Copeland, Schank, Blackwood, & Winter Cop PS WinsRick Faeth
PETALUMA, CA – May 16
A brisk spring evening settled over the Petaluma Speedway Saturday Night. Where 14 winged 360’s took qualifying runs in the Pit Stop USA Series. Defending track champion Herman Klein turned the fastest lap to net quick time with a 12.795. The pair of 8 lap preliminary heats were garnered by third year veteran Colby Copeland and multi-time Civil War Champion Andy Forsberg. The 25-lap feature lineup saw a distinctly different track then the previous week, with a smooth and sealed over surface the order of the day. Billy Aton led from the outset from his front row starting spot. A quick spin by Joe Stornetta slowed the action on the third lap. On the ensuing restart Forsberg displaced Klein for second and set sight on Aton. On the move was Bradley Terrell from 8th starting position who moved by Klein for 4th on the fifth circuit. Lap seven saw Forsberg make a darting inside move at the flagstand on Aton as they both approached a soon to be lapped car. Contact saw the front wing of Aton with damage as he struggled to control the front end. The ninth lap saw Klein upside down and Eli Deshaies also flipping simultaneously but as separate incidents. Returning to action Copeland now seemed to have the measure of Terrell as the two diced briefly until Terrell’s night ended on the 16th lap with a flat tire. Finding moisture exiting turn four on the 19th lap was Copeland as he executed a textbook low-side pass of Forsberg. At the Scott Erwin twin checkers it was young Copeland parking the familiar Van Lare Family #5v into victory lane over Forsberg, rapidly improving Jason Toft, Alissa Geving, and Aton.
Fifteen Pit Stop USA Spec Sprints timed in with the Klint Simpson fastest with a 15.498 effort. The three heat race program saw Gary Nelson Jr., Shawn Jones, and rookie Alex Coronado triumphing. The 25-lap feature saw defending track champion Terry Schank Jr. rapidly pull away from the field as he clawed for moisture on the thin cushion. Jones was the runner up after several deft passes by the 7th circuit and Nelson was 3rd a lap later. Entering lapped traffic on the 12 stanza Schank had a seven second lead. From this point on Jones seemed to find another gear as he rapidly took bites out the deficit each lap. Exiting the second turn on the 22nd trip Jones drew even briefly as Schank used a lapper to set a pick. Holding on for the win was Schank over Jones, Simpson, Nelson, and Nick DeCarlo.
The Lumberjack Restaurant Super Stocks had another nice field of 17 competitors. Larry Drew and Mike Learn captured the pair of heat races. The main event saw current champ Brent Blackwood lead over Mitch Machado. Drew jumped to third on the 3rd circuit. The fifth lap saw Paul Hanley, Erick Veeninga, and Roger Miller tangle. On the restart Woody Woodward entered the top five. A great bumper to bumper battle between Blackwood, Machado, and Learn ensued inches away from one another until Learn clipped the turn four wall ending his run. At the finish it was point leader Blackwood narrowly holding off Machado for the win. Third was Studebaker over Matt While and Drew.
The Larsen Racing Products Dwarfs competed in a co-sanctioned event with the South Bay Dwarf Car Association which provided and excellent field of 21 cars. Shawn Jones doing double-duty, Ryan Winter, and Punky Pires grabbed heat race wins. After multiple single car and dual car shunts that stalled the action Pires emerged with the lead as the field found the high groove to their liking. Winter blasted by Pires on the tenth lap and covered the rest of the field to the 20-lap finish. Second was Pires over Kevin Miraglio, David Teves, and Dave Mosier.
Petaluma Speedway is dark on May 23rd and returns to action Saturday Night, May 30th featuring a Non-Wing 360 Sprint Car Event, the Larsen Racing Products Modifieds, Lumberjack Restaurant Super Stocks, Jake’s Performance Hobbies Mini Stocks, and Santa Rosa Auto Body 600’s. For more information please go to www.petaluma-speedway.com.