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Lawrence Launches from Fifth Heat in Vegas

Reigning Flat Track Canada National Champion Doug Lawrence will aim to qualify through the fifth of sixth Heat races tonight at the 13th and final round of the Harley-Davidson GNC1 Flat Track Grand Nationals, held at the Arena in the Orleans Hotel in Las Vegas.  The sole Canadian in the 36 rider entry ran as high as 16th aboard his Town Moto backed-Honda CRF450R in the early practice sessions, but a fall in the final Qualifying dropped him down the order to 23rd overall.

Fastest Qualifier for tonight’s racing is Mike Rush on a Honda, the veteran lapping the tight oval at 10.23 seconds.  Rush will start from pole in the first heat, while next best lapper Henry Wiles (10.27) gets the pole for race two with his Honda, race three will be headed by third best Q rider Briar Bauman on a Honda, Robert Pearson will start from the inside in Heat four on a Yamaha YZF450F, the Lawrence heat will be headed by Suzuki RMZ 450 of Kayl Kolkman, while pole for the final heat belongs to the sixth best qualifier, reigning Champ Jared Mees on another Honda.

Lawrence turned a best lap at 10.62 seconds before he got out of shape in the second and last Q session, eventually tumbling into the padded wall that lines the tight, hockey arena-sized track.  The top 12 riders from the HEat and Semi races will take part in the final 2015 Dirt Track National.

“The track was getting rough, there was prep work right before our session, and I figured it would help, but I was wrong,” explained the uninjured Lawrence prior to the opening ceremonies.  “Yeah, I hit the wall, but it was no big deal.  Maybe it’s time to put on the ol’ chest protector!”

“I need to get back to the way I was riding (in the earlier sessions),” considered 30 year old Lawrence.  “I need to be a little more calculated, that’s my normal mode.  I’ll be in the middle of the row, it will be crazy on the first laps, so I need to get my elbows out.”

“The race is fun, the whole weekend is great (including tomorrow night’s Superprestigio of the Americas), but I wish there was a little time to enjoy it.  We didn’t really know what to expect with the track, they maybe over watered it, and now they’re trying to smooth it out as best they can.”

“As far as the race strategy goes, It is what it is, what I expected – you really need a good start, and you need to take advantage of your chances if they come, especially in the early laps.  If you get a chance, you just have to do it.”

“The race format is pretty specialized, there are a few guys who know how to race these little tracks, and then there is everyone else.  You’re really going to need to work the inside, right around the ring.  You need full commitment, look well ahead, and just try and find your comfort level.”      

 Sponsorship for the Lawrence Racing 2015 AMA Pro effort comes from John Briggs Motorsports, Town Moto, Brooklin Cycle Racing, Jon Castin, Triple J Racing, American Harley-Davidson, Arai, Troy Lee Design, SIDI boots, Motion Pro, West Coast Hot Shoes, Works Connection, Klotz, Saddlemen and JS Marketing.  

Friday, 20 November 2015 21:56 Published in News

Non Flat Trackers Test in Vegas

With the arena’s track preparation complete and the Airfence in place, non-Flat Track Superprestigio of the Americas competitors got a couple of hours of surface testing and practice on Thursday evening, November 19 at the Orleans Hotel in Las Vegas.

On Friday evening, November 20, the 13th and deciding round of the 2015 American Flat Track Championship takes place at the same venue, while the next night features the inaugural Yamaha-sponsored Superprestigio of The Americas. 

Both events take place on a custom built, indoor hockey rink-sized (about .10 of a mile in length) track at the Orleans Hotel and Casino.

Non flat track racers taking part in the discipline-crossing first ever North American Superprestigio event will be at a disadvantage, partly because they do not regularly compete on dirt ovals and mostly because they are not part of the AMA Pro National wrap-up on Friday night.  So a little test and tune was a welcome and much appreciated surprise.

With most of the top flat trackers watching from the sidelines, the non-oval group showed well, and demonstrated that the surface should be good for competition.  Track designer and Flat Track legend Chris Carr made big efforts to ensure that passing was possible, and the initial, non-competition outing on the Orleans oval showed promise.

Maybe the fastest, unofficially, of the Pros to try the track was Larry Pegram on the Foremost Insurance Honda single.  Out of work since the works Buell team dropped out of World Superbike early in 2015 due to issues with the parent company, former flat track star Pegram was in confident form.

Attracting the most attention was a charging Roger Lee Hayden aboard the Yoshimura Suzuki RMZ450, with most of the riders trying to follow every time Hayden took to the course for one of the many brief sessions.  Back in 2002, Hayden and his two brothers, Tommy and Nicky, swept the AMA Pro National Short Track podium in Springfield, Ill.

