The Yoshimura Suzuki team has just announced its riders for the 2012 AMA Superbike season. The team lost a championship contender when they decided not to resign Tommy Hayden, but with Blake Young and Chris Clark riding two Suzuki GSX-R1000s, the team should be in good shape in 2012.
Blake Young came within a second of the 2011 AMA Superbike championship. The young rider had the lead going into the final round but he couldn't hold off a determined Josh Hayes. Young has another year of experience under his belt and will be battling for the championship again in 2012.
"I'm really excited for 2012," said Young. "I know I've got the best bike in the paddock with the Yoshimura Suzuki GSX-R1000. It's been like riding a real rocketship for me and I learned a lot about what it takes to win a championship this year. We came up just a little short and I don't want to be in that position in 2012. We've got a great crew - the best bike - and a smarter rider; and I just want to go out and win races and bring home that championship for the team. I'm gonna do everything I can to make sure that happens."
In the other Yoshimura Suzuki garage will be Las Vegas native Chris Clark. Clark turned pro in 2009 after winning the AMA Horizon Award, and showed a lot of potential during the 2011 season. Clark will have some big shoes to fill in Hayden' absence, but the 20-year-old rider is up to the challenge.
"I'm really happy," said Clark. "We just had our first real test in Daytona and the GSX-R is an amazing machine. I'm really looking forward to working with the team and I know I can learn a lot from them. They always have very solid results and they have an incredible amount of experience winning championships. I'm really excited to be with Yoshimura Suzuki for 2012."
Yoshimura Racing President Don Sakakura said:
"We're really looking forward to this next season. Blake was very close to pulling off the championship last year and I know he learned and matured a lot during that season. He'll be coming into Daytona ready to fight for the 2012 title. Chris Clark is a welcome addition to our team. He had a solid test in Daytona and I know he'll represent Suzuki and Yoshimura well."
The 2012 AMA Superbike championship begins in Daytona, Florida, on March 15th.