Henry Wiles Wins 4th Straight Springfield Tourist Trophy at Illinois Fair Grounds

 
 
Henry Wiles is confident that his team plays a large role in his success
Henry Wiles is confident that his team plays a large role in his success
Henry Wiles, and team Wiles Racing recently rolled into Springfield, Illinois with confidence and vigor. Geared up to race in the AMA (American Motorcyclist Association) Grand National Series, Wiles was no stranger to this particular venue. In fact, one could say with confidence that he was very familiar with competing in the Springfield TT (Tourist Trophy), at the Illinois State Fair Grounds. One could go one step farther and say that he had experienced his fair share of success at this particular location as well. During past outings, he had earned four first-place finishes and secured second place twice.

I had a good confidence level," explained Wiles. "I like racing TT's and had won this event for the past three years that I had raced it. Referring to his performance prior to the Springfield TT he continued, "The two prior races had been Daytona , and they were tough. It put me in the hole in the points race. The keys to success in this race were great starts and mistake-free riding."

The track was in great shape, but a very tight and simple layout would deem passing other riders a challenge. The difficulty level had no bearing on wiles intentions though, as he had showed up with fire in his eyes and success on his mind.

After winning his heat and walking away from the "Dash for Cash" victorious, Wiles focused on the feature. Starting in the first position, the rider took the lead in the 25-lap main event and never looked back. It was a picture-perfect night for Wiles as he was not challenged throughout the entire race, and in turn took the checkered flag and his rightful spot atop the podium.

"The competition was stiff, and the track was tough to pass on," he recalled. I think it was the best riding done by many of the riders on a TT course." Although holding the lead throughout the entire feature, experience told Wiles that there are no certainties in the sport until a race is over. "I wasn't confident I had this one in the bag until I was heading for the checkered flag", shared Wiles. "Anything can happen in racing. Even though I was not challenged, there are always possibilities for a mistake when you're riding that hard. Mechanical problems can happen, but we have never had one with my current team. The team behind me is what makes it happen," he ensured. "I realize it would not be what it is without them."

Henry Wiles recently walked away victorious from his heat, the Dash For Cash and the 25-lap feature in the Expert Class, at The AMA Grand National Series held at Springfield, Illinois
Henry Wiles recently walked away victorious from his heat, the Dash For Cash and the 25-lap feature in the Expert Class, at The AMA Grand National Series held at Springfield, Illinois
The driver is also acutely aware of the importance of keeping his bike in perfect running condition. "Maintenance is very critical," he said. "If you let things go without maintenance, they break; it's a simple formula. I use the K&N filters, oil, and cleaner," he continued. "I've been using K&N products from the very day I started dirt track on the professional level. K&N products are the best on the market. It's the best quality, and for a reasonable price."

Henry Wiles' success has earned him a household name in the world of AMA pro racing. In fact, the rider has won eight straight Peoria TT events in a row, an accomplishment that only one other rider, Chris Carr, has experienced. His most current victory at the Springfield short track positioned him in a tie for the all-time short track list with Carr as well. That in mind, Wiles is perfectly aware that both crowns are out there for the taking. With a little luck, perseverance, and a continuance of impressive riding, singly holding each of these titles is a strong possibility and could be lurking in the rider's future. "It took seven years to get there, and it boils down to the final lap," explained the rider in reference to his accomplishments.

When asked what fans can expect from Henry Wiles in the future, it quickly became evident that Wiles has a great appreciation for his supporters and feels a responsibility to please them. "Fans can expect me to be the last rider to leave the pits," he promised. "I try to talk to a lot of fans, and answer as many questions as I can. I have many people who started out as fans and have progressed into friends, and even sponsors. I especially try to welcome the kids, because I remember what it was like when I was a kid, and loved to see the professional guys in action."

In closing, Henry Wiles shared his recipe for success. "I think to win a championship you have to have consistent finishes at the front. That's the goal - to win the overall championship."

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