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Kyle Larson leads California podium sweep at Sharon Speedway

Kyle Larson
Mudclodbob photo

By Tyler Altmeyer

HARTFORD, OH (June 20, 2017) – Elk Grove, California’s Kyle Larson picked up right where he left off on Monday evening, this time scoring a second consecutive Ohio Sprint Speedweek presented by Cometic Gasket main event victory during competition at Sharon Speedway in Hartford, Ohio, ultimately holding off a pair of California natives for a $5,000 top prize.

Larson, who started sixth on the Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions feature grid, wasted no time working his way to the front of the feature field. The pilot of the Paul Silva-owned/Finley Farms/No. 57 moved around early leader Rico Abreu on lap four, eventually withstanding multiple waves of traffic, as well as mid-race and late race charges from Abreu and Carson Macedo. The Arctic Cat All Star victory was the sixth of Larson’s career with all six occurring during Ohio Sprint Speedweek presented by Cometic Gasket.

“It’s really cool to win this race a year after Bryan Clauson won this race. The Clauson family means a lot to me,” Kyle Larson explained. “Paul Silva really made some big improvements tonight. He tried some things in the dash, but we were really slow. He made some more changes and they really worked out. Hats off to Paul. He’s the smartest guy in the pit area.”

Kyle Larson was in charge, but the battle for second and third may have attracted just as much attention. Rico Abreu and Carson Macedo battled for nearly half of the entire 30-lap distance, exchanging positions and sliders on multiple occasions. Despite lap after lap of position swapping and slide job attempts, Macedo did not officially overtake Abreu for the runner-up position until lap 23.

“I had a lot of fun here tonight,” Macedo said, pilot of the Lucas Oil/Weld Wheels/Gaerte Engines by Topp Performance Race Parts/No. 3G. “This ended up being such an awesome race track. If you would have told me it was going to be that good at the beginning of the night, I would have never believed it. This team gave me a great car. Kyle Larson is the best right now. To run second to him, we’ll take that and move forward. I’m pretty happy. Everything is going pretty well for this team.”

A caution on lap 22 was the only pause during the Ohio Sprint Speedweek program. Despite the sudden stop in momentum, Larson used the restart to his advantage and instantly opened his lead to over two seconds. One last surge by Macedo with a few circuits remaining closed the gap, but Larson still crossed under the final checkers 1.25 seconds ahead of the running order.

“This dirt was great, too,” Larson explained. “You could run from the inside tires to the outside wall. I actually looked up at the scoreboard at one point and noticed that Macedo got around Abreu, so I knew he had to be pretty good because I saw Abreu’s nose a few times racing below me. I thought I was running a pretty good line which was going to make it hard for Macedo to pass me. I have no idea where he was running, whether it was on the top or bottom. Regardless, it’s pretty cool to have a California podium sweep here.”

Negating a prior statement, when the Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions return to Sharon Speedway on July 8 for the annual Lou Blaney Memorial, race teams will compete for a $5,000 top prize, not the recently stated $10,000.

Ohio Sprint Speedweek presented by Cometic Gasket will continue on Wednesday evening, June 21, with a visit to the Waynesfield Raceway Park near Waynesfield, Ohio. An event originally scheduled for Sunday, June 18, the fifth round of Ohio Sprint Speedweek will feature the Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions for the tenth time in Waynesfield Raceway Park history, most recently during the 2016 edition of Ohio Sprint Speedweek when Wooster, Ohio’s Sheldon Haudenschild earned the $5,000 share.

Waynesfield Raceway Park will open pit gates at 3:00pm tomorrow afternoon, June 21, with main gates to follow at 5:00pm. Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions competition will begin with hot laps at 6:00pm, followed by racing at 7:00pm, sharp. Those who cannot attend should tune-in live on www.thecushion.com. A pay-per-view broadcast will be available for purchase which will include the entire evening program.

Contingency Awards/Results: Sharon Speedway – Tuesday, June 20, 2017:
Ohio Sprint Speedweek presented by Cometic Gasket
EMi Driver’s Meeting: 48 entries
State Water Heaters Warm-Ups: Tim Shaffer – 13.931 seconds
Lincoln Electric Fast Qualifier: Tim Shaffer – 15.496 seconds (2nd Quick)
Ford Performance Heat #1: Rico Abreu
All Pro Aluminum Cylinder Heads Heat #2: Kyle Larson
Hunt Brothers Pizza Heat #3: Ryan Smith
Daido Engine Bearings Heat #4: Carson Macedo
Elliott’s Custom Trailers and Carts C-Main: Roger Campbell
JE Pistons Dash #1: Rico Abreu
Kistler Racing Products Dash #2: Tim Shaffer
Classic Ink USA B-Main: Dave Blaney
Daido Engine Bearings Main Event Winner: Rico Abreu (3rd)
MSD Performance Hard Charger Award: Caleb Helms (+9)
Outback Steakhouse A-Main 5th Place Finisher: Danny Dietrich
Outback Steakhouse A-Main 10th Place Finisher: Chad Kemenah
Outback Steakhouse A-Main 15th Place Finisher: Andrew Palker
(Lincoln Electric, Daido Engine Bearings, MSD Performance, Outback Steakhouse: Need decal to qualify for contingency award)

