Cycle News - Archive Issues - 2000's

Cycle News 2002 09 25

Cycle News is a weekly magazine that covers all aspects of motorcycling including Supercross, Motocross and MotoGP as well as new motorcycles

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o o o o o o o o o o o (- - -- -)( ---.--) .. -i'--',I--' __ -" "_ _ i _' _ __ _ __ Terry Poovey (ATK) won the Pro Singles class at the Formula USA Sacra· mento Mile in Sacramento. California. on September 14. moving into sole possession of the Drag Specialties National Dirt Track Series points lead with three rounds remaining. Joe Kopp (KTM) finished second. and Bryan Smith (Hon) finished third. Kopp (H-Dl won the Super Singles & Twins Challenge. J.R. Schnabel (H-Dl finished second aboard Rich King' s factory Harley-DaVidson XR750 after King opted not to ride due to lingering injuries from the AMA Vernon Mile. Geo Roeder II (H-Dl was third. ~ o Fred Hoess (Hus) won the overall at round six of the AMA/FMF National Enduro Series. hosted by the King Phillip Trail Riders in Wrentham. Massachusetts, on September 15. Kevin Hines (Yam) was second overall, with Matt Stavish (Hus) third. o o o o o o o o o o o ~ Russ Pearson (Yam) scored his first overall win of the 2002 Hare & Hound season and wrapped up the 250cc title at the Sand City 100, held near Grand View in Southwestern Idaho. Pearson was followed across the line by his cousin David Pearson (Kaw), with Kurt Caselli (KTM) rounding out the top three. Other Expert-class winners included David Rees (125cc). Brad McNew Net), Don Dawson (Senior) and Ron Nash (Super Senior). Ty Davis, the series points leader coming into thiS round, and Brian Brown each suffered mechanical problems and failed to finish. With the win, Pearson is now tied with DaviS on 135 points, while Brown trails with 102. But the riders must throw out their two lowest scores, and Davis, with two firsts and three seconds coming into the round, is in a much stronger position than Pearson (or Brown). An overall win at either of the two remaining rounds will give DaviS the title, while Brown and Pearson each need two overall wins to clinch the top spot. o o o o ~ After weeks of speculation that Nicky Hayden would be joining YalTlllha's MotoGP effort for the 2003 season, Honda used its first right of refusal to pull the rug out from under its rival's feet. signing Hayden to a MotoGP contract in the fmal hours. And they did so in time to announce the deal at the Honda dealer convention in Chicago, Illinois, on Thursday, September 12. "It's a big deal, and I'm really excited," Hayden said while en route to the Tunica Short Track in Mississippi on Friday, September 13. "It's an awesome opportunity for me. I realize that I've got a lot to leam, and It will be a big adjustment, but it's what I've been working for my whole life.' When asked just how close he was to signing a Yamaha contract, the 21-year-old Hayden sajd; "My present contract with Honda said that they had the first right of refusal. They had 14 days, and that's how it worked out.' Hayden is still unsure which MotoGP team he 101m be riding for, though most are speculating that he will go straight to the top team· Repsol Honda - and will team with World Champion Valentino Rossi. "They haven't said which team it will be yet, but it's an HRC team - a full·factory team," Hayden said. As for testing the RC21] V four-stroke MotoGP bike for the first time, Hayden is chomping at the bit to get the opportunity, though top Emmett and Plater in race two. Championship leader Steve Hislop posted fifth- and sixth-piace finishes. Still, he leads Emmett by 37 points. Suzuki took all three podium finishes in the 66th Bol d'Or at Magny Cours on September 15, with the Suzuki Castrol Team of Jean·Michel Bayle, Nico· las Daussage and Sebastien Gim· bert taking the win. The French trio ended the 24-hour race three laps ahead of the second Suzuki Castrol Team of Frenchmen Christian Lavielle and Phillip Dobe and Brit Brian Morrison. Frenchman Olivier Four won the second GSX-R Cup race and took the overall Suzuki GSX-R World Cup title for himself and France at Magny Cours in France, on September 15. Four, 25, who won the first race the day before by a convincing margin, only took the lead with on the second and final lap when leader Giuseppe Fiorillo ran into problems. Fiorillo ended up second overall, with New Yorker Jason DiSalvo finishing third overall by virtue of his two fourth-place finishes. It should come as no surprise that The Goshen Iron Horsemen Motorcycle Club hosted round 10 of the AMA National Championship Hillclimb Series, with defending 800cc National Champion Walter "Tiger" Strank Jr. CYam) putting together a perfect ride on his last pass to outrun 2002 points leader Dave Watson (Hon) by .022 of a second to eam the class victory. Strank's win, his fourth in a row. puts him just seven points behind Watson with two rounds remaining. Phil Libhart (H-Dl finished third in the Middlebury. Indiana. round. In 540cc action, Watson (Hon) took the win over Strank (Yam) and Rodney Williams (BSA). o J o ~ o o Steve Plater (Yam) and Michael Rutter (Duc) split race wins at Mallory 8 o Park on September 15, round 12 of the British Superbike Series. Plater topped Sean Emmett (Duc) and Rutter to win race one, with Rutter coming back to 2 SEPTEMBER 25; 2002' cue James Stewart Jr. is the winner of the 2002 AMA Motocross/Supercross Rookie of the Year award, according to the AMA. Stewart. 