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Shawn Jones scores emotional victory at Placerville Speedway

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By: Brad Kennedy *

Placerville, CA (June 25)…60 race cars jammed the pits at Placerville Speedway for the 9th point race of the 2016 Red Hawk Casino Championship Series, which also represented the second of four “Placerville Posse Challenge” events on the year.

20 Thompson’s Auto Group winged 360 sprint cars lined up for the evening’s 25 lap main event, with points leader Mason Moore leading the field to the green flag. Moore set a torrid pace over the first 15 laps, looking for his third feature win of the year.

A lap 16 restart saw Moore once again jump out front as Andy Forsberg in the PitStopUSA.com #7c utilized the top to go from fourth to second going into the first corner. However, Forsberg made contact with Moore sending the F&F Auto Racing #x1 into a spin collecting multiple drivers. Kirt Organ inherited the lead, up from his 4th starting spot. Over the course of the final 10 circuits, Organ held off a hard charging Greg DeCaires for the win. Michael Kofoid got by DeCaires in the waning laps to finish second, while Sean Becker and Andy Forsberg rounded out the top five.  

06_25_2016_215c“We have a hit and miss schedule this year at Placerville”, explained Organ in victory lane. “I love this track and can’t thank my team enough for getting me on the front stretch tonight. We have been struggling lately so we called my friend Larry Shelton to come help tonight and it paid off”.

Earlier in the evening, Andy Forsberg circled the 1/4 mile in 10.808 seconds and earned the $100 Fast Time award courtesy of ADCO Driveline and Exhaust. Heat race wins went to Kyler Shaw, Mason Moore, and Steven Tiner, while Sean Becker grabbed the AL Driveline Hard Charger bonus in the feature, improving 11 positions in the feature to finish 4th.

12 Domco Plumbing Limited Late Models were on hand for the evening, with father and son Mike and Tyler Lightfoot of Placerville owning the front row for the 20 lap event. As soon as the green flag dropped, second row starter Ryan McDaniel attacked like a shark in turns one and two and took the lead. Troy Foulger followed suit shortly thereafter, and moved into second. 06_25_2016_181c

McDaniel stretched a four second advantage in the non-stop event at one point, but found negotiating traffic difficult in the latter stages of the race, allowing Foulger to close. As the white flag flew, Foulger pulled the trigger to pass McDaniel, but misjudged the nose of the race car and made contact with McDaniel causing Foulger to spin on the last lap. McDaniel went on to win, marking his second victory at Placerville in 2016. Matt Micheli was second, with Foulger third, followed by Tyler and Mike Lightfoot to complete the top five.

“I knew I had to make quick work on the start due to the slick conditions. I just didn’t want to be stuck behind anybody, so I was aggressive on the start and that move ultimately won us the race,” a calm Ryan McDaniel explained in victory lane.

Heat race winners were Tom Tilford and Troy Foulger. 

17 Jay’s Mobile Welding and Fabricating Pure Stocks signed into the pits for the second Posse event of the year, with Orville Owens and Rick Grunert leading the field to green in the 20 lap feature. Grunert took command from Owens early, while Owens would execute a spin and keep going in turns one and two on lap 3.

The caution would wave eventually on lap 9 for Jason Palmer who spun in turn one, collecting the 22H of Michael Hilton and the 11L of Chris Van Roekle.

Rick Grunert would remain on point with Dan Smith in tow for the restart. However, the red flag came out as Rick Campbell hit the turn four wall and eventually rolled his car in turn one. Campbell was uninjured in the accident.

During the red flag stoppage, current Pure Stock point leader Nick Baldwin went to the pits with mechanical woes, and surrendered his fifth place position in the process.

As the race continued with Grunert in command, Chris Van Roekel and Sam Bernstein collided forcing officials to cut the race to 15 laps instead of the scheduled 20. Rick Grunert went on to win his first race of 2016 in the 14SR. Dan Smith, Scott Grunert, Orville Owens and Jason Palmer rounded out the top five.

