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FastDates.com July 2004
Page 1 • Superbike, MotoGP Racing & Calendar Girl News
Official Calendar of the SBK World Superbike Championship
Home of the official SBK Fast Dates & Team Ducati Corse Umbrella Girls

Page 4 - Laguna Seca SBK World & AMA National Superbike

Ducati DRE Race School with World Champ Marco Luchinell
Brazilian Moto GP Tamada wins, Championship leaders fall.

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Vermeulen on his privateer team Ten Kate Honda CBR1000RR holds off the Ducati factory duo of Toseland and Laconi in Race 2.

SBK World Superbike Championship 2004 - Laguna Seca Round 7

Chris Vermeulen Takes Double World Superbike Wins at Laguna
Laguna Seca, CA, USA, July 9-11th - sweltering Laguna Seca circuit, with track temperatures peaking at 51'C, provided the perfect backdrop for the latest round of the World Superbike series, with one clear double race winner coming to the fore. Chris Vermeulen used the speed and sweet handling package of his Ten Kate prepared Honda CBR1000RR to take a well-deserved race one win at Laguna, leading for the last 21 laps of the 28. Pierfrancesco Chili (Ducati) went second, four seconds down on Vermeulen, and Ducati privateer Steve Martin took the final podium place in third, to add to his second Superpole win of the year in qualifying.

FastDates.com Calendar Angel Andra Cobb keeps Frankie cool on the grid before his 2nd place in Race1.

In the second 28-lap race third fastest qualifier Vermeulen had to work hard to hold off the attentions of factory Ducati rider and new championship leader James Toseland. Third, himself embroiled in a holding action against Noriyuki Haga, was Regis Laconi, who now trails Toseland by three points.

Said 22-year-old Vermeulen, winner of the last three SBK races in succession, "This is the first time at Laguna for me the bike and team and we won the race. I think there is still a lot more to come as well so hopefully we can win a lot more. Coming here for the first time I would have been happy with top five or six, to be honest. The team worked hard and we have made a lot of progress with the bike recently. Everyone told me this track would be difficult to learn, and it has proved to be that way, but I really liked it and the team did a great job with the bike. I like the elevation changes here but Turn One was a bit scary at first. I got over it because I passed James Toseland a couple of times there!"

Chris Vermeulen is the hottest new rider in World Superbike, clinching his 2nd and 3rd race wins at Laguna.

Toseland is the first rider to break through the 200 point barrier, with his new total of 201 comparing to Laconi's 198. Vermeulen sits only 14 points from the lead, on 187. Haga and Chili are separated by only two points; 162 to 160. Round eight of World Superbike and round seven of the World Supersport championships take place in the UK, at Brands Hatch on August 1.

Race One:
1 Vermeulen;
2 Chili +4.127;
3 Martin +5.707;
4 Toseland +8.347;
5 Laconi +8.390;
6 Haga +18.560;
7 McCoy +21.290;
8 Sanchini +31.795;
9 Haslam +34.166;
10 Corser +38.175;
11 Borciani +43.554;
12 Pedercini +57.948;
13 Bontempi +1.18.252;
14 Saiger +1:22.532

Race Two:
1 Vermeulen;
2 Toseland +0.465;
3 Laconi +13.520;
4 Haga +13.742;
5 Chili +21.770;
6 Martin +27.964;
7 McCoy +43.631;
8 Borciani +48.268;
9 Sanchini +49.327;
10 Clementi +54.021;
11 Pedercini +1:09.618;
12 Bontempi +1:24.444;
13 Nowland 1 lap;
14 Saiger 1 lap.

Championship Standings: 1. Toseland 201; 2. Laconi 198; 3. Vermeulen 187; 4. Haga 162 ; 5. Chili 160 ; 6. McCoy 146

Ben leads Yates, brother Eric and Yates through the Corkscrew to garder his fist Superbike race win this season for Honda.

