Harley-Davidson Factory Flat Track Racing Team Announced

From RideApart.com –

Harley-Davidson will field a three-rider squad in the American Flat Track series this year. AMA Pro Grand National champions Kenny Coolbeth Jr. and Jake Johnson and young flat track star Brandon Robinson will wear the legendary H-D Factory Team leathers. The series opens during Daytona Bike Week at the March 16 Daytona TT on a new circuit featuring a jump to be constructed inside Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Fla.

“This edition of the Harley Factory Team will bring unmatched savvy and experience to the track,” said Harley-Davidson Vice President and Managing Director U.S. Mike Kennedy. The team will field a fleet of Harley XG750R bikes with a custom chassis purpose-built for flat track racing, the XG750R flat tracker is powered by a race-modified, liquid-cooled, fuel-injected 750cc Revolution X engine originally engineered for the Street 750. The chassis and engine have been developed by Vance and Hines Motorsports.

Kenny Coolbeth Jr.
A three-time AMA Pro Grand National champion (2006-2008), the veteran Coolbeth has won 36 times in the Grand National Championship, more than any active racer in the series. Coolbeth claimed three consecutive titles while racing for the Harley-Davidson Factory Team from 2006 to 2013. Aboard the Zanotti Racing Harley-Davidson XR750 in 2016, Coolbeth won at the Springfield Mile and finished seventh in points. He was named the Rookie of the Year in 1994 and won his first Grand National race in 2002. Coolbeth is 39 years old and lives in Center Hill, Fla.

Jake Johnson
Jake Johnson won consecutive AMA Pro Grand National Championships (2010-2011) on Zanotti Racing Harley-Davidson XR750 motorcycles and has won 20 times in the Grand National Championship since moving up to the top pro class in 2002. In 2016 Johnson won on the Daytona short track and was fourth in the season standings. Johnson won the AMA Pro Singles class championship in 2006 and 2008 and was Rookie of the Year in 2002. Johnson is 32 years old and lives in Coatesville, Pa.

Brandon Robinson
Brandon Robinson enjoyed a break-out season in 2013 with seven top-five finishes and three victories, including a sweep of both races on the Springfield Mile. In 2016, Robinson piloted the Kennedy Racing Harley-Davidson XR750 to his fourth career victory with a win on the Lima half-mile, notched two additional podium results and finished third in the point standings. As an amateur, Robinson won the AMA Twins Expert class championship in 2008. Robinson is 26 years old and lives in Oxford, Pa.


Harley-Davidson XG750R: Factory Flat Track Team Will Race New Liquid-Cooled Engine In 2017

From Roadracing World –

MILWAUKEE – Fast, liquid-cooled and with big shoes to fill: The Harley-Davidson® XG750R motorcycle will be the only bike raced by the Harley-Davidson® Factory Flat Track Racing Team in 2017. The new flat-tracker will replace the Harley-Davidson® XR750, the most successful flat-track racing motorcycle of all time.

The Harley-Davidson Factory Team will contest the 2017 American Flat Track (ATF) racing series and ESPN’s X Games Minneapolis Harley-Davidson® Flat Track Racing event exclusively aboard the XG750R bikes. The racing season opens during Daytona Bike Week at the March 16 ATF Daytona TT on a new circuit featuring a jump to be constructed inside Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida.

“There is extraordinary energy building behind the new American Flat Track series and after decades of XR750 dominance, it’s time to bring a new level of performance and technology to the track with the Harley-Davidson XG750R,” said Harley-Davidson Vice President and Managing Director U.S. Mike Kennedy. “The new Daytona TT promises to be a thrilling event. If you are in Daytona for Bike Week, ride to the race and help the Factory Team kick off an exciting season.”


MILWAUKEE (January 28, 2017) – It’s a flat-track triple threat. The Harley-Davidson®Factory Flat Track Racing Team will unleash a three-rider squad in 2017. Former AMA Grand National champions Kenny Coolbeth Jr. and Jake Johnson and young flat-track star Brandon Robinson will race in the legendary Factory Team leathers.
The team was announced today during a live interview with Coolbeth, Johnson and Robinson during ABC network coverage of ESPN’s X Games Aspen.

