Team Hammer, Inc., which currently races as Team M4 EMGO Suzuki, has released racer Blake Young from the remainder of his contract with the team. Young’s contract with the team had included both the 2008 and 2009 seasons.
Following negotiations with American Suzuki Motor Corporation, Young was released to allow him to compete for the factory team in the AMA American Superbike class next year. The two parties came to a mutually acceptable deal.
In 2008, Young enjoyed a breakthrough season while riding for Team M4 EMGO Suzuki, scoring his first-career AMA podium in the Superstock race at Daytona, his first career AMA victory in the Superstock race at Road America, and his first career Supersport victory at the Laguna Seca season finale.
“I had a two-year deal with Team Hammer but Suzuki gave me a call about riding for the factory team and that was always a goal of mine,” Young said. “I had a good year with Team M4 EMGO Suzuki. I had a lot of fun with the team and learned a lot working with the crew. It was a great experience for me.
“I really appreciated riding for the team and working with Barry McMahan and Michael Tjon and all the guys. They really helped me advance in a big hurry and I owe this new opportunity to them in large part,” Young added.
Team M4 EMGO Suzuki Crew Chief Keith Perry said, “As of this afternoon we have released Blake from the second year of his ’08-’09 contract with Team Hammer. This release was made at the request of American Suzuki. Following negotiations with them to continue American Suzuki’s support of our team, we came to this agreement.
“With this agreement, Blake will not compete against Team Hammer on a 600, he’ll only compete in the American Superbike class,” said Perry. “We’re sad to see him go but we’re happy that this is another young man who we’ve helped progress. Blake came in as somewhat of an unknown rider and now he’s leaving with a lot of people thinking he’s the one of the hottest riders in the paddock. I feel like we’ve done a very good job with Blake and I know he’s done a good job proving himself. We’re going to enjoy watching his progression, just like we’ve done with many of our alumni that have gone on to do well.”
Perry says the next step is to find a replacement for Young. “We’ve been very proud of our record finding and grooming talented racers like Blake. We’re happy for him because we know he’s taking the next step and we’ve done as much as we can do help that. Now we’ll just turn our attention to helping our other riders advance and we plan to make an announcement soon on who his replacement might be.”