Koester wins Freemansburg Unlimited
FREEMANSBURG, Pa. (Sept. 15, 2015) - John Koester won the Unlimited class in round 6 of the AMA Pro Hillclimb season and took second in the Xtreme class, moving him closer to Unlimited and Xtreme class points leaders, Jay Sallstrom and Phil Libhart, respectively. Deryk Beaudoin took his first Pro Sport win.
Pro Sport rider Nick Briggs tackled the hill first, posting a 19.925 E.T.- the only rider to top the hill in the first half. Joseph Lowe and Daniel Storm stood second and third at the half, reaching heights of 475 and 410 feet, respectively.
After intermission, Sean Van Assen crested in 18.396 seconds for the Pro Sport lead. Then Beaudoin laid down a smooth 17.028-second ride for the win. Lowe stopped the clock at 17.846 seconds, bumping Van Assen to third. Briggs battled back, taking third from Van Assen with a 17.888 E.T. The Pro Sport podium was a bit of a family affair as Beaudoin and Briggs are brothers.
The Xtreme Class rode next with Adam Holmes topping the hill in just over 19 seconds. But the real battle came near the end of the order when Sallstrom moved into the lead with a 14.231-second ride only to be bested by Koester with an 11.615 E.T. Vinny Nuzzolilli wedged between them, cresting in 13.734 seconds. Then Libhart spoiled their fun by chopping nearly a half-second off Koester's time.
When the Xtreme Class returned after halftime, the battle continued. Sallstrom dropped into the tens with a 10.066 E.T. Koester posted a 10.234 and Libhart a 10.593. Sallstrom topped the Xtreme podium flanked by Koester and Libhart, second and third in order.
Holmes led the Unlimited Class charge with a 16.583-second ride. Libhart and Cory Strickler posted times in the 14's, with Libhart a quarter second faster. Nuzzolilli rode over the top in 11.800 seconds for the lead only to see Koester take it away with a 10.884 E.T. Sallstrom finished the half between Koester and Nuzzolilli with a 10.952-second ride.
Libhart took over third from Nuzzolilli in the second half by posting a 10.961 E.T. Nuzzolilli broke his bike fighting back and settled for fourth. Sallstrom sliced 0.05 seconds off his first-half time and held onto second. Koester waited out the ride order but never had to defend his spot on the top step of the Unlimited podium.
John Koester won the exhibition Hill-Cross final against John Harper and Devin Sweitzer.
In series points, Sallstrom leads the Unlimited Class with 131, while Koester trails by two and Libhart by eight. Libhart, at 132 points, holds a razor-thin one-point lead over Koester in the Xtreme Class, followed by Sallstrom- eight points back. Lowe leads the Pro Sport points with 125. He is followed by Briggs with 119 and Curry with 115. Curry, the early leader in the series is out of the competition for the season with an injury. Eddie Capelli is next in the order with 106 points.
AMA Pro Hillclimbers will face off next at Jefferson, PA on September 27.
The AMA Pro Hillclimb Series receives sponsorship from VP Racing Fuels, Wiseco, TiLube, Evans Coolant, ALCO Cleaners, PSYCHMX Graphix, and Kawasaki.
U/L: 1. John Koester (Hon); 2. Jay Sallstrom (Yam); 3. Phil Libhart (Tri); 4. Vinny Nuzzolilli (Hon); 5. Cory Strickler (Yam).
Xtreme: 1. Jay Sallstrom (Yam); 2. John Koester (Hon); 3. Phil Libhart (Tri); 4. Vinny Nuzzolilli (Hon); 5. Cory Strickler (Yam).
Pro Sport: 1. Deryk Beaudoin (Yam); 2. Joseph Lowe (Kaw); 3. Nick Briggs (Yam); 4. Sean Van Assen (Suz); 5. Eric Comer (Yam).
Hill Cross: 1. John Koester (Suz); 2. John Harper (Suz); 3. Devin Sweitzer (Hon).