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2003 Fast Fridays Speedway
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Fast Fridays Speedway
Gold Country Fairgrounds
Auburn, California

98 ROCK'S Lap Main Event
May 30, 2003 - Fast Fridays, Auburn
By Gary Roberts

Another hot night in Auburn. A reasonably good crowd, a well prepared consistent track, and some great races. The main event this week was the 25 lap handicap. For the first time this season, as far as I know, every competitor survived the evening, unhurt.

Scratch Main
1. Bobby Hedden
2. Bart Bast
3. Tommy Hedden
4. Bryan Yarrow
Undisputed top man of the night was Bobby Hedden. Bart Bast got the better of him in the scratch semi-final, but Bobby had a convincing win, from the tapes in the main. Bryan Yarrow, fresh back from his Under 21 Poole quarter final event made a great gate from the outside position, to take second into turn one, but he lost first to Bart, then to Tommy Hedden.

Scratch Consolation
1. Chad Felicio
2. Chris Kerr
3. Bart Bardecki
4. Rick Shafer
Two abortive attempts to get this race underway both ended with Chad Felicio on the ground. But Chad made no mistake on the third attempt. It is good to see Rick Shafer back after a season of retirement, running in the top 8 scratch competitors..

Handicap Main
1. Bobby Hedden
2. Bart Bast
3. Chris Kerr
4. Mark Carrillo
5. Ivan Sevart
6. Billy Hiles
Also in the race were Richard Christian, Tom Adams, Greg Hooten, Tommy Hedden.
Personally, I see the 25 lap race as a bit of a misfit at a Speedway event. I put it in the same category as flying motocross riders, sidecars, backwards races, pee-wees and other spectacles designed to amuse the non-purists. But I must not let my bias overcome the facts. Putting 25 race laps on a Speedway engine which has a design requirements specification of four laps is to say the least, unkind. This, one would imagine, would be an opportunity to bring out an old discarded engine, but not the case. Everyone used their regular machinery.

On to the race itself: First time out, Ivan Sevart brought down much of the field of 10 in the first turn. Back for a complete restart the race ran 2 laps before Billy Hiles ran in the back of Richard Christian, and high sided. The race started again from the original start positions, but the race length was cut to 23 laps. The third attempt ran fine, with Ivan Sevart taking the lead and Bobby Hedden carving his way through the pack to take over. While Bobby extended a good lead Bart Bast worked through to second place, with Chris Kerr in third. Over the last couple of laps the gap between Hedden and Bast closed right up, but Bobby Hedden was the winner. Only Chris Kerr and 16 year old Mark Carrillo avoided getting lapped. Sevart and Hiles were one lap down. The remaining four competitors had at one time stopped, so the logistics of counting laps was beyond my skills. Overall, a much better race than I expected. Congratulations to all 6 finishers, I bet they are sore today..

Division 2 Main
1. Greg Searle
2. Bill Warnock
3. Devon Defreece
4. Randy Martin
5. Dean Blankenbiller
6. Shawn Eldridge
Not looking the least like a division 3 rider, Greg Searle started his Auburn Speedway career on 2003 opening night by winning the Division 3 main. Four weeks into the season and he got a division 2 ride and promptly qualified for and won the Division 2 main. An ex-desert rider he is fast and looks steadier each week.

Division 2 Consolation
1. Mark Thomas
2. David Fonts
3. Ron Woodsford
4. Harlan Bast
5. Glenn Scott
Doug Mignano also qualified for the race, but was a non-starter.

Division 3 Main
1. Guy Jessop
2. Dean Nakatsu
3. Robert Christian
4. John Deatherage
5. Danny Poli
6. Les Veale
7. Rich Mignano
8. Kerr Kerrigan

Division 3 Consolation
1. Bruce Bast
2. Lee Sharp
3. Greg Chacon
4. Clark Caravella
5. Christian Sherfy
6. Michelle Searle
7. Steve Rowett
8. Matt Pangburn

Youths Division 1
1. Alex Marcucci
2. Danny Easley
3. JT Mabry
4. TJ Fowler
5. Paul Johnson
Alex Marcucci had a solid win over Danny Easley, with JT Mabry and TJ Fowler close behind. On opening night his father, veteran racer Rich Marcucci had a first race, first bend fall, collecting a broken femar. I had a chance to talk to him after the races last night. In addition to being unable to work for 6 months, Rich told me that as a result of his fear of doing himself further damage in the future, he will be looking at a career change, from doing general contractor work, involving working from tops of ladders and roof work, to ground based finishing-type construction work. After an 18 year Speedway career with no serious injuries he has decided to retire from the sport, but when physically fit to do so, will assist Alex in the pits. I admire his dedication to the sport, after such an injury.

Youths Division 2
1. Jay Ricketts
2. Mitch Johnson
3. Ricky Felicio
4. Ronnie Woodsford
5. Tom Fuhrman
Congratulations for the second consecutive week to Jay Ricketts for winning the Youth Division 2 main.

Youths Division 3
1. Dillon Peterson
2. Cody Ciciarelli
3. Tori Hubbert
4. Bryce Olney
5. Mike Bray

I will be unable to report on Fast Fridays events for the next 3 weeks. If someone else could post the results, I would be most grateful!

Gary Roberts - gary_rob@ix.netcom.com

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