Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Havasu 95 Speedway To Present "Maniacs On Wheels" This Saturday

By Dave Grayson

Observing their long time tradition of having fun with their racing shows, the Havasu 95 Speedway will be presenting "Maniacs On Wheels" this Saturday afternoon. The event is the latest round of their 2015-2016 Winter Racing Series. The spectator gates will open at 12pm with the racing receiving the green flag at 2pm. The racing is being sponsored by the Apothecary Shop and Tri-Tech Auto.

Highlighting the on track action will be the Late Models and the Havasu Wiring Outlaw Karts. Both of these divisions will be running their final race of the winter season meaning champions will be crowned on Saturday. Also pegging the racing fun meter will be the Get It In Gear Street Stocks, the Sam Nichols Electric Factory Stocks and the Maintenance Solution Team Factory Stocks.

The Late Model championship standings has Trevor Huddleston on top of the rankings with five top five finishes including three consecutive main event wins. Despite that high level of consistency, the conclusion of this championship run is still too close to call going into the final race. Jeff Peterson, with a feature win and five top five finishes, is only eight points away from first. If for some reason Huddleston and Peterson find themselves on the receiving end of bad racing luck this Saturday, speedway veteran, and former track champion, Bobby Keirns, with five consecutive top five finishes, is sitting in third 16 points away from the leader and eight points away from the second position.

It's safe to assume that driver Adam Hommerding will be crowned the Havasu Wiring Outlaw Karts champion this Saturday. Hommerding has seven features wins, including four in a row, along with ten top five finishes. That adds up to 486 championship points along with a lead of 32 points ahead of Korbin Mitchell who has scored a feature win, 8 top five and two top ten finishes. In fact, the real points battle in this division may turn out to be who collects the bragging rights of finishing second in the final standings. Brody Wake, with ten top fives, holds down third going into Saturday's race and is only six points away from Mitchell.

The one championship battle that has all Havasu 95 Speedway fans talking involves the Get It In Gear Street Stocks. Series hot shoe Gavin Bucy won the first six main event features in a row. One would believe that impressive effort would be more than enough to guarantee him the championship.

It didn't turn out that way. That's because Bobby Keirns ran up a string of six consecutive second place finishes and, with only two championship points separating first and second, that kept him close to Bucy in the standings. Then, on the evenings of February 6th and 20th, Keirns held a reunion with the speedway's victory lane and shaved eight points off of Bucy's lead.

The two drivers will be going into Saturday afternoon's event only four points apart. After Saturday, they will square off against each other during twin main events on April 2nd to settle a championship battle that could go down to the final laps of the final race.

The always fun Sam Nichols Electric Factory Stocks, with their racing is rubbing format, will play a big part in Saturday's racing entertainment as they always do. Brent Delay with his five wins, six top fives and one top ten holds down the top position in the points standings. However, he's only ten points ahead of Jose Guevara who has a feature win along with six top fives and a top ten. Feature winner Jeff Prieur, along with his seven top five finishes, is ranked third and is 16 points away from first and six points away from second. The series has four races remaining on their schedule and will crown their champion on the night of April 16th.

The Maintenance Solution Team Factory Stock championship standings has EWWWWEEEE Racing in the lead with 238 points based on two, consecutive, feature wins and five top five finishes. However, this championship race is also too close to call. Team Take and Bake, with a matching two wins and five top fives, is ranked second only four points out of first. Not to be overlooked here is the presence of the Asphalt Junkies whose five, consecutive, top five finishes has them third in the rankings just eight points away from the leader and four points away from the runner up position. The division has two races left on their schedule and will crown their champion on the night of April 2nd.

On Apothecary Shop/Tri-Tech Auto race day the spectator gates will open at 12pm. General admission tickets, age 17 plus, are $12 and $10 for seniors, military personnel and the handicapped. Tickets for kids, age six to 16, are $12 with kids five and under admitted free when accompanied by a paid adult. Additionally, Lake Havasu Unified School District students can receive a one dollar discount on their tickets by presenting their school IDs at the ticket gate. The speedway also offers a budget friendly family pack that admits two adults and two kids for $25. Also for $25, fans can enjoy the special amenities of the speedway's VIP Lounge featuring the best seats in the house. Advance tickets can be purchased from Peggy Gerchman at Peggy's Sunrise Café located at 1584 Country Shire Avenue.

