Saddlemen

Venegas Turns It On for Scratch Main Victory!

| 4 September 2017 12:12 pm

Fast Fridays Motorcycle Speedway
Gold Country Fairgrounds

Story and Photos by Michael Kirby
AUBURN, CA, SEPT. 1, 2017

The weather was hot, but the speedway racing at Auburn, California’s Fast Fridays Motorcycle Speedway was even hotter! The Gold Country Fairgrounds’ track was packed with fans wanting to get one last look at the crazy Extreme Sidecars teams and see them ride one more time this season, and those daredevils from Southern California did not disappoint.

The Sidecar team of Smylie Kinne & Chuck Heider (far left) used the number-one gate to their advantage en route to winning the Extreme Sidecars main event.

The Sidecar team of Smylie Kinne & Chuck Heider (far left) used the number-one gate to their advantage en route to winning the Extreme Sidecars main event.

On their 1100cc, three-wheeled chariots, they thrilled the crowd through three heat races and then a great final main event, which was won by the team of Smylie Kinne & Chuck Heider. In an event that is usually dominated by the team of Joe Jones & Tom Summers, Kinne & Heider pulled off an upset.

“We had gate number one, and we got the gate on them – that was the answer right there,” Kinne said. “Luckily, we went fast enough [that] they could not get around us. Joe is the best; that’s why he represents us in Australia in the World Cup.”

The Extreme Sidecars have made five visits north this year and have a solid fan base in Auburn.

Smylie Kinne & Chuck Heider take a victory lap after winning the Extreme Sidecars main event.

Smylie Kinne & Chuck Heider take a victory lap after winning the Extreme Sidecars main event.

Charlie Venegas came alive again this week, scoring a burning victory in the Scratch main event. Venegas handily won his first Scratch main event of the season two weeks ago, and he repeated that feat this week.

Coming out of lane one, Venegas got an excellent gate and took the inside lane, ahead of Billy Janniro, Bryan Yarrow and Bart Bast. But in a you-don’t-see-that-every-day moment, Janniro slid out and went down, bringing about a restart.

Again, proving his first great gate was not a fluke, Venegas again flew off the start line, making the inside, and he held his ground. Yarrow was the man who gave the best chase, but it was just not enough to catch the cagy veteran. Venegas won by a wide margin, followed by Yarrow, Bast and Janniro.

“Last week, I didn’t ride this engine; this is the engine I’ve been preparing for the track championship,” Venegas said. “This is all for next week [the track championship]; always working 125 percent.”

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A newcomer to Fast Fridays this season, Samuel Ramirez, won the Handicap main event. The 18-year-old made the trip up north from Orange County in Southern California. Riding off the 20-yard line, Ramirez won his semifinal and then the main event. Janniro was second. Back after a long break from Fast Fridays, Kurtis Hamill was third.

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William McCloskey put together a winning ticket in the Division Two main event. McCloskey has had one other D-2 main-event win, along with three second-place finishes so far this season in Division Two. McCloskey was undefeated on this evening, winning his heat race and then the main event. Jeremy Estes was second, and Shawn Eldredge was third.

Auburn’s own William McCloskey took the Division Two main-event victory – his second of the season.

Auburn’s own William McCloskey took the Division Two main-event victory – his second of the season.

In only his fifth night of racing at Fast Fridays, Chance Grove scored his third Division Three main-event win. Grove, who is picking up speedway racing very quickly, won his heat race and then stayed ahead of Jake Estes and Casey Cornilsen, in that order, in the main event for the win.

Catching on to speedway racing quickly, Foresthill, California’s Chance Grove (168) won his third Division Three main event of the season.

Catching on to speedway racing quickly, Foresthill, California’s Chance Grove (168) won his third Division Three main event of the season.

Friday night was the last night for riders to pick up points to be racing in the Fast Fridays track championship next week, on September 8. The top 16 riders in Division One and the top eight riders in Division Two and Division Three, determined by total season points, will race for the track championship. The championship night will run during the Gold Country Fair and will start one hour earlier, with racing blasting off at 7 p.m. instead of 8 p.m.

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Anthony Dion followed up his Youth main-event win last week with a repeat performance on this night. Dion stayed ahead of Cameron Krezman, who was second; Landon Norton, who was third; and Kyle Cunningham, who was fourth. This was Dion’s fifth win of the season.

Grass Valley, California’s Anthony Dion (16) picked up his fifth Youth main-event win of the season.

Grass Valley, California’s Anthony Dion (16) picked up his fifth Youth main-event win of the season.

Greg Moore topped the field in the Youth consolation main event. Second was Aidan McNutt, third was Sammy Tetrault, and fourth was Chase Kangas.

Keeping it in the Dion family, Anthony Dion’s uncle Nick Dion won the Trophy Dash. Lawrence McNutt was second and Rick Shafer was third.

Celebrating their respective wins with the Fast Fridays trophy girls are (from left to right) Sidecar winners Smylie Kinne & Chuck Heider, Scratch main-event victor Charlie Venegas, Youth main-event winner Anthony Dion, Trophy Dash winner Nick Dion, and Division Two main-event winner Will McCloskey.

Celebrating their respective wins with the Fast Fridays trophy girls are (from left to right) Sidecar winners Smylie Kinne & Chuck Heider, Scratch main-event victor Charlie Venegas, Youth main-event winner Anthony Dion, Trophy Dash winner Nick Dion, and Division Two main-event winner Will McCloskey.

Fast Fridays Motorcycle Speedway at the Gold Country Fairgrounds
Auburn, California
Results: September 1, 2017

SCRATCH MAIN: 1. Charlie Venegas; 2. Bryan Yarrow; 3. Bart Bast; 4. Billy Janniro.

HANDICAP MAIN: 1. Sammy Ramirez; 2. Billy Janniro; 3. Kurtis Hamill.

DIVISION 2 MAIN: 1. William McCloskey; 2. Jeremy Estes; 3. Shawn Eldredge.

DIVISION 3 MAIN: 1. Chance Grove; 2. Jake Estes; 3. Casey Cornilsen.

YOUTH MAIN: 1. Anthony Dion; 2. Cameron Krezman; 3. Landon Norton; 4. Kyle Cunningham.

YOUTH CONSOLATION MAIN: 1. Greg Moore; 2. Aidan McNutt; 3. Sammy Tetrault; 4. Chase Kangas.

TTROPHY DASH: 1. Nick Dion; 2. Lawrence McNutt; 3. Rick Shafer.

EXTREME SIDECARS: 1. Smylie Kinne/ Chuck Heider; 2. Jeremy Galein/ Eric Hernandez; 3. Joe Jones/ Tom Summers; 4. Robert Curry/ Lori Curry; 5. Bryan Motis/ Johnny Bach.

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