Danny Eslick returned to the top of the AMA Pro Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson series standings with a victory Saturday at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca.
The Ruthless Racing/Trev Deeley Motorcycles rider, who earned his first AMA Pro championship in the class in 2010, took advantage of a 10-second jump start penalty assessed to Suburban Motors H-D/ Aerostar Global’s Steve Rapp to take his first class win of the season along with the top spot in the series’ points chase.
Although Rapp was the first rider to take the checkered flag, he was judged to have jumped the start early, ceding the victory to Eslick, the only rider able to keep pace with the defending series champion.
“I’ve been getting a lot of second [places] and getting beat up in this deal. I think everybody expected me to just come in and win and it just shows that these guys have been busting their butts and riding these Harleys really hard,” Eslick said.
“When you get up to the pace Steve and some of these other guys are going, it makes it pretty tough. It’s not the way I wanted to win it, by penalty, but a ‘W’ is a ‘W,’ and we need the points.”
Despite the jump start penalty, Rapp had built a large enough lead over the rest of the field by the end of the race’s 11 laps to take second place. He was followed home by a deep battle for the third step of the podium, which went to KWR/Millennium Technologies rider Kyle Wyman, who recently returned to action after knee surgery for an injury at Barber Motorsports Park last month.
The fifth and sixth rounds of the AMA Pro Vance & Hines Harley Davidson series will be contested August 8-10 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during the FIM Red Bull Indianapolis GP.
Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca Race Results:
1. Danny Eslick (Ruthless Racing/Trev Deeley Motorcycles), 11 laps
2. Steve Rapp (Suburban Motors H-D/ Aerostar Global), +6.128 seconds
3. Kyle Wyman (KWR/Millennium Technologies), +9.982 seconds
4. Tyler O’Hara (Josh Chisum Racing/Bartels’ H-D), +10.476 seconds
5. Benjamin Carlson (Suburban Motors H-D), +10.522 seconds
6. Ryan Kerr (Thunder Roads Magazine), +10.927 seconds
7. Gage McAllister (Folsom H-D), +10.933 seconds
8. Hayden Schultz (Chili Pepper Racing/H-D of Bloomington), +12.673 seconds
9. Darren James (Trev Deeley Motorcycles), +39.866 seconds
10. Josh Chisum (Josh Chisum Racing/Bartels’ H-D), +43.328 seconds
11. Shelina Moreda (Chili Pepper Racing), +1:26.679
12. JC Gibbs (Octane), +1:34.255
13. Jerrett Martin (CPL Systems/Aggressive Insurance), 6 laps
14. David Estok (Thrashed Bike Racing/Arrow Aviation), DNF
15. Nicholas Hansen (Aerostar Global/Suburban Motors H-D), DNS
AMA Pro Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson Series Points
1. Eslick, 95
2. O’Hara, 84
3. Carlson, 76
4. McAllister, 70
5. Rapp, 57
6. K. Wyman, 51
7. Hansen, 47
8. Schultz, 41
9. Stump, 40
10. Kerr, 40