LIMA, Ohio (June 26, 2010) – When Henry Wiles gets on a roll the best his competitors can hope for is to pick up the scraps he leaves on the table. Saturday night, before a packed house at the Allen County Fairgrounds, Wiles put on an exhibition of mastery on Lima’s cushion half mile that people will be talking about for years. The KK Motorcycle Supply/Mike & Eddie Atkins Harley-Davidson-mounted rider ran away and hid from the rest of the 18-rider field, lapping all the way up to ninth-place, which happened to be points leader Joe Kopp.
The victory, Wiles’ second straight, and third of the season, moved him into a tie with Kopp atop the K&N Filters AMA Pro Grand National standings after seven rounds.
Sammy Halbert on the King Kustoms/KK Motorcycle Supply Harley, kept Wiles in sight for a few laps, but he too had to finally submit to Wiles’ relentless pace and settle for second, 6.564 seconds behind the winner.
Another big story at Lima was the performance turned in by Matt Weidman. The White’s Harley-Davidson/SNIP/Silkolene Harley-Davidson rider broke out of a tight four-way battle for third between himself, Monster Energy Kawasaki’s Bryan Smith, Zanotti Racing’s Jake Johnson and defending champ Jared Mees on the Rogers Lake Racing/Blue Springs Harley-Davidson. Weidman pulled away (racing his B-bike after his A-bike blew up in practice) to finish third by almost two seconds over Smith. It marked the first Grand National podium for the promising young rider out of New York.
The victory is putting to rest the notion that Wiles is a Singles specialist. “I think for anyone who saw what happened here tonight, they won’t be saying that for much longer,” Wiles said. “It was one of those nights where everything came together. I started seeing lapped riders and I was like, ‘Whoa, this isn’t a Heat race, these are the best riders out here.’ Hopefully we can keep this momentum going. It’s great to take a share of the points lead and hopefully I can get it all to myself at the next race.”
Washington state’s Brad Baker bounced back from a crash last weekend in Gas City, to win the Motorcycle-Superstore.com Pro Singles final on his Rod Lake/Mike Velasco/Brothers Powersports Honda. Like Wiles, Baker dominated the race, leading every lap and pulling away to a 3.5-second margin of victory over Chaz Springsteen. Michael Labelle was third.
It marked the second Pro Singles win of the year for Baker and moved him past James Rispoli for second in the standings.
The series next moves to Lake Odessa, Michigan, and I-96 Speedway on July 10.