MAY 13, 2018… While most of the competitors chose the bottom groove, Richard Vander Weerd (Visalia, California) used the outside line to claim last Saturday’s USAC West Coast Sprint Car triumph at Hanford. Taking the lead on the eighth circuit, Vander Weerd and sailed to the Keller Auto Speedway checkered flags ahead of fast qualifier Jace Vander Weerd, Tristan Guardino, point leader Austin Liggett, and Ryan Timmons.
Starting on the pole position, Richard Vander Weerd had slipped back to third at the opening lap. Switching to the top groove of the reconfigured oval, the 2011 champion used extra momentum to charge forward. Once out front, Richard shook free from the field and earned his first $1,500 win of the campaign.
Racing the family owned #10 Vander Weerd Construction / Stone Gate Development Maxim, Richard Vander Weerd scored the 20th series win of his career. Earlier in the night, Richard qualified second out of thirteen racers and finished second to Guardino in his heat race. Vander Weerd left the Kings County Fairgrounds tied for third in points with two Woodland Auto Display Fast Time Awards, two heat race victories, three top-10 finishes, and 23 feature laps led.
Jace Vander Weerd (Visalia, California) earned the night’s Saldana Racing Products / Racing Optics Hard Charger / “Best Passing Job” honors with a second place run from fifth. Piloting the family owned #88 Vander Weerd Construction / Stone Gate Development Maxim, Vander Weerd posted his 8th career Woodland Auto Display Fast Time Award and placed third in his 10-lap heat race. Heading to Tulare’s “Peter Murphy Classic,” Jace is sixth in the point chase with one heat race victory and three top-10 finishes.
After starting third and leading the first seven laps, Tristan Guardino (Fremont, California) restarted from the back after a trip to the work area and charged to a third place finish. Driving the family owned #15T Dorso’s Automotive / Allied Auto Sales Maxim, Guardino was fourth quick in time trials and raced to victory in the Keizer Aluminum Wheels / Rod End Supply Heat Race #2. Tristan has climbed to second in points with two heat race victories, three top-10 finishes, and 12 feature laps led.
Austin Liggett (Tracy, California) scored fourth at Keller Auto Speedway at Kings Fairgrounds. Racing the family owned #83 Excel Environmental Services / Lucas Oil Maxim, Liggett qualified third overall and won the night’s 10-lap Extreme Mufflers Heat Race #1. Austin heads to Tulare with a 24-point advantage on the strength of three top-10 finishes, and 28 feature laps led to his credit.
Ryan Timmons (Pleasant Hill, California) placed fifth in the Hanford main event. Piloting the family owned #29T Timmons Auto Truck & Repair / Snap-On Tools Maxim, Timmons was fifth fast in time trials and ran second to Austin Liggett in his heat race. The 2016 Rookie of the Year ranks eighth in the point standings with two top-10 finishes on the season.
The USAC West Coast Sprint Car Series returns to action this Friday and Saturday, May 18th & 19th, at Tulare’s Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway. The “5th Annual Peter Murphy Classic” will also feature the Winged 360 Sprint Car Challenge Tour and Legends of Kearney Bowl Vintage Cars on Friday. Saturday’s card will also showcase the King of the West – NARC Sprint Cars and the Legends of Kearney Bowl Vintage Cars. Located at the Tulare County Fairgrounds in Tulare, California at the corner of Bardsley and K Streets, more information can be found at www.tularethunderbowl.com or by calling 559.688.0909.
USAC WEST COAST SPRINT CAR SERIES RACE RESULTS: May 12, 2018 – Hanford, California – Keller Auto Speedway at Kings Fairgrounds
WOODLAND AUTO DISPLAY QUALIFICATIONS: 1. Jace Vander Weerd, 88, Vander Weerd-16.181; 2. Richard Vander Weerd, 10, Vander Weerd-16.317; 3. Austin Liggett, 83, Liggett-16.710; 4. Tristan Guardino, 15T, Guardino-16.908; 5. Ryan Timmons, 29T, Timmons-17.111; 6. Steve Hix, 57, Hix-17.271; 7. Shannon McQueen, 7, Van Meter-17.363; 8. Brent Owens, 71, Martin-17.493; 9. Britton Bock, 67, Bock-17.493; 10. Koen Shaw, 88K, 17.733; 11. Ryan Stolz, 72, Ford-17.892; 12. Austin Ervine, 51, AJ-18.098; 13. Hobie Conway, 7K, Kruseman-18.243.
EXTREME MUFFLERS FIRST HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Liggett, 2. Timmons, 3. J.Vander Weerd, 4. Bock, 5. McQueen, 6. Conway, 7. Stolz. NT
KEIZER ALUMINUM WHEELS / ROD END SUPPLY SECOND HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Guardino, 2. R.Vander Weerd, 3. Shaw, 4. Hix, 5. Owens, 6. Ervine. NT
FEATURE: (30 laps – With Starting Positions) 1. Richard Vander Weerd (1st), 2. Jace Vander Weerd (5th), 3. Tristan Guardino (3rd), 4. Austin Liggett (4th), 5. Ryan Timmons (2nd), 6. Koen Shaw (6th), 7. Steve Hix (8th), 8. Shannon McQueen (9th), 9. Hobie Conway (11th), 10. Britton Bock (7th), 11. Austin Ervine (12th), 12. Brent Owens (10th), 13. Ryan Stolz (13th). NT
**Stolz flipped on lap 13 of the feature.
FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-7 Guardino, Laps 8-30 R.Vander Weerd,
SALDANA RACING PRODUCTS / RACING OPTICS HARD CHARGER: Jace Vander Weerd (5th to 2nd)
USAC WEST COAST SPRINT CAR POINT STANDINGS:
1. Austin Liggett-279, 2. Tristan Guardino-255, 3. Richard Vander Weerd-238, -. Steve Hix-238, 5. Koen Shaw-227, 6. Jace Vander Weerd-216, 7. Shannon McQueen-203, 8. Ryan Timmons-202, 9. Britton Bock-177, 10. Austin Ervine-159, 11. Ryan Stolz-153, –. Danny Faria Jr.-153, 13. Brandon Wiley-140, 14. Ryan Bernal-131, 15. Trent Carter-107, 16. Hobie Conway-87, 17. Troy Rutherford-82, 18. Brody Roa-77, –. Kevin Barnes-77, 20. Jake Swanson-74.
2018 USAC WEST COAST SPRINT CAR SCHEDULE
May 18: Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA (Peter Murphy Classic)
May 19: Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA (Peter Murphy Classic)
June 2: Merle Stone Chevrolet Thunderbowl Raceway – Tulare, CA (Chris & Brian Faria Memorial)
June 9: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA (Ron Otto Memorial)
June 30: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Battle at the Beach Race #1)
July 14: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Battle at the Beach Race #2)
July 28: Bakersfield Speedway – Bakersfield, CA
August 11: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA (Bud Stanfield Memorial)
August 25: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Battle at the Beach Race #3)
October 6: Santa Maria Raceway – Santa Maria, CA (Championship Night)
November 21: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Turkey Night Grand Prix / Non-Points)
November 22: Ventura Raceway – Ventura, CA (Turkey Night Grand Prix / Battle at the Beach Race #4 / Non-Points)
This schedule is subject to change.
#10 Richard Vander Weerd – Hanford Feature Winner. Photo by Lance Jennings / SCRAFAN.COM.