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Blake really is on par if not a better rider than Hayes. The ama gsxr really is a few steps down compared to the r1. Any one that has ever met Blake would tell you he is driven, but he is not arrogant or brash as some here elude to. If you want that just look at Hayes' teammate. If Blake were on the other factory r1, I think it would be josh Hayes being runner up a couple years in a row. Go Blake, and maybe he can still get a full season ama sbk ride on a good bike. Since the arms changed sbk formulas, any good bike with a great team, and an even better rider will be right in the thick of the championship. Especially if Hayes returns to crashing regularly as he usually does.