$5000 to win mark Forni classic draws star studded field this Saturday night

By Bill Sullivan

imageCourtesy, Civil War Sprint Series Press Release


The stars and cars of the Civil War Series Presented By Flowmaster return to the Placerville Speedway on Saturday night for the lucrative 9th Annual Mark Forni classic with $5000 up for grabs for the feature event winner along with a lock in spot to the Johnny Key Classic.


In what will be the series’ seventh race of the 2014 season, the Mark Forni Classic will be the second of three stops at the high banked ¼ mile speedway, and many of the regions top drivers will be on hand for the race that pays tribute to a man who was heavily involved at the speedway for decades.


Saturday night offers a big payday to the feature event winner as they will take home a cool $5000 thanks to many generous local sponsors, but the winner will also be locked into the 54th Johnny Key Classic taking place at the Ocean Speedway on August 23rd.


During the 2013 running of the event, Andy Gregg became the first Placerville resident to pocket the prestigious race, as he piloted Scott Russell’s No. 14R machine to victory lane. With Gregg representing California at the Knoxville Nationals this weekend, he will be the only former winner of the race not in action as two time winners Andy Forsberg and Sean Becker will look for their third event wins, while Kyle Hirst, Greg DeCaires, and Mason Moore will look to become two-time winners.


In what has been a highly competitive Civil War season to date, the series has seen six different winners in each of the six races, the most recent being Brad Furr at the July 11th Howard Kaeding Classic in Watsonville, CA.


During the May 31st visit to the Placerville Speedway, Auburn, CA stand out, Andy Forsberg, captured his first Civil War Series presented by Flowmaster feature event win at the track with his F&F Racing team, and is very hungry to become to series’ first repeat winner of the season, and become the all time wins leader of the Forni Classic.


Leading the series back to action is series point leader, Fremont, CA pilot, Shane Golobic, who is coming off a great night at the Placerville Speedway last Saturday night, as he was able to pick up wins in both his Keith Day sprint car, as well as in a midget.


Sitting behind Golobic, is the reigning series champion, Roseville, CA driver, Sean Becker. Like Forsberg, Becker is looking to become the first three time winner of this event following his 2008 and 2009 wins. Becker recently picked up his first win of the season with his Main Motorsports as he won at the Placerville Speedway with the King of the West Series, and will look to find victory lane again on Saturday night in a big way.


Coming into the Mark Forni Classic sitting third in Civil War Series standings is Prunedale, CA product, Justin Sanders, who is in the midst of a breakout season at the Placerville Speedway in 2014. With three wins at the speedway to date, Sanders enters this event on heels of a second place finish at the speedway last Saturday night, and is eager to cash in with the Civil War Series, as he sits just 50 markers out of the top spot.


With Forsberg sitting in the fourth spot, Penngrove, CA driver, Alissa Geving rounds out the top-five off of her very impressive run with the series at the Ocean Speedway back in July. Going toe-to-toe with Brad Furr and Jonathan Allard, Geving ended her night on the podium, and will be one to watch at the Placerville Speedway on Saturday night, as the high banked facility fits her hammerdown driving style.


Other drivers that are scheduled to be in attendance for the marquee event on Saturday night are Matt Peterson, Herman Klein, Koen Shaw, Jonathan Allard, Steven Tiner, Kurt Nelson, Kyle Hirst, DH Netto, Justyn Cox, Bradley Terrell, Jimmy Trulli, Mason Moore, and many others.


On Saturday night, the grandstands are scheduled to open at 5pm, with cars beginning to hit the track for warm ups by 6pm. With a capacity crowd anticipated, fans are encouraged to get an early start to ensure a ticket.


Past Mark Forni Classic Winners


2006- Kyle Hirst

2007- Greg DeCaires

2008- Sean Becker

2009- Sean Becker-

2010- Mason Moore

2011- Andy Forsberg

2012- Andy Forsberg

2013- Andy Gregg




Speedway hosts over 100 cars Saturday; Golobic brings home duel victories

By Bill Sullivan

08_02_2014_277PLACERVILLE, CA – After cancellation of last week’s race due to the area wild land fire, teams and fans alike returned to Placerville Speedway Saturday night in grand fashion for a five division program that saw record breaking car counts at the El Dorado County Fairgrounds. Five divisions of racing formed the race card, bringing over 100 cars to the quarter-mile clay oval with 360 Sprint Cars, BCRA Midgets and Midget Lites, Limited Late Models and Pure Stocks all in competition for Stymeist Collision Centers night and the 13th Jackson Rancheria Casino Resort Championship Point Race of the season.

