This week was our annual Bob Warnicke Scholarship Race. With Double District points up for grabs, there were plenty of out of state point’s chasers in the house in spite of a $20.00 USABMX mandated entry fee. There were 41 entries from Massachusetts, 11 from Rhode Island, 14 from New York and yet another 1 from Vermont. Add our own Connecticut entries and we had a great turnout of 139 separate entries without counting the 6 Strider riders and the 33 riders who took advantage of our free Opens.
Before we started racing, we named our two Riders of the Week from the first two weeks. Week #1 it was 11 year old Joziah Gonzalez. He named Noah Andersen as his favorite rider. Noah was responsible for getting this Bristol rider involved with BMX. Since week #1 Joziah has moved up to the Intermediate class. Congrats!
For week #2 we named Elizabeth Von Wahlde, from Fairfield, as our Rider of the Week. She came up to the announcer’s tower with her dad, brother and favorite rider, Libby Hile. She spoke on how the two of them had met at the track in Trumbull and became good friends.
Our racing started about 25 minutes late due to a re-post of motos but it was a beautiful day for racing and no one seemed to mind the slight delay.
We started with the striders and broke them into three groups. First up were the 4 year olds and Willow Hicks and Moly Hile put their soles to the track with Willow crossing the stripe first.
The 3 year old class saw Ben Von Wahlde finish ahead of Payton Bardunias and “Hurricane” Haley Blackburn.
In the 2 year old division, Jaxson Grover and Brandi Wilkinson were the two competitors with Jaxson showing the way. Brandi, although very reluctant to compete, rode the entire strider portion of the track in her final time out.
In the Open classes our winners were Matt Meagher in the 6 & under Mixed Open; Kyle McDonald in the 7-8 Mixed Open; Avery Badendyck in the 11-12 Mixed Open; Jack Mulligan in the 15-16 Mixed Open, Charles Grover in the 31 & Over Mixed Open; Matt Webb in the 11-12 Open; Anthony Lucchesi in the 15-16 Open and Rick Marceau in the 31 & Over Open.
Our first “class” of the 43 total motos was for the 26-30 Cruisers. Gina Layman easily outraced Rebecca Marchildon and Amanda Orlandi who finished second and third. Andrea Lucchesi missed making the starting grid for the main event.
In 7 & under Cruiser action Mason Bruns was the hard luck rider who missed the main event. Joe Santilli was first to qualify and first to cross the finish line in the main event. Mason Jacquier was second with Collin Bourque third.
The first of the “Total Points” classes was the 9 year old Cruisers. Sam DeGrange aced the first “perfect” of the day with wins in all three rounds. Jaden Asklar and Zach Tuohy settled into the second and third spots.
More “Total Points” in the 15 cruiser group with Ryan Ellefsen acing his perfect score. “The Beast” Dave Albert battled Matt Higgs for the second spot which eventually went to Dave.
There were 5 riders battling in the 36-40 Cruiser class. Cliff Benoit just missed qualifying for the main. Chris Therriault looks like he’s learned to turn right in the second turn as he missed the fences this week and went on to win the main event. Ryan Bogli looked solid and finished second with the third spot going to Mike Von Wahlde.
It was a great battle for supremacy in the 41-45 Cruiser class with Jeff Badendyck and Fred Roy really going at it. Fred would hang on for the win with Jeff second while Rick Marceau looked satisfied staying behind these two guys and finished third. John Ouellete was forced to watch from the sidelines after missing the cut.
Moving on to the Novice classes the 5 & under class was crazy all day long. In the first round of motos three riders tangled on the back side of the first obstacle and went down in a tangle of bodies and bicycles. All would get up and be ok only to have two of those three tangle again on the third straight. When the dust cleared everyone was still in racable condition. Clive Moscuzza tried so hard but this 4 year old didn’t qualify for today’s main. In the main event Logan Cawley, running in the fourth spot down the front straight, lost control of his bike, went off the track at the bottom of the first big jump, stayed on his out of control bike as it sped across the infield section into the middle of the second straight just as the leaders were coming out of turn one. As the crowd gasped, Logan, still on his bike stopped right in the middle of the straight and somehow they all veered and sped by him on both sides. Aiden Grover was main event winner with Landon Hansen and Kayla Barker second and third. Logan's father recovered from his near heart attack quickly.
