After eyeing up the series last season, the The Red Bull KTM Team will officially contest the 2019 American Flat Track series in the 450cc Singles class. Based out of Murrieta, California, the full-fledged factory racing squad will contest the 18-round series which travels back and forth across dirt ovals and TT circuits across the United States. Reigning Singles champ Dan Bromley and Shayna Texter will both compete for the newly announced team.
“KTM is very excited to announce these two riders for the new Red Bull KTM Factory Racing Flat Track Team,” Team Manager Chris Fillmore said. “Both riders have incredible potential and we can’t wait to get the season underway. Building a new team and program from the ground up is not short of challenges, so I would like to personally thank the KTM Motorsports team, Dan and Shayna, as well as our team partners.”
The team was introduced during a private event at SoCal’s Perris Raceway. During the event, it showcased its modified 2019 450 SX-F Factory Edition. Specifically outfitted in flat-track racing trim, compared to the motocross version, the suspension is lowered with generally slower valving, for greater pitch control. The traditional 21-/19-inch wheel combo was replaced with a set of wider 19-inch spoked hoops shod with Dunlop DT3 rubber. The front brake is also removed at non-TT races with racers relying solely on the rear break around dirt ovals. The race bikes will feature a newly developed and dirt track-specific engine package.
Both Texter and Browley took to the track for some introductory laps on their racebikes and navy blue and orange Alpinestars race suits, before journalists got to experience the fun on lightly modified production 450 SX-Fs.
“Obviously I want to win the championship, and in order to do that you’ve got to win races and podiums,” said Texter, 27, who hails from Willow Street, Pennsylvania. “It’s no stranger to anyone who follows the sport—I’ve been so close to winning the championship so many years.”
Texter has recently teamed with renowned trainer and motorsports fitness guru Aldon Baker in an effort to take her to the next level.
“I’ve been working with Aldon and just trying to get physically and mentally as prepared for the start of the season,” she said. “Aldon’s trying to help me accomplish some of my goals and make sure that I’m as good as I can be going into the start of the season.”
“This will be my first time [on a factory team],” 23-year-old young gun Bromley said. Previous to this, I was on a Kawasaki-supported Twins program. It wasn’t a factory team. I got no money out of it, no nothing. But all the bikes were supplied and I just had to show up at the track.
“Here, it’s a lot more easy. I get a little bit more help getting to the tracks. Get a little bit more help being able to live my life and train and do all that,” said the reigning champ, who still swings a hammer and works as a carpenter at home in New Freedom, Pennsylvania, during the work week.
“I just want to defend my championship this year,” he adds. “Then for 2020, I’m really looking forward to hopefully moving up to the Twins division. I would be really excited for KTM if they come out with a Twins program.”
Although KTM has yet to announce a Twins-class flat-track program, based on how it does this year, paired with the recent release of its 799cc parallel twin as used in the 2019 790 Duke streetbike, we’d be surprised if we didn’t see the Austrians enter the premier class.
The Red Bull KTM team will make its debut at the Daytona TT in Daytona Beach, Florida, March 14.