By Gary Thomas
Alger, Washington – June 20, 2011…The Golden State King of the West Sprint Car Series would like to give congratulations to Chico’s Jonathan Allard and San Jose’s Tim Kaeding for finishing first and second at the 40th annual Jim Raper Memorial Dirt Cup this past weekend.
The prestigious event at the Skagit Speedway paid $40,000-to-win and saw Allard lead all 40-laps on Saturday night, holding off Oklahoma's Shane Stewart and then a late-race challenge from KWS point leader T. Kaeding.
The two-time Golden State 410 champion never faltered and crossed the checkered flag to score his third career Dirt Cup victory aboard the Morrie & Katie Williams No. 0 sprint car. Allard came into the night second in points and took full advantage of his front row starting spot to claim the huge payday.
"It's unbelievable to win another Dirt Cup,” said Allard. “I want to thank my car owners Katie and Morrie Williams, my whole team Ashley and Shawn and all the guys, as well as Chris, Paul, Drake and everyone that helps us out. They put a lot of effort in especially over the last month we've had."
T. Kaeding had a solid weekend and ended up with yet another runner up finish at the Dirt Cup. The 2002 Golden State 410 champion went into the final night ranking fourth in points and made a late charge to try and get by Allard. After passing Shane Stewart for second “TK” closed in quickly on “JA”, but ran out of time and had to settle for second in the Roth Motorsports No. 83.
“We seem to be a day late and dollar short here,” commented Kaeding following the race. “Congratulations to Jonathan Allard though because he did a great job tonight. We had a good car as well so I really have to thank “Bonzai” and all my guys for making that possible. We got into second there, but just ran out of laps at the end.”
Sacramento’s Willie Croft ended the 40-lap feature in the seventh position to cap a good Dirt Cup for the driver of the Christian Stover Foundation No. 29 machine. The veteran wheel-man currently rounds out the top-five in the Golden State King of the West Sprint Car Series standings and continued his strong season to date.
Campbell’s Brent Kaeding transferred through the b-main and raced his way up to ninth in the 40-lapper aboard the Al’s Roofing Supply No. 69 mount. The National Sprint Car Hall of Fame member sits third in the KWS standings, as the tour gets set for an event paying honor to his also legendary father on 4th of July weekend.
Grass Valley’s Jason Statler also transferred through the b-main, but was caught in a wreck during the A-main and finished the contest in 18th at the helm of his DF Rios Motorsports No. 00 sprinter. Other California entrants in the main event included drivers that also fought through issues including 17th place finisher Cory Eliason, 20th place Tommy Tarlton and 21st place Peter Murphy.
The Golden State King of the West 410 Sprint Car Series will now get set for another weekend off, before returning to action with the inaugural Howard Kaeding Classic at the Ocean Speedway on Friday & Saturday July 1 & 2. The event at the Watsonville based quarter-mile bullring is expected to be a can’t miss night of racing, as the powerful 410’s hit the clay for back to back evening’s of competition.
Adult tickets will cost $20 each night, kids 6-12 will be $15, seniors 65 and older with id will be $18 and kids 5 and under will be free. A family pack featuring two adults and two children will be available for $55. More info can be found by calling (831) 662-9466 or by visiting http://www.oceanspeedway.com
The Howard Kaeding Classic will be the 10th and 11th point races of the season for the Golden State King of the West Sprint Car Series and current point leader Tim Kaeding will look to back up his win at the track from April 23. That night saw him pass father Brent for the lead of the race and hold off a fast-moving Justin Sanders for the victory. Allard finished third with Brent Kaeding 4th and Andy Gregg 5th.
Winners so far this season with KWS include Tim Kaeding on three separate occasions, Jonathan Allard twice, along with single victories by Andy Gregg, Willie Croft, Peter Murphy and Tommy Tarlton. A pack of hungry drivers will also be looking for their first win of the year at the HK Classic including Evan Suggs, Brent Kaeding, Jason Statler, Bobby McMahan and many more.
For more info on the Golden State King of the West Sprint Car Series log onto http://www.kwssprints.com or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.