by Lance Jennings
SANTA MARIA, CA – APRIL 2, 2012… This Saturday, April 7th, the USAC West Coast 360 Sprint Car Series will make their first of five appearances at Scott Woodhouse’s Kings Speedway in Hanford. Joining the “Eddie Stewart Classic” card will be the winged Rebel Sprint Cars, IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Sport Mods, and IMCA Stock Cars. The Front Gates will open at 5:00pm with Qualifying scheduled at 6:00pm.
After winning at Las Vegas and Bakersfield, Campbell’s Bud Kaeding is the hottest driver on the circuit. Piloting Junior Bowman’s #29 Buster & Ziggy Enterprises / Kaeding Performance Bullet, the 3-time USAC Silver Crown Champion is tied for the points lead with Matt Mitchell. With a Hanford victory on Saturday, Kaeding can top Peter Murphy as the leader in career series feature wins and also tie a record of three consecutive victories with Ryan Bernal (2011) and T.J. Smith (2010).
Driving Steve Watt’s #18X Christian Stover Foundation / SWE Maxim, Matt Mitchell of Yorba Linda finds himself tied for the points lead. The former USAC Western Midget Series Rookie of the Year claimed second in his first series start at Bakersfield on March 24th. Mitchell will have his sights set on adding Hanford’s main event to his resume.
Another driver off to a hot start is Ryan Bernal of Hollister. Sitting third in points, the pilot of Keith Ford’s #73X King Racing Products / A&A Precision Machine Spike finished second at Las Vegas after starting eleventh and ran third at Bakersfield after starting sixteenth. Last year’s Rookie of the Year won two of his five main events at the Hanford clay oval and will be a favorite to watch on Saturday.
Santa Barbara’s Markus Niemela is fourth in the point standings. Driving Steve Watt’s #81 Lost Reality / SWE Maxim, the Finland native won his heat race and placed fourth in the Bakersfield feature. Niemela won his first Sprint Car feature at Ventura on October 15th and will be looking to claim Saturday’s victory at Hanford.
Josh Ford of Camarillo is currently fifth in the championship chase. Piloting Keith Ford’s #73X King Racing Products / A&A Precision Machine Ellis, the former USAC National Sprint Car Rookie of the Year placed eighth at Las Vegas and fifth at Bakersfield. Ford will have his sights set on Hanford’s 30-lap main event victory.
Among the other top contenders expected to be in action are “Hollywood” Danny Faria Jr. of Tipton, Don and Chris Gansen of Verdemont Heights, Quartz Hill’s Steve Conrad, Justyne Hamblin of Hanford, San Diego’s Chris Ennis, Bakersfield’s Ricky Kirkbride, Brody Roa of Buena Park, Rusty Carlile of Bakersfield, Ventura’s Greg Taylor, and many more.
Kings Speedway is located on the Kings County Fairgrounds at 801 South 10th Avenue in Hanford, California. Reserved Grandstand tickets are $15 with discounts available for Seniors (55+), Military (with I.D.), and Children 7-12. Kids 6 and under are FREE at all non-special events. Advance tickets are on sale now and camping is available on the fairgrounds. For more event information, visit kingsspeedway.net or call (559) 584-RACE (7223).
The USAC West Coast 360 Sprint Car Series would like to thank Southwest Contractors, Hoosier Tire, Amsoil, ButlerBuilt, Competition Suspension Inc., Cory Kruseman’s Sprint Car & Midget Driving School, Crow Enterprizes, DJ Safety, Diversified Machine Inc., Extreme Mufflers, Hilborn Fuel Injection, Hinchman-Indy Racing Uniforms, Integra Shocks, Kaeding Performance, Keizer Wheels, LRB Inc. Race Products, ParkerStore of Phoenix, Ringers Gloves, Rod End Supply, SBI Fuel Systems, Saferacer.com, Saldana Racing Products, and Sander Engineering for their support. If you or your company would like to become part of the series, please email PR Director Lance Jennings at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the USAC West Coast 360 Sprint Car Series, visit westcoastsprintcars.com, usacracing.com, racesantamariaspeedway.com, or follow the series on facebook.
USAC WEST COAST 360 SPRINT POINTS:
1. Bud Kaeding 68; 2. Matt Mitchell 68; 3. Ryan Bernal 59; 4. Markus Niemela 59; 5. Josh Ford 55; 6. Peter Murphy 52; 7. Danny Faria Jr. 50; 8. Kevin Barnes 49; 9. Don Gansen 41; 10. Steve Conrad 34; 11. Chris Gansen 33; 12. Justyne Hamblin 33; 13. Chris Ennis 31; 14. Ricky Kirkbride 31; 15. Tracy Hines 26; 16. Jim Richardson 24; 17. Matt Day 23; 18. Brody Roa 21; 19. Terry Nichols 21; 20. Austin DeBlauw 19.
2012 USAC WEST COAST 360 SPRINT CAR SERIES SCHEDULE
DATE – TRACK – LOCATION
April 7: Kings Speedway – Hanford, CA
April 14: Tulare Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA (Chris & Brian Faria Memorial)
April 21: Santa Maria Speedway – Santa Maria, CA (Ron Otto Memorial)
May 5: Santa Maria Speedway – Santa Maria, CA
May 12: Tulare Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA
June 9: Kings Speedway – Hanford, CA
June 23: Santa Maria Speedway – Santa Maria, CA (Bud Stanfield Memorial)
July 7: *Santa Maria Speedway – Santa Maria, CA (War At The Shore / Doug Fort Memorial)
July 14: Tulare Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA (John Anthony Sharp Memorial)
August 4: Kings Speedway – Hanford, CA (Jim Evett Memorial)
September 8: Kings Speedway – Hanford, CA (Jim Turner Memorial)
September 22: *Canyon Speedway Park – Peoria, AZ (Brawl For It All / Non-Points)
September 29: Santa Maria Speedway – Santa Maria, CA (Billet Cup / John Jewett Memorial / Non-Points)
October 13: Kings Speedway – Hanford, CA (Cotton Classic)
* = Co-Sanctioned Event With ASCS Canyon Region Sprints.
This schedule is subject to change.