The city of Birmingham hosted the first of two Monster Energy Arenacross, powered by Ford Ranger, rounds on Saturday night at the Genting Arena.

The first night of racing – round six of 11 – was as eventful as ever, the 2016 Monster Energy Arenacross Tour has yet to disappoint.

We have now passed the halfway point in this year’s series and it was defending champion Thomas Ramette on his SR75 Molson Racing Suzuki who was able to take the win on Saturday night and start what could be a surge for the title as we head in to the final stretch of the Arenacross races.


The drama began early on Saturday afternoon as arguably the series’ main star, Josh Hansen unceremoniously pulled out of the night’s racing and with it the entire series.

Hansen has so far kept the details of his withdrawal from the Monster Energy Arenacross Tour to himself.

His Twitter account hinted at an issue with AX promoter and thanked the fans for their support.

Series promoter e22 Sports released a statement and you can read it in full here.

On Hansen quitting Arenacross, promoter Matt Bates said: “It’s sad that the series wasn’t for Josh, but that’s just the way things sometimes go.”

Adding: “The Arenacross Tour is of course about more than just one rider, and we have a host of amazing, talented and loyal riders and teams competing in the championship.”

The recently dropped Monster Energy athlete is a polarising figure with fans but his AMA Supercross experience provided a different approach to the tight and technical AX tracks on the tour, as can be seen in the video (below) from the head-to-head final last weekend in Belfast.

But Hanny hasn’t owned Arenacross like many had expected and last night in Birmingham the remaining riders quickly helped the crowd forget the no-show, with the racing on Saturday just as hot – maybe even hotter than ever.

Youth and Pro Lites

Ben ‘Beans’ Clayton took the holeshot in the Supermini race. Although he didn’t hold the lead for long as series leader Harry Kimber soon passed him by and stretched a nice lead as he launched the finish line double.

As Kimber stretched his lead Lewis Hall made a move around Clayton to take over second position. Clayton sat in a Team Green sandwich with Hall just in front and Kacey Hird just behind.

In a daring move Kacey leaped the finish double and was able to pass Clayton. The supermini race was eventually cut short as former race winner, Ben Burridge, crashed hard attempting the finish line leap.

This caused a red flag situation and the race would finish as it stood with Kimber in first, Hall second and Hird third. After what looked like a nasty get off Burridge was able to get up and walk away.

In the 65 class Tye Jones took a huge holeshot before being passed by Kiean Boughen. Jak Taylor sat third early on before being passed by series leader Ollie Colmer.

In one of the best 65 class races to date these top four riders battled for supremacy. The Brummie crowd really got behind these young racers as the last lap board came out. Colmer used this crowd encouragement to urge him on as he tried to hunt down Boughen.

However, Colmer just ran out of time. Boughen was able to take the win, Colmer was second and Tye Jones third.

The Pro lites race was a scorcher. The two top runners, Joe Clayton and George Clark were tangled up in a first corner pile up which put them both on the back foot. In an amazing display of Arenacross racing Joe Clayton was able to carve his way through the field coming from the floor to take the race win.

George Clark followed and was able to pass up into second position. Jordan Moxey finished up third after leading the field early.


The Brummie crowd was on the lookout for a British rider to cheer on throughout the evening’s racing and it looked as though Ashley Greedy might’ve been that guy as he claimed the holeshot in the first Pro heat. But he was quickly passed by fellow Brit Jack Brunell as well as the current point’s leader Fabien Izoird.

This allowed the front two riders to sprint away from the field and battle it out for the top spot. Eventually Izoird emerged victorious after a nice fight with Brunell.

Thomas Ramette had a quiet start to the night finishing up the first heat in third place after making a few passes in order to get there.

Yet again the French were on form in Pro heat 2. Florent Richier, Cyrille Coulon and Cedric Soubeyras were the riders that were able to make quick starts and they led the field (in that order) on lap one.

It is also worth noting that this was an uncharacteristically good start for Soubeyras, the question was could he bring that to the main event and finally grab an overall win in 2016?

