Buildbase Honda wins 2018 Power Maxed Arenacross Tour Team Championship.
The French pairing of former AX Pro champ Fabien Izoird and new-to-AX Charles Lefrancois secured the prestigious Team Championship title for Dave Thorpe’s Buildbase Honda team, but it wasn’t all plain sailing (or riding) …
Buildbase Honda led the team championship from the opening round at Manchester with 37 points over SR75 World Suzuki on 34, and FRO Systems on 23. The team went on to pull away from its closest competitors at Newcastle and again at Birmingham, before going into the double-header halfway-point of the 2018 Tour, at Belfast, nine points in front of SR75 Suzuki.
Belfast illustrated just how vital it is for the teams to get both their pilots in the Main Event as, with Izoird failing to make it through to the 14-lap point-scoring final, SR75 World Suzuki in the hands of Thomas Ramette and Cyrille Coulon swiftly moved to the top step of the team series. The Suzuki team consolidated its leading position and left the fifth AX round at Belfast on 145 points, with Buildbase Honda on 135 and FRO Systems on 129.
When the Tour hit the penultimate round at Sheffield, FRO Systems’ star rider Cedric Soubeyras (France) was leading the Pro championship on his Suzuki. However, the team’s chances of also taking the Team championship were slim; as has been proved time and time again, it’s all about the combined points and getting two team members into a strong points-scoring position at every round. Soub won the round, but each of the SR75 Suzuki and Buildbase Honda riders finished in the top ten, meaning the battle was on for Wembley.
In fine AX style, Wembley didn’t disappoint on the drama front, but the gathered audience were probably unaware of the Team stakes. In a reverse of fortunes, both Buildbase Honda riders (Izoird and Lefrancois) were safely through to the Main Event and took fourth and fifth overall. Ramette, in second overall, rode a lonely race due to his team-mate Coulon being struck down by flu and unable to make the last round to claim points. A jubilant Soubeyras took his first AX Pro title and, thanks to a number of points also scored by his FRO partner Ashley Greedy, the team rounded out the Team Championship podium.
2018 Power Maxed Team Championship
1. Buildbase Honda, 233 points
2. SR75 World Suzuki, 219
3. Team FRO Systems, 193
4. I-Fly JK Yamaha, 149
5. MVR-D St Blazey Husqvarna, 137
6. Team Green Holeshot Kawasaki, 117
7. Shocktech Kawasaki, 73
8. Geartech Husqvarna, 48
9. RFX Suzuki, 44
10. GL12 KTM, 12