Kenny Coolbeth, Jr. may have returned to the track officially at the 2012 Lucas Oil Indy Mile as shown on August 18, but he truly returned to his winning form last night at round 13 of the 2012 AMA Pro Flat Track Harley-Davidson Insurance Grand National Championship presented by Motorcycle-Superstore.com season at the Knoxville Half-Mile in winning his first race of the season and first since the Hagerstown Half-Mile in July '11.
The 3-Time AMA Grand National Twins Champion stalked and prodded early leader Jared Mees and Jake Johnson and took advantage of the superior mount he had in the #2 Harley-Davidson Motor Co/Screamin' Eagle/Fox/Arai Helmets-sponsored XR750 and of Mees' misfortunes. Mees' #9 broke a little over half-way into the event and he was left stranded on the back straight as the field and his overall points lead scooted away. The King of Cool took over on the 5th lap of the National main and led the remaining go-rounds to take the win over Johnson by just over .5 second. Sammy Halbert rounded out the podium by finishing just shy of 9 seconds in arrears on his South East H-D XR, with Rob Pearson on the Eaken Racing Kawasaki coming home in 4th-place and Bryan Smith rounding out the top-5 on his Moroney's FastHog.com XR750.
With Mees' 18th-place finish coupled with Johnson's 2nd-place and Sammy Halbert's 3rd-place last night at the Sprint Car Capital of the World, what was once a 21-point lead shrunk massively to just 11 points (207 points), with Halbert in 2nd and Johnson still in 3rd (196 each) but losing the tie-breaker due to not having won a main event yet this season.
The tide has thusly turned in the chase for the 2012 AMA Grand National Championship with 2-Time and defending GNC Jersey Jake Johnson and Slammin' Sammy sitting in the catbird seat ready to pounce with five rounds left on the year. The series heads to Springfield for the postponed rounds 11 & 12 next weekend for the Springfield Short Track on Saturday, September 15 and the Springfield Mile II set for Sunday, September 16.
Shayna Texter on the #25A DFW Honda/RLT Racing/McElroy Packaging/Herr's-sponsored Honda CRF450R (shown above at the Lima Half-Mile on June 30, 2012) walked away with the win again last night at the Knoxville Half-Mile round of the 2012 AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com Pro Singles Championship Series, winning by just over 1 second at the Iowa round. The Pennsylvania resident won her first-ever Pro Singles final last season at Knoxville and showed the crowd again this year she definitely has the place dialed in.
A big congrats to both Kenny and Shayna for their outstanding efforts last night in the Hawkeye State. Great job!
You can check out the press release below courtesy of AMA Pro Flat Track, after you check out some of the great shots of the night from Ken Kerr of Kerr Graphix.
You can see more of Ken's great work here as well, and a big thanks to KK for the pics:
Doug Lawrence #73, Brad Baker #12, Brandon Robinson #44, Jake Johnson #1, Evan Baer #64A, Jethro Halbert #69, Kenny Coolbeth, Jr. #2 and Jared Mees #9 get the ball rolling in the 25-lap National main at the Sprint Car Capital of the World during the Knoxville Half-Mile last night in Iowa.
Ken Kerr from Kerr Graphix made the trip up from his home in Kansas and submitted this shot from last night's thrilling race. Thanks Ken, U Da Man!
Kenny Coolbeth, Jr. #2 sailed home to his first win of the season last night at the Knoxville Half-Mile. Photo courtesy of Ken Kerr/Kerr Graphix.
Shayna Texter again came out over the rest of the field in the AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com Pro Singles Championship Series main event as she won for the second year in-a-row at the Knoxville Half-Mile. Photo courtesy of Ken Kerr/Kerr Graphix.
Kenny Coolbeth, Jr. on the #2 Harley-Davidson Motor Company factory XR750 took his first win of the season last night at the Knoxville, IA. half-mile. AMA Pro Flat Track photo by Dave Hoenig.
AMA Pro Racing is the premier professional motorcycle racing organization in North America, operating a full schedule of events and championships for a variety of motorcycle disciplines. Learn more about AMA Pro Racing at www.amaproracing.com.
For additional information contact:
AMA Pro Racing Communications, (386) 492-1014, firstname.lastname@example.org