ocean speedway Taco Bravo 360 sprint car series

From Steven Blakesley

WATSONVILLE, CALIFORNIA (February 27, 2012) – Thanks to sponsorship support from Digital Delivery Networks, Inc. (DDNi), of Scotts Valley, the 52nd Johnny Key Classic at Ocean Speedway on Saturday August 25 will now pay $10,000 to the victor. The 52nd Key will be one of the richest 360 Sprint Car events on the West Coast and has a past winners list that reads as a who’s who of California Sprint Car racing history.

“We’ve been working with John Prentice and Ocean Speedway for several years,” said DDNi Chairman Chris Luck. “I have been coming to the Johnny Key Classic since I was a teenager and have many fond memories from all the races. I am thrilled that we found a way to participate in this classic event, since we know a good number of the teams that will be racing.”

The $10,000 prize is sure to lure many of the nation’s top Sprint Car talents to John Prentice’s quarter-mile dirt oval, with last year’s edition ushering in the winged debut of USAC and Indycar star Bryan Clauson most notably.

“We are extremely grateful to Chris Luck and Rene North for stepping up to support sprint car racing,” Prentice said. “This will truly take the Johnny Key to the next level and I have no doubt this announcement will be an attention grabber on a national level!”

With the larger purse will also come more prestige for the overall Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo series. As in years past, the winners of the four qualifying races throughout the summer will be locked into the Key feature and those four races are expected to be barn-burners in 2012.

“Racing starts at the local level, and Ocean Speedway is a local track for us,” said Rene North, co-founder and CFO at DDNi. “DDNi is proud to sponsor this event, and help support grassroots racing programs. We’ve been involved for several years at the top level with Elite Racing and now with CL Motorsports and the Black Bandit, so it’s fun to be able to do something in our own backyard.”

Former Johnny Key winners Brent Kaeding, Bud Kaeding, Craig Smith, 2011 winner Ronnie Day, Eric Rossi, Jason Statler, Tommy Tarlton, and Tim Kaeding are all likely to return for the 2012 edition of the great race.

This will mark the second event now at Ocean Speedway that pays $10,000 to win, with September’s Pat Pettit Memorial for IMCA Modifieds also slated to pay $10k to the winner. That event will be a multi-day affair expected to attract anyone who’s anyone on the West Coast in Modified stock cars.

The Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo kick off their 2012 season on Friday March 30th with a 16 race slate on tap for the championship.

For more information on the Ocean Sprint Cars presented by Taco Bravo log onto http://www.oceansprints.com and for more on the Ocean Speedway visit http://www.oceanspeedway.com

Johnny Key Classic winners

1954 Danny Graves
1955 Al Pombo
1956 Clyde Palmer
1957 Ray Raineri
1958 Rick Henderson
1959 George Benson
1960 Marshall Sargent
1961 Clyde Palmer(2)
1962 Clyde Palmer(3)
1963 Marshall Sargent
1964 George Snider
1965 Burt Foland
1966 Burt Foland(2)
1967 Bill Scott
1968 Howard Kaeding
1969 Bill Scott(2)
1970 Don Epperson
1971 Everett Edlund
1972 Nick Rescino
1973 Howard Kaeding(2)
1974 Nick Rescino(2)
1975 Nick Rescino(3)
1976 Tony Ringo
1977 Danny O’Neill
1978 Johnny Brazil
1979 Howard Kaeding(3)
1980 Brent Kaeding
1981 Mike Sargent
1982 Nick Rescino(4)
1983 John Viel
1984 Nick Rescino(5)
1985 Rich Voss
1986 Nick Rescino(6)
1987 Howard Kaeding(4)
1988 Rod Spencer
1989 Scott Luhdorff
1990 Danny Olmstead
1991 Terry McCarl
1992 Scott Luhdorff(2)
1993 Chuck Miller
1994 Chuck Miller(2)
1995 Rick Martin
1996 Bud Kaeding
1997 Craig Smith
1998 Ronnie Day
1999 Eric Rossi
2007 Jason Statler*
2008 Brent Kaeding (2)*
2009 Tommy Tarlton*

2010 Tim Kaeding*

2011 Ronnie Day* (2)

* = Held at Ocean Speedway