It was a full gate of 8 riders in the 6 year Novice class and Leithen McMillan, despite a valiant effort, just missed qualifying for the main. This was Leithen’s first trip to Foothills and we hope this Weston Ct. rider comes back again soon. The 7 rider main event was the largest of the day and it always amazes me how naming a racer Rider of the Week improves that riders skill and confidence. As if right on cue, Elizabeth Von Wahlde, after being named ROTW for her efforts last week, was first to qualify from the first round and went on to win the main event. Dan Smith was a very solid second while the third spot went to Mary Sloan.
It was also a great turnout in the 7 year old Novice class with 7 riders going for the 6 positions in the main event. Owen Annonson and Noah Andersen were the first two riders to qualify and it looked like they would be the two battling for the main event win. In the main Noah would crash leaving Owen unchallenged for the win. Andrew Beach was our second place finisher with Libby Hile sliding into the third spot. Lyra Moscuzza put in a great qualifying effort but just missed.
Another 7 riders were in the house in the 8 year old Novice class. Vinny Orlandi was the odd rider out in the 6 rider main event. Aidan Drenen was impressive in his first visit here as this Massachusetts rider won the main event. Rich Castaldi, sponsored weekly by his grandparents Ted and Nancy, enjoyed a nice second place finish. The third spot went to Anislee Bardunias.
After the three previous classes featuring big numbers, only 3 riders were here for some 9 year old Novice action. “Total Points” racing for these three and it was Brooke Klemonski doing the winning deed three times in a row. Jana Wilkinson was second all day with Erin Myers third in this Girl-Power class.
Kirsten McDonald, despite a nice try, failed to qualify to the 3 rider 11 year old Novice main event. Alex Orlov looked great and nailed down the win, Tim Robinson was second with the third spot going to Jack Van horn.
In 6 year old Intermediate action it was hopefully a lessoned learned for one rider. With 5 riders going for the 4 available main event starting positions, it would come down to the third round and final 3 riders battling for the remaining two spots. Jack Santilli made in across the stripe first in round three. Chris Strandberg was well ahead of Austin Perillo for the last spot as they came out of the final turn. Chris sat down and hit the cruise control button thinking he had it made. Perillo stayed on the jammie and his front wheel just reached the finish line before Chris’s did. Chris was out and Austin was in. It had to be a heartbreaking ride home in the Strandberg vehicle. Matt Meagher nailed the main event win. Dan Myers enjoyed a solid second place finish with Jack Santilli third.
In 7 year old Intermediate action there were 4 riders in the house. It would be the third round before Logan Corrales would make the cut but then this Vermont rider went on to bring the first place award back to the green mountain state. Shawn Biello was second while Nate Giroux was third. Koleton Kolodzeig just missed qualifying.
It was yet another heartbreaking day for “Hot Rod” Johnny Tomboly in the 8 year old Intermediate class as he just missed the cut in a near photo finish for the last qualifying spot. Johnny is definitely paying his dues in the Intermediate class and, if he stays with this, he will be just as successful as he was in the Novice class. Kyle McDonnell was today’s winner with Riley Hile second and Zach Tuohy third.
It was a big crowd in the 9 year old Intermediate class with 7 riders going for some Bob Warnicke glory. Pierce Curtis has been battling a virus for a few weeks now and is still showing the effects. Pierce missed the main event cut but looks to be getting back to the “Fierce Pierce” that we know and love. Aidan Biello outpowered everyone in the main after being the third qualifier to transfer in. Jaden Asklar was second and Dylan Barker (Brian Neff P.E.) was third.
