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On a night when many hearts were in Eldora with the hopes for their heroes, the SCRA show went on like normal at The PAS, and boy was it a good one. With 34 cars in the house, the air was electric and the crowd appreciative of a great night of racing. Everybody stepped up to see who could prevail with several of our hero’s off looking for the ultimate cashola win. The biggest news at home was that the perennial bridesmaid, Steve Ostling, finally won his 8th SCRA victory, and first of the year, with a dedicated night of action on the track.

Mrs Wags pics are here. Also some of mine Click here.

SteveO, driving the Stress Relief Engineering, Feese Solid Surface Spec., Angell & Giroux, # 29 “Okie Drake”, returned to the SCRA wars after a few weeks off when he broke the motor big time their last time out. Things looked pretty good early as he was 3rd quick, and it turned out that was the only thing he didn’t win all night. He won his heat on a wild slide job in front of Mark Nation, then won the JE Pistons Passing Masters Dash and started on the pole of the 30 lap main. He told the cheering crowd, after his dash win, he would rather be starting third, but he would just be starting closer to his goal now. He wished the Fischer boys Mom, a happy birthday and went out and won $2500 for them all.

Steve had his hands full of Mike’s as Mike Kirby and Mike Spencer both passed him during the feature, but remember, he who is leading when the checkers comes out is the winner, and the “Mexican National Champion “ was first across the line this time. Steve battled hard and actually lost the lead on the last lap to Tony Jones, but came back to close the door on Jones for his big win.

Our podium man, Tony “Cowboy” Jones, put on his own show this week and almost had his first win of the season. Tony started 12th in the main in the Ferreira Dairy, Standard Feeding, VGI Graphics, # 2 Maxim. The Cowboy won his heat, but didn’t qualify for the dash and had to work hard to get up front in the main. He took the high road with his spurs on as usual and worked his way into 2nd late in the race. He just kept reeling in the leader and on the white flag lap finally made the pass on him. Unfortunately, he couldn’t get the 4th turn cushion to launch him quick enough to protect that slim lead and he finished 2nd behind SteveO. With this kind of action, and the new car working fine, he should do very well in the big races coming up.

Mike English came out of a “time out” to step in the Mark Alexander “rent a ride” and grab third this week. Mike has been addressing business more than racing recently and his split with the Jory team was nothing personal, but it allows him to control the amount of time he spends racing, which is less and less as he builds his business. This day he worked until noon and was still able to come out and drive and get a podium finish. Mike was 4th quick in the Alexander Trucking, Ray’s Trucking, Larry Murakami Cont., # 4 Stinger. He won the semi to start 9th in the main. Mike did a good job getting to third and now we won’t know when he will be back to driving because he says no more road trips this season. The car will be driven by Mike Kirby at Manzy as Mike relaxes until next time.

Mike Kirby’s year has not been one of his best from the weekly grind perspective, but he has done very well when he shows up and the car under him finishes the race. Not having his own program for the first time in many years, he has driven for several car owners. He won one SCRA race in the Alexander car and has won 2 VRA races in Buzz Shoemaker’s car, but he still hasn’t settled in one car for the season, and it’s almost over. On the other side of the coin so to speak, the Hasebe # 2H car has come South on many occasions to run with SCRA with mixed results. Rickie Gaunt gave it a run a few years ago, then Greg DeCaries tried it on two years ago and a few others have been in the seat South of the NARC/SCRA line. Mike Hasebe and his two sons, Randy and Steve, have fielded their entry for many top wing drivers, like Steve Kent and Paul MacMahan to name two, over the years under the Hanford Radiator banner in a car that was yellow in color and a winner. Even though they have found fun in the Southland running wingless, they have never won a race down here. Mike Hasebe retired and sold the business last year and turned over the race car to the boys and they have run mainly wing races nearer the homebase of Hanford since. When they tried to get Kirby to drive on several occasions, he was unavailable, but this week they got together.

