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by Lance Jennings

TULARE, CA – APRIL 21, 2013... After winning Friday’s USAC Western Classic race at Watsonville, Ryan Bernal of Hollister claimed Tulare’s USAC West Coast feature on Saturday. Starting fifth and taking the lead from Markus Niemela on lap sixteen, Bernal fought off repeated challenges by Danny Faria Jr. and Niemela for his series leading twelfth victory and third of the campaign. Richard Vander Weerd, Niemela, Marty Hawkins, and Rusty Carlile followed Ryan to the checkered flags.

Piloting the Keith Ford owned #73 King Racing Products / A&A Precision Machine Spike, Ryan Bernal was fourth quick overall, third in his heat race, and fifth in the dash. To date, the USAC West Coast point leader has three heat race victories, one Woodland Auto Display Dash win, one BR Motorsports / Racing Optics Hard Charger Award, seven top-5 finishes, and 54 feature laps led.

Visalia’s Richard Vander Weerd rebounded from a mid-race tangle to score second at the finish line. Racing the family owned #10 Vander Weerd Construction / Battery Worx Maxim, Richard earned his second Weld Racing Fast Time Award, ran second in his heat race, and was sixth in the dash. The 2011 Champion left Tulare second in points with two feature wins, one heat race victory, one Woodland Auto Display Dash win, one semi-main win, two BR Motorsports / Racing Optics Hard Charger Awards, six top-5 finishes, and 59 feature laps led.

After winning his first Woodland Auto Display Dash and leading the first fifteen laps, Markus Niemela of Rauma, Finland had to settle for third. Driving Steve Watt's #81 Christian Stover Foundation / Steve Watt Enterprises Maxim, Niemela qualified sixth and won the 10-lap DJ Safety Heat Race #2. The hard charging driver is currently sixth in the standings with two heat race victories, three top-5 finishes, and 25 feature laps led to his credit.

Santa Rosa’s Marty Hawkins had his best run of the season with a fourth place finish after starting seventh. Piloting his #3M Blakeley Landscaping / Toiyabe Group Eagle, Hawkins qualified ninth, won the Extreme Mufflers Heat Race #1, and was seventh in the dash. Currently, the young driver sits ninth in the point standings with one top-5 finish on the season.

“The Bakersfield Bullet” Rusty Carlile came home fifth at the checkered flags. Racing his #51 Southwest Contractors / N.T.S. Incorporated Bullet, Carlile was eleventh fast, third in his heat race, and fourth in the dash. The veteran driver is seventh in points with three top-5 finishes and 13 feature laps led on the year. Rusty will be ready to compete in front of his hometown fans on Saturday.

Trent Carter of Terra Bella earned his first BR Motorsports / Racing Optics Hard Charger Award with a sixth place run after starting fifteenth. Driving the family owned #13 Porterville Lock & Safe / Porterville Collision Center KB entry, Carter qualified fifteenth and was eighth in his heat race. The Rookie of the Year candidate is sixteenth in the standings with two top-10 finishes in the campaign.

The USAC West Coast Sprint Car Series will return to action this Saturday, April 27th, at Bakersfield Speedway. The popular Sport Mods, Mini Stocks, and CDCRA Dwarf Cars will join the night’s showcase. Advance tickets are on sale and for more information, visit www.bakersfieldspeedway.com or call 661.393.3373.

The USAC West Coast Sprint Car Series would like to thank Southwest Contractors, Hoosier Tire, Amsoil, BR Motorsports, Chris Kearns Presents, Competition Suspension Inc., DJ Safety, Diversified Machine Inc., Extreme Mufflers, Five Star Grafix, Kaeding Performance, Keizer Wheels, King Racing Products, Racing Optics, Rod End Supply, Rugged Radios, SBI Fuel Systems, Saldana Racing Products, Weld Racing, 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 lwjennings@earthlink.net.

For more information on the USAC West Coast Sprint Car Series, visit www.westcoastsprintcars.com, www.usacracing.com, or follow the series on Facebook (www.facebook.com/#!/pages/USAC-West-Coast-Sprint-Car-Series/369549755817).
April 20, 2013 – Tulare, California – Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway

1. Richard Vander Weerd, 10, Vander Weerd-15.329; 2. Danny Faria Jr., 17V, Faria-15.367; 3. Jace Vander Weerd, 88, Vander Weerd-15.453; 4. Ryan Bernal, 73, Ford-15.499; 5. Dennis Howell, 62, Howell-15.570; 6. Markus Niemela, 81, Watt-15.716; 7. Greg Alexander, 13a, Rickard-15.882; 8. Jeff Sibley, 18, Watt-16.046; 9. Marty Hawkins, 3M, Hawkins-16.063; 10. Landon Hurst, 179, Hurst-16.130; 11. Rusty Carlile, 51, Carlile-16.228; 12. Ricky Kirkbride, 87, Van Meter- 16.332; 13. Jonathan Logan, 32, Evett/Logan-16.356; 14. Seth Hancock, 51s, Hancock-16.597; 15. Trent Carter, 13, Carter-16.649; 16. Kevin Barnes, 36B, Barnes-16.661; 17. Jim Richardson, 8, Richardson-16.891.

