MOTO-ST: Team RoadRacingWorld signs on for 2008

Team First on Board for the SunTrust MOTO-ST Series Opener Daytona Beach, Fla. - First to sign up for the SunTrust MOTO-ST Series season opener March 2 at Daytona International Speedway is the two bike ...

Team First on Board for the SunTrust MOTO-ST Series Opener

Daytona Beach, Fla. - First to sign up for the SunTrust MOTO-ST Series season opener March 2 at Daytona International Speedway is the two bike Suzuki team.

"We are ready to roll," says Chris Ulrich who, along with co-riders Cory West and Michael Barnes will pilot the Number 18 Suzuki in the Buell Motorcycle Company SuperSport class (SST). "We nailed the victory at the 8 Hours At Daytona at the end of last season and now we are back to do it again. Being Number One is what racing is all about and being the first team to enter the race at Daytona sends a message to the competition that we are definitely ready to go for it."

Hard-chargers from start to finish, teammates Cory West and Michael Barnes are also well versed in what it takes to win. "I like this series," says West. "The competition is stiff and that makes it challenging. It is my kind of racing. We had a great run last October and now we are eager for a repeat."

Barnes has been racing professionally for the last 16 years and has just about ridden every type of race bike there is. From 250 Grand Prix bikes to stock-based supersport machines to superbikes, his versatility and skill are well documented.

"I'm really looking forward to this event," says Barnes with obvious enthusiasm. "Our team is definitely strong and extremely solid and I think our chances of doing well are good."

Equally as prepared to run for the win is the No. 3 Suzuki of Robertino Pietri and Martin Cardenas, who took third place at the season finale last October.

"We are definitely excited about returning to Daytona," echo both Pietri and Cardenas. "We had a great run at the 8 Hours. Despite starting at the back of the SST Grid we managed to move into third place by the end of the second hour and stayed right in the running for the remaining six hours. This time out our goal is to make it a One/Two Suzuki finish.

The son of well-known racer and journalist John Ulrich, Chris Ulrich has spent most of his life in and around racing. A native Californian, he started competing at the age of 13 and in 2001 he became the first second-generation WERA National Endurance Champion.

"Team racing is both physically and mentally demanding," he explains. "Wrestling a 400 lb. bike around a track for 40 -- 80 minutes can really take a toll on you. It is definitely a sport for the fit. In short, iff you want to win, you have to be on top of your game and that means you need to be both mentally and physically fit. We put a lot of emphasis on training. Our program includes motocross, cycling and running, as well as weight training. It helps with that all-important extra edge."

"Working out with Chris has really helped me a lot," says Pietri, who hails from Caracas, Venezuela. Going into his first pro-season in America, Pietri has raced in his native country for the past eight years earning the 2006 Venezuelan and Latin America Superbike Championship and the 600cc Supersport Championship. "Now I want to make my mark here. I have a great teammate in Martin Cardenas and we are a good fit together."

Cardenas, a native of Medellin, Columbia, started his racing career in motocross and from the first day, his natural talent and skill was obvious. Moving to the pavement in 2002, this young man earned himself a sponsored ride for 2003. The following year he took top honors in the Spanish CEV Series Supersport Championship. Continuing to climb the ladder of success, Cardenas has also showed his skill in the MotoGP World Championship and in the SunTrust MOTO-ST Series.

"I am really happy to be riding at Daytona," he says with a smile. Every rider dreams of winning on this world renowned track and I would like nothing better than to share this honor with my teammate."

The kick-off event for the 2008 Daytona 200 Week by Honda, the SunTrust MOTO-ST Series not only showcases the Buell Motorcycle Company SuperSport Twins class (SST) which includes motorcycles producing between 90-120 horsepower but also the BMW GrandSport Twins class (GST) covering motorcycles producing 75-90 horsepower and Sport Twins (ST) for machines under 75 horsepower. The action will indeed be intense when a full field of riders thunder off the Grid at Daytona International Speedway for the SunTrust MOTO-ST Series season opener March 2.

-credit: moto-st

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About this article
Series Other bike
Drivers Michael Barnes , Chris Ulrich , Cory West , Robertino Pietri , Martin Cardenas