Team Yoshimura Suzuki's Mat Mladin claimed his seventh AMA Superbike victory of the year with a start-to-finish win in today's Elkhart Lake 10th round at Road America in Wisconsin.
The five-time AMA Superbike Champion and current series leader crossed the line on his GSX-R1000 almost 6.5 second clear of team mate and current series number two Ben Spies with Aaron Yates fifth on his Yoshimura Suzuki.
"It was a good race for us," said Mladin from the podium. "I'm glad it stayed dry for everyone and I hope we put on a good show. This year the new Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000 is working really well for us and it's a shame that we had a wet race yesterday, though we still got on the podium. I'd like to thank my crew because we've had some issues this weekend and they got the GSX-R sorted for us so we could get the win today."
In Friday afternoon's initial qualifying session, Mladin took his 43rd career pole position and his sixth one of the year by setting a track record-breaking best lap of 2.12:553 seconds. Team mates Spies and Yates were gridded second and third respectively with Spies posting a best time of 2.13:345 and Yates a 2.14:235 in Saturday's session.
Sunday's 16-lap Superbike race got started and then was almost immediately red flagged from a downed rider. A complete restart resulted in Mladin out front and he gradually created a gap and led the whole race to take the win. "I got the holeshot on the second start, but I was in the lead anyway so it doesn't matter," said Mladin of the red flag.
Like Mladin, Spies got a good start on his Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000. For the first half of the race, he was in a solid fourth then moved up into third. Then, on the last lap, he made an aggressive pass and took second.
"It wasn't so much that I was chasing down the guys in front of me as I was trying to get away from the guys behind me," laughed Spies after the race. "I'd really like to thank my guys for working so hard this weekend. I crashed twice in yesterday's Superbike race and I haven't made things easy on them."
Yates got a bad start after the red flag and was back in 12th place on the first lap. But he pushed his Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000 hard and made his way up through the field.
Said Yates, who earlier in the day claimed victory and the series lead in the Superstock class: "I don't know if I was tired from the Superstock win or what, but I was pretty far back and I knew I had to put my head down and push hard to get up to the front. Now I'm just looking forward to Laguna Seca next month and getting back on the podium."
1. Mat Mladin (Suzuki)
2. Ben Spies (Suzuki)
3. Jake Zemke (Honda)
4. Eric Bostrom (Ducati)
5. Aaron Yates (Suzuki)
6. Josh Hayes (Kawasaki)
7. Kurtis Roberts (Honda)
8. Steve Rapp (Suzuki)
9. Lee Acree (Suzuki)
10. Clint McBain (Suzuki)
Team Yoshimura Suzuki's Aaron Yates won his second AMA Repsol Superstock race of the season at Road America and moved into the lead in the championship chase.
"I was just trying to stay focused and go forward," said Yates. "All weekend we've been working on getting me more comfortable on the Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000 with tyres that have been sliding around a bit."
He started his Superstock weekend with a good qualifying session on Saturday. After posting a best lap time of 2:15.420, the Georgia native came away with the second spot on the starting grid.
He said: "I went out on a new race tyre for the first time and got a good lap. But I really wanted to get pole position for the point and for Suzuki. It's going to be a good race tomorrow."
He took the lead immediately but was unable to keep it and for most of the 10-lap race diced for second and third positions. Then, with just a few laps remaining, moved into second place, and in a daring last-lap move, made the pass for the lead and held it until the chequered flag.
"All week in practice, I'd gotten hooked up with second-place finisher Geoff May. He was going pretty fast and I knew I would be racing him," said Yates. "I was pushing my Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000 so hard to catch him and then I couldn't decide if I could pass him and make it stick. But I caught up to him and went into the turn a little slower and it worked out real good. I tried to do everything right and not spin my tyre too much and lose my drive."
1. Aaron Yates (Yoshimura Suzuki)
2. Geoff May (M4 EMGO Suzuki)
3. Jason Disalvo (Yamaha)
4. Roger Hayden (Kawasaki)
5. Tommy Hayden (Kawasaki)
6. Michael Barnes (M4 EMGO Suzuki)
7. Aaron Gobert (Yamaha)
8. Steve Rapp (Jordan Suzuki)
9. Damon Buckmaster (Yamaha)
10. Jacob Holden (Suzuki)
Team Yoshimura Suzuki's Ben Spies raced to fifth place on his Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R600 in Sunday's AMA 600 Supersport race at Road America in Elkhart Lake.
"We're struggling a little bit and I want to thank my guys for working so hard this weekend," said the young Texan. "The Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R600 is a good bike and I think that with the next month off before Laguna, we can put something together and be more competitive.
"The 600 race was a little rough. I crashed in the Superbike race yesterday in the wet and it hurt a little to tuck in today. But overall, it didn't really affect my lap times," he added.
1. Tommy Hayden (Kawasaki)
2. Roger Lee Hayden (Kawasaki)
3. Jason Disalvo (Yamaha)
4. Aaron Gobert (Yamaha)
5. Ben Spies (Yoshimura Suzuki)
6. Geoff May (M4 EMGO Suzuki)
7. Damon Buckmaster (Yamaha)
8. Chris Peris (Yamaha)
9. Robert Jensen (Yamaha)
10. Shawn Conrad (Kawasaki)
Source: Team Suzuki Press Office