Vindhurst And Nordell Take Track Championships At Lucas Oil I 10 Speedway
BY DAVE GRAYSON
The Lucas Oil I 10 Speedway, the quarter mile paved oval located at the Colorado River Fairgrounds in Blythe-California, closed their 2011-2012 Winter Blast Racing Series, June 9th, with a spectacular evening of racing in front of a capacity crowd who enjoyed action from the speedway's street stock and factory stock divisions along with special appearances by the Lucas Oil Modified Racing Series and the ASA Truck Series. The special evening was presented by the local Subway Restaurant and America's Best Value Inn.
Blythe driver Chris Vindhurst arrived at the speedway primed and ready to claim his first street stock track championship. It was a case of mission accomplished after he won his fourth feature of the season as well as his third win in a row. Vindhurst passed Arizona driver Matt Rice on lap six and made very fast work of running out the remaining laps to the checkers. Rick Boone, Rice, John Martinez and Jon Draughn followed him under the checkers to complete the top five.
After the race the very happy track champion said "tonight we had a real good run, our car was really on point. Mike Sutterfield helped me with the set up as he has all season long. He's been a tremendous asset to our team. We were able to win the last three races in a row, we really got hot at the last of the season and the hard work all came together this year with a championship."
Vindhurst made it a point to say thank you to a list of loyal supporters of his racing effort. "I could not have done this without my sponsors Bulldog Emergency Auto Repair, Brook and Bree Eckerd, Ben and Beckie along with the whole Sutterfield family as well as my family," he said.
Regarding the next winter season at the Lucas Oil I 10 Speedway, Vindhurst said he would most definitely be returning to the street stock series and hinted that, with the help of additional sponsors, he just might be planning some additional racing activity.
The fan favorite factory stocks also resolved their championship as well on this night. In their main event feature Bryant Ray paced the field for the first two circuits before John Lowrence made a race winning move by passing the leader on the outside line coming off of turn four. Lowrence then made very quick work of running out the laps for the win. Ethan Miller, Dustin Hightower, Tom Nordell and Bryant Ray completed the top five.
While Lowrence won the battle with his first feature win of the season, it was Tom Nordell who won the war. The local driver's fourth place finish allowed him to take the division championship by a mere three points over Ethan Miller.
"It took six years for me to get to this championship," Nordell said adding "the last two seasons we missed this title by two points, three points. We finally made it due to the help of Ethan Miller who helped build the car and set it up. I also want to thank Tom Miller from Precision Pumps and I want to thank everybody who helped, I'm so excited. I also want to thank you fans who come out here to support us."
Speedway promoter Greg Scheidecker congratulated his local division champions. Commenting on Chris Vindhurst's street stock title he said " anytime a local driver becomes the local hero, that's a good thing." Regarding Tom Nordell's championship, Scheidecker said "the man has really paid his dues and finally it all clicked. He quit tearing up race cars and decided that if you finish you're going to get a much better result."
The Lucas Oil Modified Racing Series, presented by 1 800 Loan Mart, presented the fans with the CANIDAE All Natural Pet Food 75. When the 75th lap had been counted, Escondido-California's Austin Barnes passed Lake Havasu City-Arizona's Chris Gerchman, with five laps remaining, to take his third series win of the season in an exciting event that had the fans on their feet. Jim Mardis, Matt Hicks and David Lord completed the top five.
The 75 lap feature by the ASA Truck Series started out on a tough note when the trucks of Louie Pagano and Colin Dickinson collided before the first lap of the race was complete. Pagano slammed hard into the wall while Dickinson's truck went on its side and did a multiple barrel roll through turns three and four. Neither driver was injured despite the severity of the accident.
In the race itself, El Cajon-California's Taylor Miinch passed Jeff Williams' Ford Truck on lap 43 to claim his third series win of the season. Jeremiah Wagner, Jason Black, Darcy Shunk and Jeff Bischofberger completed the top five.
After the night was over, Greg Scheidecker reflected on his tenth anniversary racing season and said "it feels good that, after ten years, we have made a difference that has made participants want to race here. We had a very good show here tonight in front of the best racing fans you'd ever want to see. Our car count was a little bit down tonight, but you expect that on the final night of a long racing season. Still, we had over 80 cars in our pit area tonight. There are tracks all over the country who wish they had 80 cars on any given Saturday night."
The Lucas Oil I 10 Speedway management and staff will finally get some well deserved vacation time. After that, it will be time to return to work to get ready for the 2012-2013 edition of the Winter Blast Series. It all starts again on September 29th.