DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Round 1 of AMA Pro Flat Track heated up quickly on a chilly night on Thursday at DAYTONA Flat Track. Briar Bauman (Rod Lake Racing/Honda) took it the distance as he started on the pole and finished atop the podium. Bauman’s 1.951-second victory over runner-up finisher Sammy Halbert (Vans Yamaha/Yamaha) is the first Grand National win of his career.
“I don’t usually tighten up during a race but when I saw those halfway flags I definitely knew I had a chance to win and felt myself tense up a little bit,” said Bauman. “I’m just glad I could hold on for the full 25 laps and get some points. That’s what it’s all about at Daytona is to work on points. To make it all 25 and earn the win just feels awesome.”
Kenny Coolbeth, Jr. (Zanotti Racing/Honda) earned the holeshot but caught a bad break when two riders went down in the back of the pack and caused the red flags to fly. After the restart, Coolbeth wasn’t as lucky as he failed to reclaim the lead for the remainder of the race, eventually crashing and finishing 17th.
Bauman took the holeshot after the restart and did nothing but increase his lead the rest of the way.
Coming in second-place was Halbert. The Dash for Cash winner had an outstanding night on the track and the Graham, Wash. product looks poised for a tremendous bounce-back year in 2014.
Brandon Robinson (USC Kawasaki/Kawasaki) arguably made the best use of his restart card Thursday night. The Oxford, Penn. native started 11th on the grid before crawling his way to a third-place finish. Mike Rush (Cascioll Rush Racing/Honda) and 2012 Grand National Champion Jared Mees (Montgomeryville Cycle/Honda) closed out the top five.
In AMA Pro Singles action, Ryan Wells (KTM/KTM) came out hot right from the beginning, earning the holeshot after starting from fourth on the grid. Wells continued to build on his lead with every lap that passed and eventually the Albion, N.Y. product went on to win the race by over three full seconds.
“The first day at Daytona I usually struggle quite a bit so to come out here and get the win is huge for me,” said Wells. “I knew I had to have a good start and that I would be forced to make very few mistakes if I wanted to win. I’m just glad I was able to do that and it paid off. Hopefully I’ll be back up here tomorrow night; the goal is to get the sweep.”
Coming in second-place was Justin Jones (Jones Racing/Honda). While Jones never really threatened Wells’ lead, he solidified his runner up finish early on with a 1.203-second gap between him and third-place finisher Brandon Wilhelm (Wilhelm Racing/Honda). Rodney Spencer, Jr. (GP Sports/Honda) and Bronson Bauman (Rod Lake Racing/Honda) closed out the top five.
Round 2 of AMA Pro Flat Track at DAYTONA Flat Track is scheduled to commence Friday night, with live streaming of practice and qualifying sessions set to begin as early as 3:30 p.m. ET and opening ceremonies set to begin at 7:30 p.m. ET. Fans can catch all of the live streaming coverage at FansChoice.tv.
1 14 Briar Bauman Rod Lake Racing,Specialty Fabrication,Drew-Massa… Honda CRF450R 25 Laps WINNER 0:18.423 24
2 7 Sammy Halbert Vans Yamaha,Fredericktown Yamaha,Millennium… Yamaha YZ 450F 1.951 1.951 0:18.544 24
3 44 Brandon Robinson USC Kawasaki,James Hart,Hot Shot Motorworks,James… Kawasaki KX450F 2.504 0.553 0:18.419 16
4 54 Mike Rush Cascioll Rush Racing, Machete Energy, Race Tech,… Honda CRF450R 3.488 0.984 0:18.526 15
5 9 Jared Mees Montgomeryville Cycle,National Cycle,Rogers… Honda CRF450R 4.226 0.737 0:18.538 14
6 17 Henry Wiles Kawasaki 450 Sponsored by Don’s Kawasaki, DPC… Kawasaki KX450F 4.652 0.425 0:18.335 13
7 20 Matt Weidman Scotts Powersports, Silkolene, Moose Racing, Poppy… Honda CRF450R 6.546 1.894 0:18.573 14
8 49 Chad Cose ERT,Rod Lake,Nazzisi Racing,Saddlemen,Reynolds… Honda CRF450R 7.373 0.826 0:18.597 14
9 80 Stevie Bonsey Zanotti Racing,Alpinestars,Arai,Motion Pro,Drew… Honda CRF450R 7.821 0.448 0:18.561 10
10 5 Jake Johnson Ramspur Winery,Lloyd Bros Motorsports, Parkinson… Honda CRF450R 8.048 0.226 0:18.369 9
11 21U Jay Maloney MRT, Avila Racing, Speed and Strength , Wiseco… Honda CRF450R 10.870 2.822 0:18.553 8
12 73 Doug Lawrence LAWRENCE RACING, TOWN MOTO, JOHN BRIGGS… Honda CRF450R 12.453 1.583 0:18.733 7
13 55 Jake Shoemaker Memphis Shades, Yamaha Motor Corp, … Yamaha YZ 450F 12.976 0.522 0:18.672 6
14 65 Cory Texter McElroy Packaging,Herr’s,Invisible Glass,Lancaster… Honda CRF450R 13.086 0.110 0:18.559 5
16 27 Robert Pearson Weirbach Racing,General… Honda CRF450R 14.265 0.218 0:18.770 4
17 2 Kenny Coolbeth, Jr. Zanotti Racing,Burt Ives Honda,Moroneys HD,Pint… Honda CRF450R 24 Laps 1 Lap 0:18.300 6
18 98 Kayl Kolkman Southland Racing,Arbor,Rac Tech,Troy Lee… Suzuki RMZ 450 9 Laps 15 Laps 0:19.466 1
19 1 Brad Baker FMC Dyno Center,Sefnco Com,Specialty Fab Inc,FMC… KTM 450 SX-F -no times- -no times- -no times-
Race Time: 7:28.539
Margin of Victory: 1.951
Best Race Lap: Kenny Coolbeth, Jr. (0:18.300)
–From AMA Pro Racing