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2004 AMA Speedway Motorcycle Racing


AMA Speedway News 2004

2004 AMA Forms:

AMA National Riders.PDF  -   Letter of Indent.PDF  -   National Series Entry Form.PDF

To download the files above, right click on the link and select 'Save Target As' This will download it to your home computer.

AMA Website

Date: Mon, 26 Jul 2004 21:59:35 -0400
From: "Bill Amick" <bamick@ama-cycle.org>

Dear Friends,

Here's the pre-release of the 2004 AMA National Championship Speedway Series Presented by Progressive Insurance.

Information on the draw for round one and the designated alternates are below.

Thanks for your interest, and I hope many of you will be able to attend oneor more rounds.

Thanks also to the riders who requested bids to the series. It's a shamenot everyone can be included, and in anticipation that some will not agree with the field as we set it, please bear in mind that a few of the names that are missing are not included because the riders didn't request an entry. Entries are only accepted from riders who will commit to all three rounds of the series.

12 of the 14 seeds are locked in based on criteria announced last year. The 13th and 14th seeds and the 8 prelim round riders are selected by AMA Sports in consultation with the series organizers. If you don't like the selections and need someone to blame, I'm the guy. But I'm no dummy...I'm leaving the country!

Seriously, I will be out of the office from July 28 - August 10, so if I don't respond to messages that will be the reason.

Bill Amick
AMA Sports


PICKERINGTON, Ohio - An outstanding field of 22 national and international racers will answer the call on August 6 when the 2004 AMA National Championship Speedway Series Presented by Progressive Insurance begins.

Headed by two former World Champions -- Billy Hamill (1996) and Greg Hancock (1997) -- the field also boasts five past AMA National Champions: Hancock, Hamill, Mike Faria, Bobby Schwartz and Chris Manchester.

The three-round series begins on Friday, August 6, at Fast Fridays Speedway in Auburn, California, and heads south the next night to Wheel 2 Wheel Raceway in Victorville, California. The final round of the series will be September 24 at Fast Fridays Speedway.

Under a format unique to the AMA National Championship Series, there are 14riders seeded into the main program of the first event, and eight others will contest a preliminary round from which only two riders will advance to round out a 16-rider championship program.

Each evening of racing will pack 28 four-lap sprints into a three-hour program. The winner of each round will be decided in a sudden-death sprint featuring the four riders with the most points from their five programmed heat races. At the conclusion of each round of the series, the two lowest-scoring riders are relegated to the preliminary round at the next race.

Greg Hancock, who is currently the No. 5 ranked rider in the world, is the pre-race favorite and the defending champion of AMA Speedway. He was closely trailed in the 2003 series by young lions Ryan Fisher and BillyJanniro and fellow veteran Hamill. Those four riders, as well as Eric Carrillo, are all California natives who are based in Europe.

One rider in the series, Bartek Bardecki, is a Polish national who races full-time in the United States. All but one of the remaining riders hail from California or Nevada, while New Yorker Tom Sephton is the sole Eastern States representative in the series. Sephton earned his slot by winning a special qualifying event in June at Champion Speedway in Owego, New York.

Four riders will be making their AMA National Championship Series debuts: Justin Boyle, Matt Browne, Shawn Harmatiuk and Sephton.

Here is the full field of 22 riders entered in round one of the series on August 6:

Top 14 Seeds  Preliminary Round Riders
Bart Bast, Auburn, CA Bartek Bardecki, Alta, CA
Scott Brant, Riverside, CA Justin Boyle, Long Beach, CA
Eddie Castro, Ojai, CA Matt Browne, Pleasant Hill, CA
Mike Faria, Reno, NV Eric Carrillo, Newark, CA
Ryan Fisher, Norco, CA Shawn Harmatiuk, Garden Grove, CA
Greg Hancock, Costa Mesa, CA Chris Kerr, Grass Valley, CA
Billy Hamill, Monrovia, CA Bobby Schwartz, Costa Mesa, CA
Bobby Hedden, Folsom, CA Bobby Krips, Riverside, CA
Tommy Hedden, Auburn, CA  
Billy Janniro, Vallejo, CA  
Chris Manchester, Reno, NV  
Tom Sephton, Vestal, NY  
Charlie Venegas, San Bernardino, CA  
Bryan Yarrow, Vallejo, CA  

