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2010 Costa Mesa Speedway
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Costa Mesa Speedway
Orange County Fairgrounds
Costa Mesa, California

Costa Mesa 42nd Season Opener
April 24, 2010 - Costa Mesa
By: Ryan Evans

Costa Mesa’s new season officially dawned with a familiar face earning top honors as former National Champion “Flyin” Mike Faria captured the main event at the world famous venue’s 42nd Season Opener.

Faria started in gate one and led the pack into turn one. Jimmy Fishback, winner of the previous week’s main event, had his chances of victory end when he went down in turn one. Faria was chased down the back straight by Northern California’s Tommy Hedden. Hedden stayed within striking distance the entire four laps, but couldn’t force a mistake. Faria was first to the checkered flag, Hedden finished second, Tyson Burmeister was third, Buck Blair finished fourth, and Fishback was fifth.

Former Youth National Champion Jason Ramirez kicked off the heat races with an impressive win ahead of Shawn “Mad Dog” McConnell and “Fast” Eddie Castro. Faria gave a preview of the main by beating Hedden and Burmeister in the second heat. Josh Larsen led the third heat into turn one, but lost a chain and caused a pileup. Blair took advantage of the second chance and scored the victory. John Marquez led the fourth heat for nearly a lap before Bobby “Boogaloo” Schwartz went by. Gary Hicks passed Schwartz on the next lap and led the rest of the way.

McConnell beat Devin DeFreece to begin round two. Doug “The Destroyer” Nicol handed Faria his only defeat of the night in the next heat. Hicks made it two wins in a row ahead of Hedden. Blair finished the second round with a victory over Fishback.

Hicks remained perfect by beating McConnell and John Houston to open the final round of heats. Faria earned his second victory in a row with a defeat of Ramirez. Event 19 required three attempts and Nicol was awarded the victory after a crash brought a premature end to the race. Hedden defeated Blair and Schwartz to bring an end to the heats. Burmeister defeated Houston in a runoff for the final spot in the semis.

Faria easily won the first semi with Burmeister using a good start from gate four to get him into second and join Faria in the main. Hicks led the second semi before lifting on the exit of turn four and allowing MXRC teammates Fishback and Hedden to slip past for first and second and the transfers into the main. Blair was victorious in the Last Chance to book the fifth and final spot in the main.

Austin Novratil led the first two attempts and was awarded the victory after a crash ended the third attempt to complete the Support Main Event. Joey Holt finished second, Rudy Laurer was third, Michael Raines was fourth, and Tyson Talkington was credited with fifth.

Brandon Leedy won his heat, semi, and capped his evening off by winning the Support B Main Event. Norman Graham finished second, Tim McGrath was third, and Dan Wensloff finished fourth.

Rocco Scopellite led all four laps en route to victory in the Youth First Division Main Event. Samuel Ramirez finished second, Maxwell Ruml was third, and Nicky Reimer finished fourth.

Hayley Perrault was victorious in the Youth Second Division Main Event with Dillon Ruml getting second and Michael Wells finishing in third.

Nick Varner made an auspicious debut by winning the Youth Third Division Main Event. Gino Scopellite was second, Maverick Molloy finished third, and Brian Pintear was fourth.

Although it was the second event on the calendar, the Season Opener officially began the 42nd season of speedway at the Orange County Fairgrounds where speedway debuted on Friday, June 13, 1969. The next event at Costa Mesa is the Warren Russell Cup this Saturday, May 1. Blair is the defending Warren Russell Cup with former winners Faria, Schwartz, and Charlie “The Edge” Venegas leading a field of riders seeking to dethrone the Colorado native.


Sidecar Main Event 
 66 - Gerard Jackson/Dave German 
 13 - Dan Jones/Casey Driggers 
  2 - Brian Motis/Steven Bumpass 
  1 - Joe Jones/Jimmy Olsen 

Youth Third Division Main Event 
333 - Nick Varner 
  7 - Gino Scopellite 
 34 - Maverick Molloy 
 58 - Brian Pintear 

Youth Second Division Main Event 
  0 - Hayley Perrault 
111 - Dillon Ruml 
214 - Michael Wells 

Youth First Division Main Event 
  9 - Rocco Scopellite 
 22 - Samuel Ramirez 
356 - Maxwell Ruml 
 41 - Nicky Reimer 

Support B Main Event 
151 - Brandon Leedy 
129 - Norman Graham 
186 - Tim McGrath 
169 - Dan Wensloff 

Support Last Chance
182 – Rudy Laurer
389 – Ryan Tovatt
176 – Carl Gazafy
147 – Rick Farron		(fell, remounted)

Support Main Event (restarted twice) 
181 - Austin Novratil 
244 - Joey Holt 
182 - Rudy Laurer 
259 - Michael Raines 		(fell) 
220 - Tyson Talkington 		(fell, excluded) 

First Division Heat Scoring	1	2	3	T
  2 – Josh Larsen		E	E	2	2
  3 – Gary Hicks		4	4	4	12
  6 – Shawn McConnell		3	4	3	10
  9 – Mike Faria		4	3	4	11
 11 – Bobby Schwartz		3	1	2	6
11n – John Houston		2	1	2	5
 14 – Eddie Castro		2	0	T	2
 22 – Mike Bloom		1	2	1	4
 23 – Steve Russell		1	2	1	4
 25 – Jimmy Fishback		3	3	0	6
 26 – Tyson Burmeister		2	0	3	5
30n – Devin DeFreece		0	3	0	3
 39 – Buck Blair		4	4	3	11
 40 – Tommy Hedden		3	3	4	10
 41 – John Marquez		0	2	2	4
 66 – Jason Ramirez		4	1	3	8
 98 – Doug Nicol		0	4	4	8
141 – Josh Abbott		1	M	1	2
145 – Brad Pappalardo		2	2	0	4

Race Results
 1: Ramirez, McConnell, Castro, Russell, Nicol (fell, remounted)
 2: Faria, Hedden, Burmeister, Abbott, DeFreece
 3: (restarted) Blair, Fishback, Pappalardo, Facchini, Larsen (penalty line) (engine failure)
 4: Hicks, Schwartz, Houston, Bloom, Marquez
 9: McConnell, DeFreece, Marquez, Facchini (fell, remounted), Abbott (two-minute exclusion)
10: Nicol, Faria, Pappalardo, Houston, Castro (fell, remounted)
11: Hicks, Hedden, Bloom, Ramirez (fell, remounted), Larsen (engine failure)
12: Blair, Fishback, Russell, Schwartz, Burmeister (tape penalty)
17: Hicks, McConnell, Houston, Bloom, Fishback (fell, remounted)
18: Faria, Ramirez, Marquez, Russell (tape penalty), Pappalardo
19: (restarted twice) (awarded) Nicol, Burmeister (penalty line), Larsen (fell, remounted), Abbott, Castro (tape exclusion)
20: (restarted) Hedden, Blair, Schwartz, Facchini (tape penalty), DeFreece
Semi #1: Faria, Burmeister, Blair, Ramirez, Nicol (fell, remounted)
Semi #2: Fishback, Hedden, Hicks, Schwartz, McConnell (fell, remounted)   

First Division Last Chance 
 39 - Buck Blair 
  3 - Gary Hicks 
 11 - Bobby Schwartz 
 66 - Jason Ramirez 

First Division Main Event 
  9 - Mike Faria 
 40 - Tommy Hedden 
 26 - Tyson Burmeister 
 39 - Buck Blair 
 25 - Jimmy Fishback 		(fell, remounted)
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