NARC NEWSLINE – JUNE 8, 2021

June 7, 2021 Jim Allen

NARC NEWSLINE – JUNE 8, 2021, By Jim Allen …  Some sprint car drivers go their entire racing careers without ever experiencing the thill of victory lane.  Some finally hang up their helmet after only one or two wins over a career that last a decade.  It’s not for a lack of trying as much as it’s just plain hard to do.  The car needs to be darn near perfect, the driver must be on his A-Game, and a little luck always helps.  In other words, a lot of stars need to align, which brings us to Dominic Scelzi at the May 14-15 Peter Murphy Classic.  He didn’t win just once, not twice, not three times, but an almost unfathomable four times in two nights.  A career weekend for many.  In the revised PMC track format, Scelzi scored a Sprint Car Challenge Tour 360 win and Kings of Thunder 410 victory at Hanford on Friday night.  Then he backed that up the next night at Tulare with top honors in the Kings of Thunder 360 feature and the grand finale – the $11,000 to win Peter Murphy Classic for the NARC King of the West Fujitsu 410 Sprint Cars.  What are the odds?  A single renegade rut, a slip in qualifying, a brush with the wall, a flat tire, or just a bad hair day can totally ruin everything and end the streak.  While the King of the West record books will only officially show only one victory on May 15th, anybody who attended — and there were a lot of you — will remember the weekend that Dominic Scelzi lived up to his nickname (Dominator.) 

Speaking of capacity crowds, it is so nice to see California returning back to normal.  The ecstatic fans at Hanford and Tulare were stoked to see some “live” sprint car racing..  And the drivers and teams were glad they were back as well.  Racing without fans is like playing video games in the bathroom – empty, hollow, and doesn’t smell right.

PETER MURPHY CLASSIC NOTESMAY 15th:  Said Scelzi at Tulare after setting quick time, “I got hurt here and I’m looking to redeem my myself.”  For those of you who might have forgot, Scelzi broke his back at Tulare a few years back and was going to give up the sport.  However, he said Peter Murphy encouraged him to recover and move forward.  Scelzi’s voice cracked with emotion during victory lane interviews and it was hard not to notice that one of the first people Scelzi hugged upon exiting his #41 sprint car was Peter MurphyBud Kaeding made Scelzi work for his big win at Tulare.  He led the first 23-laps, trading slide jobs, until Scelzi took the point.  At that point, Kaeding struggled and dropped to fourth.  Shane Golobic was second ($5000) and 11th starter Willie Croft ($3000) was a bullet in the late going to finish third. … Speaking of Golobic, he was on “baby-watch” all weekend, ready to depart at a moments notice.  But like a true racing champ, new son Tucker held out until Monday. … Twenty-two of the 24-starters finished on the lead lap.  It paid $1,000 to start the feature. …

Billy Aton earned the Swift Metal Finishing Hardcharger award, starting 20th and ending up 10th.  While on the topic of Anton, he officially threw his name into the running for the NARC-King of the West Rookie of the Year award. … NARC driver Ronnie Day built a successful sprint car resume’ in his day, but he admitted things have changed recently.  He is no longer known as Ronnie Day, but as Corey Day’s dad.  Corey and Joel Myers Jr. happen to be the two biggest “up and comers” in the Golden State and their DMV Learners Permit will tell you they are only 15-years old.  Think about that for a second!  Hopefully they don’t get pulled out of California too soon to race back East. … Chase Johnson was down and out on Saturday after hurting his only 410 motor on Friday night at Hanford.  Being a car owner sucks sometimes.  He needs a full-time ride. … The PMC featured the Aussie Pole Shuffle.  In case you missed it, it went like this:  Sean Becker outran Kasey Kahne and won the next shuffle when Kyle Hirst was DQ’ed for a jump.  Bud Kaeding was next in line and beat Becker and Golobic in separate skirmishes, before losing to Scelzi in the finale.  Always exciting; always unpredictable.  …

… Iowa driver Austin McCarl was involved in a multi-car feature crash that did a number on the Tarlton Motorsports 21.  He was unhurt in the red flag incident. … Scelzi earned more than $20,000 for the weekend with all of the extra cash put up.  Thanks to Kimo’s Tropical Car Wash and Norm Rapp, Scelzi pocketed $1500 for his two fast time efforts on Saturday.  He also picked up a $600 bonus from Hanford Jewelry & Loan for claiming the Pole Shuffle.  Scelzi first investment might be on a bigger wallet.  They money will also come in handy for baby gear and diapers since he is going to become a new Dad soon.  On the flip side, Scelzi gave away all 18-pounds of Sunnyvalley Bacon he won to a pair of lucky fans.  …  As always, we are grateful to the one and only legend Peter Murphy for all of his contributions to the sport and for promoting a great two-race weekend with Tulare lead man Steve Faria. …

