By Gary Thomas
Placerville, CA – May 4, 2019…It was a history making night at Placerville Speedway on Saturday as six-time track champion Andy Forsberg of Auburn became the first driver to reach 60 career Winged 360 Sprint Car wins at the quarter-mile.
Also claiming victories on Big Trophy Night were Ryan McDaniel with the Ltd. Late Models, Dan Jinkerson with the Jay’s Mobile Welding & Fabricating Pure Stocks and Dakota Albright with the BCRA Midget Lites.
The 25-lap Thompson’s Family of Dealerships Winged 360 Sprint Car feature came to the line with Hollister’s Tony Gualda and Roseville’s Jodie Robinson sharing the front row. Gualda earlier in the night had set his fourth ADCO Driveline & Custom Exhaust Fast Time in four events this season and blasted into the lead at the waving of the green flag. Track prep had gone on prior to the feature and made for some fantastic racing on the Placerville bullring.
Gualda paced the field out front while drivers raced hard for position behind him. On lap eight Mather’s Kalib Henry climbed up to the second position before a red flag for Jacob Tuttle, who emerged from the car okay. Up to that point Henry, Placerville’s Jimmy Trulli, J. Robinson, Elk Grove’s Bobby McMahan and Andy Forsberg were putting on a show racing high and low on the speedway. When going back green Forsberg showed his muscle by making several daring moves to power his way up to second by lap 15.
A restart with just five circuits left then set up the winning move. Gualda had continued to have his way out front but Forsberg was able to carve his way by to snag the lead that he would never relinquish. The veteran driver went on to cross the checkered flag to earn career win number 60 at the Placerville Speedway. Gualda came across the line just 0.590 seconds behind Forsberg to earn a runner up finish and take over the point lead.
Henry came home in third to secure his second podium in as many starts for the McColloch family at the track, while McMahan and Trulli also had fine runs to finish fourth and fifth respectively. Completing the top-10 were Calistoga’s Mike Benson, Robinson, hard charger award winner Billy Butler of Sacramento, Escalon’s Cody Hodgson and Cameron Park’s Shane Hopkins. All drivers should be commended for putting on an exciting display of dirt track racing in the feature.
A trio of heat races were held during the night for the Thompson’s Family of Dealerships Winged 360 Sprint Cars and were snagged by Jodie Robinson, Andy Forsberg and Kalib Henry. As noted, Tony Gualda continued to be a qualifying machine to start the evening with his lap of 10.757 topping the 21-car field.
The Ltd. Late Models competed in their third point race of the season on Saturday night and saw the third different winner in as many races with Ryan McDaniel coming out on top. McDaniel jumped into the lead at the waving of the green flag and never looked back en route to his 33rd career Ltd. Late Model triumph at Placerville Speedway. The top-five was rounded out by Jay Norton, Ray Trimble, Dan Brown Jr. and Tyler Lightfoot. The night’s lone heat race was claimed by Trimble.
The Jay’s Mobile Welding & Fabricating Pure Stocks took part in their fourth event of the 2019 campaign and it saw Dan Jinkerson race to his first victory of the season. The 20-lap feature was a battle of the Jinkerson brothers on the front row with Dan on the pole and last weeks winner Kevin to the outside. Dan climbed out front and quickly built up a sizeable advantage over the field.
Cars raced for position behind him but on this night, nobody had anything for the fast-moving No. 29 machine as he took the Ron Stahl checkered flag for the victory over Kevin Jinkerson, Nick Baldwin, Ryan Peter and Ronnie Richards. The remainder of the top-10 was filled out by John Ewing, Lonnie Leonard, Mel Byers, Jesse Bryant and Stephanie Hanson. A pair of heat races were contested for the Jay’s Mobile Welding & Fabricating Pure Stocks and were won by Dan and Kevin Jinkerson.
The BCRA Midget Lites also invaded Placerville Speedway for the third time this season and it was all about Dakota Albright in the feature. The pilot of the No. 35jr machine absolutely dominated the 20-lap finale to pick up the victory. Hunter Kinney, Scott Kinney, Terry Bergstrom and Danika Jo Parker completed the top-five. The two heat races held during the night were captured by Jim Riddell and Dakota Albright.
Full results from Big Trophy Night can be viewed at https://speedhive.mylaps.com/Events/1654081?fbclid=IwAR3pG66LCBrgTCOwfXF2Zw2QIMr9xPrtXvFltgV_b4TazpauSfRhS4ZVJHg
The Placerville Speedway will be right back in action next Saturday night May 11th for the annual Carnett Clash. It will also be the final event for the month of May, as a two-week break occurs after that. Divisions on hand this coming weekend will include the Thompson’s Family of Dealerships Winged 360 Sprint Cars, Ltd. Late Models, Jay’s Mobile Welding & Fabricating Pure Stocks, Mini Trucks and Vintage Hard Tops.