By Robert Haugh
Piloting the #12 RAM Racing Spike/RRE Chevy EcoTec, Chico’s Dillon Silverman continued his stellar 2010 season by winning his third American Sprint Car Series (ASCS) Pacific region Midget race at the legendary ¼-mile Silver Dollar Speedway in Chico, CA on Friday, July 23.
Inching at squeezing under Travis Haugh for several laps, finally making a yeoman’s pass under the rim-riding Haugh on Lap 11, Silverman was showcasing veteran-like prowess. From then on, Haugh tried re-passing Silverman, but Silverman’s poise gave him the edge at the checkers, edging Haugh by a narrow three-tenths of a second – the closest and most exciting ASCS Midget finish of the year!
Following 18-year-old Silverman to the checkers were Haugh in his grandfather Rich’s #5h Maxim/Chevy, Angwin’s Britton Bock in his #67 TCR/Ford, San Jose’s Ryan Shupe in the #40 Bay Muffler Stealth/Ford, Shingle Springs’ Rick Young aboard his #14 RAM Racing “Pink Lady” Spike/RRE Chevy EcoTec with Cameron Park’s Lonny Alton rounding out the finishing order in Lana Alton’s #5a Stealth/Ford. Shupe moved into fourth by passing Young on Lap 14.
Making just his fourth Midget start, June 23 race winner Haugh, of Butte Valley, was seeking his second win after surging from his fifth starting spot to the lead on the opening lap. However, after leading through Lap 10, Silverman made an exciting low-groove pass under the rim-riding Haugh for the lead. 18-year-old Haugh is the eldest of 1987 Silver Dollar Speedway 410 Sprint Car track Champion Rick Haugh’s two sons. Despite the strong run, Haugh’s mount was battling engine gremlins.
Haugh claimed the Heat race from the outside pole in dominating fashion over Young, Shupe, Silverman, Bock and Alton. Alton flipped on Lap 4 of the Heat – returning to action in the feature. Bock also spun in the Heat, also returning for the feature.
Haugh recorded the fastest lap time of the evening during the Heat, clocking a lap at 14.782 seconds on the heavy, well-prepared quarter-mile oval.
Silverman is the only multiple-time ASCS-Pacific region Midget feature winner in 2010, with three victories to his credit. Young, Haugh and Bock have also found the winner’s circle this year. In addition to leading both the ASCS-Pacific region and ASCS Silver Dollar Speedway points, Silverman also sits second in the Bay Cities Racing Association (BCRA) overall Midget points.
The ASCS Midgets are Silver Dollar Speedway’s newest division, calling Silver Dollar Speedway their home track this year. The race was the eighth of nine scheduled visits the ASCS Midgets will make at the Silver Dollar quarter-mile in 2010, returning for their final appearance on Friday, August 20. Two early-season races were rained out.
The ASCS Midgets are designed to one day become to Midget racing what the 360 has become to Sprint Car racing. While it may not be the fastest class of midget racing, the division provides 90 percent of the performance at nearly 50 percent of the cost to the competitor with most teams utilizing the new Chevrolet EcoTec racing engine developed by Southern California’s Revolution Racing Engines (RRE).
“The cost control nature of this class coupled with the regular races at the famed Silver Dollar Speedway will provide a foundation to build the ASCS Midget Division in Northern California,” says ASCS Pacific division Midget Director Young. “There are many outlaw kart and micro drivers in the area that now have an affordable alternative to Sprint Car racing and the best track in California to race at on a Friday night,” adds Young.
For more information on the budget-minded ASCS Midget-Pacific division, contact ASCS Midgets-Pacific region Director Rick Young at (916) 717-3122. For more information on the RRE Chevy EcoTec Midget engine, visit www.revolutionracingengines.com or call (805) 238-3930. For more information on Silver Dollar Speedway, visit the track’s official Web site at www.silverdollarspeedway.com
Summary: Feature (start) 1. Silverman (2), 2. Haugh (5), 3. Bock (6), 4. Shupe (3), 5. Young (4), 6. Alton (1) Lap leaders: 1-10 Haugh, 11-15 Silverman
Heat: 1. Haugh, 2. Young, 3. Shupe, 4. Silverman, 5. Bock, 6. Alton