Earlier in the week, Fremont’s Shane Golobic made the decision to defect from the King of the West Sprint Car Series he was due to compete with in Stockton and decided to race at Placerville in two divisions. Driving the Keith Day Trucking #22 Sprint Car as well as the Doug Bock owned #26 Midget, Golobic accomplished an amazing feat Saturday, bringing home victories in both divisions.

“This is a really great night winning in both classes,” said Golobic. “The last time we did double duty here I ended up one and two, tonight we got the win in both races and these are both definitely for my former pitman Bill, who we lost a week ago. I’ll take Placerville Speedway anytime over Stockton and I’m glad we made the decision to run here instead tonight, it definitely paid off.”

In the Sprint Car feature, Golobic started on the inside of the second row for the event that was scheduled for 20-laps in distance, five laps less than the usual length, due to time constraints in the entrant packed racing program. By completion of the first lap, Golobic used the low line of the track and emerged the leader as they exited the fourth turn, passing pole sitter Seth Nunes of Medford, Oregon and Justin Sanders of Prunedale in the first quarter mile.08_02_2014_236

Despite numerous caution breaks throughout the event, Golobic maintained the top spot for the entire event, working his way into lapped traffic at the halfway point where he was closely challenged by the likes of Sanders, fast qualifier Jimmy Trulli of Placerville and Steven Tiner of Elverta, Greg DeCaires of Elk Grove and Andy Forsberg of Auburn. Trulli fell out of the mix in the closing laps when he suffered a damaging rollover exiting the second turn and retired with damage.

Keeping himself in the thick of lapped traffic, Golobic drove his way to his second sprint car feature win here of the season before strapping himself into the Midget for another 25 lap feature event in which he lead every single lap to score the double digit win.

In the Sprint Car event, Golobic was trailed by Sanders, Tiner, DeCaires and Forsberg. In the BCRA Midget division he was challenged to the finish line by Brian Gard of Kelseyville, Sean Dodenhoff of Bakersfield, Richard Vander Weerd of Visalia and Scott Pierovich of Lodi.08_02_2014_251

The BCRA Midget Lites brought a full field of entrants with 25 cars on the roster Saturday night. The event was the inaugural Wayne Albright Memorial, a race in tribute of the well respected car owner who passed away after complications from the flu last year.

Bobby Michnowicz lead the entire race to drive to his second Placerville victory of the season. Michnowicz was followed across the line by Logan Seavey of Roseville., Bradley Dillard of Oakdale finished in third followed by Jeff Dyer of Helendale and Chris Hansen of Grass Valley.

“It’s definitely an honor to win here tonight in honor of Wayne Albright,” said Michnowicz in his victory lane interview. “He was a great part of this organization and is missed. We were able to get out front and stay there tonight, this one is really special.”

In the Pure Stock division, Matt Tilford of Citrus Heights returned to victory lane. The win was Tilford’s fourth of the season and the first since a heartbreaking loss on the Fourth of July. Tilford’s victory was well received by the entire Tilford crew and family, who suffered an emotional day with the loss of their longtime family dog as well along with the sale of the late Donnie Tilford’s excavating equipment. For the Tilford family, in tough times they do what they do best and return to the race track, often bringing home a win and such was the case on this particular night as he was followed across the line by Eddie Gardner of Sacramento who led the early laps of the race before being passed by Tilford on the 11th lap. Scott Grunert of Woodland was third ahead of Tim Mack of Citrus Heights and Rick Grunert of Woodland.08_02_2014_269

“This definitely was a tough day for all of us in many ways,” said Tilford as he relaxed against the door of his #92 Pure Stock in victory lane and still found some humor at the long end of the day. “I guess I can say this one’s for Shadow, our longtime four legged friend, who ironically was 92 in dog years. I just have to thank everyone that works so hard on this car, especially after the Fourth of July when it got tore up pretty good. We’re back here in victory lane and looking forward to coming back and doing it again.”

In the Limited Late Models, point leader Matt Micheli drove flag to flag to score his first win of the season. Micheli started second in the 15 lap race and took command of the field at the green flag after pole sitter Ken Micheli of Live Oak and Jay Norton of Shingle Springs collided in the third turn.

Once in front, Micheli remained strong, moving into lapped traffic at the 11 lap mark. At the finish line he was followed by championship challenger Ray Trimble of Auburn, Randy Shafer, Paul Gigliomoni and Dan Brown Jr.

“I was beginning to wonder if I was ever actually going to win one of these this year, I was starting to worry I was going to become one of those guys racing for a championship without a win to name, and we’ve all been there before a time or two,” said Micheli. “Tonight we finally got it done but the race for this championship is a close one. Ray Trimble is right there and Tom Tilford is in the hunt too and both of those guys are tough drivers here. It’s going to be a good one for the fans.”


