The U.S. factory Yoshimura Suzuki squad must be in shock today, as their No. 1 star rider Mat Mladin has been disqualified from his two wins at Virginia International Raceway last weekend.
Post-race tear-down indicated a possible question about the engine’s crankshaft; Suzuki eagerly provided a couple of stock cranks for comparison, and yesterday (August 21), the announcement came that the race crank is illegal and Mladin’s victories are washed out.
Now, to say the least I’m no tech guru, but after Josh Hayes was disqualified from winning the Daytona 200 on a factory Honda (for a crankshaft violation), and Suzuki’s main man in the U.S. Mladin has now been hit with a similar penalty for the same reason, one has to wonder about the quality and interpretation of the rules.
I, personally, simply do not believe that either Honda or Suzuki would knowingly cheat on something as obvious as modifying crankshafts. The embarrassment potential simply far outweighs the chance of victory.
Something smells, and I don’t think it’s the teams’ bike preparation.
This now gives Mladin’s team-mate Ben Spies a huge — in fact, insurmountable — points advantage heading into the last race of the season at Laguna Seca, California, September 28.