Gunning for the checkered flag aboard the fierce Harley-Davidson XG750R competition motorcycle, the formidable trio of ace racers will chase a championship on the American Flat Track (AFT) series and fight to medal in the Harley-Davidson Flat Track Racing event at ESPN’s X Games Minneapolis. The racing season opens during Daytona Bike Week at the March 16 AFT Daytona TT on a new circuit featuring a jump to be constructed inside Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, Florida.

Marquez reclaims Superprestigio crown; Baker takes home third

BARCELONA (Dec. 17, 2016) – American Flat Track star Brad Baker has been crowned the king of the Superprestigio in each of his two previous appearances, but this year Marc Marquez toppled the crown. The three-time, defending MotoGP™ World Champion took top honors in the Superfinal in front of his hometown crowd at Barcelona’s Palau Sant Jordi on Saturday night.

The pair headed into the final showdown of the evening as winners of the brackets for their respective classes – Superprestigio and Open – but they were both after bragging rights for taking home that Superfinal win and Marquez was happy to have that this year.

“Of course I’m really happy because this is the Superprestigio,” Marquez said. “Last year I was really close from the victory and this year I get it. I know the mistakes that I did last year, but this year I try to be in a different way and it was working well. But especially the pace was working really good. Toni (Elias) was pushing a lot but the pace this year was the best year, what I feel. Also, one of the reasons was my team. They are right here at the Palau. It was a really good job.”

It was a reversal of fortune for Baker, as this time around Marquez made improvements to his setup and rode off into the distance, while Baker had to play it smart to get a spot on the podium.

“Tire choice was very crucial today,” Baker said. “The surface was very abrasive and these tires are very soft, so they wear really quick. I really never road with a new tire all day long, but I just thought with the 16 laps that I was going to need a lot of rubber, a lot of tire to last at the end and it was a bad decision.”

Two laps in, Baker knew his mistake and knew that his race was over. Toni Elias was able to get past Baker and attempt to chase down his fellow Spaniard, but Marquez was in the zone. The former Moto2 World Champion and current MotoAmerica Superbike racer had to settle for second, but after a rough week struggling to find the right setup, Elias was more than happy with a runner-up result.

“We didn’t expect that. We knew that the Superprestigio (Final) was possible but not the Superfinal,” Elias said. Thanks to my team because they work really hard throughout the week, especially the last days. We made the right choices at the right time.”

Elias also had a bit of luck, as he realized last minute that his tire was toast before going into the Superfinal. But with the good will of the tire manufacturer, they reopened their truck and fitted a new tire for him.

“I was really close to losing the Superfinal because my rear tire was completely finished and I went to push for it; I need to change my tire,” Elias said. “He waited for me and finally everything was right. The Superfinal was perfect. I could pass Brad,  someone who rides that well. This is nice to end the year this way, because it’s been a nice year. Thanks to everybody in the U.S. Thanks to this team, to my family, all the fans in the stand. And tonight to continue to party!”

As for Baker, he was obviously disappointed not to keep his Superprestigio streak alive, but he’s enjoyed his time in Spain and is more motivated than ever to come back next year and take back the crown.

“Well, first off, this event, this time that I come over and spend in Spain is something that I’ll remember forever,” Baker said. “It’s been something that is very important to me and the people that I’ve met here in Spain and for the Superprestigio – it’s irreplaceable. I’ve enjoyed it and I’ve had a really good time here at the Superprestigio, but it’s like the pressure to win and to produce for Flat Track, it gets more intense every single year, everybody else gets better. But I’m just thankful to be a part of that and that Flat Track is here and the Superprestigio is getting bigger and everyone else is growing with it.”

Moto2 racer Xavier Simon was fourth.  In fifth, and the next best Open class rider was Spanish flat track racer Gerard Bailo followed by another Moto2 racer, Marcel Schrotter. The 2016 RFME Copa de Flat Track Champion Ferran Cardus was shuffled back to seventh after a mid-race miscue. Five-time FIM Supermoto World Champion Thomas Chareyre’s eighth-place result completed the results for the Superfinal.

