Adam has been a race fan since the first time he went through the tunnel under the Daytona International Speedway more than 30 years ago. He has had the privilege of traveling to races all across the state of Florida (as well as one race in Ohio), watching nearly everything with a motor compete for fame and glory, as well as participating in various racing schools to get the feel of what racecar drivers go through every week.
Adam spent several years covering motorsports for Examiner.com., where he had the opportunity to see the racing world from behind the scenes as well as the grandstands. He invites everyone to follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus, and looks forward to sharing his enthusiasm for all things racing with the readers of SpeedwayDigest.com.
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It was a night of firsts as Progressive American Flat Track enjoyed an epic evening of racing at the Mission Red Mile I presented by Indian Motorcycle of Lexington in Lexington, Kentucky.
Following 14 minutes and two laps of nail-biting action in front of the massive Red Mile crowd, Mission SuperTwins presented by S&S Cycle rookie Dallas Daniels (No. 32 Estenson Racing Yamaha MT-07 DT) officially added his name to the exclusive list of premier-class Main Event winners.
But prior to Daniels’ exhilaration, it was heartbreak for teammate JD Beach (No. 95 Estenson Racing Yamaha MT-07 DT). Beach had established himself the rider to beat in the lead-up to the Main, but he was unlucky to be forced out by mechanical issues a couple minutes into the race.
That left reigning champion Jared Mees (No. 1 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750), Daniels, and Mission Production Twins Challenge entrant James Rispoli (No. 43 Wally Brown Racing/Haversack KTM 890 Duke) to battle it out in the lead pack.
The trend of heartbreak continued a couple of minutes later when the machine of Bronson Bauman (No. 37 Latus Motors Racing Harley-Davidson XG750R) dumped oil on the circuit while running fourth, forcing a red flag stoppage near half-distance.
The race resumed with Mees, Daniels, and Rispoli sitting 1-2-3, and Brandon Robinson (No. 44 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750) joining the lead group in fourth. While Rispoli took a peak on a few occasions, it was Mees and Daniels who traded back first and second for the remainder of the contest.
Mees lined up Daniels and made what he hoped would be the race’s decisive maneuver entering Turn 3 for the final time. He pulled it off perfectly and seemed destined to keep his perfect Red Mile streak intact, right up until the final moment when Daniels blasted by at the stripe to steal away the win by 0.008 seconds.
The victory was not only Daniels’ first in the premier class, it was also Yamaha’s first on a Mile going all the way back to Kenny Roberts’ legendary victory aboard the TZ750 at the 1975 Indy Mile. Daniels also became the first rookie to win in the premier class since Mikey Rush won at Daytona in 2007 and the first rookie to win on a Mile since Scott Parker did so at Indy in 1979.
“I can’t believe I won a Grand National,” Daniels said. “I’ve been dreaming of this my whole life. It’s been a long road for me and the team. Those guys have worked their butts off. It’s been a long road since they started, and I know this is so rewarding for them.
“Taking my dad on that victory lap… I’ve been talking about that since I was like eight years old. We did it… It’s awesome!”
Rispoli held on for third to become the first Mission Production Twins Challenge rider to land on the Mission SuperTwins podium and add to what was already an incredible debut for the WBR KTM.
Robinson came home fourth, followed by another Mission Production Twins Challenge pilot in Ben Lowe (No. 25 Mission Foods/Roof Systems Yamaha MT-07) to complete the top five.
Jarod Vanderkooi (No. 20 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750) was sixth, followed by an uncharacteristically quiet Briar Bauman (No. 3 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750). Davis Fisher (No. 67 Bob Lanphere’s BMC Racing Indian FTR750), Jesse Janisch (No. 33 Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson XG750R), and Robert Pearson (No. 27 Rackley Racing/John Franklin Indian FTR750) rounded out the top ten.
Mission Production Twins presented by Vance & Hines
If anyone forgot just how dominant James Rispoli (No. 43 Wally Brown Racing/Haversack KTM 890 Duke) was at times when he won the 2020 Mission Production Twins presented by Vance & Hines championship, he provided a most compelling reminder on Saturday night.
Rispoli made his return to the class at the Red Mile to debut the WBR KTM 890 Duke and did so in style. He not only made the bike a winner, he did so in runaway fashion, leading from start to finish.
