Stockton, Calif. (April 27, 2002) Ron Strminska Jr. became only the sixth driver to win a Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring event in his first start. Strminska started the 125-lap duel shotgun on the field after transferring from the ...
Stockton, Calif. (April 27, 2002) Ron Strminska Jr. became only the sixth driver to win a Featherlite Southwest Series, NASCAR Touring event in his first start. Strminska started the 125-lap duel shotgun on the field after transferring from the non-qualifiers race in which he was involved in a last lap incident with Adam Andretti. Strminska's car was slightly damage but his crew was able to make repairs in time for the main event at Stockton 99 Speedway, which saw the return of the Featherlite Southwest Series after a six year hiatus.
Strminska dazzled the hometown crowd as he reeled in then leader Burney Lamar and made the pass for the lead on lap 123. Lamar finished in second, with Todd Souza coming home a solid third. Bob Lyon was fourth with series veteran M.K. Kanke rallying for fifth after falling down a lap early. Rounding out the top ten were Doug McCoun, Steve Belletto, John Baker, Sean Woodside, and Greg Potts.
Strminska led only three laps in route to his first series victory worth more than $3,925. The race was slowed seven times for 45 laps of caution and took 45 minutes, 48 seconds to complete at an average speed of 40.938. Jim Pettit II won his first career series Bud Pole Award with a quick lap of 13.337 seconds/67.481 MPH on the high-banked quarter mile paved oval. Steve Belletto of Modesto, Calif. was the Rookie-of-the-Race for the second consecutive event. Belletto also transferred to the big dance after winning the 25-lap non-qualifiers race.
By virtue of his second place finish, Burney Lamar takes over the points lead after Eddy McKean struggled and finished 18th. Lamar leads Sean Woodside, McKean, M.K. Kanke, and Joe Herold. The series travels next to the one-mile oval at Pikes Peak Int'l Raceway for a 100-lap race on Sunday, May 19, 2002 in a companion event with the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.