Phoenix, Az (Sept. 3)...An early pit stop and a rocket fast Chris Bonneau
kept Jeremy Sherman from scoring what would have been a record tying 13th main
event in Saturday night's Arizona Sprint Car Association outing on Manzanita
Speedway's half mile track.
While the rest of the Valley was being hit with dust and rain the track was one
of the few areas spared and those that drove through the storm to get to the
Southwest Phoenix track were rewarded with a great display of driving on Bonneau's
Manzy did not completely escape the weather. A brief dust stop hit the track
during warm-ups and a light sprinkle of rain fell during driver introductions
for the feature.
Bonneau started in the front row while Sherman, the overwhelming favorite, lined
up eighth in the 24 car field. Chris had the lead going into the first turn and
Sherman was quickly into second but the yellow flag came out when Thomas Ogle
slammed the wall while working the third lap and Sherman headed to the pits to
replace a right rear tire.
On the restart Hood and Mike Bonneau made contact and the cars hooked together
bringing out another quick yellow. Both cars sustained damaged that sidelined
When the green flag was displayed Sherman was in 18th as several cars were out
early. While he was trying to get to the front Bonneau built as much as a half
lap lead over the field with Sherman even further back. Bonneau turned almost
every lap in the 19 second bracket about one and a half seconds quicker than his
Bonneau, who lapped all but the top six drivers behind him, encountered heavy
traffic and another youngster, J.T. Imperial, closed the gap. They were running
less than three car lengths apart when Imperial's sprinter blew a rear end and
he coasted to a stop with two laps remaining.
Sherman had moved to second and made up ground with the yellow but four lapped
cars separated the two leaders. That was all Bonneau needed and he sped to his
first ever main event win, only his second top five finish of the year. He had a
2.76 advantage over Sherman, who had not made it past one of the lapped cars, at
the checkered flag.
Nathan High finished third, Seainn Hendricsen fourth and Bobby Boone fifth. Jeff
Henry and Marty Miller were the only other drivers able to stay on the lead lap.
Andy Reinbold, Ben Gregg and Tim Beal rounded out the top ten. Sherman was
hoping to tie the record held by Bob Ream, Jr. for the most wins in a season. He
has four more races to try for the record.
Shermans second place finish, coupled with a 13th place for second ranked
Josh Pelkey who dropped out on the 23rd lap, virtually clinched the driving
title for Sherman and also the owners championship for Fred Bryan, owner of
the #77 sprinter. Sherman holds an unofficial 770 point lead over Pelkey and
even if Pelkey scored clean sweeps in the remaining four races he would earn
only 980 points. If Sherman enters those four races he would receive 100 show up
points and would need to only start three of the main events to take his first
ever driving title. The car has even more points as Ream drove it the week
Sherman served out a one race suspension for alleged rough driving. Ream won his
heat and was fourth in the feature.
Chuck Buckman turned in the night's fastest qualifying lap at 20.439 but never
made it to a green flag in competitive racing. He started in the back row of the
Arizona Race Mart trophy dash and shared the back row with second quickest Ricky
Hood who was making a rare non winged race on Manzy's half mile track. The two
cars made contact as the green flag waved and Buckman apparently ran over a
wheel on the Hood car and did a series of violent end over end flips as the cars
exited turn four. He was alert and talking as the paramedics helped him from the
car and reportedly sustained no serious injuries.
Sherman, the night's third fastest qualifier, scored his sixth trophy dash win
of the year over Bobby Boone and Hood.
Jay Ervine scored his third heat race win of the season in winning the first
heat. Ben Gregg made a good drive from fifth to take second and Pelkey moved
from sixth to third. Polesitter Ryan Linder earned a spot in the feature with
his fourth place finish.
Mike Bonneau became the 28th different driver to win a heat race this year as he
went wire to wire in the second eight lapper. Nathan High came from sixth to
finish second and Sherman was third after starting seventh. The final main event
transfer position went to Steve Sandrolini.
Seainn Hendricsen survived a wild third heat race to score his second heat win
of the year. Bobby Boone started seventh and finished second with Imperial in
third ahead of Scott Pasmore, the early leader until he encountered handling
Chris Bonneau showed the power in his Hank Brothers Construction sprinter as he
shot from fourth to first and easily scored his third heat win. Ogle finished
second, fifth starting Marty Miller was third and Tim Beal earned the final main
The final eight spots in the feature were filled in the running of the semi
main. Hood had the pole and made it look easy in taking the win. Bob Ream, Jr.
nursed his car to a second place finish. Jeff Henry was third ahead of Andy
Reinbold. Brian Hacker, Matt Rossi, Bernie Smith and Bruce St. James took the
remaining main event spots. The Sprint cars hit their average of 33 cars but
Mike Leslie had mechanical problems in hot laps and did not compete. Trey Dean
did not qualify and Jessie Stone, like Leslie, was unable to compete.