Next Saturday night is a big night at Placerville Speedway as the Civil War Sprint Cars return for the richest race of the year, the $5000 to win Mark Forni Classic. Gates will open at 5 p.m. with qualifying at 6:30.

Join nearly 5000 friends of Placerville Speedway on Facebook, where you can interact with other fans, drivers and staff in a positive, family friendly fashion. You can also follow Placerville Speedway on twitter to keep up to date on events to come. Visit the official track website at www.placervillespeedway.com.

Racing returns this Saturday for Stymeist Auto Body Night and five big divisions

By Bill Sullivan


imagePLACERVILLE, CA – After an unexpected cancellation last Saturday due to the area wildfire support, racing action is set to return this Saturday night as the Jackson Rancheria Championship Season continues at Placerville Speedway with a giant night of racing at the El Dorado County Fairgrounds.

Five divisions will be on the race card this week as the championship point battles wind towards the final chapter of the season in all three of the weekly divisions competing for the season crown at the El Dorado County Fairgrounds quarter-mile dirt track and will be joined by all of the venues from the popular Bay Cities Racing Association for Steve Stymeist Auto Body Collision Centers Night at the speedway.

Winged 360 Sprint Cars, Limited Late Models and Pure Stocks will return to action on the quarter mile in the battle for the 2014 track championship presented by the New Jackson Rancheria Casino Resort, Hoosier Tires, The Mountain Democrat and Thompson’s Auto and Truck Centers. The three anchor divisions will be joined by BCRA’s traditional Midgets along with the Midget Lites as well as an appearance by the association’s Vintage Midget Class.

The large presence of the BCRA teams will be part of their annual Jack London Bash Hall of Fame Picnic that takes place earlier in the day at the Fairgrounds. This annual event brings racers of the past and present together as inductees to the hall of fame are announced during an afternoon of great food, socializing and more prior to the night’s big race.

Saturday’s race is being presented in part by Steve Stymeist Auto Body Collision Centers, Stymeist is a longtime supporter of Placerville Speedway and has locations to serve all your auto body needs in both El Dorado and Amador Counties. Have you had an auto accident or damaged your RV? Learn more about how Steve Stymeist Collision Centers can help you make sure your vehicle is fixed correctly for the right price and peace of mind that you are safely back on the road at www.stymeistautobody.com.

Entering Saturday’s event, the battle for the Championship is winding its way into it’s final chapter in all three divisions as the crowning of the season champions is now less than 7 weeks away.

In the Sprint Car division, Elk Grove’s Greg DeCaires remains at the top of the standings with local car owner Dale Miller. DeCaires is currenty ahead by 52-points over five time champion Andy Forsberg of Auburn who has rapidly recovered from a slow season start into a championship contender once again in the competitive F&F Racing Team ride.

midgetsSitting in the third position is Prunedale’s Justin Sanders who is 78-points out of the lead while Jimmy Trulli of Placerville is fourth, just 20-points back. Jake Morgan of Fair Oaks rounds out the top five in this division entering Saturday’s race.

The Limited Late Model division continues to be led by former champion Matt Micheli of Live Oak. Four time winner Ray Trimble of Auburn continues to stalk Micheli’s lead position, trailing him by just 11 points. Defending champion Tom Tilford of Citrus Heights is third in the ranks, 45-points from the lead. Former track champion Dan Brown Jr. of Rocklin is fourth, 63-points from the top while Jay Norton of Shingle Springs rounds out the top five, 89-points from the leader.

Scott Grunert of Woodland continued his quest toward his first career championship in the Pure Stock division. A two time winner this season, Grunert is 19 points ahead of Eddie Gardner of Sacramento. Rick Grunert is third in the ranks, 36-points out of the lead. Tim Mack of Diamond Springs is fourth while Chris Van Roekel of Grass Valley rounds out the top five.

In the BCRA Midgets, the Wayne Albright Memorial Race will bring a stellar field together. Chad Nichols leads the championship standings over Gary Conterno, Floyd Alvis and JR Williams. Nick Chivello rounds out the top five in the division standings.

In the visiting Midget Lites, Brian Corso is the point leader over Marcus Smith. Hunter Kinney is third overall with Craig Holsted in fourth and Logan Seavey rounding out the top five. For complete information on the BCRA divisions or the Jack London Bash Picnic that begins at 10 a.m. visit www.bcraracing.com.

The grandstands will open at 5 p.m. Saturday night with qualifying at 6:30 p.m. Adults are $15, Seniors $13, Juniors are $12, Children $5 and those 5 and under are free. Placerville Speedway is located on the El Dorado County Fairgrounds at 100 Placerville Drive and is sponsored by the Jackson Rancheria Casino Resort who offers $25 in free play to every race fan this Saturday night. Additional sponsors include The Mountain Democrat, Thompson’s Toyota, ADCO Drive Lines, Hoosier Racing Tires and Riebes Auto Parts of El Dorado County.

