AMA Superbike: Mat Mladin blasts proposed 2009 rules

Published: 20 May 2008

Six-time AMA Superbike Champion Mat Mladin used the podium at Infineon Raceway as a pulpit to blast the proposed 2009 rules package for the AMA Superbike Championship.

Just after getting beaten by team-mate Ben Spies, for the third race in a row, this time by over six seconds, and after accepting the second place trophy, Mladin addressed the crowd. 

“If you guys don’t speak up, you’re going to be watching a bunch of piece of crap motorcycles ridden by second rate riders,” he said, later adding,

“Hopefully we’ll be back next year riding the biggest fastest bikes in America.”

The Daytona Motorsports Group is expected to announce the technical regulations for the “Literbike” class quite soon.

The choice is between a set of Superbike rules agreed upon by the manufacturers prior to DMG’s takeover or more restrictive Superstock rules recently floated by Yamaha’s race boss.

Kawasaki and Yamaha are in favor of the Superstock rules, while Honda and Suzuki are for the Superbike rules.

Mladin continued to vent in the post-race press conference.

“Today and yesterday I've heard that much stuff over the microphone out there of the propaganda these people are trying to fill all of the fans with,” he said, referencing the track PA announcer.

“It's almost made me throw up. I've got a couple things to say about it. Oh, by the way, the race was okay. We got second.”

Mladin said: “The stuff that's been going on this weekend at the racetrack is sad for motorcycle racing. I'm not sure if they're handing out pills at the gate to try and numb the fans up, but these motorcycle fans are a lot smarter than obviously what the new promoters think. They know what they're watching out there.

“They know that the best riders are on the racetrack, and they know that the manufacturers are putting the best motorcycles on the racetrack out there.

“I think everybody in Superbike would agree that what goes around comes around, and that nothing's forever. And when you stick to something long enough, you're going to succeed.

“That goes for every manufacturer in the class. I think everybody's forgetting that Suzuki hasn't dominated the class forever, and realistically, for the last two to three years, really, has been the only time that Suzuki has dominated Superbike racing in this country.

“I won my first championship winning one race in 1999. My second championship, winning four races, and I think my third championship winning maybe four races also.

“If that's called domination, then I'm not sure. I do recall, however, Ducati and Honda winning a lot more races than that.”

“I've had to listen to - and everybody's had to listen to, World Superbike - apparently World Superbike's competitive because there's controlled tyres and all the bikes are the same.

“Well, our bikes here in the States are all not that far off World Superbike, and everybody in America that matters is on exactly the same race tyres. So realistically, we're on controlled tyres, and realistically, we're all on the same motorbike, even though they're different manufacturers.

“So as I said before, you stick to something long enough, you will succeed. It's only a matter of time, and nothing's forever, and anybody that doesn't believe that obviously came down in the last shower.

“I just hope that the manufacturers stick together on this and allow the American racing fans to continue to see the best races on the best motorbikes in this country racing, and not some of the stuff that's been put forward.”

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  • Mat Mladin asked the Infineon crowd to 'speak up' against the proposed 2009 AMA Superbike rules