Jeffrey Carver Scores First Career American Flat Track Twins Win

Shayna Texter holds off title-rival Kolby Carlile to keep her AFT Singles championship hopes alive.

Victory was a long time coming for Jeffrey Carver, Jr., and it was sweet.Andrea Wilson

Everyone loves an underdog. Privateer American Flat Track racer Jeffrey Carver, Jr. is no exception. The Ben Evans Racing/Carver's BBQ rider bested not only newly crowned AFT Twins champ Jared Mees on the Indian Motorcycle/Rogers Racing Team's home turf, he beat the rest of the factory riders to take his first career-victory in the premier class on a twin-cylinder machine at the Lone Star Half-Mile.

But while Mees and the seemingly unbeatable Indian Wrecking Crew have dominated this season, if you were paying attention you would’ve seen Carver coming. The Illinois native has been on the verge of a win all season, the most notable of which was at the X Games when Carver had the silver medal in the bag before a flat tire took the medal and a podium finish out of his grasp.

Jeffrey Carver, Jr.
Carver put on a masterclass performance on the Harley-Davidson XR750 at the Lone Star Half-Mile to take his first-career win in the AFT Twins class.Andrea Wilson

You didn’t have to look that far back to see Carver was poised to take his first AFT Twins victory. He was on point all day. After winning his heat and semi in convincing fashion, Carver repeated that success in the main, beating Mees by 1.611 seconds.

Like any David versus Goliath tale, the secret to success is determination and hard work. Carver can attest to both, but he also points out that strategy was at play. He brought the right tool out of the shed: a Harley-Davidson XR750. Although it’s 40-year-old machinery, the XR is still the master of slick half-miles.

Joining Carver and Mees on the podium was another privateer, Team Nila’s Johnny Lewis on an Indian Motorcycle Scout FTR750. Lewis didn't win, but it was a big moment for both Indian and Lewis. The Lone Star Half-Mile marked the first time anyone had raced a customer FTR750 and Lewis took an off-the-showroom-floor model straight to the podium. That podium was a long time coming for Lewis (who has been a part-time, fill-in rider for 2017) as well—his first in five years.

johnny lewis
Johnny Lewis turned heads by putting a customer-spec Indian Scout FTR750 on an AFT Twins podium in its first outing.Andrea Wilson

In the AFT Singles class, Shayna Texter got back to her winning ways. The Richie Morris Racing rider held off championship rival Kolby Carlile to score her fifth win of the season and keep her title hopes alive going into the season finale in Perris, California, on October 7.

larry pegram
Veteran Superbike racer/NBCSN AFT commentator Larry Pegram filled in for factory Indian rider Brad Baker, who was sidelined due to a mountain-bike training injury.Andrea Wilson

And with Brandon Price’s misfortune in Texas, the Parkinson Brothers Racing rider is out of the chase, but Carlile still sits well in the driver’s seat with a 24-point-lead over Texter. Still, the Estenson Racing rider can’t sit on his laurels. Carlile needs two points to clinch the crown. Bad luck and another Texter win on a half-mile could pull off the biggest championship upset in recent memory.

Joining Texter and Carlile on the podium was Big Momma & Daddy Deep Pockets Racing’s Dan Bromley.

Jared Mees
Jared Mees was hoping to bring his team a win at its home race in Fort Worth, Texas.Andrea Wilson
Brian Smith
Bryan Smith was edged out of the final podium spot by Lewis.Andrea Wilson
Aaron Kaufman
TV personality/motorcycle enthusiast Aaron Kaufman (formerly of Gas Monkey Garage) took a spin on Baker's FTR750 as part of his grand marshal "duties" for the event.Andrea Wilson
Kevin Stollings, Jr. (99) and Shayna Texter (hidden) duked it out in the AFT Singles semi-final, with Texter besting Stollings for the win.Andrea Wilson
Peoria TT winner Jesse Janisch (132) also had a good night, winning his AFT Singles semi-final and crossing the line fourth in the main event.Andrea Wilson
MotoAmerica Superstock 1000 regular Danny Eslick celebrates his last-chance-qualifier victory with a wheelie for the crowd.Andrea Wilson
Texter (52) held off Kolby Carlile (36) to postpone the AFT Singles coronation until after the Perris finale.Andrea Wilson
After a handful of difficult races in the second half of the season, Texter was back in top form to take her fifth win of the season.Andrea Wilson
Sammy Halbert (69) and Pegram (272) battle in the AFT Twins main.Andrea Wilson