Eric Holmes of Escalon won his third straight Madera Speedway Short Track Shootout on Saturday night.
The final points race of the season for the track’s Late Model stock cars paid $10,000 to win and drew a field of 44 cars, many in town for the first time in 2016. Holmes, one of those dropping in, was the class of the 26-car main event field, starting on the pole and leading 89 of 125 laps around the third-mile paved oval including the final 57.
Matt Erickson of La Grange, who had already wrapped up the season championship before the night began with a dominating year, started 10th and finished second. Donny St. Ours of Upland, who started on the front row, went to the back after a crash but rallied for third place. Track regulars Bryan Herzog of Clovis and Logan Zampa of Napa rounded out the top five.
Two Modesto drivers, track regular Garland Tyler and Adam Coonfield, were sixth and seventh, former Stockton 99 Speedway champion Dominic Lopez of San Leandro was eighth, David Ross of Colton ninth and Rick Thompson of Fresno 10th.
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Dylan Cappello of Peoria, Ariz., won the 75-lap Modifieds feature, worth $3,000. Kyle Tellstrom of Ukiah was second, Matthew Hicks of Lakeside third, Taylor Miinch of El Cajon fourth and Scott Winters of Tracy fifth.
Other feature winners were Austin Herzog (Jr. Late Models), Chuck Dozhier (Super Hobby Stocks) and Adam Lemke (WSRA Mini Cups).
Tulare Thunderbowl Raceway – Easton-based Tarlton Racing moved closer to securing its second straight King of the West 410 sprint cars season championship with strong weekend finishes at Thunderbowl and Ocean Speedway in Watsonville.
Kyle Hirst of Paradise, who replaced 2015 champion Carson Macedo of Lemoore in the Tarlton car, won Saturday night in Tulare, a $3,500 payday. The third-mile clay oval was widened 15 feet since the last race there.
Bud Kaeding of Campbell in the Oakhurst-based Williams Motorsports car, second in season points, finished second in Saturday’s 30-lap feature. Justyn Cox of Clarksburg was third, Colby Copeland of Roseville fourth and DJ Netto of Hanford fifth. Also, Mitchell Faccinto of Hanford was seventh, Steven Kent of Fresno 10th, Jace Vander Weerd of Visalia 11th and Scott Parker of Coarsegold 12th. Craig Stidham of Fresno dropped out with mechanical troubles and was 18th, and Tim Kaeding of San Jose, in a Fresno-based Roth Motorsports car, crashed and was 19th. Buddy Kofoid of Penngrove, at age 14, became the series’ youngest fast qualifier, but mechanical troubles kept him out of the main event.
Friday night in Watsonville, hometown driver Justin Sanders scored his first series win ahead of Netto and Kingsburg racer Cory Eliason. Hirst rallied out of the B main event to finish fourth in the feature, one spot ahead of Bud Kaeding. Faccinto was 12th. Tim Kaeding and Fresno’s Dominic Scelzi didn’t finish.
Other feature winners in Tulare were season points leader Ronnie Gardner in the U.S. Auto Club Western States Midgets and Visalia’s Blake Robertson in Western RaceSaver 305 sprint cars. Michael Faccinto of Hanford was 10th in the Midgets feature but is still second in season points.
Et cetera – Macedo, who’s been barnstorming the Midwest this season, had a solid weekend at the USAC National Gold Crown Midget Nationals in Illinois with a second and a fifth.