Superbike Pole To Hayes

Paul Carruthers | March 11, 2011

DAYTONA BEACH, FL, MARCH 11 – Monster Energy Graves Yamaha’s Josh Hayes made a statement today during final qualifying for this afternoon’s first of two AMA Superbike races at Daytona International Speedway, the Mississippian snatching pole position from championship rival Tommy Hayden on his final lap of the Speedway.Hayes saved his best for last, riding his factory Yamaha R1 to a 1:38.228 on his final lap to take the sixth Superbike pole of his career from Tommy Hayden and the Rockstar Makita Suzuki GSX-R1000 by just .094 of a second in a frenzied final five minutes.Hayes thought he’d end up second after running off the track on what he thought would be his good lap.”I thought, ‘Maybe I will just keep going just in case and see if I can catch him before the checkered flag came out,’ ” Hayes said. “I went for it and was quite surprised by the lap time because I had to pass some people in some of the tighter parts of the track. I was off my normal lines so didn’t think it would be the lap that counted. I’m pleased and I’m excited. I would have been happy with second so to start off 2011 with a pole position, it’s great.”Hayden led the session for most of the way after putting in a 1:38.610 with about 25 minutes to go. He improved that to a 1:38.322 with about 10 minutes to go and it looked like it might hold up. But Hayes had an answer and he gave it right at the end.Tommy Hayden (pictured) held on to finish second in the session, with his brother Roger Lee Hayden third in his debut race weekend on the National Guard-backed Michael Jordan Motorsports Suzuki GSX-R1000.Blake Young will complete the front row for the two races, the Rockstar Makita Suzuki man lapping at 1:38.767. Next came Ben Bostrom, the veteran set to lead row two in his first race for the Michael Jordan Motorsports Suzuki team.Non-defending Daytona SportBike Champion Martin Cardenas also had a good debut in the Superbike class, the Colombian ending up sixth. Cardenas and Bostrom will be joined on the second row by BMW-mounted Chris Perris and Cycle World Attack Kawasaki’s Eric Bostrom.Foremost Insurance-backed Larry Pegram and M4 Suzuki’s Chris Ulrich rounded out the top 10.

American SuperBike Qualifying

1. Josh Hayes (Yamaha) 1:38.228

2. Tommy Hayden (Suzuki) 1:38.322

3. Roger Hayden (Suzuki) 1:38.614

4. Blake Young (Suzuki) 1:38.767

5. Ben Bostrom (Suzuki) 1:38.855

6. Martin Cardenas (Suzuki) 1:38.980

7. Chris Peris (BMW) 1:39.023

8. Eric Bostrom (Kawasaki) 1:39.192

9. Larry Pegram (BMW) 1:39.162

10. Chris Ulrich (Suzuki) 1:40.531

Paul Carruthers | Editor

Paul Carruthers took over as the editor of Cycle News in 1993 after serving as associate editor since starting his career at the publication in 1985. Carruthers has covered every facet of the sport in his near-28-year tenure at America's Daily Motorcycle News Source.