Robinson Defeats Daniels in Bridgeport Thriller

240623 Robinson Defeats Daniels in Bridgeport Thriller [678]

DAYTONA BEACH, FL – June 23, 2024 – (Motor Sports NewsWire) – Brandon Robinson (No. 44 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750) served up a timely reminder that remains a genuine contender for this season’s Grand National Championship with an inspired performance in the Arai Bridgeport Half-Mile presented by Drag Specialties, Round 8 of the 2024 Progressive American Flat Track season, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing.

And his victory at Bridgeport Speedway in Swedesboro, New Jersey, couldn’t have come under much more demanding circumstances, with Mission AFT SuperTwins title leader Dallas Daniels (No. 32 Estenson Racing Yamaha MT-07 DT) breathing down his neck and desperate to fight through after charging his way forward the bottom of the top ten.

Earlier, Daniels had made quick work of a big swath of riders to slot ahead of Briar Bauman (No. 3 Rick Ware Racing/KTM/Parts Plus KTM 790 Duke) and into fourth. Meanwhile, Robinson was busy clearing off in front as Jarod Vanderkooi (No. 20 JMC Motorsports/Fairway Ford Ohio Indian FTR750) and Jared Mees (No. 1 Rogers Racing/SDI Racing/Indian Motorcycle FTR750) scraped it out for second.

Once Daniels worked past Vanderkooi, he and Mees prodded each other forward, closing the gap back to first position in the process. Mees would eventually fall off that chase, but Daniels would not. He successfully reeled in Robinson and then slung his Estenson Racing Yamaha into first with approximately half of the Main Event still to go.

However, in his bid to break free in first, Daniels ran wide, providing Robinson with a golden opportunity to reclaim the position. Daniels proceeded to stalk the Mission Roof Systems rider from that point forward, but his intended quarry had an answer for every late-race attempt to snatch away the win.

Robinson’s triumph saw him become the first premier-class rider to claim a third win this season just as it reached its halfway point. It also catapulted him ahead of Mees and into second in the points, some 14 back of title leader Daniels (170-156).

Robinson, who originally hails from nearby Oxford, Pennsylvania, said, “This is awesome. That’s the stuff dreams are made of right there. It’s just awesome to have my parents, my grandparents, my mother-in-law, my wife’s family, and all our friends here. That means the world to me. This win is my favorite right now. A super huge thank you to Jerry Stinchfield with Roof Systems and Juan Gonzalez at Mission Foods. Without those guys, this program wouldn’t be possible… Third win of the season? Let’s keep this ball rolling.”

Mees managed to hold off Bauman to earn the final spot on the podium despite still riding at less than 100% after getting beaten up in a mountain bike crash suffered a little over a week earlier.

Vanderkooi was a late-race DNF, allowing Davis Fisher (No. 67 Rackley Racing/Bob Lanphere’s BMC Racing Indian FTR750) to break into the top five.

He was followed by Brandon Price (No. 92 Memphis Shades/Corbin/OTBR Yamaha MT-07), rookies Trevor Brunner (No. 21 Mission Foods/Zanotti Racing Indian FTR750) and Declan Bender (No. 70 GOMR/BriggsAuto.com/Martin Trucking Indian FTR750), and Bronson Bauman (No. 37 Fastrack Racing Mission Foods KTM 790 Duke).

Tenth place went to Dalton Gauthier (No. 79 Moto Anatomy X Powered by Royal Enfield 650), who added a second top-ten result to his stint with Royal Enfield after earning the squad its first premier-class podium last weekend.

Parts Unlimited AFT Singles presented by KICKER

There was hardly a moment to catch a breath while witnessing the latest masterpiece of double defending Parts Unlimited AFT Singles presented by KICKER champion Kody Kopp (No. 1 Rick Ware Racing/Parts Plus KTM 450 SX-F) take shape under the lights of Bridgeport Speedway.

Returning to a venue where he finished outside the top five a year ago, Kopp once again looked more like an interested observer than a potential winner for a significant portion of the contest. While the Rick Ware Racing ace spent much of his race swapping position with Trent Lowe (No. 48 American Honda/Mission Foods CRF450R) and James Ott (No. 19 1st Impressions Race Team Husqvarna FC450) over third, last year’s winner, Tom Drane (No. 59 Estenson Racing Yamaha YZ450F), traded haymakers and handlebars with Chase Saathoff (No. 88 JPG Motorsports Honda CRF450R) as they waged war for first.

But with two minutes remaining, Kopp turned up the heat and closed in on that fight. He then made his move to steal away the lead with less than a minute remaining and carried that momentum forward to a 0.703-second margin of victory over runner-up Drane.

The win was not only Kopp’s third in succession, it was the 20th of his Progressive AFT career, handing him sole possession of the all-time victory mark in the category.

He said, “That’s why we train through the week because that’s the hardest I’ve ever pushed on a flat track bike. I had a big moment when I was back in third watching Tom and Chase duke it out, and they were going at it. I thought I had no chance. I had a big moment and almost highsided. But this one is huge to come from that far back. Wow. Big thanks to my dad for always being there. This is an awesome one to get 20 career wins. And thanks to everyone behind me. This one means a lot to them and to me.”

Saathoff finished third less than a second off the win, while Ott and Lowe settled into fourth and fifth respectively after factoring into the podium mix until the waning stages of the race.

Logan Eisenhard (No. 66 Hannum’s Harley-Davidson KTM 450 SX-F) registered his third finish of sixth or better, while Tyler Raggio (No. 55 Raggio Racing/Sluggo Racing KTM 450 SX-F), Hunter Bauer (No. 24 Vinson Construction/American Harley-Davidson Yamaha YZ450F), Aiden RoosEvans (No. 26 FRA Trust/ATV’s and More Yamaha YZ450F), and Tarren Santero (No. 75 Vinson Construction/P&M Motorcycles Honda CRF450R) completed the top ten.

The rolling Kopp now boasts a commanding 33-point advantage over Saathoff (183-150) in his quest for an unprecedented third Parts Unlimited AFT Singles crown. Drane is another three points back in third with 147.

Next Up:

Progressive American Flat Track completes its run of three Half-Miles in as many weeks with the fabled Lima Half-Mile at the Allen County Fairgrounds in Lima, Ohio on Saturday, June 29. Visit https://www.tixr.com/groups/meespromotions/events/lima-half-mile-87016 to secure your tickets today.

For those who can’t catch the action from the circuit, FloRacing is the live streaming home of Progressive AFT. Sign up now and catch every second of the on-track action, from the first practice to the victory podium, at https://flosports.link/aft.

FOX Sports coverage of the Arai Bridgeport Half-Mile presented by Drag Specialties, featuring in-depth features and thrilling onboard cameras, will premiere on FS1 on Saturday, June 29, at 2:00 p.m. ET (11:00 a.m. PT).

For more information on Progressive AFT visit https://www.americanflattrack.com.

About Progressive American Flat Track: 

Progressive American Flat Track, sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing, is the world’s premier dirt track motorcycle racing series and one of the longest-running championships in the history of motorsports. Sanctioned by AMA Pro Racing in Daytona Beach, Fla., the series is highly regarded as the most competitive form of dirt track motorcycle racing on the globe. For more information on Progressive American Flat Track, please visit us on the web, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, check us out on Instagram and catch all the Progressive American Flat Track racing action on FOX Sports. 

Source: Progressive American Flat Track

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