Draw for Round 1:
1 - Greg Hancock
2 - Qualifier 2
3 - Scott Brant
4 - Bobby Hedden
5 - Billy Janniro
6 - Qualifier 1
7 - Eddie Castro
8 - Ryan Fisher
9 - Charlie Venegas
10 - Billy Hamill
11 - Mike Faria
12 - Bart Bast
13 - Bryan Yarrow
14 - Tom Sephton
15 - Tommy Hedden
16 - Chris Manchester

Here is the draw for the preliminary round:
Prelim Heat One: Justin Boyle, Shawn Harmatiuk, Bobby Schwartz, Bobby Krips
Prelim Heat Two: Bartek Bardecki, Matt Browne, Eric Carrillo, Chris Kerr
Prelim Heats 3 and 4 lineups are based on results of Heats 1 & 2 per AMA Supplementary Regulations.
Alternates 1-2-3 for Round 1 in Auburn: JJ Martynse, Mark Carrillo and Greg Hooten Jr.
Alternates 1-2-3 for Round 2 in Victorville: Buck Blair, Gary Hicks and Jim Estes

To: 2004 AMA Speedway Promoters
From: Bill Amick
Date: May 10, 2004
Re: Age limits

Dear Friends,

As you all know very well, the question of age limits in Speedway racing has been a hot topic from time to time. There have been several developments in the last couple of years that prompt me to send this notice to our AMA Advisory Board and to Speedway promoters.

Current AMA Speedway rules provide for Youth classes including:

1. 51cc stock machines ages 4-8
2. 85cc 2-stroke and 125cc 4-strokes ages 7-11
3. 85cc 2-strokes and 250cc 4-strokes, ages 12-15

Our Speedway rules also place a 16-year minimum age on Division 3, Division 2 and Division 1 500cc Speedway, but with a provision that promoters can request waivers for younger riders.

I recently processed a waiver for Tim Gomez at the request of DeWayne Starke and the Winchester, California, promotion, and the general guidelines that we took into consideration in that case will continue to be our policy for future similar situations.

1. Based on AMA Sports rules, we will strictly abide by the rule stating that no riders under the age of 14 will be allowed to compete on machines with displacements over 250cc. That rule is a cornerstone of our agreement with the insurance providers who insure AMA competition.

2. Consequently, riders aged 14 and 15 can be considered for advancement from AMA Youth Speedway into AMA Pro-Am Speedway. The procedure is as follows:

  a. The rider and his parents or legal guardians need to discuss their desire to advance with the promoters at all AMA-sanctioned tracks at which they want to compete.

  b. The PROMOTER, not the rider, may request a variance from the AMA on behalf of the rider. The request should be accompanied by at least two SIGNED letters of recommendations from members of the AMA Speedway Advisory Committee, knowledgeable AMA Congress delegates or other experts.

  c. If a waiver is approved, it will authorize the promoter to advance the rider to Division 3 AMA Speedway, with later advancement to Division 2 allowed within that track's procedures.

  d. Advancement to Division 1 will not be allowed until the rider reaches the age of 16.

  e. When waivers are granted for a rider, the waiver will apply to any AMA track at the option of the promoter. The AMA will not require any promoter to allow 14 or 15 year olds to ride in D3 or D2. Consequently, it is possible that a rider will be allowed to advance at some tracks and not others.

  f. The rider's status will be provisional. They will be eligible to race for points and awards in D3 and D2, but if their performance is such that the AMA decides the advancement was premature, the waiver may be withdrawn.

