FRESNO, Calif . (February 11, 2012) – A huge crowd greeted the tenth round of the 2012 AMA Arenacross Series season at Fresno’s Save Mart Center. FMF Power/Poynt TUF Honda’s Jeff Gibson, of Blacklick, Ohio, won his third race of the season to close in on current Arenacross Class point’s leader and Babbitt’s Monster Energy/AMSOIL Kawasaki presented by Maxxis’ Tyler Bowers, of Danville, Ky. After a week off, the Western Regional Arenacross Lites Class Championship returned to action and witnessed Steven Mages, of Sardinia, Calif., take home his first victory of the season.
Gibson kicked off the 25-lap Arenacross Class Main Event by grabbing the holeshot and an early lead, but was trailed closely by Bowers. Six laps in, while gaining considerable ground on Gibson, Bowers crashed in the rhythm section and allowed Gibson to lengthen his lead. Babbitt’s Monster Energy/AMSOIL Kawasaki Chad Johnson, of Whinelander, Wis., took over second, but was later passed by Bowers. Gibson went on to lead all 25 laps to take home the win with Bowers and Johnson finishing in second and third, respectively.
Gibson now sits 18 points behind Bowers as the AMA Arenacross Series continues its western swing.
BNTQ.Net/Tuf Honda Racing’s Kevin Markwardt, of Freeport, Ill., opened up the 18-lap main event in the Western Regional Arenacross Lites Class by capturing the holeshot. Reed and Reese Racing KTM’s Michael McDade trailed in second and Mages in third. Four laps in, Markwardt and McDade were bar to bar, but a slight mishap dismounted McDade from his bike and allowed Mages to take over in second, while Markwardt still controlled the lead.
Behind Mages, Team Airide KTM’s Daniel Blair, McDade and Team Faith KTM’s Kevin Johnson traded places for several laps. With just nine laps to go, the top four riders were all side by side. Shortly after, Markwardt, who controlled the lead, made a mistake, allowing Mages to move in front, with Blair and Johnson in tow. Mages checked out, but the remaining laps hosted a tight battle for second between Johnson and Blair. Through it all, Blair managed to hold off Johnson to secure second place and Johnson rounded out the podium in third.
In the Dash for cash, Gibson started out in front, but went down three laps in. Bowers took over the vacated spot and held onto the lead to win the race. In total, $900 was donated, which marked an all-time high this season. Money went to local Fresno, Calif., charity Break the Barriers.