Allstate Motorcycle Insurance Announces 2017 Winner!
|SACRAMENTO, Calif. (May 20, 2017) – The massive crowd of American Flat Track fans who flooded the Cal Expo Fairgrounds for the Harley-Davidson Sacramento Mile presented by Cycle Gear witnessed both a rider and a manufacturer in action at the height of their powers.
And in doing so, the reigning Grand National Champion not only extended Indian’s 2017 win streak, he led the third Indian Motorcycle Racing podium sweep this season in AFT Twins presented by Vance & Hines competition.
Smith and his fellow members of the Indian Wrecking Crew, Jared Mees (No. 9 Indian Motorcycle Rogers Racing Scout FTR750) and Brad Baker (No. 6 Indian Motorcycle Racing backed by Allstate Scout FTR750), were again in a class of their own on Saturday night.
Almost immediately, the Indian-mounted teammate/rivals ripped away from the rest of the Main Event field. They then waged an intra-team battle that alternately required pace, patience, slipstreaming and strategy for practically the entirety of the 25-mile distance.
While all three took their turns at the front, Baker appeared to be in control, even pulling a small gap as he sailed past the white flag. However, that was only an illusion, as Smith leapt past Mees to slot into second on the final trip down the back straight, and then blasted past Baker once they hit the front straight to steal away the win as they raced to the checkered flag.
Mees followed in Smith’s wake to tow past Baker as well, transforming what had seemed a likely win for Baker into a third-place run in just fractions of a second.
Smith’s victory came by a minuscule 0.025-second margin over Mees, with Baker a further 0.05 seconds adrift in third. The win was Smith’s seventh in succession at the Sacramento Mile, and his third in a row this season.
After securing sole possession of the championship lead, Smith said, “I played my cards just right. I sat back there, saved my tire, and went hard the last couple laps. That pace Brad set was pretty hard, and I didn’t know if the tires would hold up, so I just cruised back in third. I saw ‘five to go’ and wanted to inch up there. I led it there for a minute with three to go and knew I wanted to be back (in third). I was a sitting duck. So I waited to the last lap to make my move and fortunately drafted Brad. I’m so happy to get seven in a row in front of this great crowd in Sacramento. This place is definitely special to me”
Speaking for the field, the fans in the grandstands, and motorcycle racing fans around the world, Smith added, “We’re all thinking about Nicky Hayden. That one’s for him. Get well, buddy – we’ll be seeing ya.”
While he got pushed out of at least a share of the championship lead for the first time this season, Mees did manage to maintain his perfect 2017 podium streak with his runner-up result in Sacramento. And encouragingly, for the second consecutive weekend he showed the speed to push the likes of Smith and Baker right to the brink around a big track.
Mees said, “I’ve got to give a big shout out to my team. We were a little off in the Semi and Bryan really put it to us. In the Main Event, we turned things upside down, and we were able to be a player rather than just hanging on.
“It was a good race, and it’s great to get another Indian sweep with these guys. It stinks getting second, especially to a guy you’re battling in points, but it’s great for Indian Motorcycles. I’m honored to be a part of it. You can’t complain about seconds and thirds – we’ll get some wins, that’s for sure.”
Baker was again left with a bitter taste in his mouth following an otherwise stellar performance, especially after practically tasting his first Scout FTR750-mounted victory.
“I didn’t know if I was controlling the race, or if I was just the mouse getting chased,” Baker said. “It turns out I was just the mouse getting chased. Great job to Jared and Bryan.
“It kind of sucks, getting second and third over and over again, especially at these Miles where I want to win so badly… Jared and Bryan just had a little bit better strategy there at the end. I led over the stripe so many times, I thought I might be able to get there on the last one. But I guess I just spun it up a little bit too much and let those guys squeak on by.”
