Jacks brothers set track records, win features on Bullring's 2019 opening night
To say Saturday was a good night to be a member of the Jacks family at The Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway would be an understatement.
NASCAR Bombers driver Kyle Jacks got to within one win of his brother, Sam, on The Bullring's all-time wins list with victory No. 16 by taking the 25-lap Bombers feature ahead of 2018 Bombers track champion Vinny Raucci Jr. Kyle Jacks survived a late re-start to hold off Raucci Jr. by .895 of a second to take the checkered flag as the LVMS short track began its 35th season of racing.
If that wasn't enough, Kyle set a new track record in qualifying with a lap of 18.911 seconds, besting the previous record held by none other than his brother, Sam.
"It means a lot, and it's kind of cool that I beat my brother's track record," Kyle Jacks said. "I couldn't do it without my dad, or Court (Connell), Tony or Sam or anyone in the pits. They're the reason I'm here, and I wouldn't trade them for anything else in this world.
"I definitely have the greatest car I've had in my career. It's on rails, and hopefully it can stay on rails the entire season and we can come away with a championship this year."
Kyle closing the gap to one win only lasted for a couple races, however, as Sam ran away with the NASCAR Super Stocks 25-lap feature less than an hour later. Sam - who also set a track record for his division in qualifying with a 16.619-second lap - pushed his career win total to 18 and gave the Jacks family its second victory of the evening.
The amazing thing about Sam Jacks' win was that it came using a backup engine, on loan from Mason Sargent's family. Sargent finished second to five-time and reigning track champion Doug Hamm in the NASCAR 602 Modifieds race later in the night.
"Tonight's been really good for us, but the weekend started out kind of rough," said Sam Jacks, the reigning NASCAR Super Stocks track champion. "We blew a motor last night, so huge thanks to the Sargent family. We were trying to figure out what was wrong, and they were the first ones to come over and say, 'Yep, we've got a motor. Be here tomorrow, and we'll help you put it in.'
"So, thanks to them, it's been a pretty good weekend."
Las Vegas' Chris Clyne won the NASCAR Super Late Models 50-lap feature to end the night's festivities, driving his way to Victory Lane for the third time in the last five races. It was Clyne's 14th career Bullring win, and he has his sights set on challenging for the 2019 track title.
"I'd like to tip my hat and thank all the fans for staying out here to watch the racing, because I know it's cold," said Clyne, a board member for the Las Vegas Chapter of Speedway Children's Charities. "Thanks to my team for their countless hours. I appreciate everybody who's never given up on me and who's helped me along.
"I hope everybody comes back out on the 30th, because that's actually my birthday and hopefully I can be back (in Victory Lane) again."
Hamm navigated his way through lapped traffic late in the race and held off Sargent by .449 of a second for career win No. 52 at the LVMS short track.
"Those (lapped traffic) guys were battling for position there, and you've got to show them a lot of respect, too, because I don't own the whole race track," said Hamm, who ranks fifth on The Bullring's all-time wins list. "I've got to thank Chris Bray from Phil's Phabrication, because this thing was junk all day and he fixed it and made it a rocket."
The Southwest Tour Truck Series was in town on Saturday for another Bullring fix, and John Newhouse of Twin Falls, Idaho, crossed the line first in the division's 35-lap feature to earn his first trip to the track's Victory Lane. Newhouse passed four-time track champion Jeremiah Wagner on Lap 23 and pulled away for a 1.270-second victory.
"We came 500 miles from Idaho and the snow, and it was nice to be able to come race here," Newhouse said. "We ran side-by-side, and I don't even think we touched each other once, so I've got to thank (Wagner) for that. He did a nice crossover on me, and I started losing some brake pedal on the outside. I've got to thank my crew, and these trucks are badass and a lot of fun."
Jason Irwin added to his Bullring win total by earning his 44th career checkered at the 3/8-mile paved oval in the USLCI Legends 25-lap race. Irwin held off 2018 Legends track champion Jaron Giannini by .453 of a second to solidify his hold on sixth place on the track's all-time wins list.
"It's always great racing out here," Irwin said. "I think we're going to miss a couple races because we're going to be touring around a little bit, but anytime we get the chance, we'll definitely be at The Bullring. I'm running a part-time schedule in the SPEARS Modified Tour and will just fill in with Legends when we can."
Eleven-year-old Sabastian Lafia bested Ashton Leonard by 2.718 seconds to earn his first career Bullring win in the USLCI Bandolero Bandits division, while the Bandolero Outlaws 12-lap feature went to Chloe Lynch by .267 of a second over Brendan Tracy. In addition, Dennis Dowell picked up his first Bullring win while driving a Vegas Golden Knights-themed car on a night when the city's hockey team defeated Vancouver 6-2.
