AMA Superbike: 2009 Infineon results

Hayes ends Suzuki’s winning streak

By Motorcycle.Com Staff, May. 18, 2009
Factory Yamaha rider Josh Hayes ended Suzuki’s AMA Superbike winning streak with a victory in Race One at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, Calif.

Hayes beat Rockstar Makita Suzuki’s Tommy Hayden by over six seconds to win his first AMA Superbike race. The win also ended Suzuki’s winning streak at 55. The last non-Suzuki rider to win was Honda rider Jake Zemke on June 18, 2006 at Miller Motorsports Park.

Pole-sitter Mat Mladin of Rockstar Makita Suzuki led the first two laps followed by a group including Hayden and Yamaha teammates Hayes and Ben Bostrom. Dramatic passing on the first turn of lap three gave Bostrom the lead with Hayes following soon after

Bostrom’s lead was short-lived however as he low sided later that same lap at turn 11.  He was able to remount and finished ninth but the day belonged to his teammate. Hayes led the rest of the 22-lap race to win by 6.135 seconds.

Hayden held off Foremost Ducati’s Larry Pegram to finish second. The two riders swapped positions on laps 11 and 18 with Hayden finishing ahead by nearly two seconds. Mladin, who had won every AMA Superbike race this season prior to the Infineon round, crossed the line fifth, 24.755 seconds after Hayes.

“It was a pretty good day,” says Hayes. “I think the pace was slower than any of us expected and the heat played a role. I was feeling things out (at first) and I saw Ben (Bostrom) being aggressive and then he had his miscue. Mat had some problems; it was not his race today. We all have bad races and Mat had his. I expect tomorrow that will not be an issue for Mat.”

Hayes’ prediction came true in Sunday’s Race Two.

Suzuki's winning streak ended in Race One at Infineon Raceway, but a new streak may have started in Race Two.

Mladin jumped out to another early lead but this time was able to hold off the competition for his 80th AMA Superbike win. The 37-year-old Australian celebrated the victory by performing pushups before accepting his trophy.

“When I won my first championship over a decade ago I heard that I would only win one and that would be the end of him,” says Mladin. “I’ve heard it all before. I won my first national championship 28 years ago as a kid. I’ve been doing this a while and won’t go away that quick.”

Bostrom rebounded from his first race crash to finish second on his home track.

“It’s a tough track, one of the toughest we go to,” said Bostrom. “I love it so much and I’ve always wanted to win a Superbike race here but I’ve never done it. Congratulations to Mat and Tommy, especially Mat. He rode a perfect race and it was stellar to watch.”

Hayden finished third while Hayes and Pegram completed the top five.

The AMA Superbike Championship continues June 5-7 at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis.

2009 AMA American Superbike top five standings
Pos. Rider Motorcycle Points
1st Mat Mladin Suzuki GSX-R1000 268
2nd Tommy Hayden Suzuki GSX-R1000 189
3rd Josh Hayes Yamaha YZF-R1 160
4th Ben Bostrom Yamaha YZF-R1 150
5th Geoff May Suzuki GSX-R1000 143