USAC West Coast Sprints Ready for Thunderbowl Raceway Double Header this Weekendadmin
USAC WEST COAST SPRINTS CLASH AT TULARE FRIDAY & SATURDAY
By Lance Jennings
MARCH 6, 2018… After two successful nights at Las Vegas, the USAC West Coast Sprint Cars are back in action this Friday (March 9) and Saturday (March 10) at Tulare, California’s Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway. The famed World of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Cars will headline both point races and the Legends of Kearney Bowl Vintage Cars will join Saturday’s card. The front gates will open at 4:00pm, time trials at 6:00pm, with racing scheduled for 7:00pm on both nights. For more event information, visit the track’s website at www.tularethunderbowl.com or call 559.688.0909.
NOTICE TO RACERS: The Hoosier 105/16 Medium is the ONLY legal right rear tire and all four corners must be Hoosier. Cockpit adjustable shocks are NOT allowed and engine restrictor rules are 1-7/8” with open heads and 2-3/16” with ASCS cylinder heads. The weight rule is 1,475 lbs. with driver and the USAC West Coast Sprint Car Rule Book can be found online at www.westcoastsprintcars.com and www.usacracing.com. USAC MEMBERSHIPS can be purchased at the track or online at https://usacracing.redpodium.com/2018-usac-sprint-midget-sc.
2018 APPROVED/LEGAL MUFFLERS:
EXTREME: 6014-3535, 3615-3535
SCHOENFELD: 14272535, 14272735-78
FLOWMASTER: 53545-10, 13516100, 13516101
COAST FABRICATION: 350x625x17-2S
SPINTECH: 1545P SUPER STOCK
*Failure to comply with the muffler rule will risk disqualification from the event.
Since March 6, 2010, the Tulare County Fairgrounds has hosted thirty-seven USAC West Coast Sprint Car races. Ryan Bernal leads all drivers with thirteen victories and Jake Swanson holds the 1-lap qualifying record of 14.984, set on March 17th. Last season, Bernal (twice), Kyle Hirst, and Swanson took the checkered flags at the fast 1/3-mile oval. The series win list at the Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway is at the bottom of this release.
Driving three different cars, Jake Swanson (Anaheim, California) earned last year’s USAC West Coast Sprint Car championship. Starting the year in Tom and Laurie Sertich’s #92 Moose Racing Triple X, Swanson also piloted the Larry Henry / Tony Jones #41 DRC and Matt Dale’s #12 Maxim before claiming the title. Last week, the defending champion piloted John Grau’s #34 Western Premier Hauling Maxim to a fifth and ninth place finish at Las Vegas. Jake will miss the Tulare doubleheader to compete with USAC/CRA in Peoria, Arizona.
Despite missing a few races, Austin Liggett (Tracy, California) finished second in the chase for the championship. Racing the family owned #83 Excel Environmental Services / Lucas Oil Maxim, Liggett had three feature wins, two Woodland Auto Display Fast Time Awards, three heat race victories, two BR Motorsports / King Racing Products Hard Charger Awards, twelve top-10 finishes, and 64 feature laps led on the year. Austin ranks ninth on the win list and will have his sights on his sixth career victory.
Tristan Guardino (Fremont, California) ranked third in last year’s USAC West Coast point standings. Driving the family owned #15T Dorso’s Automotive / Allied Auto Sales Maxim, Guardino scored one feature win, four heat race victories, eleven top-10 finishes, and 52 feature laps led on the season. Tristan has three career wins and will be looking to sweep the Tulare doubleheader.
“Hollywood” Danny Faria Jr. (Tipton, California) ran fourth in the championship point chase. Piloting his #17V Buster & Ziggy Enterprises / DeBoer & Sons Trucking Spike, Faria posted one feature win, eight heat race victories, one pole shuffle win, ten top-10 finishes, and 62 feature laps to his credit. The two-time (2013, 2015) champion is tied with Bryan Clauson for fourth in series wins and will have his sights on his eleventh victory.
