Race #8

Dan Plaskett in his racing days

Today’s was our Daniel J. Plaskett memorial race and, coupled with the fact that it was held one week prior to the Gold Cup Qualified, the turnout was great with 148 riders entered in the points classes and another 21 in Opens bringing the total to 169 entries in 45 motos.
Dan Plaskett was the youngest son of Rog and Donna Plaskett who lost a long battle with a very rare genetic disease called Adrenomyloneuropathy or “AMN”. Dan was only 35 when he succumbed to this devastating illness. From the proceeds of today’s race including some donations, over $300 will be donated to the United Leukodystrophy Foundation who does research on AMN in hopes of developing treatment and a cure.

Matt Rowe and the Daniel J. Plaskett Memorial Trophy

For the last seven seasons, The Litchfield county BMX Group Inc., has held this event and has presented an award to a rider in Dan’s memory. This award is chosen by Rog Plaskett and this year he chose Matt Rowe. Matt was humbled and visibly moved when he came up to the tower to receive the award. In the coming weeks Matt's name will be added to the section of our web site that covers this award.

Before we started racing the usual presentation was made of our Rider-Of-The-Week award. Today’s it was given to Brody Kesl for his efforts on Olympic Night last Thursday. This 7 year old said that Dave Woodruff was his favorite rider. There was also a rider named for last Sunday’s race, but he was not here today. I’m going to hold back his name until we are able to present him his trophy in person.
There were just 3 striders here today and the two 3-year olds, Ryder Champagne and Kristopher Meinel along with 2 year old Cole Lyman, put on a pretty good display of pedaless mayhem.


In 11-12 action there were four riders battling for only 3 spots in the main event. One 6-year old, Hayley again had no class and was put in with threes mush older riders and failed to qualify. Hayley accepts this situation each week and loves just being out there. The experience she is gaining will be very beneficial as she gets a little older. In this main event it was really a two rider shootout between the two 11 year olds. Anislee Bardunias and Marissa Lyman were simply awesome and very evenly matched. Mary Sloan, only 9 years old, would finish third today but sure had a great view of the close racing action in front of her. Marissa held off Anislee but it was a hard fought close quarter’s event all the way around.

In 21-30 action it was a Total Points race and another one that featured very close racing. Overhauls Emily Fullerton would win round one with the Artoli Dodge sponsored Team Edge rider Maya Brown second and Gina Layman third. Round tow saw Maya on top with Emily second in this see-saw battle. The tie-breaking third round went to Maya with Emily second and Gina third overall for the day.

It was a little different in the 8-year old class but it also was a Total Points race. Hostile’s Austin Perillo nailed down a perfect with wins in all three rounds. Nash Byrne, sporting the Powers Bike Shop colors was second with Ryder Richardson third for Warped BMX.

The 10 year old class was like the Marshalls and the posse’ as this three rider shootout featured by Max and Alex Marshall leading the way all the way to the finish line in all three rounds in this Total Points race. Joe Laurie would finish third.

In 12 year old action it would be Cole Hobart, flying the HVRT (Hudson Valley Rolling Thunder) flag eliminated after the qualifying rounds of motos. Warped BMX Teams RJ Reale got the job done with a fantastic move in the final turn. Hostiles Justin Perillo second and Peter Laurie (Eagle Eye Quads) third.

Cruiser racing continues with the 13 year old Total Points class and it was “Wild Cherry” Kyle Kuehn, who rides for the Stylin National Team, getting the best of the other two riders in all three rounds. Mason Blackburn (Warped BMX) was second with Kyle Lyman, also riding for Warped BMX third.

“The Natural” Baley Levine made it look easy in the 3-rider 14 year old class with three wins. Mason Vansteenbergen, yet another rider form Warped BMX was second and JT Kelleher was third.

The 21-25 class was a mixed bag of riders ranging from 15 to 27 years old. Joe Broderick, the oldest in the 4-rider group missed the cut. 15 year old “Thundermidget” Alex Kuehn was stylin and won the main event. Ryan Bogli (C-Yaa Frames) was second and third went to Steve Healy for Overhaul.

The 31-35 group saw Derek Thibideau miss transferring into today’s main. “The Ludacliff” Cliff Benoit put his Overhaul colors on the top podium spot with an impressive win today. Team Edge’s Tim Brown was second while the third spot went to “Stone-Cold” Steve Scibelli also an Overhaul rider.