AMA National Superbike Championships, Laguna Seca Round 8

AMA Chevrolet Superbike Championship Preview Laguna Seca
Top three riders virtually even as the series moves to Monterey, California

Laguna Seca, CA, July 9-11th - After the upcoming Honda Superbike Classic, July 9-11 at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, the 2004 AMA Chevrolet Superbike Championship will be two-thirds complete. As the championship makes the turn for the homestretch the battle for the number one spot is heating up. Defending champ Mat Mladin is in the familiar spot of leading the championship, but the Suzuki ace is being hotly pursued by 1995 AMA Superbike champ Miguel Duhamel and first year factory Superbike sensation Jake Zemke, both on Hondas. The top three riders are covered by just 10 points with seven rounds remaining. The Honda Superbike Classic is part of the annual combined AMA and World Superbike weekend bringing together the top superbike riders from around the world.

An exciting subtext to Sunday’s race is Eric Bostrom’s opportunity to tie Freddie Spencer for the most AMA Superbike wins at Laguna Seca. Bostrom won the race in 2001 and 2002 aboard Kawasaki and this year he’s looking to put his Ducati Austin bike on top. The legendary former world champion Spencer won his last race at Laguna Seca in 1995. It was his third AMA Superbike win on the famous Monterey circuit.
The top three AMA Superbike riders have all tasted victory at Laguna Seca. Mladin and Duhamel in Superbike and Zemke on a Formula Xtreme bike in 2002. Zemke is coming off his very first AMA Superbike win last week in Brainerd, Minn. Duhamel had won three of the previous four rounds before that, but Mladin hasn’t had a win since mid-May in Birmingham, Ala. It’s the longest stretch Mladin has gone without winning since his unmemorable 2002 campaign when the Yoshimura Suzuki rider went winless the entire season.
"I've still got the points lead as we head off to Laguna Seca for the next round and see what we can do,” said Mladin, the only rider to have won four AMA Superbike Championships. “You're powering up hills out of tight turns there. So it won't be easy again, but we'll be trying our best as we always do and will be chasing the win there for sure."

Eric Bostrom is a distant fourth in the series standings and is now concentrating on getting race wins. If he manages to be victorious at Laguna Seca it would mark Ducati’s first AMA Superbike win at the track in five years.

Privateer Geoff May is ranked fifth coming into this weekend. May is hoping to become the first since Dale Quartereley in 1995 to be a non-factory rider finishing the season ranked in the top five. May has shown amazing consistency on his Team Prieto Racing Suzuki this year scoring top-10 finishes in all but one round this year. His best result was a fifth at California Speedway in early April. May, last year’s AMA Superbike Rookie of the Year, proved to be a quick learner on the challenging Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca road course last year. He qualified 39th, then charged all the way to 15th in the race.

Two established AMA Superbike stars are still trying to find their way this year. Both Ben Bostrom and Aaron Yates are experiencing seasons they’d just as soon forget. That all could change with a win at Laguna Seca. Bostrom burst onto the world radar by unexpectedly winning a round of the World Superbike Series at Laguna in 1999. Bostrom, who is ranked sixth in the current AMA standings, would love to get his season turned around with a win at one of his favorite tracks. Ben and his brother Eric grew up in the nearby San Francisco Bay area.

Yates is another rider hoping for good things at Laguna. His past results at the twisty circuit have been mixed and unfortunately he is best remembered at Laguna Seca for the unbelievable triple-digit speed high-side crash he had coming out of turn 10 a few seasons ago that made the highlight shows. He’s also infamous for crashing in the first turn of one of the World Superbike races last year at Laguna causing a chain reaction that left several riders on the ground. A win for Yates would be more than just a simple victory; it would mark redemption of sorts for the Georgian.

The race will be broadcast live nationally on July 11, at 5 p.m. Eastern on SPEED Channel.
For ticket info contact Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca at (800) 327-SECA or visit the website www.laguna-seca.com.