Next Up:

American Flat Track will kick off the 2017 season during Daytona’s Bike Week festivities on Thursday, March 16 with the all-new DAYTONA TT, built inside the trioval at Daytona International Speedway. The DAYTONA TT will mark the dawning of a new era for America’s most historic form of motorcycle racing, and the “World Center of Racing” will serve as the first battleground for the great American war between Harley-Davidson and Indian Motorcycles in 2017. Tickets for the DAYTONA TT are now on sale and can be purchased at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com.

Ferran Cardús Wins Spanish Flat Track Title

Sent on behalf of Noyes Camp Racing:

MADRID, Spain (Nov. 29, 2016) – The cancellation of the final race of the RFME Cup, due to circumstances beyond the control of the promoters, meant that the season ended earlier since no acceptable alternative could be found on such short notice. Franc Serra (Honda ART), the only rider with a mathematical option of taking the title after six races, was runner-up just ahead off former 125cc road racing World Champion Nico Terol (Honda NicoGas).

Four riders scored wins over the season: Brad Baker and Cardús both took two wins while Serra and Terol had a win apiece. Baker´s wins came in the opening round at Valencia I, the American from Washington winning both on the quarter-mile and TT tracks. Terol´s win came on the Madrid quarter mile. Next came the Rancho Canudas double-header with Serra taking victory in the quarter mile and Cardus winning the TT. The final race of the season, Valencia II, ended with a podium that reflected the final points standings with a win for Cardús, his second, over Serra and Terol.

Gerard Bailo (Suzuki Català) was fourth in the points table ahead of Baker (Noyes Camp Kawasaki), Guillermo Cano (ESR Bikes), Adrián Garín (Honda ART) and Oliver Brindley (Noyes Camp Kawasaki). Only eleven points separated fourth from eighth, an example of the close racing in this first year of the RFME Flat Track Cup.

Master and Rookies

Guillermo Cano (ERS Honda) and Ferran Sastre (Kawasaki Noyes Camp) took the titles in the Master and Rookie categories, respectively. Both champions put together a season of wins and podiums and both clinched their titles in the penultimate race of the season (Valencia II).

Runner-up in Master was Vicent Navarro (Suzuki Grau) with Lluís Massana (KTM Parcerisas) third. Runner-up in Rookies was Genis Gelada (Coward/Supermotard Kit) with Marc Capdevila (KTM Parcerisas) third.

About the Championship:

The RFME Spanish Flat Track Cup is the first national Flat Track series run in Spain. The calendar included five tracks and seven races. Events were held in Catalonia, Madrid and Valencia. For the first time this most American form of motorsport was featured not as an individual event but as a season-long series. On Track Motorsports (Barcelona, Spain) and American Flat Track (Daytona Florida) were in close contact over the season and the American promoters mentored their Spanish counterparts. The rules for the RFME series closely follow the American series and both championships use 19 inch wheels with Dunlop as the official provider. More information is available at Flattrack.org.

Riders’ Thoughts from 2016 and Looking Toward ’17

Have you ever wondered what the superstars of professional Flat Track racing think after a season-long battle for the title? We talked to some of your favorite athletes and asked them what they thought about the season. Take a look at what they had to say coming off 2016 and what they’re looking forward to in 2017.


Jake Johnson – No. 5 Zanotti Racing Harley-Davidson XR750
“We had a bit of an up and down season. We started strong with a win at the DAYTONA II but weren’t able to carry that momentum into the rest of the season. The whole Zanotti team kept pushing, we had some decent finishes, but I feel we never showed our full potential. I’m really looking forward to 2017 and making a strong run towards the Championship.”

Cory Texter

Cory Texter – No. 65 Cory Texter Racing Kawasaki Ninja 650
“The 2016 season was very long, but exciting. I had my work cut out running my own team, racing my own motorcycles and traveling across the country in a van competing against the best in the business. We had a couple of podium finishes, but we also had quite a few mechanical issues and bad luck throughout the year. The goal for next season is to tighten up on those mistakes and contend for podiums and wins on a more consistent basis.”

Peoria TT - AMA Pro Flat Track - Peoria, Illinois - August 14, 2016 :: Contact me for download access if you do not have a subscription with andrea wilson photography. :: ..:: For anything other than editorial usage, releases are the responsibility of the end user and documentation will be required prior to file delivery ::..

