Sunday, July 28, 2013

Bryan Smith Makes it 3-Straight & Shayna Texter Takes 5th Overall Win in AMA Pro Flat Track presented by J&P Cycles Grand National Championship Round 5 at the Sacramento Mile

Bryan Smith took the #42 Crosley Radio/Howerton Motorsports Kawasaki to the win last night at the Miller Lite Sacramento Mile, for his 3rd win-in-a-row at the Cal Expo Fairgrounds-hosted event in Northern California.

Round 5 of the 2013 AMA Pro Flat Track presented by J&P Cycles Grand National Championship season didn't disappoint as the action was hot and heavy all evening, but the 25-lap National main was a barn burner all around that saw Flyin' Bryan lead all but four laps on the evening in spite of reportedly having his tires go off just past the halfway point of the night.

Smith got his usual monster start to lead the first 14 laps before those tire issues caused him to drop back to 5th for a short time in the National main, and giving the lead at the stripe to Mees for laps 15-18, before regrouping to take it on home in front of the packed house at the Bob Bellino/Circle Bell Motorsports-promoted event.

Smith's only other error on the night came with just two to go when he caught his front wheel on Jared Mees' rear wheel in between turns 1 and 2, but regrouping quickly to re-grab the point by the time they returned to the stripe and the white flag and holding it to the end.

Jared Mees, in his return to racing after suffering a broken arm in mid-June during a regional event, wore a special cast/brace on his arm and took his Kenny Tolbert-tuned #1 Rogers Racing XR750 to the 2nd-place spot, finishing just .083 seconds behind the ultra-strong Howerton Kawi-mounted winner, and early-season points leader Brandon Robinson had another great showing in staying with the lead pack all night and finishing in the 3rd-place spot on his #44 TJ Burnett Farms Kawasaki, just .034 seconds back from 2012 AMA Grand National Champion Mees.

Brad Baker on the #12 Dodge Brothers Racing XR put in another super effort to keep his lead in the 2013 point standings intact.  Starting from the 3rd row, The Bullet had worked his way into the lead pack of five riders just four laps into the main, showing his strong points entering turn one and into and out of turn 2 all evening, but just couldn't hold that at the line against the likes of Mees or Smith at the line, eventually finishing in the 4th-place slot.  On a couple of laps The Bullet actually got around just going into turn one and also showed some pretty strong HP coming from his Dodge Brothers mount on the back straight.

Baker had a great run, though, that sees him still leading the points heading to the Castle Rock TT next weekend, 92-77 over Robinson, with Smith another six points back in the 3rd spot overall.

Robinson looked great all evening in keeping it in the lead bunch while running several times in the 2nd spot coming to the stripe before settling down and keeping it with the lead pack, after losing a motor in practice and being forced to race a back-up machine throughout the evening.  Another strong showing by the TJ Burnett Farms/James Hart Racing crew that helped them to gain five points lost after the Hagerstown get-off that saw BRob44 end up in the 17th-place position three weeks ago.

Sammy Halbert had another solid performance on his #7 Flat Track Live XR, coming home in the 5th-place position just .223 seconds behind winner Smith.  Halbert is definitely back to speed after his off-season injuries forced him to sit out the Daytona opening rounds, and sits in the 6th-place spot in the overall standings, with Jake Johnson (6th-place at Sacto) and Henry Wiles (9th-place) just ahead of him in the standings.

Kudos all around go to AMA Pro Flat Track, Circle Bell and Will Fulford of The Fast and for what was some stellar live streaming coverage of the event last night at the Sacramento Mile.  Some great camera work and another solid evening of announcing from the AMA Pro Flat Track announcing team of Scottie Duebler and Barry Boone kept everyone glued to the coverage all evening.  If there were any faults whatsoever in the overall coverage it was not being able to hear the roar of The Rolling Thunder Show during the main from the announcing coming from the booth-something I am sure they will get worked out down the road. 

In the shot above, Bryan Smith, Jake Johnson and Jared Mees laugh it up on the podium after the Dash for Cash event at the Springfield Mile I on May 27, 2012.  Smith had just taken his first 'official' points-paying win at the Illinois State Fairgrounds for what was his first-ever ride for the #42 Crosley Radio/Howerton Motorsports Kawasaki team.

Shayna Texter took her fifth-overall win in the AMA Pro J&P Cycles Pro Singles Championship last night at Sacramento.  After winning last year's event at Sacramento to go along with her two wins at the Knoxville Half-Mile in 2011 and 2012 and win in Tucson last October, the diminutive young lady from Pennsylvania took the win last night with an explanation point after falling back to 6th-place early in the Pro Singles main, only to regroup and take home her first-ever win for her new Crosley Radio/Howerton Motorsports team on her #25A Honda CRF450R. 

Shayna is shown getting ready to mount up for heat race #1 at the Springfield Mile on May 27, 2012 along with her #25A RLT Racing Honda team.

As mentioned, the streaming coverage from last night was a great effort all-around, and those that brought the coverage to the fans should be congratulated for a fine effort. 

You can check out the 25-lap Grand National main event here on Ustream.  It is WELL worth your time to watch if you haven't done so yet!

