Ben Spies took the top podium step in Race 2 with an arm around Race 1 winner Noriyuki Hagam, and brit Ron Haslam 3rd.
Hannspree FIM Superbike World Championship, Round 1 Phillip Island
The Best Superbike Season Ever! Haga & Spies On Top Down Under
2009 World Superbike Kick Off at Phillip Island
Phillip Island, Sunday 1st March 2009 -Noriyuki Haga (Ducati Xerox) took his 1098R to the win in his first race for the factory Ducati squad in the opening round of the Hannspree FIM Superbike World Championship at Phillip Island, Australia. The Japanese rider got the better of German Max Neukirchner (Suzuki Alstare) on the final lap to score his 34th win. Race 2 saw a sensational maiden triumph for WSB rookie Ben Spies (Yamaha Italia) from Texas, who took his Yamaha R1 to the win over Haga. The Australian Round of the championship was watched by a record 69,300 spectators, 6% up on last year’s figure.
The Permanent 28 WSB Season Riders - nearly twice as many as in MotoGP this year. Wildcard riders at most rounds will increase the grid even further to a full 40 riders fielsat most Europen rounds. Click to go BIG.
Count Down to the Best WSB Season Ever
Phillip Island, AU, Feb. 27-Mar 1st 2009 - The 2009 Hannspree FIM Superbike World Championship switched up a gear on Thursday the 27th with the traditional pre-event media conference and official photos at the Phillip Island circuit, venue for this weekend’s opening round, which gets underway with practice and qualifying on Friday.
Given the interest in this year’s championship, the press conference was a crowded affair. 11 Superbike and 7 Supersport riders took the opportunity to chat with the national and international media about their chances for this year and their thoughts on this weekend’s race.
With the retirement of Troy Bayliss, his fellow Aussie Troy Corser has now, affectionately speaking, become the senior citizen of World Superbike and the Phillip Island lap record holder showed that he has lost none of the determination of his earlier years as he lines up for the debut season of German manufacturer BMW.
“Yes, who would have thought a few years ago that I would have been racing a BMW in World Superbike! It was a late start for us as I had to wait until my previous contract expired before I could test the bike, but we’ve made some good progress. Every time we’ve made a test, I’ve given them information and they’ve gone away and made some improvements, so fingers crossed we can keep doing that this year. Maybe for some people it’s a bit of a gamble, but I think I’ve got enough experience to get to the front.”
Max Biaggi faces a new challenge as well as he attempts to guide Aprilia back to Superbike success as the Italian manufacturer returns to the production-based series for the first time since 2002.
“The start of the season for me is different to last year and the year before that, because nothing was there when I started this new project with Aprilia. We had to make everything happen, and now we are trying to build this together. We have strong ambitions and want to try to make things happen this year. I love my team, they are great people, I pushed for them to come with me and be in the same team as years ago.”
All eyes will also be on American Ben Spies, who will be attempting to transform his AMA triumphs into similar results on the world stage for Yamaha.
“The team is really good, the bike was a big change in switching to Yamaha from another manufacturer, and the tyres are new. Even for Yamaha the bike is new, so it’s a big change for them too. It’s been going really good so far, but it’s going to be a tough year. There are a lot of fast guys around here and I’m used to racing pretty much one, now it’s ten who can win the title so it’s a really good series.”
After many years racing a four-cylinder Yamaha, Noriyuki Haga this season switches to a twin-cylinder Ducati. The Japanese rider explained the differences he has encountered so far in pre-season testing.
“The biggest difference is of course the engine characteristics, in acceleration especially. Turning for me is not so different so far, but the riding feels more smoothly and more comfortable. Because the bike is already ready for winning, always I have big pressure because I have to win this season.”
The Manifiicant Seven - the top 7 riders of the 7 factory teams. Click to go BIG.
The opening round of the 2009 championship sees seven official manufacturers present and thirty-one permanent riders enrolled in the series, all racing on Pirelli control tyres. Local riders have won 23 of the 35 world superbike races held at Phillip Island over 18 years, with Corser leading the way on seven wins, followed by Troy Bayliss (six) and Anthony Gobert (five). The other Phillip Island winners in this year’s field are Noriyuki Haga and Régis Laconi.
Eurosport (pan-European): Sunday 1 March, 17.00 SBK race 1 (delayed), 17.45 SBK race 2 (delayed). British Eurosport (UK): Saturday 28 February, 11.30 GMT Superpole (delayed). Sunday 1 March, 01.00 GMT SBK race 1 (live), 02.00 GMT Supersport (live), 04.30 GMT SBK race 2 (live). SpeedTV USA: 1st Race Sunday, 10am Eastern, 1pm Pacific, 2nd Race on Thurs 3rd.
Smrz Powers to the Front in Phillip Island Friday Qualifying
Friday 27th - Jakub Smrz powered to the top of the timesheets in first qualifying for the Australian Round of the 2009 Superbike World Championship at Phillip Island. The 25 year-old Czech rider was quickest around the spectacular 4.445 km circuit with a time of 1 minute 32.312 seconds on a ‘customer’ Guandalini Ducati, a fraction ahead of Noriyuki Haga, replacement for world champion Troy Bayliss in the factory Ducati Xerox team. An excellent third place was notched up by Britain’s Leon Haslam on a private Stiggy Racing Honda, while the Suzuki Alstare pairing of Max Neukirchner and Yukio Kagayama looked strong in fourth and fifth.
“For me, Phillip Island is almost the best circuit in the world. It is easy for me to make a good lap here. The bike is a good bike and 95% similar to last year’s so I have been able to get on the pace very quickly. For sure, I have a lot of confidence with the tyre, even in these hot conditions,” said Smrz.
The starting grid for Sunday’s two races will be assigned tomorrow with the new Superpole ‘knock-out’ formula for the top 20 qualified riders over three 12-minute sessions.
The first day of the 2009 campaign, which will see 14 rounds held in 5 continents, took place in ideal weather conditions, with air/track temperatures of 33°/55°C at the start of Q1. In the cooler conditions of the morning’s free practice session (25°/35°C), the quickest time was set by Ben Spies (Yamaha World Superbike) in 1’32”752. The afternoon session saw the Suzukis move to the front, while Spies finished in eighth place, behind Shinya Nakano, making his WSB debut for Aprilia, and Michel Fabrizio (Ducati Xerox). Max Biaggi’s eleventh place doesn’t reflect the true potential of the Italian rider as his time was set on used tyres to simulate a race distance.
As well as the return of Aprilia after seven years, today saw the first day of true championship activity for BMW in its debut season in Superbike. The German manufacturer finished the day in sixteenth position with Troy Corser and in twentieth with Ruben Xaus, but with the Australian just over a second off the pace of the provisional polesitter, the result is encouraging.
Today’s first qualifying session saw the top 14 riders separated by just under a second, with less than two between Smrz and Tommy Hill (Honda Althea), twenty-first on the provisional grid.