Sammy Halbert (No. 69 Estenson Logistics Yamaha FZ-07) tracked down a quick-starting Jeffrey Carver Jr. (No. 23 Carver’s BBQ Kawasaki Ninja 650) and then proceeded to outduel him over the Main Event’s second half to snatch away fourth place by a narrow 0.050 seconds.
Texter Scores Second Straight AFT Singles Win
While it took Richie Morris Racing’s Shayna Texter almost four seasons to claim her seventh career AFT Singles victory, it took just an additional week to earn her eighth.
Texter won out in a thrilling battle that saw her and Tristan Avery (No. 16 Ron Ayers Honda CRF450R) run down early leader Kevin Stollings (No. 99 Ben Evans Honda CRF450R), who had built a sizable early advantage.
Once together on track, the three traded haymakers, including a memorable sequence in which Texter split her rivals as they momentarily ran three abreast before she emerged from third in first with just two laps remaining.
The final lap required that Texter pull one final rabbit out of her helmet. She launched the No. 52 Richie Morris Racing Honda CRF450R off the final corner and shot past Avery to claim the checkered flag by 0.065 seconds.
Stollings, who led the bulk of the race, ended up third, 0.170 seconds off the win.
Asked about her strategy, Texter admitted, “I really wasn’t thinking; I was just trying to get up to the front and stay there. It took a long time to catch Kevin. He was riding his butt off and he was really strong in the corners and I kept spinning it up. It seemed like I caught Stollings, and then Tristan came out of nowhere.
“I knew that I could do it if I could get out there and make my marks right, but honestly, this Mile racing is a little bit of a gamble and luck. You just have to be in the right spot at the right time. I saw Tristan spun it a little bit coming out of four, and I just tried to do the opposite. I was able to get a nice drive off of him, and it was enough to hold off Stollings.”
The Harley-Davidson Sacramento Mile presented by Cycle Gear will debut on NBCSN on Thursday, August 3, at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT. For race highlights click here: https://www.facebook.
Fans can also keep up-to-date with race day action by following American Flat Track on Facebook (American Flat Track), Twitter (@AmericanFlatTrk) and Instagram (@AmericanFlatTrack).
How to Watch:
NBCSN and FansChoice.tv are the official homes for coverage of American Flat Track events. All 18 rounds, from the season-opening DAYTONA TT to the American Flat Track Finals in Southern California, will air in one-hour, tape-delayed telecasts on Thursday nights throughout the summer and fall on NBCSN, while FansChoice.tv provides live streaming coverage of American Flat Track events. FansChoice.tv also provides coverage of IMSA’s development and single-make series, and NASCAR’s touring and weekly series. Catch all the action at http://www.nbcsports.com/ and http://www.FansChoice.tv.About American Flat Track:
American Flat Track is the world’s premier dirt track motorcycle racing series and one of the longest-running championships in the history of motorsports. Sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing in Daytona Beach, Fla., the series is highly regarded as the most competitive form of dirt track motorcycle racing on the globe. For more information on American Flat Track, please visit http://www.americanflattrack.
Shayna Texter ends win drought in an AFT Singles thriller
PHOENIX, Ariz. (May 13, 2017) – The Indian Wrecking Crew once again lived up to its moniker in the fourth round of the 2017 American Flat Track championship. The trio of factory riders secured a dominant sweep of the AFT Twins presented by Vance & Hines podium at the Law Tigers Arizona Mile presented by Indian Motorcycle.
Leading the charge around Turf Paradise was reigning Grand National Champion Bryan Smith. Smith drew upon every last ounce of his trademark Mile magic to position his No. 1 Indian Motorcycle Racing backed by Allstate Scout FTR750 ahead of the identical No. 6 Indian Scout FTR750 of Brad Baker at the checkered flag by a scant 0.057 seconds.
Following two red flags and with the sun quickly headed to the horizon, the AFT Twins presented by Vance & Hines Main Event was reconfigured into a dramatic five-lap shootout. At the second and final restart, Baker again resumed his place at the front of the field and appeared well on his way to grabbing his first victory of 2017. However, Smith had other ideas, ducking down the inside at the opening of the penultimate lap and held strong from there.
