Friday, April 22, 2011

AMA Flat Track: Sammy Halbert Reviews DuQuoin and Looks Ahead to Salinas TT & Short Track For Easter Weekend

Sammy Halbert gets ready to pop in a set of ear plugs as final adjustments are being made on his #7 Woody Kyle Racing/Fredericktown Yamaha/Kings Kustoms YZ450F before he heads out for battle in round 3 action of the AMA Pro Flat Track Harley-Davidson Insurance Grand National Championship Series DuQuoin, IL. on Saturday, April 16.  The Southern Illinois Center hosted it's first National event in over six years last weekend, thanks to the tireless efforts of Steve Nace Racing and his crew, and presenting sponsor Four Rivers H-D out of Paducah, KY.  Drawing a field of 55 Expert and 48 Pro Singles riders, the DuQuoin Indoor Short Track National was also the first indoor event on AMA Flat Track's schedule in over six years and was a test of the best riders in the game going at it on the bullring while turning laps in the 11 second range.
Halbert, the '09 AMA Flat Track 'Mythical' Grand National Champion, came into DuQuoin with a 17 point lead after sweeping everything he touched a wheel on at Daytona from last month's opening races. One of the early favorites due to his training regimen and his 'off-season' racing schedule, this race would be right up Slammin' Sammy's alley.  Along with some other early-race favorites including Henry Wiles, J.D. Beach and Brad Baker, Sammy and the rest were left to fend for themselves when Kenny Coolbeth, 7-Time Champ Chris Carr and defending Champ Jake Johnson didn't get the note and came home 1,2,3 in a field packed with short track specialists.  This time the veterans took the kids to school!
After leading both Baker and Beach home in the second semi to qualify for the main event, all had a distinct disadvantage right off the bat in having to start from the third row.  And even with the National extended to 30 laps (AMA Flat Track decided to add 5 laps from the normal 25-lap main event to make up for the smaller size of the track), anyone any further back then the second row had their work more then cut out for them on this short and tight track.
During the final, Halbert, Beach and Baker methodically picked off riders in the event that lasted just shy of 6:20, and when the checkers had fallen had made their way to 5th, 6th, and 7th and had brought 'em home with nary a scratch. And they survived what could have been a ruthless battle with solid points, safe rides and able to look ahead to rounds 4 and 5 in Salinas this Easter Weekend.  And Sammy heads west with a still 16 point lead in the championship battle, with 18 rounds scheduled to go for 2011.  And it was a great show watching him come through traffic, just like it's going to be a great show for the rest of the season!

On a side note, the young lady in the background, right of the picture is one of the hardest working people at an AMA Pro Flat Track event.  Miriam Deitcher brings track-side action to fans of the sport via her Flat Track Live @ Facebook page, and works tirelessly at each and every event to bring the fans at home closer to the track action, serving up race action, behind the scenes action, videos and much more.  Having done 'at the track' action for the AMA several years ago, Miriam was kind enough this year to re-start her 'at the race coverage' via Facebook.
And if there is anyone that can type any faster then this hardworking lady, I wanna meet them.  Bottom line, between AMA Pro Flat Track's Live Timing and Scoring and Miriam's Flat Track Live on Facebook, you won't miss a thing if you can't make it to the races.  Tune in to Miriam's Flat Track Live or be lost in the dust of the greatest show on wheels, The Rolling Thunder Show!
Sammy Halbert turned what could have been a disastrous event into a great show in coming from the third row at last weekend's DuQuoin Indoor Short Track, round 3 of the 2011 AMA Pro Flat Track Harley-Davidson Insurance Grand National Championship Series, to bring it home in the 5th spot to retain a 16 point lead in the championship.  The man from Washington State put on a show of confidence and skill, working his way through the 19 rider main to score a solid top five finish in the toughest series on the planet, and what surely could have been the toughest track on the schedule.

Slammin' Sammy is headed to Salinas, CA. as this is being written for rounds 4 and 5 of the 2011 series schedule, with Salinas hosting a TT for tomorrow afternoon's event and a short track for Easter Sunday's event at the Salinas Sports Complex.  The action is just revving up early in the season, and the Rolling Thunder Show is guaranteed to keep you on your feet all year long!

Sammy talks about DuQuoin and previews Salinas for us thanks to this great video on his YouTube site:

You can also follow Slammin' Sammy National #7 here via his Facebook page:

If you haven't bookmarked this yet, do so now!  Miriam Deitcher's Flat Track Live on Facebook will keep you from jonesing away from the track and you'll know exactly what is happening at the track:


  1. Cool thanks for the info

    Sammy is awesome an that Miriam lady is a fox!

  2. Thanks for coming by Anon, and yes, Ms. Flat Track Live is quite the hottie, isn't she?!


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