The only rider who even managed to keep him honest was Jesse Janisch (No. 33 Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson XG750R). Janisch clung on behind him just outside the draft, but he never managed to present a realistic challenge to Rispoli’s position at the front.
After claiming the win, Rispoli said, “The Wally Brown Racing team has a wealth of experience. They’re smart guys. We took the common sense route and they built a phenomenal package. KTM built a great platform, but these guys found a way to get that horsepower to the ground. I’m so pumped. I’m stoked to return to Mission Production Twins, and to win? I’m stoked.”
While Rispoli may have had a drama-free run to victory, the battle for the final spot on the podium was most entertaining. A tight five-rider pack made up of the returning Michael Rush (No. 15 Hellipower Racing/Las Vegas Harley-Davidson XG750R), Ryan Varnes (No. 68 Schaeffer’s Motorsports/Rausch Fuel & Oil KTM 890 Duke), Ben Lowe (No. 25 Mission Foods/Roof Systems Yamaha MT-07), Cory Texter (No. 1 G&G Racing/Yamaha Racing Yamaha MT-07), and Nick Armstrong (No. 60 Competitive Racing Frames/Lessley Brothers Yamaha MT-07).
Among a great deal of shuffling, points leader Armstrong systematically made his way from seventh to third, but went off the groove and dropped right back to seventh, erasing all his hard work.
Defending champion Texter did what he does and emerged late as he and Lowe scrapped for third over the final two laps. Ultimately, Texter took the position by 0.122 to further a three-race podium streak. However, he’s still three points back of Armstrong in the championship chase after Armstrong clawed his way back up to fifth at the flag.
Varnes finished sixth with Rush taking seventh, a welcome result in his return ride after suffering a serious leg injury in last year’s finale.
Parts Unlimited AFT Singles presented by KICKER
Combining the Parts Unlimited AFT Singles presented by KICKER class and a big Mile racetrack is typically the recipe for an ultra-tight pack war. Saturday’s showdown was no exception.
As many as eight riders were in with a shot for victory deep into the race before a couple of them went off the groove, leaving a six-rider shootout on the race’s final lap.
The on-form Morgen Mischler (No. 13 American Honda/Progressive Insurance CRF450R) did his best to control the chaotic affair from the front and it paid off with a 0.053 seconds margin of victory.
While Mischler regularly traded the lead with teammate Dalton Gauthier (No. 79 American Honda/Progressive Insurance CRF450R) for much of the contest, the final sprint came down to him, title rival Kody Kopp (No. 12 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 450 SX-FFE), and Trent Lowe (No. 48 Mission Foods/Al Lamb’s Dallas Honda CRF450R).
Mischler opened the final lap in the lead and made the most of his Honda’s horsepower to just fend off his challengers.
The win was Mischler’s first ever on a Mile as he continues to increasingly prove himself a well-rounded title contender. He said, “The puzzle pieces are fitting, and I see us just getting better with everything the team has been putting into it. For me, it’s just a matter of me doing my job.”
Despite just missing out on the win, Kopp continues to lead the championship on the strength of an early season that has seen him finish no worse than second.
Kopp’s teammate Max Whale (No. 18 Red Bull KTM Factory Racing 450 SX-FFE), finished off the podium for the first time this season with a fourth-place effort. Gauthier, who is dealing with a partially torn ACL and MCL finished fifth, while Trevor Brunner (No. 21 Estenson Racing Yamaha YZ450F) finished sixth, just 0.420 seconds off the win, despite being forced to start from the back of the pack after using a provisional start to earn a spot in the Main.
The Mission Red Mile I will premiere on FS1 on Sunday, June 5, at 10:00 p.m. ET/7:00 p.m. PT, including exclusive features, cutting-edge aerial drone and onboard footage, and expert commentary.
Progressive AFT will be back on track at the Red Mile today to conclude the Mission Red Mile doubleheader. Gates will open for fans at 3:00 p.m. ET/12:00 p.m. PT with Opening Ceremonies scheduled to begin at 7:00 p.m. ET/4:00 p.m. PT ahead of the evening’s Main Event program. Secure your tickets now at https://store.americanflattrack.com/ebooking/ticket/view/id/3723/.
