Saturday, March 9, 2019

Dylan Zampa Strikes Speed Fest Gold With $5,000 Pro Late Model Win At Madera

Via Madera Speedway Media

MADERA, CALIFORNIA (March 9, 2019) – 14 year-old Dylan Zampa of Napa, CA made his Nut Up Pro Late Model debut on Saturday night and promptly scored the biggest win of his career, topping his 18 year-old brother for the $5,000 Speed Fest at Madera Speedway. The pair went side-by-side over a dramatic final ten laps for MAVTV cameras before wet weather ended the event prematurely. Tanner Reif scored a shortened opener for the 51FIFTY Jr. Late Models that attracted 20 drivers ages 10-16 years old as well. Both the Mini Cups vs. Bandoleros and Modified Super Toyotas were unable to run their features.

A grinding crash for the lead between Carlos Vieira and Blaine Rocha on lap 39 opened the door wide-open for the Zampa battle. Fast-time qualifier Vieira and Rocha slid off of turn four with Rocha spinning across the track into the inside wall with significant damage. Vieira drove away from the crash but with portions of Rocha’s nose piece lodged into his car. He was relegated to the rear for having it removed by officials.

Rocha had led all the way after starting outside Orange Show champion Parker Malone on the front row of the 26 car feature. More than 30 cars attempted to qualify, with the field narrowed by a b-main earlier in the afternoon.

Dylan Zampa, the runner-up in the 2018 51FIFTY Jr. Late Models, slowly negotiated his way to second after starting sixth. The first caution flew on lap 18 for a spin. The caution flew again on lap 21 for Ryan Hart spinning and dropping fluid in turn one. Rocha picked the inside line against Zampa, pinning him into the dry sweep at the top of the first corner.

Through a series of mid-race cautions, Rocha continually maintained the lead over the rookie. A significant crash slowed the festivities when 2007 Altamont champion Ryan Philpott hit the turn one gate head on. He was uninjured and racing resumed after a brief red flag for clean up.

Zampa spun his tires on a lap 36 restart, which allowed the tenth starting Vieira to shoot the gap up into second. Vieira immediately clamped down on Rocha. Two laps later they slid through turn four before Rocha was hooked and hit the inside wall backwards.

The incident thrust Dylan Zampa into the lead, picking the inside against Logan Zampa. They staged a side-by-side battle over the next 10 laps with multiple lead changes. Logan led lap 39, before Dylan led lap 40. Logan edged forward for lap 41 but Dylan managed to lead until lap 45. Logan swung wide in turn four and Dylan danced to a one car length advantage up to lap 49.

Dylan’s advantage was nullified by a caution for Malone spinning out of turn four. The race never restarted as a heavy sprinkle saw officials count caution laps to carry the race to lap 56 just past halfway. The halfway break began before the sprinkle turned into persistent rain showers to end the evening. Dylan Zampa hauled in his $5,000 Speed Fest victory with 2018 Short Track Shootout $10,000 winner Logan Zampa in second.

2018 Madera Late Model champion Jason Aguirre was third over two-time champion Buddy Shepherd and 13th starting Ross Strmiska. Vieira ranked 14th in the rundown in a slight hit to his 2019 championship hopes.

13 year-old Tanner Reif of Las Vegas won his second career 51FIFTY Energy Drink Jr. Late Model Series race with a late race maneuver to take the shortened victory. 20 drivers ages 10-16 years old took the green flag for MAVTV-televised action.

12 year-old Cody Kiemele from Riverside swept around Jay Juleson to lead lap one. The caution flew immediately for a brief spin in turn three. Juleson looked pinned to the outside on the restart with a line of strong cars attempting to overhaul him including Bakersfield’s Seth Wise. A caution on lap six for a stalled car gave Juelson a break from the battling.

Madera’s Joey Iest rocketed from fourth to second on the restart when Juleson was slow to get away. Iest tucked under Kiemele before Kiemele spun to surrender the lead and bring out the caution.

Iest took over the point with Tyler Reif advancing to second after starting sixth. Iest and Reif built up a five car length lead over the pack but then Reif suffered a solo spin in turn three. The pack of mostly rookie drivers all managed to avoid Reif’s stalled car.

Tanner Reif used these restarts to charge past both Wise and Juleson to get up into second. His brother spun again on lap 25 which allowed Tanner an opening to challenge Iest. Iest held off this attempt that included Reif sliding sideways off of turn four and nearly going around. He saved it and then was saved by a caution period. This next restart was Iest’s undoing with Reif taking the lead on lap 30.

A caution on lap 32 for Tyler Reif having another unfortunate spin set up the final restart of the event. Tanner Reif motored away from Joey Iest for a .187 second advantage with Wise, Kabe McClenny, and Kayla Eshleman the top-five. The lap 41 checkered flag was intended to be the halfway break, but the race never restarted due to weather.

The MAVTV-televised Nut Up Pro Late Models and 51FIFTY Energy Drink Jr. Late Models return on April 6th. Next up for Madera Speedway is Saturday night’s debut of the MAVTV-televised California Challenge Cup for steel bodied stock cars along with the new Madera Midget Series.

For more information about Madera Racing on MAVTV please visit or For more information on Nut Up Industries please visit and for more information about 51FIFTY Energy Drink visit

Madera Speedway is presented by major partners Nut Up Industries, 51FIFTY Energy Drink, iPull-uPull, and Color Fast Industries. Contingency sponsors include Five Star Bodies, Maita Motorsports, McAllister Precision Marketing, H&S Body Works, Hoosier Tires, and StopTech Brakes.

Madera Racing on MAVTV airs Thursdays every week. The show airs at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. PST and is also available on the Lucas Oil Racing TV app. 2018 episodes will continue airing until the late spring, when 2019 episodes will hit the airwaves.