Young get first Supersport win, Bostrom takes title Sunday's Pro Honda Oils Supersport finale at Laguna Seca was a dramatic and historic affair. Team M4 EMGO Suzuki's Blake Young earned the first Supersport win of his career, leading home Graves...
Young get first Supersport win, Bostrom takes title
Sunday's Pro Honda Oils Supersport finale at Laguna Seca was a dramatic and historic affair. Team M4 EMGO Suzuki's Blake Young earned the first Supersport win of his career, leading home Graves Motorsports Yamaha's Ben Bostrom, who claimed the 2008 (and possibly final) class championship.
Young sat in second behind teammate Martin Cardenas as the laps wound down. The Colombian made a small mistake on the final lap, spinning up the hill and allowing Young to pull alongside as they competed to be the one to give Suzuki their first Supersport win since Ben Spies was triumphant at Infineon Raceway way back in 2004. The two stayed together and touched knees heading into the following corner, forcing Cardenas wide and ultimately into the dirt in a heartbreaking effort that was oh-so close to becoming his first-career AMA win.
The victory made for a terrific 21st birthday present for the Wisconsin native. "My first podium in the Supersport class feels really good and it feels even better to be a win.
"We put our heads down and raced real hard. Hats off to Martin Cardenas, my teammate, he rode really hard. We ended up getting together there and he went off the track. It was an unfortunate situation because he deserved to win as much as I did. We were just out there racing really hard. With that said, I've got to dedicate this first win to my guys at M4 EMGO Suzuki."
Bostrom rode quick and clean. He pressured Young to the flag but didn't make any rash maneuvers with the championship on the line. He ultimately finished second, just 0.231 seconds behind the victor. "When you have the bike that I've had all season, it really makes for a fun season. I was really, really inspired and that's where I'm at right now. It's going to be a long five months of winter. Let me tell you, I just want to get back on the track."
Bostrom's teammate, Josh Herrin, inherited the final spot on the podium after Cardenas was knocked out of contention, winning a spirited battle for the spot with Attack Kawasaki's Chaz Davies. Cardenas came back to finish ninth.
Earlier in the contest, a Nicky Moore crash brought the race to a momentary halt while working lap 10. Up until that point Cardenas had controlled from majority of the race from the front, taking the lead from polesitter Bostrom on lap 3 and holding it until the red flag. The former 250GP star got another of his trademark terrific launches from the second row and then showed the speed to run at the front.
He wasn't having any luck opening a gap, however, as Bostrom and his teammate, Herrin, as well as Cardenas' teammate, Young, formed a four-bike freight train up until the stoppage. Erion Honda's Josh Hayes was at the tail end of the group as well until bowing out with a mechanical problem on lap 7, ending his bid for a third straight Supersport win to close the season. He did manage to make the restart, however, rejoining the fray a couple laps in arrears.
Hayes' teammate and championship runner-up, Jake Zemke, finished fifth, ahead of Team M4 EMGO Suzuki's Cory West, Graves Yamaha-backed Tommy Aquino, and Safety First Suzuki's Bobby Fong. Graves-backed Michael Beck rounded out the top ten behind Cardenas.
Bostrom ended the year with 361 points to Zemke's 330. Hayes took third place in the title race, followed by Young and Herrin.