PETALUMA SPEEDWAY NOTES – MAY 22nd:  Justin Sanders, who is chasing a NARC-KWS title this season, was looking to improve on his 11th and eighth place finishes at the first two events of the year.  He finally got his ducks in a row and scored the elusive “W” at Petaluma aboard Larry Antaya‘s #16 XXX sprint car.  Sanders even set quick time, which he admitted is more rare than a tax break in California.  The seventh King of the West victory and the 100th of his career was worth $3500. …

… The start of this feature caused more finger-pointing than an investigation at a Pennsylvania ballot box.  Dash winner Andy Forsberg and Sanders started on the front row and it went downhill from there on the initial start as they powered out of the fourth corner.  Sanders and Forsberg got together.  Before it was over, Forsberg, Tim Kaeding, Dominic Scelzi, Kyle Offill, Michael Sellers were reeled in and Sean Becker escaped most of the carnage by flying over the infield berm with a wild Baja Trophy Truck maneuver.  It wasn’t pretty in any sense of the word and tempers got heated.  Sanders made it through intact, but Forsberg’s night in the upside down family A&A Stepping Stone 92 was over.  On a lighter note, hopefully nine pounds of Sunnyvalley Bacon made for a good breakfast the next morning at the Forsberg household. … Scelzi and Kaeding made quick repairs under red flag conditions to restart at the back and finished fifth and seventh respectively to stay in the championship points hunt. …

… Once the feature restarted, it went 30-laps non-stop in around seven-minutes, with Sanders sharing the podium with Bud Kaeding and the aforementioned Joel Myers Jr.  Nine cars finished on the lead lap. …  Kalib Montgomery surprised some driving the Scott-Ingraham #93.  With Stephen Ingraham out with other plans, Montgomery took over and did his own version of sprint car shock and awe.  He timed in eighth quick and finished a very respectable sixth in the feature — driving a 360-powered machine. …  Ryan Robinson looked right at home driving the Mike Phulps #56 car.  He timed in second quick and finished 10th in the main. … This racing program was completed at 8:36 p.m., or as my wife likes to say, “before the mall closed across the street.”

NARC NOTES:  A front wing autographed by the 410 Peter Murphy Classic competitors was auctioned off for the NARC Benevolent Fund at Tulare.  It raised $750 for the fund.  Thank you Mike Vidal. Also, a sincere thank you to Rick Faeth/Glad Enterprises, “Big Kevin,” and Nancy Truex for their generous donations to the NARC Benevolent Fund also! …  California lost two more quality drivers to another part of the United States with Geoff and wife Shayna Ensign moving to Idaho.  Geoff’s best run with NARC was in 2019 when he ran the entire schedule, finished fifth in points, and earned the rookie-of-the-year award. … We have added a Friday, July 23rd event to the 2021 schedule.  It will take place at the Tulare Thunderbowl Raceway, which will make it a two-race weekend with Santa Maria Raceway hosting a Saturday night show. The Tulare race will be the “Chris & Brian Faria Memorial.”  Saturday’s show features a wheelie contest! … Have you checked out the nice “Pit Personalities” article on crew chief Drew Warner on NARC410.com?  You should! …  All of our races are available on FloRacing.com.  However, we would prefer to see you in person.  So would the track promoters! …  Pick up your official 2021 NARC King of the West t-shirt at the Bullet Impressions trailer or online at www.onefasttee.com. …

UPCOMING EVENTS:  We have another premium weekend of open wheel racing on tap for June 11-12th.  This is a bullring doubleheader with the NARC King of the West Fujitsu Sprint Car Series rolling into Ocean Speedway and Placerville Speedway.  Friday’s show in Watsonville will mark the 35th Annual running of the Pombo-Sargent Classic.  On Saturday, the series heads east up Highway 50 to the El Dorado County Fairgrounds for the highly anticipated 30th Annual Dave Bradway Jr. Memorial.  Thanks to the efforts of Dianne and Dave Durica, and the love and support of fans and sponsors of the Bradway event, this one is super lucrative.  It will pay $5000 to the winner of the 40-lapper.  Just think about that for a second … a 40-lapper at Placerville, where your typical 10-second lap has more excitement than a three-legged cat being chased by a pack of hungry coyotes.  There is also $5200 in lap money for the A & B-mains and the “Carwash” Mike Avilla Fast Time Award pays $1350.  And not to sound like an infomercial — “but wait, there is more!”  The Hardcharger payout is up to $1800 and if you read this a couple days from now, probably more!  Heat winners will score Hoosier RR rubber from Hoserville CA, plus there are a bunch of other donations for a variety of finishing positions.  It promises to be another great weekend and we wouldn’t expect nothing less.

Coming to you live from Auburn, CA.  See ya!

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