On The Record: Cameron Beaubier, Monster Energy Graves Yamaha Superbike Rider

Third overall in the 2014 AMA Superbike title chase, the 22-year-old Californian describes his new Yamaha YZF-R1 and last week’s two-day MotoAmerica Dunlop tire test at the 20-turn, 3.4-mile Circuit of The Americas, site of the series’ season-opening race, April 9-12.

I did 10 laps in the rain on Wednesday morning. I think that was good for me. I was able to learn where I was going before we put on slicks and really got going.

We stayed on the hard rear Dunlop tire pretty much the entire day—two and half sessions. I was just sliding around and making some changes. We threw on a new set of tires with 15 minutes to go in the last practice and the difference was like night and day. We went with the medium compound and everything—bike, track—felt new.

Everything started to connect and that gave me a lot of confidence. I was able to go back to the hotel, run through the track in my head, and sleep on it. That was super good for me.

On Thursday morning, we started out strong. I put in a race-length stint—15 laps. This track is really physical, and I wanted to make sure I was solid in a race situation. I felt good. I was plugging away, not pushing like crazy, and getting a good flow going.

Obviously, I got tired, but I could still keep going and I know what to expect when we come back here in April. In the actual race, I’m sure it will be more intense. I’ll battle with the guys and get some adrenaline going.

Cameron Beaubier posted the quickest lap of the MotoAmerica Dunlop tire test, a 2:10.730.

We put on new tires for the last session, went out, and did a couple fast laps. I didn’t get a perfect lap—I made a couple mistakes—but when we come back here for the race, we’ll be ready.

The medium-compound front was working good. We were mostly making changes to the rear of the bike, trying to get some more grip.

I can’t thank my guys enough for all the hard work they put in. They’ve been staying up until two in the morning getting ready for this test. It’s pretty cool they’re working that hard. I need to keep up my hard work, too, and get ready for the season.

Last year’s bike was amazing; they spent six years developing it. That’s a badass bike. It’s definitely not as forgiving as this bike. This bike feels more like a really advanced R6. It’s a lot smaller than the last R1. I feel like I’m controlling it; it’s not riding me.

I like Circuit of The Americas a lot. On Wednesday, I was kind of struggling. I couldn’t get a good flow going. You almost have to slow down to go fast. I pushed really hard, looked at my lap timer and it was a decent lap but not what I expected. Next lap, I smoothed out, hit all my marks, and went faster. It’s one of those tracks where you can’t rush the corners too much.

I really like that long triple-apex right-hander. You can get the rear hung out a little bit. I don’t slide a lot—that’s not really my riding style—but it felt cool.

Third overall in the 2014 AMA Superbike title chase, the 22-year-old Californian describes his new Yamaha YZF-R1 and last week’s two-day MotoAmerica Dunlop tire test at the 20-turn, 3.4-mile Circuit of The Americas, site of the series’ season-opening race, April 9-12.

I did 10 laps in the rain on Wednesday morning. I think that was good for me. I was able to learn where I was going before we put on slicks and really got going.

We stayed on the hard rear Dunlop tire pretty much the entire day—two and half sessions. I was just sliding around and making some changes. We threw on a new set of tires with 15 minutes to go in the last practice and the difference was like night and day. We went with the medium compound and everything—bike, track—felt new.

Everything started to connect and that gave me a lot of confidence. I was able to go back to the hotel, run through the track in my head, and sleep on it. That was super good for me.

On Thursday morning, we started out strong. I put in a race-length stint—15 laps. This track is really physical, and I wanted to make sure I was solid in a race situation. I felt good. I was plugging away, not pushing like crazy, and getting a good flow going.

Obviously, I got tired, but I could still keep going and I know what to expect when we come back here in April. In the actual race, I’m sure it will be more intense. I’ll battle with the guys and get some adrenaline going.

Cameron Beaubier posted the quickest lap of the MotoAmerica Dunlop tire test, a 2:10.730.

We put on new tires for the last session, went out, and did a couple fast laps. I didn’t get a perfect lap—I made a couple mistakes—but when we come back here for the race, we’ll be ready.

The medium-compound front was working good. We were mostly making changes to the rear of the bike, trying to get some more grip.

I can’t thank my guys enough for all the hard work they put in. They’ve been staying up until two in the morning getting ready for this test. It’s pretty cool they’re working that hard. I need to keep up my hard work, too, and get ready for the season.

Last year’s bike was amazing; they spent six years developing it. That’s a badass bike. It’s definitely not as forgiving as this bike. This bike feels more like a really advanced R6. It’s a lot smaller than the last R1. I feel like I’m controlling it; it’s not riding me.

I like Circuit of The Americas a lot. On Wednesday, I was kind of struggling. I couldn’t get a good flow going. You almost have to slow down to go fast. I pushed really hard, looked at my lap timer and it was a decent lap but not what I expected. Next lap, I smoothed out, hit all my marks, and went faster. It’s one of those tracks where you can’t rush the corners too much.

I really like that long triple-apex right-hander. You can get the rear hung out a little bit. I don’t slide a lot—that’s not really my riding style—but it felt cool.

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