Easton-based Tarlton Racing wrapped up its second straight King of the West sprint car championship – with different drivers each season – Saturday night in Stockton.
Driver Kyle Hirst of Paradise won his third career title in California’s premier racing series for winged cars powered by 410-cubic-inch engines. Last season, 19-year-old Carson Macedo of Lemoore won the title and used it as a springboard to a 2016 season barnstorming in the Midwest.
It was a good final night of the Northern California racing season for central San Joaquin Valley cars. Tim Kaeding of San Jose drove the Fresno-based Roth Motorsports car to victory in the KWS 30-lapper on the three-eighths mile clay oval at the San Joaquin County Fairgrounds, and Jason Meyers of Clovis won the season-finale for the Civil War Series (winged 360-cubic-inch sprinters).
The night drew 30 KWS cars and 49 Civil War cars, making it one of the biggest nights of the season.
The Tarlton team had to sweat out the championship. Protecting a 28-point lead coming in, Hirst crashed in his qualifying heat race, but raced his way into the points-paying main event by winning the B main and then finished high enough to clinch the title.
Rico Abreu of Napa Valley was second behind Kaeding. Jason Solwold of Washington state was third, Cory Eliason of Kingsburg fourth and Bud Kaeding of Campbell fifth. Bud Kaeding, Tim’s brother, was runner-up for the second straight year in the points race driving the Oakhurst-based Williams Motorsports car.
In the Civil War feature, Hanford’s DJ Netto finished second, Abreu third, Fresno’s Dominic Scelzi fourth and Andy Forsberg of Auburn fifth to wrap up his second straight series title. Giovanni Scelzi, Dominic’s 14-year-old brother, had the best passing job in the feature.
Netto was among the many drivers pulling double-duty but had car trouble in the KWS feature.
USAC/CRA – The U.S. Auto Club national 410 wingless sprint car series began its Western swing Friday and Saturday nights at Arizona Speedway in Queen Creek with Chris Windom of Illinois sweeping the feature wins Friday and Saturday.
Richard Vander Weerd of Visalia, who’s second in the Southern California-based USAC/California Racing Association series points chase, had feature finishes of 11th Friday and sixth Saturday.
Macedo joined the series for the Western swing and had feature finishes of 16th Friday and ninth Saturday.
Hanford native Chad Boespflug, who was second to Windom in an exciting finish Oct. 15 in Terre Haute, Indiana, was fast qualifier Saturday and finished 12th in the feature. He was seventh Friday.
The series moves to Perris in Southern California this Thursday through Saturday.