The final Cruiser class was the 46-50 gang of four. 58 year old Butch Feitel, on the comeback trail missed the cut today. John Buttwell, the man in black, got the job done today as he stayed ahead of Rick Marceau (Overhaul) who was making his once a year annual pilgrimage to Foothills. Third went to Hostile’s Manny Perillo after he popped his chain and had to walk his machine off.


In 5 and under action 4-year old Savannah Grover (Kid Dynamite New England) missed the cut today in only her first time here on a pedal bike. “Smilin” Rylan Spence was second across the stripe while third place went to Danny Talbot.

Our rider of the week form last week, proved what a difference a week can make as Brody Kesl missed the cut today in the 7 year old division. DDR’s Jax Gietek captured the win today in an impressive effort. Paxton Wells and Cayden Melillo (Family Pride) were second and third.
The 100 year old class saw the only 9 year old in the mix get eliminated in the qualifying motos. Mike Arnold gave it a good try but today was simply not his day. In the main it was Gold-cup #1 Mason Smerda showing some great Novice skill and captured today’s win. Derek Linnick (CT Glass LLC)was second and Zack Adams was third.

The 11 year old group was foru riders strong and, after the qualifying rounds, “Mad” Maddy Philbrink was the rider missing the transfer into the 3-rider main event. Tyler Bouteiller was today’s top 11 year old with a great win. Peyton Pulaski looked strong and earned a solid second while third went to Lucas Holda in a closely contested main event.

The 13 year old gang was a Total Points event and it was Tyler Farwell, making his first ever trip to foothills a good one with a win. Noah Toney was second while T.R.A.C.K.’s Emily Aldo finished third.

The last Novice class was the 46 & Over legion of Doom. Matt Bartolo won round one of this Total Points race. Chris Poirier won round two. Poirier held on for round three and went home with the title today. Bartolo was second while Erica Bacchiocchi was third.


Devon Poirier gave a great try today but could not find a way around Max Meinel to make the main event. Jaxson Grover looked good but wrecked in turn one taking himself out of contention. Ryder Richardson (Team Warped), traveled all the way from Vermont and would go home with a nice win. Second went to Max Meinel (T.R.A.C.K.) while Jax Grove finished third after he got up and rode to the finish line.

In the 7 year old class, it was Guy Julian who was the one rider missing the cut. Sawyer Spence made it two Foothills wins in a row with a great effort today for Team Edge. “Lemon-Drop” Evan Sauer also looked good and earned a second place finish while third went to Ollie Cleary.
Family Prides Wes Hamel nailed the 3-rider 9 year old class as he cruised to victory in all three motos. Dax Smerda (Racer Army-Racer Concepts) was second. Third place went to Landon Hansen.

It was another Total Points race for the 11 year olds and this time it was “The Undertaker” Jonah Graves putting the nail in the coffin with three wins today. Cole Hobart and Kevin Kelleher were second and third.

The 13 year old class saw Cayden Hobart (HVRT) the rider eliminated in the motos. “Loose Change” Jake Nichols (Family Pride) earned the win. Tyler Kendig (C-Yaa Frames) was second while the third spot went to Shamus Crane for Family Pride racing.

In 14 year old action it was Jorn Layman the rider who was the most impressive today as he scored a nice win in a 5-rider class. The second spot went to Dillon O’Brian which was also impressive as he was the only Novice in this mix and earns Intermediate points. Third went to Tom Lucchesi.

It was Total Points time for the 17-18 group and Dan Heideger made it look easy as he aced a “perfect”. Chris Aldo stayed in from of Ethan Escobar for the second spot.

In 28-35 action John Bacchiocchi would win the first and third round in this Total Points event giving him the overall win. Steve Healey (Overhaul) was second while Tom Healey (Overhaul) was third.


The 11 year old class was a repeat of the Girls Cruiser class as Marissa Lyman (Warped BMX),reining Track Champion, and Anislee Bardunias (Hostile) really went at it again with 9 year old Mary Sloan in tow. Marissa won round one while Anislee grabbed round two. Marissa used a great pass to win the final round for the overall win. Anislee was second and Mary was third.

