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DAVIS FLYS IN, WINS 4TH LATE MODEL MAIN – CAMERON EARNS 1ST TRUCK FEATURE VICTORY

DAVIS FLYS IN, WINS 4TH LATE MODEL MAIN – CAMERON EARNS 1ST TRUCK FEATURE VICTORY
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Irwindale, Ca. - Apr. 30, 2011 –  Auto Club Late Model point leader Brandon Davis flew 658 miles to Southern California on a private jet late Saturday afternoon after racing the No. 10 Ford in the K & N Pro Series-West road race Saturday afternoon. The 2.2-mile Miller Motorsports Park road course event in Tooele, Utah, near Salt Lake City, was scheduled for 50 laps and ran 63 laps because of late race cautions and a pair of green, white checkered flags. The 25-year old Huntington Beach resident arrived at Toyota Speedway at Irwindale barely in time to make his qualifying run in the HPR Applied Computer Service Chevy as the final qualifier at 8:04 pm. He posted third fastest time of 18 drivers and started the ACLM 50-lap race second, with a four car inversion. He drove to his fourth victory in four events this season.

Davis earned 2010 ACLM rookie of the year honors after he finished eighth in points. He continued his sensational 2011 year and led all but the first ten laps on the half-mile He won his first ACLM feature in the final point race last October, so he has five in a row and counting. Davis admitted he was a bit tired from his long race day and aerial commute to race at Irwindale. In Utah he was the sixth fastest qualifier (of 34 drivers) and was racing in fourth place on a lap 55 restart when he was involved in a two-car crash and sidelined. Davis and Erica, his fiancee of four weeks, winged from the Tooele airport adjacent to the road circuit to El Monte Airport, a few miles from the Irwindale track. A brief ride in Erica's car from El Monte enabled Davis to qualify for a position near the front instead of starting from the back (row ten). Greg Pursley, the 2004 Irwindale track, California State and Whelen National Series champion, won the Utah 2 hour, 19 minute race in the Gene Price Ford.

ACLM qualifying was scheduled to follow a Southwest Tour Truck 35-lap race. That 12-truck event started at 7:07 pm and had a serious-looking two truck crash on lap 2. An 11-minute red flag ensued as emergency crewmen removed Gus Nanos' badly damaged truck that was pinned against the third turn wall on the drivers side. Nanos was not injured seriously. Cecil Phelps involved truck restarted. The SWT Truck main concluded at 7:35. Eighteen ACLM drivers qualified from 7:46-8:05 with Davis just making it on time to his race car in the staging area outside the backstretch. Showing how successful April has been for Davis, on April 1 he asked Erica to marry him via a message on the hood of his No. 55 Chevy and she said yes after being speechless momentarily. After winning two April 2 ACLM mains the next day, he returned on April 16 and won again. The next day he returned to the Long Beach GP street circuit for Sunday morning qualifying. Following the Indy Car race, won by Mike Conway, Davis won his second sports car portion of the LBGP. Davis qualified near the front for the SCCA Pirelli World Challenge 31-lap race and led the final 21 laps after passing the leader on the inside at turn 8 as they entered the backstretch. That race was televised in a 90-minute telecast on the Versus Network Saturday at noon and again Monday, May 2.

The other memorable Irwindale main event winner Saturday was six-year super truck veteran Todd Cameron. The 44-year old aerospace engineer raced his No. 99 Chevy S-10 to a dramatic, first-ever main event triumph after numerous podium finishes in recent years. After driving in all 13 races and finishing eighth in West Coast Pro Truck 2005 points to earn rookie of the year, he sold that truck and bought Eric Hardin's No. 01 SuperTruck that had one victory in 2004 and won Hardin rookie of the year as the highest rookie in points (sixth). Hardin only raced eight of 14 SuperTruck races in 2005 before moving up to the NASCAR GN West Series. Cameron, from Monrovia, put his number 99 on it and raced the super truck each year since 2006. He finished 12th, 5th, 7th, 6th and 2nd in succeeding years in the tough King Taco Super Truck Series. He has finished second eight times, including five times last season, with eight third place and four P. 4 finishes in the last five years. Cameron set fastest qualifying time Saturday afternoon in the 19-truck field. That evening he started fifth via the inversion number and raced in a tight five truck pack during the first ten laps of the 40-lap main. The race had four leaders—Matt Kimball (L 1-2), Dennis Arena (L 3-8), Ryan Partridge (L9-37) and Cameron (L 38-40). He won by several lengths (0.546). Making his initial victory special was the fact he outran and beat the reigning series champion, who won the first ten races of 14 races last year en-route to his KTST title. Partridge edged KTST championship runner-up Cameron by 24 points last year and also won the 2011 season opener on April 2.

Other main event winners were Jeff Williams, who led all but the first lap of the 35-lap SWT Truck race on the half-mile. That opened the racy evening in front of about 2,000 fans on $2.00 night for beers and hot dogs. Danny Nikolai, 13, led the final 12 laps of a 20-lap Jan's Towing Bandolero main on the third-mile. Nikolai also won a 16-car INEX 20-lap main event Friday night during the all-division 5:00 to 9:00 pm open practice session. The final race Saturday had 12 starters in a Pick Your Part Outlaw Figure 8 race. Quickest qualifier Rod Proctor, from Riverside, returned to [email protected] for the first time in a year and led all 20 laps from pole position. Ten cars finished with three cars on the lead lap. The race had two red flags to remove cars stalled in precarious positions on the track. Four-time series champion Steve Stewart started second and chased Proctor all the way. He finished 2.134 in back of the winner at the 10:12 pm conclusion.