The first fallers of the new season were David Salom (Kawasaki Pedercini) and Ryuichi Kiyonari (Ten Kate Honda) in the morning session, with Luca Scassa (Kawasaki Pedercini), Corser and Shane Byrne (Sterilgarda Ducati) all going down in qualifying, but without any serious consequences.
Times: 1. Smrz J. (CZE) Ducati 1098R 1'32.312; 2. Haga N. (JPN) Ducati 1098R 1'32.569; 3. Haslam L. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 1'32.623; 4. Neukirchner M. (GER) Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 1'32.673; 5. Kagayama Y. (JPN) Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 1'32.704; 6. Nakano S. (JPN) Aprilia RSV4 1'32.928; 7. Fabrizio M. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1'32.932; 8. Spies B. (USA) Yamaha YZF R1 1'32.939; 9. Sykes T. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R1 1'32.971; 10. Kiyonari R. (JPN) Honda CBR1000RR 1'32.991; 11. Biaggi M. (ITA) Aprilia RSV4 1'32.995; 12. Laconi R. (FRA) Ducati 1098 RS 09 1'33.202; 13. Rolfo R. (ITA) Honda CBR1000RR 1'33.206; 14. Checa C. (ESP) Honda CBR1000RR 1'33.224; 15. Byrne S. (GBR) Ducati 1098R 1'33.317; 16. Corser T. (AUS) BMW S1000 RR 1'33.377;
FIM Supersport World Championship
The Supersport runners also got their 2009 campaign underway, with little change from the previous years as Hannspree Ten Kate Honda set the early pace. Quickest time of the day went to reigning champion Andrew Pitt, who powered to an impressive 1 minute 34.833 seconds; the other champion within the Dutch team’s ranks, Kenan Sofuoglu, was just 0.006 seconds behind. The provisional front row is completed by Frenchman Fabien Foret on the first Yamaha, and evergreen Australian Garry McCoy, who looked impressive on his home track with the three-cylinder Triumph. Eugene Laverty (Parkalgar Honda), McCoy e Massimo Roccoli (Intermoto Czech Honda) all had crashes today.
Times: 1. Pitt A. (AUS) Honda CBR600RR 1'34.833; 2. Sofuoglu K. (TUR) Honda CBR600RR 1'34.895; 3. Foret F. (FRA) Yamaha YZF R6 1'35.063; 4. McCoy G. (AUS) Triumph Daytona 675 1'35.431; 5. Crutchlow C. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R6 1'35.469; 6. Aitchison M. (AUS) Honda CBR600RR 1'35.589; 7. West A. (AUS) Honda CBR600RR 1'35.641; 8. Nannelli G. (ITA) Triumph Daytona 675 1'35.644.
Ben Spies commands Superpole in World Superbike with his first WSB race, first race on a Yamaha and first time at the Phillip Island race track. How stupid was the Suzuki MotoGP team for letting him gor? Stay tuned....
WSB Rookie Spies, Yamaha spices up Superpole at Phillip Island!
Max Biaggo on New Aprilia V4 2nd Quickest with a 4 Bike Brand Front Row!
Saturday 28th - Texan WSBK rookie Ben Spies (Yamaha World Superbike) powered to the first Superpole win of the season in an exciting opening round session at Phillip Island in Australia. The 24 year-old took the top slot on his YZF R1 machine with a time of 1 minute 31.069 seconds. In the new ‘knock-out’ formula, Italian Max Biaggi scored a second place grid slot, his best ever performance in Superpole, on the brand new Aprilia, the Italian manufacturer returning to Superbike after a seven-year break. The front row of the grid is completed by Britain’s Jonathan Rea (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda) and Jakub Smrz of the Czech Republic, top Ducati rider on a private Guandalini machine.
Spies, who had never even seen the Australian circuit before last week, set the first pole of his career in his first-ever WSBK race: “There was a lot of pressure on me today but first congratulations to these guys, I know how fast the lap time was and we all did a great job. The Superpole was really good, there was a lot of anticipation, a lot of nerves inside the pit box to get the first pole of the year. It’s going to be hard tomorrow, with 7 or 8 guys up front and the real race will start 8 laps from the end. Luckily we have a good starting spot, that’s all that matters and hopefully we can be there at the end. Just like Biaggi said, I was very surprised at how many people started doing 31s in the second session, we really had to grit our teeth in the last one and put together a good lap.”
Max Biaggi (Aprilia Racing) commented : “It’s a big sensation for me to come back after so many years to Aprilia with this new project, the bike is good already. We still have to see which is the best way to go but for now qualifying was very good and exciting . I don’t know about race pace for tomorrow but this is an encouraging start. When I saw everyone going 31s, I thought ‘wow, that is fast’. I had some trouble in the free practice before qualifying, we swapped bikes and it was not my favourite one but we made a great job.”
Jonathan Rea, who will be racing in only his second WSBK event tomorrow, declared : “Superbike for me is getting more and more exciting all the time, a big thanks to the team for helping me make the transition from Supersport so easy. I’ve got a lot of learning to do but every time I jump on the bike it’s getting better. The new structure of Superpole was really exciting, with everyone in the box thinking should I go or should I stay, but lucky for us we used the first qualifier in the second session and got into the top 8. I saw Ben’s lap time in the session before and it left me with a 31.3 with one qualifier left. We made a little mistake in the last run but I don’t think we can go much faster than that.”
Jakub Smrz was also delighted with his Superpole performance: “For us it is a very good start to the season because we didn’t test here like the other guys. Now I am very pleased with the bike especially because this morning we had some small problems, then in Superpole everything went better. It’s very nice to be ahead of the factory Ducatis but it’s only the start of the season and what is most important is to get a good result in the race.”
The exciting new Superpole formula saw the early elimination of four of the top 20 riders (Corser, Rolfo, Xaus and Hill). The two BMWs, which had performed well until then, were excluded after a conservative choice of tyre. The second run saw the elimination of Nakano, Kiyonari, Kagayama, Sykes, Haga, Neukirchner, Byrne and Parkes, with Ducati Xerox’s Noriyuki Haga the prize scalp.
Rea and Smrz headed the new generation of Superbike riders, the 22-year-old from Northern Ireland the best Honda in the timesheets, while his team-mate Carlos Checa from Spain also looks promising in seventh place. Row 2 will be made up of Michel Fabrizio (Ducati Xerox), Leon Haslam (Stiggy Racing Honda), Checa and Régis Laconi (DFX Ducati), while Haga faces an uphill struggle in the two races as he has to start from the fourth row of the grid.
