The Grand Industry Hills Expo Center
City of Industry, California
Bruce Flanders Ugly Hawaiian Shirt Night
Industry Racing, CA, USA - July 19, 2017
Thanks to Ryan Evans
Former Under 21 National Champion “Mad” Max Ruml’s evening began on a sour note but he finished on top after winning a thrilling Scratch Main Event to end an action-packed evening at Industry Racing.
Luke “Little Missile” Becker, who entered the Scratch Main Event undefeated, left the starting line first but Aaron Fox, who started in gate two, posed a threat in turn one. Becker found enough traction in the outside cushion to get around Fox while Max Ruml charged underneath on the back straight to take second. Becker led after lap one but was under tremendous pressure. Becker’s dilemma was having to choose between going to the dirt to thwart Max Ruml or stay on the inside to block Fox. He chose the former and Max Ruml made him pay when he swept around the outside on lap three to snatch the lead. The current Under 21 chased the new race leader the rest of the way but couldn’t force a mistake. Max Ruml crossed the finish line first, Becker finished second, Fox was third, and Austin Novratil finished fourth.
The evening commenced with Fox beating Novratil in the first heat. Max Ruml’s evening began with a broken chain at the start line in event two. Gage Geist was victorious with Tyson Talkington getting second. Broc Nicol and Dillon Ruml raced wheel-to-wheel for two laps before Nicol edged ahead for the win. Becker used the outside to defeat Gino Manzares and bring an end to round one.
Manzares started round two by beating Nicol. Max Ruml looked to have a comfortable victory in event 13 but Novratil went to the ample outside dirt and gained a lot of ground as they began the final lap. Novratil was within striking distance as they entered the final corner but slipped off the low-side of his machine which remarkably remained upright. Max Ruml took the win, Shaun Harmatiuk was second, and Novratil pushed his bike across the line for third and a loud ovation from the crowd. Fox beat Geist in the next heat for his second win in a row. Becker matched Fox by winning the last race of the second round.
Manzares began the final round with his second straight win. Novratil powered to victory in event 24. Fox held off Dillon Ruml to stay perfect. Becker defeated Max Ruml to complete the heats with a perfect score as well.
Becker maintained his unblemished evening with a victory in the first semi while Novratil took second to accompany Becker to the main. Fox led the second semi but had Max Ruml hounding him throughout the race. Max Ruml found enough grip on the outside to take the lead on the final lap and race away with the win. Fox held on to second and transferred to the main as well.
Nicol won the Scratch Consolation, Manzares was second, Talkington finished third, and Geist was fourth.
After winning the Support Main Event in his debut at Costa Mesa, 16 year old Northern California native Blake Borello continued to impress the Southern California fans with a Second Division Main Event victory in his first-ever meeting on a 500 at Industry. Fellow teenager Michael Wells finished second, last week’s winner Chet Kohler was third, and Ron Davis finished fourth.
Brent Smith was the initial leader of the Third Division Main Event but Kevin Fiore didn’t allow him to build a big lead. Smith’s racing line grew wider with each lap and the result was a shrinking advantage. Smith finally gave way in turn four of lap three and Fiore charged underneath. Fiore took over first but went down in turn two and handed the lead back to Smith who led to the checkered flag. Kevin Fife was second, George Yates finished third, and Fiore was fourth.
Travis Horn looked destined to win his second consecutive Mini 150 First Division Main Event but he slid off in the final corner. Luke Whitcomb was the beneficiary and took home the victory with Slater Lightcap getting second. Horn showed he was unfazed by picking himself up and running to the finish line.
Cole Ayers put together five smooth laps and won the Mini 150 Second Division Main Event for the first time in his career. Justin Almon finished second, Levi Leutz was third, and Andrew Russell finished fourth.
Gavin Geist led the Pee Wee Main until he fell just shy of completing the first lap. Conner Salazar took over the lead with Ken Matsudaira right behind him. Matsudaira eventually passed Salazar but fell with the finish line in sight thus gifting the lead and the victory to Salazar. Dakota Black finished second, Strydrr Uebersetzig was third, Matsudaira was credited with fourth, Geist was sixth, and Penny Hall was sixth.
The title sponsor of the event was long-time track sponsor Laidlaw’s Harley Davidson. The program included the annual mini bike challenge race featuring Laidlaw’s employees. The night was also the annual Bruce Flanders Ugly Hawaiian Shirt Night which honors the only primary announcer in the track’s history and who is an icon in many different motor sports. The festivities included a contest to determine who was wearing the ugliest Hawaiian shirt.
Industry Racing will be dark next week but the next event will be Haddick’s Classic Car Night the following Wednesday, August 2. Many classic cars will be on display. In addition, many of American Speedway’s legends and heroes will be in attendance, signing autographs, and taking pictures with fans.
Scratch Main Event
5 - Max Ruml
22n - Luke Becker
46 - Aaron Fox
7 - Austin Novratil
4 - Broc Nicol
24 - Gino Manzares
48 - Tyson Talkington
10 - Gage Geist
Pee Wee Main Event
5 - Conner Salazar
503 - Dakota Black
1000 - Strydrr Uebersetzig
74 - Ken Matsudaira (fell)
6 - Gavin Geist (fell, remounted)
313 - Penny Hall
Mini 150 Second Division Main Event
116 - Cole Ayers 0
7 - Justin Almon 0
9 - Levi Leutz 10
96 - Andrew Russell 10
Mini 150 First Division Main Event
27 - Luke Whitcomb 20
2 - Slater Lightcap 60
25 - Travis Horn 10(fell)
Third Division Main Event
103 - Brent Smith
311 - Kevin Fife
136 - George Yates
159 - Kevin Fiore (fell, remounted)
Second Division Main Event
27n - Blake Borello
214 - Michael Wells
202 - Chet Kohler
163 - Ron Davis
First Division Heat Scoring 1,2,3,T
3 – Dillon Ruml 2,0,2,4
4 – Broc Nicol 3,2,2,7
5 – Max Ruml E,3,2,5
6 – Shawn McConnell 1,1,1,3
7 – Austin Novratil 2,1,3,6
10 – Gage Geist 3,2,2,7
11 – Bobby Schwartz 1,1,1,3
22n – Luke Becker 3,3,3,9
24 – Gino Manzares 2,3,3,8
37 – Joey Donaldson 0,0,0,0
46 – Aaron Fox 3,3,3,9
48 – Tyson Talkington 2,2,1,5
139 – Shaun Harmatiuk 1,2,1,4
808n – Bob Hicks 1,1,0,2
1: Fox, Novratil, Schwartz, Donaldson
2: Geist, Talkington, Hicks, M. Ruml (engine failure)
3: Nicol, D. Ruml, McConnell
4: Becker, Manzares, Harmatiuk
12: Manzares, Nicol, Hicks, Donaldson
13: M. Ruml, Harmatiuk, Novratil (fell, remounted)
14: Fox, Geist, McConnell
15: Becker, Talkington, Schwartz, D. Ruml
23: Manzares, Geist, Schwartz
24: Novratil, Nicol, Talkington
25: Fox, D. Ruml, Harmatiuk, Hicks
26: Becker, M. Ruml, McConnell, Donaldson
Semi #1: Becker, Novratil, Nicol, Talkington
Semi #2: M. Ruml, Fox, Manzares, Geist