The two rivals traded one-two finishes while their teammate Tommy Hayden finished third in both races to complete a Rockstar Makita Suzuki podium sweep for the weekend.
With one final race remaining, Sept. 28 at Laguna Seca in Monterrey, Calif., Spies holds an insurmountable 620-519 edge over Mladin for the 2008 championship. The only thing standing in the way of Spiesí coronation is Mladinís appeal over his disqualification from the two races at Virginia International Raceway Aug. 15-17. Should Mladin win his appeal and get his two VIR wins reinstated, Spiesí lead will be cut to 610-593, setting up a dramatic finale at Laguna Seca.
In other action at Road Atlanta, Erion Hondaís Josh Hayes recorded his second consecutive Supersport win, beating out teammate Jake Zemke and Graves Yamahaís Ben Bostrom. The race had to be restarted and ran for 13 laps instead of the planned 15 after a first-lap crash involving four riders. Safety First Suzukiís Bobby Fong, Graves Yamahaís Tommy Aquino and the Attack Kawasaki duo of Steve Rapp and Chaz Davies were all involved in a chain-reaction. Davies and Aquino were able to restart but Fong was transported to hospital for suspected broken ribs while Rapp was treated and released from the infield medical center, but did not race.
Earlier in the weekend, Hayes and Zemke recorded another one-two finish in the Formula Xtreme race, with Hayes narrowly winning by 0.043 seconds. M4 EMGO Suzuki racer Martin Cardenas completed the podium by finishing 0.360 seconds ahead of Rapp.
The closest finish on the weekend came in the Superstock race with the top three racers separated by 0.169 seconds. Jordan Suzukiís Geoff May finished 0.044 seconds ahead of teammate Aaron Yates while M4 EMGO Suzukiís Blake Young completed the podium.
Motocross racer Jacob Gagne recorded his first win in the Red Bull AMA U.S. Rookies Cup, beating out Hayden Gillim and Benny Solis, Jr. Gagne was presented with the winning trophy by Dennis Wilson, the father of the late Toriano Wilson who succumbed to injuries Aug. 18 following the Rookies race at VIR.
|AMA Superbike top five standings|
|1st||Ben Spies||Suzuki GSX-R1000||620|
|2nd||Mat Mladin||Suzuki GSX-R1000||519|
|3rd||Jason DiSalvo||Yamaha YZF-R1||440|
|4th||Jamie Hacking||Kawasaki ZX-10R||421|
|5th||Eric Bostrom||Yamaha YZF-R1||420|