July 14, 2023
Fast Friday’s Motorcycle Speedway
Michael Kirby Story and Photos
The Extreme Sidecars roared into Fast Friday’s Motorcycle Speedway in Auburn Ca ready for action Friday night. The sidecars bring their special brand of speedway racing and are fan favorites at the Gold Country Fairgrounds tricky dirt oval. This was the third of five rounds for the Extreme Sidecars at Fast Fridays this season which includes the AMA National Sidecar Championship on September 2.
The teams in this round Friday night were led by Current AMA National Sidecar Champions Robert & Laurie Curry, Joe Jones & Johnny Glover, Smylie Kinne & Chuck Heider and Billy Janniro & Kinsy Garza. Janniro is the eleven time and current AMA National Speedway Champion but did double duty Friday night riding in the speedway motorcycle program and the sidecar program.
In the heat races all the teams but Janniro/Kinsy won a race, the Curry’s the first heat, Jones and Glover the second and Kinne/Heider the third leading into the main event. Janniro though fairly new to sidecar racing did great job keeping up with the other teams and challenged for a win several times. In the sidecar main event though, the racing got real serious fast. Curry and Curry lined up in lane one, Jones and Glover in two, Janniro and Kinsy in three and outside Kinne and Heider took their place. Out of the gate it was the Curries and Jones and Glover taking the lead. Neck and neck they battled bumping some into each other but not enough for a foul as the Curry edged ahead. By lap three the Curry’s increased their lead and held it for first place and the checkered flag. Jones and Glover were second, Kinne and Heider were third and Janniro and Kinsy were fourth. All teams did a fantastic job and were mobbed in the sidecar pits for autographs as fans left the arena.
Doing double duty on the sidecars and motorcycles Billy Janniro did not get distracted and picked up his fourth scratch main event of the season. Bouncing back and forth from the sidecars and his speedway bike Janniro won his first heat race, was second to Blake Borello in his semi-final then out of lane two in the scratch main event took the win. Bart Bast, back from a sidelining injury early in the season showed he did not lose, and step gave and Janniro a good run for his money nipping at him from behind and challenging the champ for the entire race. Bast finished second, Borello was third and Louie Mersaroli was fourth.
Young Timmy Dion picked up his first main event win of the 2023 season with a convincing race in the handicap main event. A real trooper and a kid that get back up on his bike every time he falls persevered with hard fought wins in his heat race, semi-final and then handicapped on the 20-yard line a win in the handicap main event. Again, Bart Bast just back on a bike after an injury in week four showed the seasoned veteran was as good as new finished second and Chase Kangas was third. Next week Dion should be starting on the 30-yard line with the win.
Sammy Tetrault is two for three this season winning his second Division II main event. Racing only three times this season so far, Tetrault has won two main events and finished second in the other race. Friday night Tetrault won his heat race and the main event for a perfect night. John Peters was second and Troy McQueen was third. Tetrault also rode in the Division I handicap program. John Gauthreaux picked up the main event win in Division III. Gauthreaux was second in his heat race and then put it together for the win in the main event. It was Gauthreaux’s second DIII main event win of the season. Hunter Castillo was second and Troy McQueen was third.
Up from Southern California and racing for the first time at Fast Fridays this season, Levi Leutz made the miles count and picked up a win in the Youth 250 division. Leutz was perfect for the night winning all his heat races and the main event. Caden Cavirkas was second.
The Rearick brothers were at it again in the Youth 150 division. Beginning in the third week of the season one of the brothers has stood on the winner’s podium in the Youth 150 division. Usually it is the brothers, Wesley and Riley battling it out for first or second place in the Youth 150 division. This week it was Riley Rearick that was able to hold on for the win in their main event. Riley also won his heat race. In both races Wesley Rearick was on his brother’s tail, neck and neck, and in each race and made a hard charge at the finish line to catch Riley only to fall short by inches. Riley starts on the 30-yard line and Wesley starts on the 50-yard line. Looks like Riley might move closer to his brother next week on the 40-yard line. Wesley Rearick was second and Matthew Wright was third.
Next week July 21 one of the most highly anticipated speedway events of the season returns to Fast Friday’s. The North vs. South Challenge grudge match puts the best Southern California speedway riders against the best Northern California speedway riders for another year of bragging rights. This will be the 32nd year for the iconic challenge as the North leads the South 19 wins to 11 wins. For speedway fans this is the one event not to be missed. “Fast Friday’s the Place to be on Friday nights.”
Results for 07-14-23
Division I Scratch Main Event
1-Billy Janniro, 2-Bart Bast, 3-Blake Borello, 4-Louie Mersaroli
Division I Handicap Main Event
1-Timmy Dion, 2-Bart Bast, 3-Chase Kangas
Division II Main Event
1-Sammy Tetrault, 2-John Peters, 3-Cody Akers
Division III Main Event
1-John Gauthreaux, 2-Hunter Castillo, 3-Troy McQueen
Youth 250 Main Event
1-Levi Leutz, 2-Caden Cavrikas
Youth 150 Main Event
1-Riley Rearick, 2-Wesley Rearick, 3-Matthew Wright
Extreme Sidecar Main Event (Round Two)
1-Robert Curry/Laurie Curry, 2-Joe Jones/Johnny Glover,
3-Smylie Kinne/Chuck Heider, 4-Billy Janniro/Kinsy Garza