Showing posts with label PJ Pedroncelli. Show all posts
Showing posts with label PJ Pedroncelli. Show all posts

Monday, May 30, 2016

Herzog Among Big Winners On Armed Forces Tribute Night



Via Madera Speedway PR/Blakesley Sports media

MADERA, CALIFORNIA (May 30, 2016) – 13 year-old Austin Herzog solidified his position as one of the top young stock car drivers in the nation, with a thrilling win during Armed Forces Tribute Night Saturday night at Loanmart Madera Speedway. Herzog charged from the rear of the field of MAVTV 51FIFTY Jr. Late Models for drivers ages 10-16, making the decisive pass for the lead on lap 47 of the 50 lap feature. The win is Herzog's second in the series in three races so far.

Matt Erickson remained perfect on the season winning his third MAVTV-televised Open Late Model main and fifth overall for the year as well in the 100 lap contest.

Herzog set fast-time and sat on the pole over the 15 car turn out but had to restart at the rear after having a missing gas cap. While Herzog went to work from the back, it was Las Vegas' 12 year-old driver Dezel West leading the opening laps. West and 15 year-old Ryan Vargas of La Mirada, CA anchored the field with a gap back to third place Canadian Ben Silliker in a train of six cars for third.

Seth Holman and Jesse Burks had hard contact mid-pack that forced Holman to escape to the pits followed by Las Vegas' Kyle Keller spinning on the front stretch for a caution on lap 12. Kolby Berry and another Las Vegas driver Chris Trickle, nephew of Dick Trickle, came together to send both of those 15 year-olds to the back as well.

Herzog made some of the first outside passes in the history of the MAVTV-televised series on Saturday night. He made his way past round two winner Austin Edwards for fifth as the race reached the lap 25 break.

After a ten minute break on the front stretch, the action picked back up with Herzog clearing Jarrett Gilmer for fourth. Trickle continued his run through the field as well to get past Edwards. Silliker maintained third until he was passed by Herzog on lap 31 in turn three, and coming out of turn four Silliker banged doors with Gilmer. Gilmer was bumped back to sixth and Silliker to eighth in a tough break for the former Micro Sprint racers.

Vargas ran comfortably in second until both Herzog and Trickle got around him near the 35th lap of the race. Edwards took advantage to close in hard on Vargas for fourth. Edwards managed to get past Vargas to take the position a few laps later.

The action intensified up front as Herzog closed on West for the lead. The fans roared in approval as Herzog made a big cross-over maneuver to take the lead. The turn four pass on lap 46 was enough as Herzog went on for a .624 second win for his second of the season. Trickle, Edwards, Vargas, Gilmer, Silliker, Kolby Berry, and Idaho's Zachary Telford rounded out the lead lap finishers.

Matt Erickson led the final 73 laps of the two part Loanmart Open Late Model 100 to continue a perfect 5-0 season at Madera including three televised wins. Erickson wrestled the lead away from 15 year-old Logan Zampa on lap 27 and then fended off a strong challenge from 2015 runner-up Bryan Herzog at the conclusion of the tough race.

Glen Cook led from the green flag with Joey Licata on the outside front row. A caution for contact on lap two saw Erickson already up to second after starting fifth. Erickson slid around from the outside line on the restart to surrender positions to Licata and Zampa before the next caution as Thomas Suarez had rear end problems. Incoming third in points David Ross slowed with a right front problem in turn four on the successive restart in an incident that ultimately derailed his night, putting him many laps down. Erickson capitalized to take the lead from Cook on lap eight.

Zampa battled side-by-side with Cook for nine laps before finally clearing him and squaring up at Erickson. The top eight cars maintained a strong lead over the rest of the pack despite a lot of side-by-side racing. A lap 22 caution involving Loren Kutz and Ryan Hart set up the hard charge from Zampa where he took the lead from Erickson on lap 23. Ryan Philpott had a small spin in turn four that caused a few others to spin as well in a precursor to incidents yet to come.

Over a series of restarts Erickson took the lead back from Zampa on lap 27 which he would ultimately never relinquish. Zampa, Licata, and Cook staged a constant battle for second until the race was halted at lap 37 for Philpott losing an engine in turn one. The ensuing pileup ended the night for Dillon Tucker, Tyler Herzog, Rick Thompson, and Howard Holden.

After a break for Twisted Tea Modified racing, the second segment was much cleaner with 63 laps left to run. Bryan Herzog started making his presence felt at the halfway point challenging for second place with the outside line coming in. Herzog took over second from Zampa but Licata took it from him on lap 55.

Jason Aguirre staged a nice battle with Cook for fifth while the racing continued to heat up at the front. Herzog and Licata got physical for second place with Herzog taking over the position as Licata bounced off of the backstretch gate.

After a lap 81 caution the chase was on between Erickson and Herzog. Herzog closed in on lap 94, jumping inside Erickson in turn three with the pair making contact in a fan-pleasing duel. Erickson was able to drive away by a few car lengths and hang on for the win. Licata ran third to unofficially take second in the points while Zampa and a late-charging Ryan Hart rounded out the top-five over Cook, Trevor Schlundt, Dominic Lopez in a career-best eighth, and rookies Kyle Fortney and Shelden Cooper.

Rookie Jackson Dukes won an exciting 20 lapper for the California Mini Cups. Dukes broke out to the early lead in the field made up of five rookies and two second-year drivers. "LIL" Bruce Bivens went upside down for a surprising red flag crash in turn four on the eighth lap of the feature. Bivens walked away after some assistance from the safety crew at Madera Speedway.

The final 12 laps were a duel between the rookie Dukes and the veterans Adam Lemke and Joshua Terry as the only three remaining cars running.

Lemke tried to close in during the final two laps but it wasn't enough as Dukes took the popular win ahead of Lemke and Terry.

Napa's PJ Pedroncelli made the most of his second start for the Twisted Tea Modifieds in claiming the 40 lap main event. All seven competitors on hand intend to race in the upcoming "Lucas Oil Summertime Horsepower Nationals" at Madera in either the Lucas Oil or North State Modified divisions. The nationals will be June 11th with MAVTV televising both the Lucas Oil and Western Winged Sprints.

The third round of the series was led early by Robbie "The Kid" Knittel over Camino's Scot Alves. Pedroncelli emerged in second on lap 13. The duel between Knittel and Pedroncelli ended up on lap 29 when Knittel's car darted to the left in turn three hard into the wall. His night was done and Pedroncelli led the final 11 laps without contest over Alves, Sacramento's Eric Price, Brian Collins, and Elliot Sterjne. Knittel should remain the series points leader despite the crash.

The Loanmart Madera Speedway is dark before returning on June 11th for the Lucas Oil Summertime Horsepower Nationals with a wide-range of open wheel thunder on the fastest 1/3rd mile in the west. More details are available at www.RaceMadera.com

MAVTV coverage of the 2016 season at Madera Speedway begins this Thursday night at 8 p.m. Eastern / 5 p.m. Pacific and continues every Thursday during the month of June with new episodes. The March 12th season opener for the Open Late Models kicks off the "Madera Racing" show.