Henry Wiles – No. 17 USC Racing Kawasaki Ninja 650
“I had a positive 2016 season. I was able to get three top-five finishes on Miles along with winning my 12th race in a row at the famed Peoria TT. I’m looking forward to racing the twin motorcycles on TT-style races in 2017. Especially the series opener at Daytona.”

Sammy Halbert – No. 69 Lloyd Brothers’ Motorsports Ducati Hypermotard 1100
“This year started off great for me with a win at the season opener and podiums to follow at the next couple of rounds; only to have things go downhill from there for various reasons. Looking forward to having a fresh start in 2017 aboard a new team.”


Briar Bauman – No. 14 Weirbach Racing Kawasaki Ninja 650
“It was a difficult season but we made it through. Had some highs and some lows. Really looking forward to 2017.”

Santa Rosa Mile 2016

Brad Baker – No. 6 Factory Harley-Davidson XR750
“2016 wasn’t one for the record books for myself but it was definitely a season that I can take a lot out of to better and further my career. I feel like I have been being tested these past three seasons getting me ready for something great. In 2017, I am starting fresh with a new team, new bike, new rules and hopefully new beginnings. I am stronger and more talented than I have ever been before, I cannot wait to get the season underway in Daytona come March.”

Bryan Smith Pushes Sacramento Mile Win Streak to Six

SACRAMENTO (May 21, 2016) — Bryan Smith made it six in a row at Cal Expo’s Sacramento Mile Saturday night. Smith led from flag to flag on his Kawasaki, but was challenged to the very end by Harley-Davidson mounted Kenny Coolbeth Jr., of Center Hill, Florida. The margin of victory at the end of the 25-lap national was 0.024 seconds, or about a wheel length. Salinas, California’s Stevie Bonsey finished third on his Harley-Davidson, matching his best result of the season.

Smith, of Flint, Mich., has won every race at Cal Expo since the AMA Pro motorcycle event returned to the mile oval after a 12-year hiatus in 2011.

Smith started from the pole and led all 25 laps of the main event. He held off the former national champ Kenny Coolbeth, Jr., in a thrilling finish.

Factory Harley-Davidson rider Brad Baker was the only rider even able to briefly pass Smith. Just past halfway Baker made a move by Smith into turn three, but his bike had a mechanical issue just an instant later coming out of four.

“I felt the pressure and then Brad went by me,” Smith said. “And then his bike blew up and I about ran into him.”

Smith had to overcome faded brakes on his motorcycle in the closing laps. The rear brake disc on his Kawasaki was glowing red from overheating.

“With about three to go I went into turn one and no brakes,” Smith explained. “That was a real nail biter the last few laps. I was lucky Kenny didn’t run me over in the turns.”


Bryan Smith, of Flint, Michigan, waves to the crowd at Cal Expo, just before winning his sixth consecutive Sacramento Mile Saturday night. (Larry Lawrence photo)

Defending series champ Jared Mees had issues with his machine and finished 14th.

With the victory Smith took over the points lead after five rounds of the 14-race AMA Pro Flat Track National Championship. He now leads by two points (86-84) over Sammy Halbert, of Graham, Washington. Jake Johnson, of Coatesville, Pennsylvania, is ranked third in the standings with 77 points after finishing fifth.

Bonsey, in third, was the top finishing Californian. Briar Bauman (Salinas) was sixth, Nick Armstrong (Norco) 11th and Kayl Kolkman (Ventura) 18th.

Tristan Avery, of Chesterfield, VA, won the GNC2 support race.

