Friday, July 1, 2016

Timmy Post Memorial Preview, Antioch, Hardtop And Orland News

First of all...

Just A Kid From The Grandstands:  My Time In Auto Racing

Available on Lulu in Paperback And Hard Cover

On Sale At Reduced Price

Don's California Racing Recollections:  Best Of The Blog And Beyond

Available via print on demand at Lulu in Hard Cover or Paperback


If You Like Reading Our Articles, Visit The Tip Jar at Go Fund Me to support our efforts

DCRR Racing Media And PR Consulting  HERE

The DCRR Racing Radio Show
DCRR Racing Radio Show: Episode 86 by GenWhat

Fireworks, IMCA Modifieds And Sport Modifieds highlight Timmy Post Memorial Race At Merced Speedway

Hobby Stocks To Run 34 Laps For Timmy

Back in 1999, there was a young man who grew up at Merced Speedway. He did various jobs at the track, including towing cars off the track with the blue tractor that has become known as Timmy's Tractor. The people at Merced Speedway loved him. He reached another milestone. At 17 years old, he graduated from high school. He had a future that was very bright.  Then, tragedy struck as he was killed in an automobile accident on graduation night.

His name was Timmy Post. His mother and grandparents started a race soon after called The Timmy Post Memorial Race. His mother made it a 99 lap race in remembrance of the year in which he was taken away from us. At different times, the Modified and Street Stock divisions ran the race, but every division on the card raced for a little bit more when it was Timmy's night
When Chuck and Marylee Griffin walked away from Merced Speedway at the end of the 2009 season, the race was discontinued. However, new promoter Ed Parker has been working to bring back the great traditions of Merced Speedway, and that includes this race. With the blessing of Timmy's family, the race has been brought back, and it will happen this Saturday night. There are a few other things that will make this an even more special event.

For starters, there will be a Fireworks Display that night. Traditionally, fireworks night on Fourth Of July weekend has packed the people into the Merced Speedway grandstands. This would traditionally be one of the big money making nights for the track. One of the traditions that past promoter Chuck Griffin began was a free admission on Fourth Of July weekend. This happened thanks to some good sponsorship. In the spirit of that way of thinking, Parker has made this a free admission night as well. This was made possible thanks to generous sponsorship.

We know the race will be this Saturday night. We know there will be fireworks and we know the admission is free for the fans. The other thing we know is that we will have 3 divisions on the card, including IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Sport Modifieds and Hobby Stocks. Lap distances have just been announced at 25 each for the Modified classes and 34 for the Hobby Stocks.  The number 34 was chosen specifically by Timmy's mother because he would have been 34 years old. We do know that there are many drivers chomping at the bit to get back on the fast quarter-mile clay oval after the one week break from auto racing.

In the IMCA Modified division, Bill Egleston got off to a very good start with some strong finishes and he even had a win early on. Meanwhile, many time champion Ramie Stone sort of struggled for the first few races before he hit his stride. Stone made a big statement that his cousin Paul isn't the only front runner in the family when he won the All Star Series race that came to Merced Speedway. Don't look now, but R. Stone is only a few points behind Egleston in a close championship battle.

When you talk about drivers who could win this week, Bill and Ramie are two you have to consider. However, there are some hard chargers in this division that you need to watch, and not the least of which is past Chowchilla Speedway champion Randy Brown, who won for the second time this season the last time this division was on the card. Brown is making this a three car battle to win the championship.

There are plenty of talented racers in the field, including multi time Hobby Stock champion Bruce "Bubba" Nelson, who has several Top 5 finishes this year.  Bubba has also collected two Hobby Stock Main Event wins this year, but he seems due for a win in this division.  Multi time champion Paul Stone and Jeff Streeter are winners this year who could strike again. Two other drivers to watch for this week are a pair of Ryan's, Ryan Porter and Ryan Larimer. Porter picked up three Main Event wins last year and is a past Hobby Stock champion at the track. Larimer is a Sport Mod champion and is a rookie in this division.

