Yoshimura Suzuki Factory Racing’s Toni Elias and Roger Hayden both finished on the podium in Sunday’s MotoAmerica Superbike Race 2 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, part of the combined World Superbike/MotoAmerica weekend.
Defending MotoAmerica Superbike Champion Elias made a string of comebacks after running off the racing line numerous times during the race. Elias’ years of experience shone through as was able to overcome the problems and charge forward on his Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000 from way back late in the race to finish a strong second - something that appeared nearly impossible earlier in the contest.
Elias leaves Monterey ranked second in the championship, 29 points behind leader Cameron Beaubier (203-174).
Hayden came home in third to round out the podium in Sunday’s race. It marked a weekend of consistency with Hayden enjoying his best weekend of the season, after also standing on the rostrum taking third in Saturday’s Race 1. As a result Hayden jumped from 11th to eighth in the championship standings at the halfway point of the season.
Sunday’s race was a tremendous turnaround for Elias, who suffered two crashes in Saturday’s race, yet still managed to finish in the points, twice picking up his bike and crossing the line in 13th.
“It was a great feeling to come back and finish second today,” said Elias said. “After the crashes of yesterday and then finding neutrals many times today, to be able to finish second feels like a victory. We will be testing before the next race and we will work hard to comeback in this championship.”
For Hayden positive momentum continues to build after a rough start to 2018. He rarely put a wheel wrong the entire race weekend and earned his third consecutive podium result.
“This was the best race for me so far this year,” Hayden explained. “I feel like we are getting better every time I get on the bike. We still have a big mountain to climb to get back in the championship, but for sure we are heading in the right direction.”
It was a picture perfect weekend in the scenic Monterey Bay area with sunny skies and warm temperatures. A weekend total of 64,425 fans attended the race, the biggest crowd for the event since returning to the World Superbike calendar in 2013.
Yoshimura Suzuki and the MotoAmerica Superbike Championship now look ahead to the kickoff of the second half of the season in next month’s round, the Championship of Utah at the Utah Motorsports Campus in Tooele, Utah on July 20-22.
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For additional information visit: www.motoamerica.com
You can keep up with the team’s progress by visiting yoshimura-racing.comand www.suzukicycles.com/Racing and via YouTube at www.youtube.com/SuzukiCycles
Team Yoshimura Suzuki is grateful for the support of their sponsors: Yoshimura R&D, Suzuki Motor of America, Motul, Dunlop, Tucker Rocky, Team Suzuki, Shorai, Sunstar, MWR Racing Filters, NGK Spark Plugs, RK Racing Chain, Zeta High Performance Products, and Chicken Hawk Racing.
About Suzuki: Suzuki Motor of America, Inc. (SMAI) distributes Motorcycles, ATVs, Scooters, Outboard Motors and Automotive Parts and Accessories via an extensive dealer network throughout 49 states. Suzuki Motor Corporation (SMC), based in Hamamatsu, Japan, is a diversified worldwide manufacturer of Motorcycles, ATVs, Scooters, Automobiles, Outboard Motors and related products. Founded in 1909 and incorporated in 1920, SMC has business relations with 201 countries/regions. For more information, visit www.suzuki.com.
About Yoshimura R&D of America: Yoshimura is “The Leader in Performance” and has been for more than 55 years. With unmatched skills, knowledge, and passion for racing, Yoshimura is on the forefront of the aftermarket exhaust industry. Yoshimura pipes are race bred and feature the same legendary performance, fit and quality that has been their trademark for more than five decades. To learn more about Yoshimura and view their wide variety of performance products, visit www.yoshimura-rd.com.