T.J. SMITH STAYS HOT AT HANFORD
By Lance Jennings
HANFORD, CA – AUGUST 23,
2010… On another hot August night at Hanford's Giant
Chevrolet Kings Speedway, Fresno's T.J. Smith charged to the
30-lap feature win. While the race had some controversy, the
victory marked Smith's second triumph of the year with the
USAC West Coast 360 Sprint Car Series.
Clovis' Peter Murphy and Rusty
Carlile of Bakersfield shared the front row of the main event.
Murphy, who was looking for his first feature win of the year,
got the jump on Carlile and was in command over the twenty-one
car field. T.J. Smith, who started fourth, worked his way to
the front and challenged Peter for the lead in the early
going. Heading for the bottom line of the first turn, contact
between the two drivers knocked Murphy out of the race with
front end damage. "After those first two laps, me and
Peter got together. We race good every week and that was
really accidental. I feel horrible," remarked Smith.
As action resumed, Smith took
control and held off the challenges from defending series
champion Justyne Hamblin, "Hollywood" Danny Faria
Jr., and point leader Craig Stidham. Setting a blistering pace
on the Hanford clay, Smith was followed across the finish line
by Faria, Stidham, Hamblin, and Davey Pombo.
With the victory, T.J. Smith is
third in the series point standings. Driving Steve LeGras' UHL
Rubber #14 Maxim, the Fresno driver was sixth quick in time
trials and won the Competition Suspension Incorporated Heat
Race #3. To date, Smith has two feature victories, three fast
time awards, three heat race wins, and thirteen top-10
finishes on the season.
Faria Jr. of Tipton scored his third straight runner-up finish
after starting fifth in the main event. Sitting sixth in the
point standings, the pilot of the Louie DeGroot & Sons
Dairy #17V Maxim was fifth quick in time trials and finished
fourth in his heat race. Faria has one feature victory, five
fast time awards, six heat race wins, seven top-10 finishes,
and one hard charger award in the 2010 campaign.
With his third place finish,
Fresno's Craig Stidham holds a forty-nine point advantage over
Davey Pombo. Driving the Brad Johnson Trucking / KRC Safety
#3S Maxim, Stidham was second quick in time trials and
finished second in his heat race to Rusty Carlile. The former
California Rebel Cup Sprint Car champion has four feature
victories, one fast time award, eight heat race wins, fifteen
top-10 finishes, and one hard charger award on the year.
Hanford's Justyne Hamblin took
the JH Motorsports / Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino #8 Speed
Tech to a fourth place finish. Currently fourth in the point
standings, the defending series champion was seventh quick in
time trials and won the Extreme Mufflers Heat Race #1. Hamblin
has one feature victory, three heat race wins, eleven top-10
finishes, and three hard charger awards on the season.
Davey Pombo of Kerman earned
his third Sander Engineering Fast Time Award of the season.
The veteran driver finished second in his heat race to Justyne
Hamblin and was fifth in the main event. Piloting Junior
Bowman's #3 Buster & Ziggy sponsored Bullet, Pombo is
second in the point chase with two feature victories, four
heat race wins, fifteen top-10 finishes, and one hard charger
award in 2010.
Mariposa's Andy Ferris earned
his first King Racing Products Hard Charger Award with his
fourteenth place run. Earlier in the night, Ferris drove the
Matt & Glass Race Bodies / Frontier Fasteners #4J Jon Boy
in the companion 360 Winged Sprint Car division. After
finishing seventh in the feature, the veteran driver and crew
removed the wings to start at the back of the non-wing event.
Andy made the best of the opportunity and rebounded from a lap
4 tangle with three other cars. Ferris is currently twelfth in
the point standings with five top-10 finishes to his credit
Rusty Carlile of Bakersfield
won his fourth heat race of the year by winning the BR
Motorsports / Saldana Racing Products Heat Race #2. Last
year's Cotton Classic winner was eighth quick in time trials
and finished sixth in the main event. Currently seventh in the
point standings, Carlile has one fast time award, eleven
top-10 finishes, and one hard charger award on the season.
The USAC West Coast 360 Sprint
Car Series would like to thank Southwest Contractors, Hoosier
Tire, Amsoil, BR Motorsports, Competition Suspension, Cory
Kruseman's Sprint Car & Midget Driving School, Crow
Enterprizes, DJ Safety, Extreme Mufflers, Hilborn Fuel
Injection, Hinchman-Indy Racing Uniforms, Integra Shocks,
Kaeding Performance, Keizer Wheels, King Racing Products,
Kirkey Racing Fabrication, Port City Racing, Saferacer.com,
Saldana Racing Products, and Sander Engineering for their
Round 17 for the USAC West
Coast 360 Sprint Car Series will be this Saturday, August
28th, at the Santa Maria Speedway. The "Ron Otto
Memorial" is also the third round of the Southwest
Contractors 360 Clash. The four race mini-series will carry
it’s own $5000 point fund, with $2500 to the series winner,
$1500 for second, and $1000 for third. As this writing goes to
press, the main events will pay $1200 to win and $200 to
Santa Maria Speedway is located
at 1900 Hutton Road in Nipomo, California. Also on the card
will be Powder Puff Mini Stocks, NMRA TQ Midgets, and Outlaw
Sprint Karts on the mini-oval. The Front Gates will open at
5:00pm, Time Trials will start at 6:00pm, with Racing at
7:00pm. Adult tickets are $16, Senior, Military, and Student
tickets are $14, Kids tickets (6-12) are $5, and Children’s
tickets (5 and under) are FREE. For event information, please
visit www.racesantamariaspeedway.com or call (805) 922-2232.
