By Bob Burbach
Marysville- Paul and Kathy Hawes will host 2 historic racing programs Saturday night at Marysville Raceway Park. For the first time in over a decade the Golden State King of California Sprint Car Series will head into MRP. Point leader Brent Kaeding and Kyle Larson (last season’s Rookie of the Year) are slugging it out for the 2010 title. Kaeding is looking for his 14th King of California series championship. As a special treat 3 of MRP’s finest will challenge the traveling racers. 4-time champion Korey Lovell is expected to drop a 410 into the Yuba City Scrap and Steel Special. 2004 MRP champ Mike Monahan aboard his Superior Hydraulics hot rod will do the same. 3-time MRP champ Colby Wiesz told this observer that he’d be bringing his family 360 sprinter to the show. Wiesz has won the most feature events of any sprint car driver here at MRP. He has 44. If anyone can knock off the visiting 410 pros with a 360, it surely is Wiesz.
Marysville Raceway Park’s own “Blonde Bombshell”, Misty Castleberry again has an opportunity at making racing history Saturday. Castleberry, pilot of the gleaming #95 could break a 14 year old record for consecutive feature event wins if she grabs #10 on Saturday.
Promoter Paul Hawes, has posted a weekly bounty of $100 on Castleberry that will roll over and increase by $100 every week for the balance of the season if necessary. In order to claim the bounty a driver must win the MRP Mighty Mini Stock feature, but Castleberry must finish. A driver cannot take out Castleberry to claim the prize. You must make a clean pass. The extraordinary local sports interest and publicity for next Saturday’s run for the record is making this a must see event. MRP pays, by far, the highest Mini Stock purses in the west. MRP pays a weekly purse of $400 to win, $300 for 2nd, $200, for 3rd and $100 for 4th and so on. If someone beats Castleberry Saturday they will take home $600 with the added bounty.
It’s interesting to note that Castleberry’s run for the record will happen in the class that traditionally produces the largest car counts annually at MRP. Top stars in the class like Jimmy Ford, Jason Clayton, Howard Law, Mike Merritt, Joel Giusti and Alan Furuta have their sights on #95. Some other top guns in other classes are finding Mini Stock rides trying knock off Castleberry and collect the bounty. MRP Super Stock point leader Jeff Olschowka is one of them.
Co-record holder, Jerry Bartlett had his days smashing the record in 1996 during the inaugural year of “Pure Stock” racing at MRP. Bartlett told this observer that he would be honored to be Castleberry’s “Trophy Boy” if she eclipses his mark. This gesture of good sportsmanship from (Mr. Controversy) Bartlett is notable, “Records are made to be broken.” he commented. The drama here in the area is so thick you can cut it with a knife as local interest in this event is extraordinary. It will all be settled Saturday.
The pit gate opens at 3PM. The spectator gates will open at 5 PM with Hot Laps at 6 PM. IMPORTANT: Qualifying will start after hot laps at about 6:30 with racing following qualifying.