By: Feld Motorsports
AMSOIL Arenacross made its return to the Landers Center on Friday with the first of two nights of action in Southaven. Following a perfect evening in which he won both 250AX class main events and the RMATV/MC Head 2 Head Challenge, current championship leader and TiLUBE/Jack Link’s/TUF Racing Honda rider Jace Owen cruised to his sixth overall victory of the season. In the return of the Western Regional AX Lites Class, championship leader Ryan Breece put his Team Babbitt’s/GPF/Monster Energy Kawasaki/MMCR machine atop the podium.
In the RMATV/MC Head 2 Head Challenge, the precursor to the pair of 250AX class main events, Owen faced off against Rockstar Energy/OTSFF/Yamaha, in association with Cycle Trader and Rock River, rider Chris Blose. After grabbing the upper hand early, Owen fended off Blose to take the win and claim a championship bonus point.
Owen carried the momentum into the start of the first 250AX class main event, leading Team Babbitt’s/Monster Energy/AMSOIL Kawasaki, presented by AP Design, rider Gavin Faith and Woodstock KTM’s Daniel Herrlein around to complete the opening lap. The lead trio immediately settled in, with Faith mirroring Owen’s lap times and staying within striking distance. As Owen began to approach lapped riders in the later stages, his ability to navigate through the traffic allowed him to pull out a margin of a little more than three seconds over Faith. From there, Owen managed his advantage and went on to claim his championship-leading ninth Main Event win of the season. Herrlein went unchallenged for third, Blose finished fourth and Team Babbitt’s Travis Sewell placed fifth.
The TiLUBE/Jack Link’s/TUF Racing Honda was out front yet again to start the final 250AX class main event of the evening, with Herrlein slotting into second and Blose into third. Faith wasn’t far behind in fourth. Owen pushed in the early stages of the race, but Herrlein was able to match his lap times and keep the deficit to within 1.5 seconds. As they approached the tail end of the field to put riders a lap down, Owen pulled away over the final two laps to clinch the win by 1.6 seconds over Herrlein, who posted a career-best main event result without facing a significant challenge from Blose, third. Faith finished fourth, while Sewell again followed in fifth.
Owen’s perfect night easily secured the overall victory for the sixth time in 2017, further extending his lead in the championship standings. Herrlein’s pair of strong main events (3-2) earned him the best 250AX Class finish of his career in second, with Faith settling for third (2-4). Blose was fourth (4-3), while Sewell rounded out the top five (5-5).
After adding five points to his lead in the 250AX Class standings, Owen’s total now sits 25 points over Faith’s. Rockstar Energy/OTSFF/Yamaha’s Matt Goerke, who finished sixth on Friday (6-6), remains third and 38 points out of the lead.
The second 15-lap Western Regional AX Lites class main event of the season saw Breece put his Kawasaki out front early in front of Kawasaki rider Samuel Redman and Sportland 2/TZR/Kawasaki Team Green’s Scott Zont. Breece was able to open a half-second lead by the completion of the opening lap, while Redman came under fire from Zont, who moved into second on lap one. The clear track allowed Breece to build his lead over Zont, who settled into second, but the battle continued for Redman as Woodstock KTM’s Hunter Sayles took him on for third. After a couple laps of heavy pressure, Sayles assumed control of the final podium spot on lap three. From there the top three riders settled into their respective positions and carried through to the finish, where Breece took the win 4.8 seconds ahead of Zont. Sayles rounded out the top three.
After entering the night with just a one-point lead in the Western Regional standings, Breece ended the evening with a six-point advantage over Sayles, who jumped from fifth to second, and DrivenMX Racing KTM’s Jared Lesher, who finished fifth. Sayles and Lesher are tied for second.
Source: Amsoil Racing