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Jonathan Allard Wins in Hometown
By Troy Hennig
CHICO, CA (8-17-12) - It feels good to be home according to Jonathan Allard. The Chico native led all 25-laps to win the Friday night Wells Fargo Point Race #14 at Silver Dollar Speedway. Allard and team had just come home from a very successful Knoxville Nationals trip. "I am so grateful to be home and in front of my fans and my family," said Allard. "To beat Forsberg and Larson at Chico means we had a great night."
Other winners on the night included Jake Vantol in the street stocks, Doug Emory in the winged economy sprints and Mike Slightom Jr. in the Hobby Stocks. Tonight's races were presented by Riebes Auto Parts and Aaron's. It was also kid's bike night. Over 1,000 fans gathered in the grandstands to enjoy a night of dirt track racing fun.
The 410 winged main saw Allard take the lead from the get-go over Auburns Andy Forsberg. The race went 22-laps non stop until Bud Walberg stopped in turn four. It was quite a show up to that point. Allard resumed as the leader with Forsberg and Kyle Larson right behind him on the restart. Allard went on to lead the final three laps without incident. "I have to give all the credit to crew who worked like crazy to get us here tonight," said Allard. "Looking at the stands this full also makes me happy." Forsberg held on to second. Larson ran third. Brad Bumgarner did a wonderful job to finish fourth. Sean Becker rounded out the top five. Forsberg will hold a four-point lead over Becker going into the final night of the year next weekend.
Sean Becker started the night by turning the quickest lap at 11.677. Stuart Krum won the first heat race. John Michael Bunch won the second heat race with a 360 motor. Danielle Simpson won the third heat. Craig Swim won the B-Main event by holding off Tyler Wolf.
Fritz Zanker took the early lead of the street stock main. On lap two Jake Vantol moved around Zanker for the lead. Zanker then brought out the yellow on lap nine when he stopped on the track. On the restart, Phil Marino took over the second spot. Marino seemed faster than Vantol but was never able to pass him for the lead. Vantol held a consistent and steady racing line to get the popular win. Marino got the second spot. Shawn Smith finished in the third spot. Bill Patterson ran fourth and Gary Newman was fifth. Patterson and Marino each won heat races tonight. "I have to thank all my sponsors and the guys who help me on and off the track," said Vantol.
Hobby Stock main event was hotly contested between Mike Slightom Jr. and Brian Compton. Both put on a great race for the lead. While Slightom Jr. held his own and got the win, both drivers should be commended for their efforts. An early caution on lap two for Kyle Allen slowed the event. Behind the top two finishing cars were Jesse Skidmore and Larry Button. It was the final race of the year for this division. Mike Slightom Jr. also won the heat race. "I am so happy to have this many family and friends in victory lane with me," said Slightom.
Doug Emery won the exciting Winged Economy Sprint Car main event. He held off Tony Richards for the win. Richards had been on a hot streak of late. Emery took the lead and was able to fight his way through traffic and hold off Richards. Another impressive car count graced the pits for tonight's race. Don Emery ran in the third spot. Scott Gannet finished in the fourth spot. Nick Larson rounded out the top five. Richards won the eight lap heat race. "I have to thank Dave Smalley for giving me a chance to race," said Emery. "I think this class is going to explode next year with a lot of cars."Full results are on line at www.silverdollarspeedway.com