Toyota AMA Arenacross Series Notebook: Sacramento & Greensboro

$3 off advance coupons available at Wendy’s for Greensboro race this Saturday; Sacramento ARCO Arena Box Office has special $3-$5 off group rates as the Toyota AMA Arenacross Series makes its final stop out west

 

AURORA, Ill. (Feb. 21, 2008) – What a difference a week makes! Heading into last week’s Pikeville (Ky.) Toyota AMA Arenacross Series round Bad Boy/TUF/Honda’s Chad Johnson had a nine-point lead (316-307) over hard-charging Kelly Smith (Monster/Babbitt’s/Kawasaki), with Smith’s teammate Brock Sellards not too far behind in the chase for the overall 2007-’08 Toyota AMA Arenacross Series championship.

 

Who wanted it most was debatable as – early on – Sellards looked like he was going to be the guy to beat at Pikeville. But out of the three the former Toyota AMA Arenacross Series champions Johnson was inevitably up to the task most, parlaying a 1-1 finish into a now 33-point lead over Smith (366-333).

 

The results could in all likelihood make Pikeville the turning point of the 2007-’08 Toyota AMA Arenacross Series championship.

 

“I don’t think there’s any question that Pikeville will be considered the turning point,” said Toyota AMA Arenacross Series announcer Tim Cotter. “Chad Johnson took a couple HUGE steps toward winning his second Toyota AMA Arenacross Series championship. It’s not going to get any easier for the other riders to make up points as the series splits this weekend to Sacramento and Greensboro.”

 

TUF Racing and Babbitt’s have stated they will be on opposite ends of the country this weekend with Chad Johnson contesting Greensboro (N.C.) and Kelly Smith and Sellards contesting Sacramento. In fact, TUF Racing boss Dave Antolak was quite vehement in his announcement of not hiding where Johnson will be racing.

 

“I want everyone to know where we are going,” said Antolak. “We are not trying to avoid anyone. I would think Kelly would want to go to the same round as us if he really wants to beat us straight up. But more importantly, I don’t want anyone to thing that Chad is trying to avoid the competition. We have not done that all year and we will not stop with this round.

 

“It’s now up to the Kawasaki team if they want to beat us straight up or not. I personally don’t think they will try.”

 

Antolak will likely find that answer to be correct, though according to Babbitt’s, it has nothing to do with the competition. Said Kelly Smith in his recent Arenacross.com interview: “We’re going to Sacramento for the TV coverage. At this point there’s no real strategy except to win races and pray for a miracle!”

 

This from Live Nation’s Robert Hansen: “A couple months ago I mentioned in the Toyota AMA Arenacross Series Notebook that I thought Chad Johnson had the best chance of winning the title this season. After last week’s double wins at Pikeville it look like everything is going his way. Let me tell you the reason I made that statement: Last season Chad told me that he thought he would not return to Toyota AMA Arenacross Series racing, citing ‘matter of factly’ that he was planning on going into the family business.”

 

Hansen continued: “As fate would have it TUF Racing offered him a place on a championship racing team and Chad’s care-free attitude kind of said ‘What the heck!’ There would be no pressure on Chad as he’s teammates with the defending Toyota AMA Arenacross Series champion, Danny Smith, and he could enter the season healthy and without that nagging leg injury that kept him out of the title chase last season.”

 

The final point Hansen made regarding Johnson and why he’s where he’s at today was that not only is he the most fit rider on the Toyota AMA Arenacross Series tour, but also possibly because he was the least serious about the title out of all the top contenders!

 

With 125 points left to be had through the final round in Green Bay (Wis.), as Smith put it, it’ll take a “miracle” to sway that 33-point lead Johnson now enjoys. Cotter added that this weekend’s split series round could be looked at as a “push,” with neither Chad Johnson nor Kelly Smith gaining any ground. In fact, it may be more difficult on the Babbitt’s guys as Torco/Honda Monster Energy® Supercross Lites class racers Dan Reardon (who swept Reno this season) and Billy Laninovich are rumored to be considering racing Sacramento. 

 

Cotter added that, “Chad Johnson is riding as good as I’ve ever seen him ride. He’s healthy versus this time last year when he had to pull out with an injury.” And as for last Saturday’s main event in Pikeville, Cotter, who called the event, said “Chad got a surprisingly good jump off the start and Brock was riding so aggressively that I think he got excited and went for it – ended up taking himself and Kelly out.”

 

Finally, congrats to Toyota AMA Arenacross Series East Arenacross Lites class champion, Bad Boy Power Drink’s Tyler Bright. Bright went 1-3 at Pikeville to secure the overall title. Fans can now check out Bright on the #709 Team Bad Boy Supercross class bike at Monster Energy® Supercross beginning this weekend in Atlanta.

