Dunlop Dominates DaytonaMonday, March 10, 2008 | 12:16 PM
Buffalo, NY: Road race. Supercross. Dirt track. At the multi-venue racing extravaganza known as Daytona Bike Week 2008, Dunlop earned more race wins and podium positions than all other tire manufacturers combined. Dunlop's massive degree of success mirrored the vast expanses of Daytona International Speedway‹a fitting and historic match that spans decades of Dunlop domination at Daytona.
At the Speedway, Dunlop riders not only won the Superbike race and swept the podium, they also filled out the top eight positions. Rockstar Makita Suzuki's Mat Mladin took the victory in grand style to tally his 64th national win. Defending Superbike champion Ben Spies followed teammate Mladin to the stripe, while Graves Yamaha's Jason DiSalvo rounded out the top three, notching his first-ever Superbike podium.
The Supersport contest witnessed another Dunlop podium sweep for a dominating debut of the all-new D211GP DOT racing tire‹a tire that's available to the racing public. The ever-popular Ben Bostrom took his first win at Daytona, as he fought off the dogged finish-line charge of his Graves Yamaha teammate, teenager Josh Herrin. Monster Kawasaki rider Roger Hayden put in a heroic ride with a fractured wrist to finish third and fill out the podium.
In the Superstock class, Aaron Yates earned a decisive victory for Jordan Suzuki and Dunlop, and his teammate Geoff May followed close behind for a third-place finish. The Formula Xtreme Daytona 200 saw team Honda's Neil Hodgson win the pole and the accompanying Daytona Rolex, and he also posted the fastest lap of the race, a 1:39:604. Erion Honda Racing¹s Josh Hayes lead 53 laps of the Daytona 200 to win by a comfortable margin but was later disqualified for a claimed technical infraction; final results are pending appeal.
Not far away at Daytona Municipal Stadium, dirt-track fans witnessed an historic event when Jake Johnson became first rider in history to sweep the Daytona double. The first night of the AMA Grand National Singles Championship races saw Johnson take the victory over fellow Dunlop riders Ken Coolbeth and Glen Schnabel. The following evening, Johnson won again, Schnabel moved up to second place, and Bryan Smith rounded out the all-Dunlop podium.
Dunlop's overwhelming Daytona success carried over to the evening Supercross races as well. In the most brutal conditions ever encountered in a Supercross event, Torco Racing Fuels Honda rider Kevin Windham gutted out his second win of the season on a muddy, flooded racetrack in a driving rainstorm. Fellow Honda rider Davi Millsaps followed Windham to the checkers in the runner-up position aboard his Dunlop-equipped Honda Red Bull Racing CRF450R.
Meanwhile, in the Supercross Lites event, Windham's 17-year-old rookie teammate Trey Canard proved his speed and determination by running away to victory once again. Conquering the same extreme track and weather conditions as Windham, Canard scored his third consecutive Lites East win aboard his Torco Racing Fuels Honda CRF250R. How effective has the Dunlop/Honda combination been for young Canard? Consider this: so far he has led every lap except one of every main event in his professional Supercross career.
Dunlop congratulates all these great riders on their Daytona accomplishments and looks forward to more success throughout the 2008 racing season.
About Dunlop Tires
Dunlop Tires is the largest supplier of original equipment and replacement motorcycle tires in the U.S. and the only manufacturer of motorcycle tires in North America. With North American operations headquartered in Buffalo, NY, Dunlop has been making and selling high-quality tires in the U.S. since 1923. For more information, visit www.dunlopmotorcycle.com.