Casa Grande Hosts USAC Southwest Sprint “Hank Arnold Memorial”

Stevie Sussex. (Lance Jennings / SCRAFAN.COM photo)

From Lance Jennings

(May 14, 2019) – This Saturday, May 18th, the Sands Chevrolet USAC SouthWest Sprint Cars will clash at Central Arizona Speedway for the “Hank Arnold Memorial.” Promoted by Dave Ellis, the popular event is the second of three appearances at the Casa Grande, Arizona oval. The sixth point race will also showcase IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Sport Mods, Pure Stocks, Bombers, and Power 600 Micro Sprints. The Front Gates will open at 5:00pm and Racing is scheduled to start at 7:00pm. In addition, there will be an Open Practice on Friday, from 6:00PM to 9:00PM. For more event and ticket information, visit or call 520.709.0718.

Since 1967, the “Hank Arnold Memorial” has been a part on the Arizona sprint car scene. Widely regarded as one of the most popular drivers, mechanics, and car builders in the state, Arnold lost his life in a terrible crash at Manzanita Speedway on June 16, 1967. One week later, Bob Huebner claimed the first of his two memorial victories. “The Shermanator” Jeremy Sherman leads all drivers with six victories and other winners include Wayne Bennet (4), Charles Davis Jr. (3), Billy Shuman (3), Eric Wilkins (3), Larry Clark (2), Bob Cleberg (2), Dennis Matousek (2), Bob Ream Jr. (2), Stevie Sussex (2), Lealand McSpadden (1), Buddy Taylor (1), Billy Boat (1), Marty Wilcox (1), Jerry Coons Jr. (1), Josh Pelkey (1), and Rick Ziehl (1). Davis has won the last two Arnold Memorials, topping the 2016 race at Canyon Speedway Park and last year’s show at Casa Grande. The event win list is at the end of this release.

Located on the Pinal County Fairgrounds, Central Arizona Speedway has hosted fifteen USAC SouthWest Sprint Car events. Defending champion, “Chargin” Charles Davis Jr. leads all drivers with seven USAC victories at the 3/8-mile oval and Josh Hodges set the new 410 1-lap track record of 16.233 on March 2nd. Indiana’s C.J. Leary topped the March feature and the Casa Grande win list is at the end of this release.

Heading to Saturday’s race, Brody Roa (Garden Grove, CA) holds a 39-point lead over the competition. Driving the BR Performance #91R HD Industries / Burris Racing Maxim, Roa won the April 27th “State 48 Classic” at Canyon Speedway Park. At press time, the 2016 USAC West Coast Sprint Car Champion has two heat race victories, one Saldana Racing Products Hard Charger Award, five top-10 finishes, and 37 feature laps led. With three USAC SouthWest wins, Roa will be looking to add the “Hank Arnold Memorial” to his resume.

R.J. Johnson (Laveen, AZ) ranks second in the chase for the championship. Piloting the Bobby Martin Racing #51 Martin Family Auto Museum / Pro Flyer Race Engines Sherman, Johnson scored fifth in the “State 48 Classic.” To date, the five-time USAC SouthWest Champion has one heat race victory, four top-10 finishes, and 1 feature lap led on the season. R.J. has fifty-five USAC SouthWest wins and will have his sights on his second “Arnold Memorial” victory.

Stevie Sussex (Tempe, AZ) is third in the USAC SouthWest point standings. Racing Robbie and Gaye Allen’s #12 ABC Body Shop / PPG Automotive Finishes Maxim, Sussex led five laps at Canyon Speedway Park before finishing second to Brody Roa. At press time, the 2017 USAC National Sprint Car Rookie of the Year has also posted four top-10 finishes on the season. The second generation driver has twelve SouthWest wins and will be looking for his third “Arnold Memorial” triumph.

After scoring fourth at Canyon Speedway Park, “Chargin” Charles Davis Jr. (Buckeye, AZ) has climbed to fourth in the championship point standings. Driving his #50 RSS Industries / MP Environmental RSS, Davis has three heat race victories, two top-10 finishes, and 6 feature laps led on the year. The defending champion has three “Hank Arnold Memorial” wins and will have his sights on his 31st SouthWest victory.

