Josh Herrin Takes Over The SuperBike Championship Lead From His Monster Energy/Graves/Yamaha Teammate Josh Hayes In A Tumultuous SuperBike Race 2 At Miller Motorsports Park
NEWS August 4, 2013
Photo by Brian J Nelson
Courtesy of Yamaha-Motor USA:
Tooele, UT - August 4, 2013 – Fortunes can change quickly in motorcycle road racing, and with the consistency that three-time defending AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike Champion Josh Hayes is known for, sometimes that fact gets forgotten. But today, in AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike Race 2 at Miller Motorsports Park, fortunes changed for the worse for both Hayes and his Monster Energy/Graves/Yamaha teammate Josh Herrin. Ironically, though, Herrin’s situation actually improved as a result.
Herrin fought through a less-than-ideal setup throughout the race, but he toughed it out and finished an admirable third, for his second podium finish of the weekend, and his 9th podium out of 11 races so far this season. And, based on his consistent results, the rider of the #2 Monster Energy/Graves/Yamaha YZF-R1 is now leading the 2013 SuperBike Championship for the second time this season.
Hayes, meanwhile, suffered a worse fate. Things began well for the Mississippi Madman, as he got one of his best starts of the season, and it was obvious that his strategy was to quickly get out front and go to work stretching out his lead.
The plan was working perfectly until lap three when Hayes suffered an ultra-rare lowside in Tooele Turn on the 3.05-mile, 15-turn road course. After he and his #1 R1 slid into the gravel, Hayes quickly got to his feet and worked on getting his SuperBike re-fired and back into the action where he could salvage as many points as possible. He raced back up to 18th place, and he was able to collect three valuable points in the Championship.
Based on his uncharacteristic result, Hayes lost the points lead, and is now third in the Championship with two rounds and three SuperBike races left to decide this year’s title winner. But, the Champ is not out of contention yet. In fact, he still very much controls his own fate if he can extract maximum points out of the remaining three races this season.
In the post-race podium press conference, Herrin said, “I was struggling all race long to keep the bike off the ground. I don’t know what it was, but it seemed like it was something with the front tire. Around the middle of the race, it seemed to start feeling better, but by then, both tires were pretty worn. Yesterday was, by far, the best it could have possibly gone for us, which made today so tough to take. It wasn’t our day, but we came out of here with the points lead, so that’s a big plus.”
Hayes said, “I was trying hard, and I fell down. I wanted to put in fast laps right from the start, and try to pull a gap. I made a mistake and unfortunately had a lowside. It was a difficult weekend for us, but we’ll move on to the next round.”
The Monster Energy/Graves/Yamaha team will be back in action on the weekend of September 13 through 18 for Round 8 of the AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike Championship, which is the New Jersey Lottery Devil’s Showdown at New Jersey Motorsports Park in Millville, NJ.
For more news, results, and other team info, be sure to check out Yamaha’s Facebook page and follow us on Twitter @YamahaMotorUSA.
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