“It was a little bit of strategy,” Smith said. “I just sat on Brad’s rear tire, and luckily it worked out where I got by him with two to go. I went on by him and had just enough where I was a little bit better, mostly off of (Turn) 2.”
The cagey performance was the 20th Mile victory of Smith’s career, good enough to rank fifth most in American Flat Track history. It was also his 28th overall AFT Twins win, which ties him with fellow Michigan natives Bart Markel and Henry Wiles for tenth on the all-time order.
“It’s pretty cool at 28 wins that I tied Bark Markel, the original godfather of the Michigan Mafia,” Smith said. “And it’s pretty special for me to be, I believe, the only rider to win a Mile on three different brands and tie his record. Hopefully next weekend I can break it.”
Runner-up Baker said, “I wanted that win so dang bad. I don’t think I’ve wanted a win more in my life. This type of track is one I typically struggle at – one that’s dry, slick, one-lined – where you kind of have to go slow to go fast and ride with a lot of discipline.
“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t disappointed and angry. But they call Bryan the “Master of the Miles,” and he’s great at this. This is definitely a heartbreaker because I was the guy to beat all day… We’re on identical equipment so it’s not like I had any more horsepower than him or he had any more horsepower than me. It was all about who was the best rider, and today, Bryan proved his experience and craft on the Miles.”
Smith now sits perfectly even on top of the AFT Twins title fight with Jared Mees (No. 9 Indian Motorcycle Rogers Racing Scout FTR750) at 87 apiece. Mees retained a share of the points lead by furthering his season-long string of podium results with a close third.
Despite struggling with shifter issues, Mees managed to keep Smith and Baker honest throughout and finished just over a half-second back of the win.
“It was good for Indian Motorcycle, but we just didn’t quite have it today,” Mees said. “Honestly, we were third place all day… I was pretty much a sitting duck in third; we couldn’t really do anything. I was just grateful to get it into gear really quick off the line and kind of latch onto these guys. Brad had a helluva pace early on, but hats off to Bryan – he just put in a veteran move in on that last lap and a half and made it happen. I feel like Brad was probably the fastest, but Bryan out-schooled him.”
Thanks to the combined efforts of Smith and Mees early in 2017, the Indian Scout FTR750 has now opened its first full season of American Flat Track competition by claiming a victory in each Grand Slam discipline (TT, Short Track, Half-Mile, Mile).
Sammy Halbert continued to make his mark as the top privateer with a solid fourth-place run aboard the No. 69 Estenson Logistics Yamaha FZ-07. Halbert actually had to put in a charge just to snare the final qualifying position in the LCQ in order to advance into the Semis. But following that early scare, Halbert proved himself to be the only rider capable of reliably keeping the Indian Wrecking Crew in sight in Phoenix, even if only for a handful of laps at a time.
Jarod Vanderkooi (No. 20 Richie Morris Racing Kawasaki Ninja 650) completed the top five, finishing just ahead of the similarly mounted Briar Bauman (No. 14 Zanotti Racing Kawasaki Ninja 650) andJake Shoemaker (No. 55 Weirbach Racing Kawasaki USA Kawasaki Ninja 650).
Harley-Davidson’s early-season woes continued at Turf Paradise. Jake Johnson (No. 5 Harley-Davidson Factory Flat Track Team XG750R) was the only rider among the firm’s trio of factory-backed talents to make the Main Event. To make matters worse, Johnson’s day then ended in a crash which brought out one of the aforementioned red flags.
Texter Takes Title Lead With AFT Singles Triumph
Shayna Texter stepped forward to seize control of the AFT Singles class with a hard-earned win aboard her No. 52 Richie Morris Racing Honda CRF450R.
