Ben Bostrom on 2009

Henny Ray Abrams | October 1, 2008
Newly crowned 600cc Supersport Champion Ben Bostrom isn’t slowing down.

The Graves Motorsports Yamaha rider flew to New York City for a whirlwind visit that included a stop in Times Square and a gathering with the general media press where he had a reunion with actor and model Tyson Beckford at an event in the NoHo neighborhood lower Manhattan.

In between Times Square and the media gathering, where two new Yamaha motorcycles, two new scooters, and two new Star Motorcycles were on display, Bostrom sat down at a coffee shop next to the media event to discuss his future. Sipping a mixture of carrot and celery juice, and ginger, Bostrom said he didn’t have a contract and didn’t know where he’d be racing, but hoped he’d remain with Yamaha.

“I really want a challenge,” he said. “This season I ended the season not winning [the last three races] because I was protecting and it left me a little bit empty, which is probably good. It makes you hungry for next season, so I want to start. And it’s five long months before we start again. I just want to ride the class that has everyone in it just to prove the point that I’m back and I look forward to the challenge of racing.

“I’ve had a few teams come over and talk to me and same with World Superbike as well; I’ve had offers to go over there. I do like it here though. And Yamaha has said they want to race.”

He hopes to stay with Yamaha “unless something falls apart, because obviously I don’t have a contract and there’s nothing on the table, which makes it hard as well to talk to your other sponsors. Because even if you’re going to make a helmet deal or boots or whatever you’re going to do” the question is asked, “What series are you riding? I don’t have a deal yet. So you can’t even talk yet with anyone. Obviously, I want to think that Yamaha’s going to have a good deal with the DMG, I guess, and I want to see every factory involved and I want to race against the best guys, that’s the plan.”

Whether all the best riders are on 600’s or 1000’s isn’t a concern.

“I don’t care if it’s 50’s, honestly,” he said.

After spending about 16 hours in the city, Bostrom was going to turn around and fly home to California to get his drivers license renewed, then rent a motorhome and load up his Cannondale mountain bike and his mechanic’s tools before driving to Las Vegas to hook up with 2008 AMA Superbike Champion, and now fellow Yamaha rider, Ben Spies. Spies was announced as the second rider on the Yamaha World Superbike team on Wednesday morning.

A few days later the pair will slowly begin winding their way towards Moab, Utah, for the October 11-12 Suzuki 24 Hours of Moab mountain bike race. Bostrom may lead a team that includes his brother, Eric, his crew chief, Ollie Hutchinson, and three Category 1 professional riders, or he may ride the entire 24 hours himself. Spies is taking it less seriously. His team includes his chiropractor, his cousin, who’s only going to do one lap, a 50-year-old friend, and his manager, Doug Gonda, a Category 3 Criterium racer.

“Ben Bostrom and them, he’s got a couple pro guys, he’s trying to win it,” Spies said. “We’re going to have fun. We just want to finish it. We’ll probably be eating hot dogs and hamburgers during the race.”

Henny Ray Abrams | Contributing Editor

Abrams is the longest-serving contributor at Cycle News. Over the course of his 35-some years of writing and shooting photos, he’s covered events from MotoGP to the Motocross World Championship - and everything in between.