By Gary Thomas
Watsonville, CA – June 15, 2014…Stockton, CA’s Brad Furr withstood an intense late-race challenge from Easton’s Tommy Tarlton to scoop up his first win of the 2014 season with the Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo on Friday night at the Ocean Speedway.
Furr officially led the entire distance, but had lost the lead going down the back stretch on what looked to be the final lap to Tarlton. Just as fans came to their feet however, a spun car in the middle of turn four caused the yellow lights to flash on, creating a green-white-checkered restart.
The former World of Outlaws regular then proceeded to hit his marks over the final couple laps and take the checkered by 0.651 seconds for victory aboard the Price Rite Restaurant Equipment/ Brad Furr Racing No. 2 machine. “It feels great to finally get into victory lane this season,” said Furr. “That was some great racing with Tommy right there and I’m glad the luck was on our side tonight. I really have to thank my whole team for all the support they give me each week.”
Furr also began the night by setting the Ray Scheidts Electric Fast Time Award and then jumped into the lead of the feature after drawing the number one envelope. Laton’s Heath Duinkerken would put together a career night with the Ocean Sprints and followed Furr in second over the early stages of the race. The defending champ though set a blistering pace and got through traffic with precision. Fremont’s Shane Golobic then made his presence known and charged into second on lap 10.
With great individual battles taking place throughout the field, Golobic proceeded to cut down a big advantage that Furr had held and looked to make it a battle for the lead.
Just as that got set to take place however; the yellow flag flew on lap 18 for a spun car in turn four. When going back green Furr jumped out into the top-spot and Golobic followed right along in second. With 21-laps down Golobic then attempted to slide underneath Furr for the lead, but couldn’t pull it off and lost just enough momentum, which allowed Tarlton the chance to pull off a power slider through turns one and two for second. Lap 23 then saw Golobic spin off the cushion while running third to bring out a yellow.
The always hard charging Tarlton then came after Furr following the restart and with the white flag in the air the two-time Ocean Sprints champ was all over his rear bumper. As the pair raced off turn two Tarlton got the run he needed and zoomed into the lead, making what appeared to be the winning pass. As soon as that was taking place, Anthony Simone was sitting backwards in the middle of turn four, leaving officials no choice but to throw the yellow flag. On the restart Tarlton stayed close, but Furr drove a flawless two-laps and crossed the stripe for season win number one.
Despite being disappointed on the outcome Tarlton stayed positive on the front stretch after finishing runner up in the Elite Landscape Construction/ Tarlton & Son Inc. No. 21 Sprinter. “We obviously wanted to win that one, but we just caught a bad break. You never know what’s going to happen in that situation. I have to thank my dad and my whole team for giving me a great race car to drive. We’ve been having some personal issues with my wife as everyone knows, but she’s getting better and that’s the biggest thing. We love coming out here to Ocean Speedway and look forward to next Friday.”
Duinkerken brought home a career best Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo finish of third after battling tooth & nail with Bud Kaeding over the closing laps. “This is pretty cool to get up here on the podium tonight and I feel like we’re getting better all the time,” said the driver of the Duinkerken Farms/ BHK Nut No. 79 mount. “This is the first season we’ve really committed to running a Sprint Car this often, so to race with veterans like Bud Kaeding is a huge confidence builder. It’s all about lap time and that’s what we’re getting out here with the Ocean Sprints. My guys gave me a great car and I can’t thank them enough.”
Bud Kaeding ended up fourth at the finish at the helm of the Williams Motorsports Zero, with Lemoore’s Carson Macedo earning the High Five Pizza Hard Charger Award coming from 13th to fifth in the WFO Apparel No. 21x Sprinter. Golobic made a nice recovery to finish sixth, with Watsonville’s Justin Sanders in seventh, Tulare’s Dillon Black in eighth, Hanford’s Collin Markle ninth and Gilroy’s Kurt Nelson completing the top-10. Nick Ringo Jr. will go home with the Beer Optics hard luck award for the night.
The three ten-lap heat races were picked off by Shane Golobic, Heath Duinkerken and Collin Markle. As noted Brad Furr started off the night by setting the Ray Scheidts Electric Fast Time Award. Full results can be seen at www.oceanspeedway.com and simply clicking on the results tab.
A-main finish: 1. 2 Brad Furr, 2. 21 Tommy Tarlton, 3. 79 Heath Duinkerken, 4. 0 Bud Kaeding, 5. 21x Carson Macedo, 6. 22 Shane Golobic, 7. 17 Justin Sanders, 8. 21b Dillon Black, 9. 5 Collin Markle, 10. 72w Kurt Nelson, 11. 10 Anthony Simone, 12. 88 Koen Shaw, 13. 8 Jeremy Chisum, 14. 4 Burt Foland Jr, 15. 3t Nicholas Ringo, 16. 25z Jason Chisum, 17. 58 Jerry Bonnema, 18. 99 Wayne Katen, 19. 37 Mitchell Faccinto, 20. 9j Dustin Golobic, 21. 7 Nick Ringo Jr, 22. 39n Nathan Washam
The Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo will return to action on Friday July 11 to kick-off the Howard Kaeding Classic weekend at Ocean Speedway. The night will also be the first of two Ocean Sprints vs Civil War Sprint Car Series presented by Flowmaster events this season at the track. A large car count is expected for what will open a can’t miss weekend of racing at the Ocean Speedway.
Photo courtesy Fast 4 Media.