We would be happy to discuss this with promoters of tracks that are not AMA-sanctioned in 2004, and hopefully a uniform policy can be adopted for the benefit of the riders involved.

This policy is in accordance with AMA Speedway rules and those rules will include these additional details in 2005.

Thanks for your interest and support, and comments are always welcome.

Best regards,

Bill Amick
AMA Vice President, Events and Entertainment

AMA National Speedway Championship Schedule Confirmed

Initial 12 rider invitations issued

May 6 - AMA Sports has confirmed the schedule for the 2004 AMA National Championship Speedway Series Presented by Progressive Insurance, and has issued an initial 12 invitations to the exclusive championship.

The three-round series will open with a doubleheader weekend August 6-7 at Fast Fridays Speedway in Auburn, California, and Wheel 2 Wheel Raceway in Victorville, California. The series finale will be in Auburn on September 24.

The exclusive series is limited to American Division 1 Speedway riders, US riders competing overseas, and foreign nationals who regularly compete in AMA Speedway. Twelve riders have earned automatic bids based on 2003 qualifying criteria, and 10 more will compete at the invitation of AMA Sports.

Fast Fridays Speedway is a longtime venue for AMA-sanctioned Speedway competition and is located just off Interstate 80 at the Gold Country Fairgrounds, north of Sacramento in the picturesque Northern California community of Auburn.

Wheel 2 Wheel Raceway is gearing up to host its first AMA National. The track is located just off Interstate 15 at the San Bernardino County Fairgrounds, northeast of Los Angeles in the High Desert community of Victorville.

Greg Hancock, the 1997 World Speedway Champion and sole American rider contesting the 2004 FIM Grand Prix Series, is the reigning champion of AMA Speedway racing. He will lead a strong contingent of European-based American riders who will take on the top names in domestic Speedway in the 2004 AMA series.

The dozen riders automatically qualified are:

Greg Hancock: Defending AMA National Champion and 1997 World Champion, a California native now racing out of Stockholm, Sweden

Ryan Fisher: Past AMA Junior National Champion and runner-up to Hancock in the 2003 AMA National Championship, currently based in Oxford, England

Billy Janniro: AMA's No. 3 rider in 2003, based in Coventry, England

Billy Hamill: Former AMA and World Champion, based in Sweden

Mike Faria: Former AMA Champion from Reno, Nevada

Bobby Hedden: 2003 AMA high-point Northern California rider

Scott Brant: 2003 AMA high-point Southern California rider

Cam Rafferty: 2003 AMA high-point Eastern States rider

Chris Manchester (a past AMA National Champion) Bart Bast, Charlie Venegas and Eddie Castro: Qualified based on their 2003 AMA National rankings

 "AMA Sports is excited about our 2004 national lineup," said the AMA's Bill Amick.
"We will again have an extraordinary international field of riders, ranging from seasoned veterans to several young riders just beginning to make their mark on the world speedway scene."

Veteran Speedway promoter Dave Joiner is the principal officer of Fast Fridays Speedway, which will organize all three rounds of the 2004 AMA National Championship Speedway Series Presented by Progressive Insurance.

Southern California-based RAZ Video will work in cooperation with Fast Fridays on promotion of the new event in Victorville.

For more information, contact Fast Fridays Speedway at (530) 878-7223 or visit

© 2004, American Motorcyclist Association

May 5, 2004

The USA was seeded into the 2003 WTC but the AMA withdrew because there were not enough riders willing to make the commitment...for a variety of reasons, some that were arguably better than others. I should specifically point out that this was not a situation where riders made commitments and then backed out...there simply was not a representative team prepared to make the commitment.

As a result, we lost our seeding and were not invited to the dance in 2004. The AMA's position remains the same as in the past. We will provide administrative support -- and some financial support -- to a US team, but we will not engage in arm twisting. As a matter of policy, AMA Sports does not take the "old school" approach of pressuring riders to compete. We make FIM championship opportunities available to as many riders as possible, and once they sign on, we expect riders to fulfill their commitments. When they fail to do so, it damages future
opportunities for others.

