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Flat Track  Race Report: Round #6 – Kawasaki, Harley & Harley

Flat Track Race Report: Round #6 – Kawasaki, Harley & Harley

Flat Track Du Quoin Mile Results

The roots of AMA Pro Flat Track are deeply entrenched in many places throughout the country, from areas legendary riders call home, to the sites of current and former events. Du Quoin, Ill., is one of those places where the flat track history books go back far, all the way to 1955.

On Saturday, July 4, the best flat track motorcycle racers in the world  raced the Magic Mile, marking the end of a nine-year hiatus. Harley-Davidson® Screamin’ Eagle® Wrecking Crew rider Jared Mees boosted his lead in the AMA Pro Harley-Davidson GNC1 presented by Vance & Hines series despite coming up inches short in a photo-finish end to a thrilling race at the Du Quoin Mile.

It took a last-lap pass and a photo finish, but Bryan Smith proved yet again to be the rider to beat on Mile circuits. Smith, piloting the No. 42 Crosley Radio Kawasaki, claimed the Du Quoin Mile victory on Independence Day Saturday night by less than a hundredth of a second over Jared Mees and Kenny Coolbeth.

Smith’s Flat Track Du Quoin Mile win is his third-straight Harley-Davidson GNC1 victory on a Mile course in 2015, and he’ll look to add a fourth next Saturday at the Indy Mile in Indianapolis.

See it on Fan Choice TV

See the race at FANSCHOICE.tv

    “It took everything I had on that last lap to outrun two of my best buddies,” said Smith referring to his last-second pass of Mees and Coolbeth. “I hung on tight and was fortunate to come away with the win by a quarter of an inch. Kenny checked out on the restart halfway through (the main event) and I knew I was going to have to ride harder than I had all season if I wanted to catch him. It was fun and nerve wracking at the same time.”

Until the checkered flag, Smith hadn’t led at any point during the 25-lap main event, and his three-straight wins on a Mile course have him sitting third in the Harley-Davidson GNC1 presented by Vance & Hines point standings after six rounds of AMA Pro Flat Track action.

After missing a shift on a restart and slipping to the back of the pack, Mees charged through the Flat Track Du Quoin Mile field on his Rogers Racing Las Vegas H-D/Blue Springs H-D Harley-Davidson® XR750 motorcycle to hunt down fellow Wrecking Crew rider Kenny Coolbeth and Bryan Smith. The trio of riders crossed the finish line together, with Smith winning by less than an inch and Coolbeth just 0.013 seconds back in third place on the Zanotti Racing Harley-Davidson® XR750.

    “I missed a shift and fell way back, but my Harley had the power to take me back to the front,” said Mees, the defending Grand National champion. “Coolbeth had checked out with his Harley on the restart but I finally caught him. On the last lap I thought we’d dropped Smith, so when he came up beside me at the finish I was kind of surprised. It came down to a quarter inch. What a great race for flat track fans, and I think the most fun I’ve ever had on a race track.”

After six of 16 races on the AMA Pro Harley-Davidson GNC1 schedule, the top five in the standings is separated by just 20 points. Mees is in first with 96 points and increased his lead over Sammy Halbert from three to eight points. Halbert is second with 88 points, followed by Smith and Coolbeth in a tie with 86 points, and Harley-Davidson® Screamin’ Eagle® Factory Team rider Brad Baker in fifth place with 76 points.
 

Harley-Davidson GNC1 presented by Vance & Hines Flat Track Du Quoin Mile top five results:

    1. Bryan Smith (Kawasaki) wins the Flat Track Du Quoin Mile
    2. Jared Mees (Harley-Davidson)
    3. Kenny Coolbeth (Harley-Davidson)
    4. Johnny Lewis (Ducati)
    5. Sammy Halbert (Kawasaki)

The Harley-Davidson Wrecking Crew riders will be back on the track when the AMA Pro Harley-Davidson GNC1 presented by Vance & Hines series resumes July 11 on the Indy Mile at the Indiana State Fairgrounds.

Dr. Jack Tequila has two passions, motorcycles and tequila. He resides on a sailboat in the port city Wilmington, NC.From time to time, Dr. Jack will throw a few tidbits and observations our way.

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