Back on the Map: MotoGP Star Ben Spies Shoots U.S. Back in the Mix Following Assen, Netherlands Victory

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The U.S. is back on the MotoGP map.

All thanks to Oakley MotoGP Star Ben Spies, who claimed a resounding victory in Assen, The Netherlands, to mark the first win by a American rider since fellow Oakley charger Nicky Hayden took the U.S. Grand Prix back on July 23, 2006 in Laguna Seca.

“To do it in front of the Assen fans on Yamaha’s 50th anniversary was great," Ben said, savoring his first MotoGP triumph in his Oakley eyewear. "I had a really good feeling on the warm-up lap, so I wanted to go out as hard as I could at the beginning. Once I saw I had a gap, I tried to keep the gap between Casey (Stoner) and I at three to four seconds. Each time he got closer, I put in a big lap.”

The victory shot him up in the overall season standings to seventh. But as expected, it was no walk in the park.

The entire field rocketed to a chaotic start with Marco Simoncelli and Jorge Lorenzo colliding on the third corner. French standout Randy de Puniet was the race’s next victim – opening the door for Ben, who powered from the front row to smash his way to four seconds ahead of fellow Oakley rider Casey Stoner.

It was relative smooth sailing from there as Ben pulled away from the pack to cross the finish in commanding fashion.

“The race was tough in some ways and easy in some ways. But it was great to have a good rhythm and be by myself where I coulda kind set the pace and it made it difficult the last five laps, but it was fun. Congratulations to these guys. And I’ve got to thank Yamaha; they gave me a great bike today.”

Congratulations to Ben for the big win. Watch for Ben and Nicky Hayden as they smash into MotoGP’s U.S. stops in Laguna Seca and Indianapolis.