Harley-Davidson Wrecking Crew Rider Jared Mees Wins 2014 AMA Grand National Championship
POMONA, Calif. (October 11, 2014) – Harley-Davidson® Screamin’ Eagle® Factory Team rider Brad Baker closed out the AMA Pro Flat Track season with a third-place finish in the Grand National Twins main at the Law Tigers Flat Track Finals at L.A. County Fairplex as Harley-Davidson Wrecking Crew rider Jared Mees claimed the 2014 AMA Grand National championship.
Mees finished fourth on the Rogers Racing/Las Vegas H-D/Blue Springs H-D Harley-Davidson® XR750 to seal his second AMA Grand National championship, beating out Crosley Radios/Villa-Esparza Kawasaki rider Bryan Smith, who won the main, by just three points. Ramspur Winery/Lloyd Brothers Motorsports rider Jake Johnson finished second on a Harley-Davidson® XR750 motorcycle.
“It’s a heck of a day for our team,” said Mees, who also won the championship in 2012. “I knew Bryan would be racing hard today, and he took off and I started racing with Brad in those early laps, but then I thought I’d rather be alone out there and backed off and just raced smart to get the title. It really hasn’t sunk in yet. This team is great and has put me on a fast Harley-Davidson motorcycle all season.”
Baker won his heat race and started on the pole for the main. Smith took the lead at the start and quickly opened a gap over Baker and Mees. Johnson passed Mees for third place on lap 11, and he and Baker raced together until Johnson pulled ahead on lap 16. By then Smith had a lead of two seconds. Smith won by 1.457 seconds, with Baker 4.222 seconds behind at the finish.
“We had a great Harley-Davidson tonight and did well in the Dash,” said Baker, the defending AMA Grand National champion. “But on the first lap of the main I discovered my brake needed to be pumped to work, so I pretty much raced the main with no brakes, which is a struggle at this track. We’ve had super competition tonight and all season defending this Number 1 plate, and I’m proud to hand it over to Jared, but he knows we’ll be racing to get it back next season.”
Smith won the four-lap Dash for Cash bonus sprint race and started the Grand National Twins main 12 points behind Mees. The season ends with Mees leading the series with 279 points. Smith has 276 points. Johnson finishes third with 264 points, followed by Zanotti Racing/Moroneys H-D rider Kenny Coolbeth Jr. with 208 points. Baker placed fifth with 202 points.
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Harley-Davidson Motor Company produces custom, cruiser and touring motorcycles and offers a complete line of Harley-Davidson® motorcycle parts, accessories, riding gear and apparel, and general merchandise. For more information, visit Harley-Davidson's website at www.h-d.com.