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Mike Slightom Wins First Main of His Career at Chico
By Troy Hennig, SDS Media Relations
Photo by Steven Cox [sprintcarphotos.com]
CHICO, CA (6-22-12) - It might of taken seven years but for street stock driver Mike Slightom, it was all worth the wait. "I feel like I am living in a dream," said Slightom who won his first street stock main event after seven years of trying. "I have to thank my wife for letting me spend all this money on racing, and my son is here who helps me work on the car," said Slightom. "I just can't believe I finally was able to win after seven years of trying." Other winners during point race #7 included Marysville drivers Randy and Ryan McDaniel and Orland's Tony Richards.
In the street stock main event Shawn Smith jumped out to the early lead. The 14-car starting field was set to go 20 laps. Smith led the first two laps before Jake Vantol took the lead. Vantol had won the previous street stock main event and was out front cruising to what looked to be another win. However, on lap 16, we noticed that one of his tires where going flat. Vantol had built up a big enough lead and it seemed he was going to be able and limp around for the win. He took the white flag and had just one more lap to go when the race completely changed. Behind Vantol, Nathan Mayo spun around and so did Kevin Ward. Richard Workman came around with no where to go and drilled Ward in the driver side. The track was pretty much blocked and the caution had to come out. The red flag was then displayed as Ward was trapped in his car and needed some medical assistance. During the red flag, Vantol made the decision to go to the pits and change the flat tire. This gave the lead to Mike Slightom. When the race resumed Slightom held off hard charging Bill Patterson for the win. Gary Newman finished third while Bill Hall III was fourth. Vantol salvaged his night to return to the track and finish fifth.
Only seven dirt modifieds showed up for the nights racing action, but the seven that were here put on an amazing. Hot shoe Ryan McDaniel led the first few laps of the highly entertaining main event. Nick DeCarlo and Randy McDaniel provided some of the best short track racing that we have seen at Chico. All three of these drivers raced so hard and without contact for the entire 20 lap race. It is a testament to the skill level of these drivers and a well prepared track that provided some amazing racing. DeCarlo continued to dive underneath McDaniel for the lead; yet, McDaniel had the momentum and continued as the leader. On lap 10, Randy passed DeCarlo for second. The final ten laps provided the same tight knit racing that thrilled the crowd. Ryan ended up leading all 20 laps but it wasn't as easy as it might seem. "We had a good race tonight," said McDaniel. "It is fun to race with my dad and Nick and knowing that we are all going to race hard without the threat of crashing." It marked McDaniel's third win of the year at Chico in just four starts.
Randy McDaniel completed his double duty driving duties by winning the 15-lap limited late model main event. Only five cars showed up. Three of them are fielded by the Micheli family. Ken and Matt Micheli should be given a lot of credit for supporting this division the past two years. James Edens was a surprise entrant but provided some good racing. He led the first 12 laps. Coming out of turn two he drifted just a bit wide. This allowed McDaniel to dive to the bottom and pass Edens going down the back straight. McDaniel cruised to the popular win. It was his second win of the year in this division. Charlie Marrs finished in the second spot while Edens finished third.
Tony Richards dominated both the first heat race and the 15 lap main event during the inaugural race for the economy winged sprint car division. A total of five economy winged sprint cars showed up. This provided enough cars to allow them to race. It was good to see all the hard work finally pay off for this group of drivers and allow them to get a race in. "We want to keep supporting this division and hopefully it continued to grow," said Richards in victory lane.Full results available at www.silverdollarspeedway.com