Thursday, July 8
7:00 - 5:00 - Registration: Crew, Sponsors & Guests (Embassy Suites, Seaside)
8:00 - 5:00 - Tech Inspection
11:50 - 12:50 - FIM Track/Medical Inspection
Friday, July 9
7:30 - 4:00 - Registration: Crew, Sponsors & Guests (Embassy Suites, Seaside)
8:00 - 5:00 - Tech Inspection
8:30 - 9:10 - AMA Repsol Superstock Practice
9:20 - 10:00 - Lockhart Phillips USA Formula Xtreme Practice
10:00 - FIM Track/Medical Inspection
10:30 - 11:30 - WSBK Practice
11:30 - 12:20 - Lunch
11:40 - Mandatory Rider Briefing All Classes
12:20 - 1:05 - Chevrolet Superbike Practice
1:15 - 2:00 - Pro Honda Oils Supersport Practice
2:15 - 3:15 - WSBK Qualifying
3:25 - 3:55 - AMA Repsol Superstock Qualifying, Group 1
4:05 - 4:35 - AMA Repsol Superstock Qualifying, Group 2
4:45 - 5:15 - Lockhart Phillips USA Formula Xtreme Qualifying, Group 1
5:25 - 5:55 - Lockhart Phillips USA Formula Xtreme Qualifying, Group 2
Saturday, July 10
7:30 - 4:00 - Registration: Crew, Sponsors & Guests (Embassy Suites, Seaside)
8:30 - 5:00 - Tech Inspection
8:30 - 9:30 - Practice: 1. Pro Honda Oils Supersport; 2. AMA Repsol Superstock Practice
9:30 - FIM Track/Medical Inspection
10:00 - 11:00 - WSBK Qualifying
11:10 - 12:00 - Practice: 3. Lockhart Phillips USA Formula Xtreme; 4. Chevrolet Superbike Practice
12:00 - 12:50 - Lunch Break
12:00 - 12:15 - Stunt Show (Front Straight)
12:50 - AMA Repsol Superstock Race (60k – 17 laps)
2:00 - 3:00 - WSBK Practice
3:15 - WSBK Superpole
4:10 - Lockhart Phillips USA Formula Xtreme Race (60k - 17 laps)
5:00 - 5:30 - Chevrolet Superbike Qualifying, Group 1
5:40 - 6:10 - Chevrolet Superbike Qualifying, Group 2
6:15 - Stunt Show (Turns 4 & 5)
Sunday, July 11
7:30 - 12:00 - Registration: Crew, Sponsors & Guests (Embassy Suites, Seaside)
8:30 - Tech Inspection Opens
8:10 - FIM Track/Medical Inspection
8:40 - 9:10 - Chevrolet Superbike Practice
9:20 - 9:40 - WSBK Warm-up
9:50 - 10:20 - Pro Honda Oils Supersport Qualifying, Group 1
10:30 - 11:00 - Pro Honda Oils Supersport Qualifying, Group 2
11:10 - 11:40 - Fan Ride/Keith Code Lap
12:00 - WSBK Race #1 (100.856k - 28 laps)
1:00 - 2:00 - Lunch Break/Stunt Show (Turns 4 & 5)
2:00 - Chevrolet Superbike Race (100k - 28 laps)
3:30 - WSBK Race #2 (100.856k - 28 laps)
4:30 - Pro Honda Oils Supersport Race (60k – 17 laps)
5:15 - Stunt Show (Front Straight)

Ben twists the Corkscrew on the Formula Xtreme CBR600RR

Ben Bostom Wins Laguna Honda Superbike Classic
Doubles in Formula Xtreme
Laguna Seca Raceway, CA, July 11th - American Honda’s Ben Bostrom returned to form at the scene of one his greatest triumphs, winning both the Superbike and Formula Xtreme races on a bright and sunny weekend in the Honda Superbike Classic at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. Bostrom’s wins came on the same weekend that Chris Vermeulen won both World Superbike races on his Honda Fireblade, the first double of the young Australian’s career.

Joining Bostrom on the red-flag interrupted Superbike podium was American Honda’s Miguel Duhamel, who came third. Erion Honda’s Jake Zemke led the opening lap and was second for much of the race, but suffered electrical gremlins that dropped him to seventh. Hondas also swept the top four spots in Formula Xtreme, Bostrom leading Duhamel, Zemke, and Alex Gobert in another race that was red-flag interrupted.

Bostrom’s win was his first in America in nearly five years, though he had a string of five World Superbike wins that began here at Laguna Seca in 2001. In a season that’s been hampered by various physical problems, a healthy and focused Bostrom began his return to form in the previous race at Brainerd International Raceway. It continued here on the Monterey Peninsula when he took the pole position with a new AMA lap record.