Qualifying
Group (A)
1. 22C-Cole Duncan, 15.376; 2. 49x-Tim Shaffer, 15.496; 3. 24-Rico Abreu, 15.532; 4. 81-Lee Jacobs, 15.539; 5. 17-Caleb Helms, 15.667; 6. 23-DJ Foos, 15.879; 7. 7C-Caleb Armstrong, 15.927; 8. 35s-Stuart Brubaker, 16.053; 9. O7-Jacob Wilson, 16.102; 10. 23P-Darren Pifer, 16.23; 11. 71m-Dave Blaney, 16.275; 12. 8-Dean Jacobs, 16.659

Group (B)
1. 10H-Chad Kemenah, 15.618; 2. 4-Danny Smith, 15.657; 3. 8M-TJ Michael, 15.687; 4. 57-Kyle Larson, 15.764; 5. 16-Danny Mumaw, 15.866; 6. 5K-Adam Kekich, 15.894; 7. 7K-Cale Conley, 15.947; 8. 9M-Jordan Ryan, 16.037; 9. 13-Brandon Matus, 16.34; 10. 22-Brandon Spithaler, 16.487; 11. 9-Ryan Linder, 16.769; 12. 9C-Roger Campbell, 16.918

Group ( C )
1. 57X-Andrew Palker, 15.907; 2. 45-Trevor Baker, 16.001; 3. 59-Ryan Smith, 16.213; 4. 13D-Danny Dietrich, 16.297; 5. D4-Danny Holtgraver, 16.359; 6. 2-Parker Price-Miller, 16.526; 7. 51-John Garvin, 16.823; 8. 98-Carl Bowser, 16.973; 9. 95-Hunter Mackison, 17.114; 10. 4W-Eric Williams, 17.162; 11. 97W-Mitchell Wormall, 17.326; 12. 27Z-Sean Zemunik, 17.652

Group (D)
1. 33M-Max Stambaugh, 16.064; 2. 3G-Carson Macedo, 16.346; 3. 4N-Jim Morris, 16.6; 4. 5T-Travis Philo, 16.68; 5. 33-Brent Matus, 16.684; 6. O8-Dan Kuriger, 16.709; 7. 12-Daniel Harding, 17.221; 8. 46-Michael Bauer, 17.322; 9. 92A-Sammy Walsh, 17.332; 10. 1080-Jordan Mackison, 17.415; 11. 35-Tyler Esh, 17.464; 12. 4B-Steve Butler, 17.614

Heat #1 – Group (A) (8 Laps) – Top 5 Transfer
1. 24-Rico Abreu [2]; 2. 81-Lee Jacobs [1]; 3. 22C-Cole Duncan [4]; 4. 23-DJ Foos [6]; 5. 49X-Tim Shaffer [3]; 6. 71M-Dave Blaney [11]; 7. 8-Dean Jacobs [12]; 8. 7C-Caleb Armstrong [7]; 9. 17-Caleb Helms [5]; 10. O7-Jacob Wilson [9]; 11. 23P-Darren Pifer [10]; 12. 35S-Stuart Brubaker [8]

Heat #2 – Group (B) (8 Laps) – Top 5 Transfer
1. 57-Kyle Larson [1]; 2. 4-Danny Smith [3]; 3. 8M-TJ Michael [2]; 4. 10H-Chad Kemenah [4]; 5. 7K-Cale Conley [7]; 6. 5K-Adam Kekich [6]; 7. 9-Ryan Linder [11]; 8. 13-Brandon Matus [9]; 9. 9M-Jordan Ryan [8]; 10. 9C-Roger Campbell [12]; 11. 22-Brandon Spithaler [10]; 12. 16-Danny Mumaw [5]

Heat #3 – Group (C) (8 Laps) – Top 5 Transfer
1. 59-Ryan Smith [2]; 2. 13D-Danny Dietrich [1]; 3. 45-Trevor Baker [3]; 4. 57X-Andrew Palker [4]; 5. 51-John Garvin [7]; 6. D4-Danny Holtgraver [5]; 7. 2-Parker Price-Miller [6]; 8. 98-Carl Bowser [8]; 9. 97W-Mitchell Wormall [11]; 10. 95-Hunter Mackison [9]; 11. 4W-Eric Williams [10]

