Salute to our Military Night - Industry Racing, CA, USA - June 26
There are certain statistical numbers that resonate throughout the sports world. The number 56 has certainly held that distinction for over 70 years. Baseball icon Joe DiMaggio accomplished the near-mythical feat of hitting safely in 56 consecutive games in 1941.
Former World Champion Billy "The Bullet" Hamill put his name next to that of the Yankee Clipper by winning all of his races on Salute to our Military Night at Industry Racing to run his consecutive scratch race victory streak to an unbelievable 56.
As has been the case every evening that he has competed this season Hamill entered the main event undefeated. He had first choice of starting position and chose gate one. Former World Finalist Josh Larsen had second choice and picked gate two. Aaron Fox selected gate three which left former National Champion Charlie "The Edge" Venegas with gate four.
Hamill got the best start and led into turn one. Hamill held on the back straight with Venegas and Larsen side-by-side behind him. The battle for second was intense but the leader was pulling away. Larsen secured second and Venegas was hung out to dry on the outside and Fox slipped underneath him for third. Hamill led all the way to the finish and the positions behind him remained unchanged. He was followed by Larsen, Fox, and Venegas respectively.
The evening began with a bang as Shawn "Mad Dog" McConnell led the first heat for three laps before 16 year old sensation "Mad" Max Ruml passed him for the lead and the win. Hamill beat "Battling" Buck Blair in the second heat. Fox was victorious over former Under 21 National Champion Austin Novratil. Michael Raines held off former Junior National Champion Jason Ramirez to end the first round with a win.
Raines started the second round by beating Tim Gomez for his second straight win. Hamill defeated McConnell for his second win in a row. Blair and Max Ruml had a furious four-lap battle with Blair getting the victory. Fox defeated Larsen and Venegas in a very entertaining last race of round two.
Venegas opened the final round of heats with a victory over Blair. Novratil beat McConnell in event 23 but suffered an engine failure on the cool-down lap that ended his evening. Fox remained perfect with a win ahead of Max Ruml. Hamill matched Fox's perfect score by defeating Larsen to end the heats.
Larsen made a great start from gate four in the first semi and used the outside to take the lead and the win with Fox getting second to join him in the main. Hamill kept his streak intact by winning the second semi with Venegas following him into the main event.
Blair and Raines waged a great side-by-side battle before Raines slid off which allowed the native of Colorado to win the Consolation. McConnell was second, Max Ruml finished third, and Raines was credited with fourth.
Steve "Beach Ball" Brown quickly worked through traffic and grabbed the lead in the Third Division Main Event. He cruised the rest of the way to earn the victory. Chris Wiggins finished second, Rick Howard was third, Tony DeAlmeida finished fourth, and Dave Troutt was fifth.
Slater Lightcap was the initial leader in the Mini 150 Main Event but was under immense pressure from the hard-charging Gino Scopellite and Courtney Crone. Crone secured the lead the second time they went down the back straight. The young lady was never seriously threatened after that and went on to victory. Sebastian "Big Daddy" Palmese was second, Scopellite finished third, Lightcap was fourth, Jake Isaac finished fifth, Tristan Britt was sixth, and Dylan Smith finished seventh.
Chris Jones substituted for his brother Joe but never missed a beat as he partnered with Johnny Glover to win the Sidecar Main Event. Bryan Motis and Josh Bennett finished second, Gerard Jackson and Dave German were third, and Jeff Rowe and John Bach finished fourth.
Industry Racing will be dark on July 3 because of the Independence Day holiday but the racing will return on Wednesday, July 10 for Haddick's Classic Car Night. All divisions of speedway and the sidecars will be on the program and watch for a big announcement regarding this event.
First Division Heat Scoring 1 2 3 T
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