Top European was MotoGP ace and 2012 Moto2 World Champ Toni Elias of Spain, 32. A veteran of the Spanish Superprestigio that started the us vs them flat track spectacular craze, Elias looked quick and fairly consistent, shaking of a couple of minor tumbles on the stop-and-go layout.

Action for the Flat Track Experts starts on Friday at 3 PM local time, with two hours of timed practice.  After that, there will be Heat and Semi races for the GNC1 and GNC2 categories.  Canadian interest will focus on newly crowned Flat Track Canada Champ Doug Lawrence aboard the John Briggs Motorsports/Town Moto Honda. 

The Inside Motorcycles web site will feature coverage of the Lawrence effort both nights.

On hand to watch the test, Lawrence explained that he was “impressed with the track, they seem to have really done a good job preparing the surface – it has plenty of moisture, and that should help over a night.”

“They’re trying to make it so you can pass, race each other.  I don’t know if what we watched tonight will be what we see in the races tomorrow night, but right now those guys know more than we do.”     

Thursday, 19 November 2015 22:53 Published in News

Lawrence Readies for Vegas

Newly-crowned Flat Track Canada overall national No. 1 Doug Lawrence is very busy these days, preparing for the season-ending dirt track doubleheader next weekend in Las Vegas, Nevada. On Friday evening, November 20, the 13th and deciding round of the 2015 AMA Pro Flat Track Championship takes place, while the next night features the inaugural Yamaha-sponsored Superprestigio of the Americas.  Both events take place on a custom-built, indoor hockey rink-sized (listed at an optimistic .25 miles) track at the Orleans Hotel and Casino.

Inside Motorcycles will be on site in Vegas for Lawrence’s races, and provide exclusive web coverage focused on the Flat Track Canada champ.

Lawrence will compete aboard one of his Honda CRF450Rs, recently rebuilt by Doug Beattie.

“I’ve won a lot of Canadian nationals on this bike,” explained Lawrence shortly before leaving for Michigan and further testing and training on Sunday, November 15. “But now we’ve detuned it, trying to make it work for a tenth-of-a-mile track. Doug did a great job for me, he really knows these Hondas well now.”

Lawrence explained that everyone planning to compete in Las Vegas has been looking to ride at tracks small enough to simulate the Orleans set-up.

“Everyone has been building these little tracks, and I tested with (American champ) Jared Mees at a track he built on his property. Then I’m going to Scott Parker’s place in Michigan, Bryan Smith built a track there.  I think (retired multi-time national champ) Scott’s even going to ride with us!”

After his final test in Michigan, Lawrence will fly to California, before heading to Vegas for practice.

As far as the format for the event is concerned, with many short races close together leading to eliminations and the final, Lawrence says he is trying not to focus too much on the event’s structure.

“It doesn’t help to worry too much about the starts, but everyone knows how important that is on a short track.  The starts are huge,” laughs Lawrence.

“The trick is to ride assertive, not aggressive.  You really need to use your head, pick your battles, and don’t put yourself in a position where you are going to make a mistake. I guess you have to say that it comes down to luck.  The guys who get success in this type of event, they aren’t the fastest, but they really know how to position themselves.  It is important to qualify up front, the times will be really close, put yourself on pole, be in a position to control things from the front.

“The race formats are a little different from what we get usually, so it will shake down differently, but it will still be an issue if some guy kamikazes and takes down a bunch of people in his heat race.

“The racing will be way different from how things look in practice, we’ll be more upright, not so vulnerable, guarding our spot – maybe not as exciting (or sideways).  It really depends on the surface, can we ride it hard, but it will likely be inconsistent.  So protecting your spot, your position, will be a big factor.”

Lawrence places equal importance on the two events, but figures that Saturday’s Superprestigio will be the tougher event in terms of qualifying for the final race.

“Organizer Chris Carr has put me in with all the other flat trackers, and that class is full of heavy hitters – I’m really in the deep water, so in a way the math is worse on the second night. No one knows what will happen, and that should make it really entertaining.”            

Following the Vegas events, Lawrence will return to California for some bicycle training before heading to legendary MX venue Glen Helen Raceway for Red Bull’s 18th Day in the Dirt, with support from Troy Lee Designs Canada.

Sponsorship for the Lawrence Racing 2015 AMA Pro effort comes from John Briggs Motorsports, Town Moto, Brooklin Cycle Racing, Jon Castin, Triple J Racing, American Harley-Davidson, Arai, Troy Lee Design, SIDI boots, Motion Pro, West Coast Hot Shoes, Works Connection, Klotz, Saddlemen and JS Marketing.  

