Mees Leads Charge to Hometown Crowd at Williams Grove
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (September 8, 2020) - A number of the world’s elite dirt trackers are heading home this weekend, as American Flat Track powers into flat track hotbed Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, for the Williams Grove Half-Mile I & II. The added motivation of performing in front of the home fans couldn’t come at a better time with the series just days removed from an epic Springfield tripleheader.
AFT SuperTwins presented by Vance & Hines title leader Jared Mees (No. 9 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750) will welcome the boost at Williams Grove Speedway, which is located about an hour away from his childhood home. Mees enters the weekend in typical (for him) form, boasting a perfect podium record on the season, with three wins, two seconds, and a third to his credit.
But as strong as he’s been in 2020, he’ll be pit up against several other leading contenders who also call Pennsylvania home. Chief among them is California transplant and reigning Grand National Champion Briar Bauman (No. 1 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750). Bauman got the better of Mees in straight fights at Williams Grove the past two seasons and could use another such showing (or two) to help bring balance to their developing championship fight.
Fourth-ranked Brandon Robinson (No. 44 HCRR Racing/Ben Evans Racing Indian FTR750) is from nearby Oxford, PA. He’s coming off his best result of the season where he narrowly missed edging Mees to the checkered flag at Springfield by a scant 0.043-second margin.
A number of the premier category’s more recent graduates will also be looking to impress the home fans, including the likes of Brandon Price (No. 92 Roof Systems of Dallas, Texas Indian FTR750), Dalton Gauthier (No. 79 Harley-Davidson/Vance & Hines XG750R Rev X) and Dan Bromley (No. 62 Roof Systems of Dallas, Texas Indian FTR750).
Perhaps no rider could use some home cooking more than native Pennsylvanian Shayna Texter (No. 52 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 450 SX-F). The winningest rider in AFT Singles presented by Russ Brown Motorcycle Attorneys history, Texter’s hopes to at last secure a national #1 would improve substantially if she were to add a couple more wins to her record tally this weekend.
Texter currently sits sixth in the AFT Singles points standings with a diverse group of riders and machines -- Henry Wiles (No. 17 RMR Honda/Honda Talon CRF450R), Dallas Daniels (No. 32 Estenson Racing Yamaha YZ450F) and Max Whale (No. 18 Coondoo Cattle Co./Australian Road Services Kawasaki KX450F) -- currently holding down the top three positions.
Texter’s older brother, Cory Texter (No. 1 G&G Racing/Roof Systems Yamaha MT-07), is in something of a similar position as he fights to defend his AFT Production Twins crown. Texter is currently just one point out of second position with finishes of first, second, third, fourth, fifth, and sixth on the season.
However, he, second-ranked Ben Lowe (No. 25 Roof Systems of Dallas/Bruce Lowe Excavating Yamaha MT-07), and fellow Pennsylvanian Ryan Varnes (No. 68 RVR/RoyBuilt Don’s Kawasaki Ninja 650) need to be careful to not allow James Rispoli (No. 43 Latus Motors Racing Harley-Davidson XG750R) to run away with the class championship.
‘The Rocket’ has already built up 19 points of padding due to his consistent speed, which has earned him five top-two finishes on the year, including wins in two of the last three races.
As always, spectator safety has been placed at a premium and AFT has worked closely with local health and government officials toward those ends. For more on the specific precautions being undertaken, please consult the AFT Events Health & Safety FAQ.
Tickets have been limited to 50% capacity in order to promote a safe atmosphere and allow for proper social distancing and can be purchased at https://store.americanflattrack.com/ebooking/ticket/view/id/3130/#selectTicket. A $10 multi-day discount is available for each pair of Friday/Saturday General Admission tickets purchased in advance.
Premium Frontstretch General Admission Grandstand tickets are $35 in advance (kids 12 and under are free with the purchase of adult admission) and Backstretch General Admission tickets are $25 in advance (all ages).
Gates will open for fans on both Friday and Saturday at 3:00 p.m. ET/12:00 p.m. PT with the Main Event programs set to begin at 7:45 p.m. ET/4:45 p.m. PT. Live coverage of the entire weekend’s racing activities will be available on any device for less than $1 per event via TrackPass on NBC Sports Gold.
The Williams Grove Half-Mile I will air on NBCSN on Wednesday, September 23, at 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT, and the Williams Grove Half-Mile II will air on NBCSN on Saturday, September 26, at 6:00 p.m. ET/3:00 p.m. PT. The broadcasts will include exclusive features, cutting-edge aerial drone and onboard footage, and the expert commentary of AFT legend Chris Carr.