Heat #4 – Group (D) (8 Laps) – Top 5 Transfer
1. 3G-Carson Macedo [3]; 2. 33M-Max Stambaugh [4]; 3. 5T-Travis Philo [1]; 4. 4N-Jim Morris [2]; 5. 33-Brent Matus [5]; 6. 92A-Sammy Walsh [9]; 7. O8-Dan Kuriger [6]; 8. 46-Michael Bauer [8]; 9. 12-Daniel Harding [7]; 10. 35-Tyler Esh [11]; 11. 4B-Steve Butler [12]; 12. 1080-Jordan Mackison [10]

Dash #1 (4 Laps)
1. 24-Rico Abreu [2]; 2. 33M-Max Stambaugh [1]; 3. 59-Ryan Smith [4]; 4. 22C-Cole Duncan [3]; 5. 81-Lee Jacobs [5]

Dash #2 (4 Laps)
1. 49X-Tim Shaffer [4]; 2. 4-Danny Smith [1]; 3. 57-Kyle Larson [2]; 4. 13D-Danny Dietrich [3]; 5. 3G-Carson Macedo [5]

C-Main (10 Laps) – Top 2 Transfer
1. 9C-Roger Campbell [1]; 2. 98-Carl Bowser [2]; 3. 97W-Mitchell Wormall [7]; 4. 12-Daniel Harding [5]; 5. 46-Michael Bauer [6]; 6. 35-Tyler Esh [10]; 7. 92A-Sammy Walsh [8]; 8. 1080-Jordan Mackison [9]; 9. 4B-Steve Butler [11]; 10. 4W-Eric Williams [4]; 11. 95-Hunter Mackison [3]; 12. 27Z-Sean Zemunik [12]

B-Main (12 Laps) – Top 4 Transfer
1. 71M-Dave Blaney [9]; 2. 35S-Stuart Brubaker [6]; 3. 17-Caleb Helms [1]; 4. 7C-Caleb Armstrong [4]; 5. 23P-Darren Pifer [8]; 6. D4-Danny Holtgraver [11]; 7. 9M-Jordan Ryan [5]; 8. O7-Jacob Wilson [7]; 9. 8-Dean Jacobs [14]; 10. O8-Dan Kuriger [15]; 11. 98-Carl Bowser [18]; 12. 9C-Roger Campbell [17]; 13. 2-Parker Price-Miller [13]; 14. 9-Ryan Linder [16]; 15. 22-Brandon Spithaler [12]; 16. 13-Brandon Matus [10]; 17. 16-Danny Mumaw [2]

A-Main (30 Laps)
1. 57-Kyle Larson [6]; 2. 3G-Carson Macedo [10]; 3. 24-Rico Abreu [1]; 4. 49X-Tim Shaffer [2]; 5. 13D-Danny Dietrich [8]; 6. 59-Ryan Smith [5]; 7. 22C-Cole Duncan [7]; 8. 81-Lee Jacobs [9]; 9. 4-Danny Smith [4]; 10. 10H-Chad Kemenah [14]; 11. 71M-Dave Blaney [21]; 12. 33M-Max Stambaugh [3]; 13. 8M-TJ Michael [11]; 14. 17-Caleb Helms [23]; 15. 57X-Andrew Palker [16]; 16. 35S-Stuart Brubaker [22]; 17. 23-DJ Foos [15]; 18. 7K-Cale Conley [18]; 19. 7C-Caleb Armstrong [24]; 20. 9C-Roger Campbell [26]; 21. 4N-Jim Morris [17]; 22. 33-Brent Matus [19]; 23. 45-Trevor Baker [12]; 24. 51-John Garvin [20]; 25. 5T-Travis Philo [13]; 26. 9-Ryan Linder [25] Lap Leaders: Rico Abreu [1-3]; Kyle Larson [4-30]

Current Ohio Sprint Speedweek presented by Cometic Gasket Point Standings (After June 20):
1. Chad Kemenah – 502
2. Carson Macedo – 502
3. Tim Shaffer – 500
4. Ryan Smith – 496
5. Rico Abreu – 494
6. Cole Duncan – 484
7. Caleb Helms – 462
8. Parker Price-Miller – 444
9. Cale Conley – 436
10. Andrew Palker – 434

Win Bonus Count presented by Cometic Gasket:
Tim Shaffer – 1 – Eldora Speedway
Kyle Larson – 2 – Wayne County Speedway [+$500]

Current Arctic Cat All Star Circuit of Champions Standings (June 20, 2017):
1. Chad Kemenah – 2714
2. Ryan Smith – 2498
3. Caleb Helms – 2444
4. Caleb Armstrong – 2442
5. Max Stambaugh – 2254
6. T.J. Michael – 2150
7. Brandon Spithaler – 1973
8. Brandon Matus – 1960
9. Tim Shaffer – 1948
10. Tyler Esh – 1921