Results of the Sacramento Mile, AMA Pro Flat Track Race, Cal Expo, Sacramento, CA – May 22, 2016
1.  Bryan Smith, Swartz Creek, MI, Kawasaki Ninja 650
2.  Kenny Coolbeth, Jr., Center Hill, FL, Harley-Davidson 750
3.  Stevie Bonsey, Salinas, CA, Harley-Davidson 750
4.  Jarod Vanderkooi ,Mt Gilead, OH, Kawasaki Ninja 650
5.  Jake Johnson, Coatesville, PA, Harley-Davidson 750
6.  Briar Bauman, Salinas, CA, Kawasaki Ninja 650
7.  Henry Wiles, Winn, MI, Kawasaki Ninja 650
8.  Sammy Halbert, Graham, WA, Harley-Davidson 750
9.  Cory Texter, Willow Street, PA, Kawasaki Ninja 650
10. Shawn Baer, Bethel, PA, KTM LC8 950
11. Nick Armstrong, Norco, CA, Yamaha FZ07
12. Jeffrey Carver Jr., Alton, IL, Kawasaki Ninja
13. Jake Shoemaker, Glenmoore, PA, Triumph Bonneville
14. Jared Mees Clio, MI Harley-Davidson 750
15. Brad Baker, Eatonville, WA, Harley-Davidson 750
16. Brandon Robinson, Oxford, PA, Kawasaki 740
17. Davis Fisher, Warren, OR, Harley-Davidson 750
18. Kayl Kolkman, Ventura, CA, Kawasaki Ninja 650

Richie Morris Racing Sacramento Mile Race Wrap

Sacramento, Calif. (23 May 2016) – Richie Morris Racing returned to the fabled Sacramento Mile at Cal Expo this weekend with rider Shayna Texter looking forward to Round 5 of the 2016 AMA Pro Flat Track Racing championship.

Working through the practice and qualifying sessions ahead of the Harley-Davidson GNC1 presented by Vance & Hines main event, Saturday’s outing proved to be a frustrating one for the RMR squad as the team continued to look for suspension solutions for the in-house built chassis.

Texter, who arrived at the one-mile oval with the confidence that being a two-time winner in AMA Pro Flat Track GNC2 competition at the track brings, was hoping to build some momentum with the RMR entry that sports backing from McElroy Packaging, Tucker Rocky Distributing and Roland Sands Designs. Texter and the RMR squad worked to build speed with the entry, posting improved times through the first practice, second qualifying, and into the Semi. Despite posting lap speeds that were nearly 1.5 seconds faster than the initial practice outings, a run to seventh in the Semi 2 closed out the day for the team.

“We are getting a wobble in high-speed conditions, so we are working on a solution to that problem,” said team owner Richie Morris.

The swing through Arizona and California for the two most recent rounds of AMA Pro Flat Track action will be followed this weekend by a return to the fabled Springfield Mile. The busy stretch of races, compounded by the wide reach of geography, has added an extra challenge as RMR looks to unlock speed out of the newly deployed in-house design.

“We all knew there would be growing pains as we work to build this program,” said Morris. “However, we were completely blindsided by this particular problem. Compounded by the fact that we have been unable to return to our shop for modifications because of the travel required, we have found ourselves scrambling to make adjustments on the road. We were able to run a test on a mile track on Sunday the day after our race in Sacramento, we learned a lot and are gaining confidence in our setup plan for Springfield.”


About Richie Morris Racing

Richie Morris Racing is a professional motorcycle race team. Having competed at the highest level in different genres of motorcycle racing, RMR has won four national championships in AMA Pro Road Racing. The team has scored numerous wins and podium finishes with many different professional riders. We believe in building a solid platform to win races and championships. In doing so, our mission being that of delivering value to our riders and partners.

2016 AMA Pro Flat Track Schedule

May 29: Springfield Mile I – Illinois State Fairgrounds, Springfield, Ill.
June 18: Oklahoma City Mile – Remington Park, Oklahoma City, Okla.
June 25: Lima Half-Mile – Allen County Fairgrounds, Lima, Ohio
July 30: Charlotte Half-Mile – Charlotte Motor Speedway, Charlotte, N.C.
August 9: Sturgis Half-Mile – Black Hills Speedway, Rapid City, S.D.
August 14: Peoria TT – Peoria Motorcycle Club, Peoria, Ill.
August 20: TBA, New York State
September 4: Springfield Mile II – Illinois State Fairgrounds, Springfield, Ill.
September 25: Santa Rosa Mile, California

