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AMA: Big Kahuna at Road Atlanta; Superbike Championships

1 June 2000


                        BIG KAHUNA AT ROAD ATLANTA

     PICKERINGTON, Ohio -- The timing couldn't be better for fans attending

the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) Chevy Trucks U.S. Superbike

Championship presented by Parts Unlimited at  the "Big Kahuna" races at

Road Atlanta in Braselton, Ga., June 2-4. The stars have aligned to make

this a don't-miss race to be recounted for years.

     The Big Kahuna races at road Atlanta will kick-off the first of three

2000 season Chevy Trucks U.S. Superbike doubleheader rounds. Series sponsor

Chevy Trucks has added to the race weekend by upping the stakes at the Big

Kahuna, but more on that later.

     The big news in the Chevy Trucks U.S. Superbike Championship is the

return of 1987-1989 AMA 250 Grand Prix Champion, 1990 FIM World 250 Grand

Prix and 1997 World Superbike Champion John Kocinski. Kocinski will return

to race in the U.S. for the first time since 1989, riding with the Vance &

Hines Ducati team.

     Kocinski will take on a field of rivals including Kawasaki's Doug

Chandler and Suzuki's Mat Mladin -- his former teammates on the 1993 Cagiva

World 500cc Grand Prix team. His entrance into the AMA Chevy Trucks U.S.

Superbike Championship sets up a wide-open pair of races for the Big Kahuna


     In 1998, the "Big Kahuna" race at Road Atlanta was the first-ever AMA

Superbike doubleheader. The popularity of the format -- including two

back-to-back Superbike races Saturday and Sunday -- spurred other tracks,

including Road America and Mid-Ohio, to adopt the doubleheader format in


     Now series sponsor Chevy Trucks has added more excitement to the

doubleheader races by creating the "Like a Rock Challenge," which rewards

the rider who wins the most races or earns the most points among the three

2000 season doubleheaders with a loaded Chevy Silverado pickup.

     While Kocinski is a possible winner of the Chevy Silverado, another

racer has already staked his claim to the prize.

     "Nicky wants that truck," Earl Hayden was overheard to say while

admiring a Chevy Silverado on display at the races. Earl is the patriarch

of the racing Hayden family, which includes: 19-year old Nicky, riding with

the Honda factory team; 22-year old Tommy, racing with the factory Yamaha

Superbike team; and 16-year old Team Chaparral Suzuki rider Roger Lee.

     Earl is not the only one who considers son Nicky a contender in the

Like a Rock Challenge.

     Nicky won the highly competitive AMA Pro Honda Oils 600 SuperSport

Championship in 1999, and he took second-place at the Daytona 200 Superbike

race earlier this season, edged out by a mere 11 thousandths of a second by

Australian Mat Mladin and the Yoshimura Suzuki team.

     While Kocinski's arrival has changed the landscape, Hayden and other

top riders still see a window of opportunity, opened by the absence of two

contenders from Big Kahuna races past. Front-runners Anthony Gobert and Ben

Bostrom will be missing this year.

     The Australian Gobert won one of the 1998 Big Kahuna races and both

1999 races on a Vance & Hines Ducati, but he now competes in the World

Superbike Championship riding a Bimota. Californian Ben Bostrom took

third-place at both 1998 races with Vance & Hines, and second-place at both

1999 races. He now rides with Ducati in the World Superbike Championship.

     Canadian Miguel Duhamel -- who won 1998 Big Kahuna race one and took

second-place in race two -- will be looking to reclaim his place on the

podium this year. Duhamel suffered a crash during the Big Kahuna last year,

which put him out of contention. But he is now fit and competing aboard the

potent new Honda RC51 Superbike this year.

     Factory Yamaha pilot Jamie Hacking, of Boiling Springs, S.C., took

third-place in Big Kahuna race one last year. Hacking knows the winding

2.52-mile Road Atlanta course and considers it his home track, having

developed his skills as an amateur racer there.

     Mat Mladin, the reigning AMA Chevy Trucks U.S. Superbike Champ, took

third-place in Big Kahuna race two in 1999, followed by his current Suzuki

teammate, Aaron Yates, of Milledgeville, Ga. Mladin is looking to continue

the championship drive he started with his Daytona win, and hometown

favorite Yates is sure to be looking to be in the limelight this year,

having just missed the Big Kahuna podium last year.

     Other Georgia natives competing in the Big Kahuna races include 1993

World Superbike Champion Scott Russell, of Conyers, riding for the factory

Harley-Davidson team, and Tripp Nobles, of Macon, riding with Bell County


     Three-time Chevy Trucks U.S. Superbike Champion Champ Doug Chandler

and teammate Eric Bostrom are also looking to make a statement at the Big

Kahuna. The factory Kawasaki teammates, both from northern California, are

confident their team has what it takes to lead the field. Earlier this

year, Chandler showed the team's ability to go the distance, taking third

place at the Daytona 200.

      The Big Kahuna round at Road Atlanta is known for its great camping

and spectator amenities. Featured activities include a vendor mall, pee-wee

motorcycle demo rides for the kids, and musical entertainment by The New


     While there, be sure to stop by the Chevy Trucks tent for rider

autograph sessions, free decals and other giveaway items. And keep your

eyes open for the Chevy Trucks fan team, driving on the track between races

in a Chevy Silverado pickup. Fans who display their enthusiasm for

Superbikes (and Chevy Trucks) are rewarded with official Chevy Truck


     For tickets to the Parts Unlimited Big Kahuna presented by Toyota

Trucks round of the AMA Chevy Trucks U.S. Superbike Championship, call

(770) 967-6143.

     For immediate post-race results, rider information, AMA Pro Racing

notes and news, check

                       PRESENTED BY PARTS UNLIMITED
Pos. Pts. No.  Rider name, hometown             Machine
1    36   1    MATHEW MLADIN, AUSTRALIA,        SUZ
2    33   69   NICKY HAYDEN, OWENSBORO, KY      HON
3    29   10   DOUG CHANDLER, SALINAS, CA       KAW
6    25   82   STEVE RAPP, LAFAYETTE, CA        DUC
7    24   22   TOMMY HAYDEN, OWENSBORO, KY      YAM
9    22   21   PASCAL PICOTTE, CANADA, QU       HD
10   21   72   LARRY PEGRAM, BALTIMORE, OH      DUC