Qualifying Times: 1. Spies B. (USA) Yamaha YZF R1 1'31.069; 2. Biaggi M. (ITA) Aprilia RSV4 1'31.402; 3. Rea J. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 1'31.596; 4. Smrz J. (CZE) Ducati 1098R 1'31.600; 5. Fabrizio M. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 1'31.837; 6. Haslam L. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 1'32.112; 7. Checa C. (ESP) Honda CBR1000RR 1'32.537; 8. Laconi R. (FRA) Ducati 1098 RS 09 1'32.649 … 9. Nakano S. (JPN) Aprilia RSV4 1'31.843; 10. Kiyonari R. (JPN) Honda CBR1000RR 1'31.860; 11. Kagayama Y. (JPN) Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 1'31.867; 12. Sykes T. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R1 1'31.881; 13. Haga N. (JPN) Ducati 1098R 1'31.907; 14. Neukirchner M. (GER) Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 1'31.916; 15. Byrne S. (GBR) Ducati 1098R 1'32.119; 16. Parkes B. (AUS) Kawasaki ZX 10R 1'32.719 … 17. Corser T. (AUS) BMW S1000 RR 1'32.873; 18. Rolfo R. (ITA) Honda CBR1000RR 1'32.997; 19. Xaus R. (ESP) BMW S1000 RR 1'33.152; 20. Hill T. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 1'33.363.
FIM 600ccc Supersport Qualifying
Kenan Sofuoglu took the pole slot for the opening World Supersport round. It was the 24-year-old from Turkey’s seventh career pole, and it came with a new circuit record of 1 minute 34.320 seconds. Honda have won five of the last six editions of the Australian Round but this time the opposition promises to be tougher. Second slot went to Spanish youngster Joan Lascorz, new signing for Kawasaki who have changed team and riders and who are aiming for the top. Reigning champion and last year’s winner Andrew Pitt lines up third in his home race, with Britain’s Cal Crutchlow (Yamaha) looking menacing on the outside of the front row. Team-mate Fabien Foret suffered a partial dislocation of his right shoulder in a fall and is at risk for tomorrow’s race. Garry McCoy (Triumph BE1), who had gone so well on the opening day, slipped from fourth to eighth behind Italian Michele Pirro (Yamaha Lorenzini).
Qualifying Times: 1. Sofuoglu K. (TUR) Honda CBR600RR 1'34.320; 2. Lascorz J. (ESP) Kawasaki ZX-6R 1'34.689; 3. Pitt A. (AUS) Honda CBR600RR 1'34.786; 4. Crutchlow C. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R6 1'34.875; 5. Laverty E. (IRL) Honda CBR600RR 1'34.962; 6. Foret F. (FRA) Yamaha YZF R6 1'35.063; 7. Pirro M. (ITA) Yamaha YZF R6 1'35.086; 8. McCoy G. (AUS) Triumph Daytona 675 1'35.187
Nori leads Jonthan Rea (65) and Regis Laconi (55).
Haga (Ducati) and Spies (Yamaha) kick-start new
WSB Careers & 2009 Season with wins at Phillip Island
Phillip Island, Sunday 1st March 2009 -Noriyuki Haga (Ducati Xerox) took his 1098R to the win in his first race for the factory Ducati squad in the opening round of the Hannspree FIM Superbike World Championship at Phillip Island, Australia. The Japanese rider got the better of German Max Neukirchner (Suzuki Alstare) on the final lap to score his 34th win. The second race saw a sensational maiden triumph for WSB rookie Ben Spies from Texas, who took his Yamaha R1 to the win over Haga. The Australian Round of the championship was watched by a record 69,300 spectators, 6% up on last year’s figure.
The first race, declared ‘wet’, was held on a totally dry track, and all riders opted for slicks but a few drops of rain did fall in the final stages.It was a dramatic start to the first race when a late entry into turn two by rider Leon Haslam, forced Max Biaggi to sit up, in turn pushing Ben Spies wide from a poor start of his pole positytion and off the track.
Having dropped back several positions, Spies then had to again avoid a coming together between Ruben Xaus and another rider, and in doing so went off track again. The American pole position starter found himself in 26th position with a lot of work to do. Spies put his head down and put in consistently fast laps, finishing the race one position off the points in 16th, and lapping at the end of the race at a similar pace to the race leaders Haga and Neukirchner.
The potential of the K9 Suzuki GSX-R was confirmed with third place for Yukio Kagayama, who finished ahead of Michel Fabrizio on the second Ducati Xerox machine. Spies, who started from pole, ended up on the gravel at the second turn, but returned to the track to finish just outside the points in sixteenth. Max Biaggi, second on the grid with the brand-new Aprilia RSV4 machine, finished in eleventh place. The other rookie manufacturer BMW, also had a positive debut after Troy Corser recovered from the fifth row to finish eighth, the Australian setting fastest lap of the race.
Noriyuki Haga (Ducati Xerox) : “One thing that I have is great experience because in 2005 I was in 16th and won a race, so now everybody knows it doesn’t matter where the start position is, we don’t need qualifying! I’m very happy for the win, I have just switched to Ducati, I already had four crashes with the bike, but our team did a great job. In the last two laps it started to rain a bit then on the last lap Max passed me but I put big pressure on him thinking where to pass him. He made a mistake and I won.”
Max Neukirchner (Suzuki Alstare) : “On the last lap I made a little mistake and that probably cost me the win. The last five laps Nori was in front and I could see that he had a bit better traction on the last corner but I caught him on the last lap and I said ‘I win, I win’ but it was too much and I had a small slide and that was it.”
Yukio Kagayama (Suzuki Alstare) : “I’m happy to get the podium, my last one was in 2007! Both for Max and me our starting positions were not so good, and too many riders caught me in the early laps. But I did a steady ride to third.”
Superbike Race 1: 1. Haga N. (JPN) Ducati 1098R 34'22.631 (170,677 kph); 2. Neukirchner M. (GER) Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 0.032; 3. Kagayama Y. (JPN) Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 5.347; 4. Fabrizio M. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 6.587; 5. Rea J. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 8.491; 6. Haslam L. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 8.523; 7. Laconi R. (FRA) Ducati 1098 RS 09 8.766; 8. Corser T. (AUS) BMW S1000 RR 11.589; 9. Smrz J. (CZE) Ducati 1098R 11.721; 10 Sykes T. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R1 11.761; 11. Biaggi M. (ITA) Aprilia RSV4 12.609; 12. Checa C. (ESP) Honda CBR1000RR 19.096; 13. Rolfo R. (ITA) Honda CBR1000RR 24.149; 14. Hill T. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 27.416; 15.Nakano S. (JPN) Aprilia RSV4 28.173; 16. Spies B.(USA) Yamaha YZF R1 28.235
Ben Spies (19) fights off Nori Haga (19)
World Superbike rookie Ben Spies proved to be an unstoppable combination with the new 2009 YZF-R1, as he he powered to a flawless victory in the second race of the opening round at Phillip Island today. Running at the front from the outset and fighting for top position with Ducati rider Noriyuki Haga, Spies rode a perfect race, the new R1 performed impressively as he kept the pace up to the very end for a well deserved victory.
