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Tuesday 14 March 2023

Mission King Of The Baggers 2023

Rispoli Wins KOTB Opener At Daytona

Seemingly everyone had some sort of issue to deal with in the opening round of the Mission King Of The Baggers series at Daytona International Speedway, but Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson's James Rispoli dealt with his better than the rest to take his first career victory in the class.

Rispoli was running second and giving chase to early leader Kyle Wyman when he made the save of his life and somehow stayed on board his Road Glide despite a seemingly endless and viscous tank slapper on the high banks. 

Once he got that under control, he was keeping the pressure on Wyman, when Wyman's H-D Screamin' Eagle Road Glide expired with five laps to go. From there it was a battle to the finish, with Rispoli and his teammate Hayden Gillim joined by the second factory Harley of Travis Wyman. 

The two Vance & Hines riders then got a scare when Travis Wyman's Road Glide suffered a mechanical failure on the banking. The fear of oil on the banking brought out the red flag and Rispoli had his first win in the bag, with Gillim second.

Defending Mission King Of The Baggers Champion Tyler O'Hara finished third on his Indian Motorcycle/Progressive/Mission Foods Indian Challenger despite having to start from the back row when the team failed to get him and his teammate Jeremy McWilliams out of the pit lane in time for the sighting lap.

The first of the Team Saddlemen Harley was ridden to fourth place by Cory West, who finished 13.1 seconds off the lead and well clear of McWilliams, who was just 1.4 seconds ahead of Baggers' rookie and former Superbike racer Jake Lewis.

In addition to the two factory Harleys, Bobby Fong was another knocked out of the race with mechanical problems on his Sac Mile/SDI Racing/Roland Sands/Indian Challenger.

Wyman Bounces Back To Win KOTB Race 2 At Daytona

H-D Screamin' Eagle's Kyle Wyman made up for the disappointment of failing to finish the first of the two Mission King Of The Baggers races with a dominating eight-second victory in the second.

Wyman's factory Harley-Davidson Road Glide coasted to a stop in Friday's first Baggers race, forcing the 2021 King Of The Baggers Champion to watch Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson's James Rispoli score his first career victory in the opening round of the championship.

And everyone paid the price for his disappointment as Wyman went on a tear on Saturday, leading every lap of the eight-lap race to beat Rispoli by 8.030 seconds. Third place went to Rispoli's teammate Hayden Gillim, a day after Gillim finished second. Team Saddlemen's Cory West finished fourth, with his teammate Jake Lewis rounding out the top five.

Defending Mission King Of The Baggers Champion Tyler O'Hara had an off-day, with the Indian Motorcycle/Progressive/Mission Foods-backed Californian running off in turn one and ending the race in 11th. O'Hara's teammate Jeremy McWilliams was also off the pace, finishing 11th after just losing out in a battle with Roland Sands Design/Indian Motorcycle's Kyle Ohnsorg.