History Awaits as Progressive AFT Powers into 74th Peoria TT
August 21, 2021
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (August 17, 2021) – Progressive American Flat Track will make its highly anticipated return to PMC Race Park for the 74th Law Tigers Peoria TT presented by Country Saloon in Peoria, Illinois, this Saturday, August 21.
The race easily ranks as among the most prestigious and fabled on the Grand National Championship tour. It’s earned that distinction both via its long history and incredible setting inside a natural amphitheater that offers spectacular viewing for the massive crowds that annually pack the grassy hills surrounding the 5/8-mile course.
The Peoria TT is one of those special events aspiring racers dream of someday winning. And that’s a goal that’s proved elusive to an overwhelming percentage of even the world’s greatest flat trackers due to the circuit-specific excellence of a small handful of riders over the past few decades.
Between the two of them, “King” Henry Wiles and “Prince of Peoria” Chris Carr have garnered 26 of the most recent 30 premier-class Peoria TT victories. Wiles had singlehandedly shut the current generation of Mission SuperTwins presented by S&S Cycle aces out with 14 straight wins prior to missing the 2019 edition due to injury.
Reigning Grand National Champion Briar Bauman (No. 1 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750) reigned in Wiles’ absence and is likely viewed as the pre-race favorite by most heading into this weekend. That doesn’t mean there aren’t a number of other serious contenders to consider, however.
New York Short Track II winner Jared Mees (No. 9 Indian Motorcycle/Progressive Insurance FTR750) has racked up a pile of Peoria runner-up finishes to Wiles over the years, and the race is one of the very few he has yet to conquer.
Multi-time roadracing national champion JD Beach (No. 95 Estenson Racing Yamaha MT-07 DT) was already widely considered the class’ resident TT master, and the recent rule changes designed to level the playing field between race-only and production-based motorcycles should only make Beach that much more formidable in Peoria.
The increasingly on-form Bronson Bauman (No. 37 Indian Motorcycle of Oklahoma City FTR750) pushed his older brother for the win at the 2019 Peoria TT and would love nothing more than to get the job done in the rematch.
Jarod Vanderkooi (No. 20 Mission Roof Systems Indian FTR750) has the versatility to excel at the venue and the drive to finally get his maiden Mission SuperTwins victory after scoring three runner-up finishes already in 2021.
Who will be the next to etch their name on the legendary Peoria TT’s winners list?