The yellow color so familiar is gone, but the car is still strong in white. Mike Kirby Immediately liked it when he jumped in and got 10th quick, then came back to get 2nd in his heat and 4th in the dash. In the feature he jumped into the mix and took the lead on lap six and begin to pull away from the Ostling/Spencer battle. When he slowed going into turn three on lap 24, it looked like curtains for the leader. The crew immediately found a bolt had come out of the Jacobs ladder and they repaired it quickly and sent him back to the back of the pack. In seven laps he was driving like a madman, or the car was way fast. He was in 4th at the end, but was clearly faster than those in front of him and dearly wanted a few more laps. A great run, but he will drive the Alexander # 4 car in Phoenix next week and we will see if he has a chance to get back in the Hasebe car for the Oval Nationals. I think smiles were all around that pit at night’s end!

Mike Spencer was his usual fast self this week, but he did something while leading that we haven’t seen before. No, he has led before but never crashed in a race like this. He battled hard for the lead with Ostling, after Kirby went to the back, and appeared to have things in hand when he got over the cushion enough to be sucked into the wall and get upside down. A very rare thing for the young driver, and it came with his first win in his sights. I know no one feels worse than he does, but this young man is starting to come on strong and will get that first win very soon.

Charles Davis Jr made a trip to the PAS for $100 this week. That’s right, all the way across the desert to set fast time and then, during normal maintenance on the car for the heat, they discovered water in the oil. That’s not supposed to happen and now a cracked block will have to be sorted out when he gets home. Tough break for the traveler who would have loved to be racing in Eldora.

Marc Hart finished 20th this week, but that is not the whole story. He was 7th quick on the night, 2nd in his heat and 2nd in the dash to start on the front row. He did very well until he and another car got together and he had to restart at the back. Then two cars got stopped in front of him, and he had nowhere to go, thus he was done for the night. He was fast and racy until he loaded it up. He looked focused and was moving well all night.

Look out for that Venard kid, Brian Venard, now that he's on the fast track in dad's new # 47 car. He was 9th in qualifying, 2nd in his heat and 6th in the dash before the main. He was a rocket early in the main and ended up 10th for a great ride on the night. He was so hooked up he had a three wheeler coming out of the 2nd turn before he slowed it down a little. Look out next time as the Ellis car works and the RC Performance Chevy runs fast.

Jason York came down from NARCVille to try wingless again. He came last year and was getting the hang of it OK then. This time he was 4th in his heat and doing well in the main until someone helped him flip over right after Spencer tagged the wall. He somehow managed 12th with that boo boo and looked pretty good for a wing runner. He made one interesting comment about how he was run into from behind a lot more than in his normal wing stuff and thought that was strange? He and his cute wife Julie, who was his main crewman working on the car with him all night, are coming back in two weeks. They will be leaving the hauler at a friends place nearby and renting a car to go home to Chico in.

The Legends of Ascot event is sold out! For those who thought they could wait to make that decision to go, it’s too late, there will be no walkup business because they simply have no more room. Now that 600 people have paid their money to enjoy what may be the best “reunion” possible, it looks like this might grow in the years to come. Don Weaver and Belita Michnowicz have put a lot of work in to making this happen. Luckily, Terry and I will be involved, so we won’t miss a thing. The total attendance confirmed doubled Weaver’s expectations and it should be fun for all attending. You can read and see all about it as Mrs Wags will bring her camera view to you on Wags Web. You can still see all the dignitaries around the racetrack after the spectator gates open and they enjoy a night of great racing. Maybe Parnelli Jones will come sit with you? NOT!

My comments on the Mopar million are pretty much from reading what TJ and the Eldora coverage provided. Thanks to Earl Baltes for doing it and offering the biggest sprint car purse of all time, but wouldn’t it be nice if there were a 2nd annual? Nevertheless, in my mind it was a slam dunk for Jac Haudenschild from the third row, but J J Yeley not getting 2nd really surprised me. The format put a few in the main that were very lucky, and kept out a few that were notably more worthy. The format of heat transfers was simple, but demanding, as the automatic invite to the main was based on being the top two of fifteen that started it. That was an impossible task for some, but they had to have some organization decisions.

