By Gary Thomas
Watsonville, CA – July 7, 2014…One of the major cornerstones of the season for the Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo is set to go green this Friday night at Ocean Speedway, when the fourth annual Howard Kaeding Classic weekend fires-off. Friday’s show will also be the first of two much anticipated Ocean Sprints vs Civil War Series events at the track this season, with the other being the Johnny Key Classic in August.
Special events on tap during the weekend will include a Thursday night car show & party on July 10 at the High Five Pizza location at the Silver Creek Sportsplex off Hellyer Road in San Jose from 5pm-9pm. Various drivers, race cars & hot rods will be on hand at the get together, for what will be the official kick-off of the Howard Kaeding Classic weekend. For all the racers coming if you happen to have any kids shirts you’d like to donate for a raffle please bring them with you! Load in time for teams bringing cars is between 2pm and 4pm.
There will be a bbq chicken & rib dinner on Thursday from 6pm-8pm for donation, with proceeds going to the Silver Creek Sports Plex Foundation, which aims to ensure that every child, regardless of financial ability, is able to participate in local amateur athletic training and competition. Please come out and enjoy a fun night with some great food, all put on for a great cause. Hive Five at the Plex is located at 800 Embedded Way in San Jose, CA 95138.
A pit area packed full of Winged 360 Sprint Cars will be presented on Friday night, in what is sure to be one of the stoutest fields we see all season in Northern California. Fremont’s Shane Golobic will resume his march towards a second Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo title and goes into Friday maintaining a 25-point advantage in the standings. The 2012 champ has yet to win a feature at Ocean Speedway this season, although he did score a Civil War Series triumph at the Silver Dollar Speedway over Memorial Day weekend. Golobic also picked up a victory at Placerville Speedway last Friday night.
Lemoore’s Carson Macedo has been a consistency machine this season, having finished among the top-five in all six Ocean Sprints events this year. The youngster sits second in points and will be gunning for his first win of the season on Friday, as he searches to close the gap between himself and Golobic. Fresh off his first victory of the season during the last event defending Ocean Sprints champ Brad Furr has moved to third in the standings. Furr held off a determined Tommy Tarlton to pick up the win on June 13.
Hanford’s Mitchell Faccinto ranks fourth in the standings going into Friday and is just eight-markers back of Furr. Completing the top-five in the Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo standings is Watsonville’s Justin Sanders. Rounding out the top-10 are Laton’s Heath Duinkerken, who picked up a career best Ocean Sprints finish of third on June 13, Gilroy’s Kurt Nelson, Salinas’ Jeremy Chisum, Fresno’s Koen Shaw and Salinas’ Jason Chisum.
Following last Saturday’s Civil War presented by Flowmaster event in Petaluma, three-time & defending series champion Sean Becker has catapulted himself atop the point standings going into Friday’s Howard Kaeding Classic opener. The Roseville, CA driver will be looking for his first win of the season with Civil War on Friday and is currently locked in a tight duel with Ocean Sprints point leader Shane Golobic. Last week saw issues knock Golobic out of the main event in Petaluma and resulted in his Civil War point lead taken away.
Golobic, who drives the very same Keith Day Trucking No. 22 Sprinter in Civil War competition as he does with the Ocean Sprints, will go into Friday sitting eight points behind Becker for the Civil War lead. Seven-time Civil War Sprint Car Series presented by Flowmaster champion Andy Forsberg of Auburn ranks third in the points, with Watsonville’s Justin Sanders fourth and Wilton’s Matt Petersen in fifth. Rounding out the top-10 in Civil War points going into Friday’s Howard Kaeding Classic opener are Penngrove’s Alissa Geving, Sacramento’s Herman Klein, Gilroy’s Kurt Nelson, Fresno’s Koen Shaw and Grass Valley’s Carl Droivold.
Chico’s Mason Moore picked up the Civil War Series victory last Saturday in Petaluma and by doing so, became the first driver to lock his way into the Johnny Key Classic, which will be held at the Ocean Speedway on Saturday August 23. The next qualifying race for the event will occur at Ocean Speedway on Friday July 25.
Also expected to tackle the Ocean Speedway on Friday night will include three-time winner this year with the Ocean Sprints Brent Kaeding of Campbell, two-time Ocean Sprints champ Tommy Tarlton of Easton, May 30 winner Jonathan Allard from Chico, May 3 victor Steven Tiner of Visalia, King of the West Series point leader Kyle Hirst of Chico, Campbell’s Bud Kaeding, Sacramento’s Willie Croft, Hanford’s DJ Netto, Placerville’s Andy Gregg, Colfax’ Colby Wiesz, Grass Valley’s Jason Statler, Fresno’s Cory Eliason & Craig Stidham, Roseville’s Colby Copeland, Tulare’s Dylan Black, San Francisco’s Nick Rescino Jr., Sacramento’s Justyn Cox, Corralitos’ Jerry Bonnema, Pleasanton’s Nathan Washam and more.
Following Friday nights races High Five Pizza will also be putting on a post-race party at the track, along with a luncheon on Saturday afternoon as well, which will kick-off the final night’s action featuring the King of the West 410 Sprint Car Series. Both events will be held to support the Northern Auto Racing Club Benevolent Fund. There will also be a 50/50 raffle and a silent auction.
The HK Classic luncheon catered by High Five Pizza on Saturday July 12 at the track will feature a tasty lunch for a $20 donation to the benevolent fund. Howard, Brent & Bud Kaeding will all be available for photos and autographs at the luncheon. Easy access will be available to enter from the grandstands for fans. All race teams & fans are invited to come enjoy a great lunch prepared by Myles & the crew at Catering by 5.
Howard Kaeding was a multiple-time California state super-modified champion, a four-time Johnny Key Classic winner and once captured a record 17-straight races at the San Jose Speedway. The driver known as the “Campbell Comet” claimed over 300 main event victories in his career and even raced into his 60′s, before retiring in the 1990′s. The “HK Classic” has been a great weekend of re-living memories from the past and will certainly be so once again in 2014.
The front gate at the Ocean Speedway will open at 4:30pm this Friday night July 11 with hot laps at 5:15pm, qualifying around 6pm and racing to follow. All seating will be general admission with adult tickets costing $20, children 6-12 $15 and kids five and under free. Tickets for Friday night can be pre-purchased at http://www.eventbrite.com/e/4th-annual-howard-kaeding-classic-night-1-taco-bravo-360-vs-civil-war-360-tickets-12073585419?aff=eorg
The Ocean Speedway is located on the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds in Watsonville, California with the physical address being 2601 East Lake Ave, Watsonville, CA 95076.
Ocean Speedway & the Ocean Sprints would like to thank Taco Bravo, High Five Pizza, Nobel Construction, Ray Scheidt’s Electric, Beer Optics, B Scadden Designs, Hoosier Tires West and Kaeding Performance for their support.
Upcoming Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo events at Ocean Speedway
Friday July 11 Howard Kaeding Classic Opener (Ocean Sprints vs Civil War Series)
Friday July 18
Friday July 25 (Johnny Key Qualifying Race Number two)