When the race was red-flagged on the 17th of 28 laps, Hondas were a charging two-three-four. The race would be a 13 lap sprint and Bostrom led every one of them, never seriously challenged for the win, Honda’s sixth of the year. Duhamel took third from Aaron Yates with two laps to go after a racelong battle. Zemke came seventh. The electrical problems that cropped up in the first segment of the race never abated, despite the best efforts of the team during the red flag break. It was only the second time this season that Zemke’s been off the podium and it was his first mechanical problem.

By taking the point for pole position and finishing in front of championship leader Mat Mladin, third today, Bostrom denied the Suzuki rider maximum points. The series heads to the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in two weeks with Mladin holding a 10-point lead, 391 to 381, over Duhamel, with Zemke at 372. There are three double-header rounds, six races remaining. Hondas also stand first through third in Formula Xtreme, Duhamel with a 17 point cushion on Zemke with Alex Gobert third at 220.

Ben Bostrom, First Place
This place has been pretty good to me. Today was one of the funner days I’ve had. We got a great start and jumped out there. I tried to put as much time on them as I could and I had short gap and I knew they’d be coming after me. He [Mladin] kept me real honest. It’s really fun when you’re out there racing and you have to push hard every lap and you’re nervous. I was so tense the last few laps, I couldn’t remember what it was like to win a Superbike race. I saw everybody leaning over the wall and cheering me on and I said, ‘We can actually do this.’ And here we are.

Miguel Duhamel, Third Place
It was just a good battle, but I looked at the board and saw that the race was pretty short. I said, ‘I gotta get by (Yates).’ I got by him, he got back by me and I got back by him. We were swapping back and forth, nice and clean, and it was just hard racing. He was going everything he could to put it on the podium and hat’s off to him for putting it together there at the end. I was hoping to get in front of him earlier to make a run at Mat [Mladin] and Ben [Bostrom]. My bike was working pretty good, but I ran out of time. I’m very happy. Laguna has always been tough on me and I always do decent here. Third is very decent again.

Jake Zemke, Seventh Place
It was good for a little while until the problem arose. It was either electrical or fuel. The bike was cutting out pretty badly. They changed a bunch of stuff when we came in for the red flag and I was hoping we would have something, but on the warm-up lap it was still doing it. We just limped home and that’s all she wrote. It began right after I passed Mat (Mladin). The next lap it started. I passed him and he passed me back. I instantly lost touch. It did it once and I thought maybe it was just something weird. But it kept getting worse and worse. I just waved Ben (Bostrom) by in case he had a shot at Mat. I didn’t want to hold him up.

1. Ben Bostrom (Honda)
2. Mat Mladin (Suzuki)
3. Miguel Duhamel (Honda)
4. Aaron Yates (Suzuki)
5. Eric Bostrom (Ducati)
6. Josh Hayes (Kawasaki)
7. Jake Zemke (Honda)
8. Jacob Holden (Suzuki)
9. Larry Pegram (Yamaha)
10. Geoff May (Suzuki)
Superbike Points:
1. Mat Mladin (Suzuki) 391
2. Miguel Duhamel (Honda) 381
3. Jake Zemke (Honda) 372
4. Eric Bostrom (Ducati) 288
5. Geoff May (Suzuki) 262
6. Ben Bostrom (Honda) 247
7. John Haner (Suzuki) 219
8. Aaron Yates (Suzuki) 216
9. Eric Wood (Suzuki) 199
10. Josh Hayes (Kawasaki) 186
Formula Xtreme:
1. Ben Bostrom (Honda)
2. Miguel Duhamel (Honda)
3. Jake Zemke (Honda)
4. Alex Gobert (Honda)
5. Vincent Haskovec (Suzuki)
6. Doug Chandler (Ducati)
7. Jason Pridmore (Suzuki)
8. Larry Pegram (Yamaha)
9. Nicky Moore (Suzuki)
10. Mike Ciccotto (Buell)

Our official SBK World Superbike Ducati Corse umbrella girls at Laguna Seca, from left to right: Miss Great Britain Nicki Lane, Andra Cobb, and Miss Texas "Rockin' Robin" Cunningham. Andra also served as umbrela girl for Attack Kawasaki's Josh Hayes in AMA Superbike where Josh asked Andra for a date on the starting line, and was so distracted he actually blew the start.

