2007 Firecracker Derby
July 4, 2007 - Victorville
By: Ryan Evans
Buck Blair went undefeated and won the Firecracker Derby in dramatic style in front of a capacity crowd at Wheel2Wheel Raceway in Victorville.
Blair's perfect score entitled him to first choice in the main and he selected gate two. "Fast" Eddie Castro took gate four, Dale Facchini picked gate one, which left gate three to Michael Hull.
When the tapes went up no rider had a clear lead entering turn one, but Blair and Castro tangled which left Castro on the ground while Blair slowed. The referee allowed the race to continue and it was Facchini leading Hull on the back straight. Blair was left with a lot of ground to make up, but he was on Hull's back tire at the end of lap two. Blair went to the outside on the third lap and went around Hull for second and set his sights on Facchini. Blair gained a lot of the final time through turn one and was handlebar-to-handlebar with Facchini as they entered turn three. The riders exited the final corner even, but the banking and the cushion gave Blair enough momentum to surge ahead and win by half of a wheel with both riders receiving a rousing ovation from the appreciative crowd. Hull finished third and Castro was fourth.
The first of three rounds of heats began with Blair defeating Castro for his first win. Hull held off Jon Stasiefski in the next heat. Dale Facchini defeated Shawn McConnell in the last race of round one.
Round two started with Hull and McConnell in a great four-lap battle with McConnell just edging Hull at the line for the win. Blair defeated Facchini for his second straight win. Castro beat Stasiefski for his first victory to end the second round.
The final round began with Facchini beating Bobby Schwartz for his second win. Blair remained perfect with a win over Hull in race 24. Castro beat McConnell in the final heat race.
Blair handily won the first semi and Hull forced his way past McConnell to snatch the other transfer to the main. Castro won the second semi with Facchini taking the other transfer to the main. McConnell was an easy winner in the B Main.
Kenny Hansen got the best start in the Second Division Main Event and was smooth and steady the entire distance to get the victory. Allen Doss was second, Bryan Buffington finished third, Steve Dziadus was fourth, and Rick Fritch finished fifth.
Chad Epling, making his debut, led the Third Division Main, but veteran rider Mike Boyle took over the lead and never looked back en route to victory. Mike Nutting finished second and Epling was third.
The first attempt to complete the Youth main ended when Joey Holt fell. On the restart, Russell Green got by Richard Crocker for the lead and cruised to the win. Holt finished second and Crocker was third.
Josh Mazariegos was the winner in the Pee Wee Main Event with Erika Lyons finishing second and Carl Wood finishing third.
Joe Jones and Buck Blair dominated the Sidecar Main event and were first to the checkered flag. Kirk Williams and Jimmy Olsen were second and Brian Motis and George Reeves were third.
The next speedway event at Wheel2Wheel Raceway is Saturday, July 21 for Chamber of Commerce Night and the Schlaman's Pit Crew Challenge. The Pit Crew Challenge will have four riders who will race for two laps, conduct a pit stop on the infield that includes flipping the edge of the rear tire, then complete the final two laps of the race.
Sidecar Main Event
15 - Joe Jones/Buck Blair
12 - Kirk Williams/Jimmy Olsen
4 - Brian Motis/George Reeves
Pee Wee Main Event
487 - Josh Mazariegos
77 - Erika Lyons
8 - Carl Wood Youth Main Event (restarted)
18 - Russell Green 40
4 - Joey Holt 40 (penalty line)
91 - Richard Crocker 0
Third Division Main Event
198 - Mike Boyle 20
218 - Mike Nutting 20
190 - Chad Epling 0
Second Division Scoring 1 2 T
77 - Bryan Buffington 3 3 6
171 - Kenny Hansen 2 3 5
212 - Steve Dziadus 1 1 2
232 - Allen Doss 2 1 3
288 - Rick Fritch 0 2 2
13: Buffington, Hansen, Dziadus
22: Buffington, Doss, Dziadus, Fritch
29: Hansen, Fritch, Doss (fell, remounted)
Second Division Main Event
171 - Kenny Hansen 0
232 - Allen Doss 0
77 - Bryan Buffington 0
212 - Steve Dziadus 20
288 - Rick Fritch 20
First Division Scoring 1 2 3 T
6 - Shawn McConnell 2 3 2 7
11 - Bobby Schwartz 1 1 2 4
14 - Eddie Castro 2 3 3 8
19 - Dale Facchini 3 2 3 8
30 - Tim Gomez R 1 1 2
32 - Billy Lyons 1 1 1 3
39 - Buck Blair 3 3 3 9
110 - Jon Stasiefski 2 2 1 5
241 - John Marquez 1 0 0 1
320 - Michael Hull 3 2 2 7
10: Blair, Castro, Marquez
11: Hull, Stasiefski, Schwartz, Gomez (retired)
12: Facchini, McConnell, Lyons
17: McConnell, Hull, Schwartz
18: Blair, Facchini, Gomez, Marquez
19: Castro, Stasiefski, Lyons
23: Facchini, Schwartz, Stasiefski
24: (restarted) Blair, Hull, Lyons (penalty line)
25: Castro, McConnell, Gomez, Marquez
Semi #1: Blair, Hull, McConnell, Lyons
Semi #2: Castro, Facchini, Stasiefski, Schwartz
First Division B Main
6 - Shawn McConnell
110 - Jon Stasiefski
32 - Billy Lyons
11 - Bobby Schwartz
First Division Main Event
39 - Buck Blair
19 - Dale Facchini
320 - Michael Hull
14 - Eddie Castro (fell, remounted)