Fast Fridays Speedway
Gold Country Fairgrounds
Fast Friday's Motorcycle Speedway
Gold Country Fairgrounds
Ruml wins U-21 Championship
By Michael Kirby (Story & Photos)
AUBURN, CALIFORNIA, August 16, 2013
Congratulations to Fast Fridays Motorcycle Speedway owner David Joiner and his excellent staff for presenting one of the most exciting nights of speedway motorcycle racing so far this season. There were nearly 50 races in seven different divisions staged during the evening. Included with a regular night of racing action, Fast Fridays hosted the 2013 AMA Under 21 National Speedway Championship. Riders under 21 years of age from around the state competed for the championship and a qualifying spot on the U-21 world team that will compete overseas in 2014.
Ten of the best riders in this age group converged on the Gold Country Fairgrounds track to ride against the best in their age group. All are the future of speedway racing in America and currently ride Division I and II. Many will go on to have careers in speedway racing. Up from Southern California it was Max Ruml that sifted his way through the four heats, two semi final heats, and the final in a long night of racing to come out on top. After three restarts in the final, the first two the result of crashes on turn one involving Austin Novratil, Ruml was able to run out in front for the entire race and win the championship. "I knew I just had to make three good starts," Ruml said after climbing of his bike. "There was a lot of banging bars, I'm just glad I made it through all right."
Ruml went into the final just one point off perfect in a loss to Novratil in a heat race earlier in the evening. Novratil worked his way into the final with a perfect score; Auburn's Bryce Starks was in the final with 13 points two points off perfect. Rounding out the four riders in the field was Auburn's David Mersaroli with six points. Starks, a past two time winner of the event, came in second and was second in overall points for the evening. Mersaroli was third, and Novratil again suffered bad luck going down early in the race and finishing fourth in the final but third overall in the U-21 points standing for the night. "These guys are putting it all on the line, they ended up having a few crashes but they all want to win and that's what you want to see out here," said Billy Janniro, former national speedway champion. "You want to see that positive intensity, we have about five or six guys up here just about ready to come out of their shells."
The regular program was also jammed packed with action. Not to repeat last week's loss to Bart Bast in the Division I scratch main event, Billy Janniro out of lane four, got out in front of Bast on the inside, and held on for a convincing win. Janniro led all the way as Bast trailed. Bast finished second, Bryan Yarrow was third and Charlie Venegas was fourth. "It was good last week. Bart's been battling and has been a great competitor this year, he's stepped his game up a bunch and we're having some great races," said Janniro.
In the Division I handicap main event it was the Bast family going head to head. Cousins Ryan and Bart Bast chased each other around the track for six laps before Bart Bast finally was able to make a move to pass and take the win. Ryan Bast was second and Bryan Yarrow was third. Auburn's Chris Popanz, a consistent top three finisher in Division II won the Division II main event for the second time this season. Lawrence McNutt picked up a first place finish in the Division III main event after having two second place and one third place finishes so far this season.
Auburn's Kyle Cunningham won the Youth 150cc main event followed by Gregory Moore in second and Aidan McNutt in third. Chase Guerrero picked up his first win of the season in the Youth 250cc main event. Sheldon Heidridk won the Run What U Brung main event.
Results for Fast Fridays 8-16-13
Under 21 Championship Results
Max Ruml 3 3 2 3 3 3-17
Austin Novratil 3 3 3 3 3 0-15
Bryce Starks 2 3 3 3 2 2 -15
Tyler Warren 2 2 3 1-8
PJ Byrne 1 2 2 2 -7
David Mersaroli 1 1 0 2 2 1-7
Jamison Dilkey 2 2 1 1 0-6
Thomas Reich 0 1 2 2 1 -6
Jason Ramirez 3 0 1 0-4
Louie Mersaroli 1 1 1 1-4
Division I Scratch Main Event
1-Billy Janniro, 2-Bart Bast, 3-Bryan Yarrow, 4-Charlie Venegas
Division I Handicap Main Event
1-Bart Bast, 2-Ryan Bast, 3-Bryan Yarrow
Division II Main Event
1-Chris Popanz, 2-Kyle Porteous, 3-David Mersaroli
Division III Main Event
1-Lawrence McNutt, 2-Greg Lovlien, 3-Harlan Bast
Youth 250cc Main Event
Youth 150cc Main Event
1-Kyle Cunningham, 2-Gregory Moore, 3-Aidan McNutt
Run What U Brung
Photos By Michael Kirby
||Billy Janniro wheelies across the finish line on his victory lap after beating Bart Bast in the Division I scratch main event Friday night.
||Auburn's Bryce Starks (left) and Jason Ramirez (right) race in a heat race during the Under 21 2013 AMA National Speedway Championship at Fast Fridays Friday. Starks finished second in the championship.
||Max Ruml on the start line of the U-21 championship final race. Ruml won the race and the championship.
||Auburn's Chris Popanz gets off to a great start in the Division II main event. Popanz (center) won the event and picked up his second main event win for the season.