For more information on the
USAC West Coast 360 Sprint Car Series, please visit
racesantamariaspeedway.com, or follow the series on facebook.
USAC WEST COAST 360 SPRINT RACE RESULTS:
Giant Chevrolet Kings Speedway - Hanford, California
August 21, 2010 - Race #16
SANDER ENGINEERING TIME TRIALS:
1. Davey Pombo, 3, Bowman-15.412; 2. Craig Stidham, 3S,
Stidham-15.474; 3. Richard VanderWeerd, 10,
VanderWeerd-15.602; 4. Jonathan Logan, 32, Evett/Logan-15.621;
5. Danny Faria Jr., 17V, Faria-15.627; 6. T.J. Smith, 14,
LeGras-15.645; 7. Justyne Hamblin, 8, JH-15.750; 8. Rusty
Carlile, 51, Carlile-15.765; 9. Peter Murphy, 11,
Bowman-15.891; 10. Ricky Kirkbride, 87, Van Meter-15.905; 11.
Jeff Gardner, 51T, Revcon-15.918; 12. Jace VanderWeerd, 88,
VanderWeerd-16.008; 13. Jesse Mack, 71M, Gilbert/Mack-16.062;
14. Koen Shaw, 88K, Shaw-16.228; 15. Chris Ennis, 86,
Ennis-16.489; 16. Dave Knott, 28, Knott-16.549; 17. Jerry Wise
Jr., 23, Wise-16.930; 18. Ray Knight, 99K, Knight-18.206; 19.
Jason Swaim, 52, Swaim-18.225; 20. Wes Gutierrez, 007, WG-NT,
21. Geoffrey Strole, 09S, Strole-NT.
EXTREME MUFFLERS HEAT RACE 1:
1. Justyne Hamblin, 2. Davey Pombo, 3. Jesse Mack, 4. Ricky
Kirkbride, 5. Dave Knott, 6. Jason Swaim, 7. Jonathan Logan.
BR MOTORSPORTS / SALDANA RACING
PRODUCTS HEAT RACE 2: (10 laps)
1. Rusty Carlile, 2. Craig Stidham, 3. Wes Gutierrez, 4. Danny
Faria Jr., 5. Jeff Gardner, 6. Koen Shaw, 7. Jerry Wise Jr.
COMPETITION SUSPENSION INC. /
KEIZER WHEELS HEAT RACE 3: (10 laps)
1. T.J. Smith, 2. Peter Murphy, 3. Chris Ennis, 4. Richard
VanderWeerd, 5. Geoffrey Strole, 6. Ray Knight. NT.
FEATURE: (30 laps - With
1. T.J. Smith (4th), 2. Danny Faria Jr. (5th), 3. Craig
Stidham (7th), 4. Justyne Hamblin (3rd), 5. Davey Pombo (8th),
6. Rusty Carlile (2nd), 7. Richard VanderWeerd (6th), 8. Chris
Ennis (11th), 9. Wes Gutierrez (12th), 10. Ricky Kirkbride
(9th), 11. Jesse Mack (10th), 12. Koen Shaw (16th), 13. Dave
Knott (17th), 14. Andy Ferris (22nd), 15. Geoffrey Strole
(21st), 16. Jerry Wise Jr. (18th), 17. Jason Swaim (20th), 18.
Jonathan Logan (13th), 19. Jeff Gardner (14th), 20. Ray Knight
(19th), 21. Peter Murphy (1st). NT.
**Jonathan Logan flipped during qualifications.
**Jace VanderWeerd did not start the feature, was scheduled to
**Andy Ferris tagged back of field in feature.
FEATURE LAP LEADERS:
Laps 1-2 Peter Murphy, Laps 3-30 T.J. Smith.
USAC WEST COAST 360 SPRINT
1-Craig Stidham-961; 2-Davey Pombo-912; 3-T.J. Smith-816;
4-Justyne Hamblin-737; 5-Peter Murphy-685; 6-Danny Faria
Jr.-671; 7-Rusty Carlile-646; 8-Richard VanderWeerd-585;
9-Jace VanderWeerd-562; 10-Chris Ennis-491.
NEXT USAC WEST COAST 360 SPRINT
August 28 – Santa Maria Speedway – Santa Maria, California
– “Ron Otto Memorial” - “Southwest Contractors 360