Costa Mesa Speedway
Orange County Fairgrounds
Costa Mesa, California
April 10, 2010 - Costa Mesa
By: Ryan Evans
YouTube Link to Main Event
Jimmy “The Little Animal” Fishback took home the top honors with a main event victory at Costa Mesa’s annual Spring Classic which was dedicated to the memory of legendary former National Champion Kelly Moran.
The first time the tapes went up in the main event former National Champion Charlie “The Edge” Venegas jumped into the lead but Gary Hicks lifted entering turn one and the two riders clashed. Hicks went down immediately, but Venegas was sent straight and ended up against the wall. He was down for several minutes but was able to get up and make the restart. Hicks was deemed the cause of the stoppage and would restart from the penalty line.
When the riders staged again Venegas got into the tapes and was sent to the penalty line alongside Hicks. The third attempt saw Fishback jump into the lead with Faria in pursuit. Faria’s aspirations for the lead were superseded by his position being threatened. Schwartz went by Faria for second and Hicks eventually passed him for third. The shuffling of positions behind Fishback gave him some breathing room at the front. Fishback was first to the checkered flag, Schwartz finished second, Hicks was third, Faria finished fourth, and Venegas was fifth.
The heats began with Northern California’s Devin DeFreece leading for two laps before Buck Blair passed him on the outside for the lead and the win. In the second heat Hicks defeated Neil Facchini and Tommy Hedden for his first victory. Schwartz started his evening off with a win ahead of Jason Ramirez. Faria was leading heat four before Fishback went up the inside on lap three to take the lead and went on to victory.
Round two started with McConnell leading Fishback but Ramirez made an excellent outside pass for second as they entered turn one the third time, but a crash at the back brought out the red flag. McConnell was awarded the victory and since Fishback was second at the end of the last complete lap, he was awarded second.
Hicks defeated Blair in the next heat for his second straight victory, but the story may have been Doug “The Destroyer” Nicol who was challenging both before falling on the third lap. Schwartz was leading event 11 with Hedden threatening on the outside before a chain derailed the leader and handed the lead and victory to Hedden ahead of Steve Russell. Venegas beat Faria for his first win to complete the second round.
Venegas scored his second straight win to open the final round. Fishback earned his second win while also handing Hicks his first defeat. Schwartz beat Blair and a very game Ramirez for his second win. The final heat had Hedden beating Faria and Nicol after a great three-rider battle throughout the whole race with Faria on the inside, Nicol on the outside, and Hedden deftly switching lines to protect his lead.
Venegas launched into the lead from gate four in the first semi and led Fishback to the finish and into the main event. Faria and Hicks finished one-two in the second semi to transfer to the main as well. Schwartz made a great start in the Last Chance to claim victory and the final spot in the main event.
Fourth-generation racer Kyle Hicks was led the Support Main Event for three laps, but went down entering turn one the final time and gift-wrapped the lead and victory to a thankful Tyson Talkington. Joey Holt finished second, Rick Farron was third, Michael Raines finished fourth, and Kyle Hicks was credited with fifth.
The first attempt to run the Support B Main Event ended unceremoniously in turn two when a collision caused Gene Stone’s bike to launch into the wall. Stone was unhurt, but his machine was much shorter than when the race started. Aimiris Santana led the restart from start to finish and took the win ahead of Moore.
Rocco Scopellite led all four laps to win the Youth First Division Main Event. Maxwell Ruml finished second and Samuel Ramirez was third.
Hayley Perrault led the Youth Second Division Main Event for a lap before River McDougall took over the lead. McDougall never looked back from there and went on to victory. Perrault was second, Major Davis finished third, and Dillon Ruml was fourth.
Michael Wells put together four smooth laps for an impressive triumph in the Youth Third Division Main Event. Gino Scopellite finished second, Brian Pintear was third, and Maverick Molloy finished fourth.
Joe Jones and Jimmy Olsen showed why they’re the defending National Sidecar Champions by romping to victory in the Sidecar Main Event. Gerard Jackson and Dave German were second, Scott Driggers and Casey Driggers finished third, and Brian Motis and Crystal Laurie were fourth.
The evening was dedicated to the memory of former National Champion Kelly Moran who passed away Easter Sunday. There were pictures and mementos from the legendary rider’s career on display for the fans in front of the main grandstand.
A memorial service was held at the track in the afternoon, a fitting place for a rider who grew up racing and thrilling fans at the world famous race track. Many speedway dignitaries attended the service to remember the dynamic racer. Speakers included two-time World Champion Bruce Penhall, four-time World Champion Barry Briggs, Bobby Schwartz, Dennis Sigalos, John Cook, Ron Preston, and Kelly’s longtime sponsor Pete Rovazzini. Each speaker shared how Moran had touched their lives and also some funny stories. In addition, messages sent from nine-time World Champion Ivan Mauger and current World Champion Jason Crump were read aloud.