ACLM 50: Dylan Lupton, a 17-year old series rookie and 2010 S2 champion, was fourth fastest qualifier and led the first ten laps from pole position. Davis slipped to third position on the initial lap at 9:20. He regained second on the third lap and battled closely with his HPR teammate Lupton to lap 11 when Davis took command for good with an inside pass exiting the fourth turn. He opened a straightaway lead by lap 30 despite a brief caution flag on lap 15 for a single car spin and the resultant double-file restart. Past NASCAR western touring series champion Sean Woodside, 40, made his first Whelen Series point race appearance of the season and charged from seventh to second by lap 25 when he went around Lupton in turn two. Fastest qualifier Tim Huddleston, 40, nipped his rookie protege on lap 26 for third place. Action that captivated fans attention was the P. 5-10 precise, wheel-to-wheel racing exhibited by Chris Holloway, Kyle McGrady, Toni Marie McCray, Mike Johnson, Brandon Loverock and HPR rookie Nik Romano, a USAC Ford Focus Midget winning driver. Positions changed at times. On lap 34 P. 7 Johnson made contact with the left rear of McGrady's P. 6 car as they came onto the front straight. Both cars spun across the starting line to the third-mile first turn without making wall contact. Both cars continued onto the backstretch after losing several positions and the race stayed green. Holloway trailed fourth place Lupton at the checkers. McCray, Romano, rookie Devon Ostheimer, 17, Johnson and McGrady completed the top ten. Fifteen of 20 starters finished the 20-minute event, with 12 drivers on the lead lap. Runner-up Woodside cut into Davis' lead a bit in the closing laps and trailed by 40-yards (2.345 seconds) at the finish. Ironically, just as Davis flew from Utah to his home track and won a Saturday night feature, Dylan Kwasniewski, the driver also eliminated in Davis' Utah crash did the same thing. The 15-year old driver flew to his Las Vegas “Bullring” home track and won a 40-lap super late model main Saturday night.

KTST 40: Just before the ACLM race, 19 competitive super trucks started the King Taco Super Truck 40. As in the late model race, a group of leading trucks raced in a close pack and thrilled fans with frequent position changes. Cameron, whose wife and pre-teen daughter and son were in the main grandstand, used new right side tires to his advantage to score his $1,000 victory. It was a tribute to his perseverance and past close calls to the top step of the podium. The 28-minute race had three cautions and double-file restarts. Cameron took second from Dennis Arena on lap 27 and then used the inside groove lap after lap as he challenged Partridge for the lead. He was within half a length of the lead from laps 33-37 and then made his winning pass without contact on the backstretch entering the third turn. Cameron moved up in front of Partridge cleanly as they exited turn four on lap 38 and opened a five-yard winning margin during the closing laps. “I yelled out loud inside the truck at the finish,” the happy winner said. He thanked his sponsors—Bowden Development Co. and Speeding TicketDude.com—for their support. After the top three drivers stopped for post-race interviews, runner-up Partridge walked over to Cameron, shook his hand and congratulated him. Former late model driver Arena was third. Connor Cantrell, Kenny Maler, Jr., M. Kimball, Lucas McNeil, Ryan Fortier, Philip Lauck and Jameson Spies completed the top ten. All were within 5.9 seconds of the winner and 17 of 18 finishers ran all 40 laps in a 28-minute contest. Showing how close the top two finishers were, Partridge ran the fastest lap of 19.895 (90.475 mph) on lap 3. Cameron ran the second fastest lap of 19.949 (90.230 mph) on lap 7.

SWT TRUCKS 35: The first of seven series events at Irwindale this season had 12 trucks on line to start competition. FQ J. Williams, the 2006-07 series champion, started seventh and was third after one lap. He took command on lap 2 and opened a three-quarters of a straightaway lead by lap 25. Williams lapped up to third place and won by 1.182 over Neil Conrad, with Brady Helm 2.141 back. A lap 32 solo truck spin cut into his winning margin. Ed Cutler and Kirk Knostman completed the top five. Ten drivers completed the 16-minute race.

PYP FIGURE: Proctor won by 30-yards (2.134) over four-time F-8 track champion Steve Stewart, winner of the April 9 season opener. Andrew Schoening was16-seconds back. Jay Henson, Jerry Toporek and Willem Voesten, in his new Figure 8 creation, were a lap down. Ten cars were still racing at the conclusion. Proctor, the 2004 F-8 track champion, also set fast time and won two Irwindale PYP F-8 races in 2009.

BANDOS: An opening lap crash at the green took out three cars on the front straight. Three-time 2011 winner Christian McGhee was hit and spun and his car sidelined. Winner Nikolai passed Brandon “Shorty” Weaver on lap 9 and won a 20-lap main for the second night in a row. Mikael Lovas came from fifth to earn second, 0.246 back and Weaver followed. Rookie Ricky Lewis, Ricky Schlick, Ryan Dunkleberger, R. J. Stearns, Blaine Perkins, newcomer Tony Lamas and Troy Wesolowski rounded out the top ten. Fifteen of 20 starters completed the race and all ran 20 laps. On Friday night Nikolai started third in a 16-car field of drivers age 8-14. He beat McGhee by 0.349 with Schlick 0.995 back. Lovas, Mike Womack, Lewis, Wesolowski,, Ivan Gudmestad, Stearns and Dunkleberger were next in order. All 16 starters finished and 14 ran all 20 laps in a ten-minute race with two cautions for spins. Nikolai made an inside turn two pass on lap 9, but he had to go back to second because another driver spun that lap. On the restart he again made an inside pass for the lead, but he did so entering the third turn this time. Lovas,13, set a new track record of 18.151 (66.046 mph) to beat the six-day old mark of 18.189 (65.308 mph) set by Stearns.