Super Rickie Gaunt didn’t win, but he made $16,500 in a Bill Rose back-up car on a great ride for our best from the SCRA west after J J’s good job. Rickie still didn’t beat the likeable Rose who got $25,000 for his work. The Gasman, Richard Griffin made the main and was running strong. I have to hand it to Brad Noffsinger as he made the main in Billy Wilkerson’s car. Troy Rutherford passed 32 cars and Troy Cline 28 as both were passing masters as they moved up two features from where they stared. Unfortunately neither made the main. Cory Kruseman and Damion Gardner didn’t have any luck, yet I am sure both impressed. There was a lot of luck in this thing. Haud was lucky for getting to start near the front at a place where he has won big races before. You just knew he would wear it or win it! Dickie Gaines was lucky to get a ride in one of the Hoffman rockets. All those who got to witness first hand what might be the last edition of a great $print car race, you were lucky. Tracy Hines gets the tip of my hat after setting fast time and unfortunately crashing in his heat, then getting to start 21st in the main and coming up to 8th for the best passing job. J J better look out!

The VRA had their last race at home before the 13th annual Wagsdash event coming there on October 18th. As usual, I invite two of their club to participate in our race and the winner this week was Will “the Thrill” Perkins and the hard charger Chris Tramel. Congratulations as they will be added to the list that now includes: Tom Wilhelm, Trevor Brilman, AJ Reyer, Bob Ferro, Brian Venard, Lance Gremett, Mel Murphy, Brian Stanfill, Dan Hillberg, Steve Venard, Jimmy Crawford, Seth Wilson, Tony Everhart, J Hicks and Cal Smith.

There are lots of things happening as we prepare for the annual low buck racers race. The Wagsdash event T-shirt is about to go to press, so if you want your name or business on it, now’s the time to speak up. There are $200, $300 and $500 spots still available and all the money helps build the purse. It will be a very wild shirt, so get on it!

Look for us at Manzy, but we won’t set-up a booth for the quilt like we have in past years. I will have some quilt tickets with my clipboard, so if you want any, come see me and get your big chances. Remember the Legends of Ascot event on October 4th at the PAS on a night that will showcase another double header, but this time all sprint cars! The VRA will also be running in addition to the regular SCRA show. Come check it out!

A FEATURE (30 Laps)
1. Steve Ostling. 2. Tony Jones. 3. Mike English. 4. Mike Kirby. 5. Adam Mitchell. 6. Jordan Hermansader. 7. Alan Ballard, 8, Greg Bragg, 9. Josh Ford. 10. Brian Venard, 11. Bobby Cody. 12. Jason York. 13. Rick Becker. 14. Mark Nation. 15. Dan Hillberg. 16. Alex Harris. 17. Mike Spencer. 18. Verne Sweeney, 19. Seth Wilson. 20. Marc Hart. 21. Ronnie Clark, 22. Rip Williams, Laps Led: Ostling 1-5, Kirby 6-23, Spencer 24, Ostling 25-30

SCRA DRIVER STANDINGS as of September 20
1. Richard Griffin 1806, 2. Troy Rutherford 1704, 3. Damion Gardner 1676, 4. Rip Williams 1556, 5. Mike Spencer 1172, 6. Steve Ostling 1044, 7. Rickie Gaunt 944, 8. Mike English 904, 9. Tony Jones 899, 10. Josh Ford 30 884, 11. Cory Kruseman 868, 12. Adam Mitchell 775, 13. Levi Jones 750, 14. Alan Ballard 719, 15. J.J. Yeley 552, 16. Verne Sweeney 546, 17. Seth Wilson 536, 18. Jimmy Crawford 503, 19. Charles Davis, Jr 497, 20. Bryan Stanfill 462.

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