Manke Doesn't Need Big Bucks To Win At Cajon EL CAJON, CA. John Manke is your typical low buck racer. He has an old, heavy, under-powered late model sportsman. The one and only time he had won a main event during his seven-year career at Cajon...
Manke Doesn't Need Big Bucks To Win At Cajon
EL CAJON, CA. John Manke is your typical low buck racer. He has an old, heavy, under-powered late model sportsman. The one and only time he had won a main event during his seven-year career at Cajon Speedway prior to Saturday night, he was the victim of a post-race disqualification based on a technicality. That was one long year ago. Saturday night, the low dollar racer finally made it back to victory lane again. This time the result was not overturned.
Manke paced all 40-laps of the NASCAR Weekly Racing Series late model sportsman main event on the 3/8-mile paved oval. He outran veteran Ron Overman by a single car length. Third went to Todd McLauchlan while point leader Mike Mendenhall celebrated his 38th victory by coming home fourth. Danny Gay was fifth.
Jim Smith prevailed in the 25-lapper for legends. Attrition and accidents in both the heat races and the main event thinned the 26-car field to just 15 by halfway through the feature. Scott Brown edged out his uncle Ron Brown in the 25-lap contest for Grand American modifieds. Arne Knufman was another wire-to-wire victor in the 20-lap bomber feature.
The 37-year-old Manke started on the outside front row of the sportsman feature and outgunned polesitter Dee Cable when the green was unfurled. Overman, who started sixth, moved up to the second position by the sixth circuit. But gaining that position he was unable to pose any really strong challenges for the lead despite staying close the rest of the way. His best shot came eight laps from the finish following a yellow flag. He tried the low groove going into turn one, but Manke shut the door on the two time champ.
The pace was slowed four times, all for minor incidents. The opening 26 rounds ran non-stop. Then fast qualifier Brandon Whitt looped it in turn two after a sticking brake caused his brakes to burn out. Whitt had run as high as third after staring eighth. In short order after the Whitt spin, there were four more caution flags - on laps 30, 32, and 34. Two other times cars spun, but one was off the track and the other recovered before a yellow resulted.