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Fast Fridays Speedway

Gold Country Fairgrounds
1273 High Street
Auburn, California

AMA Youth Speedway National Championship
Fast Friday's Motorcycle Speedway, Gold Country Fairgrounds
Palmese and Martin are Youth Champions
By Michael Kirby (Story & Photos)

Starting early and needing 45 minutes of extra time to get in all in, Fast Friday Motorcycle Speedway in Auburn, worked in 40 AMA National Youth Championship races and 22 adult division races in a fantastic, exciting night of speedway racing at the Gold Country Fairgrounds. When the dust finally settled two AMA Youth National Speedway Champions were awarded their trophies, and Bart Bast and Dalton Leedy took top honors in the division one programs.

In the AMA 250cc Youth National Speedway Championship program, defending champion Colton Hicks 14, knew he had his hands full with Southern California’s Sebastian Palmese 13, who finished second last year losing to Hicks in the final. The championship would be decided by overall points for the evening, scoring 3 points for a win, 2 points for a second place finish and one point for a third place finish and no points for fourth place in 20 heat races.

The riders all raced against each other once during the evening with Hicks and Palmese meeting in heat 17 tied with 12 points each. Also, in this heat making things even more interesting was Michael Wells who was no easy mark, coming into this important heat with 11 points and Dylan Wagner who brought seven points to the hot heat.

This race boiled down to the championship, and the boys knew it and sure made it exciting. Out of the gate Hicks in lane two and Palmese in lane one hooked up and both riders went down in turn one. A restart put both riders right back in the same starting blocks only this time Hicks went down in turn one and was excluded, handing Palmese the championship with a win on the restart. On the third start of this race Palmese still had to deal with Wells, no easy task. Off the line though Palmese put his experience to work relaxing a little without Hicks in the race and cruised to the win and championship podium. “My first start (in heat 17) was really, really bad, but after Colton (Hicks) and I got in that little crash I went to a different spot and gated well the next two starts, I feel very happy,” Palmese said. After getting off his bike near the exit gate Palmese’s crew and pit personnel gathered to give him the champions toss in the air. Palmese finished the night with a perfect score winning all his races. Palmese no stranger to championship speedway racing was also the AMA 150cc Youth National Speedway Champion in 2013 and 2014. Wells finished second with 13 points just two points off perfect and Hicks finished third with 12 points.

In the AMA 150cc Youth National Speedway Championship, 11 year old Sterling Martin came into the night defending his current national championship. Martin who along with his twin brother Alex Martin held the one-two 150cc championship spots in 2015 definitely held the edge. Holding onto his championship Sterling Martin scored perfectly in all of his races with 15 points. “I came into this I didn’t know if I was going to win it or not, but I got lucky on my starts,” Martin said. “It feels awesome.” Besides his brother Alex, Martin needed to be concerned with Slater Lightcap who finished third last year. Early in the evening the two met in heat seven with Martin beating Lightcap. It was Lightcap’s only loss for the entire evening and he finished second in the championship with 14 points. Enzo Sorani took third place finishing with 12 points dropping three points for second place finishes to both Martins and Lightcap.

It was a great night of youth racing with all the riders giving their all and doing a great job giving American speedway a glimpse of our future champions to come.

The adult divisions were slightly overshadowed by the youth championships but were highly competitive. Auburn’s longtime veteran rider Bart Bast was the fastest man of the night winning the scratch main event. Bast wasted little time putting together a winning night with victories in his heat race and his semi final race to get into the main. He faced young Russell Green who won his heat race but lost to Bast in their semi, to get into the scratch. Also in the main were Austin Novratil and Charlie Venegas. Bast was in lane one, Green sat in lane two, Venegas was in three and Novratil way out in four. Venegas had a little trouble with the start leaving to early and was excluded by referee Steve Lucero. On the restart Bast grabbed the inside on turn one and never looked back. Novratil tried to catch Bast but without any luck. Maybe Novratil was waiting for a bobble or wide swing that never came as the consistent Bast just kept increasing his lead with each lap to the checkered flag. Novratil was second, Green third.

