Progressive AFT Jumps Back into Action with Yamaha Atlanta Super TT
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – On Saturday, May 1 Progressive American Flat Track will finally make its long-awaited TT return, doing so in the biggest, boldest way imaginable, with the Yamaha Atlanta Super TT at Atlanta Motor Speedway.
Utilizing the fabled venue’s start/finish line straight as part of the Super TT’s layout, the circuit promises to be the ultimate test of the world’s elite dirt tracker’s all-around skills. They’ll be forced to negotiate a decreasing radius corner on pavement, a hard-braking hairpin, surface transitions, a pair of right turns, and a dirt jump, in addition to classic dirt track style left-handers.
Designed to challenge the outer limits of a rider’s comfort zone, the Atlanta Super TT has attracted some big names onto the entry list including two-time TT winner Ryan Sipes (No. 264 Red Bull/Troy Lee Designs KTM 450 SX-F) and motorsport legend Travis Pastrana (No. 199 Red Bull KTM 450 SX-F), known for being one of the most daring athletes ever to ride on two wheels.
Not only has the Yamaha Atlanta Super TT’s roster of A-List cameos attracted attention, but so has its potential to reshape the early-season race for all three class championships.
Mission SuperTwins presented by S&S Cycle title favorites Briar Bauman (No. 1 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750) and Jared Mees (No. 9 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750) earned their championships, along with their reputations, based on their all-around excellence. Each man boasts more than one TT victory on their extensive résumés and figure to be in contention for the win again Saturday night.
However, they also figure to be in the unfamiliar position of (slight) underdog, with JD Beach (No. 95 Estenson Racing Yamaha MT-07 DT) a popular pick to deliver Yamaha a home-track triumph. The multi-time roadracing champion is well established as a sensational TT racer, winning two of the last three the series has visited. He’s also coming in bursting with confidence after taking his MT-07 DT to an impressive runner-up result in last month’s opener at Volusia Speedway Park.
The Atlanta Super TT may just be the perfect opportunity for ex-roadrace ace and reigning AFT Production Twins champion James Rispoli (No. 43 Latus Motors Racing Harley-Davidson XG750R Rev X) to make serious waves on the Harley in the premier class.
Yamaha has an opportunity to become the first manufacturer in Progressive AFT history to sweep all three classes in a single evening, and do so just miles from its American headquarters. None of the three wins should be expected to come easily, however, and the AFT Singles class could prove to be the most difficult to master of them all.
The class is stocked deep with TT talent, headlined by the greatest TT rider the sport has ever known, Honda-mounted Henry Wiles (No. 17 American Honda/United Rentals CRF450R).
And while points leader and Volusia double winner Shayna Texter-Bauman (No. 52 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 450 SX-FFE) has generally struggled at TTs, KTM comes in fully-loaded with Texter-Bauman’s teammate Max Whale (No. 18 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 450 SX-FFE) and the aforementioned pair of future Hall of Famers of Sipes and Pastrana joining Texter-Bauman in the lineup.
The list of potential race winners hardly ends there, but Yamaha does have defending class champion and ‘19 Peoria TT dominator Dallas Daniels (No. 1 Estenson Racing Yamaha YZ450F) and Mikey Rush (No. 15 Estenson Racing Yamaha YZ450F) in its corner.
AFT Production Twins presented by Vance & Hines
Speaking of Daniels, the 17-year-old prodigy will be pulling double duty to make his much-anticipated twin-cylinder debut aboard the No. 32 Estenson Racing Yamaha MT-07 in AFT Production Twins presented by Vance & Hines category.
Daniels’ enormous talent and early career accomplishments suggest that he can’t be counted even in his debut. That said, the challenge before him in AFT Production Twins isn’t any less daunting than in AFT Singles.
Like Daniels, Dan Bromley (No. 62 Memphis Shades/Vinson Construction Yamaha MT-07) and Dalton Gauthier (No. 79 D&D Cycles/Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson XG750R) are past AFT Singles champions with sterling TT records, to go along with considerably more seat time on a twin.
Additionally, Cory Texter (No. 65 G&G Racing/Roof Systems Yamaha MT-07), Chad Cose (No. 49 Voodoo Ranger/Roof Systems Harley-Davidson XG750R), Ben Lowe (No. 25 Mission Roof Systems Harley-Davidson XG750R), and Johnny Lewis (No. 10 Moto Anatomy X Powered by Royal Enfield Twins FT) are all excellent all-around motorcycle racers with the skills to shine under the lights come Saturday night.
Beyond the incredible Super TT action, Atlanta Motor Speedway will host live music, KTM demo rides, beer and food vendors and offer free parking, including designated paved motorcycle parking, for Progressive AFT fans. Additionally, all fans in attendance will be entered to win a guitar autographed by rock band Blackberry Smoke.
Spectator safety remains the top priority and Progressive AFT has worked closely with local health and government officials toward those ends. For more on the specific precautions being undertaken, please consult the Progressive AFT Events Health & Safety FAQ.
Tickets are available for purchase now at https://store.americanflattrack.com/ebooking/ticket/view/id/3327, including the American Super Ticket Package, which includes a Premium General Admission ticket and Premier Parking for the Atlanta Super TT along with a two-day General Admission ticket and Premier Parking for MotoAmerica at Michelin Road Atlanta on Saturday and Sunday for $99. A variety of ticket options are available, starting at $25 in advance (children 12 and under free with the purchase of an adult admission). The Premium GA tickets are selling fast with Section 146 already sold out.
Gates will open for fans at 4:00 p.m. ET/1:00 p.m. PT with Opening Ceremonies set to begin at 7:00 p.m. ET/4:00 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 Yamaha Atlanta Super TT will air on NBCSN on Sunday, May 2, starting at 10:30 p.m. ET/7:30 p.m. PT. The broadcast will include exclusive features, cutting-edge aerial drone and onboard footage and the expert commentary of former Grand National Champion Brad Baker.
For more information on Progressive AFT visit https://www.americanflattrack.com.
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How to Watch
NBCSN and TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold are the official homes for coverage of Progressive American Flat Track. For the 2021 season, NBCSN’s coverage of Progressive AFT remains in highly-coveted programming, the complete schedule for which can be viewed at http://www.americanflattrack.com/events-nbcsn/. TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold – the most-robust motorsports offering in the digital marketplace – is a cornerstone of Progressive AFT’s digital strategy, providing live streaming coverage of every event and maintaining an active archive of all AFT content.
About Progressive American Flat Track
Progressive American 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, Fla., the series is highly regarded as the most competitive form of dirt track motorcycle racing on the globe. For more information on Progressive American Flat Track, please visit http://www.americanflattrack.com, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, check us out on Instagram, live stream the events with TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold and catch all the Progressive American Flat Track racing action on NBCSN.