The second encounter was all about Haga vs Spies as the Yamaha rider unleashed the R1’s potential. The duel went on until a few laps from the end when the Texan pulled out a slight advantage and powered to the flag. The runner-up slot put Haga, who turns 34 tomorrow, into the lead of the championship on 45 points. Britain’s Leon Haslam (Stiggy Racing Honda) had a great race for the final podium place, beating the two Ducatis of Règis Laconi (DFX) and Fabrizio to the line. The group also included Biaggi, who ran third for much of the race; on the final lap however the Italian slid off into the gravel, recovering to finish fifteenth. However Aprilia, on their return to SBK after six years, are already looking a competitive force.
Haga has posted a strong 45 points lead in the Champiosnhip with his excellent 1-2 finishes for the day. Spies goes to Qatar sitting fourth in the championship standings (only a single point from third), after the Phillip Island race weekend, he is also the first American to win a World Superbike race since fellow American Colin Edwards in 2002.
Ben Spies, National Superbike Champion, and now World Superbike race winner.
Ben Spies (Yamaha World Superbike) : “The first race was not picture perfect for us. The second one was really tough, we had a couple of goes in the lead and tried to break but couldn’t do it so I sat and watched Nori. We were strong in the first half but really slow in the back two corners and I couldn’t stay with him, then when the tyres went off we just went to the front with four to go and I put my head down. WSB was rough but good in the end, the new R1 was great in the first weekend for the big-bang motor. It’s such a new machine for the team, hopefully we can get more out of it but for sure it’s a front-running bike. WSB is so tight, people don’t understand how many fast riders there are here, and it was really great out there today.”
Noriyuki Haga (Ducati Xerox) : “I did a nice start again and then during the race I really enjoyed fighting with Ben. It was hard to pull away from him but in the last five laps my tyres were finished and I couldn’t push anymore and I just kept the second position. I think this weekend we did a good job except for qualifying and now I’m in the lead of the championship.”
Leon Haslam (Stiggy Racing Honda) : “It’s a big credit to the team, three months ago they were just building the bike. It’s the first round and we’re already on the podium. There’s been a big effort and we’ve kind of repaid all that effort. There was a bit of argy-bargy with Fabrizio, I had a tyre mark from him from the first lap and later on in the race we had a bit of a tussle but that’s what World Superbike is all about, it’s a fantastic result.”
Superbike Race 2: 1. Spies B. (USA) Yamaha YZF R1 34'20.457 (170,857 kph); 2. Haga N. (JPN) Ducati 1098R 1.286; 3. Haslam L. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 4.213; 4. Laconi R. (FRA) Ducati 1098 RS 09 4.490; 5. Fabrizio M. (ITA) Ducati 1098R 6.045; 6. Neukirchner M. (GER) Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 9.947; 7. Smrz J. (CZE) Ducati 1098R 10.174; 8. Kagayama Y. (JPN) Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9 12.100; 9. Rea J. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 12.742; 10. Sykes T. (GBR) Yamaha YZF R1 20.061; 11. Xaus R. (ESP) BMW S1000 RR 24.854; 12. Nakano S. (JPN) Aprilia RSV4 25.192; 13. Checa C. (ESP) Honda CBR1000RR 27.162; 14. Hill T. (GBR) Honda CBR1000RR 29.737; 15. Biaggi M. (ITA) Aprilia RSV4 30.036; 16. Rolfo R. (ITA) Honda CBR1000RR 38.458
Points (after 1 round of 14): 1. Haga (Ducati) 45; 2. Neukirchner (Suzuki) 30; 3. Haslam (Honda) 26; 4. Spies (Yamaha) 25; 5. Kagayama (Suzuki) 24; 6. Fabrizio (Ducati) 24; 7. Laconi (Ducati) 22; 8. Rea (Honda) 18; 9. Smrz (Ducati) 16; 10 Sykes (Yamaha) 12 etc. Manufacturers: 1. Ducati 45; 2. Yamaha 31; 3. Suzuki 30; 4. Honda 27; 5. Bmw 13; 6. Aprilia 9.
FIM 600cc Supersport World Championship
Kenan Sofuoglu (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda) won a superb opening World Supersport race in a three-way sprint to the line. The Turk, 2007 champion in the category, took the flag ahead of Australian riders Andrew Pitt (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda) and Anthony West (Stiggy Racing Honda). Honda, winners of the mid-range Supersport category for the last seven years, begin the new season with four CBR-RR machines in the top 4 places, with fourth going to Eugene Laverty (Parkalgar Honda) of Ireland. For 24 year-old Sofuoglu, the win is his eleventh in the series, while Honda celebrate their 63rd win out of 117 Supersport races. The Yamahas, which looked good in qualifying, finished fifth in the hands of Cal Crutchlow and seventh with Fabien Foret, who raced with a partially dislocated right shoulder following his crash on Saturday. Spain’s Joan Lascorz made his debut for Kawasaki with an encouraging seventh place. The new Triumph 675 also had a positive start, with Gianluca Nannelli finishing tenth and Garry McCoy fourteenth.
Supersport Results: 1. Sofuoglu K. (TUR) Honda CBR600RR 33'42.156 (166,18 kph); 2. Pitt A. (AUS) Honda CBR600RR 0.060; 3. West A. (AUS) Honda CBR600RR 0.153; 4. Crutchlow C. (GBR)Yamaha YZF R6 1.097; 5 Laverty E. (IRL) Honda CBR600RR 1.098; 6. Aitchison M. (AUS) Honda CBR600RR 3.631; 7. Foret F. (FRA) Yamaha YZF R6 5.023; 8. Lascorz J. (ESP) Kawasaki ZX-6R 9.540.
Points (after 1 round of 14): 1. Sofuoglu (Honda) 25; 2. Pitt (Honda) 20; 3. West (Honda) 16; 4. Crutchlow (Yamaha) 13; 5. Laverty (Honda) 11; 6. Aitchison (Honda) 10; 7. Foret (Yamaha) 9; 8. Lascorz (Kawasaki) 8.
Now in the Iron & Lace Garage! The factory Ducati Corse 1198R 09 World Superbike with big detailed screen saver size photos, with and without the fairing, and full technical specifications. CLICK HERE
Stoner Tops MotoGP Night Testing at Qatar
Qatar, March 1-3, 2009 - Ducati Corse's Casey Stoner finished up this week's 3-day night MotoGP team testing at the Losail Circuit in Qatar a full 1-sceond quicker than his closest rival. In the final day of the test when Casey set his quickest time, the radical new frameless GP09 machine was also fitted with a carbon fibre swingarm, the first for a MotoGP machine. The complete MotoGP testing report from Qatar is in the Tire Chatter column at right.
New FastDates.com Greeting Cards!
It's been nearly impossible for motorcycle enthusiasts to find cool motorcycle related greeting cards, but now through our new association with CafePress, a print-on-demand publisher, I am excitied to now offer you the first selection in a new line of official FastDates.com Calendars Greeting Cards. This first Card features our beautiful Calendar Kitten Tiffany Toth getting down for action behind the bubble of the incredible Ducati 1098S Tri Colore limited edition Superbike. Cards are printed on high quality card stock with a glassy front, measure a large 5x7 inches and come packaged (10) per box with envelopes. - Cheers! Jim Gianatsis
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Below - Just in case you can't get enough, here's one more look, of Tiffany who is featured in all 3 of our 2009 FastDates.com Calendars, and in some very sexy pictorials in Members Corner!
