This weekend's premier AMA Pro Road Racing events at the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca will be the first races to air on SPEED in a new, same-weekend programming format that was announced last month. SPEED's decision to return to same-day or same-weekend coverage of AMA Pro Road Racing has been welcome news for series competitors, promoters and, most importantly, motorcycle road racing fans.
After a brief experiment in the first half of the year with the Saturday evening studio program AMA Pro Prime Time, SPEED is returning to same-weekend coverage of AMA Pro National Guard American Superbike presented by Parts Unlimited and AMA Pro Daytona SportBike presented by AMSOIL racing beginning with the action from Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, July 3 - 5. The AMA Pro Road Racing action from Mazda Raceway can be seen Sunday, July 5 at 9 p.m. PT (late Sunday/early Monday, July 6 at Midnight ET).
Telephone messages and emails of support have poured into AMA Pro's Daytona Beach headquarters over the last month while several AMA Pro Road Racing stakeholders have gone on record in full support of SPEED's recent decision.
Rick Miner - SPEED SVP Production & Network Operations:
"Plain and simple, this move was a reaction to the fans ... naturally, they wanted to see the races as close to real time as possible. As the longtime television destination for motorcycle racing in North America, we will continue to work very hard with AMA Pro Road Racing and other sanctioning bodies at all levels to move through the current economic challenges in a collective effort to deliver great racing to the fans."
Tim Saunders - Corona Extra Honda Racing Principal:
"It's great news that AMA Pro American Superbike races will be broadcast by SPEED on the same day. Like most fans, I think, I want to see the races as soon as possible in order to enjoy the excitement that comes from not knowing the result. The same day is almost as good as live! I am sure this will boost interest in the sport and draw more fans to the track too. Thanks to all who put this together."
James Casmay - Michael Jordan Motorsports General Manager:
"AMA Pro Racing and SPEED continue to demonstrate their commitment to making any and all changes necessary to further improve AMA Pro Road Racing. Same day television coverage will greatly assist Michael Jordan Motorsports in delivering superior sponsorship value to Jordan Brand, National Guard, Suzuki and all other team partners."
Geoff May - No. 54 National Guard Jordan Suzuki GSX-R1000:
"I'm excited to hear that our races will now be on TV immediately after we race. It's always nice to know the fans can catch the action and participate in the post-event discussions even if they couldn't make it out to the track."
Aaron Yates - No. 23 Brand Jordan Suzuki GSX-R1000:
"It's good that the fans feedback is taken in and listened to. We have some of the best fans in motorsports and it's awesome to know they got what they asked for and can see the Jordan Suzuki team on TV the same weekend we were on the track."
Chris Ulrich - No. 18 Roadracingworld.com Suzuki GSX-R1000:
"The new TV package put together by AMA Pro Racing and SPEED featuring same-day coverage is great news for everyone involved in the sport of motorcycle road racing. I am especially excited for the die-hard racing fans who have stuck with the series through the transition. This will make the great racing we've already seen in 2009 more accessible and hopefully will be the shot in the arm that will energize our great fan base and grow the series."
Michael Barnes - No. 34 GEICO Powersports Buell 1125R:
"I'm very excited to hear our races will be returning to same-day coverage. The fans and our families will appreciate it the most. As for myself and my GEICO Powersports Buell team, whose jobs are to represent our sponsors, we are happy we didn't have to wait until 2010. Thanks to AMA Pro Racing and SPEED!"
Gill Campbell - Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca CEO/General Manager:
"This is great news for our fans and sponsors. It's perfect that the new SPEED coverage starts with the Red Bull U.S. Grand Prix as we have three AMA Pro Road Racing classes running that weekend."
Cameron Gray - M1 Entertainment President/CEO:
"I think this is a big win for motorcycle racing in America. There has been fantastic racing all year and now fans can watch the action same day, in addition I can bring in all Jumbotrons for our Big Kahuna event to give our fans racing action all around the track. So hats off to SPEED and AMA Pro Racing."
Kevin Wittman - New Jersey Motorsports Park General Manager:
"With AMA Pro Road Racing making its inaugural visit to New Jersey Motorsports Park, the move to same day coverage on SPEED is great for our race. People in the Mid-Atlantic region are educating themselves to motorcycle road racing, and the television coverage is important in the build-up to the season finale. Naturally, we're happy to be able to showcase our facility and our sponsors to the rest of the motorcycling community soon after the checkered flag."