History was made under the lights at Daytona International Speedway as the American Flat Track series entered its new era at the Harley-Davidson DAYTONA TT presented by Politis & Matovina. Jared Mees took home a dominant AFT Twins presented by Vance & Hines win to become the first rider to win an American Flat Track race on the Indian Motorcycle Scout FTR750.
The No. 9 Indian Motorcycle Rogers Racing FTR750 rider’s big win at the 2017 season opener also marked the first time that a rider won a TT on twin in nearly 34 years, when fellow National No. 9 rider Jay Springsteen won at the Peoria TT in 1983.
“You don’t know how special it is to win the first Daytona TT on the Indian,” Mees said. “I’m going to go down in the record books as the first to win on the Indian. I’m so excited just for my entire team and the hard work that everybody put in. It’s unbelievable what we all went through. Indian Motorcycle did an outstanding job.”
The win also marked a personal record as Mees’ first TT win. It also served as personal redemption as Mees gets his run at recapturing the No. 1 plate off to a good start.
Although it’s a new era for flat track, it was the usual suspects. Mees’ rival and fellow Indian Wrecking Crew rider Bryan Smith finished second on the No. 1 Indian Motorcycle Racing backed by Allstate FTR750. Although it was not a win, the reigning Champ was happy to leave Daytona right on Mees’ heels.
“There was a lot of pressure after this race,” Smith said. “Like Jared said, it’s like, ‘oh yeah, we gotta race next weekend too.’ There was so much focus on this weekend and especially us having a new bike and a new team. So second place at a TT in Daytona. I’m happy.”
Joining the Indian Motorcycle duo on the podium was TT specialist Henry Wiles on the No. 17 DPC Racing Kawasaki Ninja 650.
The American Flat Track series heads north for the Atlanta Short Track at Dixie Speedway on Saturday, March 25. Atlanta fans will hear the roar of the AFT Twins class as they race on the red Georgia clay for the first time and will see if Jared Mees will secure his second win of the season. Also, spectators can witness the up-and-coming talent in the AFT Singles class, as they compete on the 3/8-mile track where Dalton Gauthier will contend to hold the lead in the point standings. Tickets for the Atlanta Short Track can be purchased at https://www.showclix.com/event/georgia-short-track.
Click here for coverage of the Harley-Davidson DAYTONA TT presented by Politis & Matovina video.