Jared Mees took his Rogers Racing Indian Scout FTR750 to a solid win in the opening race of the new era of American Flat Track, the 25-lap Harley-Davidson Daytona Twins TT at Daytona International Speedway on Thursday night. The win was the first success for Indian in the modern era, and gave them a head start in the 20-round 2017 AFT national championship against arch rival Harley-Davidson.
Victory in the first-ever Daytona TT was the 21st Grand National success for Mees, who also earned the Ohlins Award for the fastest Twins lap of the event on the brand new track.
Daytona marked the first time since the Peoria TT in 1983 that twins raced in a TT-style main event, although Daytona’s sole jump was very low key. There are three more TT events this season; another change to recent trends is the requirement that all Twins riders wear leathers rather than motocross gear in 2017.
Second overall in the feature race went to the second works Indian of veteran Bryan Smith, a lengthy nine seconds behind Mees in a race with significant attrition at the front. After starting on the outside of the second row of the grid on his Kawasaki KX-framed twin, Henry Wiles worked his way up to nab third at the finish, just behind Smith.
The best placing liquid-cooled Harley was fourth placed Jacob Johnson, just ahead of fifth overall Bronson Bauman on another Kawasaki Ninja twin.
“The race was great,” explained Mees from the podium. “We were making adjustments, after the heats and semis, and working things through, right until the last minute. I got a great start in the main, and I really think that was the biggest key. I just want to make a real shout out to our entire team. It’s the start we need.”
Reigning champ Smith said that he was happy with his Indian debut. “I really wanted to be the one to get that first win,” Smith admitted, “but we’re all still stoked for Indian. You have to be satisfied with the performance of a brand new bike, with all the unknowns.”
“That race was a lotta fun,” started Wiles, famous for his high fitness level and one of just a couple of riders at Daytona who stuffed a twin engine into an MX frame rather than a conventional ‘framer’ chassis. “We were shooting a little higher, but this was only the second time out with a new bike, and the other guys were a little faster in a straight line. I didn’t even know we were racing for second there at the end, so the podium is a good start.”
Former Canadian Flat Track champ Doug Lawrence was on hand to watch the event. “Fresh” isn’t sure when he will open his 2017 dirt track campaign, since he is focused on his new Suzuki Canada Mopar CSBK road racing program. Lawrence was testing at the Jennings G.P. venue earlier in the week aboard a Jon Cornwell-built older model GSX-R1000, and was happy to be back on track, as well as doing some bicycle training and motocross down south.
“I think the track was pretty good, they did the best with what they had,” said Lawrence of the new Daytona TT layout, pre-built under the just-used Monster Supercross track in the tri-oval area in front of the NASCAR pit lane. “It got to be one line, kind of hard to pass, but if they went the other way it would have been just too rough and gnarly.
“I don’t know if the track was too much fun to ride at the end there, so you had to be impressed with the Indians, and they basically ran what they had been testing last year. Obviously, it was tougher for the Harley guys, and they had their issues.
“You had to like the way the Indians worked,” continued Lawrence. “They had good power, but more than that they had super clean delivery, from really low down, in the tight stuff. That makes things easier. Now everyone has to get used to the new (AFT race) format, but that won’t take long.”
Dalton Gauthier won the 15-lap AFT Singles national aboard a Yamaha YZ450F, taking the lead on the brakes from Wyatt Anderson’s KTM in the last corner and holding on at the finish line. “Tomato Juice” Kolby Carlile was a close third on a brand new Honda, the top three covered by less than a second after a great dice up front.
Thursday, 16 March 2017 23:12 Published in News
(March 1, 2017)- Indian Motorcycle announced yesterday that its premier flat track race bike, the Scout FTR750, is available for purchase for $50,000 USD.
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 16:13 Published in Industry News
MINNEAPOLIS (February 21, 2017) — Welcome back, Americana. Indian Motorcycle®, America’s First Motorcycle Company, is proud to present the newly crafted Roadmaster Classic, a bike that reimagines what a heritage-inspired American touring motorcycle can be by blending iconic styling with the ultimate in modern touring amenities.
Wednesday, 22 February 2017 14:45 Published in Industry News
@indianmotocycle •(February 3, 2017)- Indian Motorcycle has announced its latest in dealer customization contests, Project Chieftain. Customized by the dealership’s internal team, 10 Indian dealerships created the most badass Chieftain bagger they could imagine.
Friday, 03 February 2017 09:26 Published in Industry News
@indianmotocycle • @ProFlatTrack •MINNEAPOLIS (September 26, 2016) — Indian Motorcycle®, America’s first motorcycle company, today announced the all-star members of its 2017 Wrecking Crew.
Monday, 26 September 2016 16:38 Published in Reports, Results & Points
@AMAProFlatTrack • @ama_racing •@indianmotocycle •MINNEAPOLIS (September 6, 2016) - Indian Motorcycle®, America's first motorcycle company, today confirmed that its all-new Indian Scout FTR750 race bike will make its racing debut on Sunday, September 25 at the Ramspur Winery Santa Rosa Mile AMA Pro Flat Track race in Santa Rosa, California.
Tuesday, 06 September 2016 13:47 Published in Industry News
@indianmotocycle •@SturgisRally •@AMAProFlatTrack •MINNEAPOLIS (August 8, 2016) — Indian Motorcycle®, America’s first motorcycle company, unleashed its all-new Indian Scout FTR750 flat track race bike in a place synonymous with the brand – the 76th annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.
Monday, 08 August 2016 11:25 Published in Products
@indianmotocycle • @AMAProFlatTrack •MINNEAPOLIS (June 14, 2016) — Indian Motorcycle®, America’s first motorcycle company, is proud to announce its re-entry into the AMA Pro Flat Track series with its first full-factory racing effort since the 1950s.
Tuesday, 14 June 2016 14:35 Published in News
Prior to the start of practice for the Super Hooligans class at the Superprestigio of the Americans at the Orleans Casino Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday afternoon, November 21, Roland Sands check out the paddock. Sands, one of the prime movers in the new Super Hooligans race division for street-based motorcycles above 750cc, entered a team of Indian twins and placed third overall in the "Super H" Final after a poor start. This is the final image in our selection of 15 shots from the afternoon and evening, initial running of the successful SuperPrestigio of the Americas Short Track event.
Sunday, 06 December 2015 20:40 Published in News