Texter was hounded throughout the Main by Tristan Avery (No. 16 Ron Ayers Honda CRF450R) and Brandon Price (No. 92 DPC Racing/Don’s Kawasaki KX450F), but proved almost impossible to draft by and even more difficult to stay in front of.
Texter said, “It was a long 15 laps. I just tried to stay smooth and make as few mistakes as I possibly could. I knew those guys were on me; I could see them in my shadow going down the back stretch. I just tried to be smart and keep them behind me.”
The narrow .041 of a second win was the seventh of Texter’s AFT Singles career and her first since the 2013 season. Her 2017 campaign is trending upward in a serious fashion; she’s now logged third-, second-, and first-place finishes in consecutive events.
“It feels awesome to get back up there – it’s been a rough couple of years,” Texter admitted. “I finally get to ride a motorcycle that’s stable and allows me to show what I have under the helmet. It’s really exciting to get back up here.”
American Flat Track powers right into the second of its run of four Miles in four weeks with the Harley-Davidson Sacramento Mile presented by Cycle Gear on Saturday, May 20. Live coverage can be viewed on FansChoice.tv beginning on Saturday at 6:00 p.m. ET (3:00 p.m. PT). Tickets for the Sacramento Mile are on sale and can be purchased at http://sactomile.com/
McElroy Packaging Lucky 7 – #52 Shayna Texter
Motul Move of the Race – #52 Shayna Texter
AFT Twins presented by Vance & Hines
Ohlins Fastest Lap – #1 Bryan Smith
McElroy Packaging Lucky 13 – #1 Bryan Smith
How to Watch:
NBCSN and FansChoice.tv are the official homes for coverage of American Flat Track events. All 18 rounds, from the season-opening DAYTONA TT to the American Flat Track Finals in Southern California, will air in one-hour, tape-delayed telecasts on Thursday nights throughout the summer and fall on NBCSN, while FansChoice.tv provides live streaming coverage of American Flat Track events. FansChoice.tv also provides coverage of IMSA’s development and single-make series, and NASCAR’s touring and weekly series. Catch all the action at http://www.nbcsports.com/ and http://www.FansChoice.tv.
About American Flat Track:
The sixth annual Vintage Rally at the National Motorcycle Museum was a supreme mix of people and motorcycles. It’s a once a year event in the east central Iowa town of Anamosa, and showcases one of America’s finest and most diverse motorcycle museums.
Vintage Rally Bike Show “Best in Show” award went to Russ Bees for his accurately 1955 Nimbus Model C, a smooth running four cylinder bike from Denmark.Bikes Show participants relax after after placing their motorcycles on the grid, giving them a final polishing before 10 highly qualified judges did their work.Don Rosene, dealer, British bike collector, Anchorage, Alaska, and Mike Crone, Triumph collector, Orlando, Florida, served as Bike Show judges and here scrutinize a fine Triumph dirt track racer.With seven experts holding a wide range of knowledge and interests, and home bases as far away as Alaska, California and Florida, visitors learned about purchase, restoration, care, documentation and more, all related to Motorcycle Collecting, the panel discussion at Vintage Rally.Visitors to Vintage Rally 2016 were the first to view the new Allstate Motorcycle STREAMLINERS exhibit presented b J&P Cycles. Among the interesting land speed record machines is Monster, a heavily reinforced Henderson chassis, Plymouth flathead six-powered, machine. Monster ran at Bonneville in the mid-1930’s and hit over 160 miles per hour.Exhibition Curator, and author, John Stein refers to the Cal Rayborn/Denis Manning Harley-Davidson streamliner as perhaps the most important land speed record motorcycle extant. Harley Sportster powered, the combined skills of Manning and Rayborn pushed the ultimate record for two-wheeled machines to just over 265 miles per hour in 1970. Thanks to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum and Hall of Fame for loaning it from their collection.Motor Maids, Sammie Weisner, Pennsylvania, Glennadine Gouldman and Ellen Taylor, Virginia, traveled long distance to Vintage Rally. They brought along apparel and other great objects representing the life of famed Motor Maid, Helen Kiss Main. Loaning these objects for display, they helped Museum staff get them safely into showcases.
