Gobert on Top at Fontana

Brent Avis
by Brent Avis
It was a rain-delayed day at Fontana, with the skies periodically opening up, keeping the racing action mute until after 4:00 PM. Only then did the AMA decide to run a race, even though the weather's future was unknown as sprinkles started to fall as jet-dryers kept circulating the track.

Mid-race surprises were the crash of Honda's Miguel Duhamel and Suzuki's Jamie Hacking (both of which walked away unhurt) and the "blown clutch" (as Kawasaki's PR put it) that saw Eric Bostrom sidelined...

Other interesting developments were HMC Ducati's new recruit, Doug Chandler, running in fourth place and, for a time, looking like he might be in contention for more than just a podium finish (though that in itself would be quite an accomplishment given Doug's lack of track time here as well as on the new Ducati).

At the end of it all, however, Yamaha's Anthony Gobert and Suzuki's Aaron Yates battled it out, hard, crossing the finish line just .014 second apart. The finish was so close, in fact, that neither racer knew for sure who the victor was until the winner was declared after the cool-off lap.

Team Honda's Nicky Hayden came across the line third after he seemed to get balked by the many lappers the two front-runners sliced, diced and frappe'd their way through.

Also, kudos to Anthony for waving so much and pulling the horn monos, persuading the "judges" before we all knew who won for sure. Tee, hee.

1. Anthony Gobert (Yamaha)2. Aaron Yates (Suzuki)3. Nicky Hayden (Honda)4. Doug Chandler (Ducati)5. Pascal Picotte (Ducati)6. Mat Mladin (Suzuki)7. Lee Acree (Suzuki)8. Brian Parriott (Suzuki)9. Brian Livengood (Suzuki)10. Andy Deatherage (Suzuki)
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