"It's a dream come true to win a race at The Bullring," Dowell said.
NEXT RACE: LVMS will pay tribute to area first responders with its annual Hometown Heroes Night, where local first responders and their families will be admitted for free with a valid ID, on Saturday, March 30. A pair of 35-lap NASCAR Super Late Models races will anchor the evening's schedule, and kids 12 and under get in free with a ticketed adult.
2019 Bullring NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Opening Night
USLCI Bandolero Bandits 12-lap feature
- Sabastian Lafia; 2. Ashton Leonard (-2.718 seconds); 3. Max Romzek (-8.794); 4. Alexis Bjork (-10.812); 5. James Starcher (-10.976); 6. Kyle Crouch (-14.565); 7. Logan Gresser (-15.746); 8. A.J. Blackwill (-16.383).
USLCI Bandolero Outlaws 12-lap feature
- Chloe Lynch; 2. Brendan Tracy (-.267 of a second); 3. Landon Gresser (-.496); 4. Owen Romzek (-1.228); 5. Haylee Morris (-9.200); 6. Katie Crouch (-5 laps).
Skid Plate Cars 15-lap feature
- Dennis Dowell. 2. Cindy Clark (-1.740 seconds); 3. William Good (-9.601); 4. Billy Paddack (-15.232); 5. John Petsco (-1 lap); 6. Ben Williams (-2 laps); 7. Robert Leany (-3 laps); 8. Matt Esposito (-4 laps); 9. T.J. Cotter (-9 laps); 10. John Whitaker (-11 laps).
NASCAR Bombers 25-lap feature
- Kyle Jacks; 2. Vinny Raucci Jr. (-.895 of a second); 3. Adam Simon (-1.118); 4. Michael Miller (-1.659); 5. Anthony Mann (-3.511); 6. Tia Guy (-1 lap); 7. Tim Maserang (-1 lap); 8. Jacob Quartaro (-1 lap); 9. Carl Duryee (-2 laps); 10. Steve Dewey (-3 laps); 11. Trista Vanderploeg (-4 laps); 12. Matthew Cunningham Jr. (-5 laps).
USLCI Legends 25-lap feature
- Jason Irwin; 2. Jaron Giannini (-.453 of a second); 3. Braden Rogers (-2.809); 4. Branden Giannini (-10.567); 5. Dylan Fabozzi (-11.157); 6. John Hans (-11.710); 7. Gary Wegener (-14.259); 8. Brian Williams (-16.538); 9. Jordan Holloway (-17.313); 10. Bruce Silver (-1 lap); 11. Cody Brown (-1 lap); 12. Enzo Lalama (-1 lap); 13. Amilleo Thomson (-2 laps); 14. Jeff Regier (-4 laps).
NASCAR Super Stocks 25-lap feature
- Sam Jacks; 2. Matt Larsen (-3.630 seconds); 3. Ethan DeGuevara (-12.137); 4. Camden Larsen (-12.916); 5. Jim Merlino (-20.446).
NASCAR 602 Modifieds 35-lap feature
- Doug Hamm; 2. Mason Sargent (-.449 of a second); 3. Brian Reed (-3.250); 4. Ron Reed (-6.385); 5. Pat Petrie (-9.283); 6. Zachery Nicholls (-9.298); 7. Court Connell (-11.933); 8. Kyle Keller (-16.009); 9. Tom Pfundstein (-1 lap); 10. Mark Allison (-1 lap); 11. Jimmy Petrie (-1 lap); 12. Dan Root Jr. (-10 laps).
Southwest Tour Trucks 35-lap feature
- John Newhouse; 2. Jeremiah Wagner (-1.270 seconds); 3. Ronnie Davis (-4.174); 4. Mike Kelperis (-10.712); 5. Drew Reitsman (-16.231); 6. Gary Howard (-1 lap); 7. Curtis Burns (-13 laps).
NASCAR Super Late Models 50-lap feature
- Chris Clyne; 2. Scott Gafforini (-.785 of a second); 3. Kayli Barker (-12.061); 4. Johnny Spilotro (-12.646); 5. Steve Anderson (-1 lap); 6. David Anderson (-13 laps); 7. Luke Hall (-19 laps); 8. Tyler Fabozzi (-46 laps).
Thunder Cars 15-lap feature (Friday night)
- Chris Bosley; 2. Doug Germano (-.378 of a second).