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Sports Illustrated Swimsuit 2009
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Sports Illustrated Swimsuit
2009 Sports Illustrated Magazine Swimsuit Edition
February 12th, 2009 - The 2009 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition magazine hit the newsstands on February 12th and continued to set the bar with the world's most beautiful supermodels photographed in nearly there swimsuits in exotic locations around the world by top fashion photographers. And in the case of the "Body Painting" section of the magazine, the girls actually wore nothing at all. Photography and models for the 2009 magazine shoot are also featured in the 2009 Sports Illustrated Calendars in the 13-inch and 15-inch edition available here on line through Amazon.com. You can also purchase the 2009 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition magazine by clicking on the cover above.
Our favorite SI models again this year include returning cover model Bar Rafaeli form Israel, Brooklyn Decker and Tori Praver from California. But we also wouldn't kick out of bed the other SI beauties- Kim Cloutier, Cintia Dicker, Lucia Dvorska, Esti Ginzburg, Jessica Gomez, Melissa Harlo, Jessica Hart, Julie Henderson, Damaris Lewis, Jarah Mariano, Ariel Meredth, Tori Praver, Hilary Rhoda, Daniela Sarahyba, Irina Shayk, Ann V and Jessica White.
Also making her return this year is sexy Indy Car winner Danica Patrick stripping down to her bare weight minimum for tech scrutinering We don't get to see Women's Tennis Association fomer #1 pro hottie Maria Sharapova since she's been side lined with a shoulder injury the past 12 months (but Maria still finds time to cash her $30 million a year in endorsement checks). But we do get to see in revealing swimwear and videos three of her hottest teen Russian opponents on the court: Daniela Hantuchova, Tatiana Golovin and Maria Kitilenko.
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Our kind of sand Bar, Bar Rafaeli that is...
PREVIEW: AMA / DMG 2009 National Roadracing Championship
170 Entries Usher in New AMA Pro Road Racing Era in Season-Opener at Daytona
Biggest Daytona 200 by Honda Entry in Four Years
Set to Make History in Inaugural Night Race
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (February 26, 2009) - A full field of motorcycles and international riders - including 84 AMA Pro DaytonaSportBike entries for the 68th annual Daytona 200 by Honda - is heading to Daytona International Speedway next week for the debut event of the new AMA Pro Road Racing series.
AMA Pro Road Racing's four series have attracted a combined total of 170 entries, including the biggest field in four years and one of the largest in decades for the Daytona 200 by Honda. The race will be part of AMA Pro Road Racing's historic opening weekend with the first night running of the Daytona 200 under the lights, Friday, March 6. The advent of the new Daytona SportBike class will also bring the Daytona 200 action back to the full 3.55-mile legendary Daytona road course for the first time since 2004.
The AMA Pro American Superbike division shares the spotlight with the Daytona SportBikes at Daytona and attracted a strong entry of 41 motorcycles for its debut 2009 race. A 15-lap American Superbike sprint at 3:30 p.m. highlights the racing on Thursday, March 5, while the Daytona SportBike Daytona 200 starts at 8 p.m. Friday night for 57 laps under the lights.
With AMA Pro Road Racing's pair of premier classes accounting for 125 of the 170 entries, the starting field in each race will be full of past, present and future legends of AMA Pro Road Racing. Former Daytona 200 winners Jake Zemke (No. 1x Erion Racing Honda CBR600RR), Steve Rapp (No. 15 Black Hole Racing Aprilia RSV) and reigning race champion Chaz Davies (No. 57 Factory Aprilia/Millennium Technologies Team Aprilia RSV) will join record five-time winner Miguel Duhamel (No. 17 Team Suzuki/Blackfoot/Picotte Racing Suzuki GSX-R600) in looking for another Daytona 200 victory.
600ccDaytona Under the Kight s on Friday Night
Top riders gunning for a first Daytona 200 win include factory Yamaha teammates Ben Bostrom (No. 1s Team Graves Yamaha YZF-R6) and Josh Hayes (No. 4 Team Graves Yamaha YZF-R6), who is looking to avenge 2008's heartbreak after what appeared to be a convincing victory was taken away when his motorcycle failed post-race inspection. Chris Peris (No. 10 Erion Racing Honda CBR600RR), Jamie Hacking (No. 88 Monster Energy/Attack Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R), teammates Jason DiSalvo (No. 40 M4 Suzuki GSX-R600) and Martin Cardenas (No. 36 M4 Suzuki GSX-R600) and Yamaha's young standouts Josh Herrin (No. 8 Team Graves Yamaha YZF-R6) and 16-year-old Tommy Aquino (No. 6 Team Graves Yamaha YZF-R6) will also be among the dozens of riders with a legitimate shot at victory.
Proven 600cc racing bikes from Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Kawasaki anchor the Daytona 200 entry list but the new Daytona SportBike class is home to a diverse lineup of motorcycles. Rapp and Davies are joined in the Aprilia camp by Hooters Aprilia teammates Shane Narbonne (No. 12 Hooters Aprilia RSV) and Ryan Elleby (No. 21 Hooters Aprilia RSV), Ty Howard (No. 67 Ridesmart Motorcycle Schools Aprilia RSV), Scott Jensen (No. 76 Black Hole Racing Aprilia RSV) and Ben Thompson (No. 97 Factory Aprilia/Millennium Technologies Team Aprilia RSV).
Buell is also well represented with six 1125Rs entered for Danny Eslick (No. 9 Bruce Rossmeyer's Daytona Racing/RMR Buell 1125R), Shawn Higbee (No.11 Higbee-Racing.com Buell1125R), Bryan Bemisderfer (No. 98 HDFR Buell 1125R), Latus teammates Josh Bryan (No. 45 Latus Motor Racing Buell 1125R) and Alan Schmidt (No. 54 Latus Motor Racing Buell 1125R) and Michael Barnes (No. 34 GEICO Powersports/RMR Buell 1125R). Barnes is recovering from a third metacarpal fracture hand injury from an early February testing accident but is using this weekend's CCS event to assess his readiness for the Daytona 200.
A pair of Ducati 848s are entered for Calvin Martinez (No. 20 Wisconsin Racing Ducati 848) and Gene Burcham (No. 94 GBR Motors Ducati 848) as well as two Triumph Daytona 675s for Mark Crozier (No. 14 Crozier Motorsports Triumph Daytona 675) and second-generation rider Justin Filice (No. 30 Bud Light Lime/R & B Motorsports Triumph Daytona 675), son of AMA Pro Hall-of-Famer Jimmy Filice.
Flag-to-flag coverage of the Daytona 200 by Honda will air on SPEED Friday, March 6, at 8:30 p.m. ET.
