“Gratubiente!” To Team M4 EMGO Suzuki’s Vincent Haskovec On His Win
(Rome, GA) When Pirelli Tires and Team M4 EMGO Suzuki teamed up this year, both had high hopes for success. Those hopes combined with the requisite hard work and preparation paid off in the best possible way. In the opening race of 2005 the AMA season at Daytona International Speedway on Thursday afternoon, M4 EMGO’s Vincent Haskovec and his Pirelli-mounted GSX-R1000 captured a dramatic win in the Superstock final.
Geoff May, Haskovec’s teammate, took the sixth spot ahead of Kawasaki’s Tommy Hayden. Lion Racing’s Jake Holden was 10th on his GSX-R, giving Pirelli three of the top 10 finishers.
They call the colorful and enthusiastic Haskovec “the Bouncing Czech” – a nickname reinforced by his crowd-pleasing comments in Victory Lane. But he was the epitome of calm and cool as he methodically worked his way past the five leading riders after catching them on the fifth lap. He was in second place by the ninth lap of the 13-lap race, having passed Team Yamaha riders Jason DeSalvo and Jamie Hacking, and Jason Pridmore in his impressive debut ride for Michael Jordan Motorsports (he finished third). On the 10th lap Haskovec passed race leader Aaron Yates and his Yoshimura Suzuki, and was never headed, beating Yates by .302 of a second, several bike lengths, at the line.
In a classic understatement, Pirelli’s North American Road Racing Coordinator Bob Henderson said, “It’s a step in the right direction and part of our plan for ’05. Crew chief Keith Perry and the whole M4 team have done an A-1 job putting this program together. Geoff and Vincent gave us great feedback during the Daytona tire testing and last weekend at the F-USA and CCS races, and it’s so good to have riders capable of that.”
Henderson also commented about the team’s aid in the development of Pirelli’s next evolution of race slicks. “I think we just proved we have the tires right now that can win at the highest levels of AMA racing. But Pirelli wants to go further, developing race tires here in America for American racers. And M4, with the experience, professionalism and riders they have, is going to be a big part of that. For our part, we have our top factory engineers and race technicians coming to the States for every AMA round. Carsten Merz and Thomas Thierolf from Milan have been here all week. Pirelli’s made a serious commitment to the American market; we’re not backing into this thing.”
By the way, “gratubiente” is Czech for “congratulations!”