Here is the link to the complete official results from round 5 last night thanks to AMA Pro Flat Track.

Results from the Grand National main at the Sacto Mile are here.

Results from the Pro Singles main last night can be found here.

Overall point standings heading to the Castle Rock TT on Saturday, August 3 are here.

Cycle News' Larry Lawrence filed this race report from last night's round 5 of the 2013 AMA Pro Flat Track presented by J&P Cycles Grand National Championship season.

Miriam Deitcher, who provides many of us with some great coverage from the races on her Facebook page Flat Track Live, put together this great highlight video from last night.

Here's the link to AMA Pro Flat Track official photographer Dave Hoenig's shots from the Sacramento Mile.

You can check out the press release below from AMA Pro Flat Track as we get ready to see the series head to the Pacific Northwest for another great event on the season, the Castle Rock TT, this coming Saturday.

Smith, Texter Repeat at Sacramento Mile for Round 5 of AMA Pro Flat Track presented by J&P Cycles

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (July 28, 2013) - Saturday night's AMA Pro Flat Track presented by J&P Cycles Grand National Expert main event was one for the ages as Crosley Radio's Bryan Smith (Flint, Mich.) earned his third consecutive Sacramento Mile victory at the Cal Expo. The intensity of Saturday night's action was almost indescribable and most fans that witnessed it firsthand would probably agree that it can't justifiably be put into words as Smith found himself in a dogfight with the premier riders of the sport.
With nine laps to go, less than a second separated Smith, Dodge Bros Racing's Brad Baker (Eatonville, Wash.), Flat Track Live's Sammy Halbert (Graham, Wash.), Roger Racing's Jared Mees (Honetbrook, Penn.) and TJ Burnett Farms' Brandon Robinson (Oxford, Penn.) and it would remain that close all the way until the drop of the checkered flag.
"Everything went great for me all day," said Smith. "I really wanted to get away from the pack and win this thing by a long way. I had it going my way early on but my tire got hot and I started to fade back and eventually got pushed off the groove and found myself in a battle. Baker and the rest of the guys really gave me a good run and I knew it would be hard getting around those Harley's but luckily my Crosley Kawasaki was good on the straightaways and I was able to get by them one final time."
Bryan Smith #42 leads Jared Mees #9, Brandon Robinson #44 and Brad Baker #12 to the checkers last night at round 5 of the 2013 AMA Pro Flat Track presented by J&P Cycles Grand National Championship season at the Miller Lite Sacramento Mile.  Smith won for his 3rd-straight time at the Cal Expo-hosted event.  AMA Pro Flat Track photo by Dave Hoenig.
To no one's surprise, Smith got the hole-shot and was dominating early on. Then, all of a sudden, with 11 laps remaining, Smith slid off the groove on turn two and forfeited his once dominate lead. Smith's uncanny mistake opened up the floodgates for Baker and company who seemed to be waiting for that exact moment to capitalize.
Baker enjoyed the lead for less than two laps before defending Grand National Champion Jared Mees took over the top spot. With two laps remaining, the race was literally up for grabs as a split second separated the same five riders.
It was Smith who strategically passed all four riders to regain the lead on turn three of lap 24 and refused to surrender any more ground on the final lap. Mees would go on to finish second and just .083 seconds behind Smith with Robinson earning a solid third place finish. The two remaining riders that went bar-to-bar all the way up until the final lap was Baker and Halbert rounding out the top five, respectively.
AMA Pro J&P Cycles Pro Singles
The AMA Pro J&P Cycles Pro Singles race was also one for the record books and in the end it was Crosley Radio's Shayna Texter (Willow Street, Penn.) who brought the entire Sacramento crowd to their feet on the final lap as she outdueled Stockton Honda-Yamaha's Nate Wait (Lodi, Calif.) by a fingernail for her second consecutive victory at the Sacramento Mile.
Last year, Texter proved she could hang with the boys when she won the Sacramento Mile for her second career victory at the professional level. This year, she proved resilience as she started from second position on the grid but got off to a nightmare of a start. Texter found herself in sixth place after the first lap and it appeared she had dug herself too deep of a hole to repeat. However, the female phenomenon refused to let her bad jump off the line cost her as she made her way back up to the front, with the crowd roaring for every rider that she passed.
Texter would go on to win her second Sacramento Mile in as many years.
Nate finished in a close second with Parkinson Brothers Racing's Stephen Vanderkuur (Davison, Mich.) coming in third. Waters Auto Body's Ryan Wells (Albion, NY) and Rod Lake's Bronson Bauman (Salinas, Calif.) rounded out the top five.
About AMA Pro Flat Track presented by J&P Cycles:
AMA Pro Flat Track presented by J&P Cycles is a national motorcycle racing series in North America and is considered one of the oldest forms of motorcycle racing. Sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing, the Series is highly regarded as the most competitive form of dirt track racing in the world. The 2013 schedule consists of rounds on the country's finest flat track courses. For more information on AMA Pro Flat Track presented by J&P Cycles, please visit
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  

For additional information contact:
AMA Pro Racing Communications, (386) 492-1014,


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