16. from Haines City, Florida, recently completed the most impressive season ever from a motocross rookie by dominating the AMA/Chevy Trucks 125cc U.S. Motocross Championship. He also finished second in the AMA/Western Regional 125cc Supercross Series earlier thiS season and was the winner of the prestigious Dave Coombs Sr. EastlWest Supercross Shootout in Las Vegas in May. Stewart rode for Team Chevy Trucks Kawasaki. The Motocross/Supercross Rookie of the Year award is based on combined Supercross and Motocross points, and must be the rider's first full year with an AMA professional motocross license. "It was a great season," said Stewart, who became the youngest AMA Motocross Champion In n • _ s • • he doesn't have a set timeframe yet. "I've got no idea yet," Hayden said. "Hopefully, the end of November or the beginning of December. I plan on going to watch the last GP or two to get a feel for what is going on there.' Mr. Suguru Kanazawa, President of HRC (Honda Racing Corporation), confirmed that his company had signed Hayden; "We are happy Nicky is joining Road Racing Grand Prix next year,' Kanaza· lOla said in a Honda release. "Even if we don't know yet which team he 101m cooperate with, as we announced our 2003 strategy some weeks ago in Bmo. As Honda is a global player, we are proud to say that we are going to race in the World Championship-leading class, as MotoGP is, with European, U.S. and Japanese riders - the three leading motorcycle markets in the world.· If the Hayden signing wasn't enough, Honda also announced that it had replaced the AMA Superbike Champion with a fonner AMA Superbike Champion • Ben Bostrom. Bostrom will take Hayden's place on the AMA Superblke team, riding a Honda RCS] alongside Miguel DuHamel and Kurtis Roberts. Bostrom, who currently rides an L&M Ducati in the World Super. bike Serles, wUl have his last ride for Ducati on September 29 in the final World Superbike round in !Inola, Jtaly. the history of the series. "It felt so good to win the championship - I hope it's the first of many. I want to come back next year and win a 125cc supercross title and try to defend my 125cc National Motocross Championship." Stewart made his pro debut in the AMA 125cc Western Regional Supercross Series in Anaheim, California, in January. He went on to win three rounds in that series. the most of any rider, but inconsistency cost him the title. He finished off the supercross season on a positive note however, taking on the cream of the crop of 125cc s upercross racers in the EastlWest Shootout in Las Vegas and dominating the race. Stewart became the first true rookie to win his first AMA Motocross when he took victory in the 125cc opener at Glen Helen Raceway in San Bernardino, California. on May 12. Glen Helen would be the beginning of the best season any rider has ever had in AMA 125 motocross. Stewart went on to win 10 of the 12 rounds en route to the championship. His 10 wins set a new record for most victories in a singie season in AMA 125cc motocross. In just one season of racing, Stewart has already moved into the top-10 on the alltime AMA 125cc motocross wins list. He's ranked ninth, with Mike Kiedrowski and Ron Lechien - all with 1O-career victories. Stewart joins an impressive list of past AMA Rookie of the Year winners that includes champions such as Travis Pastrana, Ricky Carmichael and Jeff Stanton. Stewart will be presented his Rookie of the Year award at the November 23, 2002 AMA Pro Racing Awards Banquet at the Venetian Resort Hotel Las Vegas. Eric Bostrom has signed a contract with Kawasaki, according to a release issued by his manager. "I'm happy that Kawasaki was very interested in keeping me on a green bike," Bostrom said in the release. "I'm comfortable here, have had good results with them, my crew is really good, and there are some exciting Kawasaki machines coming in the near future." Bostrom's deal is for two years with Kawasaki and he will continue to race the AMA Series, though it is still unclear what classes he will compete in. In addition. Bostrom retains a strong connection to the Kawasaki MotoGP project, as he will be testing the machine for Kawasaki before the year is out and again next season. This was a final component that convinced Bostrom to stay with Kawasaki. according to the release. "With thiS deal, I can't lose," Bostrom said. "' have a great opportunity with the Kawasaki MotoGP team in the near future, plus I can race in a championship here in the States until then. It's a championship that I'd like to see grow as it has in the past. And my brother [Ben Bostrom has signed for American Honda to race in the AMA Superbike Series in 2003] will be home next year, too. I'd like nothing better than to race against Ben, as he's a fun guy to race against. And the MotoGP option is something I really want. as well, so it's an ideal situation. i can't lose either way, and my goals remain the same: to win championships. Here at home, always. And then to race MotoGP for Kawasaki soon. And if we don't end up racing the MotoGP full time next year, maybe that will be a little bit better, actually. We can get a little bit of development out of the way and jump on it when it's a bit more sorted out. I'm obViously excited to be a part of the development. though, and I'm looking forward to riding a bike with all that horsepower. Hopefully it won't spoil me. as the Superbike might feel a bit soft after that!" Kawasaki has yet to name its MotoGP riders for 2003. According to sources, there is still a chance Bostrom could get that ride. If so, he would be released from his American-based contract. Dave Hamel, the promoter of the World Off· Road Championship Series (WORCS), has announced that the WaRCS series will expand to a 13round national off-road series for 2003. Currently, the WaRCS series is six rounds and all of the races are held on the west coast. but for '03, the WaRCS series will be broken down to six rounds in the west and six rounds in the east,

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