Ben Spies has described his double World Superbike Championship victory on home soil at Miller Motorsports Park as a 'special moment' he will remember for the rest of his life.
The American was unstoppable in both races around the Utah circuit, leading each lap to secure his sixth victory, and second double, of the season for the Yamaha team.
Coming a day after securing a record-breaking seventh consecutive pole position in qualifying, Spies was overwhelmed by his dominant performance, not least because it was done in front of his home fans.
“It's an amazing feeling to win an international event in your home country,” he said. “I've won plenty of AMA Superbike races here, but to win a world championship event with the home crowd cheering you on is definitely a special moment and one I'm sure I'll remember for the rest of my life.”
Overcoming an interrupted first race to win by almost ten seconds, Spies set an even better pace on the second occasion, smashing the race lap record of 1min 48.768secs in the process.
“I knew I had a bit of margin in hand, but I definitely wanted to cross the finish line in the lead,” Spies said of race one. “I was a little more comfortable in the first segment [before the red flag]. In the second segment I didn't want to take too many risks.
“I had to go fast enough to keep Carlos [Checa] at bay and at the same time keep things under control and that was a tough balancing act. I got into a good rhythm and this track becomes a lot easier if you can find that rhythm.”
“The second race was tough. I almost feel like I robbed Michel of a win. He rode a fantastic race. I tried to set a good pace, a pace that was comfortable. Every time Michel took a tenth [of a second] out of my lead I tried to put it back the next lap.
“The last six laps I pulled the pin and did everything I could to win it. The pace was extremely fast. I saw a 48.7 on my timer and a string of 49s.”