JOSH HAYES EARNS AMA PRO RACING SPEED ATHLETE OF THE YEAR NOMINATION PICKERINGTON, Ohio (October 18, 2006) -- Josh Hayes, winner of the 2006 Lockhart-Phillips USA Formula Xtreme Series, earned his first AMA Pro Racing SPEED Athlete of the Year...
JOSH HAYES EARNS AMA PRO RACING SPEED ATHLETE OF THE YEAR NOMINATION
PICKERINGTON, Ohio (October 18, 2006) -- Josh Hayes, winner of the 2006 Lockhart-Phillips USA Formula Xtreme Series, earned his first AMA Pro Racing SPEED Athlete of the Year nomination.
Hayes, 31, from Gulfport, Miss., won the Formula Xtreme title in a tight season-long battle with Yamaha riders Eric Bostrom and Jason DiSalvo. All three riders had a chance at the series coming into the final race of the year. Hayes earned the championship in spectacular fashion, winning a riveting battle over Bostrom and DiSalvo at the Mid-Ohio finale on Oct. 1.
In all Hayes won three Lockhart-Phillips USA Formula Xtreme rounds this year on his Erion Racing Honda CBR600RR and edged Bostrom by seven points in the final standings.
Hayes' Formula Xtreme title was his second AMA national championship. He previously won the AMA Superstock Series in 2003.
This past season was Hayes' 10th year of AMA professional racing. To earn an Athlete of the Year nomination at this point in his career was somewhat unexpected.
"Who would have thought that I would earn this nomination," said Hayes, who is ranked 10th on the all-time Formula Xtreme wins list. "It makes me feel good to know that people are paying attention to the Formula Xtreme class. It was a great series this year and beating someone of Eric Bostrom's caliber made it that much more special to me. This is pretty awesome."
Hayes was a WERA National Champion before becoming a pro with the AMA. His early career was plagued by injury, but he completed this year healthy and it resulted in a championship. It marked the seventh Formula Xtreme Championship for Honda and the makers' third straight in the class.
AMA Pro Racing will honor the champions of American professional motorcycle racing at its 32nd annual AMA Pro Racing Awards Banquet on Sunday evening, Nov. 19 at Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The annual event attracts not only America's best professional racers but also executives and personalities from the motorcycle industry.
The banquet is the conclusion of the nearly year-long AMA Pro Racing season comprised of over 70 professional racing events.
The highlight of the banquet each year is announcing the AMA Pro Racing SPEED Athlete of the Year recipient. Last year Ricky Carmichael became the first rider in AMA history to win the Athlete of the Year Award for the fourth time.
Five nominees for the award will be announced over the next two weeks.
About the AMA Pro Racing SPEED Athlete of the Year Award The AMA Pro Racing SPEED Athlete of the Year Award is the highest honor an AMA competitor can receive. Past recipients include such legendary racers as Bob Hannah, Scott Parker and Kenny Roberts, among others. The award goes to the rider judged to have had the most successful racing year. The rider's career achievements can also be considered if the season complements a remarkable career. A selection panel made up of AMA and AMA Pro Racing staff, field staff and volunteer leadership is named by the AMA CEO and that panel evaluates nominations and determines the final winner.