Bryan Smith (42) leading the field in AMA Pro Flat Track GNC Expert Twins action at the Springfield Mile.
The AMA Pro Harley-Davidson Insurance Grand National Championship presented by Motorcycle-Superstore.com and Lucas Oil returned to the Illinois State Fairgrounds for the Springfield Mile with Crosley Radio’s Bryan Smith coming out on top in GNC Expert Twins aboard the Kawasaki. “Slammin” Sammy Halbert of South East Harley trailed in second by a meager 0.041 seconds while Rogers Racing’s Jared Mees rounded out the podium.
“I couldn’t have done it without my team, they built one awesome bike, I’m very fortunate to be able to ride for them,” Smith said. “I felt going in that I’m the best on mile tracks and I definitely got the best out of my bike today. This was a big win for me.”
Smith and Halbert battled back and forth throughout the contest, each holding and ceding the lead a number of times. Smith first gained the front on Lap 5 and his Kawasaki was fast on the front and back stretches, but riders were able to close the gap in the corners. On Lap 24, Smith’s to the checkers was in question as he ran wide in Turn 2 and lost the lead to Halbert. Fortunately his Kawasaki was running fast as he promptly cranked the throttle and reclaimed the front on the back stretch, earning his second Expert Twins win of the season.
USC Kawasaki’s JD Beach finished in fourth, followed by Zanotti Racing’s Jake Johnson in fifth. Screaming Eagle Harley-Davidson’s Kenny Coolbeth Jr. earned sixth while Harley-Davidson of Wausau’s Willie McCoy fought his way to a seventh-place finish.
Johnson continues to hold the lead in points with Smith trailing in second by 15. Mees, who earlier in the weekend secured the AMA Pro Expert Singles title, sits third overall in Expert Twins, 17 points behind the lead. Halbert holds on to fourth place with Jeffrey Carver Jr. of Kiewsow Racing rounding out the top five.
AMA Pro Expert Twins Springfield Mile Results 2012:
1. Bryan Smith (Kawasaki)
2. Sammy Halbert (Harley-Davidson)
3. Jared Mees (Harley-Davidson)
4. JD Beach (Kawasaki)
5. Jake Johnson (Harley-Davidson)
6. Kenny Coolbeth Jr. (Harley-Davidson)
7. Willie McCoy (Harley-Davidson)
8. Jethro Halbert (Kawasaki)
9. Brandon Robinson (Kawasaki)
10. Brad Baker (Harley-Davidson)
11. Shaun Russell (Harley-Davidson)
12. Steven Bonsey (Kawasaki)
13. Matt Weidman (Kawasaki)
14. Robert Pearson (Kawasaki)
15. Jeffrey Carver Jr. (Harley-Davidson)
AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com Pro Singles
Sunnyside Cycle’s Cody Johncox took his first win of the season in AMA Pro Motorcycle-Superstore.com Pro Single action in Springfield, Illinois. Double Dick Bandits’ Zakk Palmer settled for second after an incredible battle with Johncox for the front. Hogwrench Racing’s Michael Bickerton was in the mix as well, coming across the finish in third.
“I tried the whole race to get down low, and when I did, I finally got some traction and was able to pull out the win,” said Johncox. “This is definitely the biggest win of my career and I’m so happy it came here in Springfield. I really have to thank my sponsors and team, they are a huge reason why I’m standing here today.”
The lead pack was crowded to excess in the final minutes of the contest, with 10 riders finishing under half a second behind Johncox. Palmer lagged by a paltry 0.004 seconds at the end. The contest started without incident and continued until Lap 9 when two riders went down and a red flag was thrown. Officials called for a staggered restart and from that point on, it was anyone’s guess who would take the win. Parkinson Brothers Racing’s Stephen Vanderkuur appeared to be on pace to earn his second win of the season and extend his points lead, but by the end he could do no better than seventh.
Just off the podium in fourth was Diesel Minnesota’s Cole Anderson, followed by Highs Dairy Stores’ Jason Isennock in fifth. DFW Honda’s Shayna Texter beat out Vanderkurr for sixth.
Vanderkuur has a single point advantage over Isnnock. Shoemaker trails an additional point back in third. Five Star Steel’s Ryan Wells holds to fourth and Weirbach Racing’s Dominic Colindres rounds out the top five.
AMA Pro Singles Springfield Mile Results 2012:
1. Cody Johncox (Yamaha)
2. Zakk Palmer (Honda)
3. Michael Bickerton (Honda)
4. Cole Anderson (Honda)
5. Jason Isennock (Honda)
6. Shayna Texter (Honda)
7. Stephen Vanderkuur (Honda)
8. Wyatt Maguire (Yamaha)
9. Dominic Colindres (Honda)
10. Jake Shoemaker (Honda)
11. Nick Mataya (Honda)
12. James Monaco (Honda)
13. Coy Matthews (Honda)
14. Jake Cunningham (Honda)
15. Kurtis Lee (Honda)