AMA Pro Road Racing season finale gives EBR riders a cavalier attitude
NEWS September 25, 2013
Photo by Brian J Nelson
Courtesy of Geiger Media:
SALINAS, Calif. (Sept. 25) - The 14th and final race of the GEICO Motorcycle AMA Pro Road Racing season has EBR pros Geoff May and Aaron Yates arriving at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca with a go-for-broke mentality.
"It's time to win or crash trying," May said. "That's kind of the attitude to have because there's no reason to hold anything back. I can move up a few spots in the points but I can't move down, so I really have nothing to lose.
"No matter what, I think something drastic is going to happen at Laguna."
May, who rides the Team Hero/AMSOIL EBR, and stablemate Aaron Yates, rider of the AMSOIL/Hero EBR, already secured top-10 positions in the final rankings, a respectable result considering the break-neck development of their racing machines. Currently, May is eighth in the points, followed by Yates in ninth.
But racers always want more, and the duo long for season-best finishes in California in their second visit of the year to Laguna Seca's historic 2.23-mile, 11-turn layout.
"We had a pretty good race last time we were there," said Yates, who has seven top-10 results this season. "The setup we had was decent and we've improved on it since then. What we finished with (at the last tour stop) in New Jersey was really close to being on the money. I'm looking forward to getting back on track and finding the podium.
"I firmly believe we've got a shot at a good finish, and we'd like to end the year on a strong note for all the guys on this team that have put in so much hard work."
The AMA Pro Road Racing finale will run within the structure of the FIM Superbike World Championship, which is also taking place over the weekend.
"Racing in front of those World Superbike crews, I know our guys will want to put on an extra good showing," Yates said. "I believe it will happen. Everybody has been there before and have a handle on what the track is like. It's going to be work but interesting to see how it all goes down.
"Laguna is a flowing track and it's not as abrasive as some of the other tracks we go to. We won't have much issue with tires. It's going to be cooler since we're racing in the morning, but I think our Dunlops will hold up fine. Even if they slide around a little, that's ok with me. I like it like that."
May says having the high-horsepower World Superbikes put some extra rubber down on the track surface will help the EBRs perform to peak capacity.
"I love Laguna because you can really ride hard there," said May, who has 11 top-10 results, including the last nine races in a row. "You don't suffer the tire deterioration that you have at some other tracks because it's so smooth there. The groove will be filled in nicely with all the traffic it's going to get, so that will play to our favor. We've found some grip and a little extra horsepower since the last race, so we're ready to rip it up."
Friday's action includes a practice session at 10:15 a.m. and the first qualifying round at 1:30 p.m. On Saturday, Yates and May will have one more look at the track at 12:40 p.m. during the final round of qualifying. The 23-lap, 50-mile main event is slated to begin at 10:40 a.m., Sunday.
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