Stevie Bonsey, riding the No. 80 Suzuki, led all 25 laps on his way to victory in the AMA Pro Racing GNC1 class main event |on Thursday night at the Daytona Flat Track located just outside Turns 1 and 2 at Daytona International Speedway. The triumph was his third national win in the elite GNC1 class, which features the best dirt track racers in the world, but his first at the Daytona Flat Track.
“I’m on top of the world,” said the 25-year-old Bonsey, who is a native of Salinas, CA.
While Bonsey led flag-to-flag in the race, it was hardly a runaway. Honda riders Jared Mees and Kenny Coolbeth Jr. were right on Bonsey’s rear tire the whole race but couldn’t find an opening to pull off a pass.
“I was glued to his rear wheel,” said Mees, who took runner-up honors with Coolbeth finishing third. “I was hoping for a mistake out of Stevie. He’s a phenomenal rider and he didn’t make one. I played it very safe. I rode like a gentleman. I don’t know if that was a good thing or a bad thing. I had maybe one shot to get in there.”
Bonsey’s margin of victory in the event was .123 seconds.
In the 18-rider, 16-lap GNC2 main event, a class that features the up-and-coming Flat Track racers, Andrew Luker riding the No. 11Z Honda captured his first career victory by a margin of 1.218 seconds.
In the six-lap GNC1 $1,000 Dash For Cash, featuring the top-two finishing riders in each of the heat races, was won by Coolbeth Jr.
Riders winning the 10-lap GNC1 expert heats were Mees, Jarod Vanderkooi (Honda) and Bonsey. In the GNC1 expert semifinals, Jay Maloney (Honda) and JD Beach (Yamaha) were victorious the victories.
Action will conclude at the Daytona Flat Track on Friday night. For more information and tickets for the remaining Daytona 200 Week events, visit www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or call 1-800-PITSHOP.Fans can stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest for the latest news all season long. Fans can also follow the latest on DAYTONA Rising, the $400 million frontstretch renovation at the “World Center of Racing” by using #DAYTONARising on Twitter or visiting www.daytonarising.com.