Dalton Leedy up from Southern California wrapped up the handicap main event for the second time this season. Kurtis Hamill was second and Austin Novratil was third. Shawn Eldredge took the Division II main event, his second of the season. Eddie Marsalla was second, Michael Achilles was third. Casey Cormilsen won the Division III main event for the second week in a row. Cameron Beck was second and Pauly Good third.

Fast Fridays Results for 7-29-16

Scratch Main Event
1-Bart Bast, 2-Austin Novratil, 3-Russell Green

Handicap Main Event
1-Dalton Leedy, 2-Kurtis Hamill, 3-Austin Novratil

Division II Main Event
1-Shawn Eldredge, 2-Eddie Marsalla, 3-Michael Achilles

Division III Main Event
1-Casey Cornilsen, 2-Cameron Beck, 3-Pauly Good

2016 AMA 250cc Youth National Speedway Championship Results
1-Sebastian Palmese 3 3 3 3 3-15
2-Michael Wells 3 2 3 3 2-13
3-Colton Hicks 3 3 3 3 0-12 (run-off)
4-Jake Isaac 1 3 2 3 3-12 (run-off)
5-Cameron Krezman 2 3 1 2 3-11
6-Kyle Cunningham 3 2 2 2 0-9
7-Dylan Wagner 1 2 2 2 1-8
8-Anthony Dion 0 1 3 0 3-7
9-Landon Norton-2 0 2 1 2-7
10-Sara Cords- 1 2 0 1 2-6
11-Gregory Moore- 2 1 1 2 0-6
12-Aidan McNutt-2 1 1 1 1-6
13-Logan Hedden-1 1 1 1 1-5
14-Sammy Tetrault-0 0 0 0 2-2
15-Blu VanderBroeder-0 0 0-0

2016 AMA 150cc Youth National Speedway Championship Results
1-Sterling Martin 3 3 3 3 3-15
2-Slater Lightcap 3 2 3 3 3-14
3-Enzo Sorani 2 3 2 2 3-12
4-Alex Martin 3 3 0 3 2-11
5-Sammy Waddill 0 2 3 2 2-9
6-Luke Whitcomb 1 0 3 2 3-9
7-Gavin Geist 2 0 2 3 1-8
8-Travis Horn 1 2 2 1 2-8
9-Charlie Trana 3 2 0 1 1-7
10 Keelan Venegas 2 1 1 0 2-6
11 Rachel Schnakenberg 2 0 0 1 1-4
12 Andrew Russell 1 0 1 2 0-4
13 Timmy Dion 0 3 0 0-3

Photos By Michael Kirby

Fast Fridays Sebastian Palmese won the 2016 AMA 250cc Youth National Speedway Championship. The win adds to a long list of speedway racing accomplishments in his career so far for the 13 year old.
Fast Fridays Sterling Martin successfully defended his current youth national championship winning the 2016 AMA 150cc Youth National Speedway Championship Friday night in Auburn.
Fast Fridays Bart Bast (near) and Austin Novratil (far) in a heat race. Bast won the scratch main event and Novratil was second.
Fast Fridays Colton Hicks (left) and Sebastian Palmese (right) start in the critical heat 17 which decided the championship.
Fast Fridays Sebastian Palmese (center) won the AMA 250cc Youth National Speedway Championship Friday night in Auburn. With Palmese on the winner’s podium is second place finisher Michael Wells (left) and Colton Hicks, third place finisher (right). Also pictured is trophy presenter Phyliss Kohlman (far left).
Fast Fridays AMA 150cc Youth National Speedway Champions Sterling Martin first place, (center), Slater Lightcap second place (left) and Enzo Sorani third place (right) on the winner’s podium at Fast Fridays.
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