After seven rounds spanning across the United States, Kawasaki rider Eric Francis captured the Pro-Am Runabout Stock Championship at the Governor’s Cup in Charleston, W.V. on his Jet Ski Ultra 300X. Coming into the final round, Francis was tied for the lead in the points standings creating a winner-takes-all scenario. After a fourth in the first moto, he was able to rebound in Moto 2 and bring it down to the final moto. Francis finished with a 4-2-2 moto score, giving him second overall on the day, but that was enough to clinch the Pro-Am Runabout Stock National Championship. In the Pro-Am Runabout Open class, Francis competed on his stock Kawasaki and finished the championship in third overall.
After a rollercoaster season, Francis closed up the points gap leading into the final round. Only three motos remained to decide the championship and he was prepared to win. In the first moto Francis was sitting second until he went down trying to make a pass for the lead and ended up finishing fourth. He got off to another great start on his Ultra300X in Moto 2 and finished second. The final moto came down to the wire, with whoever finished higher claiming the championship. Francis was able to make the pass down the front straightaway as the white flag came out and he captured the Pro-Am Runabout Stock title.
“It all came down to that last moto,” said Francis. “We were sitting third off the start and had 10 laps to make a pass on second for the championship. Each lap we were making a bit of time in the splits and started putting the pressure on. On the front straight the rider in second came across the merge to block me, but ended up scrubbing speed in doing so and we were side-by-side coming down the stretch. I knew it was my only chance, so I didn’t let off, he did, and I was able to make the pass and come around to take the win.”
Along with winning the Pro-Am Runabout Stock class, Francis has also been competing in the Pro-Am Runabout Open class on his stock Ultra 300X. He consistently finished on the podium all season long and finished third overall in the Open championship, proving the performance of the Kawasaki.
“The Kawasaki Jet Ski Ultra 300X is a great advantage,” said Francis. “It’s by far the best rough-water boat and only gets faster as the race goes on. Most riders tend to get slower as they get tired, but the Ultra 300X is so easy to ride in rough conditions that towards the end of the moto I tend to get faster. Winning the Stock class and battling upfront in the Open class on a stock Kawasaki is testament of that.”
Pro-Am Runabout Stock Results
1. Ryan Hardwick (Yamaha) 3-1-1
2. Eric Francis (Kawasaki) 4-2-2
3. Troy Snyder (Sea-Doo) 1-4-3
Pro-Am Runabout Stock Championship Standings
1. Eric Francis (Kawasaki) 418
2. Troy Snyder (Sea-Doo) 408
3. Ryan Hardwick (Yamaha) 372
Pro-Am Runabout Open Championship Standings
1. Dustin Farthing (Yamaha) 473
2. Claude Clayton (Sea-Doo) 380
3. Eric Francis (Kawasaki) 352