Saturday, 14 November 2015 14:21 Published in News

Flat Track Canada is Proud to Present the 2015 Champions.

@FlatTrackCanada • FROM FLAT TRACK CANADA: The overall Flat Track Canada Championship Title is awarded to Doug Lawrence, who successfully earned his first ever Canadian National Title. 

A big thank you goes to everyone who supported the series.  The contribution has reflected in the success and progression of the series.

A lot of these racers showed tremendous dedication to the race series, participating in very round on their road to win the championship. A great deal of appreciation goes to the effort of the riders and their families. 

2015 was a great successful season. It was the product of the hard work and dedication that amounted in the large amount of growth.  We see a bright future for the sport of Flat Track Racing, and predict 2016 a bigger, better season.
With the combined effort of everyone involved, Flat Track Canada will continue to grow and inspire all motorcycle enthusiast alike.

Thank you for a great season!

Open Expert - #73 Doug Lawrence

DTX Expert - #22 Tyler Seguin

Open Intermediate- #49 Brodie Buchan

DTX Intermediate - #49 Brodie Buchan

Open Novice - #91 Dustin Brown

DTX Novice - #91 Dustin Brown  

ATV Open - #305 Darcy Ryksen

Veteran - #44 Rob Churchill

Vintage - #85 Mark Fairfull

250 Novice - #24 Hunter Bauer

85cc - #24 Hunter Bauer

65cc - Branden Keys

50cc Chain - Easton Ventoso

50cc Shaft - Alyssa Armstrong

ATV youth - Maxwell Johannsen

From: Aaron Hesmer/ Flat Track Canada, President 



Thursday, 15 October 2015 15:32 Published in News

Flat Track in Walton Cancelled‏

@FlatTrackCanada • WALTON, Ontario. (July 31, 2015) - Walton Raceway and Flat Track Canada announce the cancelling of the Flat Track Canada race scheduled at Walton Raceway, August 15th, as part of the Parts Canada TransCan Canadian Motocross Grand National Championship.

Friday, 31 July 2015 15:13 Published in News

Points Chase Heating Up As Flat Track Canada Heads To Woodstock

@FlatTrackCanada  • (July 30, 2015)- It's now just after the midway point in the Flat Track Canada Championship Series and with a successful weekend at Thunderfest, international star Doug Lawrence takes the lead by only a three point margin over Tyler Seguin. Heading into Round 7 at the Woodstock Raceway in Woodstock, Ontario this weekend will feature Canada's best riders competing for the top spot.

Thursday, 30 July 2015 17:07 Published in News

Burford half-mile - Flat Track Canada

Wednesday, 03 June 2015 14:22 Published in Multimedia

Photo report: Challenges all around at Burford FTC national round

Round 2 of the Flat Track Canada Championship Series at the Burford Fairgrounds (Burford, ON) saw some intense action on a very challenging race surface. Even though the overall numbers were up from last year, the total number of Experts were way down compared to any other FTC event.

Wednesday, 03 June 2015 13:48 Published in Reports, Results & Points

Flat Track Canada school a great way to have fun and learn a new sport

Flat Track Canada, the increasingly popular race series that’s now in its third year, is doing wonders for the sport of flat track in Canada. For the second year in a row the organization is hosting a series of flat track schools, open to anyone with an interest in the sport. Very affordable and a ton of fun, I got to experience the day-long school first hand with more than a dozen other ‘students’ at the Paris Speedway 1/8-mile bullring in Paris, ON.

Tuesday, 26 May 2015 15:19 Published in Feature Stories

Opening Flat Track Canada round brings big turnout

Saturday, May 16th was the Flat Track Canada opener for the 2015 championship series and, despite threats of bad weather, racers from all over Ontario, Quebec, Michigan, New York and even Illinois came to ride the battle of the deep cushion. There's absolutely no way really to describe how it is to ride the deep, rutted and challenging surface of the half-mile track at the Paris Fairgrounds other than to say it's thrilling and very addictive.


A very promising 151 entries showed that there's been an increase in interest in the sport of flat track. We saw a surge in American racers as well as a number of newcomers, including a large number of youths and adults.


It seems to be a growing trend worldwide for road racers to take the stage in flat track racing since the influence from Marquez and Rossi. Last year, Canadian Superbike Champion Jodi Christie and Canadian Sport Bike Champion Kenny Reidmann competed in a couple of rounds of the FTC series. This year, 2014 CSBK Superbike runner-up Trevor Daley gave flat track a try at the Paris half-mile, joined by fellow national road racers Kris Garvie, Ross Milson and Tomas Casas. Daley showed a very impressive ride, taking a second and a first in his heats. In the Intermediate DTX final he finished 7th despite falling, and in the Open Intermediate final he pulled off a very impressive 4th place. As for the other road racers, Garvie placed 7th out of 17 in both Novice classes, with Casas finishing 8th in the Intermediates, pretty impressive with full fields.


