Fast Fridays Speedway
Gold Country Fairgrounds
USA vs World
Fast Friday's Motorcycle Speedway,
Gold Country Fairgrounds
USA wins International Meeting
By Michael Kirby (Story & Photos)
AUBURN, CALIFORNIA, October 10, 2014
YouTube Video By Anthony Bernardi
Fast Friday's Motorcycle Speedway finished its 2014 season with an international flair closing their successful season with the annual USA vs. the World challenge race at the Gold Country Fairgrounds in Auburn Friday night. In front of near capacity crowd, many invited first responders from the Applegate Fire, the USA team defeated the World team 55-53 in one of the closest contests ever in the international match-up. Fast Friday's owner David Joiner once again assembled a talented team from Europe to challenge a skilled USA team made up of America's best riders.
Led by four time returning English rider Lewis Bridger the 2014 World team consisted of Bridger, Robin Aspegren and Magnus Karlsson of Sweden, Dawid Lampart of Poland and USA riders Chris Kerr and Max Ruml. Aspegren was making his second trip for the challenge and Lampart and Karlsson both in the competition for the first time. The USA team was led by 2014 AMA USA National Champion Billy Janniro included Bart Bast, Charlie Venegas, Bryce Starks, Tommy Hedden and Bob Hicks. The winners take home no big honors in the good natured competition other than bragging rights and a trophy, but the racing was fast and serious. Not since 2011 and 2012 has the final score been this close when the USA won by three points in those years. The USA now leads in the overall tally with ten victories to the World's three victories since the competition began in 2002. "We all knew it was going to be tough this year, there was never a big gap, we were real close all night," said Bart Bast. "We didn't really have a strategy; just win as many races as you can."
The racing format put two riders from each team in 18 heat races, three points for the winner, two points for second, one point for third and no points for fourth place. The winner being the team with the most points after 18 heats. The USA jumped out front from the first race and after three heats held their biggest lead of the evening at 14-4. The USA team continued to lead and after eight heats the score was 28-19. In heat nine though World chose to use their joker option and Bridger was able to pick up double points with a win. Combined with teammate Max Ruml's second place finish two points gave them eight points for the heat against just one point scored by Tommy Hedden for the USA. The wise joker maneuver put the World just two points behind at 29-27.
It was not until heat eleven when the team of Bridger and Ruml for the World and Janniro and Starks for the USA met was the World able to take the lead. Bridger picked up the win for three, Ruml finished second for two and Starks finished third for one. Janniro in a rare fall was unable to finish leaving the USA with only the one point and the USA fell behind 35-33. The World led until heat 15 when Hedden and Hicks combined with five points for the USA and brought the lead back to the USA at 46-45. Going into the final race the score was 53-50 with the USA still leading but with five points available for either team the night was on the line. Hedden and Hicks rolled to the line for the USA and Bridger and Ruml pulled in for the World. It was hot racing as the tapes went up and Hicks and Bridger both went down unable to finish the race. Ruml was able to outlast Hedden picking up three points for the World and Hedden added two points for the USA with his second place finish making the final score 55-53 for the USA.
Leading all riders on both teams was the World's Bridger with 15 points including his bonus Joker points. Bart Bast led the USA team with 12 points. "It takes a few races to adapt to the track and on borrowed bikes I still think we did a good job, said Swedish rider Magnus Karlsson. "We nearly got there, but it wasn't quite good enough in the end, but that's the way it goes."
It was a wonderful evening of international speedway racing camaraderie for the riders some journeying thousands of miles to come compete in Auburn and a crowd pleasing exceptional finish to a great Fast Friday's Motorcycle Speedway season.
USA vs. World Results 10-10-14
USA-55 / World 53
USA - 55 Points
Bart Bast 3 1 3 3 2 0-12
Billy Janniro 3 2 0 0 3 3 -11
Tommy Hedden 3 2 1 0 3 2-11
Bryce Starks 2 1 3 1 0 1-8
Bob Hicks 1 1 0 3 2 0-7
Charlie Venegas 2 0 1 0 0 3-6
World - 53 Points
Lewis Bridger (England) 0 3 6 3 3 0-15
Max Ruml (USA) 1 2 2 2 1 3-11
Dawid Lampart (Poland) 0 3 2 2 1 2-10
Magnus Karlsson (Sweden) 1 3 2 1 0 2-9
Chris Kerr (USA) 2 0 0 1 2 1-6
Robin Aspegren (Sweden) 0 0 0 2 0 0-2
150cc Division 2
1. Landon Collins 2. Charlie Trana 3. Anthony Dion
150cc Division 1
1. Sterling Martin 2. Cameron Krezman 3. Dylan Wagner
Photos By Michael Kirby
||Members of the USA and the World teams celebrate a fantastic night of international racing at Fast Fridays Motorcycle Speedway in Auburn Friday night. The USA team won the annual event 55-53 in front of a packed stadium. Pictured (left-right) Robin Aspegren, Bryce Starks, Tommy Hedden, Bart Bast, Magnus Karlsson, Lewis Bridger, Billy Janniro, Charlie Venegas, Dawid Lampart and sitting Max Ruml.
||Swedish riders Robin Aspegren (left) and Magnus Karlsson lead in a heat race during the annual USA vs. the World challenge at Fast Fridays. Karlsson was making his first trip to America to compete in Auburn.
||Auburn's Bob Hicks rode for the USA team and scored seven points.
The start of a heat race featuring Charlie Venegas (left) and Swedish rider Robin Aspegren (right).
||Polish rider Dawid Lampart scored 10 points for the World team Friday night.
||Tommy Hedden (left) and Swedish rider Magnus Karlsson race tight coming out of turn two in a heat race during the USA vs. World competition. Hedden scored 11 points for the USA and Karlsson scored nine points for the World for the evening. Following close behind is USA's Bob Hicks (right rear) and Robin Aspegren (left rear).art of the grand final race Friday night. First and second place riders in the semi-final races qualified for the grand final. (left-right) Austin Novratil, Bart Bast, Charlie Venegas and Billy Janniro. Janniro won the final making his night perfect with seven wins and 21 points for the final round of the championship series.