Hanford - The wait is over. Racing returns to Keller Auto Speedway this Saturday night with an exciting four division lineup that will include the King Of Thunder Winged 360 Sprint Cars, IMCA RaceSaver 305 Sprint Cars, IMCA Stock Cars and Central Valley Mini Stocks. It will also be Back To School night at the races where kids get in free.
The nearly two month break since the last race has not meant that track officials are sitting around and doing nothing. Improvements continue to be made to the facility. The old back straightaway scoreboard and guardrail have been removed. It's believed that this will help make a safer racing surface. However, there will be a new scoreboard at the speedway, which will be positioned in the infield.
The King Of Thunder Winged 360 Sprint Car Series has events at both Hanford and Tulare. We are 11 races into the series, and Mitchell Faccinto currently leads the battle by just four points ahead of DJ Netto. Faccinto is a three-time winner, while Netto has picked up a pair of victories. Reigning IMCA RaceSaver Sprint Car champion Grant Duinkerken and Danny Faria Jr are dead locked for third, 22 points out of the lead, while Watsonville point leader Bud Kaeding is fifth. We will likely be seeing all five of these competitors for an exciting show this Saturday night. Others to watch for include Steven Kent, Landon Hurst and one-time winners Scott Parker and Tucker Worth.
The IMCA 305 RaceSaver Sprint Cars have had four events in Hanford, and two of them have been won by Brooklyn Holland. Holland finds herself leading a close four-car battle for the championship. Grant Champlin is the only driver with all four finishes in the Top 5, and he trails Holland by just two points. Michael Pombo is seven tallies behind, while one-time winner Kyle Rasmussen is eight points back. It's a wide open battle between these four competitors for track championship honors. Champlin, meanwhile, leads Pombo by four points in the State championship battle. Holland is only 14 points back in that race. Some of the other stars to watch for this Saturday include Brandon Emmett, Lance Jackson, Mauro Simone, Rob Solomon and Ryan Delisle
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The IMCA Stock Car battle is equally close. With two victories to his credit, Chad Johnson leads Larry Thompson by just one point. Thompson is the only driver with four Top 5 finishes this year at Hanford. Cody Johnson is only three points out the lead, Troy Patee is six points back and reigning champion Brock Hamilton is trailing by just eight points. Chad Johnson leads Cody Johnson by nine points in the State championship race with Thompson 12 points back in third. Hanford is where the IMCA Stock Car effort in California started, and other notables to watch for this week include Renn Bane, Rod Bane, Tanner Lorenzo, Eric Hamilton and Ron Hurt.
With support from the House Of JuJu Central Valley Mini Stocks, the track has been over run with more than 20 competitors in each of the three previous events. CVMS point leader Dan Myrick leads Gene Glover by five points at Hanford and Jason Cook by 10. Cook is a two-time winner, while Myrick has one Hanford victory to his credit. The CVMS has a $5,000 championship point fund thanks to House Of JuJu of Clovis and Morro Bay. Myrick leads that race by 61 points ahead of Darren Wilson as Clint Massey, Jeff Durant and Glover make up the balance of the Top 5. All of those drivers are anticipated for this race, and other Mini Stock stars to watch for this week include Ryan Blank, Randy Brown Jr, Brent Myrick and 2017 CVMS champion Danny Myrick.
Saturday night promises to be an exciting show from start to finish, and kids get to watch all of the excitement for free. For further information, go to www.racekingsspeedway.com.