Heat race wins were taken by Russ Murphy and Dan Jinkerson.

For the third time in 2016, the Nor-Cal Dwarf Car series took to the El Dorado County Fairgrounds clay oval. 21 cars and stars of the series were in attendance to try to tame the “Fastest ¼ mile dirt track in California”.

Mike Grenert and Toby Brown led the field to green, but the yellow followed immediately as Terre Rothweiler, Jenna Frazier, Thomas Leiby, Ken Radabaugh and Jeff Fitch all came together to stop the action.

When the race resumed, it would turn into a battle royale, as Chad Matthias, Shawn Jones, Scotty Dahlgren and Dan Geil threw slide job after slide job, swapping positions all around the speedway.

Yellow lights stopped the action with only four circuits to go as Scott Dahlgren and Chad Matthias would make contact, spinning Mattias in turn one.

On the restart, leader Scott Grenert got a slow start allowing Shawn Jones to move from third to the lead. Jones went on to win, dedicating the victory to his mother in law who had passed a few days earlier.

“This win will stick with us for a while”, said an emotional Jones. “I have to thank my brother in law for letting me drive this car for him tonight. I couldn’t be more humbled to win tonight for the family.” Jones explained.

The final finishing order had Grenert 2nd over Buddy Olchowka, Scott Dahlgren and Kevin Bender rounding out the top five. Jones also won the first heat while Danny Wagner and Chad Matthias won heats 2 & 3, respectively.

Placerville Speedway returns to action next Saturday night, July 2nd, with the 10th point race of the Red Hawk Casino Championship Series, while it will also mark the 3rd event of the four race Placerville Posse series. Pit gates open at 2PM with the front gates opening at 3PM. Racing begins at 7PM.

For complete details of the 2016 Red Hawk Casino Championship Racing Season, visit Placerville Speedway’s official website at www.placervillespeedway.com.

Join the over 7700 followers of Placerville Speedway on Facebook, where you can interact with fellow fans, drivers, and staff. You can also find Placerville Speedway on Twitter for schedule updates and more by following us @pvillespeedway. In addition, Placerville Speedway is now on Instagram. Please follow us @PvilleSpeedway.

Placerville Speedway is located on the El Dorado County Fairgrounds at 100 Placerville Drive in Placerville. The racing facility is operated by Russell Motorsports Incorporated, which can be reached at the track business office at 530-344-7592.

* Additional writing contributions by Dean Mills

Placerville Speedway gears back up this Saturday after week hiatus

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Following a weekend off to observe Father’s Day, Placerville Speedway roars back into action this coming Saturday night at the El Dorado County Fairgrounds.

x1cThe four division program marks the 9th Red Hawk Casino Championship point race of the season, and will also mark the second of four “Placerville Posse” events for the Thompson’s Auto Group 360 Sprint Car Series, the Domco Plumbing Limited Late Models, as well as the Jay’s Mobile Welding and Fabricating Pure Stock division. In addition, the NorCal Dwarf Cars will be on hand for the third time in the 2016 season.

The rescheduled “Fan Appreciation Day” Car Show is also set to coincide with this weekend’s event, and will take place from noon to 3pm at the Thompson’s Buick/GMC location on Placerville Drive.

All four divisions of race cars in competition that evening will be represented at Thompson’s, featuring 360 Sprint Cars, Limited Late Model Cars, Pure Stock Cars and the visiting Nor-Cal Dwarf Car Association series.

In addition, kids up to age of 14 will receive a free t-shirt. Thompson’s will be accepting donations for Hot Dogs and sodas with all proceeds benefitting the Boys & Girls Club El Dorado County Western Slope. For more info on the Boys and Girls Club, visit www.bgce.org.

The action will then shift across the street to the El Dorado County Fairgrounds, where  Placerville Speedway will have pit gates open at 2PM with the front gates opening at 3PM. Racing begins at 7PM.

