topbanner ad

Monday 11 October 2021

Progressive AFT Finale

Mees Crowned 2021 Grand National Champion

At a dramatic Progressive AFT Finale at the Charlotte Motor Speedway (Concord, N.C., October 9th), Jared Mees' second place in the SuperTwins Main Event (Briar Bauman having crashed out) was enough to secure him a sixth Grand National Championship title.

Mission SuperTwins presented by S&S Cycle
In the race itself, the two time and defending Champion Briar Bauman (No. 1 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750) was in the hunt for a third consecutive title, but the spectacular consequences of clipping a hay bale saw him and Sammy Halbert (No. 69 Coolbeth-Nila Racing Indian FTR750) out of the race. Bauman did try to go again with his reserve bike, but to no avail.

From the forced restart, Mees (No. 9 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750) eventually found himself locked in a final lap tussle with JD Beach (No. 95 Estenson Racing Yamaha MT-07 DT) which Davis Fisher (No. 67 BMC Racing/Dick Wall 60 Indian FTR750) exploited to claim his maiden premier class victory, stealing the win from Mees by 0.114 seconds, with Beach third.
The race completed a two-year climb back to the pinnacle of Flat Track racing for Mees, who last won the title in 2018 and further added to his 2012, '14, '15 and '17 wins for a career tally of six premier Flat Track class titles so far; plus having the 2009 and 2011 GNC1 Twins Championships and the 2012 GNC1 Singles Championship to his name. After the race Mees said: "I hand it to Briar [Bauman]. He’s definitely one of the toughest competitors - if not the toughest competitor - I’ve ever dealt with."
Jarod Vanderkooi (No. 20 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750) took fourth, with Brandon Robinson (No. 44 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750) completing the top five.
Mees took the title by 15 points from Bauman, with Brandon Robinson third, Jarod Vanderkooi fourth and JD Beach fifth.

AFT Singles
Despite finishing the race in sixth, Dallas Daniels (No. 1 Estenson Racing Yamaha YZ450F) secured a second consecutive title to become the first-ever back-to-back champion in the class. His 20-point Championship gap ahead second ranked Max Whale (No. 18 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 450 SX-FFE) meant that the only way he would relinquish his #1 plate was if Whale won and Daniels finished lower than 13th. Whale did win, but Daniels did enough, having cautiously stayed clear of the fray in the early rounds.
Kody Kopp (No. 143 Smartop/Jones Honda/Latus Motors CRF450R) was second, Trent Lowe (No. 48 WBR/Suzuki Motor of America RM-Z450) pulled off a spectacular late strike to ace Honda teammates Cole Zabala (No. 51 American Honda/Progressive Insurance CRF450R) for third, with Trevor Brunner (No. 21 American Honda/Progressive Insurance CRF450R) fifth.

AFT Production Twins presented by Vance & Hines
The late-season transition of Jesse Janisch (No. 96 Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson XG750R) from the couch to AFT Production Twins presented by Vance & Hines podium contention ended on the top step of the box.
Once regarded primarily as a 450 cc TT ace, Janisch proved he more than belonged on a twin after being drafted to sub for the injured Dalton Gauthier (No. 79 D&D Cycles/Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson XG750R). With finishes of second, third and fourth to his name in limited duty, Janisch put the cherry on top with a narrow victory in the finale over Ben Lowe (No. 25 Vance & Hines/Mission Roof Systems Harley-Davidson XG750R).
With the class crown already decided in favor of Cory Texter (No. 65 G&G Racing/Yamaha Racing MT-07), Chad Cose (No. 49 Vance & Hines/Ranger/Roof Systems Harley-Davidson XG750R) and Dan Bromley (No. 62 Memphis Shades/Vinson Construction Yamaha MT-07) came into Charlotte set to decide the championship runner-up between them.
Cose was the race’s early leader and Bromley joined Cose, Janisch and Lowe in a mid-race tilt for first place. Cose ultimately faded to seventh while Bromley rounded out the podium, but the differential still wasn’t quite enough for Bromley to catch Cose for runner-up honors.
Johnny Lewis (No. 10 Moto Anatomy X Powered by Royal Enfield Twins FT) hustled the Royal Enfield to fourth. Meanwhile, class champ Texter added one final top five to a championship-winning season that tallied up seven wins, 11 podiums and 13 top-five spots in 16 races.

Super Hooligans
A Super Hooligans race at the Honda Charlotte Motor Speedway Half-Mile saw KTM 790s 'Duking' it out with Harley Sportsters and 1200s, Indians and a couple of Scramblers - a Ducati and a Triumph.
The win was taken by Scooter Vernon (KTM 790 Duke), with Kevin Varnes second (H-D Sportster), Andrew DiBrino third (KTM 790 Duke), Scott Baker fourth (H-D Sportster) and Robert Lewis fifth (H-D Sportster).

2021 Progressive American Flat Track Points Standings
Mission AFT SuperTwins

 AFT Production Twins

AFT Singles