American Superbike Stars on Saturay Night
While the AMA Pro Daytona SportBike riders will shine in the Friday-night lights of the Daytona 200, the stars of AMA Pro American Superbike will take the spotlight on Thursday afternoon.
In addition to moonlighting in the 200 on their Yamaha Daytona SportBikes, Bostrom (No. 2 Yamaha Motor Corp. USA Yamaha R1) and Hayes (No. 4 Yamaha Motor Corp. USA Yamaha R1) will contest the full 2009 American Superbike season on Yamaha's latest R1 motorcycle. They will be among the American Superbike stars looking to kick off the year with a victory at Daytona and Bostrom and Hayes lead a seven-bike Yamaha American Superbike entry.
Another top threat is six-time defending Daytona American Superbike race winner Mat Mladin (No. 7 Rockstar/Makita Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000) who is looking for his second Daytona win in a row and fourth in five years. Mladin's teammates at Yoshimura Suzuki include quick Americans Tommy Hayden (No. 22 Rockstar/Makita Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000) and Blake Young (No. 79 Rockstar/Makita Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000).
Other Suzuki threats come from Jordan Suzuki, Roadracingworld.com/M4 and Team Hooters. The Michael Jordan-owned Jordan Suzuki effort includes bikes for Georgia-based riders Aaron Yates (No. 23 Jordan Suzuki GSX-R1000) and Geoff May (No. 54 National Guard Jordan Suzuki GSX-R1000), Chris Ulrich rides for M4 (No. 18 Roadracingworld.com Suzuki GSX-R1000) and Daytona 200 competitors Narbonne (No. 12 Hooters Suzuki GSX-R1000) and Elleby (No. 21 Hooters Suzuki GSX-R1000) are also on Team Hooters American Superbikes. In total, a class-high 25 Suzuki GSX-R1000s are entered in the American Superbike race.
Honda's charge is led by former World Superbike Champion Neil Hodgson (No. 100 Corona Extra Honda CBR1000RR) and Australia's Aaron Gobert (No. 96 AGR Inc. Honda CBR1000RR) who top a five-bike Honda entry.
A lone Buell and three Ducatis will also be in the hunt. Higbee (No. 11 Higbee-Racing.com Buell 1125CR) rides the Buell while Larry Pegram (No. 72 Foremost Insurance/Pegram Racing Ducati 1098R) is expected to be the pacesetter of the trio of Italian-made motorcycles.
The American Superbike race will be featured in the premiere of the new AMA Pro Prime Time on SPEED Saturday, March 21, at 11 p.m. ET (8 p.m. PT).
SuperSport Send Off
The Daytona 200 by Honda weekend also marks the debut of the new AMA Pro SuperSport class, which is AMA Pro's showcase of America's future motorcycle racing stars today. The proving ground series is reserved strictly for up-and-coming riders between the ages of 16 and 21 who compete on 600cc sport bikes that are only minimally modified from what you will find at your local Suzuki, Yamaha, Kawasaki, Honda and other motorcycle dealerships.
SuperSport is also divided into East and West Championships although the Daytona kick-off is a combined race that has attracted two dozen young up and comers. The green flag is scheduled to drop for the 12-lap SuperSport race at 2 p.m. on Thursday.
A second combined East/West race will be held later in the year at Heartland Park Topeka while a SuperSport Shootout Finale will be held during the season-ending AMA Pro Road Racing weekend back at Daytona in October.
New SunTrust Moto-GT Moniker
The fourth and final series in the 2009 AMA Pro Road Racing lineup is the renamed AMA Pro SunTrust Moto-GT class. It is the only class in AMA Pro Road Racing that features multi-class racing with teams of riders that share a single motorcycle in a race. The original SunTrust
MOTO-ST name has been slightly revamped to AMA Pro SunTrust Moto-GT, which reflects
some class adjustments and the fact that even more motorcycles are now eligible.
The biggest changes are that the competition is no longer strictly reserved for two-cylinder motorcycles and that the previous three classes have been narrowed to just two, making it easier for race fans to follow both the overall battle while watching a "race within a race." The former premier SST category has been renamed GT1 and will feature a wider mix of potentially more powerful multi-cylinder motorcycles.
The former GST and ST classes have been essentially replaced by GT2. Two-cylinder motorcycles remain the only type allowed in GT2, but variety is also part of the mix with several different types of bikes and engines eligible.
While things have been shaken up as far as classes and eligible motorcycles are concerned, the format of the racing has changed little. Team and multi-rider based, several riders share each competing bike and SunTrust Moto-GT is the only series in AMA Pro Road Racing that features rider changes during pit stops. SunTrust Moto-GT also features a variety of riders, from young up-and-coming talent to Hall-of-Famers like Jay Springsteen (No. 9 Pair-A-Nines Kawasaki Ninja 650R GT2) and former Daytona 200 winner John Ashmead (No. 37 Old Pros Racing Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R GT1).
The season-opening two-hour SunTrust Moto-GT race will be run at 4 p.m. on Friday, March 6.
Cool Contingency Cash
The total team support package for the 2009 season-opening Daytona 200 by Honda weekend, March 4 - 6, is the richest purse in the event's history with a total of $286,000 on the line.
The lucrative Daytona weekend, however, is just the kick-off event to potentially even more bonuses available to AMA Pro Road Racing competitors this season. More than $1.8 million in posted contingency awards from AMA Pro Road Racing and its proud contingency partners is up for grabs by eligible competitors this season.
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FIM ANNOUNCES IMMEDIATE CHANGES TO THE 2009 MOTOGP REGULATIONS TO REDUCE COSTS
Wednesday 18th February -
The Grand Prix Commission, composed of Messrs. Carmelo Ezpeleta (Dorna, Chairman), Claude Danis (FIM), Hervé Poncharal (IRTA) and Takanao Tsubouchi (MSMA), in the presence of Messrs Vito Ippolito (FIM President), Ignacio Verneda (FIM Sport Director), Javier Alonso (Dorna) and M. Paul Butler (Secretary of the meeting), in a meeting held on February 18 in FIM Headquarters in Mies, unanimously decided to introduce the following amendments to the Road Racing World Championship Grand Prix Regulations – immediate application.
1. From Czech GP, maximum 5 engines can be used in 8 races. No changing of parts will be permitted except daily maintenance.
2. Ceramic composite materials are not permitted for brakes disc or pads.
3. Launch control system is not permitted.
4. Electronic controlled suspension is not permitted.
5. Only 2 post race tests at Catalunya and Czech GP for development purposes using test riders only are permitted.
Casey Stoner / Ducati
Top 3 Days of MotoGP Night Testing at Losail
1 Second Quickest!
Tuesday, 03 March 2009
As the MotoGP Official Night Test came to a conclusion at midnight in Qatar on Tuesday it was Casey Stoner who sat proudly at the head of the timesheet.
Winner of the last two MotoGP races at the Losail International Circuit, including last year’s historical first ever floodlit Grand Prix, Casey Stoner showed his strength around the 5.38km desert track again on Tuesday night.
