AMA Pro Flat Track Series
Don Tilley Memorial Charlotte Half Mile at Charlotte Motor Speedway
Courtesy of AMA Pro Racing
Photo by Dave Hoenig/AMA Pro Racing
CONCORD, NC, AUG. 27, 2015
The world-class dirt track at Charlotte Motor Speedway will play host to the best dirt-track racers in the world this Saturday, August 29, in an AMA Pro Flat Track event known as the Don Tilley Memorial Charlotte Half Mile, in honor of Harley-Davidson icon Don Tilley.
Three of the leading riders who raced for Tilley will be in attendance at the event: Jay Springsteen, Gene Church and Tripp Nobles. The three will be special guests of honor at the event and will be on hand to sign autographs. The trio will also take a memorial lap with Tilley’s daughter.
AMA Pro Flat Track last raced in Charlotte in 2002, in a Half Mile race that was won by Kevin Varnes. The two other AMA Pro Flat Track races held in Charlotte were won by Will Davis, in 2001, and Mike Hacker, in 2000. This Saturday, both the Harley-Davidson GNC1 presented by Vance & Hines class and the GNC2 class will be featured at Charlotte, and both classes will run twin-cylinder motorcycles.
Only four currently active AMA Pro Flat Track riders have raced professionally on the dirt at Charlotte: Jared Mees, Bryan Smith, Kenny Coolbeth Jr. and Jake Johnson.
All eyes will be on defending champion and current GNC1 points leader Mees, as he tries to extend his lead in the standings by putting together a strong performance on the half-mile clay surface at Charlotte. Mees will pilot the number-one Las Vegas Harley-Davidson machine and is looking to earn his fifth straight podium finish.
Chasing Mees in the points standings is Smith. However, the rider of the number-42 Crosley Radio Kawasaki has been on a skid lately, as he’s finished outside the top five in his last two GNC1 main events. Smith sits second in the GNC1 standings with 127 points to Mees’ 156.
Sitting third and only three points behind Smith in the GNC1 standings is Sammy Halbert. The racer from Graham, Washington, will be riding the number-69 Briggs Auto Harley-Davidson at Charlotte on Saturday; he will be sporting the number 69 for the remainder of 2015 in honor of his late brother Jethro Halbert.
Coolbeth will be hungry for success this Saturday, as he failed to qualify for the main event at the last round, the Peoria TT. Fortunately for the native of Morris, Connecticut, almost always follows up a less-than-ideal performance with a stellar one. The three-time Grand National Champion will pilot the number-two Zanotti Racing Harley-Davidson at Charlotte and will be looking to improve on his fourth-place position in the GNC1 points standings.
Jake Johnson will pilot the number-five Factory Harley-Davidson machine during Saturday’s Don Tilley Memorial Charlotte Half Mile, filling in for the injured Brad Baker. Johnson, a two-time Grand National Champion, finished third in his only race at Charlotte in 2002, and he’ll be looking for similar success this weekend.
Current Saddlemen Rookie of the Year Award leader Jarod Vanderkooi is putting together an impressive first season competing in the premier Harley-Davidson GNC1 class. He sits 14th in the GNC1 points standings and has made seven main events this year. Vanderkooi will ride the number-17F Don’s Kawasaki machine at Charlotte.
Shayna Texter will make her second start with her new team on Saturday, aboard the number-52 RMR Kawasaki.
The 25-lap Harley-Davidson GNC1 main event is slated for a 9:20 p.m. start time on Saturday night.
In GNC2 competition, almost no one has been able to catch the pilot of the number-67M Racing Unlimited Kawasaki, Davis Fisher. This rising star has finished second or better six times this season, including two wins, giving him a comfortable lead in the points standings.
Dan Bromley sits second in the GNC2 standings, with 116 points to Fisher’s 138, and he’ll be looking to close the gap at Charlotte on Saturday aboard his number-54A Bill Werner Racing Kawasaki.
Sitting fourth in the points standings is the pilot of the number-30Z Lombardi’s Harley-Davidson, Bronson Bauman, who has qualified for all nine GNC2 main events this season and has landed on the podium in two of the last three.
Andrew Luker posted the very first main-event win of the GNC2 season at Daytona, and the 17-year-old will be looking to climb back on top of the box this weekend aboard the number-11Z Kennedy Racing Harley-Davidson.
Tickets and Tune-In
For tickets and information regarding this Saturday’s Don Tilley Memorial Half Mile, fans are encouraged to visit http://www.ticketmaster.com/event/0E004EC299CF305C?brand=cms&camefrom=cfc_cms_AMA.
Live-streaming action from the Charlotte Half Mile will begin with practice and qualifying at 2 p.m. ET/ 11 a.m. PT, followed by the Pre-Race Show at 5 p.m. ET/ 2 p.m. PT. Opening ceremonies will kick off the night’s racing action at 6 p.m. ET/ 3 p.m. PT. The GNC2 main event is scheduled for 8:50 p.m. ET/ 5:50 p.m. PT, and the Harley-Davidson GNC1 presented by Vance & Hines main event is slated to go green at 9:20 p.m. ET/ 6:20 p.m. PT. Fans who can’t make it to the event can catch all of the live-streaming action on FansChoice.tv at http://www.fanschoice.tv/watch-live/ama/flat-track.
FansChoice.tv is the official home for live-streaming coverage of AMA Pro Flat Track events. The site also provides coverage of IMSA’s development and single-make series, and NASCAR’s touring and weekly series. Catch all the action at http://www.FansChoice.tv.
About AMA Pro Flat Track
AMA Pro Flat Track is the world’s premier dirt-track motorcycle-racing series and one of the longest-running championships in the history of motorsports. Sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing in Daytona Beach, Florida, the series is highly regarded as the most competitive form of dirt-track motorcycle racing on the globe. For more information on AMA Pro Flat Track, please visit www.amaproracing.com/ft/, follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook or live stream the on-track action on FansChoice.tv.
About AMA Pro Racing
AMA Pro Racing is the premier professional motorcycle-racing organization in North America, operating a full schedule of events and championships for a variety of motorcycle disciplines. Learn more about AMA Pro Racing at www.amaproracing.com.