After making a great start and holding down the race lead early on Florent Richier slipped down the leaderboard as both Coulon and Soubeyras were able to make passes around the LPE Kawasaki rider.

As the laps counted down Soubeyras made use of his great technique through the whoop section and closed in on Coulon.

As the pair headed into the final corner they were side by side. In yet another photo finish this season it was initially unclear as to who the victor might have been. Ultimately Cyrille Coulon was credited with the win by just a 0.025 second advantage over Soubeyras. Florent Richier crossed the line in third.

Pro heat 3 would see all of our championship contenders – Izoird, Soubeyras and Ramette – line up against each other.

Ramette was able to grab the holeshot followed by Izoird and Soubeyras. The race was well and truly on…and we were certainly not disappointed.

The three Frenchmen battled for supremacy throughout the race. Izoird was able to find a way around Ramette to take over the lead. That left the two rivals, Ramette and Soubeyras to battle it out for second.

After several back and forth exchanges Soubeyras was able to emerge with a firm grasp on second position, that’s the order that they finished the race; Izoird first, Soubeyras second and Ramette third.

This left Ramette motivated to come out swinging in the main…but he had to get through the head-to-head gauntlet first.

Ramette’s team-mate Cyrille Coulon was the man to watch in heat 4. The SR75 rider faltered out of the gate allowing Richier to take the holeshot and early race lead.

Coulon quickly made moves around Jack Brunell and Adam Chatfield taking over second position. The Frenchman then turned his attention to his countryman and proceeded to hunt down the race leader, Florent Richier.

Coulon had a great line through the whoop section and was able to blow by Richier and take the lead. Coulon went on to take the win, followed by Richier. Jack Brunell was able to fend off Adam Chatfield to secure third spot.


As always the LCQ provided a heap load of carnage. The first attempt of the race was red flagged after Jordan Booker’s horrendous first lap crash. Thankfully Booker was able to limp away from this gnarly get off.

After the restart it was the King of LCQs Angello Pellegrini who was able to take the race win and move to the final. He was joined by Harri Kullas after the Finish rider was able to fend off attacks from Brit Matt Bayliss. The British rider would still find himself lining up for the main as he was selected as the promotors choice.


Saturday night in Birmingham may have featured the best head-to-head racing so far this year.

A notable match-up was Soubeyras vs Ramette. However, sparks failed to fly despite the history between the two. Soubeyras took the win.

In the first H2H semi-final Soubeyras took on Izoird in what was an epic duel.

Izoird had the early lead but Soubeyras soon passed. But he then made a huge mistake that should have had him in the dirt.

Somehow Soubeyras managed to save it but he couldn’t stop Izoird from passing. That should have been it right there.

But Soubeyras – riding with a bad injury form the previous round – wasn’t done yet. By the time the pair were through the whoops they were bar-to-bar and Soubeyras rubbed Izoird out wide and took the win and claimed a spot in the H2H final.

Coulon won his semi-final to join Soubeyras in a fight for the top honours.

After a dramatic to start to the final, in which we saw both riders go off the track in the first turn, Soubeyras was able to take a relatively easy win and the extra championship points.

Main Event

Once again on Saturday evening Richier made a flying to start to take the early race lead.

Ramette followed the LPE rider closely. Back to form Soubeyras was buried in the pack early and he was joined by Izoird.

Coulon sat third early on and looked eager to get around his team-mate Ramette.

Soon both Izoird and Soubeyras would also join this fight between the SR75 team-mates. This intense battle soon got hotter as the gap between race leader, Richier and the snarling pack behind him diminished. We had a five way battle for first on our hands.

The pressure seemed to be too much for Richier as Ramette was able to make a pass for the lead, that rattled the LPE rider as Coulon, Izoird and Soubeyras all made similar passes. Richier dropped from first to fifth just like that.

As the end drew near Ramette controlled the race, his team-mate Coulon sat second and Izoird was third.

