JOSH HAYES GRABS NO. 10
Elena Myers finished fifth at Mid-Ohio after challenging Boca Raton resident, Stefano Mesa, for fourth following a red flag (photo courtesy: AMA Pro Racing Media)
Hayes fell well short of the feat in 2011, taking just three wins en route to his second consecutive title. The Monster Energy Graves Yamaha ace has been in peak form in '12, however, notching up ten wins already with several races remaining, but he was pushed to the brink to double at the Buckeye SuperBike Weekend by the resurgent Roger Hayden on the National Guard Jordan Suzuki GSX-R1000.
Hayes found himself embroiled in an early dogfight with Hayden and Yamaha teammate Josh Herrin, who actually led in the race's early stages. The trio became a duo on lap 7 of 21 when Herrin ran wide on the brakes at the end of the back straight. Once he lost the rear wheel of Hayes to measure off of, Herrin had no chance to run the lead pace and quickly drifted back into the clutches of a charging Blake Young.
"I was pretty sure (Hayden) would try on the last lap at the end of the back straight. I was pretty slow in the middle of the Keyhole to make sure I didn't spin up and make a mistake on the exit. I felt like I got out of there pretty good, but probably because I was slow in the middle, it allowed him to do the same thing behind me. When he came by he was moving pretty quick; I was actually surprised he got it stopped as well as he did. Whenever I came back up the other side of him I didn't know if I was going to be able to get him. I wasn't trying to bump him but I was trying to crowd him a little bit. All I needed was an instant for him to get off the throttle to get in there. It worked out and at that point it was just ride around the inside line of the racetrack to the finish line.
"I'm really glad I was able to pull it off. It's fun. It was exciting racing and I'm glad to come out on top of one of those."
The battle for third didn't rage long though -- Young crashed out of the fight on lap 9, losing the front of his Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000 in the keyhole as his faltering title campaign suffered a huge hit.
Hayden swung by on lap 16 before Hayes powered by on the straight and then made what he hoped to be a decisive assault on the race's final lap, diving by deep on the brakes at the end of the back straight.
The win was Hayes' 27th SuperBike triumph, just one behind Ben Spies for third all-time.
AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike
Cameron Beaubier of the Y.ES./Graves/Yamaha team won the Sunday AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Beaubier took his third win of the year by outlasting the early drama, then dropping the hammer in the last few laps to win by 0.779 of a second over yesterday’s winner, Dane Westby of M4 Broaster Chicken Suzuki, and the resurgent Bobby Fong of the Meen Motorsports team.
Beaubier kept rising to the lead in the multi-rider pack that included Westby, Fong, Martin Cardenas of GEICO Suzuki, Jake Zemke (Ducshop Ducati), Tommy Hayden (Y.E.S. /Graves /Yamaha) and Jason DiSalvo (Latus Motors Racing Triumph).
“My team gave me an awesome bike and I’m doing everything I can after my injury to get into shape and win some races,” said Beaubier, who was injured in an off-track scooter accident but quickly regained his form despite plenty of surgical metal still in his knee. "Cam" has won three of the last four AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike races.
AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com SuperSport
Dustin Dominguez swept the AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com SuperSport class at Mid-Ohio, winning Sunday’s race, before effectively winning Sunday’s race twice. After a bad start, Dominguez on the Latus Motors Racing Triumph Daytona 675 ran through the top ten and moved into the lead, only to have the race red-flagged on lap 6.
After another rough start following the clean up, Dominguez ran through the field yet again. When he passed James Rispoli (Orient Express Celtic Racing) for the lead, it seemed as if Dominguez would pull away. Rispoli was able to hang tight, though, along with Hayden Gillim (RoadRace Factory/Red Bull). As the last lap began, less than half a second covered the top three.
Dominguez was able to put together a very clean final lap and Rispoli couldn’t mount a passing move for the lead on the final time around the circuit. The Oklahoman held on for the win by 0.486.
“The last couple of laps I had a strategy, I wasn’t going to show all my cards until the last lap and it worked,” said Dominguez, who was the class of the field this weekend.
With his double, Dominguez moved into a tie with Jake Lewis (Riders Discount Vesrah Suzuki) in the AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com SuperSport East division points. Stefano Mesa (Kneedraggers.com Yamaha) held off Elena Myers (Suzuki SportbikeTrackgear.com) for fourth place as Mesa earned another quality finish. Myers ran especially strong after the red flag.
AMA Pro Vance & Hines XR1200 Series
Bartel's Harley-Davidson's Tyler O’Hara got his revenge following two straight victories on the part of title rival Kyle Wyman with a hard-earned win in Sunday's AMA Pro Vance & Hines XR1200 Series 11-lapper at Mid-Ohio.
The race took shape in the usual XR1200 fashion, with O'Hara, KLR Group/Vesrah Racing's Wyman, and MOB Racing's Michael Barnes all mixing it up in the lead group, each man taking their turn at the front as they jockeyed for the checkered flag.
While Wyman led early, polesitter Barnes actually looked to be O'Hara's biggest worry throughout the bulk of the race. However, Wyman made a Turn 1 dive under Barnes on the contest's final lap and set off after O'Hara but the title leader proved too strong on the brakes to overcome.
Wyman took second just 0.135 seconds back while Barnes accepted a very close third, 0.352 seconds removed from the win.
Race winner O'Hara said, "These last couple weekends, I've kind of had to play it perfect but I haven't gotten the result. This weekend we came out and we were a little off at the beginning but made a huge turnaround with the bike setup and made a bunch of changes. We just made it to where I could feel comfortable and run with these boys. They had a blistering pace yesterday and the main goal was to get a front row start and be there at the end of the race.
The AMA Pro Road Racing series will join the superstars of the MotoGP World Championship for the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on July 27-29 in Monterey, California. For tickets and information about the Big Kahuna Miami, scheduled for September 21 - 23, 2012 at Homestead-Miami Speedway, visit http://www.m1powersports.com/big-kahuna-miami/.