The talent pool in Modifieds at Merced Speedway is pretty deep. There are second generation stars like 2015 runnerup Ricky Thatcher and Jarod Fast. You also have to consider Late Model veterans Chris Shannon and Derek Nance. The fact is, it should be a good show as many of the local racers have always made an effort in the past to support the Timmy Post Memorial Race.
A monkey wrench was thrown into the IMCA Sport Modified point race as 2014 champion Rick Diaz lost his ride a couple weeks ago. This left him scrambling for another car while he ordered a new one, but he made the last show and grabbed a Top 10 finish. Diaz is in the midst of a close battle with Paul's brother Steve Stone and Mike Drake for the championship. Diaz and Stone are both feature winners this year, and Drake has a second and third place finish. This championship battle looks like it could go down to the wire, and there is still plenty of racing left on the schedule.

It seems likely that these drivers will be joined in battle this week by reigning IMCA State champion Fred Ryland. Ryland it fast everywhere he goes and has won races at several tracks already this year. When you factor in drivers in the battle for wins at Merced Speedway, you have to consider veteran Gary Tucker and Chris Falkenberg. Both drivers were Main Event winners at the speedway last year. Falkenberg has a win at Watsonville this year.

A win on this particular night will be special to anybody who gets it, and other drivers will be hoping to make this their night to shine. Others to watch include Top 5 racer Tim Elias, Alex Odishoo, Dwayne Short, Mark Odgers, Tanner Thomas, Paul Espino and reigning champion Josh Hensley, who is due for a win.

When it comes to Hobby Stock Main Event win contenders at Merced Speedway, the Shearer Racing Team is present and accounted for. Whether it is point leader Michael Shearer, third ranked Kristie Shearer or two time winner Bubba Nelson, you never know when the team will strike for another win. Kristie was a three time winner last year, and she is hot on the trail of her first victory of the season.

Much like last season, however, there are several drivers who are threats to add their names to the winners list, and that list has five names on it after seven races. Those names include multi time champion Raul Rodriguez, Bubba Nelson, Ben Lewis II, Phil Vaughn and Terry Campion. Rodriguez is a two time winner this year. Still looking for his first win is reigning champion Kevin Joaquin. Could this be his night to shine?

Last season, Kodie Dean had a Main Event win, but he also had some very brutal luck. It seemed like the #7 car spent more time in the shop being repaired than running at the front of the pack. This season, Dean is in the midst of a Top 5 points season at the speedway. He could strike for a feature win this week. There is also the other #7 car of Gary Hildebrand to consider.

Another driver to keep an eye on will be second ranked Dexter Long. Long has finished as high as second in the Main Event, which is a career best for the second year racer. Other drivers to watch for this week include Austin Van Hoff, Cody Parker, Ben Lewis, Darren Miguel, John Hensley, Top 5 ranked Robby Loquaci and the always exciting George Silva.

As if IMCA Modified, IMCA Sport Modified and Hobby Stock racing isn't enough to get the attention of the Merced Speedway fans, the Timmy Post Memorial race will include a free admission and also a fireworks show. It's sure to be a great night! For further information, check out

Hardtops Roll Into Placerville For Next Race On Satutrday

Placerville, CA...The California Hardtop Association is back at Placerville Speedway Saturday night for more racing action.  So far, the season has brought lots of excitement and interesting results as new winners have emerged.  On the list so far are the father-son duo of Ken Clifford and Jason Clifford, Dave Mackey and Jason Armstrong.  Mackey drove the Dudley Racing Family #1 Tribute Car to his second Antioch win last time out when mechanical gremlins struck heat race winner Rob Waldrop.

At the Roseville pavement race a week earlier, it was Jason Armstrong impressing with a clean sweep.  The Armstrong family has been an important factor in the group getting races at Placerville and other tracks in the area.  Jason and his father Dennis Armstrong have raced Stock Cars for years at Placerville Speedway, and Jason recently drove his Hobby Stock to a win at Orland on the same weekend of his Roseville Hardtop win.  Both Armstrong's have been Hardtop winners in the past and come in as favorites this week.

The field will have a different look to it as a few drivers are sidelined.  Ken Clifford will be out to try for his third win, but son Jason is out making repairs to the car he's driven to a pair of wins this year.  Club president John Philbert is also out as his car is being prepared with some safety fixes.  Rob Waldrop is also sidelined this week.  Last time we saw Joe Hopp in Chico, he was scoring his best finish yet with the group in second.  Hopp will be in Placerville along with Russ Kraft.

The steady John Turner will be competing in one of the first cars seen in the California Hardtop movement over a decade ago.  Dave Mackey has confirmed that he will be in Plcerville for this race.  We haven't heard if Rick Ruiz will be there, but word was at least a half dozen of these beautiful Hardtops will be on the quarter-mile clay oval in Placerville on Saturday.  They will take to the quarter-mile banked paved oval of Ukiah Speedway on July 16th and the dirt of Chico on July 29th to end the month.

