Fasthog.com/American Harley-Davidson’s Bryan Smith passed local favorite Chris Carr on the final lap of the Sacramento Mile to claim the flat track victory this weekend.
Native son Chris Carr came within a half-motorcycle length from a storybook ending to his triumphant return to Sacramento. With friends, family and old racing buddies cheering him on from the stands, Carr led for much of the Sacramento Mile until Bryan Smith was able to get by on the final lap to edge him out for the victory by 0.042 seconds. Carr, born and raised in nearby Stockton, had won the last AMA Sacramento Mile 12 years ago and almost repeated the performance to a packed house at Cal Expo.
“My whole career, I’ve always said second place (stinks),” Carr said to the standing-room only crowd from the podium. “Now you know how I feel.”
Early on, it appeared Carr and defending Grand National Series champion Jake Johnson would duel to the finish. The two jumped into the lead by Lap 2 and quickly opened up a gap on the field. The duo would swap the lead position several times, but the duel allowed Smith to eventually reel them in. Smith was able to power into the lead on Lap 16 and then it was a dash for the finish. Carr looked like he might have enough to capture the checkers, but Smith fought his way back to the front to snatch victory from his grasp. Johnson would grab the final podium spot in third, 0.139 seconds behind Carr.
“Nobody is more surprised than me,” said Smith in the AMA Pro Flat Track press release. “I thought Chris was just playing with me – it seemed like he could pass me any time he wanted to. He has that ‘Tolbert Horsepower,’ you know.”
Watch out, the AMA Pro Flat Track freight train is coming through! Riders were rippin’ it up on the Sacramento Mile for the first time in 12 years.
The resurgent Jared Mees was able to power his way to a fourth-place finish, just ahead of GNC Combined Championship point leader Sammy Halbert. The race for the title is really heating up, with Mees and Johnson tied for second place, a scant four points behind Halbert. Fortunately for Slammin’ Sammy, the series heads next to Castle Rock, Washington, giving Halbert the comfort of home turf advantage.
The four-way battle for sixth through ninth was won by Brad Baker on his Lloyd Brothers Motorsports Ducati. Baker and Kenny Coolbeth, Jr. were neck-and-neck at the line, with Baker winning the dash by 0.003 seconds. Jeff Carver Jr. crossed a hair behind Coolbeth to capture eighth place, with Luke Gough finishing on the tail end of the four-man draft to capture ninth place.
Jake Johnson may not have won the race but walks away with the money he earned as winner of Sacramento’s Dash for Cash.
In the Motorcycle-Superstore.com Pro Singles Main, local talent again took center stage. Mikey Martin of Acampo drafted expertly to get around Madera’s Mikey Avila and two other riders on the last lap for the victory. After dicing it out with Avila for the lead for much of the race, Martin had to move up from fourth place to capture the win, his third consecutive trip to the top step of the podium. Martin went in to the race with a ten point lead on Gerit Callies but leaves Sacramento with a 15-point advantage over Avila, who leapt past Callies in the standings after a sixth-place showing in Sacramento.
While the duo was dicing it out up front, RLT Racing/Lancaster Harley-Davidson’s Shayna Texter crept up to grab the final spot on the podium, finishing just off the pace of the Mikey’s at 0.229-seconds back. She edged out Briar Bauman at the line by a mere 0.051 seconds to snare her first podium of the year. Bauman, making his pro Flat Track debut, went in to the last lap in second place before Martin and Texter both drafted past.
Cody Johncox would round out the Pro Singles top five. Johncox brought his Yamaha YZ450F in just ahead of Callies, who lost ground in the point standings, dropping from second to third.
The next round of AMA Pro Flat Track competition will be held at Washington’s Castle Rock Race Park for the Castle Rock TT on Aug. 6.
2011 AMA Pro Flat Track GNC Sacramento Mile Results:
1. Bryan Smith (Harley-Davidson)
2. Chris Carr (Harley-Davidson)
3. Jake Johnson (Harley-Davidson)
4. Jared Mees (Harley-Davidson)
5. Sammy Halbert (Harley-Davidson)
6. Brad Baker (Ducati)
7. Kenny Coolbeth, Jr. (Harley-Davidson)
8. Jeffrey Carver Jr. (Harley-Davidson)
9. Luke Gough (Kawasaki)
10. Willie McCoy (Harley-Davidson)
11. Shaun Russell (Kawasaki)
12. Matt Weidman (Harley-Davidson)
13. PJ Jacobsen (Harley-Davidson)
14. Jethro Halbert (Harley-Davidson)
15. Nichole Cheza (Harley-Davidson)
16. Brandan Bergen (Harley-Davidson)
17. Shawn Baer (Triumph)
18. Robert Pearson (Harley-Davidson)
2011 AMA Pro Singles Sacramento Mile Results:
1. Mike Martin (Honda)
2. Michael Avila (Honda)
3. Shayna Texter (Honda)
4. Briar Bauman (Honda)
5. Cody Johncox (Yamaha)
6. Gerit Callies (Honda)
7. Wyatt Maguire (Yamaha)
8. Jeremy Hamilton (Honda)
9. Robert Treinen (Honda)
10. Adam Bushman (Honda)
11. Corey Crawford (Honda)
12. Chris Podergois (Honda)