Briar Bauman leads American Flat Track standings through four races

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Through four races of the American Flat Track season, Briar Bauman leads the AFT SuperTwins division after sweeping the Indy Mile events last weekend in Indianapolis.

The victories were the first at the track for Bauman in AFT’s premier class. The No. 1 Indian Motorcycle rider finished 1.147 seconds over Jared Mees, and Bryan Smith earned Harley’s first Mile podium since the introduction of the XG750R.

“It’s pretty crazy,” Bauman said in an AFT release. “Honestly, I had both Jared’s and Bryan’s posters on my wall when I was growing up. I watched them every chance I could. Getting to race with them is a little bit surreal… The racing was clean and fast and the track was gnarly. All-in-all, it’s a dream come true.”

Jean Todt visits the Indy Mile (AFT).

It was AFT’s first visit to the Indy venue since 2015. The Indy Mile was added as the second event this season after a July 31-Aug. 1 event in Lima, Ohio, was canceled.

The Indy Mile event also drew a visit from FIA president Jean Todt, who was in town to attend the 104th Indianapolis 500. Todt met with AFT CEO Michael Lock.

Bauman leads Mees, who won the season’s first two races, 90-87 in the championship standings.

In AFT Production Twins, James Rispoli and first-time winner Ben Lowe scored victories at the Indy Mile, and in the AFT Singles class, Henry Wiles and Brandon Kitchen were winners at the Indy Mile.

Next: American Flat Track will be racing Sept. 4-6 at Springfield, Illinois.

Jo Shimoda joins Seth Hammaker, Austin Forkner on injured list; Musquin remains out

Shimoda injured
Feld Motor Sports/MX Sports Pro Racing/Align Media
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Bad news continues to come out of the Monster Energy / Pro Circuit Kawasaki team as they announced Jo Shimoda injured his shoulder in a practice session and will not mount up when the Monster Energy Supercross 250 East division opens in Houston, Texas on February 4. A timetable has not been given for Shimoda’s return, but a press release from the team references multiple weeks.

“I’m doing my best to focus forward on my return to racing,” said Shimoda in the release. “Our goal was to compete for the 250 Supercross Eastern Regional Championship and I know we had been doing the right work to make that happen. Unfortunately, this crash will cause me to miss the start of the season, but I still aim to be back on the track racing for wins before the end of Supercross.”

Shimoda is joined on the sidelines by teammates Seth Hammaker and Austin Forkner, who also suffered injuries in recent weeks.

The news of Hammaker’s sidelining came just two days ago. His wrist injury is sufficient to require surgery, so he too will miss multiple weeks. Hammaker was scheduled to compete in the 250 East division alongside Shimoda.

Forkner was involved in a Lap 1 crash in the 250 West season opener at Anaheim. Multiple injuries, including an ACL tear, will sideline him for the remainder of the season. He described the injury and its aftermath on Instagram.

Forkner will be relieved by Carson Mumford, but not before that rider’s wrist has healed sufficiently. He is scheduled to debut with Kawasaki in Oakland for the rescheduled Round 2 Supercross race on February 18.

Shimoda finished fourth in the 2022 Supercross 250 West division and was second in 2021 points in 250 East. In 2021, Shimoda won his first Supercross race at Salt Lake City. Last year, he scored one podium and six top-fives in nine starts.

Shimoda finished second in last year’s outdoor Lucas Oil Pro Motocross season, where he added two more SuperMotocross wins including the Unadilla Nationals that kicked off a four-race streak of first- or second-place results.

Kawasaki is not the only team facing injury. Red Bull KTM initially reported Marvin Musquin would be out for the San Diego round with a wrist injury and “maybe more”. This week it was announced he will miss this week’s Triple Crown race in Anaheim and “at least the next several rounds.”