AMA Speedway National Championship Series kicks off on June 7
May 02, 2014
AMA Speedway contests features some of the closest and action-packed racing on two wheels, and in 2014 will highlight a full slate of national-caliber competition by seasoned pros and tomorrow's stars.
The country's best will showcase their talents in the AMA National Championship Series, which kicks off June 7 at Costa Mesa Speedway in Orange County, Calif. This year's competition calendar also includes the AMA Long Track National Championship, the Under-21 National Championship and the Youth National Championship.
"Without a doubt, speedway is one of the most exciting motorsports on the planet," said AMA Track Racing Manager Ken Saillant. "With U.S. talent reaching world-class levels, we're seeing even closer and faster championship battles each year. Add in the unpredictability of tight, circle-track sprint racing and you never know who might climb the podium on any given night."
Following the June 7 opener, the AMA Speedway National Championship Series heads to Ventura Raceway in Ventura, Calif., on June 28; City of Industry, Calif., on Aug. 9; then Gold Country Fairgrounds on Sept. 19.
Brad Oxley from Costa Mesa Speedway said he is looking forward to hosting national championship racing.
"Costa Mesa Speedway is thrilled to be included in the 2014 AMA Speedway National Championship Series," Oxley said. "I want to offer a big thanks to our fellow national championship series promoters, and Bill Cumbow and the entire AMA staff for their support. We anticipate the start of the series with a renewed sense of optimism and co-operation."
Added Steve Evans of Ventura Raceway: "The 2014 series is really breaking ground for the sport of Speedway in America. Last year we had three rounds all at different venues, but we were lacking some of the bigger, more-established tracks. Now with the Big Two in Southern California -- Costa Mesa and Industry Hills -- joining series staple Auburn and the fabulous seaside track at Ventura, we are growing to four rounds. I am excited to be involved and co-promoting the round at Ventura on June 28, as well as the standalone Long Track National on July 19 at Perris Auto Speedway. This is a great year to be involved in AMA Speedway."
Longtime AMA Speedway promoter Dave Joiner of Fast Fridays Motorcycle Speedway said he is thrilled that new promoters and venues are joining the series.
"We look forward to the expansion to the AMA National Championship Series, and we welcome Costa Mesa Speedway into the strongest series ever," Joiner said. "The 2014 season will be the best ever, and thanks to the AMA for the hard work making this happen. This will make for a great summer for riders and organizers alike. Good luck to everybody involved!"
Industry Racing is a new venue on the AMA Speedway National Championship Series calendar.
"All of us at Industry Racing are really happy about Costa Mesa Speedway coming on board and hosting a round of the 2014 AMA Speedway National Championship," said Industry Racing Race Track Director Kelly Inman. "International Speedway, as well as Costa Mesa, is iconic and rich in history in American speedway, and I'm always excited to work with them. I have had a lot of very positive meetings with AMA over the last couple years, along with some very successful AMA-sanctioned races, and I think this is yet another positive step in building the future of speedway in the United States."
The national series will feature 14 permanent riders, with two wildcard spots up for grabs at each round. Selection of eight of the 14 permanent riders is based on 2013 final standings. The pre-selected riders are Billy Janniro, Billy Hamill, Gino Manzares, Max Ruml, Aaron Fox, Charlie Venagas, Eddie Castro and Bryan Yarrow. The other spots will be determined by the AMA and the AMA Speedway Advisory Committee prior to the first round.
In addition to the AMA Speedway National Championship Series, three additional national championship events in 2014 will showcase America's amateur and sportsman competition.
On July 19, the Perris Auto Speedway in Perris, Calif., will host the AMA Long Track National Championship. The Youth National Championships will be Aug. 15 at Fast Fridays Motorcycle Speedway in Auburn, Calif. The AMA Under-21 National Championship will be Aug. 22, also in Auburn.
New for 2014 is an AMA Speedway Racing License, available to all competitors in AMA Speedway competition this season. Designed to hang on a lanyard, the license will include a rider's photo, division and other competition-related information. There is no additional cost for the license from the AMA.
In addition to U.S. national competition, the AMA manages the U.S. team at the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme Speedway World Cup. The 2014 FIM Speedway World Cup finale will be Aug. 2 in Bydgoszcz, Poland.
AMA Speedway competition has a long and storied history dating back to the mid-1920s. One of the sport's early stars was America's first world champion: AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer Jack Milne, who won the 1937 Individual Speedway Championship in London. Today, speedway is known for its fast action and tight racing. A meet features numerous heats of four riders each, power-sliding single-speed bikes with no brakes counter-clockwise around a dirt oval.
For more information about AMA-sanctioned speedway competition, see www.americanmotorcyclist.com.