“We are looking forward to welcoming the Boys & Girls Club of El Dorado County Western Slope to Placerville Speedway this Saturday night”, said track co-promoter Kami Arnold. “They will have many club participants and staff members in attendance for the evening and we are thrilled that they will be on hand for the evening as part of our continued commitment to reaching out to our community”. In addition, Club Director Sean McCartney has been invited to the announcer’s booth to share updates of the new construction and expansionx2c project that is currently underway.

For complete details of the 2016 Red Hawk Casino Championship Racing Season, visit Placerville Speedway’s official website at www.placervillespeedway.com.

Join the over 7600 followers of Placerville Speedway on Facebook, where you can interact with fellow fans, drivers, and staff. You can also find Placerville Speedway on Twitter for schedule updates and more by following us @pvillespeedway. In addition, Placerville Speedway is now on Instagram. Please follow us @PvilleSpeedway.

Placerville Speedway is located on the El Dorado County Fairgrounds at 100 Placerville Drive in Placerville. The racing facility is operated by Russell Motorsports Incorporated, which can be reached at the track business office at 530-344-7592.

Steven Tiner Dominates Civil War Series Event at Placerville Speedway

By PJ Petersen

Placerville, CA (June 11)…Saturday night at the Placerville Speedway, Steven Tiner had a little bit of luck on his side to put him in position to dominate the 30-lap Civil War Series feature event, and qualify for the Johnny Key Classic that is set for August 20th at the Ocean Speedway. DSC_0338c

Lining up on the front of the feature event, Tiner would lead the Civil War Series presented by Flowmaster field to green as he jumped to the early lead over Chase Majdic and Greg DeCaires, before the first yellow flag of the night flew on the second lap.

On the extremely slick Placerville Speedway, Tiner would continue to lead the way as DeCaires moved into the second spot. With the lead duo breaking away from the pack, Colby Copeland, Andy Forsberg, and Mason Moore jockeyed for position in the top-five, while Jonathan Allard began working his way through the pack.

As the leaders got into traffic, the yellow would again fly on the 11th circuit and give Tiner a clear track, but would restack the field for another double file restart.

With a yellow on the ensuing restart, a single file restart would see Tiner leave the field in his wake as DeCaires continued to chase after. With Forsberg taking over the third spot, Kyle Hirst and Jonathan Allard would move into the Top-Five as the race settled into an extended green flag run.

Tiner looked to be well on his way to his first Civil War Series win of the season, but a yellow on the 27th lap would turn the race into a three-lap shootout with defending track champion, Greg DeCaires right on his tail.

The immediate restart saw Hirst hop the cushion and bring the yellow back out, but the race’s final restart would see Tiner fend off DeCaires’ challenge as he picked up the win and earned a berth into the Johnny Key Classic.

“I had someone looking over me tonight,” a jubilated Steven Tiner said. “We missed the inversion in time trials, but had some luck on our side and ended up on the front row of our heat and were able to win. Then a little girl pulled us the two pill for the Dash and we ended up on the front row of the feature and the rest his history. I have to thank my Uncle Tom for his help because we ran Hanford Friday night and got home at 4:30am. It’s great to get a win at Placerville Speedway.”

DeCaires would finish in the second spot, and Mason Moore would earn the last spot on the Podium. Forsberg would finish fourth, Allard fifth from 16th, Copeland sixth, Mike Benson seventh, Logan Seavey eighth, Justyn Cox ninth, and Chase Majdic would round out the Top-10.

Saturday night saw a total of 32 cars check into the pit area with Oregon driver, Jarred Ridge earning quick time honors.

A four-heat race program was in place and wins went to Moore, DeCaires, Copeland, and Tiner. Chase Majdic would win the Dash, and Kyle Hirst would come back from a heat race flip to win the B and transfer to the feature event along with Allard, Ridge, Terrell, Seavey, and Geoff Ensign.

The companion division Nor-Cal Dwarf series saw 26 cars on hand for their second visit of 2016.

For the feature event 20 cars would take on the slick Placerville Speedway surface as Thomas Leiby and Toby Brown would set the pace for the 20 lap main. As the green flew, the red would be quickly drawn as the 24n of Mike Grenert would catch the fence off of turn four, flipping violently down the front stretch. Colby Weisz would make significant contact with Grenert, as well, but fortunately both drivers were ok.

