Babbitt’s Monster Energy Amsoil Kawasaki’s Chad Johnson and Tyler Bowers each came away with a win at the two-night race weekend at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Wilkes Barre, Pa. for Round 4 of the 2012 AMA Arenacross series. On Friday, two-time Arenacross Champion Johnson would get his first win of the season while teammates Bowers and Josh Demuth finished fifth and seventh, respectively. Saturday night saw Bowers take the win with Johnson rounding out the podium in third and Demuth in sixth.
First Win of the Season
After starting the season off strong, Johnson was determined to get on top of the box. Johnson started up front and immediately started matching the leaders pace with teammate Bowers close behind. As the laps clicked off it was clear that Johnson’s KX(TM)250F was the fastest on the track and once they hit the halfway point, he looked to make his move. On lap 14 Johnson would make the pass for the lead and develop a six-second gap by the time the checkers waved.
Leading the Field
Bowers started up front both nights, but was looking to bounce back from Friday night’s fifth place. Like his teammate Johnson, Bowers started up front and stalked the leaders before making his move. Late in the race, Bowers would grab the lead and walk away from the field. With his win Saturday, Bowers has won four of the first seven main events, the most of any rider thus far.
“I felt very confident going into Friday’s main,” said Bowers. “Especially since it was a really soft, rutted track which suits my style. I decided it’s not about beating the riders, it’s about beating the track. We made a few small changes to my already fast KX250F, which helped a lot with my start.”
Demuth has been silently putting in great performances in the first four rounds of the series and continues to put his KX250F at the front of the field. Finishing sixth on Friday and seventh on Saturday, Demuth’s consistency puts him fourth in the points standings, just two points back from teammate Johnson.
The competition started to worry early on in the two-day race weekend as Bowers started the weekend off with a win in Friday night’s four-lap Dash for Cash shootout. The speed of the KX250F was the common theme in Wilkes Barre as both main events saw Kawasaki up front and posting the fastest lap times of the field.
“Most of the track tended to be very one-lined so the start was what mattered most,” said Bowers. “I got off to a great start and just pressured the guys in front of me to make a mistake I could capitalize on.”
Winning is nothing new to Johnson, but getting that first win of the season is no easy task. After winning Friday night, Johnson was looking to carry that success into Saturday. After proving his KX250F was the fastest in the field, Johnson worked his way into third place on Saturday to keep his place on the podium.
Moving into the New Year
The 2012 AMA Arenacross series will continue on the east coast with Round 5 taking place January 6 – 8, 2012 at VanAndel Arena in Grand Rapids, Mich. Babbitt’s Monster Energy Amsoil Kawasaki riders currently sit second through fourth and look to take over the top three positions in the points standings. Bowers currently sits a mere six points out of the lead and will look to re-capture the red plate in the New Year. Meanwhile teammates Chad Johnson and Josh Demuth are in a tight race for the next spot in line as only two points separate them.
AMA Arenacross Series
Mohegan Sun Arena – Wilkes Barre, Pa.
December 9-11, 2011
Arenacross Class Results – Friday
1. CHAD JOHNSON, BABBITT’S MONSTER ENERGY AMSOIL KAWASAKI
2. Jeff Gibson, Honda
3. Cole Siebler, Honda
4. Kelly Smith, KTM
5. TYLER BOWERS, BABBITT’S MONSTER ENERGY AMSOIL KAWASAKI
6. MICHAEL MCDADE, KAWASAKI
7. JOSH DEMUTH, BABBITT’S MONSTER ENERGY AMSOIL KAWASAKI
8. Travis Sewell, KTM
9. Willy Browning, KTM
10. ZACH AMES, KAWASAKI
Arenacross Class Results – Saturday
1. TYLER BOWERS, BABBITT’S MONSTER ENERGY AMSOIL KAWASAKI
2. Kelly Smith, KTM
3. CHAD JOHNSON, BABBITT’S MONSTER ENERGY AMSOIL KAWASAKI
4. Jeff Gibson, Honda
5. Willy Browning, KTM
6. JOSH DEMUTH, BABBITT’S MONSTER ENERGY AMSOIL KAWASAKI
7. Nathan Skaggs, Honda
8. ZACH AMES, KAWASAKI
9. STEVEN MAGES, KAWASAKI
10. Ryan Zimmer, Honda
Arenacross Points Standings
1. Jeff Gibson, Honda, 144
2. TYLER BOWERS, BABBITT’S MONSTER ENERGY AMSOIL KAWASAKI, 138
3. CHAD JOHNSON, BABBITT’S MONSTER ENERGY AMSOIL KAWASAKI, 129
4. JOSH DEMUTH, BABBITT’S MONSTER ENERGY AMSOIL KAWASAKI, 127
5. Kelly Smith, KTM, 117
6. Nathan Skaggs, Honda, 86
7. ZACH AMES, KAWASAKI, 79
8. Willy Browning, KTM, 78
9. Tyler Bright, KTM, 56
10. Michael Willard, KTM, 55