AMA explains Mladin ruling

AMA's VP of competition responds to Suzuki’s comments

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, Sep. 10, 2008
AMA Pro Racing has released a statement commenting on its decision to deny Mat Mladin’s appeal.

The statement, issued by Roy Janson, AMA Pro Racing’s vice president of competition, provides details that were not released in the official announcement of the decision to deny the Rockstar Makita Suzuki rider’s appeal of his disqualification from a pair of AMA Superbike races Aug. 16-17 at Virginia International Raceway.

Mladin was stripped of two race wins at VIR and the championship points he would have earned. The denial of Mladin’s appeal, combined with the results of the Aug. 30-31 Road Atlanta races, ended Mladin’s hopes for the 2008 Championship which was awarded to his teammate and rival Ben Spies.

Janson says that a visual inspection of Mladin’s #6 GSX-R1000 following the VIR races detected significant differences from the control sample provided by Suzuki. Mladin’s crankshaft and the control model were then shipped to AMA Pro Racing headquarters for further examination along with two additional models from Suzuki’s distribution system. Janson says that crankshaft from Mladin’s race machine differed from the three comparison models which were identical.

The crankshaft from Mladin's GSX-R1000 did not match any of the three models provided by Suzuki.The precise difference between the crankshafts was not specified, but Janson did say that independent tests determined that there were inconsistencies in their material content.

Janson also says that the crankshaft in question differed from those found in inspections of other 2008 Suzuki GSX-R1000 bikes ridden by other teams and riders since the VIR races.

Rockstar Makita Suzuki was asked to provide proof that the crankshaft of Mladin’s machine was a stock/production part readily available at normal retail outlets, but Janson says “nothing was provided by this company to support the position that the #6 crankshaft was a stock/production part, nor was any information provided that demonstrated that this part was available to any other teams.”

Janson also addresses comments made in a statement released by American Suzuki Motor Corporation and Yoshimura Racing which said they were “shocked and dismayed” by the dismissal of Mladin’s appeal.

“While both the U.S. distributor of the Suzuki GSX-R1000 and the team owners of the machine have publicly criticized and questioned the action to penalize the rider of the #6 Suzuki for using an illegal crankshaft at the VIR AMA Superbike National, AMA Pro Racing is fully satisfied that the examination of this part and the subsequent disciplinary action to disqualify the rider of this machine was done in a fair, thorough manner and in accordance with the AMA Superbike rulebook,” says Janson.

Related Reading
AMA Pro Racing denies Mladin appeal
Mladin disqualified from VIR results