Willow Springs WSMC race notes

Jeremy Toye continues trek towards Toyota 200 with another win at Willow Springs. Rosamond, CA. February 16, 2003 -- 2002 WSMC champion Jeremy Toye continued his winning streak Sunday, as the San Diego based Suzuki/Dunlop rider sponsored by...

Jeremy Toye continues trek towards Toyota 200 with another win at Willow Springs.

Rosamond, CA. February 16, 2003 -- 2002 WSMC champion Jeremy Toye continued his winning streak Sunday, as the San Diego based Suzuki/Dunlop rider sponsored by Lee's Cycles took first place in the 12 lap Toyota Cup Unlimited Formula 1 competition at Willow Springs.

Toye's crew worked late into the night to fix a cylinder head and get the bike back in shape. The effort paid off, with Toye holding a clear lead start to finish.

Desert winds proved to be Toye's greatest challenge, "They were a bit odd," noted Jeremy. "I was battling them throughout the race."

Some well known riders, failed to make the start, including Toye's arch rival Vincent Haskovec and top contender Chris Ulrich, both late scratches from a starting grid of 31 racers.

Early on young Jason Perez of Brentwood riding a 600 cc Concept-5 Suzuki, set the pace for the group of riders battling it out for second. Following close behind were Corey Eaton of Placerville and Jack Pfeifer of Las Vegas.

By the second of twelve laps, Perez had fallen back a bit, but Eaton and Pfeifer were joined by Will Eikenberry. Starting from the 29th position on the grid, Eikenberry, who heralds from Littlerock managed to weave his way through 25 competitors to edge into forth place in just five miles of racing.

North Hollywood based Steve Hewitt ate asphalt coming out of turn two in the second lap, slowing the pack a bit. Hewitt was uninjured, but was unable to finish the race.

By lap three, Toye had a commanding one-eighth mile lead over his nearest competitors, but the excitement continued in the slugfest for second.

Stoney Landers and Jeff Stern entered the fray making it a five-bike brawl for podium positions. As the group crossed the start/finish after seven and a half miles of racing, Toye had expanded his lead to a quarter mile with Eaton, Eikenberry, Landers, Pfeifer, and Stern racing neck and neck for the second and third slots.

Midway through the twelve lap main event, Burbank based Landers began to break away and set his sights on silver. Meanwhile Jack Pfeifer, racing a 600 cc Suzuki against most others 1000cc bikes managed to hold onto third by a hair.

Despite his displacement disadvantage, Pfeifer refused to yield and continued to gain ground on Landers as they worked their way through the twisty turns of the famed high-speed circuit of Willow Springs. By lap ten, fellow Vegas rider, Jeff Stern, racing for EBC/Motul was closing in on Pfeifer making the kind of cagey maneuvers for which the veteran is known.

With the white flag in sight, the order stood Toye, Landers, Pfeifer and Stern. Yet none besides Toye seemed assured of their placement. In turn six, Pfeifer was closing on Landers, by turn nine all three riders were nose to tail. Then in a final burst, Stern stole a third place finish from Pfeifer, edging ahead in the last ten feet of the race.

As the trio took to the winner's circle, Stern chided Pfeifer "who's the fastest from Vegas, now!" ribbing the fourth place finisher who had recent write-ups touting him as Sin City's fastest rider. Considering the 400 cc edge Stern had with equipment, Pfeifer certainly didn 't need to hang his head over the day's valiant effort.

Stoney Landers clearly enjoyed his hard won second. "It was a lot of fun -- I love having those guys up ahead of me, gives me a good carrot to chase after." Landers, who races for Andy Milton/SSED, like the other top finishers, rode a Suzuki equipped with Dunlop tires.

The Toyota Cup Unlimited Series is a yearlong calendar of events sanctioned by the Willow Springs Motorcycle Club. 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.

Today the raceway sports six separate tracks including the world famous "Fastest Road in the West," the "Streets of Willow Springs" a kart track and three ovals - one dirt and two paved. With this unparalleled flexibility and its reputation for high-speed excitement, Willow Springs is in constant demand for sanctioned events, club races, automotive testing, location filming and every type of road and sprint racing school.

Round Three of the Toyota Cup will be held the weekend of March 14-16, with the main event scheduled for Sunday, March 16th. Race schedules and ticket information can be obtained from the track office at (661) 256-2471.

<pre> Toyota Cup Unlimited Formula 1 Race Results (Top 10 Finishers) February 16, 2003

Place   Name            #       Hometown        Sponsor                 Bike
1       Jeremy Toye     1       San Diego       Lee's Cycle             Suzuki
2       Stoney Landers  220     Burbank         Ca. Superbike School    Suzuki
3       Jeff Stern      33      Las Vegas       EBC/Motul               Suzuki
4       Jack Pfeifer    4       Las Vegas       Dr Canale               Suzuki
5       Corey Eaton     94      Placerville     Roseville Cycle         Suzuki
6       Will Eikenberry 363     Littlerock      Ca. Superbike School    Kawasaki
7       Tyler Paulson   5       Silverado       Skorpion Racing         Suzuki
8       Jason Perez     53      Brentwood       Concept-5               Suzuki
9       Marte Cooksey   17      San Diego       Shadow Racing           Suzuki
10      John Pearson    39      Chula Vista     Maxima Oils             Suzuki


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About this article
Series Other bike
Drivers Vincent Haskovec , Jeremy Toye , Corey Eaton , Jason Perez , Jack Pfeifer , Chris Ulrich