California drivers sweep opening night of Senator's Cup Fall Classic
California drivers were a perfect 3-for-3 on opening night of the Senator's Cup Fall Classic at The Bullring on Friday night.
Austin Edwards of San Bernardino, Calif., took advantage of a re-start with eight laps remaining in the 70-lap Jr. Late Models feature, passing race leader Austin Herzog down the stretch before taking the checkered flag .852 of a second ahead of Herzog. Edwards was pleasantly surprised by his trip to the Winner's Circle after the race, which featured drivers age 12-16.
"The last time I was here at this track was two years ago, and I was in a Bandolero, so I cannot believe I'm here in the Winner's Circle my first time in a Late Model," the 12-year-old Edwards said. "I'm not sure what I did differently, but apparently we had the speed at the end to come out in first. It feels so good to be back in the Winner's Circle, it's unbelievable."
Zach St. Onge of Upland, Calif., continued his dominance at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway short track, winning his sixth consecutive start at the 3/8-mile paved oval. St. Onge finished .678 of a second clear of Ronnie Davis in the 50-lap South West Tour Trucks/Pro Trucks race to add another victory to his resume.
"This is definitely one of my favorite tracks," St. Onge said. "This is a momentum track, and it's good to be really smooth here. Coming up racing Bandos here, that's what you learn, and it just suits me.
"I love this track, and I can't wait for tomorrow."
Hillsborough, Calif., driver Toni Breidinger won her fourth Bullring race in the last two years after crossing the line first in the 30-lap USAC HPD Midgets feature. Her twin sister, Annie, finished third, and Breidinger - who edged Bullring regular Jesse Love by .508 of a second - was all smiles after the short track triumph.
"This is such a fun track, and it's the biggest track that this series races on and is really fast," Breidinger said. "The track was definitely slick after this last re-start, and it almost felt like a dirt track because my car was sliding everywhere. I had overall speed and was trying to be consistent."
In addition to the feature races, a number of classes held qualifying and heat races, including the Super Late Models and Super Stocks. Jeremy Doss, a two-time winner at The Bullring on Sept. 23, broke the track record for the Super Late Models class, but former Bullring winner Derek Thorn bested him just minutes later with a lap of 14.489 seconds at 93.17 miles per hour.
It was the second week in a row for a track record to fall at the LVMS short track. Jordan Black set a new mark of 16.543 seconds at 81.61 miles per hour in the Legends division a week ago.
NEXT RACE: The Senator's Cup Fall Classic continues with six races on Saturday, with appearances by U.S. Senator Dean Heller, the USAC HPD Midgets Series and Southwest Tour Truck Series highlighting the action. The Super Late Models 150 will pay $15,000 to the winner, and Linny White will be in search of his third consecutive win in the prestigious event.
Senator's Cup Fall Classic
Opening Night results
South West Tour Trucks/Pro Trucks 50-lap feature
1. Zach St. Onge; 2. Ronnie Davis (-.678 of a second); 3. Gary Howard (-1 lap); 4. Mike Kelperis (-1 lap); 5. Eric Darensburg (-2 laps); 6. Barry Kelperis Jr. (-2 laps); 7. Steve Reeves (-3 laps); 8. Derek Robertson (-3 laps); 9. Hiroyuki Ueno (-10 laps); 10. Linny White (-48 laps).
Jr. Late Models 70-lap feature
1. Austin Edwards; 2. Austin Herzog (-.852 of a second); 3. Dezel West (-2.299); 4. Adam Lemke (-2.545); 5. Tanner Reif (-3.454); 6. Kyle Keller (-3.458); 7. R.J. Smotherman (-4.056); 8. Lilly Mead (-6.693); 9. Jesse Love (-6 laps).
USAC HPD Midgets 30-lap feature
1. Toni Breidinger; 2. Jesse Love (-.508 of a second); 3. Annie Breidinger (-2.972); 4. Cody Jessop (-3.120); 5. Joey Iest (-4.516); 6. Blake Brannon (-5.780); 7. Johnny Nichols (-7.302); 8. Ethan DeGuevara (-9.682); 9. Adam Lemke (-9 laps); 10. Tyler Slay (-10 laps).