Adam Chatfield picked up where he left off when round 10 of the Monster Energy Arenacross Tour powered by Ford Ranger rolled into Sheffield Arena on Saturday night, firing his Buildbase Honda to second in a fiercely fought Main Event.
The 28-year-old former champion, third at round nine in Newcastle a fortnight ago, was in great form in the Steel City and after qualifying well he progressed to the Main Event with a comfortable 4-2 scorecard in his heat races.
After picking up a point for fourth in the head-to-head races, when the gate dropped on the final Adam got off to a great start. Moving swiftly into second, he soaked up race-long pressure from behind to record his best finish of the series.
“I’m delighted,” said Adam. “We’ve all been working so hard behind the scenes – Gary and John have been flat-out with the spanners – and that paid off tonight. I’ve said all along that I’m a podium guy and I think third last time out in Newcastle and second tonight proves my point.
“I’ve felt good all day and I feel like I’ve gelled with my Buildbase Honda, especially with the new forks from Jason at MXW. Good starts are crucial in arenacross and I got off to a flier in the Main Event, kept my focus and brought it home in second.
“The championship is out of reach but we’ve got one round left and I’m determined to sign off on top. Nothing’s certain in this sport but I feel I’ve put myself in a great position to win in London.”
With Adam’s Italian team-mate Angelo Pellegrini sidelined through injury, team boss Dave Thorpe drafted in multi-time Portuguese champion Paulo Alberto at the 11th hour.
The 26-year-old impressed immediately, running 3-3 in his heat races and held his own in the Main Event with a solid sixth-placed finish.
“It was very short notice but on Friday I accepted an invitation to ride in Sheffield,” he said. “I knew it would be fast and a good workout for me and, okay, I would have liked to finish higher up but I think for a first attempt it is a good result.”
Dave, who won the title with Adam in 2013, was delighted with his team’s performance.
“I’m very happy for Adam,” he said. “It’s easy to just concentrate on the results of the evening without appreciating how much work the riders put in between events and Adam has been working incredibly hard so second is a great reward for his efforts.
“After Angelo got hurt I drafted Paulo in at the last moment and he rose to the occasion, adapting very well to the pressure and intensity of the arenacross series at short notice.
“With just one round remaining Adam’s a strong fourth in the championship and I’m confident he will be a podium threat at the series finale in London.”
After 10 rounds Adam has moved up a place to fourth in the Pro championship standings. Buildbase Honda sits a comfortable third in the Team championship table.