Throwback Thursday: Black Coal Podium

Larry Lawrence | February 20, 2020

Throwback Thursday: Black Coal Podium

(Cycle News Photo Collection/Cindy Lemere)

In this week’s Throwback we dial back the clock 24 years to 1996 and the Black Coal AMA National Hare Scrambles in Lynnville, Indiana. On that October weekend it was KTM’s Scott Plessinger scoring an exciting come-from-behind victory over Suzuki’s Rodney Smith (left). Fellow Suzuki rider Steve Hatch (right) came home third.

Plessinger overcame a terrible start to the race saying, “I was all over the place on the first lap. I just couldn’t get into the sync of riding and couldn’t do anything right. I was running into trees, bent my hand backwards and hurt it and blew off corners. I had no rhythm and was ready to call it quits.”

On the final lap Smith had the lead, but the course was packed with 270 riders and he crashed into a lapped rider. That gave a surging Plessinger the opportunity to catch up. The two battled back and forth before yet another lapper balked Smith and Plessinger found a way around to take over the lead and eventually the victory.

Even though Plessinger won the battle of the Black Coal, Smith went on to win that year’s AMA National Hare Scrambles title.

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Larry Lawrence | Archives Editor In addition to writing our Archives section on a weekly basis, Lawrence is another who is capable of covering any event we throw his way.