Join nearly 5000 friends of Placerville Speedway on Facebook, where you can interact with other fans, drivers and staff in a positive, family friendly fashion. You can also follow Placerville Speedway on twitter to keep up to date on events to come. Visit the official track website at www.placervillespeedway.com.

Fire evacuations and command center force cancellation of Saturday, July 26 racing

By Bill Sullivan

imagePLACERVILLE, CA (7-25-14) – The management of Placerville Speedway has just received notice by county officials that the El Dorado County Fairgrounds will be unavailable for public use to be utilized for an emergency fire camp and evacuation center for the wildfire that is burning out of control and forcing evacuations in both Amador and El Dorado County.

These circumstances beyond our control, unfortunately are requiring us to cancel Saturday’s racing program yo allow the facility to be utilized for this purpose. Saturday, July 26, 2014. Racing will resume one Saturday August 2. We apologize for these circumstances and our thoughts and prayers go out to the families affected by this situation and for the safety of our firefighters.

Please watch our website for information on next week’s event.

Sean Becker wins a wild one with the King of the West 410 Sprint Car Series at Placerville Speedway on Saturday

By Bill Sullivan


By Gary Thomas/Photos by Donna Peter

Placerville, CA – July 19, 2014…A packed house on Saturday night at the Placerville Speedway witnessed one of the craziest finishes seen in a long time, when leader Brent Kaeding spun on the cushion during the final corner and resulted in Sean Becker sneaking by for the dramatic victory.

The unbelievable win for Becker was his 10th career with the King of the West 410 Sprint Car Series, which moves him into a tie for ninth on the all-time win list. It also marked his first win of the year with the series aboard his Main Motorsports/ H.A.M. Construction No. 35m machine.

“Wow this is so crazy I don’t know what to say,” said an ecstatic Becker after climbing the front stretch fence. “We’ve been struggling to start the year, but I knew we could turn it around and hopefully this will be the first win of many. It feels so good to finally get another KWS win, because it’s been a while. What a great race tonight was and I hope all the fans enjoyed that one.”

The 30-lap King of the West 410 Sprint Car main event started out with Becker jumping into the lead at the waving of the green flag. It didn’t last long however, as Chico’s Jonathan Allard pounced on lap-three to take over the top spot. A very well prepared quarter-mile was presented to teams with multiple grooves on both corners.

A double file restart on lap 14 then saw California racing legend Brent Kaeding beat Allard to turn one and slice his way into the lead. Placerville’s very own Andy Gregg was also making noise and charged around Allard for the second spot on lap 19, before setting his sights on Kaeding. Gregg would hound Kaeding for a number of laps putting on a great show for the home town crowd.image

With things tightening up Fremont’s Shane Golobic and Becker looked to join the party. As Gregg looked to take the lead from Kaeding on lap 27 some minor contact ensued which got the Mike’s Hard Lemonade 14r of Gregg out of shape. At the same time Golobic tried to go around the outside, but contact would occur and leave Golobic’s 121 Sprinter with a folded front end. Auburn’s Andy Forsberg had nowhere to go and plowed into Golobic to bring out a red flag.

On the double file restart Kaeding hit it perfect and Gregg would get out of shape, losing a few spots dropping to fifth. Becker was now into second and came hard after Kaeding for the lead. The duo raced extremely close together and when the white flag came out it was anybody’s game. As Kaeding rounded turn four, chaos ensued when he hit the cushion and spun around sideways. With cars going everywhere to avoid him Becker somehow squirted out to cross the checkered flag for the improbable win.

Kaeding somehow got the car straightened out to finish the race in second, with Grass Valley’s Jason Statler, 17th starter Dominic Scelzi of Fresno and Gregg rounding out the top-five. The remainder of the top-10 was filled out by Hanford’s DJ Netto, Roseville’s Colby Copeland, Elk Grove’s Bobby McMahan, Chico’s Jonathan Allard and Campbell’s Bud Kaeding.

The 12-lap B-main was won by Mason Moore, with the three 10-lap heat races picked off by Sean Becker, Shane Golobic and Brent Kaeding. Jonathan Allard won the six-lap dash and Bobby McMahan opened the night by setting fast time in the 27-car field.

The companion BCRA Midget Lite main event was claimed by veteran Bobby Michnowicz over Brian Corso, Cori Andrews, Terry Bergstrom and Chris Hansen in the top-five. Michnowicz is a veteran of Sprint Car racing, who is now competing with the BCRA Midget Lites.image