As the feature resumed, the race for the top five would be an epic battle between Kevin Bender, Johnny Reeves, Scott Dahlgren and Buddy Olschowka, as slide jobs were thrown by all for the top spot.

As the track dried out more, the lead would expand for Kevin Bender in the late stages of the main event and he would go on to take the win in front of a packed house. Second would be awarded to Johnny Reeves. Third went to Scott Dahlgren, while fourth was Buddy Olschowka and Ray Smith rounded out the top five.

Heat wins went to Mike Grenert, Shawn Jones, Buddy Olschowka, while the B main winner was Doug Martin.

Next Saturday night, Placerville Speedway sits dormant, but will return with the 9th Red Hawk Casino Championship event on June 25th.

For complete details of the 2016 Red Hawk Casino Championship Racing Season, visit Placerville Speedway’s official website at www.placervillespeedway.com.

Join the over 7600 followers of Placerville Speedway on Facebook, where you can interact with fellow fans, drivers, and staff. You can also find Placerville Speedway on Twitter for schedule updates and more by following us @pvillespeedway. In addition, Placerville Speedway is now on Instagram. Please follow us @PvilleSpeedway.

Placerville Speedway is located on the El Dorado County Fairgrounds at 100 Placerville Drive in Placerville. The racing facility is operated by Russell Motorsports Incorporated, which can be reached at the track business office at 530-344-7592.

 

Civil War Series Heads To Placerville Speedway Saturday Night

By PJ Petersen

Placerville, CA (June 9)…Taking a week off following a successful double-header weekend over the Memorial Day Holiday, the Civil War Series presented by Flowmaster is set to attack the high banked Placerville Speedway on Saturday night for the first of two visits in 2016, with the winner of the race locking into the Johnny key Classic that is scheduled in August at Ocean Speedway.

“We had an awe3widecsome weekend of racing with the Civil War Series presented by Flowmaster over the Memorial Day Weekend, and I know all of our teams and our staff are reall looking forward to Placerville this Saturday night,” John Prentice said. “We have had some great car counts and great shows thus far, and with a Johnny Key Classic spot up for grabs, it should be another great night of racing.”

After winning the 17th Annual Mel Hall Memorial and running second at the Silver Dollar Fair, eight-time Civil War Series presented by Flowmaster champion, Andy Forsberg comes into this event as the early point leader, as he is in search of his ninth title. Forsberg who is no stranger to the Placerville Speedway, picked up a win earlier this year and is looking to lock into the Johnny Key Classic after winning the race one year ago.

Fresh off his second win of the season at the Placerville Speedway, Mason Moore will look to continue his hot streak at the famous bullring. Currently leading the track championship standings at Placerville, Moore will come into Saturday’s event looking to cut into Forsberg’s slim 15 point advantage as he looks for his first Civil War Series presented by Flowmaster feature event win of the season.

Sitting quietly in the third spot is Sebastopol’s Geoff Ensign. Quietly collecting Top-10’s in the series’ first three events, Ensign comes into the fourth event of the season fresh off of his first win of 2016 this past Saturday night at the Petaluma Speedway. With non-wing success at the track in the past, Ensign will look to get his Ivan Worden team their second consecutive win this weekend.

Known for it’s high-banked configuration and red clay, the Placerville Speedway is a stop most drivers, teams, and fans look forward to year after year. Saturday night proves to be another star studded show with the aforementioned drivers scheduled to be in attendance along with Tony Gualda, Steven Tiner, Michael Ing, Bradley Terrell, Cody Lamar, Seth Nunes, Jonathan Allard, Sean Becker, Matt Peterson and many more travelers as they will square up with the Placerville contingent consisting of Greg DeCaires, Jimmy Truli, Mike Benson, Justin Johnson, Logan Seavey and many more.

