Screamin’ Eagle/Harley-Davidson’s Kenny Coolbeth broke through with his first win of the season in the Canterbury Park Mile in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Coolbeth, who hadn’t won since last year’s Indy Mile, finished the first lap of the 15th round of the Grand National Championship in fifth place before beginning his march to the front.
The former Grand National Champion moved into fourth on the fourth lap, then third on lap eight after passing Jared Mees (Rogers Lake Racing/Blue Springs H-D/Rockysonline.com).
The pass for second came on the 11th of 25 laps when he dispatched Matt Weidman (GCR/White`s Harley Davidson).
Coolbeth was right on Zanotti Racing’s Jake Johnson (H-D) on the 14th lap and made the pass for the lead a lap later, quickly opening a lead.
For the final ten laps Coolbeth continued to stretch his advantage. At the flag it was 3.373 secs. over Johnson.
“This win has been a long time coming,” said Coolbeth. “The team has really been working hard and it finally all came together for us tonight. I’m never a fast-starter. I like to let the race settle in for a few laps, kind of see how it’s going to go. We were behind a little in the beginning but it didn’t matter. I had a really great Harley-Davidson that I knew I could win with.”
Jared Mees finished alone in third in front of Henry Wiles (KK Motorcycle Supply). Weidman made it five Harleys in a row by holding off Bryan Smith (Monster Energy Kawasaki) for fifth. Lancaster H-D’s Chris Carr, the Expert Dash for Cash winner, was just behind Smith in seventh.
With two rounds remaining, Johnson leads Joe Kopp by ten points, 265 to 255. Kopp (Latus H-D/Lloyd Bros. Ducati) dropped out of eighth place on the 20th lap. He was credited with a 16th place finish. Mees is third with 246 points.
Earlier the Pro Twins race was won by points leader Jeffrey Carver in a flag to flag romp.
The Van’s Yamaha/Woody Kyle Racing rider led from the start, building up a lead on the eight of 12 laps of 1.684 secs. But three laps later the lead went under a second as Honda Mack Daddy Racing’s Michael Avila closed the gap.
That was a wake-up call for Carver, who upped his pace on the final lap to win by just over a second, officially 1.001 secs. Avila was second with 2.266 secs. on Rod Lake/Mike Velasco/Brother Powersports Honda’s Brad Baker.
Monster Energy Kawasaki/Werner & Springsteen’s Chaz Springsteen finished another 2.36 secs. back in fourth.
By winning his fifth race in 15 tries, Carver leads Baker in the championship 278 to 251.
1. Kenny Coolbeth Jr. (H-D)
2. Jake Johnson (H-D)
3. Jared Mees (H-D)
4. Henry Wiles (H-D)
5. Matt Weidman (H-D)
6. Bryan Smith (Kawasaki)
7. Chris Carr (H-D)
8. Johnny Lewis (Kawasaki)
9. Shawn Baer (Triumph)
10. Jethro Halbert (H-D)