ending round of the 2014 AMA Pro Superbike Championships was a cause for celebration for Yoshimura Suzuki Factory Racing as Roger Hayden turned in a spectacular ride in pouring rain to get the win in the first race of the weekend at Millville’s New Jersey Motorsports Park.
Then, in the final round’s second race, Hayden was joined by Yoshimura Suzuki team-mate Martin Cardenas on the podium, with the duo finishing second and third, respectively. Yoshimura Suzuki’s Chris Clark also gave a solid performance over the weekend, picking up two seventh-place results.
This weekend’s win was Hayden’s first with Yoshimura Suzuki and was the culmination of a truly inspired ride on a soaking track. He followed-that-up with an impressive second-place result on Sunday, after recovering from an off-track excursion and charging his way through the field to the podium. The latter was one of seven podium finishes for the Kentucky rider in 2014. Thanks to this weekend’s performance, Hayden finished second overall this year.
“I’m really happy with the way the season went,” Hayden said. “We’ve been consistent and fast and we were on the podium at just about every race. This was our first year together and I’m really proud of my team. I can’t thank Yoshimura and Suzuki enough for giving me this opportunity. This weekend was a good way to finish the season; I rode as hard as I could, every lap. This was my first time to finish second in points and I learned a lot this year. We can all be proud of this.”
Although Saturday’s wet race saw Cardenas crash and retire early, the Yoshimura Suzuki rider was back in full force on Sunday. He battled down to the wire with Hayden for the runner-up spot before finishing an extremely close third. This New Jersey result was Cardenas’ fourth AMA Pro Superbike podium of the season and saw him finish sixth overall in the series.
“This was a tough weekend,” said Cardenas. “The track is very physical. I wanted to finish a little higher on the podium on Sunday but third was the best I could do. I’m very happy for me and for the Yoshimura Suzuki team to finish on the box.”
Clark came into the 2014 season hoping to finish the series in the top five and he was more than successful, ending up fourth for the year. On top of that, Clark picked-up his first-ever AMA Pro Superbike podium this season. In addition to that, the Yoshimura Suzuki rider also notched four more top-five finishes for the season.
“Overall, it was a really incredible year,” Clark said. “I felt like we were finally going in the right direction and we became a lot more competitive. There were some changes with my Yoshimura Suzuki crew, our chemistry improved; and we were able to communicate really well. I have to thank the whole Yoshimura Suzuki team for the opportunity to race and for providing me with a great bike like the Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000.”
2014 New Jersey Superbike Results, Race 1:
1. Roger Hayden (Yoshimura Suzuki) 2. Josh Hayes 3. Larry Pegram 4. Sean Dwyer 5. Cameron Beaubier 6. Marcel Irnie 7. Chris Clark (Yoshimura Suzuki) 8. Cory West 9. Chris Ulrich 10. Taylor Knapp
2014 New Jersey Superbike Results, Race 2:
1. Josh Hayes 2. Roger Hayden (Yoshimura Suzuki) 3. Martin Cardenas (Yoshimura Suzuki) 4. Bernat Martinez 5. David Anthony 6. Jodi Christie 7. Chris Clark 8. Larry Pegram 9. Chris Ulrich 10. Taylor Knapp
Final 2014 Superbike Standings:
1. Josh Hayes – 285 2. Roger Hayden (Yoshimura Suzuki) – 231 3. Cameron Beaubier – 206 4. Chris Clark (Yoshimura Suzuki) – 176 5. David Anthony – 175 6. Martin Cardenas (Yoshimura Suzuki) – 147 7. Cory West – 124 8. Chris Fillmore – 119 9. Larry Pegram – 105 10. Bernat Martinez – 98