For out of town race teams and fans, the Quality Inn and Suites is the official motel of the Havasu 95 Speedway. Located at 271 South Lake Havasu Avenue, they offer beautiful and spacious rooms at very affordable rates. Call 928 855 1111 for reservations which can also be made online.

For more information regarding the speedway winter racing season dial up their website, www.havasu95speedway.com or visit their Facebook page.

Left Coast Race Scene: Good Times Quarter Midget Racing Association To Launch Season Opener This Weekend

By Dave Grayson

It's well known that the Madera County Fairgrounds has been the long time home of the Madera Speedway, the fastest one third mile paved oval in the west. However located behind the front stretch of the main speedway is a small, tightly wound, paved oval that measures 1/20th of a mile. This track is the home of the Good Times Quarter Midget Racing Association. Officially sanctioned by Region 11 of the Quarter Midget Racing of America, this program is specifically designed to develop the driving talent of boys and girls age five to 16. It's a program that works very well.

Following a special event, held in Vallejo-CA last month, the association will be presenting their official 2016 season opener in Madera on March 4th and 5th when they present the Joe Galante Memorial. Friday night is an open practice session for all divisions that will run from 4 to 8pm. Saturday race day begins with practice at 930am followed by qualifying and main events for the association's seven racing classes.

According to their website, "the purpose of this organization is to create and maintain a clean, safe, healthy sport which may be enjoyed by fathers, sons, mothers and daughters in relationship with better sportsmanship. (it's also) to acquaint the younger generation with the handling of mechanical devices (as well as) coordination, alertness and ability to handle motor driven vehicles. (Also we want) to impress upon the younger generation the idea of fairness, generosity and sense of responsibility without envy to others."

The positive aspects of this program is overwhelming both on and off the track. Not only is this association developing future racing talent, they also appear to be appear to be developing future, responsible, young adults all within the element of family. By the way, the racing is also quite entertaining. For more information regarding the Good Times Quarter Midget Racing Association you can contact Publicity Director Kim Avedisian at 559-313-3982.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

2016 Winter Showdown Exceeds Expectations

By Matthew J. Sullivan

The Spears SRL Southwest Tour Series' Winter Showdown at Bakersfield, California's Kern County Raceway Park proved to be an exciting event that came down to the checkered flag. Georgia super late model ace, Bubba Pollard held off a late charge by Washington's, Parker Stephens to take the win. Pollard had also been the victor in the inaugural running of the event in 2016. Pollard victory gave him the $30,000 winner's purse as well as an additional $10,000 bonus that was provided by Coors Light and Speed51.com

The big money Showdown has provided a huge boost for everyone interested in super late model racing on the west coast. While the region has a rich history of prestigious events, it has been several years since a race has managed to attract the type of talent that the Winter Showdown has. Events such as the Copper World Classic at Phoenix International Raceway, the Rose Classic at All-American Speedway and the spring and fall open competition races at Shasta Speedway attracted drivers from all over the country.

Over the years, things changed. The Copper World Classic open race became a NASCAR Southwest Tour Series event and the event sadly came to a demise in the mid-00s. The Rose Classic drew top talent but it faded into the ether. The spring Nor-Cal 150 and fall Western 150 open comp races at Shasta Speedway went the way of the dodo.

In a very short time, the Winter Showdown has become one of the top super late model events in the entire country. In addition to Pollard, several other drivers drove across the country to try to win the race including Cole Anderson, Dalton Sargeant, Preston Peltier, Steven Wallace and Todd Gilliland. 38 cars started the 250-lap event which had a total of 50 pre-entries.

The Winter Showdown has proved to be a draw for the best super late model racers in the United States and the exciting thing is that the event has the potential to be bigger and better next year and well into the future. The popular Lucas Oil Modified Series joined the schedule on Saturday night and provided an exciting race. The possibility of adding another series to the Winter Showdown such as the Pacific Challenge Series or adding a big money Legends event would only add to the event's attraction for west coast race fans.

It is almost certain that officials with the SRL and Kern County Raceway Park are planning on how to make the 2017 running of the Winter Showdown bigger and better. Race fans better make certain to not miss out next year.