In addition, the NorCal Dwarf Car Series makes its second appearance on the year at the El Dorado County Fairgrounds. A field of over 20 cars is expected on hand, led by Phoenix, Arizona’s Shawn Jones who won the last time the Dwarf Cars hit Placerville on April 16th. Dwarfc

Saturday night, pit gates open at 2pm, the front gates are scheduled to open at 3pm with racing action scheduled to go green at 7pm. Adult tickets will be available for $18, while seniors and juniors will be admitted for $15, kids 6-11 for just $6, and children 5 and under will be admitted for free.

For complete details of the 2016 Red Hawk Casino Championship Racing Season, visit Placerville Speedway’s official website at www.placervillespeedway.com.

Join the over 7600 followers of Placerville Speedway on Facebook, where you can interact with fellow fans, drivers, and staff. You can also find Placerville Speedway on Twitter for schedule updates and more by following us @pvillespeedway. In addition, Placerville Speedway is now on Instagram. Please follow us @PvilleSpeedway.

Placerville Speedway is located on the El Dorado County Fairgrounds at 100 Placerville Drive in Placerville. The racing facility is operated by Russell Motorsports Incorporated, which can be reached at the track business office at 530-344-7592.

 

Mason Moore continues hot streak at Placerville Speedway

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By Brad Kennedy *

Placerville, CA (June 4)…Despite two weeks off, Princeton California’s Mason Moore continued his hot streak in the 2016 Placerville Speedway Red Hawk Casino Championship Series in the Thompson’s Auto Group 360 Sprint Car division. Heading into the night, Moore had yet to finish outside the top five in the previous five events thus far in the season, and on Saturday night he continued to be the cream of the crop aboard his F & F Auto Racing number X1.

Starting on the outside front row alongside pole sitter Shawn Conde, Moore jumped into the lead and stretched an early lead over Conde, Jimmy Trulli, Steven Tiner and Greg DeCaires. The red flag flew after 1 lap was complete for 7th place starter Matt Barber who rode out a wild ride that ended up over the turn 4 fence. Fortunately, Barber emerged unscathed, and walked back to his trailer under his own power.

On the ensuing restart, Moore once again grabbed the lead but racing was halted again quickly when Cody Hodgson flipped without injury in turn 1 after contact with Bobby Butler.

06_04_2016_244c From there, Moore would set sail and lead unchallenged over the next 20 laps while 4th place starter Steven Tiner would take 3rd from Trulli on lap 3, then overtake Conde for second on lap 18. Tiner began to reel in the leader in traffic over the final few laps, but Moore proved too strong and scored his second victory of the season.

“I have to thank the family that drew the number two pill for me on the front stretch tonight”, Moore explained. “The track was hard to pass on tonight and I was having a tough time with traffic when I saw the number 94 (of Steven Tiner) move to second on the scoreboard. I knew he was going to be railing the top, but I knew that once I lapped James Sweeney I was pretty comfortable running the bottom, because he would hold up Tiner. From there we just held on to win.”

With the victory, Moore extended his already commanding point lead to 61 over defending track champion Greg Decaires, who finished 3rd behind Tiner. Trulli finished 4th while Kenny Allen rounded out the top five.

Heat race victories went to DeCaires, Tiner, and Moore while Kenny Allen’s first visit of the year to Placerville netted him the Adco Driveline and Exhaust Quick Time Award with an elapsed time of 10.373 seconds. Kyler Shaw earned the AL Driveline Hard Charger bonus moving up 11 spots after starting scratch on the field and driving to a tenth place feature finish.

10 Domco Plumbing Limited Late Models entered round 8 of the Placerville Speedway championship season. The 20 lap feature had Eddie Gardner in the black #3 lead the field to green over Ryan Peter. On lap 2, Paul Gugleimoni went by Peter for second exiting turn 4.

Mike Lightfoot had started in the 5th position, but was on the move early and passed Peter on lap 5, then overtook Gugleimoni a lap later exiting turn 4. It took Lightfoot 5 more laps to chase down point leader Eddie Gardner to take the lead.

