CRA: "Jeff Bagley Classic" preview

The tight battle for supremacy in USAC's Valvoline CRA Sprint Car Series resumes this Saturday night when the series returns to the Perris (Calif.) Auto Speedway. A 30-lap "Jeff Bagley Classic" feature is on tap and three drivers will...

The tight battle for supremacy in USAC's Valvoline CRA Sprint Car Series resumes this Saturday night when the series returns to the Perris (Calif.) Auto Speedway. A 30-lap "Jeff Bagley Classic" feature is on tap and three drivers will be the focus of attention in the race presented by Temecula Valley Pipe & Supply and Vista Paint.

Californians Rip Williams of Yorba Linda, Mike Kirby of Torrance and Damion Gardner of Concord are locked in a struggle for the series point lead which has produced 10 of this year's 12 Perris race winners. Kirby and Gardner have each won four times at the 1/2-mile dirt oval, while Williams has won twice. The only other drivers to win at Perris in 2004 have been Adam Mitchell and Jason York.

Williams, seeking his initial series driving title, leads Kirby, the 1993 series champion, by 71 points. Gardner is just eight behind Kirby. Five of the eight remaining races are slated at Perris, including the Ninth Annual Budweiser Oval Nationals Oct. 28-29-30 and the season finale November 20.

Williams and Kirby each have 10 "top-five" finishes in 12 Perris starts. Gardner only has eight, but the three drivers accounted for 1-2-3 finishes April 10, May 1 and May 29. Nine of Williams' Perris starts have ended with "top-three" finishes.

VALVOLINE USAC/CRA SPRINT CAR SERIES STANDINGS
1.-Rip Williams-1,306
2.-Mike Kirby-1,235
3.-Damion Gardner-1,227
4.-Troy Rutherford-933
5.-Greg Bragg-744
6.-Tony Jones-726
7.-Steve Ostling-706
8.-Bobby Cody-692
9.-Mike Spencer-664
10.-Brian Venard-633

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Series USAC
Drivers Tony Jones , Rip Williams , Damion Gardner , Mike Spencer , Greg Bragg , Troy Rutherford , Jason York
Teams Williams