Biloxi, MS – After a spectacular freshman season on the professional level of AMA supercross and motocross in 2008 highlighted by an impressive fifth overall in the AMA Motocross class with New Zealand’s Cody Cooper, the Suzuki City team is poised to continue their success into 2009 and beyond with the addition of Matt Goerke and Steven Clarke to their team roster. Both riders will compete in the Eastern Regional Lites series of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross, an FIM World Championship, aboard RM-Z250s.
“Our goal is to be strong and consistent and improve on last year’s results,” states Michael Nasakaitis, team manager. “For 2009 we dropped our number of riders to two. I wanted to focus on just a couple riders this year because with hurdles such as the economy and the sponsors’ ever-shrinking budgets, it was a lot of work to get this team together. But the bottom line is we are going racing.
The Suzuki City team will make their 2009 debut at the Houston round of the Monster Energy AMA Supercross series this Saturday, January 24, 2009, inside Houston’s Reliant Stadium.
Matt Goerke The leader of this young team is 22-year-old Matt Goerke, who is a multi-time amateur national motocross champion hailing from Lake Helen, Florida. Goerke made his professional debut in the summer of 2004 and has shown steady improvement ever since. He’s coming off of a very strong season where he raced with the MDK KTM team, earning #34 for the 2009 season. Goerke will contest the Eastern Regional AMA Supercross Lites Series aboard the #34 RM-Z250, a bike he’s very excited to race. “I love the Suzuki,” says Matt, who dropped 12 pounds in the off-season in preparation of competing aboard the Lites bike. “It handles so good. I never rode a bike that handles this good and I feel that I’m riding well on it. I plan on being up front and on the podium, a lot.”
Vitals D.O.B.: May 1, 1986
Residence: Lake Helen, Florida
Steven Clarke The other and younger half of the Suzuki City team is rookie Steven Clarke, who will be making his professional debut in AMA Supercross this weekend in Houston. Born in West Midlands, England, Clarke has been traveling back and forth to the United States for the past several years, gaining valuable experience on the ultra-competitive U.S. amateur motocross circuit. The 18-year-old bases himself out of the infamous Millsaps Training Facility in Cairo, Georgia, and has been rigorously training and testing for the Houston opener. “Supercross has always been a big goal for me,” admits Clarke, who will be wearing #77. “I’ve been working hard at being a supercross rider; I’ve always liked the jumps and the whoops, so we’ll see how it goes.” Clarke is also very confident in his team and equipment. “I think Suzuki City is a great team and we got some factory backing this year and if Michael [Nasakaitis] keeps pushing at it this team will go a really long way,” he continues. “Cody Cooper had a great season last year and hopefully this year I’m going to put in a good year to help push Suzuki City that much farther.”
Vitals D.O.B.: July 7, 1990
Residence: Cairo, GA
About Suzuki City: Suzuki City is a full-line Suzuki dealership based in Biloxi, Mississippi, which offers a complete line of Suzuki superbikes, sportbikes, cruisers, dual-sport bikes, motocrossers, dirt bikes, and ATVs as well as a big selection of parts, accessories, and apparel. They also offer engine and suspension services. They are also home of RG3 Biloxi, the same suspension that the team uses. Visit www.suzukionly.com for more information.