The 2015 MotoAmerica Series – the new North American Road Racing Championship spearheaded by three-time 5000cc GP Champion Wayne Rainey – heads to Wisconsin’s Road America this weekend for round four of nine.Two stories are at the forefront ahead of Road America – Yamaha’s domination across all classes and the debut of the KTM RC 390 Cup, which we recently profiled.
Road America MotoAmerica SuperbikeLeading the MotoAmerica Superbike Championship as the series heads to the MotoAmerica Subway Superbike Doubleheader is Monster Energy Graves Yamaha’s Cameron Beaubier. But not far behind is Beaubier’s teammate – four-time AMA SuperBike title holder Josh Hayes.The Mississippian Hayes dominated two weeks ago at Virginia International Raceway, sweeping the round. He now has 115, and trails Beaubier by 16 points. The Graves YZF-R1 pilots have won every race so far this season, Hayes and Beaubier earning three wins each.Following in points behind the Yamaha R1 duo are Yoshimura Suzuki’s Jake Lewis and Roger Hayden; the rookie Superbike pilot Lewis has 84 points and his teammate Hayden – the brother of 2006 MotoGP Champion Nicky Hayden – has 68.Fifth in points is Yamaha Blumaq’s Bernat Martinez, the Spanish rider scoring 7-9 at VIR following a career-best of third in race two at Road America in Atlanta.Rounding out the top 10 in points are GEICO Suzuki’s Chris Ulrich (54); Team 21 Suzuki’s Elena Myers (53); Turbo Turtle Racing Honda’s Stefano Mesa (28); Turbo Turtle Racing Honda’s Danny Eslick (24) and BMW S1000RR privateer Matthew Orange (15).Road America MotoAmerica Superstock 1000Leading the way in the Superstock 1000 class is Roadrace Factory Yamaha’s Jake Gagne, who earned four races this season and has 100 points. Following closely behind is TOBC Yamaha’s Taylor Knapp, who has 94 points. In third is O’Hara Racing Yamaha’s Tyler O’Hara with 90 points.Road America MotoAmerica SupersportThe tightest battle in 2015 MotoAmerica is in the Supersport 600cc class with three riders separated by a mere seven points. These riders were also the only ones to win so far this season.Topping the points with 102 is Yamalube/Y.E.S./Graves Motorsports Yamaha’s JD Beach, but his teammate Garrett Gerloff is only a point behind.In third – seven points behind Beach – is former Moto2 pilot and AMA SuperBike Champion Josh Herrin aboard the In Motion/Motorsports.com/Meen Yamaha YZF-R6. Heading into Road America, Beach has won two races, Gerloff one, and Herrin two.“Going into Road America with the points lead… well, I’m still going to treat it like I have been,” Beach says. “I’m going there to do the same job and to ride as hard as I can and as fast as I can and get some wins. Road America is a really nice track. I like how long it is and how it flows really good. I’ve always had a lot of fun there and I’m looking forward to this weekend.”Road America MotoAmerica Superstock 600Leading the way in the Bazzaz Superstock 600 class is Mexico’s Richie Escalante on the self-funded Yamaha YZF-R6. He took the lead from the man who dominated until a crash at race two in VIR – Herrin’s teammate Joe Roberts.Escalante now has 78 points, three ahead of Roberts. In third with 72 points is the only rider to finish on the podium in all four Superstock 600 races.Road America KTM RC 390 CupMotoAmerica’s spec class for riders aged 14-22 – the KMT RC 390 Cup – begins at Road America. The series will feature 24 riders from 14 states, Mexico and Canada. Some known last names will vie for points in the KTM RC390 Cup, including Ezra Beaubier – the brother of Cameron – and Ashton Yates, the son of nine-time AMA Superbike race winner Aaron Yates.The KTM RC 390 Cup will feature two seven-lap finals of the four-mile Road America – one on Saturday at 1 p.m. (EST) and the other at 11:30 a.m. on Sunday.2015 Road America MotoAmerica TV CoverageCBS Sports Network will provide a delayed broadcast of Road America MotoAmerica at 2 p.m. EST Sunday, June 7; the round will be re-aired at 5 p.m. Sunday, June 7, and at 2 a.m. Monday, June 8.All five classes will be streamed live from Road America and can be accessed through www.MotoAmerica.com.Road America Notes:
Road America has played host to AMA Superbike racing without interruption since 1980 when Freddie Spencer won the Superbike National on his Honda. Spencer would go on to win three World Championships.
Of Josh Hayes’ 51 Superbike wins, seven have come at Road America. When Cameron Beaubier beat Hayes in race one last year in Wisconsin, it snapped a five-race Road America win streak for the veteran.
Jake Gagne won both of the Daytona SportBike (now Supersport) races at Road America last year.
MotoAmerica president and three-time 500cc World Champion Wayne Rainey won the Superbike National at Road America in 1986 on a Honda.
The winningest brand of motorcycle in the history of Road America Superbike racing is Suzuki with 14 wins. Honda is second with 12 victories and Yamaha is third with 10.
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This week, in the first segment Editor Don Williams talks to us about the new Kawasaki Versys 650 LT. It’s the middleweight ADV style machine that uses the same 650 parallel twin motor as the Ninja 650, so it’s an excellent performer in a user-friendly, good looking package.
In the second segment, I chat with one of my dearest industry friends—now retired Honda PR executive, Jon Seidel. Jon’s fascinating career spans some 30 years with Big Red, and gave him some great experiences with some incredible machines. I was fortunate enough to be invited on many of the press launches that he organized. His new project is documenting and saving many of the old archives from years gone by—and incidentally, if you have anything that may be of value to the project, please contact us by email at email@example.com and we’ll pass it all on to Jon.
So on that note, from all of us here at Ultimate Motorcycling, we hope you enjoy this episode!