We were disappointed that a WTC team didn't come together in 2003. We learned a few things in the process, and hopefully some other people did as well.

Bill Amick

U21 Information:
A rider becomes eligible for the FIM U21 championship on their 16th birthday and remains eligible through the calendar year in which they turn 21.

Individual Speedway World Championship Qualifying Rounds

Australia (MA)        - - 2 1 - - 3 (4)
Austria (ÖAMTC)       - - 2 - - - 2 (1)
Belgium (FMB)         - - - 1 - - 1(0)
Canada (CMA)          1 - - -- - 1 (1)
Croatia (HMS)         - 1 - - - - 1(1)
Czech Republic (ACCU) 2 - - 2 1 - 5 (4)
Denmark (DMU)         2 1 2 - - 1 6(5)
Finland (SML)         2 - - - - 1 3(2)
France (FFM)          - 2 - - - - 2 (2)
Germany (DMSB)        2 - - 2 - - 4 (4)
Great Britain (ACU)   2 2 2 - - 1 7 (7)
Hungary (MAMS)        - 1 - 2 - - 3 (3)
Italy (FMI)           2 -- - 1 - 3 (2)
Latvia (LaMSF)        - - 1 - - - 1 (1)
Netherlands (KNMV)    - 1 - - - - 1 (1)
New Zealand (MNZ)     - - 1 - - - 1 (1)
Norway (NMF)          - - - 2 - - 2 (2)
Poland (PZM)          2 - 2 - 2 - 1 - 7 (5)
Russia (MFR)          - - 2 - 1 - 3 (3)
Slovakia (SMF)        - - - 1 - - 1 (1)
Slovenia (AMSZ)       1 3 - - - - 4 (3)
Sweden (SVEMO)        - 2 2 2 - 1 7 (6)
Ukraine (FMU)         - 1 - - - - 1 (1)
USA (AMA)            - 2 - 1 - - 3 (3)
Track Reserves (FMNR) 2 2 2 2 - - 8 (8)

Speedway World Cup

Qualifying Round 1: Finland, Germany, Italy, Latvia (at Lonigo IT)
Qualifying Round 2: Austria, Hungary, Russia, Slovenia (at Gyula H)

Semi-Final 1: Great Britain, Poland, Sweden, Winner of Qualifying Round 1
(at Eastbourne GB)
Semi-Final 2: Australia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Winner of Qualifying
Round 2 (at Eastbourne GB)

The 2004 AMA National Championship will be a 3 round series with rounds taking place on August 6, August 7, and September 24.  The Youth National Championship will be on September 3.

Gary Roberts - groberts@iee.org

AMA Youth Speedway Equipment Regulations

Date: Tue, 3 Feb 2004 10:36:28 -0500
From: "Bill Amick" <bamick@ama-cycle.org>
To: All

From: AMA Sports

AMA Youth Speedway Equipment Regulations

Here are the AMA Sports basic regulations for Youth Speedway in 2004.  This may come in handy in the current discussions. These rules are essentially identical to 2003 and were developed with the guidance of the AMA Speedway Advisory Committee and with input from promoters.

As an editorial comment, I would point out that AMA Sports has three main goals with these rules:
  1. Encourage development of 85cc 2-stroke speedway machines
  2. Maintain a place for existing and traditional junior (youth) equipment
  3. Allow maximum flexibility to riders and promoters -- to encourage rather than discourage participation.

Excerpt from 2004 AMA Pro-Am Speedway Rules:

Youth Speedway classes are available for riders aged 4-15 as follows:

Class 1 -- 4-8 years old. 51cc max. displacement, 2-stroke or 4-stroke engines.  Riders may be classified at option of promoter as A, B or C (beginner).  Under no circumstances may Class 1 machines be allowed on the track at the same time as larger machines.