You can catch the livestream of all the weekend’s racing activities on FansChoice.tv. FansChoice.tv provides free-to-view livestreaming of Practice and Qualifying. FansChoice.tv subscribers will then be able to watch the drama unfold from Opening Ceremonies through the Semis, Main Events, and podium celebrations. FansChoice.tv offers two subscription options, granting unlimited access to premium AFT content. Monthly subscriptions start at just $7.99, while a six-month subscription is available for $44.99.
For more information on Progressive AFT visit https://www.americanflattrack.com.
To score the latest gear for the Progressive American Flat Track fan, visit our official merchandise store at https://store.americanflattrack.com.
How to Watch:
FOX Sports and FansChoice.tv are the official homes for coverage of Progressive American Flat Track. For the 2022 season, all races will premiere in one-hour telecasts on FS1 during highly desirable weekend time slots. The complete schedule can be viewed at https://www.americanflattrack.com/events-foxsports. FansChoice.tv provides livestreaming coverage of every Progressive AFT round can watch livestreaming coverage of every Progressive AFT round at http://www.FansChoice.tv.
Matt Christensen won his first race in Formula 4 United States Championship Powered by Honda (F4 U.S.) competition on Saturday afternoon in Race 1 at Road America.
After rolling off second in his No. 45 Velocity Racing Development Ligier JS F4, Christensen initially fell in line behind Lochie Hughes in the No. 6 Jay Howard Driver Development / CSU One Cure / Lucas Oil / Pelican Ligier JS F4. Christensen kept the pressure on Hughes and was able to overtake the top spot before the completion of lap 1.
After a brief safety car period, the field was restacked to give another chance at the top spot. Christensen held the lead early, but a four-way battle ensued and it was Hughes who overtook the point position before completing lap 4.
As the laps ticked by, Christensen continued to apply the pressure on Hughes. It all came down to the last lap as the two raced side-by-side and Christensen ultimately made the pass on Hughes in Turn 13 to lead the field to the checkered flag.
“It was a really good fight with Lochie,” said Christensen as he climbed from the car. “I got him at the start in Turn 5 on lap 1, and then he passed me back. Then he pulled a little gap, then like he said he started to make mistakes and I just bounced him on the mistakes and caught him and then made that last lap pass.”
Alex Berg (No. 08 Doran-Kroll Competition Ligier JS F4) finished third, earning his second podium finish of the season, followed by Nicholas Rivers (No. 24 Velocity Racing Development Ligier JS F4) in fourth and Louka St-Jean (No. 98 Jay Howard Driver Development / CSU One Cure / Lucas Oil / Pelican Ligier JS F4) in fifth.
Full results are available here: F4 U.S. Official Results – Race 1 at Road America
F4 U.S. returns to the track tomorrow for Race 2 at 10:40 a.m. CT, followed by Race 3 at 4:20 p.m. CT. A live feed of the Road America Jumbotron is available on SpeedTour TV’s YouTube page at YouTube.com/SpeedTourTV, and will air both races on Sunday.
Raoul Hyman earned his second-career Formula Regional Americas Championship Powered by Honda win this afternoon at Road America. After leading practice and qualifying with his No. 27 Bethesda Holdings Limited / Solomon Capital Enterprises / Oaklands / Kinross Ligier JS F3, Hyman continued his weekend with a dominating performance in Race 1.
“It wasn’t easy; it definitely wasn’t easy,” said Hyman following the race. “I’m really happy to come away with a win. I can’t take any of the credit; the team has done an amazing job. The pace we’ve had all weekend—you can see it across all three cars—but I can’t do that if they don’t put in the work and do an amazing job in terms of the setup. A huge thanks to TJ Speed [Motorsports] and I hope we can keep going.”
The race got off to a rocky start as Nico Christodoulou (No. 22 Velocity Racing Development Ligier JS F3) stalled from the second position. With cars scrambling to the left and right, Hayden Bowlsbey (No. 3 Save22 / Southern Linac LLC / IGY6 Motorsports Ligier JS F3) made contact with Christodoulou to bring out the safety car.
The race returned to green on lap 3 with the field restacked. Hyman and Dylan Tavella (No. 14 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsports Ligier JS F3) took off, while Jason Alder (No. 77 Drive for Diabetes Awareness / HAKUN / TJ Speed Motorsports Ligier JS F3), Ryan Yardley (No. 78 Crosslink Kiwi Motorsport Ligier JS F3) and Mac Clark (No. 25 Future Star Racing Ligier JS F3) jockeyed for the third position. Clark pushed his Hankook Tires to the limit, ultimately leaving Yardley and Alder to battle it out.
