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|12-20-2008, 12:48 PM||#1|
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Hayden Signs Two-Year Contract Extension With American Suzuki
Tommy Hayden Signs Two-Year Contract Extension With American Suzuki Motor Corporation, Tests 2009 GSX-R1000 At Auto Club Speedway
Roadracing World Publishing, Inc.
Two-time AMA Supersport Champion Tommy Hayden has signed a two-year contract extension with American Suzuki Motor Corporation (ASMC) that will see the oldest of the three Hayden brothers race with the ASMC-sponsored Yoshimura Suzuki team through the 2010 season.
Hayden tested a 2009 model Suzuki GSX-R1000 Thursday, December 18 on the infield road course at Auto Club Speedway, in Fontana, California, but the test was not necessarily a precursor for Yoshimura Suzuki going racing next season.
“It was for Don,” said Hayden, referring to Don Sakakura, Yoshimura Suzuki Team Manager. “He just wanted to test some pipes and stuff he’s trying to get ready to sell [through Yoshimura R&D of America]. Usually, we’ve already done that at Daytona [tire test] so they can get some stuff in production for the beginning of the year. So unfortunately it wasn’t a racebike test.”
Hayden said the ambient temperature was 39° F when the test started, and the track was very dirty.
“I could barely drag my knee. There were two corners that had mud on them,” said Hayden. “It was alright. I just wanted to ride. I hadn’t ridden in two months. I was hoping we could get a day so I could go out and play around, do some laps and get back in the swing of things. It was a little bit of a waste [for me], but Don got what he needed so he was happy.”
Asked if he knew Yoshimura Suzuki’s plans for the 2009 season, Hayden said, “No, next week. But I’ve been hearing that since July. Every week it’s been, ‘Probably next week we’ll get it figured out. Next week we’ll get it figured out.’ Those weeks come and go and nothing changes. So I’m not sure.”
As for his impression of the Suzuki's newest GSX-R1000, Hayden said, "It seemed alright. It’s hard to tell just riding a streetbike around. I had never ridden a regular GSX-R1000 in streetbike form. I had only ridden a Superbike. So it’s hard to say, but there was nothing I hated about it. Everything worked well. It ran well. It’s definitely a little smaller. I think that’s gonna be a little bit beneficial for me, if I get to race it."
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