Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course has a long and distinguished history in all forms of motorsports. Many legendary names from every facet of racing have competed and won at the picturesque 2.4-mile, 15-turn road course through the Ohio countryside. Can-Am, Trans-Am, Indy Car, IROC, SCCA and GRAND-AM, as well as many other historic groups, have raced at this track over the years. But there is another form of motorsports that has always had a very prominent role in the vast history of Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course and that tradition continues in July with a virtual plethora of motorcycle racing and activities.
Of all the famous names in motorsports that have won at this traditional stop on everyone's racing calendar, AMA Pro Road Racing has delivered their own role of honor when it comes to winners at this technically challenging road course. Legendary motorcycle riders who have won at Mid-Ohio read like a hall of fame list, Fred Merkel, Kevin Schwantz, Bubba Shobert, Scott Russell, Doug Chandler, Miguel Duhamel, Colin Edwards, Nicky Hayden, Ben Spies, Jason Pridmore and Mat Mladin are among the many great names to grace the top step of the podium at Mid-Ohio.
Then there are the current AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike riders who have posted victories at Mid-Ohio that will be back for the July 16-18 Honda Super Cycle Weekend presented by Dunlop Tire
. This list begins with last year's double winner, Josh Hayes, and early-season National Guard SuperBike winner Jake Zemke. Ben Bostrom and his brother Eric Bostrom both have wins and Eric will be returning to AMA Pro SuperBike competition for the first time since 2008. Tommy Hayden has a win at Mid-Ohio (as do his brothers Nicky and Roger Lee, but only Tommy will be competing). Chris Ulrich won in the Superstock class in 2002 and he will be looking to add to his solid points tally this season with another win at this classic venue.
This year's action at Mid-Ohio should be a continuation of the great racing seen from the drop of the green flag back in March at Daytona International Speedway when Zemke and his National Guard Jordan Suzuki took a pair of wins under the watchful eyes of team owner Michael Jordan. Then the momentum shifted to Ohio's own Larry Pegram as he took a popular win at the second race in California with his Foremost Insurance Ducati.
Rockstar Makita Suzuki rider Tommy Hayden then took his inaugural win in the SuperBike class which was followed by his teammate Blake Young taking his first series wins at the next race at Road Atlanta. Josh Hayes and his Team Graves Yamaha team then took center stage with Hayes delivering a pair of totally dominant performances at Infineon Raceway and adding another win at the last race at Road America.
Hayden also took a win at Road America and will have a new teammate at Mid-Ohio and beyond as Young has suffered an injury incurred during a testing session. Young's replacement, reigning Australian SuperBike Champion Josh Waters was also unfortunately injured during testing and his status was unclear as of today.
As mentioned above, Eric Bostrom will also be returning to action at Mid-Ohio aboard the new Cycle World Attack Performance Yoshimura Suzuki in the first of four races for the team. Eric's brother Ben and his Pat Clark Racing Yamaha teammate Chris Clark have been regular frontrunners, Ben taking a couple of second place finishes at Infineon. He last won at Mid-Ohio in 2008.
Another former winner at Mid-Ohio, Ulrich will be aboard his M4 Monster Energy Suzuki along with his teammate, Jake Holden. Series regular Johnny Rock Page will also be competing at Mid-Ohio after missing the last race.
The overall points battle in the National Guard SuperBike championship has Hayden (229) leading, just one point ahead of Hayes (228) with Zemke (215) in third place The absent Young (197) is fourth ahead of Pegram (170) with Ben Bostrom (149) and Ulrich (125) in sixth and seventh respectively. Eighth in points is Taylor Knapp (107), who has been doing a great job with his small but effective team. Bostrom's teammate Chris Clark (80) is in ninth and rounding out the top ten is Canadian Brett McCormick (69) on the second Jordan Motorsports Suzuki doing a fine job filling in for Aaron Yates, who continues to recover at his Georgia home in anticipation of a return later this season.
Practice and the first round of qualifying begin on Friday, July 16th. Final qualifying and race one of two will be Saturday, July 17th. Also on Saturday will be the Fan Walk with all three AMA Pro Road Racing classes on the grid. The second National Guard SuperBike race, rider autograph session and second grid walk will be Sunday, July 18th. Visit www.midohio.com
for ticket and further information. Visit www.amaproracing.com
for full standings and series information.
SPEED TV will televise both Mid-Ohio rounds of AMA Pro National Guard SuperBike racing in same-weekend coverage. Race One will be broadcast late Saturday, July 17, 2010 at 11:00 p.m. ET (8 p.m. PT) with Race Two debuting late Sunday, July 18, 2010 at 1:00 a.m. ET (10 p.m. PT). A full TV Schedule can be found at www.speedtv.com