Barber AMA Pro Racing Superbike Preview

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AMA Pro Racing

Two riders are in contention for the AMA Superbike Championship this weekend at Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama, the final round of the 2010 AMA Pro Racing schedule.

With seven wins, Team Graves Yamaha rider Josh Hayes leads the SBK series with 426 points, but Rockstar Makita Suzuki rider Tommy Hayden is only trailing by 22 points. This will be the first year since 1999 that another rider will win the American SBK Championship besides seven-time winner Mat Mladin, and current MotoGP riders Ben Spies and Nicky Hayden.

Hayes has the better results at the 2009 meeting in Barber, finishing 5-4. Hayden finished 4-8, but the track favored Suzuki. Last year, Mladin doubled there, and a Suzuki was in second in both races (Blake Young, Aaron Yates).

Hayes is also coming off a double-win at New Jersey Motorsports Park, but Hayden wasn’t too far away, finishing second in both races.

Quite a distance away from both leaders is Michael Jordan National Guard Suzuki rider Jake Zemke, who has 316 points. Zemke started the 10-race season off with double wins at Daytona, but would only take a podium position three additional times as he struggled with setup on the GSX-R1000 for most of the season.

Zemke, who finished both races at Jersey in sixth, will be aggressive at the 2.38-mile track, trying to keep third away from Pat Clarks Motorsports Yamaha rider Ben Bostrom. Except for a race-2 crash at Jersey, Bostrom had some very positive results in the last six races, the most recent being a third-place finish at race 1 in Jersey, two second-place finishes at VIR and a win at Laguna Seca, when AMA shared the track with MotoGP.

Bostrom also finished third in both races at Barber last year, and will be looking for those kind of results to possibly slip into third for the championship.

With one win this season, Foremost Insurance Ducati rider Larry Pegram sits in fifth place with 276 points. He will also be looking to move up a position for the 2010 final point standings.

Another battle this season is the battle for the $10,000 MotoConnect Superbike Pole Award. With three poles, Hayes leads the competiion going into Barber.

Practice and qualifying begins at 1 p.m. Friday, Sept. 24. Final qualifying will begin at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 25, with race 1 occurring at 3:15 p.m. Race 2 will be at 3:15 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 26.

AMA Superbike on TV

SPEED TV will broadcast Race 1 of American Superbike at Barber Motorsports Park at midnight on Saturday/Sunday, followed by Daytona Sportbike / Supersport coverage at 1 a.m. Sunday. Race 2 of American Superbike will be broadcast at 1 a.m. Monday, and will be preceded by the Daytona Sportbike / Supersport races at midnight.