Although the weather hurt the attendance the ASCA managed to raise well over
$5,000 for the Salvation Army's hurricane relief fund.
SUMMARY-ARIZONA SPRINT CAR ASSOCIATION
Main Event: 1. Chris Bonneau 2. Jeremy Sherman 3. Nathan High 4. Seainn
Hendricsen 5. Bobby Boone 6. Jeff Henry 7. Marty Miller 8. Andy Reinbold 9. Ben
Gregg 10. Tim Beal 11. Bruce St. James 12. Steve Sandrolini 13. Josh Pelkey 14.
Matt Rossi 15. Jay Ervine 16. J.T. Imperial 17. Ryan Linder 18. Bernie Smith 19.
Mike Bonneau 20. Bob Ream, Jr. 21. Ricky Hood 22. Thomas Ogle 23. Mike Martin
24. Brian Hacker
Lap leaders: laps 1-25 Bonneau
1st Heat: 1. Jay Ervine 2. Ben Gregg 3. Josh Pelkey 4. Ryan Linder 5. Bernie
Smith 6. Bruce St. James 7. Ricky Hood
2nd Heat: 1. Mike Bonneau 2. Nathan High 3. Jeremy Sherman 4. Steve Sandrolini
5. Brian Hacker 6. Matt Rossi 7. Shon Deskins
3rd Heat: 1. Seainn Hendricsen 2. Bobby Boone 3. J.T. Imperial 4. Scott Pasmore
5. Don Keesler 6. Andy Reinbold 7. Mike Martin 8. Rick Ziehl
4th Heat: 1. Chris Bonneau 2. Tom Ogle 3. Marty Miller 4. Tim Beal 5. Jeff Henry
6. Bob Ream, Jr. 7. Johnny Williams, Jr.
Semi Main: 1. Ricky Hood 2. Bob Ream, Jr. 3. Jeff Henry 4. Andy Reinbold 5.
Brian Hacker 6. Matt Rossi 7. Bernie Smith 8. Bruce St. James 9. Rick Ziehl 10.
Don Keesler 11. Trey Deane 12. Johnny Williams, Jr. 13. Shon Deskins
Arizona Race Mart Trophy Dash: 1. Jeremy Sherman 2. Bobby Boone 3. Ricky Hood 4.
Qualifying: 1. Chuck Buckman (20.439) 2. Ricky Hood (20.475) 3. Jeremy Sherman
(20.504) 4. Bobby Boone (20.521) 5. Marty Miller (20.590) 6. Josh Pelkey
(20.647) 7. Nathan High (20.692) 8. Mike Martin (20.766) 9. Bob Ream, Jr.
(20.827) 10. Ben Gregg (20.910) 11. Shon Deskins (20.937) 12. Mike Bonneau
(20.994) 13. Andy Reinbold (21.098) 14. Jeff Henry (21.125) 15. Bernie Smith
(21.188)16. Brian Hacker (21.383) 17. Seainn Hendricsen (21.497) 18. Chris
Bonneau (21.535) 19. Bruce St. James (21.657) 20. Matt Rossi (21.676) 21. J.T.
Imperial (21.718) 22. Tim Beal (21.823) 23. Jay Ervine (21.973) 24. Scott
Pasmore (22.063) 25. Tom Ogle (22.128) 26. Ryan Linder (22.361) 27. Steve
Sandrolini (22.369) 28. Don Keesler (22.382) 29. Johnny Williams, Jr. (22.548)
30. Rick Ziehl (no time) 31. Trey Deane (no time) 32. Mike Leslie (no time) 33.
Jessie Stone (no time)
UNOFFICIAL ASCA POINTS (RACE #19)
1. Jeremy Sherman 3920
2. Josh Pelkey 3150
3. Jeff Henry 2831
4. Matt Rossi 2815
5. Nathan High 2764
6. Mike Martin 2502
7. Marty Miller 2479
8. Bernie Smith 2474
9. Jay Ervine 2356
10. Bobby Boone 2206