Ben Spies Rides 2009 Yamaha R1 Superbike


American Superbike champion Ben Spies rode the Yamaha R1 Superbike this afternoon. His ride included a stint on the \'08 and \'09 models.

The last time Ben Spies rode a Yamaha it was an R6 a 600 in an endurance race at Indianapolis Raceway Park in 1996. Since then he\'s been a full-time Suzuki man, winning the Superbike title three times. Time now for a new chapter though: Spies signed with Yamaha and made his maiden voyage on an R1 today at Autodromo International Algarve in Portugal.

\"I think it\'s going to be good,\" Spies said after his two short riding stints. Wearing black and white leathers, he put in a few laps on Haga\'s ex-R1 Superbike, then came in and the team rolled out a very black and very new 2009 Yamaha Superbike. With its distinctive exhaust note--sounding slightly like an RC45--Spies did a lap and then returned to the garage to have some changes made to it. Soon after that the checkered flag flew, ending the day of press testing.

Spies will have a full day to test tomorrow when he takes to the track on a day which will see him ride the Yamaha, and Max Biaggi ride the Aprilia as well.