Suzuki's Hayden Takes SuperBike Win on Sunday at Infineon Raceway
SONOMA, Calif. (May 15, 2011) – Suzuki’s Tommy Hayden claimed his first AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike victory in Sonoma on Sunday at the West Coast Moto Jam.
The win ended Josh Hayes’ (Yamaha) recent domination on the Sonoma Valley road course. Hayes has won four of the last six SuperBike events at Infineon Raceway, including a victory on Saturday.
“My bike was a handful today,” said Hayes. “I was trying so hard because Tommy wouldn’t leave me alone. I did the best I could all the way through the end. I wanted to beat him really bad, but he did a really good job. I hated to lose the streak.”
Hayden took the lead on lap 17 of the 22-lap feature and went on to take the checkers by 1.925 seconds over Hayes. The win marked Hayden’s sixth career SuperBike victory and his third AMA Pro Road Racing win in Sonoma (SuperSport, 2005; Superstock, 2003). Hayden’s Suzuki teammate, Blake Young, was third.
“I’m really happy about this one. I put a lot of thought into this race and a lot of preparation, and really wanted to redeem myself here after the last few years at this race,” said Hayden. “It feels really good to come in here and get this. Josh kept me honest and didn’t make it easy on me.”
Young entered the weekend leading the AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike point standings, but leaves the Sonoma Valley in third (99). Hayes leads the standings by just six points over Hayden (107-101).
Pole-sitter Jason DiSalvo (Ducati) posted a repeat victory in AMA Pro Daytona SportBike, leading 13 of 22 laps in the main event. It was a hard-fought win, as DiSalvo, second-place finisher Danny Eslick (Suzuki) and Josh Herrin (Yamaha), third, exchanged the lead numerous times before DiSalvo took the lead for good on lap 10. The race was stalled for a 27-minute red flag on lap 5 due to a brief period of rain.
“All my experience from the 22 laps yesterday was leading at the front, and that’s what I was used to. I wasn’t used to having Josh (Herrin) or Danny (Eslick) blocking my sight in a few corners, and I had to get used to that,” said DiSalvo, who posted his first Sonoma victory on Saturday. “Once I got out to the head of the pack, it brought me back to yesterday and I got back in the rhythm and got back in that zone.”
Benny Solis (Honda) completed a sweep in Motorcycle-Superstore.com SuperSport with a 12.5-second victory over Tomas Puerta (Yamaha) in the 18-lap feature. Solis, who posted his first AMA Pro Road Racing win on Saturday, took the lead from Puerta on lap 6 and never looked back. Travis Ohge (Yamaha) was third, marking his first AMA Pro Road Racing podium finish.
“I got a good start, but Tomas got a better start,” said Solis. “My plan was to stay behind Tomas for a bit and see if I could learn anything and win at the end. Once I saw that he made a mistake, it was my time to go and I put my head down and I was able to build up a good gap.”