2017 AMSOIL Arenacross Portland

The Rockstar Energy OTSFF Yamaha, in association with Rock River and CycleTrader, team came into the tenth round of the 2017 AMSOIL Arenacross series rejuvenated and ready to perform as the chase for the Ricky Carmichael Cup was officially set to begin. Matt Goerke was back after taking a week off to rehab his leg injury and Chris Blose was looking to rebound after an unlucky weekend one week prior in the southeast. 

Blose got the ball rolling early on in qualifying and started the day on a positive note by laying down the fastest qualifying time heading into the night show. Goerke wasn’t able to match the pace of his teammate in his return to racing, but he still managed to clock the tenth fastest time and put himself in a decent position for the night of racing.

In the first heat race, Goerke lined up and managed to pull a solid start that placed him within the top five throughout the opening laps. The Floridian stalked Gared Steinke for a couple of minutes, but eventually made the move at the halfway point to promote himself to third position. Unfortunately, it was short lived and Goerke dropped back to fifth position before the checkered flag. Although he missed out on the RM ATV/MC Head 2 Head Challenge, he earned himself a spot in the main event with relative ease. Blose was seeded into the second heat race and he ended up laying down a magnificent start thanks to the power of his Yamaha. The rider out of Arizona battled for the lead against the defending champion, Gavin Faith, throughout the majority of the race, but eventually gave way to the KTM of Daniel Herrlein which put him in third position at the end of the ten lap affair.

Blose was the only rider to compete in the RM ATV/MC Head 2 Head Challenge for hte team and he got off to a good start as he was able to best Ben Lamay in the first round. He moved onto the next round and was pitted against one of his main championship rivals, Jace Owen, and unfortunately didn’t come away from the exchange on top which sent him back to the truck to prepare for the main events. 

The pair of Rockstar Energy OTSFF Yamaha, in association with Rock River and CycleTrader, teammates had polar opposite starts in the opening main event; Blose found himself in immediate contention for the podium with a third place start and Goerke was battling to stay within the top ten on the opening lap after a bit of misfortune early in the race. He did his best to make up the time that he lost in the early stages of the moto and was able to work his way back to an eighth place finish after slicing through the pack and turning consistent lap times throughout the duration of the race. Meanwhile, Blose was able to match the pace of the leaders at the front of the field but just fell short of making a challenge for the lead. He showed fantastic speed and consistency throughout the entire race and held down the final spot on the podium over the course of the fifteen laps. It was the same story yet again in the second main event as Goerke found himself buried in the back of the pack and Blose settled into the fight for the podium. Blose sat in fourth position for the first couple of minutes as he paced Herrlein and eyed up a passing opportunity, eventually moving into the last spot on the box on the fourth lap in an attempt to keep Jace Owen and Gavin Faith in his sights. It was a carbon copy of the first moto as he maintained third position all the way until the checkered flag and finished only a couple of seconds behind the leaders, consequently securing third place overall. Goerke did his best to come back from dead last after an incident early on, but a chaotic main event would only allow him to make his way back to thirteenth position. 

Goerke commented “I did everything I could to be there with my leg injury and I was doing okay, but a few falls messed up my results. It doesn’t feel like I made it any worse, so I think this week I should be able to get some training in and be much better for the next weekend. I’m prepared to work harder to do what I need to do to catch back up to my competitors.” 

“Portland was a good overall start for the team. Chris came away with a solid third place overall. Matt is coming back from a leg injury that he had been resting and unfortunately the night didn’t go as planned for him as he found himself on the ground in each main event. Both riders are looking to improve next weekend in Reno and be there at the end of the chase. The team is working very hard and I would like to thank everyone involved for their dedication and long days,” said the Team Manager, Steve Simms. 

The Rockstar Energy OTSFF Yamaha, in association with Rock River and CycleTrader, team wasn’t able to put together results for both riders, but they still remain in a solid position heading into the second round of the chase for the Ricky Carmichael Cup next weekend in Reno, which will host the eleventh round of the 2017 AMSOIL Arenacross series.

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