AZ (November 10) A turnout of 84 cars for the first round action in the
Checker Auto Parts/Budweiser Western World championships at Manzanita Speedway
led to a late start and then a rash of accidents had the races finishing well
after midnight. When the final flag fell on the 14 event program, Jerry Coons,
Jr. and Cory Kruseman stood in the winner’s circle.
Coons, Jr., a native of Tucson, currently
ranked eighth in USAC National sprint car standings, did his part in speeding
up the show as he won the 25 lap USAC feature on Manzanita Speedway’s half
mile track in a record time of
8:10.81 which translates to an average speed of 92.196 mph.
He started fifth in the 25 car field, took the lead from Mike Spencer
on the 16th lap and threaded his way through lapped traffic to
score the first win of the year for his car owners.
who is ranked sixth in USAC/CRA points held off
Damion Gardner the USAC/CRA points leader for second. USAC national
points leader Levi Jones finished fourth ahead of his nearest rival for the
driving championship, Dave Darland. Rounding out the top ten were Jay Drake,
Rip Williams, Bud Kaeding, Josh Wise and Tracy Hines.
gives those drivers a leg up on securing starting berths in Saturday night’s
40 lap feature. The points from Thursday night will be added to the Friday
night points to determine positions Saturday night.
the feature was free of incidents the first competitive race, the “C”
main, did not get through the first turn before a red flag stopped action
after Matt Rossi slammed the wall and flipped. He walked away uninjured and
after the restart it was ten straight green flag laps with Mike Martin taking
the win over Justin Marvel, Dickie Gaines and Bob Ream, Jr. who all
transferred to the “B” main.
Hagen went wire to wire in the “B” where four main event berths were up
for grabs. Bud Kaeding, a two time Western World champion, finished second,
Tracy Hines third and Josh Wise in fourth.
held off Bryan Clausen, Jones and Spencer in the first ten lap heat. The
second heat went to Jeremy Sherman, the 2001 Western winner. Also transferring
to the feature were Brad Sweet, Coons and Shane Cottle. Josh Ford took the win
in the third heat by beating Jay Drake, the 2000 Western winner, R.J. Johnson
and Gardner. Danny Sheridan was a wire to wire winner in the fourth heat with
Dave Darland, up from eighth, taking second ahead of Ryan Pace and Rickie
Gaunt. The fifth heat was won by John Scott over Cory Kruseman, Williams and
Bill Rose. Jesse Hockett caught the fence and vaulted high in the air in an
end over end flip on the first lap. He was not injured.
starting late the time trials produced the fastest field ever assembled for a
Western. The Six year old one lap record was broken three times and 12 drivers
were timed in the 18 second bracket. Damion Gardner, the tenth driver to
qualify, was the first to break Brad Noffsinger’s
one lap record when he tripped the clock at 18.520 but he was only
third fastest in the 51 car field. Jones, the 37th driver to battle
the clock, smashed the mark with
a time of 18.301, 98.255 mph. Coons
was next out and he was at 18.453. The old mark was 18.551.
WESTERN WORLD RESULTS AT MANZANITA SPEEDWAY
SPRINTS (1/2 MILE TRACK)
Event: 1. Jerry Coons, Jr. 2. Mike Spencer 3. Damion Gardner 4. Levi Jones 5.
Dave Darland 6. Jay Drake 7. Rip Williams 8. Bud Kaeding 9. Josh Wise 10.
Tracy Hines 11. Rickie Gaunt 12. Bill Rose 13. Bryan Clauson 14. Shane Cottle
15. Jeremy Sherman 16. Brad Sweet 17. Danny Sheridan 18. Josh Ford 19. Charles
Davis, Jr. 20. Dickie Gaines 21. Ryan Pace 22. Cory Kruseman 23. R.J. Johnson
24. John Scott 25. Darren Hagan (25 laps, time: 8:10.81, new track record)
leaders: laps 1-15 Spencer, laps 16-25 Coons
heat: 1. Charles Davis, Jr. 2.
Bryan Clauson 3. Levi Jones 4. Mike Spencer 5. Davey Ray 6. Seth Wilson 7.
Jordan Hermansader 8. Rick Ziehl
Heat: 1. Jeremy Sherman 2. Brad Sweet 3. Jerry Coons, Jr. 4. Shane Cottle 5.
Jon Stanbrough 6. Mat Neely 7. Mike Leslie 8. Tracy Hines (10 laps, time:
Heat: 1. Josh Ford 2. Jay Drake 3. R.J. Johnson 4. Damion Gardner 5. Bud
Kaeding 6. Rodney Argo 7. Casey Shuman 8. Adam Mitchell
Heat: 1. Danny Sheridan 2. Dave Darland 3. Ryan Pace 4. Rickie Gaunt 5. Tom
Hessert 6. Josh Wise 7. Mike Kirby 8. Ben Gregg (8 laps, time: 3:14.23)
Heat: 1. John Scott 2. Cory Kruseman 3. Rip Williams 4. Bill Rose 5. Darren
Hagen 6. Tom Ogle 7. Chuck Buckman 8. Jesse Hockett
Main: 1. Darren Hagen 2. Bud Kaeding 3. Tracy Hines 4. Josh Wise 5. Mat Neely
6. Mike Kirby 7. Mike Leslie 8. Jon Stanbrough 9. Jordan Hermansader 10. Tom
Hessert 11. Casey Shuman 12. Ben Gregg 13. Davey Ray 14. Tom Ogle 15. Dickie
Gaines 16. Mike Martin 17. Bob Ream, Jr. 18. Justin Marvel 19. Chuck Buckman
20. Rick Ziehl 21. Seth Wilson 22. Rodney Argo 23. Adam Mitchell
Main: 1. Mike Martin 2. Justin Marvel 3. Dickie Gaines 4. Bob Ream, Jr. 5.
Keith Williamson 6. Mark Deskovick 7. Brandon Lane 8. Ronnie Clark