Fast Fridays Speedway
Gold Country Fairgrounds
2010 AMA/USA Speedway National Championship
Fast Friday’s Motorcycle Speedway
By Michael Kirby (Story & Photos)
AUBURN, CALIFORNIA, October 1, 2010
The 2010 AMA/USA Speedway National Championship was Billy “The Kid” Janniro’s to lose. Going into the final round of the national championship series Friday night at Fast Friday’s Motorcycle Speedway in Auburn, the savvy speedway rider was the man to beat, as he has been all season long. Janniro had another perfect night with 15 points in the qualifying round, winning all his heat races, and only a serious miss-step could have derailed his efforts to earn another USA National Championship. Seeded in the A main event as the nights top points man, Janniro claimed his second USA/AMA National Speedway Championship, repeating his performance in 2008. On a championship roll this year, Janniro would not be denied this major racing accomplishment. The now two-time national speedway champion is on a winning championship roll and was recently crowned the 2010 SRA National Champion last month in Costa Mesa, Ca. and 2010 California State Champion at the City of Industry Speedway. Janniro has three times been runner up in the USA/AMA National Speedway Championship, last year losing to world champion speedway rider and eight time U.S. National Champion Greg Hancock, and also in 2001 and 2002.
Janniro entered the night with 20 series points from round one a point ahead of Charlie Venegas who sitting in second place and threatening bringing 19 points from the first round of the National Championship Series on July 23 in Auburn. Close behind Venegas were local favorite riders Bart Bast and Tommy Hedden, Bast with 14 and Hedden with 12 series points. Southern California riders Eddie Castro brought his 10 points and the veteran and past U.S. National Champion Bobby Schwartz rolled into Auburn with 7 series points.
The top 14 series point riders from round one were seeded in the qualifying round of 20 heat races with two additional riders who earned a place through a four heat elimination round. When the dust settled and the championship main final events began, it was Janniro who again proved he was the best speedway rider in America.
In the A Final was Janniro who came in with a perfect 15 qualifying points from five heat race wins, and Venegas, Bast, and Yarrow each had 13. Janniro, with the most points for the night chose lane one, Venegas grabbed lane two, Yarrow took three and Bast was in the outside lane 4. From the second the tapes went up nothing was going to stop Janniro, and with lighting quick reflexes and perfect timing he got the best gate, took the lead inside on turn one, and never let off, riding a flawless perfectly executed race. Outside of an occasional glance back to check where everyone was, Janniro cruised to a four lap national championship victory. “This time I was real focused and it worked, and I came out on top,” said a very happy Janniro after the race. “This is my second time being national champion, it feels good- the first one wasn’t a fluke,” he said. Finishing in the order they hit turn one without a position change during the race, Janniro’s A Final win gave the new national champion 41 total series points, Venegas with a second place A final finish had 37 total points, Yarrow’s third place A Final finish earned him 27 points for his nights inspired effort, and Bast finishing fourth in the A Final ended the series with 28 total points.
The B Final was won by Auburn’s Tommy Hedden, the C Final was won by Eddie Castro, and the D Final was won by Brad Pappalardo.
When the racing was over Janniro graciously autographed shirts and memorabilia in the track infield for fans, posed for photos with whoever asked until there was nothing more to sign and all the pictures were taken. He then took his well deserved center place on the podium, trophy at his feet, and proudly held high the number one plate he worked so hard all season to win.
Results-Championship Series Points Final Round 10-1-10
1-Billy Janniro, 2-Charlie Venegas, 3-Bryan Yarrow, Bart Bast
1-Tommy Hedden, 2-Bobby Schwartz, 3-Alex Marcucci, 4-Bryce Starks
1-Eddie Castro, 2-Russell Green, 3-Kelly Kerrigan, 4-JJ Martynse
1-Brad Pappalardo, 2-Thomas Riech, 3-Devin Defreece, 4-Jim Lewis
2010 USA/AMA Championship Series Points
Billy Janniro 20/20/1 41
Charlie Venegas 19/18 37
Bart Bast 14/14 28
Bryan Yarrow 11/16 27
Tommy Hedden 12/12 24
Eddie Castro 10/8 18
Bobby Schwartz 7/11 18
Scott Brant 16/dnr 16
Alex Marcucci 2/10 12
Kelly Kerrigan 5/6 11
Bryce Starks dnr/9 9
Tyson Burmeister 9/dnr 9
Jimmy Fishback 8/dnr 8
Brad Pappalardo 4/4 8
Russell Green dnr/8 8
JJ Martynse 1/5 6
Greg Hooten 6/dnr 6
Danny Faria 3/dnr 3
Thomas Reich dnr/3 3
Devin Defreece dnr/2 2
Heat Race Results Round 2
Billy Janniro 3 3 3 3 3 (15) (Received 1 bonus championship pt. for highest heat race pts.)
Charlie Venegas 2 3 2 3 3 (13)
Bart Bast 3 2 3 3 2 (13)
Bryan Yarrow 3 2 3 2 3 (13)
Bobby Schwartz 3 3 1 3 1 (11)
Tommy Hedden 2 3 2 3 0 (10)
Russell Green 2 1 2 2 1 (8)
Alex Marcucci 1 2 1 2 1 (7)
Eddie Castro 0 2 2 0 2 (6)
Bryce Starks 1 1 1 1 2 (6)
Kelly Kerrigan 0 1 0 0 3 (4)
Thomas Reich 2 1 0 0 0 (3)
JJ Martynse 1 0 2 0 0 (3)
Brad Pappalardo 0 0 0 1 2 (3)
Devin Defreece 1 0 0 1 0 (2)
Jim Lewis 0 0 0 1 1 (2)
Billy Meister 0 0 1 0 0 (1)\
Photos By Michael Kirby
|| (L-R) Charlie Venegas, Bryan Yarrow, and Bryce Starks race in a heat race. Venegas finished second in the A Final Friday night and second in the national speedway championship series, losing to Billy Janniro by four points.
||Billy Janniro won this year’s USA/AMA National Speedway Championship with convincing wins in both rounds of the series. Janniro was perfect in all his heat races and won the A final to take the championship. Janniro was also national speedway champ in 2008.
||The start of the A final pitting (L-R) Bart Bast, Bryan Yarrow, Charlie Venegas, and Billy Janniro at the start line. All were top point holders for the evening racing in the final. Janniro out of lane one took the checkered flag.
||Billy Janniro is all smiles after winning the 2010 USA/AMA National Speedway Championship, and talks with Fast Friday’s track announcer Mike Rooney after the A final.
||The top three speedway riders in the national championship after the final round take the winner’s podium Friday night at Fast Friday’s Speedway in Auburn. Charlie Venegas (L) was second in points with 37, Billy Janniro (center) was first with 41 and won the 2010 USA National Speedway Championship, and Bart Bast was third with 28 series points.