TRIPLE DOUBLES! Tim Kennedy'S Racing Report: Irwindale June 11, 2005 Irwindale, CA., Jun. 11 - It was Dodge Night Saturday at Irwindale Speedway for the popular NASCAR Dodge Weekly Racing Series. Track management made history when they staged...
Tim Kennedy'S Racing Report: Irwindale June 11, 2005
Irwindale, CA., Jun. 11 - It was Dodge Night Saturday at Irwindale Speedway for the popular NASCAR Dodge Weekly Racing Series. Track management made history when they staged the first triple double-header evening in the track's seven years of racing. Twin-50 lap features for Lucas Oil Super Late Models and Dodge Super Trucks, plus twin-25-lap mains for the mini stocks were joined by a 35-lap race for the economical Justice Brothers Pure Stocks. Admission tickets for twins and triplets were half and a third off respectively in a unique promotion for the special night.
When the final checkered flag waved at 10:24 p.m the results looked like the twin main event-winning drivers were photo-copied. Defying the odds, three drivers won both features in their series. Series rookie Andrew Phipps, 28, won both SLM 50-lap races. Ron Peterson, appropriately driving a Dodge Dakota, won both truck races-a 50-lap run and a second race which officials reduced to 25 laps before the race because of the late hour. Kevin Bernhardt drove his Ford Pinto to both 25-lap mini stock victories.
Jimmy Rouse, the initial Pure Stock IS track champion last season, defeated his wife Michelle in their 1974 Chevrolets and won his second IS main in five events this year. The race had three leaders and the winner from San Bernardino led twice (laps 4-12 and 30-35). Wife Michelle led laps 13-29 after trading rides with her husband for the second week because she believed his 09 car was better. Jimmy agreed to drive Michelle's 90 car and said it was a winner. In a tight, four-car battle, contact from the second place car got leader Michelle out of shape in turn two and she dropped to fourth. Fast qualifier/last main winner/point leader John Mattie came from the back row (17th) and finished a pressing second to the winner, 0.240 seconds back. Mark Whitson and Michelle completed the top four. Eleven drivers finished with eight on the lead lap.
The featured Lucas Oil SLM field had series sponsor Forrest Lucas in attendance and a strong 32-car field, including four backup cars in reserve for four of the leading point-runners. Phipps, aboard the No. 21 Bruncati Sunrise Ford 2004 Taurus raced successfully by Tony Bruncati last season, was fastest qualifier for both mains. He started third in both races. He now has won four of the nine races, including three in a row, during his rookie SLM campaign.
"This is my best night ever. This is just so much fun," Phipps said. The two-time (2003-04) IS Grand American Modified champion is now second in track points, only 14 behind Todd Southwell.
Running the low-side, Phipps chased outside-running, pole starter Kevin Thompson for 23 laps in the opener. Phipps executed an inside pass from the fourth turn to the starting line on lap 24 and then pulled away from the Bakersfield driver. Southwell, who started sixth, passed Thompson on lap 25 and battled Phipps closely to the checkers. He fell short of victory by 0.284 seconds. Third starter Russell White took third, three-quarters of a straight (4.359 seconds) behind Phipps. The announced 31-car field started 28 cars and 21 finished, with 19 on the lead lap. Five cautions for multi-car mishaps slowed action. The final caution eliminated fifth and sixth place cars of Danny Gay and Mark Perry in turn three on lap 31.
The second SLM 50-lap main followed the first race by 65-minutes and allowed teams to make necessary repairs/adjustments. The same starters occupied the first three berths on the grid. Only 25 starters answered the call for the second main. Phipps led all the way from third slot. Front row starter Thompson and fourth starter Southwell made contact on the initial lap and Thompson spun on the backstretch. Officials sent Southwell to the back of the field with Thompson for the restart. Southwell charged back to finish eighth. Robby Sawyer spun and hit the backstretch wall head-on and reported chest pain.
Paramedics checked him in the ambulance track-side and released him. On lap 23 fourth and fifth place Mark Perry (outside) and Mike Price (inside) made contact exiting the fourth turn, precipitating a six-car crash that sidelined four cars. Perry and Price restarted from the back. Perry finished ninth and Price 12th with 17 cars racing at the end and 15 drivers on the lead serial.