The most moving moment of the memorial was when the aforementioned group was joined by Lance King, Danny Becker, Steve Gresham, and Steve Lucero. The group gathered near the starting line to spread some of Moran’s ashes in a moment that certainly brought tears to the eyes of many of those in attendance. The group proceeded to the back straight and spread more ashes there as well.
Sidecar Main Event
1 – Joe Jones/Jimmy Olsen
66 – Gerard Jackson/Dave German
13 – Scott Driggers/Casey Driggers
2 – Brian Motis/Crystal Laurie
Youth Third Division Main Event
214 – Michael Wells
7 – Gino Scopellite
58 – Brian Pintear
34 – Maverick Molloy
Youth Second Division Main Event
5 – River McDougall
0 – Hayley Perrault
999 – Major Davis
111 – Dillon Ruml (engine failure)
Youth First Division Main Event
9 – Rocco Scopellite
356 – Maxwell Ruml
22 – Samuel Ramirez
Support B Consolation
151 – Brandon Leedy
122 – Kevin Johnson
169 – Dan Wensloff
175 – Jake Myers
Support B Consolation
333 – Mike Salyer
317 – Kenny Montague
211 – Steve Brown (fell)
282 – Todd Silicato (fell)
Support B Main Event (restarted)
128 – Aimiris Santana
161 – Michael Moore (penalty line)
131 – Rod Requejo (two-minute exclusion)
231 – Gene Stone (non starter – restart)
252 – Jeff Remington
266 – Jonni Jade
186 – Tim McGrath
198 – Mike Boyle
Support Last Chance (restarted)
259 – Michael Raines
105 – Daniel Faria (penalty line)
150 – Damon Barry (retired)
177 – Steve Bowen (non starter)
Support Main Event
220 – Tyson Talkington
244 – Joey Holt
147 – Rick Farron
259 – Michael Raines
103 – Kyle Hicks (fell)
First Division Scoring 1 2 3 T
3 – Gary Hicks 4 4 3 11
6 – Shawn McConnell 0 4 3 7
9 – Mike Faria 3 3 3 9
11 – Bobby Schwartz 4 E 4 8
22 – Mike Bloom 2 1 2 5
23 – Steve Russell 2 3 2 7
25 – Jimmy Fishback 4 3 4 11
30n – Devin DeFreece 3 1 1 5
39 – Buck Blair 4 3 3 10
40 – Tommy Hedden 2 4 4 10
41 – John Marquez 0 F 0 0
43 – Charlie Venegas F 4 4 8
66 – Jason Ramirez 3 2 2 7
86 – Neil Facchini 3 2 1 6
98 – Doug Nicol T 0 2 2
120 – Doug Greyson 1 0 1 2
132 – Justin Hassan 1 2 0 3
145 – Brad Pappalardo 1 2 1 4
178 – Eloy Medellin 1 1 0 2
182 – Rudy Laurer 2 1 0 3
1: Blair, DeFreece, Bloom, Hassan, McConnell (fell, remounted)
2: Hicks, Facchini, Pappalardo, Marquez
3: Schwartz, Ramirez, Laurer, Greyson, Venegas (fell)
4: Fishback, Faria, Russell, Medellin, Nicol (tape exclusion)
9: (awarded) McConnell, Fishback, Ramirez, Medellin, Marquez (fell)
10: Hicks, Blair, Ramirez, Laurer, Nicol (fell, remounted)
11: Hedden, Russell, Pappalardo, Bloom, Schwartz (engine failure)
12: Venegas, Faria, Facchini, DeFreece, Greyson (tape penalty)
17: Venegas, McConnell, Bloom, Greyson, Laurer
18: Fishback, Hicks, Russell, Facchini, Medellin
19: Schwartz, Blair, Ramirez, DeFreece, Hassan
20: Hedden, Faria, Nicol, Pappalardo, Marquez
Semi #1: Venegas, Fishback, Blair, Schwartz, Ramirez
Semi #2: Faria, Hicks, McConnell, Hedden, Russell
First Division Last Chance
11 – Bobby Schwartz
39 – Buck Blair
6 – Shawn McConnell
40 – Tommy Hedden
First Division Main Event (restarted)
25 – Jimmy Fishback
11 – Bobby Schwartz
3 – Gary Hicks (penalty line)
9 – Mike Faria
43 – Charlie Venegas (tape penalty)