After winning the 2003 and 2004 editions of the Springfield TT, Memphis Shades/Parts Unlimited’s J.R. Schnabel came to the rodeo arena at the Illinois State Fairgrounds with the pressure of expecting nothing less than the best from himself and knowing that a win would vault him right back into the AMA Ford Quality Checked Flat Track Championship points chase. When the 25-lap main event was over, Schnabel was the best yet again, capturing his second consecutive Springfield TT win and his fourth consecutive Springfield rodeo arena win (Schnabel has also claimed the last two Springfield Short Tracksl).
Schnabel got the holeshot in the 25-lap, 18-rider final and led it the whole way, pursued by 2004 Peoria TT winner Henry Wiles and 2005 Daytona Short Track winner Jake Johnson. That’s how they ended up on the podium. Schnabel winning by comfortable margin while Wiles and Johnson battled closely for most of the race.
Johnson’s runner-up finish allowed him to reclaim the series points lead over defending series champion Chris Carr, who finished 13th. Johnson now leads Carr, 49-48. No doubt Carr will have a strong chance at swinging the points back into his favor when the series heads across the fairgrounds property to the Springfield Mile tomorrow.
Illinois State Fairgrounds
Results: May 28, 2005 (Round 3 of 17)
GRAND NATIONAL (25 laps; 18 riders): 1. J.R. Schnabel (Yam); 2. Henry Wiles (Hon); 3. Jake Johnson (Suz); 4. Shaun Russell (Hon); 5. Nick Cummings (Hon); 6. Joe Kopp (KTM); 7. Johnny Murphree (Hon); 8. Kevin Varnes (Suz); 9. Jared Mees (Hon); 10. Bryan Bigelow (Hon); 11. Kenny Coolbeth (Hon); 12. Matt Burton (Yam); 13. Chris Carr (KTM); 14. Sam Halbert (Hon); 15. John Raun Wood (Hon); 16. Jethro Halbert (Hon); 17. Willie McCoy (KTM); 18. Tim Eades (Hon).
AMA FORD QUALITY CHECKED FLAT TRACK CHAMPIONSHIP SERIES POINTS STANDINGS (After 3 of 17 rounds): 1. Jake Johnson (49/1 win); 2. Chris Carr (48/1 win); 33. Joe Kopp (39); 4. Kenny Coolbeth (37); 5. Nick Cummings (36); 6. Kevin Varnes (35)/Henry Wiles 35); 8. J.R. Schnabel (33/1 win); 9. Shaun Russell (27); 10. (TIE) Bryan Smith (24)/Bryan Bigelow (24); 12 (TIE) Jared Mees (23)/Johnny Murphree (23); 14. John Raun Wood (19); 15. Willie McCoy (13); 16. Chris Hart(12); 17. (TIE) Matt Burton (7)/Geo Roeder II (7); 19. (TIE) Rich King (6)/Greg Tysor (6).