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BILLY HAMILL WINS SPEEDWAY CYCLE MAIN AT INDUSTRY SPEEDWAY JUNE 2011

BILLY HAMILL WINS SPEEDWAY CYCLE MAIN AT INDUSTRY SPEEDWAY JUNE 2011
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Industry, CA. June 1, 2011 – Billy “The Bullet” Hamill, the 1996 World Champion and four-time U.S. Champion, won the initial feature of the eighth annual season of speedway motorcycle racing at Industry Speedway Wednesday night in front of the largest crowd in track history. More than 2,500 people seeking two-wheel action at the indoor 5,000 seat Grand Arena saw 40 action-filled races on the dirt track at the Industry Hills Expo Center. The track's 15-week series is now sponsored by Bruvado Premium Mexican Lager and is being taped each week for later telecasts on the Versus Network. In another new development, fourth year track promoter Jeff Immediato said Industry Speedway is part of a new three track racing circuit with races at San Bernardino on Fridays and Costa Mesa on Saturdays. Points from all three tracks will count towards an overall speedway cycle championship.

Hamill started the five-abreast rider main event from the inside lane. When the starting gate lifted, he shot into the first turn in front of second lane starter Shawn McConnell. Hamill, a former Monrovia resident now living in Carlsbad, won by four lengths. Eddie Castro took third place from Jimmy Fishback on the third lap and trailed McConnell by two lengths. Fishback and Nate Perkins, now relocated from Laughlin, NV to Cypress, trailed in fourth and fifth.

In three rounds of heat races, Hamill won two heats and finished second in the other for 11-points. He also won one of the two four-rider semi-final races for the high point riders from heat races. Mike Faria won all three of his heat races for the maximum 12 points, but he slipped out of an automatic transfer to the feature on the final lap of his semi-final race and dropped to third. He was slated to race in the four-rider last chance race that added the winner to the feature. However, that event had to be canceled by track officials after crashes and delays pushed racing close to the strict 10 pm curfew.

Kevin Fife, a 41-year old rookie, won the 500cc support division main for newer riders in only his fourth night of speedway cycle racing. The Upland resident and former grandstand spectator watched his friend Mike Salyer race in Division 3 last season and decided to race this year. Fife led all four laps to earn his first trophy and $45 cash put up by a grandstand spectator before the race. Rocco Scopellite, a 15-year old from Huntington Beach, won his first 500cc support division main. He raced as a 250cc Junior Division rider through last season.

Max Ruml, a 14-year old from Huntington Beach, took the 250cc youth feature after leading all four laps. Nick Varner, 11, won one of the 200cc Youth main events. Tristan Britt, 8, of Huntington Beach earned his first 200cc medal victory after racing as a pee-wee last season. Shea Bendykowski, a blonde 11-year old rookie from Temecula, won her first 200cc youth main on her first visit to Industry Speedway after racing at Costa Mesa earlier this season. She made an alert last lap pass on the inside after race-long leader Mavrick Malloy, from Chino Hills, drifted wide in the final turn. Six pee-wee riders, including a 5-year old, took part in pee-wee division heat racing.

Opening night at Industry had a higher than normal number of red flag after falls injured riders. C. J. Sanborn, a 2010 rookie, was leading the support main event on the first lap when he drifted wide under power in the fourth turn. His cycle slammed hard into the wooden barrier in front of the crash-wall as he was attempting to dismount. Although the wooden wall has built-in give, similar to SAFER barriers at large speedways, he reclined on the track in pain and complaining of shortness of breath astride his cycle. Track EMT staff rushed to his aid eventually placed Sanborn on a gurney and moved him to the ambulance for further evaluation. They called in a Los Angeles County paramedics unit and an ambulance transported him to a nearby hospital for diagnostic tests for possible back or rib injuries.

During the youth 250cc main event, Kurtis Hamill, 12-year old son of the D-1 feature winner, was second on the final lap when he crashed into the first turn wall and remained on the ground as Max Ruml received the waving checkered flag. EMTs attended to him for many minutes with his dad Billy nearby. Kurtis was shaken considerably and taken to the track ambulance and kept there for precautionary observation. His relieved father then returned to the pits for his cycle and raced his No. 104 to victory in the D-1 500cc feature that concluded at 9:58 pm.

The always exciting 1,000cc sidecar teams had a higher than usual seven rigs, including a new Harley-Davidson cycle and sidecar to compete against the Suzuki and Yamaha cycles. They ran two rounds of heat races with three or four rigs in heat 1A and B and 2A and B and raced in their usual clockwise direction. The four sidecar teams with the most points ran in their main event. On the first lap two teams collided in turn two, spilling sidecar rider Brandi McElroy onto the track. The front wheel of Joe Jones' cycle hit her back and she remained on the track for several minutes with back pain. She rode back to the pits astride the sidecar and declined transport to a hospital for further medical attention. The sidecar main was not restarted because of the fast-approaching curfew and the need to complete the D-1 feature before 10:00 pm.

Two winged California Lightning Sprints were on display near the front entrance. Several of these winged mini sprints will be present on a Wednesday evening soon to display their speed on the track during an intermission. Round two of speedway cycle racing at Industry will have free posters available for the first 1,000 spectators. Racing begins each Wednesday shortly before 7:00 pm. The indoor track at The Grand Arena has open sides and is situated on a hillside overlooking the scenic East San Gabriel Valley and the San Gabriel Mountains.