On a lap 12 restart, the leader’s son, Tyler Lightfoot would follow suit and grab second from Gardner.

Father and son pulled away to post a 1-2 finish, and in the process, Mike Lightfoot ended a long seven year winless streak. Unfortunately, the younger Lightfoot was disqualified after failing a post-race inspection. Point leader Eddie Gardner inherited second and retained his championship lead. Third place went to Terry Kuntz, while Ryan Peter, and Paul Gugleimoni finished fourth and fifth, respectively. 06_04_2016_212c

“Tonight is pretty special,” an emotional Mike Lightfoot said in the winner’s circle. “The last time I won was seven years ago, when my daughter was born. To be racing with my son out here, and us having a 1-2 finish is very special,” he said (before the disqualification). Lightfoot also grabbed the RMI Hard Charger bonus after winning from 5th.

The two heat race victories went to Wayne Trimble and Ray Trimble.

20 Jay’s Mobile Welding and Fabrication Pure Stocks entered the ¼ mile clay playground. Jason Palmer and Travis Emery started in the front row and led the field to green flag, with Palmer out front. Emery would spin from his second spot on lap 2 to bring out the caution.

Palmer continued to lead the field while Scott Grunert moved to second from his 8th starting spot by lap 3.

After multiple cautions, a lap 13 restart saw 10th starting Dan Jinkerson move from 4th to 2nd, and take up chase on leader Palmer. A lap 17 restart saw Palmer take the outside, giving Jinkerson the inside lane. Jinkerson would capitalize on Palmer’s decision, take the lead, and go  on to score his second victory of the season.

In victory lane, Jinkerson was very blunt in his assessment of the race. “It was a wild night tonight. I’m not sure what to think about it”, he said. “There was a lot of rough driving that I hope the speed06_04_2016_193cway officials take care of. The key was to be patient and wait for guys to wreck themselves, time my restarts better, and it ultimately it got me the win tonight”.
Jinkerson took the checkered over Palmer, Russ Murphy, Scott Grunert, and point leader Nick Baldwin. Heat wins went to Murphy, Orville Owens, and Jinkerson, who also grabbed the RMI Hard Charger bonus after moving form 10th to victory in the feature.

13 BCRA Midget Lites signed into the pits for their 4th appearance of the 2016 season. Australian native Scotty Males would pick up his first win of the year. Males started in the third position, and followed pole sitter Kyle Offill and outside row 1 starter Tim Kinser into turn 1.

On lap 4, Kinser got over the bank in turn 1 surrendering second to Males. Offill look poised to win his third feature in four starts until the leaders approached the lapped car of Ryan Souza on lap 16. Males went topside and used Souza as a pick to take the lead. Males took the checkered flag over Offill, Charlie Carracilo, RC Smith, and Craig Dillard.

“We have been podium strong all year,” Males said as he addressed the crowd. “We just finally had all pieces of the puzzle fit tonight. I have to thank Red Hawk Casino along with Adco Driveline and Exhaust. They do a great job helping us stay on the track every week.”

In addition, Males won the first heat, while Caraccilo won the other heat race.

Next Saturday marks the first appearance of 2016 for the California Civil War Series 360 Sprint Cars, as well as the NorCal Dwarf Cars. Pit gates open at 2PM, while the grandstand opens at 3PM. Racing begins at 7PM.

For complete details of the 2016 Red Hawk Casino Championship Racing Season, visit Placerville Speedway’s official website at www.placervillespeedway.com.

Join the over 7600 followers of Placerville Speedway on Facebook, where you can interact with fellow fans, drivers, and staff. You can also find Placerville Speedway on Twitter for schedule updates and more by following us @pvillespeedway. In addition, Placerville Speedway is now on Instagram. Please follow us @PvilleSpeedway.

Placerville Speedway is located on the El Dorado County Fairgrounds at 100 Placerville Drive in Placerville. The racing facility is operated by Russell Motorsports Incorporated, which can be reached at the track business office at 530-344-7592.

*Writing contributions by Dean Mills