Estenson Racing’s Dallas Daniels led from start-to-finish to score his third win of the season at the Williams Grove Half-Mile II, moving the 17-year-old to the top of the American Flat Track AFT Singles standings as the series reached the halfway mark. His teammate Mikey Rush fought for a top-10 finish in challenging conditions to score points Saturday night in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania. AFT SuperTwins rider, Kolby Carlile, scored his best result of the season in 13th, but unfortunately, JD Beach’s race ended before the start with a technical issue.
Daniels showed good speed from the start, qualifying second and taking the win in his Semi with his teammate Rush right behind him. Although his efforts didn’t land him pole position for the Main Event, the fast kid from Illinois grabbed the holeshot and in spite of some pressure behind him, led flag-to-flag for his third win of the season. The only rider in the class to win more than one race so far in 2020, Daniels capitalized on his strong 2-1 finish at the doubleheader weekend in the Keystone State, gaining 34 points on the competition to claim the points lead.
Coming off of his first win of the season, Rush was looking for a repeat. He had a solid runner-up finish in the Semi, but Saturday’s track was the opposite of Friday’s Round 7. With some rain the night before and cooler, overcast conditions, it started out with grip at the beginning of the day but that went away. Rush went with his setup from the night before, which unfortunately didn’t work in the slick conditions. The Californian got off to a decent start in the top five, but was struggling to find grip and found himself back in ninth. Rush kept pushing and moved up a spot with five laps to go and held onto eighth to earn more points in the championship.
The AFT SuperTwins team also faced challenges as the track lost its grip. JD Beach started the day not far off the pace, but the changing conditions slowed that forward momentum. Starting from the second row in his Semi, the multi-time road race champion got off to a flying start to grab the holeshot, but the lack of grip made it challenging to fight up front and he finished seventh. Unfortunately, Beach was unable to pull off another inspiring holeshot as he was sidelined from the start with a technical issue. His teammate Carlile continued to make progress to record the best result of his first full season in the premier class, crossing the line 13th.
The Estenson Racing gets a weekend off before heading to Mesquite, Texas, for the American Flat Track Dallas Half-Mile doubleheader on September 25-26.
Tommy Hayden – Estenson Racing Team Manager
“Today was a good day for our AFT Singles team. We’re really having some success there. Things are clicking well for both riders. We’ve won three out of the last four races and we want to keep that up. Mikey was fast all day, but unfortunately, the Main Event didn’t go as he expected. He didn’t quite get the result he wanted, but he made a big gain in the points over the weekend. Dallas had a spectacular weekend overall with a second and first, but in particular, looking at the bigger picture with the championship. It was a 34-point swing from where he was going into the weekend to leaving with the lead. So that’s huge for one weekend. He’s riding well. Both guys are riding well. The bikes are working well, the team is working well. We’ve just got to keep that up. The next few races are similar tracks. So hopefully we can continue like we did this weekend.
“On the Twins side, we tried some different stuff today. Nothing too drastic. We were just trying to make some small improvements today and not get too far out of the box. Unfortunately, we didn’t make the gains that we had hoped to find today. We need to go home and really analyze the stuff from this week. We have a similar track for the next race. We’re just going to keep pushing ahead, keep trying to find something, and be better at Dallas.”
Dallas Daniels – Estenson Racing AFT Singles
“It was for sure the best weekend for us by far. The race couldn’t have gone any better. I led every lap and got the holeshot. The only thing that could have made it better was starting on pole. It was good to get the win for me and the team and move up into the points lead. We’re just going to take it in stride. It’s flat track. You can’t get too excited because everything can change in an instant. So we’ll go back home and do our homework and keep working hard for the next race. The rest of these tracks are going to be similar to this one with being a slick groove. I’m really looking forward to the rest of the season.”
Mikey Rush – Estenson Racing AFT Singles
“I got off to a bad start in the Main. I didn’t get the greatest jump off the line and then struggled the whole race. The track got a lot slicker than last night and I went with the same setup, which I think was the wrong move. I was fighting for traction the whole race and tried to do something to fix it. I was moving around on the track, trying different lines – trying off the groove, on the groove – but it was still doing the same thing the whole race. That’s the way it goes sometimes. Dirt track is like that. You have got to chase the track. We’ll come back stronger for Dallas. The guys will do a good job with the bikes and I’ll be ready.”
Kolby Carlile – Estenson Racing AFT SuperTwins
“We had our best result of the season in 13th, but that’s not where we want to be. It’s frustrating. For the first five laps, I’m in the thick of it with the second pack guys. I’ve definitely got the speed, but for some reason after the first bunch of laps, there’s something we’re lacking a little bit. We just fall off the pace. My lap times are super consistent though, within a tenth for 30 laps. We’ve just got to figure out some more stuff. This track didn’t suit our bike. We’re going to dig deep, figure something out for Dallas and try again.”
JD Beach – Estenson Racing AFT SuperTwins
“We just had a tough night. The day started out better when there was a lot of grip on the track and then as the track dried out, we just started struggling more and more. We made some changes for the Main Event, but unfortunately, we had an issue and didn’t get to start it. That’s just how our luck is going right now. If we didn’t have bad luck, we would have no luck. We’re going to regroup during this short break and see what we can do in Texas.”