Hayes Takes Mid-Ohio

Henny Ray Abrams | July 18, 2009

Yamaha’s Josh Hayes sped from his first pole to his second American Superbike win with a narrow victory over Jordan Suzuki’s Aaron Yates on a cloudy Saturday afternoon at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Rockstar Makita Suzuki’s Mat Mladin was third.Hayes passed early leader Blake Young (Rockstar Makita Suzuki) early on lap six of 21 in a race that featured a lead pack of seven running mostly nose to tail. Behind the lead duo came Yates, Mladin, Yamaha’s Ben Bostrom, Rockstar Makita Suzuki’s Tommy Hayden, and Foremost Insurance Pegram Racing’s Larry Pegram (Ducati).Yates slipped up the inside of Young in the hard right at the end of the back straight, then set out for Hayes. His best chance came on the 18th lap, but he was balked when the pair encountered backmarker Johnny Rock Page in the fast turn 13 right hand kink. The gap that was .141 of a second ending lap 17; it was .741 of a second ending lap 18.Yates caught back and had a few looks on the final lap, but Hayes was resolute and had a second American Superbike win to go with his earlier victory at Infineon Raceway.The margin of victory was .183 of a second.Mladin had qualified ninth and was away slowly. But gradually he worked his way through the field, making his way into the top three with a pass of Blake young on the 16th lap.Ending the 16th lap Hayes, with Yates close, had 1.733 seconds on Mladin and he couldn’t close the gap. He finished nearly three seconds behind Yates.Yamaha’s Ben Bostrom also passed Young to take fourth, .2 of a second behind Mladin.Then came a gap of two seconds to Pegram, followed by Tommy Hayden, who passed Young on the final lap.National Guard Jordan Suzuki’s Geoff May finished alone in eighth after a late attack from Celtic Racing’s Michael Laverty fell short. In fact Laverty would get passed by Holden Racing’s Jake Holden at the end. Laverty finished tenth.Corona Extra Honda’s Neil Hodgson finished a solitary 11th, 16 seconds in front of Latus Racing’s Taylor Knapp in the debut of the Buell 1125RR.

American Superbike:

1. Josh Hayes (Yamaha)

2. Aaron Yates (Suzuki)

3. Mat Mladin (Suzuki)

4. Ben Bostrom (Yamaha)

5. Larry Pegram (Ducati)

6. Tommy Hayden (Suzuki)

7. Blake Young (Suzuki)

8. Geoff May (Suzuki)

9. Jake Holden (Honda)

10. Michael Laverty (Suzuki)

11. Neil Hodgson (Honda)

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.