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AMA Sportbike: 2012 Daytona 200 Results
The 2012 Daytona 200 delivered another fairy-tale finish with underdog privateer Joey Pascarella and the Project 1 Atlanta team fending off a pack of three other racers to win by a slim 0.048 second margin.
Competing in just his first Daytona 200, 19-year-old Pascarella from Victorville, Calif., held the lead for 41 out of 57 laps to finish first ahead of a last year’s winner Jason DiSalvo while Cameron Beaubier squeezed by 2010 Daytona Sportbike Champion Martin Cardenas in a photo-finish to take third.
For the Project 1 Atlanta team, the win marked a dramatic turnaround from a let down in 2011. Despite finishing third in the 2011 Daytona 200 with rider Jake Zemke taking the pole, the team was unable to secure funding to continue the rest of the season. The team came back this year with little funding – Pascarella’s YZF-R6 doesn’t even have a Yamaha logo on it – with its main goal to raise awareness for the March of Dimes children’s charity.
The team couldn’t have done a better job. The team ran with most of the same crew and a mostly unchanged R6 from last year’s race. Pascarella also rode the R6 for the first time at Daytona, not having a chance to test or practice on it prior to the arriving in Florida.
“I knew I could do it and I had faith in myself,” says Pascarella. “I ran my own race. I thought if I led on the last lap and someone passed me, so be it. I felt most comfortable in the lead. Everyone was there the whole race. It ended up working out. I got a draft on a lapper and I was able to bring it home with a win. I don’t know what we’re doing for the rest of the season, but hopefully the team and I can keep going.”
DiSalvo was also able to take advantage of drafting to mount a dramatic comeback to almost win the race. Riding for Team Latus Motors on a Gary Nixon-tribute Triumph Daytona 675, DiSalvo was among the leaders for the first quarter of the race but was forced to pit early on Lap 14 after DiSalvo noticed a problem. The team replaced the rear tire and sent him back out. DiSalvo rejoined the race still on the lead lap but lost significant ground on the leaders.
He made up for it by stretching his run before his next pit stop and setting down fast lap times, three times ducking into the 1:49s including the overall fastest lap time of 1:49.607 on Lap 20. On the final stretch, DiSalvo used the draft to pass Beaubier and made a run for Pascarella before running out of time.
“I thought I had an issue with the motorcycle and I backed off the pace considerably and we lost a good bit of time. We went through our pit stop and got back out there and everything looked okay and we kept going,” says DiSalvo. “Once I thoroughly chastised myself for making a silly move like that – you ride it until it stops, you don’t think you hear a noise and pull in – I just rode as hard as I could every lap. Every lap of that race was ten tenths, as hard as I could go. It ended up working out right that we were right there in the end. Through all the laps, and all the sliding around and slicing through lapped riders, it was just in the back of my mind that I was riding for Gary (Nixon) and riding for his memory, and for my crew and all the hard work they put in.”
2012 Daytona 200 Results:
1. Joey Pascarella (Yamaha YZF-R6), 57 laps
2. Jason DiSalvo (Triumph Daytona 675R), -0.048 second
3. Cameron Beaubier (Yamaha YZF-R6), -0.112
4. Martin Cardenas (Suzuki GSX-R600), -0.112
5. Dane Westby (Suzuki GSX-R600), -44.354 seconds
6. Jake Zemke (Ducati 848EVO), -47.418
7. Tommy Hayden (Yamaha YZF-R6), -47.531
8. Jake Gagne (Yamaha YZF-R6), -47.547
9. Tommy Aquino (Yamaha YZF-R6), -47.643
10. Cory West (Suzuki GSX-R600), -58.335
11. J.D. Beach (Yamaha YZF-R6), -82.197
12. Robertino Pietri (Yamaha YZF-R6), -103.442
13. Michael Beck (Yamaha YZF-R6), -1 lap
14. Bobby Fong (Yamaha YZF-R6), -1 lap, 23.705 seconds
15. David Gaviria (Yamaha YZF-R6), -1 lap, 35.475
16. Barrett Long (Ducati 848EVO), -1 lap, 53.346
17. Shawn Higbee (Buell 1125R), -1 lap, 53.522
18. Fernando Amantini (Kawasaki ZX-6R), -1 lap, 72.227
19. Bostjan Skubic (Suzuki GSX-R600), -1 lap, 96.492
20. Ben Young (Yamaha YZF-R6), -2 laps
21. Josh Galster (Yamaha YZF-R6), -2 laps, 0.085 second
22. Reese Wacker (Yamaha YZF-R6), -2 laps, 23.411 seconds
23. Paul Allison (Yamaha YZF-R6), -2 laps, 68.711
24. David Sadowski, Jr. (Suzuki GSX-R600), -2 laps, 88.996
25. Nico Vivarelli (Yamaha YZF-R6), -2 laps, 96.294
26. Melissa Paris (Yamaha YZF-R6), -3 laps
27. Pat Mooney (Buell 1125R), -3 laps, 8.381 seconds
28. Shane Narbonne (Yamaha YZF-R6), -3 laps, 13.632
29. Anthony Fania (Yamaha YZF-R6), -3 laps, 38.375
30. Dalton Dimick (Yamaha YZF-R6), -3 laps, 38.974
31. Ricky Orlando (Kawasaki ZX-6R), -3 laps, 70.436
32. Jeff Wrobel (Yamaha YZF-R6), -4 laps
33. Sam Rozynski (Yamaha YZF-R6), -6 laps
34. Scott Ryan (Yamaha YZF-R6), -6 laps, 50.595 seconds
35. Bryce Prince (Yamaha YZF-R6), -14 laps
36. Frankie Garcia (Yamaha YZF-R6), -25 laps
37. John Ashmead (Kawasaki ZX-6R), -28 laps
38. Matthew Sadowski (Suzuki GSX-R600), -29 laps
39. Darren James (Buell 1125R), -30 laps
40. Austin DeHaven (Yamaha YZF-R6), -40 laps
41. Benny Solis, Jr. (Suzuki GSX-R600), -42 laps
42. Dario Marchetti (Ducati 848EVO), -46 laps
43. Michael Barnes (Yamaha YZF-R6), -48 laps
44. Huntley Nash (Yamaha YZF-R6), DNF
45. Kris Turner (Triumph Daytona 675R), DNS
46. Eric Haugo (Yamaha YZF-R6), DNS
[Source: AMA Pro Racing]