The night time practice visit to Qatar, the second preseason test for the 2009 MotoGP field, ended with Stoner setting the pace just as he did in the opening test of the year in Malaysia in February.
Stoner’s best effort of 1’55.744 was recorded shortly after 9pm on the 22nd of his 31 turns under the floodlights, the Australian completing far fewer laps than any of his rivals. The test saw him successfully debut a new carbon fibre swingarm on the Desmosedici GP9, though he was unable to undertake a race simulation and kept to short bursts on track as he rebuilds the strength in his left wrist, which was operated on over the winter.
Stoner crashed without consequence on turn two around ten minutes after setting his best time, but was back out on track within an hour.
Last year’s Qatar poleman Jorge Lorenzo (Fiat Yamaha) got closest to Stoner on the timesheet, though he was nearly a full second (0.989s) behind the Ducati rider, with his best time registered late in the evening. Lorenzo’s colleague Valentino Rossi completed the top three with a 1’56.972 effort as the only other rider to go round under the 1’57 mark, the Italian satisfied with a new electronics system on the Yamaha M1.
The top five was rounded off by Rizla Suzuki’s Chris Vermeulen, his best time arriving on the last of his 70 laps, and Stoner’s new team-mate for 2009 Nicky Hayden.
Also featuring in the top ten were Vermeulen’s Suzuki colleague Loris Capirossi, fastest Honda representative Randy de Puniet, factory Honda newcomer Andrea Dovizioso, the experienced Colin Edwards and San Carlo Honda Gresini’s Alex de Angelis.
There were also crashes for Capirossi on turn six, Niccolo Canepa at turn 13 and Yuki Takahasi at turn three, but all three riders were reportedly unhurt.
The next outing for the MotoGP riders is the Official MotoGP Test at the Jerez circuit in southern Spain which takes place on 28th & 29th March. They will then return to Qatar for the first Grand Prix of the year on 10th-12th April.
Qatar Night Test, Day 3
1. Casey Stoner, Ducati Marlboro Team - 1'55.744 (31)
2. Jorge Lorenzo, Fiat Yamaha Team - 1'56.733 (82)
3. Valentino Rossi, Fiat Yamaha Team - 1'56.972 (75)
4. Chris Vermeulen, Suzuki MotoGP - 1'57.224 (70)
5. Nicky Hayden, Ducati Marlboro Team - 1'57.225 (53)
6. Loris Capirossi, Suzuki MotoGP - 1'57.253 (42)
7. Randy De Puniet, LCR Honda MotoGP - 1'57.401 (77)
8. Andrea Dovizioso, Repsol Honda - 1'57.449 (74)
9. Colin Edwards, Monster Yamaha Tech3 - 1'57.515 (46)
10. Alex De Angelis, San Carlo Honda Gresini - 1'57.591 (61)
11. Toni Elias, San Carlo Honda Greini - 1'57.804 (66)
12. Mika Kallio, Pramac Racing - 1'57.938 (54)
13. Niccolo Canepa, Pramac Racing - 1'57.946 (50)
14. Yuki Takahashi, Scot Racing Team - 1'58.412 (61)
15. James Toseland, Monster Yamaha Tech3 - 1'58.786 (51)
16. Marco Melandri, Hayate Racing Team - 1'58.851 (73)
Pedrosa to Undergo Surgery on Arm and Knee
Tuesday, 03 March 2009
Back in Barcelona following his Qatar test crash, Dani Pedrosa will need an operation on his left arm on Wednesday to fit a screw in a fractured radius bone, with his injured left knee also in need of surgery.
Having had a full medical assessment at the USP Institut Universitari Dexeus clinic in his native Barcelona on Tuesday, as a result of his Monday night Qatar test crash, Repsol Honda’s Dani Pedrosa has been diagnosed with a fractured left radius (one of the bones in the forearm) and a severely cut and bruised left knee.
Pedrosa flew back to Spain on Tuesday and went straight to his trusted surgeon Doctor Mir’s clinic, where he was also operated on in December having originally injured his left knee last season in Australia. The knee has been further damaged and will require skin graft surgery.
His left arm, meanwhile, requires a supportive screw insertion in order to heal the fractured radius bone more rapidly than if left unsupported.
Pedrosa did not stay at the clinic overnight and will therefore return on Wednesday to go under the surgeon’s knife again. It is unclear as yet how this will affect his preseason preparations with just over a month to go before the first race of the year.
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2009 AMA Superbike Season Kicks off
Under the Lights March 6th
The 2009 AMA Pro Road Racing season will begin at Daytona the first weekend in March. The weekend will be highlighted by the first Daytona 200 by Honda under the lights, Friday, March 6, for the AMA Pro Daytona SportBike division. The Daytona kick-off will also feature AMA Pro American Superbike competition and races for additional AMA Pro Road Racing championships.
AMA Pro Racing is the premier professional motorcycle racing organization in North America, operating a full schedule of events and championships for a variety of motorcycle disciplines. From its Daytona Beach headquarters, the organization operates and manages AMA Pro Road Racing, which includes AMA Pro American Superbike, AMA Pro Daytona SportBike, AMA Pro SuperSport, AMA Pro SunTrust Moto-GT and the Red Bull AMA U.S. Rookies Cup in addition to the AMA Pro Flat Track Championship. Learn more about AMA Pro Racing at www.amaproracing.com.
DuHamel to Race Daytona
Miguel DuHamel , Multi-time Daytona 200 winner and former Superbike champion confirmed that he will race a GSX-R600 in the Daytona 200 next month.
The former AMA Superbike Champion will ride for the Blackfoot Suzuki team, based out of Canada and run by former factory Suzuki, Harley-Davidson and Ducati rider Pascal Picotte.
"It's all good," DuHamel said this morning from Los Angeles. "Pascal was keen to do this as was Alan and I thought, 'Hey, it's Daytona'. The team is a solid one and Pascal is a great team manager. I'm looking forward to doing them proud.
Miguel said the off-season passed with few job offers. "I'm serious, I look at some of the guys who now have rides in the US and I think, 'Who the hell are some of these guys? What have they done?' I don't even recognize their names."
Unfortunately the reality,which Miguel isn't grasping, is that roadracing in America is now at a club level and paid factory rides are few, and are only going to riders capable of winning races today, not ten years ago.
It's better to go out on the top, and use than well earned celebrity status to secure a new motorcycle industry career, then throw it away while trying to continue on as a non paid privateer in a club livel series.
Talking with the
Valentino Rossi Interview
Troy Bayliss Interview
10 Questions for the 3-Time World Supebike Champion
The story of now 3-Time World Superbike Champion Troy Bayliss narrated by Ewan McGreggor
Alstare BRUX Suzuki Team Takes Podium at Phillip Island
March 1.st -Team Suzuki Alstare Brux riders Max Neukirchner and Yukio Kagayama raced their GSX-R1000s to second and third places in the opening race at today's World Superbike Championship opener at Phillip Island in Australia.
