Superbike in a Box

Yoshimura GSX-R1000 Superbike

The most cursory look at the new-for-2003 hardware tells you times have indeed changed. Suzuki Superbikes have come a long way since Wes Cooley's 140-horsepower, 420-pound GS1000 powered Yoshimura to its first AMA title in '79. Twenty years after American Superbikes shrunk to 750cc in '83, Yoshimura Team Manager Don Sakakura's boys will put full-liter fours back on the grid at Daytona about the time you read this. Mat Mladin, Ben Spies and Aaron Yates will command 190-plus horsepower, 370-something-pound GSX-R1000s, replacing the overachieving GSX-R750 Mladin rode to three straight Superbike titles in '99, '00 and '01.

Photos by Brian J. Nelson and Kevin Wing