Jared Mees (9) edged title rival Bryan Smith (42) for his second AMA Pro Grand National win of the season. Jared Mees (9) edged title rival Bryan Smith (42) for his second AMA Pro Grand National win of the season. Photo by Dave Hoenig / courtesy AMA Pro Racing

Late charge takes Mees to victory

Written by  on Monday, 21 July 2014 10:58

ELMA, Wash. - Sunday's AMA Pro Flat Track Grand National Championship main event at Grays Harbor Raceway featured an adrenaline-charged showdown between several of the world's most prominent riders, and in the end it was Jared Mees who took home the coveted checkered flag, making it his second victory of the 2014 season, and his 15th career GNC win.

Mees started all the way back in seventh on the grid and proved yet again why patience is vital to his success. It wasn't until lap 20 when the Clio, Mich. product, aboard his Rogers Racing Harley-Davidson, passed Bryan Smith on the front stretch and eventually went onto earn the victory.

The battle between Mees and Smith has been one of epic proportions so far this season, as the two have been virtually neck and neck in four of the last five main events. Though Smith took a back seat to Mees this go-around, fans shouldn't be surprised if the Flint, Mich., product, aboard his Villa-Esparza/Crosley Radio Kawasaki, gets back in the winner's circle next weekend when the series heads to Sacramento.

Closing out the podium with a third place finish was ‘Mr. Consistent’ himself - Jake Johnson, aboard his Ramspur Winery Ducati. The Coatesville, Pa., native earned his fifth top five finish of the year and now sits third in the points. After a couple of years without the strongest results, the two-time Grand National Champion has proved time and time again this season that he is for real in 2014, and his performance Sunday didn't do anything to indicate otherwise.

Fourth place finishes are never anything to lose sleep over, but it certainly couldn't have been the kind of homecoming performance that Sammy Halbert was hoping for. The Graham, Wash., native seemed to have all of his ducks in a row throughout the course of the day. He won his heat race and the Dash for Cash. He then got out to a monstrous lead for the first half of Sunday's main event before giving it all away on lap nine. Halbert, aboard his South East Harley-Davidson, slipped all the way back to fourth following his forfeiture of the lead, and the 2009 Grand National Champion never could find his rhythm again, as that's exactly where he would finish.

Kenny Coolbeth started from fifth on the grid and that's eventually where he ended up by the race's conclusion. The Morris, Conn., product, mounted on his Zanotti Racing Harley-Davidson, sits fourth in the points standings and is poised for a championship run in the coming weeks.

Back in May, Jarod Vanderkooi ousted AMA Pro Twins competition for his first professional win. On Sunday, the Mt. Gilead, Ohio, product proved he could also achieve victory aboard a 450cc machine when he rode his Johnny's Vintage Motorcycle Honda to his first AMA Pro Flat Track Pro Singles checkered flag.

Vanderkooi started from fourth on the grid to seal the victory by just under one full second, and with the win, now sits eighth in points.

Coming in second place was Davis Fisher. Fisher, aboard his T.J. Burnett Farms Honda, started from fifth to earn his fifth consecutive podium and is now tied with Kyle Johnson for first in the point standings.

Ryan Wells, aboard his KTM, closed out the podium with a third place finish and now sits just one point behind Johnson and Fisher in the standings.

The stars of AMA Pro Flat Track will head to Sacramento, Calif., for the Sacramento Mile at the Cal Expo on July 26.

Footage of the Grays Harbor Half-Mile will be available to view on AMA Pro Racing's YouTube portal at www.youtube.com/amaprovids in the coming days.

GNC Race Results

1

Jared Mees

Rogers Racing,Las Vegas HD, Blue Springs...

Harley-Davidson

25 Laps

2

Bryan Smith

Villa-Esparza Crosley Radios Howerton Products ...

Kawasaki EX650

0.369

3

Jake Johnson

Ramspur Winery,Lloyd Bros Motorsports, Parkinson...

Harley-Davidson

1.725

4

Sammy Halbert

South East H-D,Specialty Fabrications,Whites...

Harley-Davidson

3.742

5

Kenny Coolbeth, Jr.

Zanotti Racing/Moroneys H-D,Burt Ives Honda, ...

Harley-Davidson

3.864

6

Brad Baker

Harley-Davidson Motor Company, Screamin Eagle...

Harley-Davidson

4.054

7

Stevie Bonsey

Zanotti Racing,Classic Harley-Davidson,Top1,K&N...

Harley-Davidson

5.210

8

Robert Pearson

Weirbach Racing

Kawasaki EX650

8.680

9

Jake Shoemaker

Montgomeryville Cycle Center, Greg Vietri, Penske...

Kawasaki EX650

9.396

10

Doug Lawrence

Lawrence Racing,Jon Castin Racing,Wieblers...

Harley-Davidson

9.760

11

Wyatt Maguire

Kirkland Racing,Urban Custom bikes,Motorcycle...

Suzuki SV650

12.249

12

Henry Wiles

Dons Kawasaki,DPC Racing,EA Racing,Eddie...

Kawasaki EX650

12.586

13

Brandon Robinson

USC Kawasaki,Hart Racing,Hot Shot,Stevens...

Kawasaki EX650

12.737

14

Jethro Halbert

Drew Massa trans. Knucklehead racing, Doug...

Kawasaki EX650

12.905

15

Cory Texter

Racing Unlimited,McElroy Packing,Invisible...

Kawasaki EX650

13.004

16

Mikey Martin

Bonneville Performance,Factory Triumph...

Triumph Bonneville

13.254

17

Scooter Vernon

Walrath Racing, Hovey Helmholz Racing, Teasdale...

Kawasaki EX650

13.690

18

Chad Cose

ERT,Rod Lake,Nazzisi Racing,Saddlemen,Reynolds...

Kawasaki EX650

24 Laps

19

Briar Bauman

Dodge Brothers, Saddlemen Seats, Harley Davidson,...

Harley-Davidson

15 Laps

Race Time: 7:29.356
Margin of Victory: 0.369
Best Race Lap: Jared Mees (0:18.320)

GNC Point Standings (Top 25)

1

Jared Mees

127

2

Bryan Smith

122

3

Jake Johnson

121

4

Kenny Coolbeth, Jr.

114

5

Sammy Halbert

108

6

Brandon Robinson

95

7

Henry Wiles

75

8

Stevie Bonsey

72

9

Brad Baker

69

10

Briar Bauman

53

11

Jake Shoemaker

47

12

Robert Pearson

44

13

Doug Lawrence

32

14

Mike Rush

25

15

Jake Constantine

25

16

Chad Cose

25

17

Mikey Martin

20

18

Jethro Halbert

19

19

Cory Texter

18

20

DUSTIN Crow

17

21

Jeffrey Carver Jr.

17

22

Matt Weidman

15

23

Danny Koelsch

15

24

Wyatt Maguire

13

25

Nichole Mees

11

--From AMA Pro Racing

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John Hopkins

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