Kings Kustoms Harley-Davidson rider Sammy Halbert stormed to victory on the cushion of Lima, Ohio, this weekend, winning his third race of the season and solidifying his position atop the championship point standings. Halbert used almost the same formula as his perfect debut at Daytona Beach this year, running hard and low at Lima as he set the fastest qualifying time, came out of the heat race with pole position, then squeezed his Kings Kustom XR750 for everything it was worth on his way to the win in the AMA Pro Harley-Davidson Insurance Expert Twins contest.
Round Nine of the AMA Flat Track season at the Allen County Fairgrounds started with a battle between Jake Johnson, who grabbed the holeshot, hard-charging rookie Brad Baker, and Bryan Smith. Johnson jumped out like he was ready to shave more off of Halbert’s championship points lead as he and Smith powered out to the lead. The race was red-flagged on the third lap though after rider Luke Gough went down in Turn 2. Smith jumped out front after that, but Halbert hung around for much of the first 10 laps before mounting an attack. Once he got by Smith, Halbert systematically opened up enough of a gap to claim his first victory on Lima’s cushion track. With the win, Halbert pushes his nine–point advantage over Johnson to 25.
“I guess it’s a tradition that the Lima winner orders pizza for everyone! 8 on the way! We did it!!” Halbert tweeted after the race.
Sammy Halbert took top honors for the first time at the Lima Half-Mile Saturday, holding off Matt Weidman by 1.183 seconds.
Heading three-wide into the turn at Lima!
White’s H-D rider Matt Weidman would fight his way up from a second row start to grab the second spot on the podium. The 2009 Rookie of the Year overtook Smith on Lap 17 and tried in vain to track Halbert down, finishing 1.183 seconds off the pace. Smith was able to hold off Baker by 1.107 seconds to grab the final podium spot.
Jared Mees, winner of two of the last three races, stays in the championship hunt after finishing fifth at Lima. Defending AMA Pro Flat Track champion Johnson looked strong early but would cross the line back in eighth, allowing Halbert to triple the point differential between the two competitors.
American Harley-Davidson/Fasthog.com’s Smith kept it from being a perfect weekend for Halbert by edging him out in the Dash for Cash. Slammin’ Sammy crossed the line second, beating out Baker and Gough.
Zakk Palmer powered his Western Hills Honda CRF450R to victory in the Motorcycle-Superstore.com Pro Singles Championship Saturday, winning a fierce duel with Palmer and Parkinson Brothers/Arai’s Chaz Springsteen. Zakk ripped off a couple of hot laps at the end of the race to capture his second victory of the 2011 season. Springsteen made it interesting late and pushed Palmer to the line on his way to a second-place finish. Bob Weirbach Racing’s Bobby Descenna made a successful debut to his racing season by grabbing the final podium position.
Steven Vanderkuur and Robert Treinen would battle hard for the fourth and fifth positions, with Vanderkuur getting the upper hand at the line by 0.328 seconds. Vortex Sprockets Gerit Callies would cross the line in sixth place, just ahead of Pro Singles point leader Mikey Avila. Callies came in to the Lima round trailing Avila by ten points but was only able to shave it down to nine. The third place contender in the class, Michael Martin, didn’t help his situation out any after finishing back in tenth place.
2011 Lima Half-Mile AMA Pro Grand National Twins Results:
1. Sammy Halbert (Harley-Davidson)
2. Matt Weidman (Harley-Davidson)
3. Bryan Smith (Harley-Davidson)
4. Brad Baker (Ducati)
5. Jared Mees (Harley-Davidson)
6. Kenny Coolbeth, Jr. (Harley-Davidson)
7. Robert Pearson (Harley-Davidson)
8. Jake Johnson (Harley-Davidson)
9. Jeffrey Carver, Jr. (Harley-Davidson)
10. Luke Gough (Harley-Davidson)
11. Jimmy Wood (Kawasaki)
12. Dustin Crow (Harley-Davidson)
13. Chris Carr (Harley-Davidson)
14. JD Beach (Kawasaki)
15. J R Schnabel, Jr. (Kawasaki)
16. Chad Cose (Suzuki)
17. Johnny Lewis (Kawasaki)
18. Nichole Cheza (Harley-Davidson)
2011 Pro Singles Lima Half-Mile Results
1. Zakk Palmer (Honda)
2. Chaz Springsteen (Honda)
3. Robert Descenna (Honda)
4. Stephen Vanderkuur (Honda)
5. Robert Treinen (Honda)
6. Gerit Callies (Honda)
7. Michael Avila (Honda)
8. Shane Narbonne (Honda)
9. Cody Johncox (Yamaha)
10. Michael Martin (Honda)
11. Coy Matthews (Honda)
12. Shayna Texter (Honda)