From Gary Thomas
The Cancen Oil King of the West Sprint Car Series presented by Goodyear will head for its lone event of the season at Ocean Speedway Watsonville this Saturday night July 7, for what will be the second annual “Howard Kaeding Classic.”
The show on Saturday will pay honor to the legendary racer from San Jose, who set the foundation for the famed Kaeding racing family.
Howard Kaeding was a multiple-time California state super-modified champion, a four-time Johnny Key Classic winner and once captured 17-straight races at the San Jose Speedway. The driver known as the “Campbell Comet” claimed over 300 main event victories in his career.
Continuing to lead the KWS point chase is Chico’s Jonathan Allard, who will be in search of his first career Ocean Speedway 410 victory on Saturday. The two-time Golden State 410 champion Jonathan Allard has been close in the past to winning at the quarter-mile and will look to seal the deal this weekend in Morrie & Katie Williams’ No. 0 sprinter.
Moving up to second now after his big win last weekend Campbell’s Brent Kaeding will be gunning to win his father’s race on Saturday at the Ocean Speedway. The Hall of Famer charged from 13th to first last weekend at Placerville Speedway to claim his first 410 victory since July of 2009 aboard the famed Al’s Roofing Supply No. 69 mount.
Defending “HK Classic” champion Evan Suggs now ranks third in the Cancen Oil KWS presented by Goodyear standings and will be searching for his win of the year on Saturday at his home track. The 24-year-old scored a popular victory last season at the event by claiming a thrilling 30-lapper over Tommy Tarlton and Bobby McMahan.
Elk Grove’s Bobby McMahan sits fourth in the KWS standings and is another one looking to breakthrough for his first win of the 2012 season. The former NARC Speedweek champion claimed a third place finish last season at the “Howard Kaeding Classic” and also ran fourth on opening night of the event.
Rounding out the top-five in points and just 11-markers behind McMahan for fourth is Clovis, CA’s Peter Murphy, who continues to climb the standings aboard the Dalton’s Landscaping No. 11 machine. The Australian native captured opening night of the Dirt Cup a few weeks back and will be trying for his first KWS win of the year on Saturday.
Rounding out the top-10 in the Cancen Oil KWS presented by Goodyear standings going into Saturday are former Mini Gold Cup winner Willie Croft from Sacramento, 2004 Golden State 410 titlist Jason Statler of Grass Valley, Placerville petting zoo owner Andy Gregg, San Jose’s Tim Kaeding and former Trophy Cup champ Craig Stidham of Fresno.
Other drivers set for action this Saturday at the “Howard Kaeding Classic” will include Fremont’s Shane Golobic, Easton’s Tommy Tarlton, Fair Oak’s Chad Compton, Prunedale’s Justin Sanders, Rio Linda’s Cody Lamar, Oakhurst’s Doug Gandy, Grass Valley’s Pat Harvey, Rio Vista’s Danielle Simpson and more.
On Saturday July 7 the program will start a little earlier than usual with the front gate opening at 3:30pm and qualifying scheduled to fire off around 5pm.
The Ocean Speedway is located on the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds, two miles east of Watsonville, California on SR 152. The physical address is 2601 East Lake Ave, Watsonville, CA 95076.
About the track:
The Ocean Speedway is semi-banked quarter mile clay oval with the King of the West unlimited 410 track record being 11.345, which was set by Scotts Valley’s Evan Suggs on August 5 of last year. The all-time track record was set by Mark Kinser in 2000 with a blistering 10.949.
Adult tickets on Saturday will cost $25, seniors will be $20 and kids are $16. All seating will be general admission.
Last season at the “Howard Kaeding Classic”:
The “Howard Kaeding Classic” last year featured a two-night KWS show and the opener saw Easton’s Tommy Tarlton make a lap 22 pass of Tim Kaeding to score his second series win of the season. T. Kaeding came home in second and Chico’s Jonathan Allard crossed the line in third to round out the podium. Completing the top-five were Bobby McMahan and Brad Furr.
The “HK Classic” finale ended in popular fashion with Scotts Valley’s Evan Suggs passing Tim Kaeding, Willie Croft and Tommy Tarlton to earn his first ever 410 Sprint Car victory. The exciting main event saw Tarlton, Bobby McMahan, T. Kaeding and Jason Statler complete top-five.
Top-15 in Cancen Oil KWS presented by Goodyear points going into Saturday:
1. Jonathan Allard 1939; 2. Brent Kaeding 1839; 3. Evan Suggs 1819; 4. Bobby McMahan 1788; 5. Peter Murphy 1777; 6. Willie Croft 1765; 7. Jason Statler 1761; 8. Andy Gregg 1758; 9. Tim Kaeding 1653; 10. Craig Stidham 1614; 11. Chad Compton 1425; 12. Doug Gandy 1273; 13. Pat Harvey 1217; 14. Kyle Hirst 1170; 15. Danielle Simpson 1109
Winners so far this season with KWS:
April 7 – Antioch Speedway Tim Kaeding;
April 21 – Marysville Raceway Park Jonathan Allard;
April 28 – Placerville Speedway Tim Kaeding;
May 5 – Silver Dollar Speedway Jonathan Allard;
May 11 – Tulare Thunderbowl Raceway Kyle Larson;
May 12 – Tulare Thunderbowl Raceway Rico Abreu;
May 26 – Calistoga Speedway Tim Kaeding;
May 27 – Calistoga Speedway Rico Abreu;
June 2 – Kings Speedway Bud Kaeding;
June 8 – Silver Dollar Speedway Jonathan Allard;
June 9 – Southern Oregon Speedway Tim Kaeding;
June 23 – Antioch Speedway Kyle Hirst;
July 7 – Placerville Speedway Brent Kaeding
Upcoming events for KWS:
Saturday July 7- Ocean Speedway “HK Classic”
Saturday July 21- Antioch Speedway
Saturday August 18 – Silver Dollar Speedway
On the internet:
Cancen Oil King of the West Sprint Car Series presented by Goodyear-
Official Website- http://www.oceanspeedway.com