By: Team Babbitt’s
Foothill Ranch, CA (March 6, 2017) – The Landers Center in Southaven, Miss. played host to round eight of the 2017 AMSOIL Arenacross Championship. Team Babbitt’s/Monster Energy/AMSOIL Kawasaki Presented by AP Designs rider Gavin Faith took a hard-fought overall podium on night one.
As the gate fell for the first main event, Faith exited turn one in second place, matching the pace of the leader and preparing to fight for the win. As the lead pack neared the end of the race, lappers became a factor and Faith lost touch with the leader, eventually crossing the finish line in second place. Teammate Travis Sewell fought hard throughout the race, and consistent and smooth laps allowed him to take the checkered flag in fifth place with teammate Gared Steinke in seventh place.
For main event two, Faith launched out of the gate in fourth with Sewell close behind in fifth place and Steinke in seventh place. Early in the race Faith battled for third position, but eventually settled into fourth, where he would remain until the checkers, taking 2-4 for third overall. It was déjà vu for Sewell with another consistent race, bringing the No. 3 KX™250F across the line for fifth place in the race and overall in the event (5-5). Steinke battled throughout the opening laps, changing positions multiple times until settling into seventh place on lap 5, where he remained until crossing the line, going 7-7 for seventh overall.
Night two at the Landers Center saw more non-stop Arenacross action and, as the gate fell for the first main event, the Team Babbitt’s team of Faith, Steinke and Sewell rounded the first turn in fifth, sixth and eighth respectively. On the second lap Faith made two passes, settling into third place for the remainder of the race. Steinke rode consistent from a sixth-place start to a sixth-place finish with Sewell making a pass for seventh on lap five, where he would remain until the checkers.
For the second main event, Steinke completed lap one in third with Sewell in sixth and Faith in 10th. Steinke pushed hard in the early stages of the event, but would lose touch with second place, crossing the line in third place for fourth overall (6-3). Sewell battled throughout the first 12 laps, racing as high as fifth position until finally settling into seventh place with three laps to go, earning seventh overall (7-7). Faith made the pass for ninth early in the race and began to settle in. A charge late in the race saw Faith climbing up to eighth, but a mistake would relegate the No. 1 KX™250F back to ninth place before taking the checkered flag, going 3-9 for sixth overall.
“The weekend had a lot of ups and downs,” said Faith. “The first night went well; an overall podium is always good for the championship. The second night started off strong, but we had some issues in the second main. We didn’t get the start we needed to be up front and it cost us. Lesson learned and we’ll be back next weekend.”
“This event was pretty intense,” said Steinke. “We struggled a bit with setup on the first night, but sorted some things out for the second. The second main on night two was obviously my strongest race of the doubleheader, and I’m happy to be on the podium where I feel I belong. I’m looking forward to the next race.”
“Night one was strong,” said Sewell. “A pair of fifths is forward progress and closer to where I want to be. We made a couple changes for the second night, and it wasn’t the right direction, and it cost us in the mains. Still, these results are a step in the direction we need to go.”