AVONDALE, LA, OCT 7 – Monster Energy Graves Yamaha’s Josh Hayes capped off a dream season in the best possible way, sweeping both legs of the Triumph Big Kahuna New Orleans in front of a host of friends and family who made the drive west from his hometown of Gulfport, Miss. to bear witness to his greatness at NOLA Motorsports Park.
No one was going to beat Hayes today, not on equal terms, and no one is the equal of Hayes these days. He bolted from the pole and set a pace the others could only envy. Lap after lap he stretched his lead over the fight for second, which ended prematurely.
Yoshimura Suzuki’s Blake Young was second when he was taken out by an overexuberant Roger Lee Hayden (National Guard Jordan Suzuki) on the tenth of 18 laps. That handed second to Team Hero’s Danny Eslick (EBR) who was dueling with Jordan Suzuki’s Ben Bostrom. Then Eslick incurred a five second penalty for crossing a white line onto the front straight.
Hayes won the race by 9.194 secs over Bostrom, who had 4.271 secs. on Eslick, though Eslick was in front of him on the track.
The win was Hayes’ record-setting 16th Superbike win of the year and 33rd of his career. That puts him second to Mat Mladin, the all-time Superbike wins leader with 82.
Hayes finished the season with 580 points. Young was second at 432, a deficit of 148 points. Roger Hayden was third with 319 and the absent Josh Herrin finished fourth at 307.
Aaron Yates put in strong performance to take fourth on his second weekend aboard the EvanSteelPerformance.com BMW with Chris Fillmore adding a fifth to the fourth he’d earned a day earlier on the Team KTM/HMC Racing machine.
M4 Suzuki’s Chris Ulrich tied his career best Superbike finish by coming sixth ahead of Team Venezuela’s Robertino Pietri (Suzuki).
David “Aussie Dave” Anthony was eighth for the Kneedraggers.com Suzuki team and Steve Rapp rebounded from a non-finish to take ninth on the MotorcycleSuperstore.com Kawasaki.
AMA Superbike Results:
1. Josh Hayes (Yamaha)
2. Ben Bostrom (Suzuki)
3. Danny Eslick (EBR)
4. Aaron Yates (BMW)
5. Chris Fillmore (KTM)
6. Chris Ulrich (Suzuki)
7. David Anthony (Suzuki)
8. Robertino Pietri (Suzuki)
9. Steve Rapp (Kawasaki)
10. Jordan Burgess (Suzuki)