• Mar 16th 2011 at 7:00PM
  • 13
Jason DiSalvo wins the 2011 Daytona 200 – Click above for high-res image gallery

While this year's Daytona 200 was a great day for Ducati and its 848 EVO, it left something to be desired for everyone else. The race was blighted by tire issues, a bad final-lap crash that the riders were lucky to walk away from and a controversy stemming from Ducati's win.

The controversy started with a red flag late in the race and a mandatory tire change for all riders. On the same lap, Ducati rider Jason DiSalvo blew a cylinder on his machine. Eventually, race officials decided to re-start around 3:30 and run the rest of the 200 as a 15-lap sprint to the finish. Besides angering fans who paid to see a 200-mile single race and would end up with 147 miles over two races, the delay allowed DiSalvo's team time to change his blown engine.

With permission from the AMA, DiSalvo was back in the race. In the final seconds of the all-out 15-lap sprint to the finish, DiSalvo passed Cory West on a draft to take the win. That wasn't the end, though. Since there had been a red flag, there was some confusion as to who should be crowned the victor.

There was talk of letting the results from the lap before the red flag stand. That would have meant the race ended with Josh Herrin out front, JD Beach in second and Jake Zemke third. Officials decided, however, that since the top six riders had crossed the line before the red flag fell and everyone else was still on the previous lap, the results from the 15-lap sprint would decide the winner.

That meant that Jason Di Salvo, who before the red flag was out of the race, was crowned race winner, followed by Cory West and Jake Zemke. The result was no doubt a great moment for Ducati and DiSalvo, but left the guys who were ahead before the red flag and the fans who saw a shortened race feeling understandably spurned.

Click past the jump for a press release from Ducati celebrating the victory and a video of the closing laps of the 2011 Daytona 200.

Jason DiSalvo leads the Daytona 200
  • Jason DiSalvo leads the Daytona 200
  • Jason DiSalvo leads the Daytona 200

  • Jason DiSalvo leads the Daytona 200
  • Jason DiSalvo leads the Daytona 200

  • Jason DiSalvo wins the Daytona 200
  • Jason DiSalvo wins the Daytona 200

  • Jason DiSalvo wins the Daytona 200
  • Jason DiSalvo wins the Daytona 200

  • Jason DiSalvo wins the Daytona 200
  • Jason DiSalvo wins the Daytona 200

  • Jason DiSalvo wins the Daytona 200
  • Jason DiSalvo wins the Daytona 200

[Source: Motorcycle USA, Axis Of Oversteer, Ducati]

Show full PR text

The new Ducati 848EVO proves itself a winner and ends Ducati's
legendary Daytona draught

Daytona Beach, FL (12 March 2011) - In what can only be described as
a wild and closely fought race, privateer Jason DiSalvo and Team Latus
Motors Racing took the new Ducati 848EVO to victory in today's Daytona
200- the bike's first professional road race.

The 2011 season opener at Daytona International Speedway had great
potential for Ducati before the green flag even dropped, thanks to the
848EVO being the weapon of choice for the Daytona Sportbike class. The
Daytona 200 had seven 848EVO entries, the most Ducati's on the 200
grid in over ten years.

"I really want to thank the Latus Ducati guys for all of their work in
the pits. I'm so happy I can give Ducati their first Daytona 200 win
in my first race on the bike, and the 848EVO's first ever AMA race!
It's a magical thing and I'm excited to fight for the championship as
the season goes on, "said DiSalvo.

DiSalvo's victory in today's race places him amongst legendary riders
in Ducati's long racing history. The 848EVO proved to be the bike
which accomplished one of Ducati's biggest wins in its US racing
history, and the company will now set sights on the season

"I am proud of what Jason and Team Latus Motors Racing have
accomplished today. I wish them the best for the rest of the season
and cannot wait to see our latest model post more victories!" said
Cristiano Silei, CEO of Ducati North America.

The 848EVO's next race will take place at California's Infineon
Raceway May 13-15th. For more information about the new Ducati 848EVO,
please visit www.ducatiusa.com.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      Hey, I thought a red flag during a race meant you could NOT TOUCH the vehicle - just ask Sterling Marlin.

      AMA mandated a tire change for the field during the red flag but Di Slavo's team had permission to swap an entire motor???? Don't they have to finish with the same engine presented for practice?

      REALLY Bizarre rules in the AMA but Congrats to Jason Di Salvo on the win!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Maybe the AMA should define "endurance race".
      • 4 Years Ago
      Im not a bike guy at all, but man those guys can ride!
      • 4 Years Ago
      So..... you can blow an engine and somehow still win the race? How does that make any sense? I watched the race on tv, well, thankfully DVR. The racing action was great up until the red flag. The officials really messed this one up. So they red flagged the race due to front tire issues and mandated a front tire change. Great, everyone should change their tires and be back out on track in a minute right? Nope.... they sat around for over an hour I think (I just fast fwded thru on the DVR). Hmmm..... give Ducati time to swap engines?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Ducati did not win the daytona 200. It won the daytona 147. The 200 is still a long shot, for 1 motor to go the distance.
      Another ducati expired 5 laps before the shortened end, & that bike was on the original motor it started with.
      • 4 Years Ago
      DMG brought everyone into the pits and required them to work on their bikes. How are they supposed to ban working on the bikes when they are requiring them to change tires?

      Furthermore, do any AMA fans remember 2007 Road Atlanta? Ben Spies caused a red flag, he remounted and rode to the pits for repairs, then he restarted the race. DiSalvo didn't cause the red flag at Daytona so the red flag rules have actually improved slightly, imo.

      Put an asterisk next to the 2011 Daytona 200 and move on. Chaz Davies has an asterisk on his win. Duhamel has an asterisk next to his 2005 win b/c it was in FX on the 2.9 mile configuration, not SBK on the 3.5 mile configuration.

      An asterisk is not the end of the world. Just get the tires sorted for 2012.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I never knew there was such a thing as motorbike racing on banked circuits. That's pretty cool!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Ducati 849cc - Japanese 599cc = 250cc. Advantage Ducati.
      Allowed to change a blown engine mid-race. Advantage Ducati.
      Ducati, the advantage machine!

      • 4 Years Ago
      I can't think of a worse run racing series on Earth... AMA... what a failure in every way... They have only done one thing consistently since I've started attending and watching their racing series back in the 1990s, fail at delivering an exciting, competitive, affordable regional third tier racing series... This is just one of many failures with this poorly run organization.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Really, doesn't this defeat the purpose of endurance racing?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Wow! What a poor decision by the race officials. Time to go look for a new job!
        • 4 Years Ago
        The 50 people watching the race must have been pissed!
        • 4 Years Ago
        I'm actually a fan I watched the race and it was the best ama race I've seen in a very long time. Glad they decided the race on the track not in some meeting.
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