Hayes, Beaubier Splits Wins, Leave Mazda Raceway Tied


Monster Energy/Graves Motorsports Yamaha's Josh Hayes and Cameron Beaubier drove out of Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on Sunday night all even in the 2015 MotoAmerica AMA/FIM North America Superbike Championship, the pair having taken a win apiece in the two races on a day marred by tragedy.

Hayes won the first of the two races on Sunday morning, a race declared wet but run in mostly dry conditions with both Hayes and his junior teammate Beaubier making the right choice in running slick tires on their R1s. Hayes ended up winning the race with almost 19 seconds in hand with Beaubier finishing second, well clear of third-placed Roger Hayden on the Yoshimura Suzuki. Hayden's teammate Jake Lewis finished the race in fourth.

Race two went to Beaubier with a three-way battle between the two Yamaha men and Hayden going to the very end of the race. At the finish line it was Beaubier beating Hayden by just .084 of a second with Hayes a shadow third - just .398 of a second behind. Fourth place overall and first in the Superstock 1000 class went to Roadrace Factory's Jake Gagne over HSBK Aprilia's Sheridan Morais. Fourth in the Superbike race and eighth overall went to Lewis on the second Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000.

Race two (the final race of the day after two World Superbike races, the first MotoAmerica Superbike race and MotoAmerica Supersport), however, was marred by a chain-reaction, multi-bike incident on the first lap that resulted in the death of Spanish racers Bernat Martinez, 35, and Dani Rivas, 27. The incident occurred just seconds after the start of the race and the red flag came out immediately to stop the race. The race was later restarted and ran for the scheduled 18 laps. For more information on the incident, Click Here

After seven of nine rounds (14 races), the Yamaha men are tied on points with 286 apiece. The win early in the day was the eighth on the season for Hayes with Beaubier's victory in the afternoon his sixth of the year. Hayden, who came into the Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca round trailing his teammate Lewis, shot past the class rookie and into third in the series standings. Hayden now has 205 points to Lewis' 197.

Gagne continues to lead the Superstock 1000 point standings over TOBC Racing's Taylor Knapp, but the gap is now 20 - 244-224. Knapp finished the day with a pair of thirds with Gagne sixth in race one and victorious in race two. Race one was won by Brit Mark Heckles, the first of the season for the Yamaha-mounted series rookie who is a solid third in the series standings. Morais was second in race two after struggling with a poor tire choice in race one.

"Yeah, it was a hard day," Hayes said at the end of race two. "It was a long day. There were such different halves of the day. This morning was so much different. This morning experience really paid off, being here for as long as I have paid off.

"I think that if I'd been lucky enough for that first start to go that would have worked more in my favor than the second start. I felt like I had gotten up to speed pretty quick. I was ready to go and just doing a race start kind of gets everybody up to speed. So I think these guys were a little better prepared on the second go around. But I rode the best race I could. I got to the front. I was going to fight for that position as long as I could. And as soon as Roger (Hayden) came by I wanted to go right back at him.

"I just didn't have the tools that I needed to go after him, so as the race was wearing on I knew Cam (Beaubier) was right behind me. I didn't know really where I was doing good against him and where I wasn't or what was going on. But when he finally made the move again I wanted to go right back at him, but I didn't have what I needed to do it.

"I got to be honest, with five laps to go, just seeing how everything was playing out, how I was feeling and knowing what my bike was like, I figured Cam's was probably very similar to mine. My money was on Roger. I thought he had it, but turns out this old turd's a pretty good racer and came up with some good ones there on the last couple laps."

Beaubier, who was beaten handily by Hayes in race one, was happy to be back on top in race two.

"I'm glad I redeemed myself after race one," the 22-year-old said. "Pretty much got schooled by Josh out there. It wasn't too fun. Went back and I just struggled a little bit right at the beginning. Half wet, half dry conditions, that was tough on me. Second race, I knew I had to hang it out.

"At the beginning I was struggling quite a bit, just latching onto those guys. I was making mistakes running wide here and there and was kind of struggling with drive grip a little bit. Towards the end it seemed like maybe their tire dropped a little bit and mine stayed the same throughout the race. So I was able to make a last-lap push. It was tough. It's so hard to pass here."

The man of the moment in MotoAmerica racing is Supersport star JD Beach. The Yamalube/Y.E.S./Graves Motorsports Yamaha rider reeled off his sixth straight and eighth win of the season on Sunday, the man who now calls Owensboro, Kentucky home beating Wheels In Motion/ Meen Motorsports' Josh Herrin by a tick over five seconds. Herrin was in turn almost two seconds ahead of M4 Suzuki/'s David Anthony, the Australian taking advantage of Bobby Fong's crash with barely over a lap remaining to take third. Fong was able to remount to finish sixth, behind Beach's teammate Garrett Gerloff and Roadrace Factory's Tomas Puerta.

Beach now leads Herrin by 49 points with two rounds (three races) remaining in the series, 265-216. Gerloff is third with 199 points.

"It feels amazing (to win six in a row) and especially to do it against these guys that are just riding so fast," Beach said. "Guys like Herrin that I've actually looked up to before I started racing in the AMA series. Really the only thing I can say, it's really just luck. We're all great riders and I've just been having things click this year for me."

1. Josh Hayes (Yamaha);
2. Cameron Beaubier (Yamaha);
3. Roger Hayden (Suzuki);
4. Jake Lewis (Suzuki);
5. Chris Ulrich (Suzuki);
6. Bernat Martinez (Yamaha);
7. Kevin Pinkstaff (Kawasaki);
8. Elena Myers (Suzuki);
9. Chris Fillmore (KTM).

1. Cameron Baubier (Yamaha);
2. Roger Hayden (Suzuki);
3. Josh Hayes (Yamaha);
4. Jake Lewis (Suzuki);
5. Chris Ulrich (Suzuki);
6. Elena Myers (Suzuki).

1. Mark Heckles (Yamaha);
2. Steve Rapp (BMW);
3. Taylor Knapp (Yamaha);
4. Shane Narbonne (Yamaha);
5. Cory Call (BMW);
6. Jake Gagne (Yamaha);
7. Tyler O'Hara (Yamaha);
8. Josh Day (Yamaha);
9. Sheridan Morais (Aprilia);
10. Oleg Pianykh (Yamaha).

1. Jake Gagne (Yamaha);
2. Sheridan Morais (Aprilia);
3. Taylor Knapp (Yamaha);
4. Josh Day (Yamaha);
5. Tyler O'Hara (Yamaha);
6. Mark Heckles (Yamaha);
7. Steve Rapp (BMW);
8. Cory Call (BMW);
9. Sebastiao Ferreira (Yamaha);
10. Barrett Long (Yamaha).

1. JD Beach (Yamaha);
2. Josh Herrin (Yamaha);
3. David Anthony (Suzuki);
4. Garrett Gerloff (Yamaha);
5. Tomas Puerta (Yamaha).
6. Bobby Fong (Triumph);
7. Kyle Wyman (Yamaha);
8. Corey Alexander (Yamaha);
9. Hayden Gillim (MV Agusta);
10. Ben Young (Yamaha).

Top Image: Cameron Beaubier (6) beat Roger Hayden (95) and Josh Hayes (1) to the line in race two of MotoAmerica Superbike action at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca on Sunday.

Credit: Brian J. Nelson.

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