Roughly 50 Winners Honored After Ten Events 
at Antioch Speedway 

Antioch, CA...Antioch Speedway heads into their usual July 4th break on an optimistic note. The competition has been close in the All Star Series sanctioned divisions with nearly 50 drivers having earned Main Event winner's plaques on John Soares's fast 3/8 mile clay oval. You really don't know who is going to win on any given week.

The A Modified division has yet to see a repeat winner after 6 events. The drivers will be competing for a big paycheck after the one week break. When they return on July 9th, it will be the $2,500 to win Jerry Hetrick Memorial Race. Some of the best drivers in the state will be coming to town for a piece of the action.

So far, some of the winners include reigning champion Scott Busby, Oreste Gonella, Josh Combs, Bobby Hogge IV, Jeff Decker and Aaron Crowell. There has been no repeat winner in the division, and point leader Carl Berendsen II is chomping at the bit to record his first career victory. Consistency has made him the point leader and the 2014 champion, but he has a new car with victory in mind.

For the A Modified division alone, the price of next week's ticket will be worth admission. When you start talking about drivers like Hogge, recent Wild West Modified Speedweek champion Kellen Chadwick and two time Petaluma champion Nick DeCarlo coming into town, you know the competition level will be high. Plus, it's an opportunity for the racers to honor one of Antioch's local stars from the 1970's, Jerry Hetrick.

While Jeff Decker and Richard Papenhausen battle it out for the Late Model point lead, they are not the only two Main Event winners after four events. The record will show that Hogge and West Coast Late Model champion Clay Daly have also visited the Winner's Circle. On July 9th, there will be an opportunity for another driver to write their name onto the list, but they may have to get by Papenhausen to do it. Considering it will be a big A Modified show, it's just possible that four time  Modified champion Troy Foulger and Hogge will be coming to town to try for double division wins.  Foulger was close last time with seconds in Modifieds and Late Models that night.

The closest thing to domination has been seen in the Hobby Stock division, but you still never know who's going to win on any given week. Rookie Guy Ahlwardt scored his third victory last time out, and there have been five different feature winners, including Stock Car veteran Danny Jones, who is currently second in the standings, two time champion Melissa Myers, three time reigning champion Kimo Oreta and Chris Long. There are still some drivers looking to not only get a win this year but make it their first career victory, and high on that list are Michael Cooper, Natalie Perry and Cameron Swank.

In the Winged 360 Sprint Car division, there has been no repeat winners in six races. The battle continues to be between Billy Aton and Art McCarthy  Both have feature wins. Aton gained the point lead after the last race when McCarthy failed to start the Main Event. The 360 Winged division seems to be an opportunity for new drivers to come in and get their first career wins, and last week saw Caleb Montgomery add his name to that list. Koen Shaw, Sprint Car veteran Bobby McMahon and Shawn Conde have also won races in this competitive class.

The Wingless Spec Sprint division continues to be led by past champion and division all time win leader Jim Perry Jr., the only repeat winner so far. He is joined in victory this year by Jason McIntosh, Dan Gonderman, Jeremy Newberry and Marcus Smith. One driver looking for his first career win has two season high second place finishes, including last race. That would be Rick Panfili, who had his name on the roster when this division first started back in 1999 and has supported it every year since. It is likely that you will see some more new winners before the season is over, and could Panfili be one of them?

The Limited Late Model division has been Larry Damitz's playground. Larry has won four of the last five championships in this class and is second only to Mike Gustafson on the division's all time win list. Both drivers have won Main Event's this year. Jim Freethy, the only driver to beat Damitz for the championship during his streak, and Mark Garner are the other winners. Garner is the only two time winner of the bunch. He currently sits a very close second behind Damitz in the standings. Rookie Kimo Oreta is also in the championship hunt and seems to be the next driver in line for a victory, but  Lori Brown is long overdue to get her next win. Who will it be next week when the division returns?

The B Modified division has seen the steady Al Johnson lead the way, but he has no wins this year. With three second place finishes, Johnson is looking for his first career win. With three wins, the flying Clymnens is closing in fast on Johnson for the point lead. He joins other multi time winners, Fred Ryland and Anthony Giuliani on the list. Not long ago, K.C. Keller got his first career win, and A Modified racer Aaron Crowell jumped into the Paul Mulder car and won last time. Johnson is due for a win, but there's also the rapidly improving Shane DeVolder and double division racer Danny Jones who could step forward and join the winner's list.