Super Truck winner Peterson, who is sponsored by Frahm Dodge in Norco (Riverside County), started second as fastest qualifier and led all the way in both truck mains. He scored his second and third IS victories this season and moved into a tie for the series point lead with Cory Fancy after seven of 16 races. Top three qualifiers Pat Mintey, Jr and Fancy swapped second and third finishing positions in both races, with Mintey runner-up in race one and Fancy in race two. Eric Hardin started and finished fourth in both mains. Twenty of 27 starters finished the first race, with 15 logging 50-laps. All 25 starters finished the second main and 22 drivers completed all 25 circuits.
Mini stock double winner Bernhardt, the fourth quickest qualifier, had the pole position for both 21-car mains. Fastest qualifier Eric Reed spun a four on the inversion wheel following 3:30 p.m time trials. He led the final 20 laps in the all-green flag 7:25.607-timed first race and all 25 laps in the one-caution flag second event. Steve Rogers and Bob Reed were runners-up in events one and two. Hard charger honorees selected by race control for positions gained were: Peter Bryk in Pure Stocks, rookie Daryl Scoggins in both mini stock races, rookie Scott Fortier in both Super Truck mains, plus Rod Johnson and Scott Conaway in the two SLM features.
JUSTICE BROS. PURE STOCKS: (17 cars)
Fast Time: John Mattie, 18.037.
Main: Jimmy Rouse, Mattie, Mark Whitson, Michelle Rouse, Peter Bryk, Branden Mulvihill, Bob Bartleson, Paul Vitale, Jeff Elder, Harry Michaelian, Charlie Saied, Bill Bartleson, Vince Allevato, Kenny Rice, Dave Foster, Ron Davis, Nick Nuccitelli.
MINI STOCKS: (23 cars)
Fast Time: Eric Reed, 17.260.
1st Main: Kevin Bernhardt, Steve Rogers, E. Reed, Bob Reed, Tom Dye, Dustin Morgan, Virgil Young, Daryl Scoggins, Kris Melleby, Dennis Croasmun, Jim McNear, Rod Schmitt, Glenn Duffin, Kory Russell, Brenda Pugh, Ron Schmitt, Tyler Rogers, Greg Tucker, Fred Adams, Tim Ross-DNS-Ed Lavender, Lauri Wong.
2nd Main: Bernhardt, B. Reed, S. Rogers, E. Reed, Ross, Dye,Tucker, Melleby, McNear, Morgan, Young, Rod Schmitt, Croasmun, Scoggins, Duffin, Russell, T. Rogers, Adams, Pugh, Ron Schmitt.
DODGE SUPER TRUCKS: (27 trucks)
Fast Time: Ron Peterson, 19.541.
1st Main: Peterson, Pat Mintey, Jr, Cory Fancy, Eric Hardin, Dana Higgins, Jim Kondziela, Logan Henson, Scott Fortier, Matt Saied, Dave Scarcella, Randy Colling, Bob Barker, Rick Legere, Ryan Fortier, Ken Maler, Richard Williams, Darren Sigwing, Dante Cerchio, Steve Latina, Tim Doyle, Derek DiSarro, Paul Brennan, P. J. Baker, Joe Anderson, Josh Barker, Danny Mathus, Louis Mammolito.
2nd Main: Peterson, Fancy, Mintey, Hardin, Kondziela, Higgins, Brennan, S. Fortier, Saied, Henson, Maler, DiSarro, Scarcella, Colling, Legere, B. Barker, Mathus, R. Fortier, Williams, Sigwing, J. Barker, Cerchio, Latina, Doyle, Anderson.
LUCAS OIL SUPER LATE MODELS: (32 cars)
1st Main Fast Time: Andrew Phipps, 17.869.
2nd Main Fast Time: Phipps, 17.832.
1st Main: Phipps, Todd Southwell, Russell White, Mike Price, Rod Johnson, Dan Moore, Nathan Wulff, Kevin O'Connell, Kevin Thompson, Scott Conaway, Ed Hoffman, Steve Hamilton, Jason Patison, Chris Clyne, Tony Jackson, Andy Coyle, Brandon Loverock, Kris terris, Robby Sawyer, David Ross, Brian Pannone, Danny Gay, Mark Perry, Keith Spangler, Van Knill, Dan O'Donnell, Jim McGill, Kenny Shearer. DNS-Brian Ickler.
2nd Main: Phipps, White, Moore, Johnson, Conaway, O'Connell, McGill, Southwell, Perry, O'Donnell, Hamilton, Price, Terris, Pannone, Loverock, Jackson, Ross, Hoffman, Wulff, Clyne, Coyle, Patison, Knill, Thompson, Sawyer.