Maya Brown (Team Edge) won the 3-rider 17-20 woman’s class with three impressive moto wins. Emily Fullerton (Overhaul) was second while Alexis Nevins (Busted Knuckles Bike Shop) was third. Alexis lives in Tennessee and it was great to see her here.


It was Total Points action for the 7 year old gang and it was the same order of finish in all three rounds. Justin Donahue (Gold-Cup #1) was today’s winner. Nash Byrne (Power’s Bike Shop) was second and Natalie Kent finished third.

The 9 year old class was 5 riders strong with two of them being 8 year olds. One of the 8 year olds, Jayden Kent, was the rider eliminated in the motos. Family Pride’s star rider, Cole Melillo was on fire and could not be beaten today. Hunter MacCracken (Factory Yess Northeast) was second while the third sport went to Alex Marshall.

The largest group of the day was the 10 year old Expert class. Shawn Biello (Ramp Farm Racing) missed the cut today. The main event saw the top three riders wreck in the first turn which took out Max Marshall, Ryan Kendig and Jayden Rego. All would eventually get up and finish the race. Will Ross was today’s champ with Noah Anderson second and Joe Laurie third.

In 11 year old competition it was Ryder Vansteenbergen missing the cut today. Trevor Cooper (Ramp Farm Racing) was the top gun today. Shane Johnson (C-Yaa Frames) was second and RJ Reale (Warped BMX) was third.

Moto #32 was the 12 year old class and, after some classic battles in the motos, Pete Laurie was the odd man out. Anthony Bartolo, sporting the old Custom Cycles colors, got the job done with a win. Aidan Biello (Ramp Farm) earned the second spot while third went to Justin Perillo (Hostile).

The 13 year old class was a five rider group and it was some pretty evenly matched riders in the mix. Mason Blackburn (Warped BMX) grabbed the top spot. His team-mate Kyle Lyman kept the pressure on him for a solid second place finish. The third sport went to Connor Mannion (C-Yaa Frames).

Total Points was the situation for the 14 year old gang of three. “Butter” Hunter Zeiner (Family Pride) was the top dog yet again today. Mason Vansteenbergen (Team Edge) was second and JT Kelleher was third.

Alex Kuehn (Stylin Racing) and Jagur Layman traded moto wins in the 15 Expert Total Points race forcing the outcome to be decided in the third round. Jagur had the lead most of the final lap but “Thundermidget” was all over him. Up the back stretch Alex went to the outside. As they entered turn four, it looked form the tower like Jagur could have forced Alex up on the berm but decided to stay low. He stayed maybe two low and, on the lower flat portion of the turn he slid out allowing Alex to sprint to the finish line uncontested. “Jumpin” jerry Taylor inherited the second sport while Jagur eventually walked it off for third.

Lew Cianfarani was the rider eliminated in the 17-18 class as this one was loaded with Hot-rods. In the main event it was Anthony Lucchesi earning the victory. Dean “The Machine” (Evolution X) finished a fairly close second while Matte Rowe (Evolution X) was third.

The craziest class of the day had to be the 28-35 Expert class. The second round started the craziness as Danielle Jolicoeur and Charlie Grover nearly locked handlebars on the third straight but somehow managed to avoid a horrific crash. Both would eventually qualify. “Stone-Cold” Steve Scibelli (Overhaul) would not. In the main event Jeffery Albert came out of turn three in the third spot but somehow weaved through traffic and literally threaded the needle getting to the top spot and hung on for the win. Charlie Grover (Kid Dynamite) was second with the third spot going to Chris Morris.

Charlie Grover and Danielle Jolicoeur
Nearly Locked Handlebars
The Look of Fear in the Eyes of These Two

Rick Marceau )Overhaul) with now Jill Botchler to race, still managed a nice win in the 46 & Over Expert 3-riider shootout by winning all three rounds. Manny Perillo (Hostile) was second while Lisa Minion (C-Yaa Frames) was third.

In Open action it was Justin Donahue winning 7-8; Cole Melillo winning 9-10; Shane Johnson winning 11-12; Gordon Johnson winning 13-14; Ethan Escobar winning 26-30 and Tim Brown winning 31 & over.

Thanks so much for coming out today. It was great to see a big crowd and was reminiscent of days past at Foothills. See you all at the Gold Cup next Sunday.

Complete finish report