We Ride Josh Hayes' Graves Yamaha R1 Superbike | ON TWO WHEELS

VIDEO: Associate Editor Zack Courts goes to NOLA Motorsports Park to ride an AMA Superbike.

I hardly expected to get the good gigs until I'd served my tour of fetching people coffee and washing bikes. Awhile back when I was the FNG on staff, the boss threw me a bone and sent me to NOLA Motorsports Park to ride Josh Hayes' three-time championship-winning Graves Yamaha R1. Having roadraced for 10 years and being a fan my whole life, I have watched Superbikes and wished I could ride one for as long as I can remember.

As the day approached, all I could think about was what it would be like when I opened the throttle, what it would feel like to hang off and drag my knee on a piece of Superbike history. In the end, the experience did not disappoint. Yamaha was endlessly hospitable, providing us with food/water/shade for the day and best of all, access to the daily grind of developing a Superbike. I was able to spend time with Josh Hayes on track (image above) and in the pits, talking to him about riding.

The bike was obviously stunning, and of course I wish I could have spent more time on it, if for no other reason than to feel like I was actually grasping what it is capable of. I ended up turning 19 laps in two sessions, enough to get me sweating and cramp up my hands. But I have wanted more ever since.