“The Magic Man” Mike Martin (Yuma, AZ) sits fifth in the USAC SouthWest point chase. Driving his #16 Naquin Precision Earth Moving / American FlowTech Maxim, Martin placed seventh in the April 27th main event. To date, the 2012 Hall of Fame Classic Winner has one heat race victory and three top-10 finishes in the campaign. “The Magic Man” has six career SouthWest victories and will be looking to add the “Hank Arnold Memorial” trophy to his collection.

Currently ranked sixteenth in points, Ryan Cully (Alger, WA) leads the chase for Rookie of the Year honors. Stephen Sanchez (Flagstaff, AZ), Eddie Tafoya Jr. (Chino Hills, CA), and Jeff Dyer (Bermuda Dunes, CA) are also in contention.

Among the other drivers expected to be in action are “The Real American” Matt Rossi, Jake Swanson, Matt Lundy, Michael Curtis, Chris Bonneau, Sterling Cling, Andy Reinbold, “The Bull” Tye Mihocko, and more.

The pit gate will open at 4:00pm and pit passes are $35 for Adults.

Central Arizona Speedway is located on the Pinal County Fairgrounds at 512 N. 11 Mile Corner Road in Casa Grande. To get to the track, take Exit 194 from Interstate 10, then head east seven miles to the fairgrounds. Adult Tickets are $20, Senior/Military tickets are $17, and Kids (11 and under) are FREE. For more event and ticket information, visit or call 520.709.0718.

The Sands Chevrolet USAC SouthWest Sprint Car Series thanks AMSOIL, Beaver Stripes, Brown & Miller Racing Solutions, Butlerbuilt Professional Seat Systems, Competition Suspension Incorporated, Hoosier Racing Tire, Pyrotect Racing Cells, Saldana Racing Products, and Ultra Shield Race Products for their support. If you or your company would like to become part of the series, contact PR Director Lance Jennings at

For more information on the series, visit the United States Auto Club (USAC) website at and the social media for USAC Racing. You can also find exclusive content at and the USAC SouthWest Sprint Car Facebook and Twitter pages.

HANK ARNOLD MEMORIAL WINNERS: 1967-Bob Huebner, 1968-Bob Cleberg, 1969-Jerry McClung, 1970-Bob Cleberg, 1971-Bob Huebner, 1972-Billy Shuman, 1973-Lealand McSpadden, 1974-Buddy Taylor, 1975-Billy Shuman, 1976-Billy Shuman, 1977-Dennis Matousek, 1978-Dennis Matousek, 1979-Larry Clark, 1980-Wayne Bennett, 1981-Larry Clark, 1982-NO RACE, 1983-Wayne Bennet, 1984-Wayne Bennet, 1985-NO RACE, 1986-NO RACE, 1987-NO RACE, 1988-Billy Boat, 1989-Wayne Bennet, 1990-Marty Wilcox, 1991-Dick Kelm, 1992-Bob Ream Jr., 1993-Curt Brown, 1994-Mike Boat, 1995-NO RACE, 1996-Jerry Coons Jr., 1997-Josh Pelkey, 1998-Bob Ream Jr., 1999-Eric Wilkins, 2000-Eric Wilkins, 2001-Eric Wilkins, 2002-Jeremy Sherman, 2003-Charles Davis Jr., 2004-Jeremy Sherman, 2005-Jeremy Sherman, 2006-Jeremy Sherman, 2007-Jeremy Sherman, 2008-Andy Reinbold, 2009-Rick Ziehl, 2010-Jeremy Sherman, 2011-Stevie Sussex, 2012-NO RACE, 2013-NO RACE, 2014-Stevie Sussex, 2015-R.J. Johnson, 2016-Charles Davis Jr., 2017-NO RACE, 2018-Charles Davis Jr.

2019 SANDS CHEVROLET USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR POINT STANDINGS: 1. Brody Roa-358, 2. R.J. Johnson-319, 3. Stevie Sussex-292, 4. Charles Davis Jr.-269, 5. Mike Martin-265, 6. Matt Rossi-258, 7. Jake Swanson-255, 8. Matt Lundy-209, 9. Josh Hodges-202, 10. Isaac Chapple-200, 11. Michael Curtis-195, 12. Austin Williams-188, 13. Damion Gardner-139, 14. Chris Bonneau-136, 15. Jason McDougal-124, 16. Ryan Cully-122, 17. Landon Cling-121, 18. Dennis Gile-119, –. Hunter Schuerenberg-119, 20. Stephen Sanchez-105.