Max Adams (Loomis, California) had a strong season and placed fifth in the West Coast point chase. Racing his #5M ART Speed Equipment / Ken Imler Diesel Performance ART, Adams had one feature win, two Woodland Auto Display Fast Time Awards, a new Santa Maria track record, one heat race victory, one Competition Suspension Incorporated / Rod End Supply Semi-Main win, ten top-10 finishes, and 26 feature laps led. The 2016 USAC/CRA Rookie of the Year has one series win and will be looking to add Tulare to his resume.
Ryan Bernal, Richard Vander Weerd, Ryan Timmons, Brandon Wiley, Jace Vander Weerd, Steve Hix, Cody Majors, Shannon McQueen, Ryan Stolz, “The Human Highlight Reel” Geoff Ensign, Kyle Smith, “The Milkman” Joe Stornetta Jr., Steven Garris, Jeff Sibley, and Cory Elliott rounded out the top-20 in last year’s points.
At press time, Britton Bock (Calistoga, California), Austin Ervine (Bakersfield, California) and Dalton Hill (Madera, California) are contending for rookie of the year honors.
Tulare, California’s Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway is located at the Tulare County Fairgrounds at the corner of Bardsley and K Streets. Friday Grandstand Tickets are $45, Bleacher Seats are $40, and all seats are RESERVED. Saturday Grandstand Tickets are $50 and, Bleacher Seats are $45. Advance tickets are on sale and can be purchased by calling the track office at 559.688.0909. For more event information, visit the track’s website at www.tularethunderbowl.com.
The USAC West Coast Sprint Car Series thanks AMSOIL, Hoosier Tire, BR Motorsports, ButlerBuilt Professional Seat Systems, Chris Kearns Presents, Extreme Mufflers, Keizer Aluminum Wheels, King Racing Products, Pyrotect Racing Cells, Rod End Supply, Saldana Racing Products, Ultra Shield Race Products, and Woodland Auto Display for their support. If you or your company would like to become part of the series, email PR Director Lance Jennings at email@example.com.
For more information, visit www.westcoastsprintcars.com, and www.usacracing.com. You can also find exclusive content on the USAC West Coast Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages.
Loudpedal Productions has USAC West Coast Sprint Car DVDs and videos on demand available for purchase at www.loudpedal.tv and 805.407.7229.
USAC WEST COAST SPRINT CAR CHAMPIONS:
2009-Justyne Hamblin, 2010-Craig Stidham, 2011-Richard Vander Weerd, 2012-Bud Kaeding, 2013-Danny Faria Jr., 2014-Matt Mitchell, 2015-Danny Faria Jr., 2016-Brody Roa, 2017-Jake Swanson.
2018 USAC WEST COAST SPRINT CAR WINS:
1-Dennis Gile, 1-Brody Roa.
TULARE USAC WEST COAST SPRINT WINS:
13-Ryan Bernal, 5-Bud Kaeding, 3-Richard Vander Weerd, 2-D.J. Johnson, 2-Kyle Larson, 2-Craig Stidham, 1-Dean Alexander, 1-Danny Faria Jr., 1-Kyle Hirst, 1-Dennis Howell, 1-Austin Liggett, 1-Matt Mitchell, 1-Peter Murphy, 1-Troy Rutherford, 1-Jake Swanson, 1-Jace Vander Weerd.
2018 USAC WEST COAST SPRINT CAR SCHEDULE
March 9: Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA
March 10: Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA
April 7: Keller Auto Speedway at Kings Fairgrounds – Hanford, CA
April 28: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA
May 12: Keller Auto Speedway at Kings Fairgrounds – Hanford, CA
May 18: Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA (Peter Murphy Classic)
May 19: Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA (Peter Murphy Classic)
June 2: Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA (Chris & Brian Faria Memorial)
June 9: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA (Ron Otto Memorial)
June 30: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Battle at the Beach)
July 14: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Battle at the Beach)
July 28: Bakersfield Speedway – Bakersfield, CA
August 11: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA (Bud Stanfield Memorial)
August 25: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Battle at the Beach)
October 6: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA (Championship Night)
November 21: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Turkey Night Grand Prix / Non-Points)
November 22: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Turkey Night Grand Prix / Battle at the Beach / Non-Points)
Pic courtesy Chucko’s Photos