Mees Prepares To Defend Home Turf at Lima Half-Mile
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (June 22, 2021) – Progressive American Flat Track makes its hotly anticipated return to the Johnny K’s Indian Motorcycle Lima Half-Mile powered by Drag Specialties at Lima, Ohio’s Allen County Fairgrounds on Saturday, June 26 in the midst of a titanic three-way title fight.
Between them, Briar Bauman (No. 1 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750), Brandon Robinson (No. 44 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750), and Jared Mees (No. 9 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750) have accounted for five of six Mission SuperTwins presented by S&S Cycle victories on the year along with 13 of 18 possible podiums.
As a result, the talented trio currently rank 1-2-3 in the standings with just nine points separating first from third. All three are previous premier-class winners at the Lima Half-Mile, setting the stage for another epic battle on the venue’s fabled pea-gravel cushion.
As even as the Mission SuperTwins racing has been at the front in 2021, any psychological advantage this weekend must surely go to Mees, who comes into the weekend as the season’s most recent winner, the winner of the previous two Lima Half-Miles, and as the event’s promoter (along with his wife, Nichole).
Behind the leading three, Ohio-native Jarod Vanderkooi (No. 20 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750) rolls into Lima having strung together finishes of second, second, fourth, and fourth. That form has allowed Vanderkooi to supplant early-season championship leader JD Beach (No. 95 Estenson Racing Yamaha MT-07 DT) to take over fourth in the points.
Another rider to watch is third Mission Roof Systems pilot Brandon Price (No. 92 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750). Price has finished sixth or better in four of the last five races and earned an eye-opening fourth at Lima back in 2019 as a class rookie.
Estenson Yamaha’s Dallas Daniels (No. 1 Estenson Racing Yamaha YZ450F) dominated the 2020 AFT Singles season, winning more than half the races and locking up the championship fight early. Thanks to remarkably consistent finishes, Daniels has placed himself in good strategic position to defend his title. However, seconds, thirds, and fourths are quickly losing their allure to the newly 18-year-old.
Daniels has a real fight on his hands this season with both factory KTM pilots, Max Whale (No. 18 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 450 SX-FFE) and Shayna Texter-Bauman (No. 52 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 450 SX-FFE), boasting more wins, rival Henry Wiles (No. 17 American Honda/Progressive Insurance CRF450R) finding his form and teammate Mikey Rush (No. 15 Estenson Racing Yamaha YZ450F) demonstrating similar consistency.
Lima’s surface should suit the styles of Daniels’ major challengers quite well — none more so than Texter-Bauman, who has won the last two AFT Singles Main Events at the venue.
Another rider who has fared well at the track in the past is 2016 class champion Ryan Wells (No. 94 1st Impressions Race Team Honda CRF450R), who is due for a big weekend himself.
AFT Production Twins presented by Vance & Hines
Cory Texter (No. 65 G&G Racing/Yamaha Racing Yamaha MT-07) has separated himself from his AFT Production Twins presented by Vance & Hines competition with four of six race wins to assemble an imposing 35-point championship advantage.
2019 AFT Singles champion Dalton Gauthier (No. 79 D&D Cycles/Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson XG750R) and 2018 AFT Singles champion Dan Bromley (No. 62 Memphis Shades/Vinson Construction Yamaha MT-07) are the closest riders to Texter in the points and remain threats to break into the 2021 win column on any given weekend.
Fourth-ranked Chad Cose (No. 49 Voodoo Ranger/Roof Systems Harley-Davidson XG750R) will be motivated to make up for a deeply disappointing weekend in Oklahoma in which he was forced out of action due to mechanical issues on Friday night. While a loaner from Latus Motors and help from Vance & Hines enabled Cose to return to the podium on Saturday, he’s still hungry to make amends.
As such, the Lima Half-Mile couldn’t be better timed for the Californian. The last time the series visited the circuit, Cose overcame the challenge of Texter in the evening’s AFT Production Twins Main to claim his first-career Progressive AFT race victory after more than a decade trying.
Tickets are available for purchase now at https://www.168tickets.com/venue.php?venueID=268. General Admission tickets start at $30, with a limited number of upgraded reserved seating options still available.
The return of the Fan Walk at the OKC Mile I & II was a massive hit for fans and riders alike. It’s back for the Lima Half-Mile along with a Paddock Access ticket upgrade option which provides access to the paddock throughout the event.
The gates will open for fans both days at 3:00 p.m. ET/12:00 p.m. PT with Opening Ceremonies set to begin at 6:30 p.m. ET/3:30 p.m. PT. Live coverage of the entire weekend’s racing activities will be available on any device for only $1.99 a month via TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold.
The Johnny K’s Indian Motorcycle Lima Half-Mile powered by Drag Specialties will air on NBCSN on Saturday, July 3, at 5:00 p.m. ET/2:00 p.m. PT, featuring exclusive features and cutting-edge aerial drone and onboard footage.
For more information on Progressive AFT visit https://www.americanflattrack.com.
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