Justin Sanders Wins Feature at Placerville

Placerville Logo
By Gary Thomas
Placerville, CA – July 14, 2018…When it comes to Winged Sprint Car triumphs throughout Northern California in 2018 Aromas racer Justin Sanders and Auburn’s Andy Forsberg rank right near the top of that list. On Saturday evening at Placerville Speedway the talented duo battled it out towards the end of an exciting 25-lap feature, with Sanders coming out on top to claim his 10th overall victory of the season.
Great racing was seen in all four divisions on Saturday during Mountain Democrat Kids Bike Night. Also tallying entertaining wins and standing atop the podium at the 11th Red Hawk Casino point race were Ryan McDaniel with the Ltd. Late Models, Dan Jinkerson with the Pure Stocks and Ben Wiesz, who earned his first career triumph with the Nor-Cal Dwarf Car Association. Thanks to several companies and individuals a total of 30 kids bikes were raffled off at the event along with other items. RMI would like to thank everyone for their gracious support.
Mather’s Kalib Henry grabbed the initial lead in the Thompson’s Auto Group Winged 360 Sprint Car main event. Justin Sanders had positioned himself in the runner up spot and on lap four blasted to the outside of Henry off the second corner to grab the lead. At that same time the caution flag waved, saving the top spot for Henry. On the restart Sanders again went upstairs and rode the thick Placerville cushion around Henry once again to take over the point off turn two. Henry then got big time sideways and dropped multiple spots shortly after.
A terrific battle then developed between eighth starting Andy Forsberg, Cameron Park’s Shane Hopkins and Hollister’s Tony Gualda. Track prep had taken place prior to the feature and cars were able to run on virtually every square inch of the bullring. On lap 12 Gualda hopped the cushion in turn three and stopped to bring out a yellow, forcing him to the rear of the field. When going back green Hopkins made an impressive move to drive around Forsberg for second but would trip on the cushion in turn four and allow Forsberg to maintain the spot. After this the five-time track champion closed in Sanders and began to hound the rear of the Dale Miller Septic No. 4sa machine.
From lap 17 to 22 Sanders and Forsberg kept fans on the edge of their seats racing through heavy lapped traffic. The duo looked to be setting up for an epic final few laps until the caution lights came on for a spun car in turn two. Once going back green Sanders pulled away, but just prior to getting the checkered, a stalled car in turn four brought out one final yellow. At that same time top-five running Andy Gregg had issues and came to a stop after having an impressive run in the feature.
The green white checkered restart saw Forsberg keep pace with Sanders and give it one final stab down low through the final corners, but Sanders got the drive he needed and crossed the stripe with about a car length to spare. The former Ocean Speedway track champion becomes the first repeat winner of the season in weekly competition at the Placerville Speedway. It also marked his third overall victory of the year on the red clay. Placerville’s own Jimmy Trulli came home in third, with Reno’s Adam Walters in fourth and 14th starter Colby Wiesz of Colfax in fifth.
Gualda rebounded from the early issues to finish sixth, with the remainder of the top-10 comprised of Zane Blanchard, Cody Hodgson, Hopkins and Chris Masters. Hopkins had a career best run going until suffering a flat tire. The three heat races held during the night were captured by Jodie Robinson, Andy Forsberg and Shane Hopkins. The ADCO Driveline and Custom Exhaust Fast Time Award to start the evening was set by Kalib Henry at 10.733. A total of 20 Thompson’s Auto Group Winged 360 Sprint Cars were on hand during the night.

Placerville Speedway
Placerville, CA
Saturday July 14, 2018

Winged 360 Sprint Cars

1. 4SAJR – Justin Sanders
2. X1 – Andy Forsberg
3. 33T – Jimmy Trulli
4. 34 – Adam Walters
5. 8 – Colby Weisz
6. 7C – Tony Gualda
7. 7Z – Zane Blanchard
8. 55 – Cody Hodgson
9. 97 – Shane Hopkins
10. 98 – Chris Masters
11. 38 – Blake Carrick
12. 85 – CJ Humphries
13. 77 – Mike Benson
14. 15S – Ryan Souza
15. 16 – Andy Gregg
16. 5 – Cole Danell
17. 09 – Jared Van Bebber
18. 5C – Mike Cook
19. 93 – Kalib Henry
20. 1R – Jodie Robinson