News 5 Feb 2010

AMA SBK: Yamaha expands strong AMA Superbike line up

Yamaha Motor Corporation U.S has announced an expanded race effort for the 2010 AMA Pro Road Racing Championship season, adding the Pat Clark Motorsports Team, Team Project 1 Atlanta, and Team MPH Racing to the Yamaha family. These new efforts, coupled with a 13 year relationship with the championship-winning Graves Motorsports team, bring a renewed energy into the series for the new year.

The new season will see long established partner Graves Motorsports assuming an expanded role as the #4 R1 Superbike of Josh Hayes as well as the championship proven R6’s of #6 Tommy Aquino and #8 Josh Herrin will race under the Graves Motorsports banner.

Hayes captured seven wins in the 2009 AMA American Superbike class on the world championship-winning crossplane crankshaft R1 enroute to second in the championship and has spent the off season preparing to be on the top step of the podium. Herrin returns as the veteran of the Graves team having narrowly missed the AMA Daytona Sportbike Championship via his four wins. Returning teammate Tommy Aquino proved he belongs at the top level of AMA racing last season with his near wins and four podium appearances.

New to the Yamaha Motorsports family will be the Pat Clark Motorsports Team which will be home to the 2008 AMA Daytona Sportbike Champion Ben Bostrom and the 2008 AMA Horizon Award winner Chris Clark.

One of the most popular riders in the paddock, Ben begins his fourth season for Yamaha and as reigning champion of the Daytona 200, the most prestigious race on the AMA tour. Bostrom will compete in the American Superbike class on the # 155 R1 prepared by Pat Clark Motorsports. Joining Ben on the R1 will be the # 48 of Superbike Rookie Chris Clark whose past experience combined with Ben’s guidance will make for an exciting combination. The team will be managed by racing veteran Ron Heben.

The new Project 1 Atlanta Team will field Dane Westby and South African rider Clinton Seller in the AMA Daytona Sportbike class on the championship proven Graves Motorsports prepared R6. Oklahoma rider Dane Westby returns following four top 10 finishes in the class last season while Clinton Seller scored a top ten finish last season in his only appearance in the series. The team will be managed by Perry Melneciuc who brings his own AMA top level racing experience plus the technical support and winning attitude of Chuck Graves to the team.

Also returning with an expanded program is history-making racer Melissa Paris. As the highest placing female rider ever in the Daytona 200 and the first woman to qualify for an FIM World Championship Supersport round, her results continue to improve with experience. Competing on the newly formed MPH Racing Team, Melissa will compete in the AMA Daytona Sportbike class with support from Yamaha and GYTR.

“I couldn’t be more excited for our effort this year,” said Keith McCarty, division manager for Yamaha’s racing department. “All of our associated teams will receive direct support from our in house management and our factory technicians, and this should give us the competitive edge to win!”