Toye remains unchallenged at Willow Springs. Rosamond, CA April 20th, 2003 - A sense of dÃ©jÃ vu permeated the crowd of spectators that flocked to Willow Springs Raceway this weekend to enjoy the 4th installment of the Toyota Cup Unlimited ...
Toye remains unchallenged at Willow Springs.
Rosamond, CA April 20th, 2003 - A sense of déjà vu permeated the crowd of spectators that flocked to Willow Springs Raceway this weekend to enjoy the 4th installment of the Toyota Cup Unlimited Formula One series. Once again San Diego's Jeremy Toye enjoyed an unchallenged start-to-finish lead, making this his fourth consecutive first place finish this season.
Despite the lack of competition for the leader's slot, there was plenty of excitement as a group of exceptionally strong racers battled for points and money positions further back in the pack.
Lake Elsinore's Vincent Haskovec started the day at the very back of the grid on a Suzuki 750, yet by the end of the 2nd lap had managed to weave his way into second place a position he refused to give up for the remainder of the race.
Las Vegas rider Jeff Stern and Burbank's Stoney Landers battled back and forth for the third slot with the podium position switching again and again for much of the race. In the end it was Landers who managed to pull away to capture third and add extra points to his strong standings this season at Willow Springs.
An equally ferocious battle between youth and experience was playing out just behind as young Corey Eaton of Placerville and veteran Clinton Whitehouse of Bakersfield fought over fifth place points. As each lap passed, it seemed one or the other had taken advantage of a new situation to take over the hotly contested fifth slot. In the final analysis, it was traffic, not cunning that did Whitehouse in as the two made their way for the checkered flag. Eaton has finished in the top five in three out his four races this season.
Rounding out the top ten money finishers were Marte Cooksey of San Diego, Stephen Hewitt of North Hollywood, Dan Lebson of Hermosa Beach and Reno Karlmian of Glendale.
After the race, Stoney Landers commented on the fun and excitement of racing at Willow Springs. "Even though I only got third place, this was one of my favorite rides. It was a great end to tough weekend ... I love racing against guys who pass me ... you get to work out how to pass back. ... [Stern] is a great rider."
It was the second second-place finish this year for Czech-born Vincent Haskovec who races for SGI. With less horsepower, but greater maneuverability on the turns, Haskovec was able to snake through traffic that others found frustrating. "I launched pretty good," noted Vincent. "But it got a little dicey with Stoney and Stern out there. I'm really happy where I finished. I had a great time."
Toye who races for Lee's Cycles, took his fourth consecutive first place finish in stride, claiming he's been trying new things to get the most out of his equipment. He was racing a new motor this week and felt that he got off to a good start. "I was comfortable after the first few laps. I got a nice steady rhythm going and was able to keep up my concentration."
The Toyota Cup Unlimited Series is a yearlong calendar of events sanctioned by the Willow Springs Motorcycle Cub. These high-charged, unlimited Formula 1 races lead up to the grueling Toyota 200 race to be held October 19th. Here top riders will compete for a $150,000 purse with the winner taking home $50,000, one of the richest rewards in motorcycle racing.
This world-class event is timed to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the famed Willow Springs International Raceway. Founded in the fall of 1953, the track has been under the ownership of Bill Huth for over 40 years and has hosted many legendary racers.
Round Five of the Toyota Cup will be held May 16-18th including a special 50-mile Solo Race on Saturday May 17th. Call (661) 256-2471 for complete details.
Admission including pit passes and camping privileges is only $10/person.