ELLENTON, Fla. (March 3, 2015) – After a wild night of action last weekend in Kansas City, the championship battle in AMSOIL Arenacross, featuring Ricky Carmichael’s Road to Supercross, is arguably at its most intense. This weekend, the field travels to Council Bluffs, Iowa, for two nights of action inside the Mid-America Center on Friday, March 6, and Saturday, March 7.
In the Arenacross Class standings, fewer than 10 points separate the three championship leaders: Team Babbitt’s Monster Energy/AMSOIL Kawasaki teammates Jacob Hayes and Matt Goerke, and Husqvarna TiLUBE TUF Racing’s Kyle Regal. That proximity is sure to shift again at the eighth round of the 2015 season and back-to-back nights of racing. The action inside the Mid-America Center kicks off at 8 p.m. EST/7 p.m. CST/ 5 p.m. PST.
Jacob Hayes has sat atop the Arenacross Class point standings and has carried the red #1 plate since the fourth round of the season in Nashville, Tenn. His consistency has played a major part in maintaining the position, allowing Hayes to withstand impressive efforts from both Goerke and Regal through the month of February. However, misfortune struck for Hayes in the second Main Event in Kansas City, when he appeared to experience a problem with his motorcycle and briefly pulled into the mechanics’ area. That opening was exactly what both Goerke and Regal needed to narrow their deficits in the points. Goerke’s second overall win of the season and Regal’s third-place overall effort brought both riders to within single digits of Hayes, who ultimately settled for eighth overall.
The recent shakeup plays into the excitement over which of these three riders will ultimately earn the top seed in the Race to the Championship. While the points will reset once the season-ending playoff begins, the opportunity to be the rider to beat over the final six rounds is something each of these three riders has trained relentlessly for and it is why they lay it all on the line every time the gate drops.
Currently, just one point separates Babbitt’s teammates, each of whom have controlled the championship standings at some point this season. Goerke was the early frontrunner in the title fight, and after enduring some inconsistent results, he is surging at the right time. Regal has been in the picture since the opening round and has consistently been the biggest threat to Hayes and Goerke. All three riders have a pair of overall wins to their credit this season, only adding to the impending drama that is sure to unfold when the Race to the Championship begins in New Orleans on March 21.
As the leaders in the Arenacross Class continue to assert themselves, the battle to earn the tenth and final spot in the Race to the Championship continues to evolve as well. Just last week, Husqvarna TiLUBE TUF Racing’s Gavin Faith sat tenth in the points. But following a strong performance in Kansas City, in which he missed out on the overall victory as the result of a tiebreaker, Faith gave himself some breathing room by jumping up to eighth. Now the fight for the final spot is coming down to Motosport.com/Haeseker Racing KTM’s Gared Steinke, in ninth, College Hunks Moving Junk/Spinechillers Racing KTM’s Willy Browning, in tenth, and Babbitt’s Online Suzuki’s Cory Green, who is on the outside looking in, sitting 11th.
It was a mixed bag for these three riders in Kansas City. Steinke enjoyed a solid night en route to a seventh-place finish, while Green battled his way through each Main Event to ultimately finish 14th. Browning had the worst fortune of the three, failing to qualify for the Main Event and earning no points. Just two points separate Steinke from Browning, while Green will have his work cut out for him during the next couple weekends to overcome a 29-point deficit to Browning.
Council Bluffs also marks the third round of the Western Regional Arenacross Lites Class Championship. Currently, Motosport.com/Haeseker Racing KTM’s Daniel Blair maintains control of the points lead he’s had since the opening round of the championship, but a top-five finish by Team DirtBikeMike KTM’s Brandon Glenn last weekend has brought him to within five points of Blair.
The eighth round of AMSOIL Arenacross gets underway this Friday, March 6 inside Council Bluff’s/Mid-America Center and will continue on Saturday, March 7. Racing for both nights begins at 8 p.m. EST/7p.m. CST/5 p.m. PST.