VIR Cancels Round 8 of AMA Pro Racing
2011 AMA Pro Racing
After a successful AMA Pro Racing event at Mid-Ohio, some sour news arrived Monday – Round 8 of the series at Virginia International Raceway (VIR) has been canceled.
AMA says it attempted to "preserve the originally scheduled Aug. 12-14 event," but the Suzuki White Lightening National was canceled by officials at VIR just a month before the action.
The AMA received the news late on Monday that VIR will not be "hosting or promoting" the 2011 AMA Pro Racing (AMA Superbike, AMA Daytona SportBike, AMA Supersport, XR1200) event.
David Atlas (AMA pro Racing COO and Managing Member) says: "AMA Pro Racing has made VIR a part of its season calendar for the past decade, and I am gravely disappointed by the impact this will have on our paddock, fans, and other series participants. I assure all of those involved parties that a significant effort was made to negotiate an arrangement that would have preserved the event."
This cancellation of Virginia International Raceway means only eight rounds will be on the 2011 AMA Pro Road Racing schedule that feature all four road racing disciplines (American Superbike, Daytona SportBike, Supersport and XR1200). Remaining will be Laguna Seca (combined with MotoGP), and the final round at New Jersey Motorsports Park.
AMA Pro Racing has considered the Red Bull Indianapolis GP an official AMA round, although only the Vance & Hines XR1200 series will be on the schedule. This event was created to fill a contact for SPEED TV, which states that AMA Pro Racing must host 10 rounds.
But with the cancellation of VIR, there may be a breach of contract. This wouldn’t have been a problem if the series was able to schedule final round in Fontana this October, but the idea was shot down due to the track not having enough time to promote the AMA event. And without enough promotion or sponsors, the money wouldn’t be available to host a race weekend.
At Mid-Ohio this pass weekend, before the cancellation of VIR, the rumors in the paddock were that AMA Pro Racing may possibly add another race at New Jersey Motorsports Park the Labor Day Monday following the race weekend, but again, nothing has been confirmed.
In a statement, VIR commented on possible racing there in 2012: "No AMA Pro Racing event will take place at VIR in 2011. If circumstances are conducive in 2012, VIR looks forward to renewing its relationship with AMA Pro Racing."
Regarding this years canceled VIR race, AMA Pro Racing says it will refund all event-specific fees paid to AMA Pro Racing by series participants.
The 2.25-mile, 18-turn "country club" racetrack has been on the AMA Pro Racing schedule since 2001. In the AMA Superbike class, Mat Mladin has the most wins at Virginia International Raceway, the Australian doubling at VIR from 2005-2007 aboard the Rockstar Makita Suzuki GSX-R1000.