You shouldn't forget about the All Star Series Dwarf Cars, because the competition is tough in that division. Kevin Miraglio has used consistency to grab the point lead, but in the most recent race, he scored his first victory to maintain the lead. Kevin joined several drivers with feature wins so far, and rival second place driver Mike Corsaro is also on the list. Reigning champion David Teves, who is competing for the championship at Watsonville this year, two time winner Mark Biscardi of South Bay and Thomas Leiby are other drivers on the winner's list. While some of the drivers have stepped aside this year or are racing elsewhere, this year is an opportunity for some new winners, and Tim Reeder could be the next winner on the list.  Other drivers to watch include Josh Miller, Brian Gray , two time Street Stock champion David Rosa and past Hobby Stock champion Robert Coe.

The drivers get a one week break, and several of them might be enjoying time with the family or might be off racing someplace else. On July 9th, racing will continue at Antioch Speedway with the $2,500 to win Jerry Hetrick Memorial race for A Modifieds. DIRTcar Late Models, Limited Late Models, Wingless Spec Sprints, B Modifieds and Hobby Stocks will also be on the card. For further information, go to

Langenderfer, Chilton New Orland Raceway Winners
Racing Again This Saturday Night

Orland, CA...This Saturday night, racing returns to Orland Raceway for the fourth event of the season.  Five divisions of racing took their turns on the newly resurfaced one-fifth mile clay oval last Saturday night.  It was a night for new winners to shine as Donovan Chilton (Mini Stocks) and Jeremy Langenderfer (Pure Stocks) won their respective Main Events for the first time this season.  Olin Crane won his second Mini Truck feature while Skyler Richter won the combined 600/250 Micro Sprint race as the top 600.  Andrew Love was the top 250 finisher.

Donovan Chilton had three Top 3 finishes in four visits last season, including one win.  He was making his first Mini Stock start as the field nearly doubled last week.  Past champion Tom Davis has been on a roll with back to back feature wins, and both Chilton and Davis were heat race winners.  Davis figured to be a good bet for Win #3, but Chilton would prevail in the 20 lap feature, forcing Davis to settle for second.  Jeff Bennett earned his third Top 3 finish in third after a second place finish to Davis in his heat race.  Dustin Hills was fourth in his Hornet ahead of past champion John Kirkpatrick, Steven Spears, Jack Pendergrass, Josh Tucker and Robert Hunt.

Top 5 Chico competitor Jeremy Langenderfer has had two disappointing outings, but they say three is a charm.  On Saturday night, he and Chris Bennett teamed up to keep past champion Steve Martin out of the Pure Stock winner's circle all night.  Bennett got it started with a heat race win, and it was Langenderfer getting the feature victory.  Martin made him work for it as he finished second ahead of Bennett, Earl Adams and Mel Byers.  There are three different winners in three races.

Olin Crane opened the season with a win in the Mini Truck feature, but he suffered a DNF in the next race.  "Rollin" Olin rebounded in a big way as he won the heat race and the Main Event.  Merced Speedway competitor Tony Peffer brought his truck to the only California track with its own Mini Truck division and chased Crane across the line for a second place heat race finish.  Division veteran Dan Webster was hoping for two in a row in the Main Event, and he made Crane work for the win as Webster settled for second in the 20 lap race.  Peffer grabbed the final podium spot in third as Brent Allinger, William Fogle and reigning champion Keith Ross rounded out the finish.  Ross has yet to get a Top 3 finish this year.

As the runnerup driver in 600 Micro Sprint points last year, Skyler Richter had five second place finishes, but no wins.  On Saturday night, Richter finally found the winner's circle as he won the combined 600/250 Main Event ahead of fellow division competitor Tony Alosi and Dean Slinkard, who finished fifth overall.  Alosi won the heat race.  Andrew Love won the 250 heat race and was the top driver in his group in the feature.  Dave Mckinnon Jr. was the second 250 as Rusty Hensley and reigning champion Jess Garland rounded out the finish.

The same five divisions will be a part of this Saturday night's show.  General admission is $7.00, Children 7-12 and Seniors are $5.00 and children 6 and under are free.  First race starts at 7:00 p.m. sharp.  For further information, go to