The Vintage Rally Swap Meet, largest in the event’s history, offered parts for a wide range of old bikes, petroleana, even sculpture and fine art made with motorcycle parts. While many bikes in the Museum have interesting stock and custom pin-striping, visitors were also treated to artists demonstrating their pin-striping techniques on site.Nearly 20,000 visitors journey to the National Motorcycle Museum each year. When you come by make sure you add a pin to the map recognizing your home town.If it were not for the vision and hard work of John and Jill Parham, founders of the original J&P Cycles, now constant “volunteers” to the Museum, there would be no National Motorcycle Museum. Wishing for the National Motorcycle Museum and Hall of Fame, originally in Sturgis, South Dakota, to succeed financially, to flourish and help tell the story of American Motorcycling, Parham brought the Museum to Anamosa, Iowa and injected it with his spirit, energy and ingenuity.Air show? Traveling all the way from Minneapolis, aviation historians Denny Eggert and Bill Miller have been responsible for the preservation of the rare 1911 STECO Aerohydroplane, now in the Museum’s collection, though not yet on display. They thrilled the crowd when they fired up the Steco’s engine on a test stand. Fundraising work continues to get the one-of-a-kind airplane stabilized and installed in the National Motorcycle Museum.
Tom “Santa Claus” Anderson became quite animated as he brought his decades of passion for Land Speed Record racing onto the floor of the Museum and into the new Allstate Motorcycle STREAMLINERSexhibit presented by J&P Cycles. Tom is an official “coach” for novice LSR participants at Bonneville, helping them get the most out of their experience racing on the Salt Flats.Vintage Rally is an event for motorcyclists of any brand or country of origin interest, but some go to extremes when expressing their allegiance.Each year visitors to Vintage Rally are treated to the dedication of a new major exhibition. Son of ‘Big Sid’ Biberman, English professor Matthew Biberman, explains his novice year on the salt with two Vincents. “Imagine working in the hot sun, 120 degree temperatures, and trying to keep two old Vincents running well.”
Ron Kingsley brought two fine original condition BSA’s to the Bike Show. The BSA Bantam, with its fine rooster transfer still intact on the fuel tank, won the Hagerty Insurance “Best Preserved British Bike” award. Kingsley is loaning both bikes to the Museum for display, honoring his late father Dick, a certified BSA mechanic who passed away in the last year.Over 45 Bike Show awards were presented. Judges selected one American, one British, one European and one Japanese bike to receive the Hagerty Motorcycle Insurance Preservation Award. To qualify, motorcycles have to be correct, unrestored, original, with the exception of tires, grips, footpeg rubbers, perhaps control cables; paint, plating and upholstery factory original.
National Motorcycle Museum Information:The National Motorcycle Museum is open seven days a week, year around. Museum members are admitted free. Becoming a member is quick and easy on the Museum website.
Museum admission is only $10.00 except during special events. Children 12 and under are admitted free when accompanied by an adult.
The National Motorcycle Museum is a non-profit 501 (c)(3) corporation.
Plan your visit to the National Motorcycle Museum on the web at www.nationalmcmuseum.org
Thanks for taking a few minutes to review this news release. We hope it helps you bring the news of motorcycling to your readers.Again, feel free to contact me for additional photos, quotes or any form of information you may need in your work. We also invite you to visit any time, take in the National Motorcycle Museum “live” in Anamosa, Iowa.Sincerely,Mark MederskiSpecial Projects Director
Copyright 2016, National Motorcycle Museum. All mentioned brands are the property of their respective manufacturers.
Allstate Motorcycle CHOPPER STORY presented by J&P Cycles Exhibit