AMA: MBNA Superbike Tour Presented By Parts Unlimited at Sears Point Raceway
23 April 1999PICKERINGTON, Ohio -- Suzuki AMA Superbike ace Mat Mladin will be working hard to fend off hard-charging Ducati pilot Ben Bostrom as the American Motorcyclist Associastion MBNA Superbike Tour presented by Parts Unlimited arrives this weekend (April 23-25) at Sears Point Raceway for the Progressive Insurance AMA Superbike Challenge.
Australian Mladin and the Yoshimura Suzuki team hold the lead of the MBNA Superbike Series presented by Parts Unlimited with 92 season points. But Vance & Hines Ducati rider and 1998 MBNA Superbike Champion Ben Bostrom, of Granada Hills, Calif., lurks only 3 points back in the standings. Mladin finished third last year at Sears Point and Bostrom finished right behind him in fourth, setting up another tight race this weekend.
Miguel Duhamel, the 1999 Daytona 200 winner, experienced a disappointing crash and 27th-place finish at the last MBNA Superbike race, held April 18 at Willow Springs Raceway in Rosamond, Calif. But Duhamel remains a contender at Sears Point, having won three of the last four races there: in 1998, 1997 and 1995. Now ranked in series sixth-place with 64 points, Duhamel and the American Honda team will be hungry for a win to fuel a drive toward the top of the standings.
Although Vance & Hines Ducati rider Anthony Gobert won the Phoenix round of the series, tire worries at the Daytona season-opener and electrical problems at the Willow Springs round have left him lagging in series ninth-place. Gobert showed he could run with the leaders at last years Sears Point race, but ended up finishing 30th due to mechanical problems. Like Duhamel, Gobert needs a win at Sears Point to put him back in contention for the championship.
Local favorite Doug Chandler and his Muzzy Kawasaki team could also use a boost at Sears Point. Hounded by race setup problems with his bike, the Salinas, Calif., resident is currently ranked in series eighth-place. He finished in second-place at the 1998 Sears Point race.
The five other series of the MBNA Superbike Tour presented by Parts Unlimited will complete the nonstop action at the Progressive Insurance AMA Superbike Challenge at Sears Point Raceway. Riders in the Lockhart Phillips USA 750 SuperSport Series, the Pro Honda Oils 600 SuperSport Series, the Progressive Insurance Pro Thunder Series, the Sunoco Race Fuels Formula Xtreme Series and Mazda Trucks 250 Grand Prix Series will all be battling for points and prize money.
For ticket and race information for Progressive Insurance AMA Superbike Challenge at Sears Point Raceway, call (800) 870-7223.
The MBNA Superbike Series presented by Parts Unlimited will be broadcast live on Speedvision, Sun., April 25 at 5 p.m. eastern time. Additional tape-delay broadcasts can be seen on Fox Sports Net. All broadcast times are listed in the Racing on TV section of the Pro Racing pages at AMADirectlink, the official webside of the AMA.
For immediate post-race results, rider information, AMA Pro Racing notes and news, check the Pro Racing pages of AMADirectlink, at http://www.ama-cycle.org.
1999 AMA MBNA SUPERBIKE SERIES BY PARTS UNLIMITED POINT STANDINGS
POS. PTS. NO. NAME, HOMETOWN MACH.
1 92 66 MATHEW MLADIN, CHINO, CA SUZ
2 89 1 BEN D BOSTROM, GRANADA HILLS, CA DUC
3 82 72 LARRY PEGRAM, BALTIMORE, OH DUC
4 75 97 RICHARD H OLIVER, FRESNO, CA YAM
5 75 43 JASON R PRIDMORE, VENTURA, CA SUZ
6 64 17 MIGUEL DUHAMEL, SARASOTA, FL HON
7 63 23 MATTHEW WAIT, LODI, CA DUC
8 61 10 DOUG CHANDLER, SALINAS, CA KAW
9 59 95 ANTHONY GOBERT, , AUSTRALIA DUC
10 59 20 AARON W YATES, MILLEDGEVILLE, GA KAW