Bud Kaeding, driving the Oakhurst-based Williams Motorsports car, won the season-opening King of the West feature Saturday night in Placerville.
Kaeding, a third-generation racer from Campbell, came up 12 points short of 2015 season champion Carson Macedo of Lemoore, who’s racing this year in the Midwest.
Kaeding started on the pole but lost the lead to Willie Croft of Roseville on the quarter-mile red clay oval on the first lap. Croft led until lap 25, when he got caught in an accident involving lapped cars.
Kaeding led the rest of the way, withstanding a last-lap crash that caused the race to go an extra lap, to 31.
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Bobby McMahan of Elk Grove finished second followed by Jonathan Allard of Sacramento, Chase Johnson of Penngrove and Dominic Scelzi of Fresno.
Other central San Joaquin Valley results included Cory Eliason of Kingsburg, ninth; DJ Netto of Hanford, 10th; Kyle Hirst of Sacramento (driving this season for Easton-based Tarlton Racing), 11th; Mitchell Faccinto of Hanford, 13th; and Sean Watts of Atwater, 15th.
USAC sprint cars – D.J. Johnson of Stockton extended his season points lead with a victory Saturday night at Tulare’s Thunderbowl Raceway.
Richard Vander Weerd of Visalia was second and Tyler Walker of Los Angeles was third. Danny Faria Jr. of Tipton had the best passing job of the night, from 17th to finish sixth.