Bryan Smith Going for Sixth Consecutive Sacramento Mile Victory this Saturday

Bryan Smith Going for Sixth Consecutive Sacramento Mile Victory this Saturday

SACRAMENTO, CA (May 17, 2016) – Bryan Smith is riding high coming into this Saturday’s 51st running of the historic Sacramento Mile, round five of the 14 race AMA Pro Flat Track Championship. Smith races into Sacramento not only owning a five-race winning streak at Cal Expo, but the veteran racer from Flint, Michigan, is also coming off a jaw-dropping runaway victory last weekend on the Turf Paradise Mile in Phoenix. In Phoenix Smith figured out the challenging racing surface and rode his No. 42 Crosley/Howerton Motorsports Kawasaki Ninja 650 to a convincing 12.646-second margin of victory, almost unheard of in the wheel-to-wheel racing action of AMA Grand National miles.

“Normally Sacramento is a little earlier in the year and was the first mile, so you’d come in there not knowing how you are going to do,” said Smith, who with five wins, is tied for third on the all-time Sacramento Mile wins list. “This year I coming off the win in Arizona and with the history I’ve had at Sacramento, I’m pretty excited to be rolling into the Cal Expo complex.”

Smith is undoubtedly the rider to beat in this year’s edition of the Sacramento Mile and this year he has perhaps even more incentive since he comes to the race ranked fourth in the standings, only 11 points out of the championship lead. It’s a much better position than Smith has found himself in coming into Sacramento previously, mainly because of the struggles he’s had in recent years at the season-opening doubleheader short track races in Daytona Beach, Florida.

“This is the closest I’ve been to the front this early in the year,” Smith admits. “It’s almost like Daytona was the most important two races of the year for me. The miles come easier for me than the short tracks. So I put a lot of focus on Daytona this year and yeah, it would be nice to come away with a win or podium, but to come out of there with the points we did (finishing fifth and eighth) gave us a great base to build off of and now we can go about business on the miles like we always do.”

One other factor this year for Smith is his Ricky Howerton-built Crosley/Howerton Motorsports Kawasaki Ninja 650 race bike. This year Smith is racing the third generation of the revolutionary Howerton Kawasaki, arguably the most technologically advanced motorcycle ever raced in AMA Pro Flat Track. Smith admits it was nail-biting time for the squad in Arizona last week, since Howerton’s latest creation had never been tested.

“This bike takes all that we’ve learned from the two previous versions and it really seems to suit me. So we rolled out the new bike in Arizona and needless to say it wasn’t a bad debut.

“That was the first time the bike was ever on the track. We had planned to test it at the Indy Mile, but it rained. I rode it up and down Gasoline Alley a couple of times (in front of Howerton’s Indianapolis shop), we loaded it on the truck and crossed our fingers.”

There’s a tightly-packed group of four riders battling it out in the AMA Pro Flat Track Championship standings coming into Sacramento. Sammy Halbert has a five-point lead (73-68) over defending series champ Jared Mees. Jake Johnson and Smith are right in the mix as well with 63 and 62 points respectively.

Smith is hoping a sixth consecutive victory at Sacramento will propel him to the front of the pack and put him on the road to finally winning his first AMA Pro Flat Track Championship.

The AMA Pro Grand National Championship series is one of the longest running motorcycle racing championships in the world. On the long straights of the Sacramento Mile top speeds can reach 130 miles per hour. Flat track racing has produced many of America’s Motorcycle Grand Prix Champions such as Kenny Roberts, Eddie Lawson, Wayne Rainey, Kenny Roberts, Jr. and Nicky Hayden. Visit www.sactomile.com to keep up with all the latest on the event.

This year fans will have a unique opportunity to go to two AMA Pro National events on the same day. The opening round of the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross kicks off with the Hangtown National near Rancho Cordova during the day and fans can then come to Cal Expo to watch the AMA Pro Flat Track National.

Practice at Cal Expo begins at 2:30 pm and the opening ceremonies are at 6:30 pm.

For additional series info visit: www.amaproracing.com/ft
Via Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SactoMile
Twitter: https://twitter.com/sactomile
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/sactomile

*** 2016 Ticket Information: Ticket information is available for the May 21, 2016 Sacramento Mile at www.sactomile.com.

Fans can order tickets online at http://sactomile.com/tickets, or by calling 1-844 SAC MILE (1-844- 722-6453).