Josh Hayes battled with his expected 2012 rivals for the American SuperBike Race 1 victory at Daytona.
Defending American SuperBike champion Josh Hayes took the opening victory of the 2012 ASB season. The Graves Yamaha ace beat his lead 2011 title rival, Yoshimura Suzuki’s Blake Young, for the win. National Guard Jordan Suzuki’s Roger Hayden rounded out the Daytona Race 1 rostrum, as Graves Yamaha rookie Josh Herrin retired from the race with mechanical difficulties after running as high as second.
The pole position winning Hayes was up front early, with the Yamaha pilot working out an early advantage over Young. Hayes was aided by teammate Josh Herrin in the opening laps, who managed to muscle ahead of the Yoshimura ace in a battle for second. Meanwhile Hayden paced away in fourth, with Jordan Suzuki’s second rider, Ben Bostrom, and Motorcycle Superstore.com/LeoVince/Attack Racing’s Steve Rapp fighting over fifth.
Young would dispatch Herrin, with the Graves Yamaha SuperBike eventually running off-track. Herrin rejoined the race, but later parked his bike on the track wall and was forced to make the long walk back to the pits.
Bostrom ran into troubles too, tucking the front end on his GSX-R1000 after passing Rapp. Bostrom managed to rejoin the race as well, though back in 14th. As for Rapp, Kawasaki ZX-10R pilot inherited fourth, but faced a new challenge from Foremost Insurance BMW’s Larry Pegram.
Graves Yamaha American SuperBike rookie Josh Herrin battled for second in the first ASB Daytona race, before retiring with mechanical issues to his R1.
Up front Hayes enjoyed an eight-second advantage on Young, who in turn had a similar advantage on fellow Gixxer rider Hayden. The front three motored on to the finish with the running order unchanged, while Pegram managed to nip past Rapp at the line by a miniscule 0.001 gap.
EBR’s Geoff May placed sixth, followed by ESP BMW’s Josh Holden. The Suzuki trio of Roberto Pietri (Team Venezuela), Chris Clark (Yoshimura) and David Anthony (Kneedragger.com/Motul) round out the top 10.
Notable DNFs include Herrin, who completed only six laps with mechanical woes, and ASB rookie Danny Eslick, who made his EBR 1190RS debut.
Hayes assumes the early ASB points lead, with his pole position and most laps led bonus giving him a seven point advantage over Young. The SuperBike class will compete in another 15-lap race tomorrow, preceding the Daytona 200 finale at DIS.
2012 American SuperBike Daytona Race 1 Results:
Josh Hayes sipped the bubbly on the American SuperBike Race 1 podium, taking his first win on the season.
1. Josh Hayes (Yamaha)
2. Blake Young (Suzuki) +8.332
3. Roger Hayden (Suzuki) +16.201
4. Larry Pegram (BMW) +24.728
5. Steve Rapp (Kawasaki) +24.73
6. Geoff May (EBR) +31.371
7. Jake Holden (BMW) +38.419
8. Robertino Pietri (Suzuki) +40.601
9. Chris Clark (Suzuki) +42.283
10. David Anthony (Suzuki) +42.494
11. Chris Ulrich (Suzuki) +46.091
12. Chris Fillmore (KTM) +46.135
13. Ben Bostrom (Suzuki) +57.081
14. Jordan Burgess (Suzuki) +01:06.5
15. Jeffrey Lampe (Suzuki) +01:23.6
DNF Josh Herrin (Yamaha)
DNF Danny Eslick (EBR)
2012 American SuperBike Points:
1. Josh Hayes, 32
2. Blake Young, 25
3. Roger Hayden, 21
4. Larry Pegram, 18
5. Steve Rapp, 16
6. Geoff May, 15
7. Jake Holden, 14
8. Robertino Pietri, 13
9. Chris Clark, 12
10. David Anthony, 11