There's more!   Go to Pit Lane News Next Page

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Meet Mikuni's "Explict Performance" girl Andra Cobb for a Free Autographed Poster and our other SBK World Superbike FastDates.com Calendar Angels including Miss Great Britain Nicki Lane & Robin Cunningham to pick up your autographed copy our new 2005 Calendars!

LA Calendar Bike Show
Master of Cermonies!

Robin Cunningham

our SBK Fast Dates
Superbike Calendar Angel and Ducati Corse Umbrella Girl at 2004 Laguna Seca,
Miss Harley-Davidson,
Miss Texas, Miss Hawaiian Tropic International winner,
and hostess of an upcoming new Rock Band Interview series on Fuse music TV!

Rockin' Robin will blow your socks and shorts off all weekend long as our Hostess and Master of Ceremonies on stage for the Bike Show, and as we party into the wee hours of the night at the Iron & Lace Calendar Saturday Night Builders Party on board the Queen Mary!
- Click for more -


Rossi & Gibernau
bite the pavement in
Brazil this month as Tomada wins his first ever MotoGP!

Haydon claims first
British R1 victory

Haydon and McElnea celebrate in Scotland

4/7/2004- James Haydon claimed the first win of the season for the Virgin Mobile Samsung Yamaha British Superbike team during round eight of the highly competitive series at the Knockhill circuit in Scotland today.

After taking second-place despite a less than perfect tyre selection in the wet-but-drying first race, the Andorra-based Englishman led the wet second race for almost the entire 25 laps to give the team its first victory with the latest-generation YZF-R1 superbike.
Despite constant pressure from John Reynolds (Suzuki) and Sean Emmett (Ducati), Haydon rode smoothly to take what is arguably the highest profile victory for the R1 to date – the British championship series features full-factory or manufacturer-backed entries from all the Japanese manufacturers plus Ducati.

“Boy that was a hard race,” exclaimed Haydon. “Every lap there was plus naught on my board and Reynolds’ pressure was unrelenting, I knew he was there all the time and kept seeing him looking down the outside. I wanted to keep consistent and smooth. The weather here has been atrocious but I have made sure that I went out in every session so I had good set-up in the dry and wet. We have proven today that we have a race-winning bike and I’m really delighted that I could win for the team.”

Team-boss Rob McElnea was equally thrilled with the result and praised Haydon and his team: “We are going to enjoy this. To go out in this weather and be used as a marker for the rest of the field is testament to James. He knows what this meant for the team. While we know we still have work to do on the bike our feet are firmly on the ground his result today has really lifted everyone in the team.”

Naked Desmosedici! FastDates.com takes an exclusive visit inside the
Ducati Corse MotoGP Race Shop!
Plus - See our visit to
Ducati Racing School
At Misani Italy!

Tyre industry evolving
as globalisation
forces change

OVER past decades, the tyre industry has been a relatively stable market, dominated by only a handful of major names.
Historically, domestic tyre markets prospered and the main players were able to thrive as sales in motor vehicles boomed. This was particularly true in America, whose production of tyres overshadowed that of the rest of the world.

Today, the situation is very different, with fierce competition from Europe and, more importantly, from developing industries in the Far East.
In the USA, only Cooper and Goodyear-Dunlop remain. The main competitors are: in Japan, Bridgestone-Firestone; in France, Michelin; in Germany, Continental, Metzeler and the Italian Pirelli brand; in the UK, the Cooper subsidiary Avon. Of course, many of these firms exist now in a very different corporate format to that in which they started out, with numerous brand purchases and mergers.
The growing Asian tyre market comprises Japanese companies such as Toyo and Yokohama, Hankook and Kumho in Korea, and Vee Rubber in Thailand. The latter firms are forcing down prices and increasing pressure on the industry by profiting from low labour costs.

Goodyear is still the world's largest tyre company, and its plant in Tonawanda, New York, has recent and continuing capital investments in excess of $6.8 million (€5.61 million), which include a development programme for motorcycle tyres. That said, the company is facing significant financial problems and has incurred a high amount of debt. Over the past three years, the manufacturer has lost more than $2 billion (€1.7 billion). This has led to job cuts, the closure of plants and the refinancing of loans. The outcome of this dynamic phase in the history of tyre manufacturing is difficult to predict, but the battle for domination of global trade continues to intensify.