HOBBS, NM—The 2020 AMA Kicker Arenacross Series visited Hobbs, New Mexico on Saturday, January 11th for Round Three of the series. Jace Owen and Kyle Peters, from the Phoenix Racing Honda Team, alongside Team Babbitt's Kyle Bitterman, topped the podium in both the 250 Pro Sport and 450 Pro Sport main events. After Owen convincingly won the 250 Pro Sport main and started the 450 Pro Sport main in first place, it looked like he was going to run away with it, but teammate Kyle Peters wasn't going to back down so easily.
Jace Owen kicked off the show with a win in the 250 Pro Sport heat one, followed by Darian Sanayei (2nd) and Skyler Adams (3rd). Kyle Bitterman, Greye Tate and Josh Hernandez took the top three spots, respectively, in heat two. In the third heat, Kyle Peters ran away with it, with Gared Steinke coming in second and Mason Kerr in third.
The 450 Pro Sport heats followed suit with Kyle Peters winning the first one, followed by Gared Steinke (2nd) and Kyle Bitterman (3rd). In heat two, Jace Owen led the charge and finished first, with Darian Sanayei taking second and Preston Taylor coming in third.
The first main event of the night, the 250 Pro Sport, was all Jace Owen. He came out of the gate dialed in and didn't let up for the entire 12 laps. Kyle Peters finished safely in second place, and the real battle of this main was for third place. Gared Steinke had been in third the entire race, until Kyle Bitterman edged him out on the final lap to sneak onto the podium.
When the gates dropped for the 450 Pro Sport main event, Jace pulled through the crowd by the first turn of the first lap to secure the initial lead. A handful of challengers stayed close behind him the entirety of lap one. On the first turn of the second lap, Kyle Peters saw an opportunity to steal the lead and he took it. In doing so, Jace Owen went down and dropped to the back of the pack. Not to be discouraged, Owen road hard and moved into third place by the 8th lap and was hot on Bitterman's tail for second place. It looked as though Owen was going to pull it off near the end of the final lap, but Bitterman wasn't having it. Ultimately Bitterman held off Owen and the two took second and third place respectively. Kyle Peters finished the race in first place.
With the win in the 450 Pro Main, Kyle Peters moves into first place in the Overall Series Standings over Jace Owen by one point. In doing so he may have created an inner team rivalry for the remainder of the season. One thing is for sure, watching these two battle it out has proven to be wildly entertaining thus far.
Quotes from the Weekend:
Jace Owen: [Discussing the 450 Pro Main Event] Well that's how it is, I'm proud of what I could do - worked my way from the back forward - but if he [Kyle Peters] is going to race me like that... I'll race him like that. That's how it's going to be now. It sucks when it's your teammate, but that's how it's going to be.
Kyle Peters: [On winning the 450 Pro Main Event] For not feeling well, for having the flu... I mean I still wanted to win. We were determined to get up here. I came at Jace a little hot but that's racing and we're going to keep it tight.
Kyle Bitterman: [On hold off Jace Owen in the 450 Pro Main Event] You know I bulldogged it. I held my line. I'm really happy we got through the night. I was surprised to see Jace Owen come up in main two... I turned around and held my line there too, it worked out.
250 Pro Sport
450 Pro Sport
AMA Kicker Arenacross Overall Series Standings
Main Image: Jack Jaxson