The country's top amateur road racers showcased their skills at the American Motorcyclist Association Road Race Grand Championship held at Virginia International Raceway in Alton, Va., Sept. 19-20.
Xavier Zayat wins 2015 AMA Road Race Horizon Award
PICKERINGTON, Ohio -- The country's top amateur road racers showcased their skills at the American Motorcyclist Association Road Race Grand Championship held at Virginia International Raceway in Alton, Va., Sept. 19-20.
"VIR provided a great venue for America's top amateur talent to see how their road racing talent and skills measure up," said AMA Track Racing Manager Ken Saillant. "Several racers stood out, not only winning their classes but earning special honors for their outstanding performances."
Seventeen-year-old Xavier Zayat from Bronx, N.Y., took home top honors from the event, winning the 2015 AMA Road Race Horizon Award. The distinction honors the rider showing the most promise for success in the professional ranks. In addition to Zayat, past winners of the AMA Road Race Horizon Award have included Jason DiSalvo, Ben Spies and Blake Young. Zayat also won the Expert AMA SuperSport 600 national championship at the event, in addition to the Expert AMA Moto 2 national championship.
"It's a privilege to be awarded [the Road Race Horizon Award]," Zayat said. "It's what every young road racer dreams of, coming up through the ranks. This award means you're on the right track."
Zayat has been road racing since 2007 and currently rides a Yamaha R6 in amateur classes around the country.
"My love for racing started by watching MotoGP on TV with my dad and having dreams of being out there with those guys," he said. "I don't have any history in my family of racing. Some families watch football on the weekends. We watch MotoGP."
Xavier Zayat was named the 2015 AMA Road Race Horizon Award Winner. Photography by Brian J. Nelson.
Zayat is thankful for the support he receives.
"I'm lucky to have the parents I do," he said. "I feel like I have talent and the right people behind me to bring it to the next level. My tuner, Mike Faillace, has been a big help throughout the year, along with my other sponsors."
Zayat hopes to race the Superstock 600 class in MotoAmerica next year.
"I'm just going to take it step by step," he said. "Next is to pull through the ranks and establish myself in America. If it turns out that I'm good enough to go overseas, that'd be great. Ultimately, my goal is to have a successful career in racing."
The 2015 AMA Youth Road Racer of the Year award went to 14-year-old Jackson Blackmon of Rock Hill, S.C.
Blackmon captured the Expert AMA Moto 3 class aboard a Moriwaki 250.
Adam Ayers of Wellington, Colo., won the AMA Novice Road Racer of the Year award.
Ayers raced aboard his Yamaha R6 and secured the AMA Moto 2 and AMA Superbike 600 national championships.
The AMA Vet/Senior Road Racer of the Year honor went to Brian Kcraget of Dry Fork, Va.
He seized the national championship in the Expert AMA SuperSport Lightweight Twins class on his Suzuki 650.
The AMA Road Race Grand Championship ran in combination with CCS sprint events and Round 7 of the ASRA Team Challenge. To view full results from the event, see www.ccsracing.us/results/2015/092015%20VIR%20CCS%20Results.pdf.