Mees takes Round 10 win as Harley score first podium
Following a two-week layoff, battle was rejoined in the American Flat Track Twins presented by Vance & Hines for the Elgdridge, NY, Rolling Wheels Half Mile - with Jared Mees taking the win, having had to sit out the last event for being a tad overenthusiastic at the semi-final start line (at the Lima Half Mile/Round 9).
The win saw him regain the championship lead from rival and teammate Bryan Smith (No. 1 Indian Motorcycle Racing backed by Allstate Scout FTR750).
On his No. 9 Indian Motorcycle Rogers Racing Scout FTR750, Mees obliterated all challengers en route to claiming his fifth checkered flag of the 2017 campaign with a near five-second margin of victory.
Mees faced early pressure from rival Sammy Halbert (No. 69 Estenson Logistics Harley-Davidson XR750) on the race's opening lap, but quickly asserted his authority - the victory marking the 25th of Mees' career. It also saw him complete an in-season Grand Slam with triumphs across all four disciplines (TT, Short Track, Mile and Half Mile) in 2017, with eight races still remaining.
Halbert’s second place was the best result for any Harley-Davidson all season long. Brad Baker (No. 6 Indian Motorcycle Racing backed by Allstate Scout FTR750) picked up his seventh podium result of the year, finishing third; Jeffrey Carver Jr was fourth on a Kawasaki Ninja 650, with Brandon Robinson (No. 44 Harley-Davidson Factory Flat Track Team XG750R (sponsored by Vance & Hines and Speed & Strength) making it two Harleys inside the top five - edging Lima winner Briar Bauman (Kawasaki Ninja 650) by 0.119 of a second for fifth.
Bryan Smith endured his worst finish of the season in seventh. He relinquished the points lead to Mees as a result. After opening the year red hot with four wins, a second and a third in the season's first six races, Smith now finds himself in something of a cold streak – in his last four outings, he's tallied up results of fourth, third, sixth and seventh.
The other Harley-Davidson XR750s finished eighth (Ryan Wells), 10th (Kenny Coolbeth, Jr, sponsored by Vance & Hines and Speed & Strength), and 18th (Jake Johnson, sponsored by Vance & Hines).
The series now moves on to the Harley-Davidson Calistoga Half Mile (Calistoga, California July 29th, the third of the three consecutive mid-season Half Miles) before landing in South Dakota for two races in three days during the Sturgis Rally – The Buffalo Chip TT presented by Indian Motorcycle (August 6) and The Harley-Davidson Black Hills Half Mile at Rapid City (August 8) – then moving on to the Peoria, Illinois TT just five days later, August 13.