American Flat Track Twins At The Illinois State Fairgrounds. Bryan Smith Pulled Off A 3rd Successive Mile Miracle Aboard His Indian Scout FTR750.

The victory was the defending Grand National Champion’s fourth race win in a row overall, making him just the fifth rider in series history to accomplish that feat.

It certainly did not come easily on Saturday afternoon. Smith hoped to make an escape at the start, building up more than a half-second advantage early on before rival Jared Mees (No. 9 Indian Motorcycle Rogers Racing Scout FTR750) slowly reeled him back in. Soon enough, the third member of the Indian Wrecking Crew, Brad Baker on the No. 6 Indian Motorcycle Racing backed by Allstate Scout FTR750, followed suit.

The next man destined to join the fight up front looked to be Springfield master Kenny Coolbeth (No. 2 Harley-Davidson Factory Flat Track Team XG750R). The Main Event was shaping up to be a significant uptick in form for the entire works Harley-Davidson crew with all three riders battling in strong position, led by Coolbeth, who was sixth and closing with the laps winding down.
Unfortunately, a freak incident between Coolbeth and teammates Jake Johnson (No. 5 Harley-Davidson Factory Flat Track Team XG750R) and Brandon Robinson (No. 44 Harley-Davidson Factory Flat Track Team XG750R) dashed the hopes for the Factory trio. A red flag then flew, setting the stage for a six-lap shootout for victory.

Once the race was back underway, Halbert continued to demonstrate race-changing pace and led as the pack took the white flag. Title hopeful Mees dove underneath to slot into first as they entered Turn 1 and held the advantage coming back onto the front straight.  
However, he found himself outmaneuvered yet again by Smith, who went around the outside of Halbert on the backstraight and then rocketed off Turn 4 just behind Mees in the decisive run to the stripe.
Smith, Mees, and Halbert took the checkered flag practically three abreast, with the photo finish giving Smith the nod by 0.005 of a second over Mees. Halbert, meanwhile, snapped the run of Indian 1-2-3s in third position, just another 0.039 seconds back. (Photo @ AFT/Brian J. Nelson)

5 Responses to “American Flat Track Twins At The Illinois State Fairgrounds. Bryan Smith Pulled Off A 3rd Successive Mile Miracle Aboard His Indian Scout FTR750.”

  1. 1 Junman May 31st, 2017 at 8:30 am

    Greatest show on earth for motorcycle race fans.

  2. 2 fuji May 31st, 2017 at 3:10 pm

    Interesting how it becomes a war between Indian and Harley Davidson . why!

    No mention of Sammy Halbert riding a “Yamaha” from back in the pack to the front and setting the fastest lap time. The fans came to their feet when when Sammy Halbert went to the lead.

    Davis fisher { X 2016 Harley factory rider] on a Kawasaki who was hooked onto the pack in fourth place until the red flag. The second year AFT TWINS rider found himself backing away from the leaders in the turns for lack of experience at 130 MPH in a narrow groove. He finished fifth. The closest Harley was around 9th , Johnny Lewis on an XR 750 and was the only top ten Harley.

    Speculation is that if Smith were on his Kawasaki the outcome would have been the same but that’s why they race. Cubic dollars put him on the Indian in an attempt by Indian to eliminate the fastest Mile bike. Good move by Indian and I pull for their success.

    This mile was by far one of the best races in recent history.

  3. 3 Hillbilly Jim Jun 1st, 2017 at 10:23 am

    I had hoped this would lead to a boost in sales but have yet to see it. Then again it may be because nothing even close to what they are racing is available for the general street riding public. Sort of reminds one of those two door rear wheel drive Chevys on NASCAR tracks.

  4. 4 Coffeebeans Jun 5th, 2017 at 9:20 am

    The Indians were running noticeably slower this week, and Mees won in spite of having only one gear. He lost his shifter somewhere in the first half of the race.
    After the race, all three Indian riders were discussing the changes in setup, and that they were not feeling it this week. The Indian teams nave two weeks to figure out what went sideways, and adjust.

    Sammy Halbert is obviously going to give them a race every week for the rest of the season.

    Jury is still out on the XG750…although they did seem to be running much faster this week. I’m betting HD and Vance and Hines are literally pouring money into the program. Before the season, they said they weren’t worried about the Indians. Oops.

  5. 5 Coffeebeans Jun 5th, 2017 at 9:30 am

    Dang…just realized this was from last week.

Comments are currently closed.
Cyril Huze