HACKING AND HAYDEN TIED COMING INTO FONTANA'S PRO HONDA OILS SUPERSPORT RACE PICKERINGTON, Ohio (April 26, 2005) -- It couldn't be a more perfect scenario for race fans coming to California Speedway on April 29-May 1 for the Suzuki Superbike ...
HACKING AND HAYDEN TIED COMING INTO FONTANA'S PRO HONDA OILS SUPERSPORT RACE
PICKERINGTON, Ohio (April 26, 2005) -- It couldn't be a more perfect scenario for race fans coming to California Speedway on April 29-May 1 for the Suzuki Superbike Challenge. The winners of the last two years of Pro Honda Oils Supersport Championship presented by Shoei at Fontana, Yamaha's Jamie Hacking and Tommy Hayden of Kawasaki, are tied atop the points standings coming into round three of the 10-race series at California Speedway.
Hacking, the 2003 AMA Supersport champ from Denver, N.C, took victory in the most recent round this past weekend in Birmingham, Ala., to even up the score with defending series No. 1 Hayden, of Owensboro, Ky. Something's got to give as the two riders face a Southern California showdown in Fontana.
Hacking, who was in bed for several days leading up to last weekend's race in Alabama with allergies, mustered enough energy to win his 11th-career AMA Supersport win. A victory in Fontana would move him into a tie with Aaron Yates and Tommy Hayden for third on the all-time AMA Supersport wins list.
"I've done well at California Speedway in the past and I think we can be strong there again this year," Hacking said. "I'm a little worried about the Kawasaki's speed. I think we have them covered in the handling department. Fontana has a few tight corners so maybe I can get a little jump off the corners and it won't hurt me so bad on the long straightaways. I want to win back the championship this year. It's a little early to be talking about it, but we've got to keep finishing on the podium every weekend. That's what it takes to do well in this class."
Defending Fontana Supersport winner and No. 1 plate holder Tommy Hayden knows the power of his Kawasaki ZX-6RR will work to his advantage at the Speedway.
"The Kawasaki's always seem to do really well at Fontana," said Hayden, who could tie Mike Smith for second on the all-time AMA Supersport wins list with a victory this weekend. "It looks like it's going to be a very tight championship race this year so I've got to keep focused and try to get as many wins as I can."
Yamaha teammates Jason DiSalvo and Aaron Gobert are in a tight battle for third in the standings. Both riders feel a victory at Fontana could give them the boost needed to challenge Hacking and Hayden for the coveted title.
Tommy Hayden's younger brother and Kawasaki teammate Roger Lee Hayden will be looking to make up points after a mechanical problem in the opener caused him to get off to a slow start this year. At Barber Motorsports Park last weekend he began the long climb back in the standings with a third-place finish, moving him up to 10th. Another strong performance at Fontana could bring Hayden another rung up the ladder.
Ben Spies, always tough at Fontana, will try to give Suzuki its first Supersport victory at California Speedway since Aaron Yates brought home a win for the team in 2002.
Last year Michael Barnes set new standards for a privateer rider in AMA Supersport competition. This season it's Robert Jensen who's turning heads with his rides on his Kneedraggers.com Yamaha. Jensen, from Chaffee, N.D., is ranked a very solid fifth in the standings coming into Fontana.
Bring the whole family out for a great weekend of racing. Kids under 12 are free with a paid adult general admission. For ticket information call California Speedway at (800) 944-7223 or visit the website www.californiaspeedway.com
The Pro Honda Oils Supersport race from California Speedway will be nationally televised on SPEED Channel May 8 at 2 p.m. EST.
About AMA Pro Racing
AMA Pro Racing is the leading sanctioning body for motorcycle sport in the United States. Its properties include the THQ AMA Supercross Series, the AMA Motocross Championship, the AMA Superbike Championship, the AMA Ford Quality Checked Flat Track Championship and the AMA Supermoto Championship. For more information about AMA Pro Racing, visit www.amaproracing.com.