Suzuki’s Hayden Tops Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test at COTA

Suzuki’s Hayden Tops Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test at COTA
2017 Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test: Suzuki's Roger Lee Hayden

Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test Results

The two-day Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica test at Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in Austin, Texas, wrapped up Wednesday with Yoshimura Suzuki’s Roger Lee Hayden topping the time sheets in the Superbike class. In the Supersport class, the reigning champion Garrett Gerloff (Monster Energy/Yamalube/Y.E.S./Graves Yamaha YZF-R6) was once again fastest.

When the test wrapped up, Hayden was one of three Superbike riders to break into the 2:08s. The GSX-R1000 pilot posted a best of 2:08.305, finishing 0.127 of a second ahead of Tuesday’s leader, Hayden’s teammate Toni Elias, a Moto2 Champion.

Suzuki’s Hayden Tops Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test at COTA
2017 Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test: Suzuki’s Roger Lee Hayden

Claiming third was two-time reigning MotoAmerica Superbike Champion Cameron Beaubier. The Monster Energy/Graves Yamaha YZF-R1 pilot was just over a half-second slower than Hayden, and the final rider to post under 2:09.

Hayden, who finished second behind Elias during Tuesday’s testing at COTA, was 0.459 of a second faster than Beaubier’s top time at last year’s Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica test.

Hayden was also 0.846 of a second faster than his pole time for last year’s Austin MotoAmerica round. All the top riders during Wednesday testing were using the latest generation of Dunlop qualifying tires.

“That felt good that last session,” Hayden said. “Not just the qualifier, but with the softer race tire I did a bunch of 2:09s there so I was really excited about that. I was actually going to try to keep trying to go and see how many low 9s I could do, but the boys wanted me to come in and try the qualifiers. That’s always fun, the qualifiers, having so much grip and going for it one lap. Overall, I’m really happy.

“We got through a lot of stuff and being fast from the get-go helps a lot. We kinda hit a little bit of a wall yesterday afternoon and this morning we got stuck at a lap time and then this afternoon we started making steps again. We lost a session due to weather and another with an accident, but we leave here with a lot of information. We need to improve in some areas and we still have a long ways to go, but I’m ready to get this season going.”

2017 Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test: Yamaha's Cameron Beaubier
2017 Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test: Yamaha’s Cameron Beaubier

Fourth fastest went to four-time Superbike Champion Josh Hayes, the Monster Energy/Graves Yamaha rider posting a best of 2:09.696.

Quicksilver Latus Motors Kawasaki’s Bobby Fong was the fastest of the Superstock 1000 riders and was up amongst the Superbikes on his ZX-10R. Fong dropped down to a best of 2:09.745 in the final session on a bike that has yet to be modified to the new Superstock specs. Fong won both Superstock 1000 races at COTA a year ago, MotoAmerica reports.

Sixth fastest was Millennium Technologies/Lucas Oil/KWR’s Kyle Wyman, the team owner/racer lapping at 2:10.521 to best Wheels In Motion/Western Services/Meen Yamaha’s Josh Herrin. Yamalube/Westby Racing’s Mathew Scholtz, Broaster Chicken Honda’s Jake Gagne and Fly Racing/Motul/ADR Motorsports’ Cameron Petersen rounded out the top 10 from today’s sessions, MotoAmerica reports.

2017 Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test, Supersport Results

Gerloff took the top time Wednesday, knocking 1.4 seconds off his best Tuesday time. Gerloff posted a best lap of 2:11.728—0.271 of a second under his pole position time from last year’s Supersport race at COTA.

M4 ECSTAR Suzuki’s Valentin Debise finished 0.658 of a second behind Gerloff, and was followed by Gerloff’s Yamaha teammate JD Beach, the 2015 MotoAmerica Supersport Champion.

Rickdiculous Racing’s Daytona Anderson jumped up to fourth fastest, a tad over half a second faster than yesterday’s fourth-placed rider Brandon Paasch on the second M4 ECSTAR Suzuki. Paasch slipped down a spot to fifth.

2017 Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test: Yamaha's Garrett Gerloff
2017 Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test: Yamaha’s Garrett Gerloff

“It was a good day,” Gerloff said. “We figured out some things with this new bike. Even though there are some things that are similar to last year, it is a new bike and we have to find different settings for the tracks we go to.

“The tracks we have been testing on are a lot more flowing and fast and not a lot of hard braking compared to this track where it doesn’t flow very well and there’s a lot of hard braking. They demand two different setups and we struggled a bit with that yesterday. Today, with the better track conditions and everything, we were able to figure out some things that we couldn’t yesterday with the wind. Everything is feeling good and ready for the race in three weeks.”

The 2017 MotoAmerica season begins in three weeks at COTA, running as a support series for round three of the 2017 MotoGP Championship. Practice gets underway Friday, April 21.

Photography by Brian J. Nelson

2017 Dunlop Preseason MotoAmerica Test Results, Day Two:


1. Roger Hayden (Suzuki) 2:08.305
2. Toni Elias (Suzuki) 2:08.432
3. Cameron Beaubier (Yamaha) 2:08.827
4. Josh Hayes (Yamaha) 2:09.696
5. Bobby Fong (Kawasaki) 2:09.745
6. Kyle Wyman (Yamaha) 2:10.521
7. Josh Herrin (Yamaha) 2:10.627
8. Mathew Scholtz (Yamaha) 2:10.977
9. Jake Gagne (Honda) 2:11.122
10. Cameron Petersen (Kawasaki) 2:11.506


1. Garrett Gerloff (Yamaha) 2:11.728
2. Valentin Debise (Suzuki) 2:12.386
3. JD Beach (Yamaha) 2:12.402
4. Daytona Anderson (Yamaha) 2:15.273
5. Brandon Paasch (Suzuki) 2:15.848
6. Nick McFadden (Suzuki) 2:16.153
7. Lucas Silva (Yamaha) 2:17.183
8. Brandon Cleland (Suzuki) 2:17.872
9. JC Camacho (Yamaha) 2:18.961
10. Caroline Olsen (Yamaha) 2:19.227


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