ASCS Sprints to Make First Ever Visit to California on February 9th
by Chris McWilliams on February 4, 2011
The Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by K&N Filters will make their first appearance ever in the state of California on Wednesday February 9, 2011 at Thunderbowl Raceway in Tulare. The ASCS will push off for their 20th season after their 2010 tour averaged about 60 sprint cars a race and saw a total of 19 different drivers in victory lane. The points fund for the 2011 ASCS season is a staggering $250,000 with the series champion taking home $60,000 for their efforts. The race at the Groppetti Automotive Thunderbowl Raceway will be the first of the season for the ASCS and is expected to bring out a strong field of racers including several Californian drivers. San Jose’s Tim Kaeding will be a strong favorite at Thunderbowl Raceway along with Elk Grove’s Kyle Larson and Easton’s Tommy Tarlton who have all seen a lot of laps at the track.
California's Tim Kaeding in 2010 (Image Credit: H2H Photos)
Driving for Central Valley based Roth Motorsports “TK” last season grabbed three victories at the 1/3 mile clay oval, including the final night of the Trophy Cup, in which he and Larson had a tremendous duel for the win. The former Golden State 410 Series champion picked up a total of 15 wins on the West Coast last year. Last season’s Golden State 410 Sprint Car Series champion Kyle Larson will be at the race competing for Finley Farms Racing. The 18-year-old had a great year in 2010, becoming the youngest Golden State 410 champion ever and scoring nine overall wins on the year, including the annual Cotton Classic in October at Hanford. Tarlton is fresh off a year that saw him claim his second consecutive Taco Bravo Ocean Sprints championship, winning four main events along the way. The driver of the Corporate America Lending No. 21 mount also raced to a pair of wins with the Golden State 410 Series, during what was one of the best seasons of his career.
2010 ASCS Points Runner-Up Brady Bacon in Action (Image Credit: BradyBaconRacing.com)
Reigning ASCS National Rookie of the Year Kyle Hirst is also set to be on hand February 9, as he makes his maiden voyage aboard the Smitty Boys Racing No. 14s sprinter. Hitting the road with ASCS last season the 23-year-old finished eighth in the series standings and has come home for 2010 driving for Steve Smith, who won the Civil War Series owner title last year. Other California drivers expected to be on hand include three-time USAC Silver Crown champion Bud Kaeding of Campbell, five-time and defending California Sprint Car Civil War Series champion Andy Forsberg of Auburn, Placerville’s Andy Gregg, Sacramento’s Willie Croft, Princeton’s Mason Moore, Visalia’s Steven Tiner and more.
Jason Johnson will open up his title defense behind the wheel of the Jason Johnson Racing No. 41 machine. The now two-time ASCS National champion raced to five wins with the series last season and also made an appearance at the Thunderbowl Raceway in October, finishing fourth in the standings at Trophy Cup. After finishing runner up in the Lucas Oil ASCS National points last year Brady Bacon will look to put his name towards the front of the championship chase in 2011 aboard the Tel-Star Communications No. 99 mount. Like Johnson, the youngster also competed at last October’s Trophy Cup, but finished one spot short of making Saturday’s feature. Shane Stewart will be searching to take back the Lucas Oil ASCS National crown after finishing third in the standings last year, while driving the California based Paul Silva Motorsports No. 57 entry. The 2009 ASCS National titlist has had success in the past at Thunderbowl Raceway and will hope for more of the same on February 9. Other Lucas Oil ASCS National contenders expected to be in action will include Jack Dover, Tim Crawley, Tony Bruce Jr., Zach Chappell, Gary Wright, Johnny Herrera, Jeff Swindell, Danny Wood, Dustin Morgan and others.
After competing at the Thunderbowl the Lucas Oil ASCS National Sprint Cars will then head right down the road to Giant Chevrolet Kings Speedway in Hanford for an event on Saturday February 12. For more info on this historic race fans can check out www.thunderbowlraceway.com.