Ringo, Simpson, While Have NAPA ‘Know How’Rick Faeth
PETALUMA, CA – Aug 15
By Rick Faeth
Petaluma Auto Parts – NAPA Night at the races in conjunction with the River 97.7 FM saw unseasonably warm temperatures as well as a fast hooked up track conditions Saturday Night. Round #3 of the Pit Stop USA Shootout Series got under way with Andy Forsberg nabbing fast time with a solid 12.354 lap to outpace the field of 16 winged 360’s. Defending track champion Herman Klein and second generation youngster Dave Lindt Jr. were heat race winners. The 25-lap, $2,000 to win feature saw Lindt stall on the first lap with mechanical gremlins and Eli Deshaies loop his mount on the second stanza. Lap three through twelve saw front row starter and visiting driver Nick Ringo III take command of the race. On the move was Bradley Terrell as he went low and then high to displace Jason Toft, Klein, and Forsberg to enter the top three as most of the field struggled with tight conditions. A fantastic wheel-to-wheel battle ensued between Terrell and Jake Haulot for second as Ringo calmly dealt with lapped traffic. A dicey move by Terrell got him to second on lap 22 but time had run out as an excited Ringo parked his mount on the front straightaway to garner his first ever sprint car win. Rounding out the top five were: Terrell, Haulot, Forsberg, and Toft.
The Pit Stop USA Spec Sprints signed in with 14 cars and saw veteran Jimmy Christian top the qualifying speed chart with a solid 14.294 effort. Palo Cedro’s Casey McClain, and Martinez’ Nick DeCarlo Jr. notched the 8-lap hearts. The $1,000 to win 25-lap feature looked to be going non-stop as everyone was seeing the tail end of Christian’s well-prepared #1c. However on lap 23 exiting turn four a gaggle of cars came together that included Brian Azevedo, Brett Barney, Adam Christian, and heartbreakingly collected the leader which cost him an almost assured win. Inheriting the lead on the restart was point leader Klint Simpson who was a solid second behind Christian on the previous long green flag run. At the checkers it was Simpson with the victory over DeCarlo, McClain, Sparky Howard, and then Christian.
The Lumberjack Restaurant Super Stocks saw former track champion Mike Learn and sophomore sensation Danny Naron copping the pair of heat races. The 25-lap finale saw Learn lead thru four circuits. A good battle developed from a recently resurgent Matt While as he first challenged and then bested Learn for the lead. Favorites Mitch Machado, Larry Drew, and Gary Adams were all retired as Paul Hanley spun on lap 10. Next it was Brent Blackwood’s turn to draw caution with an engine compartment fire. Setting a fine pace to the Scott Erwin twin checkers was While for his second straight win over Learn, Woody Woodward, Steve Studebaker, and Trevor Brady.
The Larsen Racing Products Dwarfs saw point leader and defending track champion Dave Mosier win the first heat as former track champion Travis Dutra collected the second. In the 20-lap feature it was Mosier incredibly keeping pace with Nick DeCarlo’s record setting season in the IMCA Modifieds as they both have 7 wins. Second for the second week in a row was John Peters, over Dutra, Carroll Mendenhall, and Danny Marsh.
The Jake’s Performance Hobbies Mini Stocks saw the recent domination of Bullet Bob Davis continue as he captured not only the heat race but also the 20-lap main event over veterans Eden McCormick and Snazzy Duckworth. Fourth and fifth were rookies Sid Hess and Zack Albers.
Petaluma Speedway returns to action Saturday Night, August 22nd featuring the Pit Stop USA Winged 360’s the Larsen Racing Products IMCA Modifieds, twin 25-lap dwarf car features and the Jake’s Performance Hobbies Mini Stocks. For more information please go to www.petaluma-speedway.com.