Rain caused an hour’s delay to the race, but once the action started it Harley-Davidson’s Kenny Coolbeth leading the first five laps. After that, however, Mees took over and he was never headed, riding his Johnny Goad-prepared Harley to a convincing victory.
“There is absolutely no feeling like winning a Grand National dirt track race. It is just the greatest feeling there is,” said Mees.
Latus Harley-Davidson/Renton Honda’s Joe Kopp, who is still trying to shake off the effects of his Lake Odessa spill, worked his way up from a slow start to challenge Mees at the end. Kopp was never able to get close enough to make the pass though and settled for a hard-earned second.
Defending Grand National Champion Chris Carr got a great start, but was unable to keep his Quality Checked Certified Pre-Owned Ford-backed Harley in the hunt. A very un-Carr like performance saw the points leader slide deep into the pack as one after another rider stormed around him.
A slow start had the Screamin’ Eagle Moroney’s Harley-Davidson-backed Bryan Smith buried in 10th place, but Smith has become Mr. Consistent and clawed his way back into contention. The last half of the race he was locked into a fierce battle with Coziahr Harley-Davidson/National Cycle’s Johnny Murphree and their battle carried them past Coolbeth. The pair traded third several times before Smith locked up the final podium spot.
Another local rider, SuperTrap/Doc’ Harley-Davidson’s Mike Hacker was also moving forward and he passed Coolbeth on the last lap for fifth. After six rounds of the 13-race series, Smith and Carr are tied with 70 points, holding a five-point lead over Kenny Coolbeth. Rich King is another five back with Mees just one behind King.