The series’ inaugural night race began without problems but then tripped up when lighting equipment in Daytona’s chicane failed and caused the pace car to come out. Then while riders were sorting themselves out after pit stops, new Yamaha recruit Tommy Aquino was hit from the rear while slowing behind the safety car, causing a significant crash. A concerned corner worker threw a red flag, which stopped the race, even though race control didn’t call for it.
The race stoppage lasted an incredibly long time before it was restarted. More problems arose when another crash involving Suzuki rider Kris Turner brought out a caution flag, and the pace car was unsure of which rider to pick up as the leader.
When the race finally restarted, it was a sprint race for the remaining laps. A pack of four riders diced for the lead of the famous race: three Yamaha R6 riders (Josh Hayes, Ben Bostrom and Josh Herrin), plus Kawasaki’s Jamie Hacking and former Yamaha rider Jason DiSalvo on his Suzuki GSX-R600. Hayes took himself out of the race when he highsided exiting the International Horseshoe.
It was former Superbike champion Bostrom who was first to arrive at the checkered flag, just ahead of a close a battle between and Bostrom’s teammate Herrin and DiSalvo, with the less experienced Herrin just edging out the Suzuki rider for the runner-up spot.
“I’ve tried to win this thing,” said Bostrom after the race. “We’ve been on pole here. We’ve lost this race by two thousandths. I know what it’s like in the heart when you take second at Daytona. It hurts. Now I know what it’s like to win.”
|2009 Daytona 200 results|
|1st||Ben Bostrom||Yamaha YZF-R6||-|
|2nd||Josh Herrin||Yamaha YZF-R6||+0.551|
|3rd||Jason DiSalvo||Suzuki GSX-R600||+0.624|
|4th||Jamie Hacking||Kawasaki ZX-6R||+4.745|
|5th||Shawn Higbee||Buell 1125R||+12.949|
|6th||Barrett Long||Yamaha YZF-R6||+14.408|
|7th||Chaz Davies||Aprilia RSV1000R||+22.899|
|8th||Dane Westby||Yamaha YZF-R6||+23.022|
|9th||Martin Cardenas||Suzuki GSX-R600||+24.000|
|10th||Leandro Mercado||Kawasaki ZX-6R||+25.642|