 

2007-’08 AMA Arenacross Class Point Standings 

1.       Chad Johnson, Hon, 366

2.       Kelly Smith, Kaw, 333

3.       Brock Sellards, Kaw, 312

4.       Teddy Maier, Hon, 288

5.       Kevin Johnson, Yam, 273

6.       Keith Johnson, Yam, 272

7.       Tom Hofmaster, Yam, 219

8.       Jim Neese, Suz, 220

9.       Gray Davenport, Kaw, 190

10.   Robbie Reynard, Suz, 188

 

Advance tickets for the Feb. 23 Toyota AMA Arenacross Series round at Sacramento’s ARCO Arena are available through www.arenacross.com <http://www.arenacross.com/> , at the ARCO Arena Box Office and Ticketmaster Outlets or PCP Motorsports. Show times are Saturday, 7:30 p.m. and Sunday (amateurs) at 12:00. Doors open Saturday at 6:30 p.m., Sunday at 11 a.m. Saturday advance tickets are $18 to $25 for adults, $5 for kids ages 2-12. Sunday’s tickets are $18 for adults, $5 for kids. $3-$5 off group races available through ARCO Arena Box Office. All seats $2 more day of show.

 

Advance tickets for the Feb. 23 Toyota AMA Arenacross Series round at Greensboro’s Coliseum are available through www.arenacross.com <http://www.arenacross.com/> , at the Coliseum Box Office and www.ticketmaster.com <http://www.ticketmaster.com/> . Show times are Saturday, 7:30 p.m. and Sunday (amateurs) at 12:00. Doors open Saturday at 6:30 p.m., Sunday at 11 a.m. Saturday advance tickets are $16 to $20 for adults, $5 for kids ages 2-12. Sunday’s tickets are $16 for adults, $5 for kids. $3 advance coupons available at Wendy’s. All seats $2 more day of show.

 

ABOUT LIVE NATION

Live Nation is the future of the music business. With the most live concerts, music venues and festivals in the world and the most comprehensive concert search engine on the web, Live Nation is revolutionizing the music industry: onstage and online. Headquartered in Los Angeles, California, Live Nation is listed on the New York Stock Exchange, trading under the symbol “LYV.” Additional information about the company can be found at www.livenation.com <3.       Brock Sellards, Kaw, 312

4.       Teddy Maier, Hon, 288

5.       Kevin Johnson, Yam, 273

6.       Keith Johnson, Yam, 272

7.       Tom Hofmaster, Yam, 219

8.       Jim Neese, Suz, 220

9.       Gray Davenport, Kaw, 190

10.   Robbie Reynard, Suz, 188

 

Advance tickets for the Feb. 23 Toyota AMA Arenacross Series round at Sacramento’s ARCO Arena are available through www.arenacross.com <http://www.arenacross.com/> , at the ARCO Arena Box Office and Ticketmaster Outlets or PCP Motorsports. Show times are Saturday, 7:30 p.m. and Sunday (amateurs) at 12:00. Doors open Saturday at 6:30 p.m., Sunday at 11 a.m. Saturday advance tickets are $18 to $25 for adults, $5 for kids ages 2-12. Sunday’s tickets are $18 for adults, $5 for kids. $3-$5 off group races available through ARCO Arena Box Office. All seats $2 more day of show.

 

Advance tickets for the Feb. 23 Toyota AMA Arenacross Series round at Greensboro’s Coliseum are available through www.arenacross.com <http://www.arenacross.com/> , at the Coliseum Box Office and www.ticketmaster.com <http://www.ticketmaster.com/> . Show times are Saturday, 7:30 p.m. and Sunday (amateurs) at 12:00. Doors open Saturday at 6:30 p.m., Sunday at 11 a.m. Saturday advance tickets are $16 to $20 for adults, $5 for kids ages 2-12. Sunday’s tickets are $16 for adults, $5 for kids. $3 advance coupons available at Wendy’s. All seats $2 more day of show.

 

ABOUT LIVE NATION

Live Nation is the future of the music business. With the most live concerts, music venues and festivals in the world and the most comprehensive concert search engine on the web, Live Nation is revolutionizing the music industry: onstage and online. Headquartered in Los Angeles, California, Live Nation is listed on the New York Stock Exchange, trading under the symbol “LYV.” Additional information about the company can be found at www.livenation.com <http://www.livenation.com/>  under the “About Us” section.

; color: #0000ff”>http://www.livenation.com/>  under the “About Us” section.