AMA Pro Racing officials announced today a new class for AMA Pro Flat Track presented by J&P Cycles aimed at developing the up-and-coming riders in the J&P Cycles Pro Singles division. The new class, titled Basic Twins, will provide a stepping stone for Pro licensed riders, allowing them to showcase their talents on twin-cylinder machines as they make the transition to the Grand National Championship.
The class will debut with an exhibition during the fall race at the Springfield (Ill.) Mile in September.
It will then become a full-fledged support class in 2014, with races at select Half-Mile and Mile venues. Pro Singles will continue as a support class as well, but will likely be dropped from some of the Mile circuits in favor of the Basic Twins next season.
In addition, it’s been announced that the Pro Singles race at the upcoming May Springfield Mile will now be a non-points paying exhibition race.
This is an important step in building up our young talent and creating a healthy environment for the future of the sport,” said Dan Johnsen, Director of AMA Pro Flat Track in an AMA Pro Racing news release. “Allowing our Pro licensed riders to show their skills and talents, while gaining experience on the twins, eases their transition as they move through the ranks of AMA Pro Flat Track on their way to becoming the stars of tomorrow.”
The new Basic Twins class is a re-envisioning of the Basic Expert Twins division that ran as part of the series during the 2007 and 2008 seasons. The same engines approved for competition in the Grand National Expert Twins class will be eligible in the Basic Twins class, but with varying levels of modification required in order for them to fit within a reduced performance envelope.
While it remains to be seen how many Pro Singles riders can put together a Twins program, Jake Constantine, current Pro Singles Series leader, thinks the new class will provide a good stepping stone to the Grand National class.
“For guys who have only raced 450s and then to make their first Twins race in a Grand National is a huge step,” Constantine said. “This will give guys like me a way to get some Twins experience without the pressure of running in the top class.
“It’s going to be a challenge to put together a Twins program for a lot of Pro Singles riders. Our purse money right now is really not anywhere close enough to help you have a mechanic or any kind of help, even with the Singles. It’s another level of commitment and expertise needed to have a competitive Twin. It’s still early, but I’d bet there’ll be a lot of Kawasakis in this new class since it’s a lot cheaper to run.
“We’ll see how it goes, but it’s definitely something I want to be a part of.”
The next stop for the 2013 AMA Pro Flat Track presented by J&P Cycles season is the Stockton Half-Mile at the San Joaquin County Fairgrounds in Stockton, Calif., on Saturday, May 11. For tickets and information, please visit www.stockton99.com for more information.