Fast Fridays Speedway
Gold Country Fairgrounds
1273 High Street
Speedway Challenge Series
Fast Friday's Motorcycle Speedway,
Gold Country Fairgrounds
Novratil and Mersaroli Win Main Events
By Michael Kirby (Story & Photos)
AUBURN, CALIFORNIA, May 13, 2016
YouTube Video - by Anthony Bernardi
Austin Novratil made the trip to Auburn from Huntington Beach worth his gas money. The 21 year old was still hot coming off a first place finish in the scratch main last Saturday night at the Jack Milne Cup in Costa Mesa. Novratil kept his winning way on track by taking first place in the scratch main event at Fast Fridays Motorcycle Speedway at the Gold Country Fairgrounds in Auburn this week. The two time AMA USA Youth National Champion and AMA U-21 National Champion did have to work for his victory. Auburn’s Bart Bast was not going to let Novratil just ride in and walk away with the trophy without a good race. Novratil drew lane four and right out of the chute fell into the groove inside with Bast out of lane two right on his tail. Last week’s winner Billy Janniro, out of lane one was in the running but was pushed outside by Novratil and Bast by lap two. Bryan Yarrow in lane three was also in the mix but could not get next to Novratil and Bast.
Just like last week it turned into a two man battle for the tape on the slick blue-grooved nearly dust free track. Bast tried everything he had in his bag of tricks on his home track to get by Novratil, but Novratil would have none of it. The two went at it for four laps leaving Yarrow and Janniro behind. “I’m happy; I trashed the new bike earlier, but hopped on the back up and won. We would like to come up here more often, it’s hard but definitely worth it,” Novratil said. Experienced for his age with already 14 years of speedway racing under his belt, Novratil held the inside rail keeping Bast at bay to take the win. Bast finished second, Yarrow was third and Janniro fourth.
Veteran rider Charlie Venegas proved he still has it off the line by winning the first round of the Challenge Elimination Series. A series of one lap scratch five rider races with the last place finisher eliminated after each race. The last two riders race a two lap finale. Venegas outlasted Tommy Hedden, Billy Janniro, Broc Nicol and Luke Becker in that order, with Janniro left the contest with a mechanical problem. Venegas will be joined by four more series round winners in a championship round later in the season.
One of Auburn’s Mersaroli brothers, Louie and David, has managed to find their way on top of winner’s podium for the second week in a row. Last week David Mersaroli won the handicap main event earning another 10 yards of handicap yardage. This week it was brother Louie Mersaroli getting the extra handicap yardage and standing on the winner’s podium grinning with the handicap main event trophy. These guys started riding speedway in 2011 in the youth program and have steadily progressed into Division I competitors. “I’m just trying a lot harder to hold the pole, and ride my race and do what I do,” Mersaroli said. Mersaroli, off the 10 yard line was first in his heat race and third in his semi final race to advance to the final. Luke Becker, handicapped off the 40 yard line grabbed second place and Kurtis Hamill took third.
Shawn Eldredge, was hot Friday night picking up a pair of first place finishes. Eldredge took first place in the Division II main event and also grabbed the first place ribbon in the Run What U Brung contest. Eldredge, riding off the 40 yard line, settled for third in his Division II heat race and transferred to the main. There he was able to keep ahead of second place finisher Jamison Dilkey, who was also riding in the Division I program, and Michael Achilles who picked up his second third place Division II finish in two weeks. Eldredge also won his Run What U Brung heat race and the Run What U Brung main event.
In Division III Casey Cornilsen took the trophy home. Cornilsen who took a five year break from speedway racing finished third last week in Division III upping his game this week with a first place finish in Division III. Ray Holt Jr. was second, and was John Williams was third.
In the Youth A 250cc main event Auburn’s Colton Hicks was back in winning form. Hicks faced competition on the 60 yard line against Sebastian Palmese who made the trip up from Southern California. Palmese was plagued with engine problems when these two riders met at the Gumball Rally earlier this year. Palmese again had motorcycle problems and was unable to finish the main event. Hicks picked up his first main event win of the 2016 Fast Fridays season, Anthony Dion was second, Cameron Krezman was third. Gregory Moore won the Youth B 250cc main event. For the second week in a row Charlie Trana won the Youth A 150cc main event. Gavin Geist won the Youth B 150cc main event.
Be ready for added Fast Fridays racing action when the Extreme Sidecars make the first of five appearances at the Gold Country Fairgrounds this Friday May 20. Always a crowd favorite the sidecars put on a thrilling three wheeled racing show.
Fast Fridays Results for 5-13-16 (Editor: Please note that results are not official as the promoter is responslble for those, we do attempt to be correct as we can. Some results below added by speedwaybikes.com)
Scratch Main Event
1-Austin Novratil, 2-Bart Bast, 3-Bryan Yarrow, 4-Billy Janniro
Handicap Main Event
1-Louie Mersaroli, 2-Luke Becker, 3-Kurtis Hamill, (4-6 not sure of order, Austin Novratil (fell), Daniel Faria (?), Russell Green (fell))
1-Gage Geist, 2-Bart Bast, 3-Bob Hicks, 4- Ryan Bast, 5-Eddie Marsalla, 6-Bryan Yarrow
Division II Main Event
1-Shawn Eldredge, 2-Jamison Dilkey, 3-Mike Achilles, 4-Eddie Marsalla, 5-Nick Dion, 6-Charlie Haines
Division II Consolation
1-Lawrence McNutt, 2-John Peters, 3-William McCloskey, 4-Brian Leventon
Division III Main Event
1-Casey Cornilsen, 2-Ray Holt Jr., 3-John Williams, 4-LC Veale, 5-Harlan Bast, 6-Hunter Morris
Division III Consolation
1-Cameron Beck, 2-Tim Dion, 3-Peter Pecorilla, John Gauthreaux (ns)
Youth A 250cc Main Event
1-Colton Hicks, 2-Anthony Dion, 3-Cameron Krezman, 4-Landon Norton, 5-Dylan Wagner, 6-Sebastian Palmese
Youth B 250cc Main Event
1-Gregory Moore 2-Sammy Tetrault, 3-Aidan McNutt, 4-Rich VanderMeeden, 5-Logan Hedden, 6-Blu VanderBroeder
Youth A 150cc Main Event
1-Charlie Trana, 2-Enzo Sorani, 3-Landon Collins
Youth B 150cc Main Event
1-Gavin Geist, 2-Chase Kangas, 3-Colton Nelson, 4-Sammy Waddill (ret)
Run What U Brung
1-Russell Green, 2-Louie Mersaroli, 3-Robert Curry
Challenge Elimination (Round 1)
1-Charlie Venegas, 2-Tommy Hedden, 3-Billy Janniro, 4-Broc Nicol, 5-Luke Becker
Photos By Michael Kirby