Intermission was called and the water trucks were brought out to wheel pack the surface. And like everyone suspected, the rain set the stage for some great high-speed racing, a condition that favored a California driver.
“We’ve have a really fast car but kept running into trouble but finally everything went our way,” Jake Holland said after winning the Modified feature. “I backed off a little but there was no spot to pass me as I had the line. And I need to thank my parents, my brother Justin and fiance Lyndsay, who I’m going to marry in three weeks.”
“When the green waved on the nine-car field, Holland took off with Scotty Slatter giving chase. Due to their finishes last week both Shawn Natenstedt and Jay Sears had to start from the back.
The only caution came three laps into the race when Travis Peterson spun in Turn 4. Fortunately everyone missed his car when the field went roaring past.
“I just over cooked it into the corner,” Peterson said later.
When the green flew again Natenstedt, Robert Miller and Sears held the fourth, fifth and sixth spots. Up front Holland just took off and left everyone in his dust.
Lap after lap, Holland kept up his pace while Natenstedt slowly got past the traffic and began to close on the leader. When they got the white flag the gap was closed by Holland reached the checkered flag first with Natenstedt close behind in second.
Back in the pits Natenstedt said with a laugh, “I think I could have gotten past him if we had more laps, like 40. But by the time I got through the traffic I just couldn’t do it.”
On most nights, Jesse Gonzalez has ruled the Pro Stock class but this time Al Goss had different ideas. It only too a couple of laps before Goss claimed the lead and set sail away from the pack.
Just a lap later, Joe Specchio spun at the exit of turn 2 then was collected by Mike Prein, who apparently didn’t see the stalled car. While Specchio was less than pleased with the incident that damaged his car, both drivers emerged uninjured.
While Specchio was out for the night, Prein was able to limp into the pits, make repairs and return to the fray.
Once this race-stopping incident was cleared up racing resumed with Goss taking off followed by Chris Coclich, Jack Randall and B.J. Pearson. One more caution, with 14-laps to go, erased the advantage Goss had and bunched the cars.
Only four laps later, Pearson has closed to the back bumper of Goss and they began to dispute the lead. Unfortunately contact spun both cars and Goss had to pit and was unable to return.
The officials felt Pearson was guilty of rough driving and sent him to the pits. Now, with 11 laps to go Gonzalez took advantage of the situation and took second behind leader Dean Cichowicz.
Their duel lasted for a few laps until Gonzalez made the winning pass and stormed away to take the victory with Cichowicz not far behind.
“I didn’t think it was going to get it done,” Gonzalez said after the race. “I felt I would be lucky to be in the top five but that late race crash helped me a bunch. I do feel sorry for Al (Goss) as he had the race and we were off.”
As usual the Hobby Stock class had the largest field of the night with 25 cars taking the green flag. Three cautions slowed the pace but every time the green waved Bill Holloway was in command at the point.
Rocky Goetz and Jacob Baker gave a good account of themselves it early on it appeared the race was Holloway’s. However Sun Valley auto shop owner Rick Miller, who started in the middle of the pack, had other ideas.
As the race progressed, Miller picked off those ahead of him one by one. After the final caution, with three laps to go, Miller was in second and ready to pounce.
When the green waved, he and Holloway were off. Using an outside pass Miller grabbed the lead and would win the race with Holloway taking the runner-up spot.
“I started mid-pack and didn’t waste any time although I got bumped around in the pack,” Miller said later. “But I kept my foot in it, however the 11 car (Jacob Baker) passed me a few time. All the drivers in this class are so clean and try not to crash each other.”
While they may be small the Dwarf Cars make up for their lack of size with speed. And once again their main was marked by blazing speed as they tore around the oval.
First on point was Bobby Niles until Billy Wilson stormed past him. Niles later brought out the red flag after he went hard into the backstretch wall.
Fortunately he wasn’t injured but the same couldn’t be said for his car, as it had to be towed away. Up front Wilson was in command the entire way with Robert Wilson taking the runner-up spot.
So far 14-year-old Travis Barr has had the car to beat in the Pure Mini Stock division. However Al Bishop not only won the heat race but when the feature began held the point.
After the halfway point Barr was on Bishop’s tail and they staged a close battle for the lead. However with five laps to go the leaders caught a slower car and things got interesting.
Bishop chose the outside line and was almost spun due to contact with the lapper while Barr dove to the inside and found a clear lane through Turn 1. Bishop recovered but could not close the gap in the time remaining and had to settle for second as Barr took another victory.
Now the track goes dark until its next race on Saturday, June 4.
OTHER RACING NEWS
•This weekend Rattlesnake Raceway in Fallon returns to action, at 6 p.m. Saturday, hosting a night that features the regular classes, including IMCA Modifieds, Outlaw 360 Sprint Cars and kids rides.
•Desert Park Raceway, in Lemmon Valley, hosts a two-day visit by the Pro Kart series on Friday and Saturday with a probably start time of 10 a.m. to the first heat races. The Fernley Lions Motocross track, starting around 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday, will host the traditional Memorial Day round of the Over the Hill Gang Nationals.
•NASCAR’s Nevada Quartet was in action at the Charlotte Motor Speedway this weekend. Kyle Busch won Friday’s Camping World Truck event while both Brendan Gaughan and T.J. Bell were involved in a wreck that eliminated both trucks so they ended up 30th and 31st.
In Saturday night’s All Star Race Kyle, who earned the pole position, wound up second while older brother Kurt Busch finished 13th after starting the first segment 16th.
Reno-Fernley Raceway - May 21
Heat Winners - #1 41, #2 Jake Holland
Main - (25 Laps) - 1. Jake Holland, 2. Shawn Natenstedt, 3. Tom Purcell, 4. Robert Miller, 5. Don Childs
Heat Winners - #1 Joe Specchio, #2 Jesse Gonzalez
Main (25 Laps) - 1. Jesse Gonzalez, 2. Dean Chicowicz, 3. Matt Howell, 4. Scott Deutsch, 5. Chirs Coclich
Heat Winners - #1 Carl Barlow, #2 Brian Moore, #3 Rick Miller
Main (25 Laps) - 1. Rick Miller, 2. Bill Holloway, 3. Carl Barlow, 4. Dean Clark, 5. Jacob Baker
Heat Winners - #1 Robert Wilson, #2 Billy Wilson
Main (20 Laps) - 1. Billy Wilson, 2. Robert Wilson, 3. Roy Petersen, 4. Danyale Howard, 5. Glenn Sciarani
Pure Stock Minis:
Heat Winner - Al Bishop
Main (20 Laps) - 1. Travis Barr, 2. Al Bishop, 3. Justin Schilling, 4.Logan Cologna, 5. Mikayla Hancock