And, although both riders experienced grip problems in race two - with Neukirchner sixth and Kagayama eighth - Neukirchner left the circuit holding second place in the Championship.
Max Neukirchner - Race 1: 2nd, Race 2: 6th: "I was very happy with the first race and thought I could win it after a big fight with Nori. But I made a little mistake on the last lap and that was enough for Nori to take the chequered flag and push me to second. But for me, second is a great start to the season and it is a good way to say thank you to my team for all the hard work over the winter. I had some problems with chatter in race two and also got caught up in a lot of traffic and found it not easy to get through it. I lost three seconds on the front group and that was too much to make up. The grip level seemed quite a bit down in race two and it was not possible to go any faster. If I had gone any quicker, I may have crashed and I didn't want that as Yukio and I have not had a single crash all weekend!"
Yukio Kagayama - Race 1: 3rd, Race 2: 8th: "I am so happy to be on the podium again because the last time was a very long time ago - Brno in 2007. I am a racer and I like to win, so the first race was a good feeling for me. The bike was almost the same in race two, but the grip level was much different and I had some chattering and many slides. Also, I had a problem with my left boot and it was not so easy to use the shifter. If I didn't have that problem, I'm sure I could've caught and passed at least two riders in front of me. But it's a good feeling to be on the podium again and also good because I didn't crash this weekend."
Brux Is New Team Title Sponsor for Alstare
Team Alstare Suzuki has announced that dental company Brux will be its title sponsor in this year's World Superbike Championship.
From now on, the team will be known as Team Suzuki Alstare Brux.
Brux is a product of QuattroTi Dentech - an Italian company which is a leader in the dentistry industry. Brux is a sports mouthguard developed to improve the quality of the riding in relation to comfort and safety. For this reason, Team Alstare racers choose Brux in order to maximise their performance and level of endurance.
Team Suzuki Alstare Brux's 2009 bikes are all new - in looks and design. The riders are racing the new Suzuki GSX-R 1000 K9s with livery designed with the company's brand and colours.
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High Speed - the Movie
The best motorcyce racing movie ever made! Filmed on location at World Superbike, this an exciting romantic drama staring beautiful actress Sienna Miller.
New Kawasaki Europe Racing Team Website Online!
The new 2009 Kawasaki Racing Team Website produced by Kawasaki Europe is now on line and will cover the factory team's performances in the upcoing World Superbike Chapionship which kicks off March 1st at Phillip Island.
Kawasaki will be competing in this championship with the recently formed Kawasaki Superbike Racing Team (riders: Broc Parkes and Makoto Tamada). During recent tests in a.o. Portimao and several Spanish tracks, the riders are coming to grips with the Ninja ZX-10R and the team is making serious steps forward. Today starts another important test for the WSBK team, in Phillip Island. For sure, they'll be ready for the first race!
Kawasaki Motors Europe is also a major contributor to the newly formed Kawasaki Provec Motocard.com team, which will defend our green colour in the World Supersport Championship this year. Results so far have been very promising! Our newly signed rider Joan Lascorz has already smashed lap records during tests on several tracks on the 2009 Ninja ZX-6R and also his team-mate Katsuaki Fujiwara is getting the pace.
The Kawasaki Europe Webiste will also cover the World Motocross Championshp. Check it out at:
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Haslam Scores his First World Superbike Podium with Ten Kate Honda
March 1st - Leon Haslam (Stiggy Racing Honda CBR1000RR) first took a sixth, and then a third place finish, in the 22-lap World Superbike Races at Phillip Island to leave the opening round third in the overall championship standings. Haslam had qualified sixth on the grid and rode with patience until the last laps of race two to secure his podium, the best single performance by a Honda Superbike rider today.
Jonathan Rea (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda CBR1000RR) finished race one as top Honda rider, taking fifth place after a strong early performance from his front row grid slot of third. He led for three laps, from the first to the third. In race two he could not get away with the leading group and finished ninth.
Carlos Checa (Hannspree Ten Kate Honda CBR1000RR), Roby Rolfo (Stiggy Racing Honda CBR1000RR) and Tommy Hill (Hannspree Honda Althea Honda CBR1000RR) finished their opening race of the year in 12th, 13th and 14th places respectively, with Checa doing well to overcome the shoulder injury he suffered last week in testing. He had qualified impressively, in seventh place. In race two Checa was 13th, experiencing serious traction issues from the start. Hill was 14th again and Rolfo finished just out of the points,16th.
Ryuichi Kiyonari (Ten Kate Honda CBR1000RR) was taken out of the first race at Honda corner, on lap one, and was unable to restart, His luck got little better in race two, as he could only finish in 23rd place after losing rear grip early on.
Race one was taken by Ducati rider Noriyuki Haga, with race two won by WSB rookie Ben Spies on his Yamaha, some 4.213 seconds up on Haslam.
Rea had been fastest of all in regulation qualifying, before Superpole started. The new Superpole contest had been a highlight of the weekend before the races started, with Rea, Haslam and Checa playing a strong hand to make it through the final three stages of qualifying. Kiyonari secured 10th place in Superpole,
In the championship standings, Haslam is a strong third, with Haga on 45 points, Max Neukirchner second on 30, Haslam on 26 and Spies on 25. Rea is eighth, on 18 points, and Checa 12th. Hill and Rolfo have four and three points respectively.
Larry H. Miller, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist, Owner of Miller Motorosports Park Dies at 64
Feb 20th - Miller's career legacy includes more than 80 companies — the Utah Jazz, Salt Lake Bees, Miller Motorsports Park, EnergySolutions Arena, and 39 automobile dealerships; he is survived by wife Gail, five children, 21 grandchildren and one great grandchild. An incredible motorsports enthusiast,
Larry built his Miller Motorsports Park some 25 miles outside Salt Lake City, to be one of the premier race track facilities in America. It was originally produced as a passion, if not a financially viable race track, to give Larry and his friends a place to drive and race their cars. Larry has one of the nicest, most expensive collections of Ford racing cars in the world which are housed in a museum at the track.
In an effort to add stature and prominence to Miller Motorsports raceway, the track has been regularly hosting racing schools and national; racing events for both sports car and motorcycles, and most notably for motorcycle roadracing enthusiasts the AMA Superbike National Championship and then, beginning last year in 2008, the SBK World World Superbike Championship.
Because of the race track's location in the middle of the Utah desert, far away from any major metropolitan or population areas, Miller Motorsports has never been able to pull over 5,000 spectators for a major National or International event like last year's World Superbike round. With the track's huge operational expense including many full and part time employees, the track facility has been run more for Larry's personal motorsports passion than a profit making enterprise. With Larry's death it will need to seen if his family will wish to carry on his passion for motorsports and the hugh operational expense of Miller Motorsports Park, particularly in in the present economy when his auto dealerships are probably no longer profitable and capable of supporting the race track. - Editor