Izoird however, still had more business to attend to. The easy going Frenchman made an aggressive move on the SR75 rider to pass into second place.

Izoird then turned his attention to the race leader. But time wasn’t on his side, the former champion had to settle for second position and watch the reigning champ take the race win, while Coulon came in third.

Ramette had bounced back strong after a lacklustre weekend in Belfast: “Well I felt I actually had a good weekend last week, there was just some passes that weren’t so clean.

“But anyway I was looking forward to racing here in Birmingham, to have a good, clean race. It was nice to be on the podium with my team-mate and also with Fabien.

“We are all friends off the track, so it’s nice to share the podium with them.

“I just want to say thanks to my team, they do a great job with the bike and to make sure everything is perfect for the weekend.”

“I didn’t get any points in the head-to-head so that’s not so great for the championship. I think I maybe gained some points on Cedric but not on Izoird. I’m taking it race by race.”

We asked what went through Ramette’s mind when he lined up next Soubeyras in the H2H? “I don’t forget. I will never forget. But you know I wanted to make a clean race, I’m not a dirty rider.

“Cedric was a little bit faster and I made a few mistakes. I tried to forget about last weekend and just focus on my racing, that’s what I did tonight.”

The 2016 Monster Energy Arenacross Tour continues with round seven today at the Genting Arena in Birmingham.

Main Event

  1. Thomas Ramette #1 SR75 Molson Racing Suzuki
  2. Fabien Izoird #871 LPE Kawasaki
  3. Cyrille Coulon #5 SR75 Molson Racing Suzuki
  4. Cedric Soubeyras #120 Geartec Yamaha
  5. Florent Richier #2 LPE Kawasaki
  6. Jack Brunell #155 SJR Kawasaki
  7. Adam Chatfield #407 Buildbase Honda
  8. Matt Bayliss #4 Wooldridge Demolition
  9. Collin Jurin #3 Xbladez Husqvarna
  10. Angelo Pellegrini #941 Buildbase Honda

Pro Championship

  1. Fabien Izoird #871 LPE Kawasaki, 116 points
  2. Cedric Soubeyras #120 Geartec Yamaha, 113 points
  3. Thomas Ramette #1 SR75 Molson Racing Suzuki, 101 points
  4. Cyrille Coulon #5 SR75 Molson Racing Suzuki, 99 points
  5. Josh Hansen #100 SJR Kawasaki, 79 points
  6. Adam Chatfield #407 Buildbase Honda, 73 points
  7. Matt Bayliss #4 Wooldridge Demolition, 69 points
  8. Angelo Pellegrini #941 Buildbase Honda, 68 points
  9. Jack Brunell #155 SJR Kawasaki, 68 points
  10. Florent Richier #2 LPE Kawasaki, 56 points

Team Championship

  1. SR75 Molson Racing Suzuki, 200 points
  2. LPE Kawasaki, 172 points
  3. SJR Kawasaki, 147 points
  4. Buildbase Honda, 141 points
  5. Geartec Yamaha, 115 points
  6. Wooldridge Demolition Honda, 80 points
  7. Xbladez Husqvarna, 51 points
  8. Hitachi Revo Husqvarna, 31 points
  9. MVRD Fuel Husqvarna, 30 points
  10. Shocktech Honda, 4 points

Pro Lites Main Event

  1. Joe Clayton #14
  2. George Clarke #161
  3. Jordan Moxey #981

Pro Lites Champs

  1. Joe Clayton #14
  2. George Clarke #161
  3. Jordan Moxey #981

Supermini Main

  1. Harry Kimber #78
  2. Lewis Hall #419
  3. Ben Clayton #11

Supermini Champs

  1. Harry Kimber #78
  2. Lewis Hall #419
  3. Kacey Hird #28

65 Main

  1. Kiean Boughen #5
  2. Ollie Colmer #6
  3. Tye Jones #221

65 Champs

  1. Ollie Colmer #6
  2. Kiean Boughen #5
  3. Jak Taylor #22