Friday, 12 June 2015
X Games Flat Track Main
Flat track (sponsored and facilitated by Harley-Davidson) was the opening sport of last week's X Games in Austin, Texas. If you don't know much about the X Games, it is extreme sports Olympics, a made for TV spectacular and hugely popular.
Motorcycles are often featured, but normally supercross, freestyle and step-up (high jump for 450s). This is a first for flat track and is, I've heard, a four-year deal. I was in Sacramento at the GNC race a few days before the X Games and the whole of the sport was very excited about the opportunity.
The track was built for the event, as rough as a rhino's rump, and about 3/8 of a mile in length. Heavy rains the week before was blamed for the track's poor condition.
The start used an MX-style dropping metal gate, like the Superprestigio does. The heavy twins didn't seem to like it.
One of the most impressive things from a spectating amateur racer's point of view (mine) was how quickly fallen riders got off the track. It was as if a sniper was in the crowd and the TV producers told the riders that if they held up the banjo-string-tight TV schedule they'd get a dum-dum in the back of the head.
There was just one class of invited riders, 24 pros (including Daytona 200 winner, Danny Eslick), trying to qualify for a 12-rider main. This video the main and there are very few surprises in the line-up - this is the line-up, by the way, not the result.
Jared Mees HD
Kenny Coolbeth HD
Bryan Smith Kaw
Mikey Martin Tri
Johnny Lewis Duc
Sammy Halbert Kaw
Briar Bauman Kaw
Brad Baker HD
Jake Johnson HD
Doug Lawrence HD
Brandon Robinson Tri
Mick Kirkness HD
Enjoy the 20-lapper. Make sure you watch right to the flag... G