Latus Harley-Davidson/Jones Powersports’ Joe Kopp came from down in the field to collect his first win of 2005 during round eight of the AMA Ford Quality Checked Flat Track Championship at the Darke County Fairgrounds in Greenville, Ohio, on July 23.
The 2000 AMA Grand National Champion got the holeshot at the start of the 25-lap National, but the race was red-flagged after Dominic Beaulac and Dan Gedeon went down in the first turn. On the restart, Kopp was third, but he slipped to fourth, behind a charging J.R. Schnabel, who passed Henry Wiles for the lead early. Kopp then found his rhythm and worked back past, Schnabel after Wiles fell back, to pursue reigning AMA Ford Quality Checked Flat Track Champion Chris Carr. Kopp passed Carr on lap 12 and was never headed after that. The Ford Quality Checked Certified Pre-owned Racing-backed Carr also fell prey to Mid-America Harley-Davidson/Jones Powersports’ Kenny Coolbeth, his closest competitor in the series points standings, on lap 14, the move setting the podium.
Michigander Wiles put together the best 750 ride of his young career to finish fourth, with Jared Mees completing the top five.
By beating Carr to the line, Coolbeth ate into Carr’s series points lead. Carr still leads Coolbeth by 13, 137-124, with Kopp moving to third place, ahead of Mees. Kopp has 106 points.