American Flat Track top racing winner announce not to race again

Mees Works His Magic at Memphis Shades DuQuoin Mile

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (July 6, 2024) – Reigning Grand National Champion Jared Mees (No. 1 Rogers Racing/SDI Racing/Indian Motorcycle FTR750) demonstrated his Mile mastery yet again with a victory in Saturday night’s Memphis Shades DuQuoin Mile, Round 10 of the 2024 Progressive American Flat Track season, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing.

The Mission AFT SuperTwins Main Event at the “Magic Mile” was a race-long struggle of nerves and consistency. Mees attempted throughout to shake loose at the front while a three-rider pack of pursuers consisting of Dallas Daniels (No. 32 Estenson Racing Yamaha MT-07 DT), Brandon Price (No. 92 Memphis Shades/Sody Ent/OTBR Yamaha MT-07), and Briar Bauman (No. 3 Rick Ware Racing/KTM/Parts Plus KTM 790 Duke) did everything in their collective power to prevent that eventuality from playing out.

Daniels’ early strategy was to keep Mees corralled the best he could, continually running underneath him on corner entrance in hopes of limiting the Indian star’s opportunity to run with clear air in front of him.

Ultimately, the Estenson Racing ace was riding a tightrope in those efforts, and once Mees finally managed to maintain the lead for a full lap, he stretched open those crucial couple of tenths he needed to grasp a firm grip on the race. While he was unable to make an escape, the trio of contenders behind were also unable to draw back near enough to make any further assaults from that point forward.

That nearly changed when Dalton Gauthier’s (No. 79 Moto Anatomy X Powered by Royal Enfield 650) bike broke with less than a minute remaining, resulting in a thick cloud of smoke that settled in across the track. The lack of visibility forced Mees to check up ever so slightly, allowing Daniels to close from more than a half-second back to just 0.234 seconds with only two laps remaining to decide the winner.

Mees stayed calm and regrouped to eked back out to a 0.389-second margin of victory at the flag. While unable to pull off the upset, Daniels did execute his secondary mission of minimizing any damage done to his championship hopes by holding on for second.

The victory was the 75th of Mees’ record-breaking career, moving him to within three of second-placed Chris Carr. It also elevated his career Mile wins mark to 28, just one behind Carr for second in the discipline as well.

“It felt really good, just to feel good again, honestly,” Mees said. “The bike worked really good from the start, and we knew coming in here we were going to be a big player. The Rogers Racing/SDI Insulation/Progressive Insurance Indian Motorcycle was really strong tonight. Big thanks to everyone… So many great people are big contributors to our success. I had a lot of fun tonight, for sure.”

Price earned his second podium of the season in third, just 0.055 seconds back of Daniels, while Bauman finished fourth less than a quarter of a second further in arrears.

Davis Fisher (No. 67 Rackley Racing/Bob Lanphere’s BMC Racing Indian FTR750) edged rookies Declan Bender (No. 70 GOMR/ Trucking Indian FTR750) and Trevor Brunner (No. 21 Mission Foods/Zanotti Racing Indian FTR750) for fifth in a fight that took place approximately six seconds behind the lead group.

Meanwhile, Brandon Robinson (No. 44 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750) suffered a blow to his title efforts in eighth, with Cameron Smith (No. 34 RVR/KTM/Schaefer’s Motorsport KTM 790 Duke) and Jarod Vanderkooi (No. 20 JMC Motorsports/Fairway Ford Ohio Indian FTR750) rounding out the top ten.

The race served as a fitting conclusion the week-long celebration of motorcycle dirt track racing at the DuQuoin State Fairgrounds in DuQuoin, Illinois, that also saw the sport’s future stars crowned at the 2024 Mission Foods AMA Flat Track Grand Championship, sanctioned by the American Motorcyclist Association, before the greatest riders of today took centerstage to put on a show.

2018 Nicky Hayden AMA Flat Track Horizon Award winner Daniels now leads 2001 Nicky Hayden AMA Flat Track Horizon Award winner Mees 216 to 197 in the fight for the 2024 Grand National Championship. Robinson was relegated to third at 186.

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