A slew of other amateur road racers were there competing, giving the excuse that flat track is just too much fun without forking out a ton of money or committing a full weekend.


Kristopher Garvie

  Trevor Daley

Trevor Daley


The big news of the weekend was the absence of reining FTC Expert No. 1 plate holder and defending champion Don Taylor. Don's wife is pregnant and overdue on her birth, so he made a very difficult decision to miss out on the racing. That leaves a large opportunity for the championship to be up for grabs for 2015. In the Open Expert heat races, veterans Steve Beattie and Chris Evans battled like they were in their twenties, displaying the best racing and a top notch show. Beattie, racing the small 450 cc Honda and Evans on the 750 cc Harley Davidson, played tango on the race track, swooping in passes turn to turn. The main event was poised as the one to watch as Bugs Pearson from Illinois rode his Water's KTM 990 to a heat race victory over young fast GNC2 Daytona winner Justin Jones and 2014 FTC runner-up Tyler Seguin.

Steve Beattie


In the DTX main event it was New York's Justin Jones bringing home a comfortable win on his Yamaha YZF450 over Tyler Seguin on his KBR sponsored Honda CRF450.



Ty Seguin




The Open Expert final turned out to be one of Flat Track Canada's greatest races, and one of the best half-mile races in Canada. For lap after lap, corner after corner, fans were on their feet and cheering for the passing amongst the leading riders. First it was Tyler Seguin and Rob 'Bugs' Pearson with the early battle. After only a couple of laps Seguin faded fast and it looked like a hungry Chris Evans was warping from 1999 to put the pressure on Bugs. From that point on, the race was spectacular - Bugs on the 990 KTM banging and crashing into Evans' XR750 Harley, handlebar to handlebar. They went at it for about four laps and then, out of nowhere, Steve Beattie threw himself into the mix on his KBR Honda CRF450.


Bugs started to fade at about the halfway point of the 15-lap main with the fan favourite, Doug Lawrence, sitting back in about sixth position. The race became a constant battle between Evans and Beattie, with Beattie navigating his smaller, nimble bike quickly through the turns and Evans challenging back in the straightaways, showing off the big horsepower of the Harley. It was very neat to see, and typically you'll only get to enjoy this big bike/small bike kind of battle here in Canada.


As the last couple of laps to go it looked like Evans was in control of taking home the win, but as this point all eyes were on Doug Lawrence, who went from sixth place to second in only a matter of a couple laps. The pressure was on, and Chris knew Lawrence was coming; he had to hold on only a few more moments as the rough, demanding track had taken its toll on the 50-plus-year-old Evans. As the riders came out of the final corner to the checkered flag, Evans threw himself on his fuel tank, just using every last bit of energy to bring it home for the big win! It was another very well-deserved and respected win for Chris Evans.



Chris Evans


In the Intermediate class, Brodie Buchan came out with a big win in the DTX class with Braden Vallee finishing second despite having to start from the third row. In the Open Int, Buchan struggled with bike issues on his Kawasaki twin, leaving the door open for Vallee who edged out Justin Crumb for the victory. Frontrunner Shane Corbeil struggled while blowing his engines in the heat races. 


Braden Vallee (54)


ATVs had a good turnout, with Peter Grison taking home his first Flat Track Canada win on the Yamaha Banshee. Brandon Doucette built a Honda quad with a CBR600 F4i engine in it; he's still working out the bugs, but it showed it worked fairly well, finding a 5th place finish.




Another highlight was young superstar Dallas Daniels, who made the trek from Illinois. This 11-year-old showed he could run with the big guns and did an awesome job handling his bike to 3rd in the Novice class. Dallas also took home a win in the 250 class. Very promising performance and I'm sure we'll see him back again.


Dallas Daniels


In the full field of 85s, Chase Saathoff took home the win. Brian Newman from New York edged out Niagara Falls' Hunter Bauer for second place, while Paris' own Jimmy McCullough finished 4th.


Hunter Bauer


Flat Track Canada would like to thank everyone for coming out and supporting. Bike time thank you to all of the volunteers and a big thanks to our sponsors: Parts Canada, Harley Davidson, Suzuki, Diesel Equipment, Honda Canada, Dunlop, Kawasaki Canada, Sturgess Cycle, Grand River Powersports, Town Moto, Klotz, & Outlaw Productions.


We hope to see everyone this Saturday in Burford!

Results & Points click here

Friday, 22 May 2015 13:49 Published in Reports, Results & Points

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