1. Marty Hawkins, 2. Richard Vander Weerd, 3. Rusty Carlile, 4. Jace Vander Weerd, 5. Greg Alexander, 6. Dennis Howell, 7. Jonathan Logan, 8. Trent Carter, 9. Jim Richardson. NT

DJ SAFETY HEAT RACE 2: (10 laps)
1. Markus Niemela, 2. Danny Faria Jr., 3. Ryan Bernal, 4. Landon Hurst, 5. Ricky Kirkbride, 6. Kevin Barnes, 7. Seth Hancock, 8. Jeff Sibley. NT

1. Markus Niemela, 2. Landon Hurst, 3. Jace Vander Weerd, 4. Rusty Carlile, 5. Ryan Bernal, 6. Richard Vander Weerd, 7. Marty Hawkins, 8. Danny Faria Jr. NT

FEATURE: (30 laps - With Starting Positions)
1. Ryan Bernal (5th), 2. Richard Vander Weerd (6th), 3. Markus Niemela (1st), 4. Marty Hawkins (7th), 5. Rusty Carlile (4th), 6. Trent Carter (15th), 7. Dennis Howell (9th), 8. Danny Faria Jr. (8th), 9. Jace Vander Weerd (3rd), 10. Landon Hurst (2nd), 11. Greg Alexander (10th), 12. Ricky Kirkbride (12th), 13. Jonathan Logan (13th), 14. Jim Richardson (17th), 15. Seth Hancock (14th), 16. Kevin Barnes (16th). NT
**Jeff Sibley flipped during the second heat. Did not start feature, slated to start 11th.
**Seth Hancock, Landon Hurst, Greg Alexander and Danny Faria Jr. flipped during the feature.

FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-15 Markus Niemela, Laps 16-30 Ryan Bernal.

1. Ryan Bernal-332; 2. Richard Vander Weerd-308; 3. Jace Vander Weerd-277; 4. Danny Faria Jr.-267; 5. Bud Kaeding-242; 6. Markus Niemela-240; 7. Rusty Carlile-218; 8. Ricky Kirkbride-185; 9. Marty Hawkins-168; 10. Landon Hurst-151; 11. Austin Liggett-139; 12. Jonathan Logan-136; 13. Chris Ennis-130; 14. Kevin Barnes-116; 15. Andy Ferris-115; 16. Trent Carter-111; 17. Jeff Sibley-103; 18. Brody Roa-97; 19. Dennis Howell-93; ---.Matt Day-93.

April 27: Bakersfield Speedway - Bakersfield, CA
May 11: Kings Speedway - Hanford, CA (Billet Cup)
June 8: Kings Speedway - Hanford, CA
June 22: Santa Maria Speedway - Santa Maria, CA (Bud Stanfield Memorial)
July 6: Santa Maria Speedway - Santa Maria, CA (Doug Fort Memorial)
July 20: Kings Speedway - Hanford, CA
August 3: Kings Speedway - Hanford, CA (Jim Evett Memorial)
September 7: Bakersfield Speedway - Bakersfield, CA
September 20: Kings Speedway - Hanford, CA (Jim Turner Memorial)
September 21: Thunderbowl Raceway - Tulare, CA (John Anthony Sharp Memorial)
September 28: *Canyon Speedway Park - Peoria, AZ (Brawl For It All / $2,500-to-Win / Grudge Series / Non-Points)
October 12: Kings Speedway - Hanford, CA (Cotton Classic)
October 31: *Perris Auto Speedway - Perris, CA (Oval Nationals / $2,500-to-Win / Grudge Series / Non-Points)
November 14: *Canyon Speedway Park - Peoria, AZ (Western World Championships / Non-Points)
November 15: *Canyon Speedway Park - Peoria, AZ (Western World Championships / Non-Points)
November 16: *Canyon Speedway Park - Peoria, AZ (Western World Championships / $7,500-to-Win / Non-Points)
* = Co-Sanctioned Event With USAC Southwest Sprints.
This schedule is subject to change.