Class 2 -- 7-11 years old. 85cc max. displacement for 2-strokes, 125cc max. displacement for 4-strokes. Riders may be classified at option of promoter as A, B or C (beginner).  At option of promoter, 2-stroke and 4-stroke machinery may be run separately.

Class 3 -- 12-15 years old. 85cc max. displacement for 2-strokes, 267cc max. displacement for 4-strokes.  Riders may be classified at option of promoter as A, B or C (beginner).  At option of promoter, 2-stroke and 4-stroke machinery may be run separately.

Class 2 and 3 machines may be grouped together at option of promoter, provided riders compete only within their own classification, i.e. A, B or C.

Promoters, referees, parents and guardians are reminded that not only engine size, but "machine fit" is important in Speedway competition.

All are reminded of the referee's authority to prohibit the participation of any rider judged by the referee to be unqualified to safely negotiate the course.

Bill Amick

The 2004 Annual AMA Speedway Planning Meeting

On January 18, the AMA held the annual Speedway planning meeting in Sacramento, CA. The following notes were taken. This is not comprehensive minutes, it is items that I believe will be of interest to US Speedway riders and supporters.

The plan this year for a National Series is again on, with 2 rounds in Auburn and a third round at a to-be-announced track. The dates are Aug 6 and Sept 24 at Auburn and August 7 at the other track.

There is interest in Southern California for a round of the Youth National Championship. A proposal to turn the Youth National Championship into a 2 round series has, in principle, been agreed, however the track must
demonstrate successful ability to hold events and an AMA sanction must be obtained for the event.

Although 4 US places were requested for the Under 21 World Championships, only 3 places were authorized. Those places have been assigned to Ryan Fisher, Eric Carrillo and Bryan Yarrow.

The AMA is looking at changing its business model, particularly in the way its sanction fees are structured. The goal is to minimize the upfront costs to promoters. It is hoped that this will encourage more tracks to become
AMA sanctioned facilities.

The Indianapolis Speedway facility will this year hold Youth Speedway events. They are pushing the 80cc class and have 10 machines currently under construction. They plan to hold 12 Speedway events this year.

Action Park East (Greene, NY) and Champion Speedway (Owego, NY) each plan 9 events.

SDR plans 4 events.

Fast Fridays (Auburn, CA) plans 19 events.

It is hoped that the Victorville track will hold an under 21 event again in 2004, preferably with an AMA sanction.

A number of changes to the rule book were discussed. Most were merely fixing errors, duplications or providing clarification. Thanks went to George Halyak, the Fast Fridays referee, for his prudence, in identifying so many anomalies. Of interest to riders:

1. The rules for machine specification for kids 12-15 have been broadened to include 5 valve heads. Damon Lengle requested this change. It is hoped that this move will broaden opportunities to interest more kids into Youth Speedway.

2. The makes models and types of eligible muffler systems has been taken out of the rule book and been made the responsibility of each promoter. This is because local noise regulations vary from track to track (due to proximity of the tracks) and each promoter will let riders know his/her approved list.

3. A long discussion took place, to try and find a position format to provide fair restarts, in the event of a race being stopped.

The conclusion was that it is impossible to satisfy all situations, to restart a race where the leader is half a lap ahead or a race where 4 riders have been evenly matched would require a different format to be fair. But the rule book has to provide a “one size fits all” instruction. The wording was changed to state “with adequate spacing” between the riders. A number of solutions were suggested, varying from 10 yards apart to directly in line tire to tire. The wording gives promoters/referees an opportunity to experiment with re-starting position format procedures.

A number of forms were made available for riders to apply to enter championship events. These are available above.

NOTE:  I have been asked to clarify the reference to a 2 round Youth National Series. It is not intended for 2004. The plan is the same single event format at Auburn for 2004, and it is hoped that a second suitable track is available for a 2 round series in 2005.  It is hoped to have an Under 21 single event championship in Southern California.

I hope this clears any confusion.

Gary Roberts

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