Hayden wins Supersport at Laguna Seca
July 23, 2007
Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Roger Hayden earned the AMA Supersport victory on the final turn of the last lap at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, Calif.
Hayden, who is also riding the MotoGP race this weekend as a wildcard for Kawasaki, started the weekend on top when he set a new track record and captured the pole position. During the race, Hayden got a great start and took the lead after three laps. He was passed near the end of the race, but stayed close enough to make his move on the final turn for the win.
“It was a great race,” said Hayden. “It was a fight to the finish but I knew that after the points’ leader went down, I wanted to get the maximum amount of points. This season my goal has been to win the supersport championship. I told my crew that I wasn’t going to take my focus away from it because I was riding the MotoGP.”
With this win, Roger moves into the lead for the championship and opened up a 13-point cushion ahead of teammate Jamie Hacking.
Attack Kawasaki’s Steve Rapp also had a notable race aboard the Kawasaki ZX™-6R. His start kept him close with the front-runners and he was able to take advantage of a rider crashing out, finishing in third and obtaining his second AMA Supersport podium of the year.
“I finally got a great start,” said Rapp. “I just tried to stay close and when the riders in front of me made mistakes, I would move up. It feels good to get this podium after crashing in practice earlier today.”
Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Hacking had some trouble with his front tire but rode a great pace to finish just off the podium in fourth.
“I was bummed because I was very confident this weekend, especially after breaking the track record in practice,” said Hacking. “After I realized I had a bad front tire, I just tried to put my head down and ride a pace I was comfortable with. But then, I lost the front-end so big on the second to last lap that I thought I was going to end up in Salinas. I was definitely happy too come across the finish and get some valuable points.”
After crashing during the second round at Barber Motorsports Park, Hacking has come back with two wins and two additional podium finishes, helping him move up to second in the championship chase.
Attack Kawasaki’s Ben Attard got stuck mid-pack behind a group of riders but was able to fight his way up to a ninth-place finish.
Hacking will be riding the AMA Superbike race on Sunday, while teammate Roger Hayden will compete in his first-ever MotoGP race prior to AMA Superbike.