At the checkered flag, Hyman led Tavella, Yardley, Alder and Nick Persing (No. 29 OPI Commercial Builders / TJ Speed Motorsports Ligier JS F3) to the finish line.
Full results are available here: FR Americas Official Results – Race 1 at Road America
FR Americas returns to the track tomorrow for Race 2 at 9:05 a.m. CT, followed by Race 3 at 1:55 p.m. CT. A live feed of the Road America Jumbotron is available on SpeedTour TV’s YouTube page at YouTube.com/SpeedTourTV, and will air both races on Sunday.
Extreme E is delighted to have secured the inaugural Environmental Sustainbility Award at this year’s coveted Sport Industry Awards.
The Sport Industry Awards, which took place on Thursday 12 May 2022 at Evolution London, included nominees from the highest echelons of the global sports industry. The occasion celebrated the immense work carried out across the sector towards social change and producing campaigns with ingenious creative spark while delivering world-leading events.
As a sport that is built around social purpose, but with racing at its core, Extreme E utilises its platform to promote electrification, sustainability, and gender equality with the aim of driving real change.
The electric off-road racing Championship was crowned the first winners of Sport Industry’s Environmental Sustainability Award. New for 2022, this award recognises organisations that are delivering environmental benefits through sport.
Alejandro Agag, Founder and CEO of Extreme E, said: “It is a tremendous honour to be the recipient of the first ever Environmental Sustainability Award. It gives real recognition to everyone who has helped to play a part in launching and delivering our pioneering series – it is great to see our visions from the very beginning become a reality. We cannot wait to go even further in raising awareness of the climate crisis and how to deliver environmental change.
“To be among such inspiring finalists demonstrated the level of hard work that Extreme E, our teams, and partners have all put into raising awareness of environmental issues, promoting sustainable solutions and gender equality, whilst delivering world class sporting entertainment.”
Ali Russell, Chief Marketing Officer at Extreme E, added: “Receiving the Environmental Sustainability Award is a proud moment for our championship. We could not have achieved this without the support of our drivers, teams and partners so I must pay tribute to them upon receiving such an accolade.
“I am looking forward to Extreme E growing even further in the years to come as we continue to raise awareness across the world of the critical environmental issues facing our planet.”
The sport for purpose series was also shortlisted for prestigious honours in both the Cutting Edge and Sport Organisation of the Year awards, alongside industry leaders such as SailGP, the ECB, Sky Sports and Vodafone.
Racing in remote locations damaged by climate change or human interference, the Extreme E strives to maximise awareness around critical issues, whilst minimising the environmental impact. In February, the innovative series published its Season 1 Sustainabilty Report in conjunction with Official Innovation Partner EY, which outlines the details of the series’ journey to becoming net zero.
Building on the success of its inaugural season in 2021, Extreme E Season 2 ‘The Race for the Planet’ kicked off in NEOM, Saudi Arabia, on 19-20 February. Working with Aurora and other creative partners, Extreme E will continue to deliver a graphical storytelling concept that combines sport and scientific stories to highlight the planet's situation.
The upcoming double-header in Sardinia, Italy, this July will bring to viewers double the racing and ultimately, double the impact in Extreme E’s race to protect the planet.
To learn more about Extreme E, visit - www.Extreme-E.com
Following the announcement that 2022 Kentucky Derby winner Rich Strike will not be running in the 147th Preakness Stakes in Baltimore, Animal Wellness Action executive director Marty Irby issued the following statement:
“We applaud the Rich Strike team for putting the welfare of the horse first and choosing not to run in the 147th Preakness Stakes. Their decision to 'give him more recovery time and rest' is refreshing to see, and we have no doubt that Rich Strike will go down in the history books as one of the most famous American racehorses of all time."
"In addition, we were elated to learn the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission saw the blood test results of both Rich Strike, and the Kentucky Oaks winner came back clean, free from any illegal drugs, and that's a tremendous step in the right direction. We hope to see a safe and drug free Preakness in Baltimore."
(Courtesy of NHRA Communications)