IN 11 year old Intermediate competition it was Jorn Layman first to qualify and first across the stripe in the main event. He was able to hold off J.T. Kelleher who put on a great challenge. Third went to Joziah Gonzalez in his first ride as an Intermediate here at foothills.
In the 13 year old Intermediate grouping there were 4 riders going for 3 main event spots meaning one rider from each round would transfer. Sean Strate was first to qualify. Round 2 saw Ethan Escobar make the cut while it would be round three before Mike Strandberg would beat our Noah Klemonski for the last available spot in the main. While Mike would make the ride home a little more cheerful in the Strandberg vehicle as he won the main. Sean settled for second place while Ethan Escobar was third.
“Total Points’ racing for the 14 year old Intermediate class. Dean Zebian was on the top of his game today and he aced a “perfect” holding off Lewis Cianfarani and Mike Wilkinson.
In 15 year old Intermediate action it was a free ride to the main for Jack mulligan, Andrew Thibodeau and Corey Heath as Joel Collins never made it to the gate in the motos. Jack got the job done in the main with Corey a close second. Third went to Andrew.
In 28-35 Intermediate action it was “Total Points” racing with only 3 riders present. Charles Grover, whose helmet would look you right in the eye, won all three rounds of action. Jeff Orlandi was second with the third spot going to Angela Therriault.
In 46 & over Intermediate racing it was Neil Lafluer “Grizz” just missing the cut. Jason Gladstone, sitting out since round one, won the main with Kevin Marchildon second and Craig Begnoche third.
Kyly Milton, Avery Badendyck and Ashley Jasensky was the order of finish in the 14 year old Girls “Total Points” race. Kyly had no problem as she is 3 years older than the other two long-haired rockets.
The experts started off with the 7 year old division. When a rider like Collin Bourque puts in the effort that he did and still doesn’t make the main, you know that some of the best were here. Joe Santilli earned the big win with Mason Jacquier and Mason Bruns second and third.
It was more disappointment for the Strandberg family as Nick missed the cut in the 9 year old Expert class. Sam DeGrange was awesome and outraced Garret Cooper and Trevor Cooper who would settle for second and third.
In 11 year old expert action Matt Webb continued his undefeated run with another win in this “Total Points” event. Fin Milton, still feeling the effects of his injured knuckle, was right on Matt all day but finished second. Cameron Albaugh was third.
In 12 year old Expert racing it was classic “Total Points” racing with Ethen Russell-Ward winning round one and “Jumpin” Jerry Taylor winning round two. The show-down round three went to Jerry. Ethan finished second and today’s third place award went to Jagur layman who suffered a bike problem.
Alexander Poole would take no prisoners in the 13 year old Expert class. Waiting until the second round to transfer, he must have used the added track time to get it dialed in as he won today’s main in his first trip here. Tommy Gladstone was second with Dave Albert third.
A great turnout of 6 riders glory seeking in the 15 year old Expert group. Anthony Lucchesi transferred out early and was well rested for the main event battle. Jeremy Estrella put up a good effort and finished second behind the Kryptonite colors. Ethan Begnoche was third.
The “Mod-Squad” (16 year old Experts) were going for it in “Total Points” racing. Casey Tanner would hold off Chris Therriault for today’s win while Trevor Fox was third.
In 19-27 Expert action Josh Wedge easily won round one of “Total Points” racing and then sat out the rest of the day. This allowed Chris Pannullo to win the overall with Chris Pfeffer second.
The last class of the day was the 41-45 Expert class. It was maybe the most hotly contested class of the day. Kevin Sharpe, a rider who has a great history of racing here in the Northeast was in the house for the first time in years. Kevin is a former pro who has not raced in years. It was great to see a former AA pro. In this main it was Jeff Badendyck who would not be denied as he held off Garick Yanosky and Fred Roy for the win.
Remeber gang. there is no racing at Foothills next week. We wish you all a happy and safe Hoilday weekend.
Complete finish report