THORNTON HOPS TO THE WIN AT THE EASTER EGG EXTRAVAGANZA
Chandler’s Ricky Thornton Jr had a miracle story Saturday night at Central Arizona Raceway. During his IMCA Modified heat race, Thornton lost a motor crossing the finish line in his #20RT Certified Inspection Service sponsored Shaw chassis. While some of the crew stayed at the track to pull the old motor, the rest of the crew raced back to Chandler and loaded a new motor up. The crew put the new motor in the car, and Thornton made their hard efforts pay off with his $750 win.
With a new progressive purse announced this week, the IMCA Modified field was at 29 cars for the evening. “The racers asked for more money, and so I made a Progressive Purse for all classes, and the IMCA Modifieds took advantage of it,” promoter Benji Lyons stated. The field was split into four heats, which were won by Eric Center, Ricky Thornton Jr, Jay Foster, and Cody Graham. With the extra cars, a B-Main was needed and El Paso, Texas driver Chad Falco took the win.
The IMCA Modified field lined up for their feature and Brian Schultz along with Eric Center sat on the front row. Center jumped into the early lead, and a caution flew when Nathan Tanquarry spun in turn 3. On the next attempt, Jay Foster got loose in turn 4, and spun which created a massive pile-up involving at least ten drivers. All of the drivers walked away, but there was a lot of damage to several top cars.
Back under green, Thornton powered by Center on the restart, and Jason Noll along with Tim Ward made their way to the front. Noll made a run at Thornton coming to the white flag, but was unable to get around Thornton for the win. Noll settled for second ahead of Ward in his new JET Chassis, George Fronsman was fourth and Center was fifth.
The X-Mods brought a healthy 20-car field, but the race ended for Dusty Gauthier in his heat race after his trailing arm broke. Gauthier went for a ride off turn 3, and was ok after being checked out. Jeff Hartley, Richard Johnson and AJ Heubner took the heat race wins. Hartley and Joey McCullough led the field to the green flag. When all the dust settled from several caution flags, a 3-car battle for the lead was going on between Heubner, Jason George and Hartley. Coming to the white flag, Heubner and Harley made contact racing for the win sending Hartley up the track into George. Heubner crossed the line first over Hartley. Hartley never reported to the tech area so he was disqualified moving Trevor Miller into second over George, McCullough and Nolan Morrow.
The Desert Dwarf Car club brought a 30-car field which required Heat Races and B-Mains to trim down the field. Tim Cotherman, Ryan Henesey, Eric Muse and Rick Godsey took the heat race wins while Rat Stafford claimed the B-Main. Samantha Zaragoza and Steve Kapaun shared the front-row for the feature event. Kapaun jumped into the early lead, but Brian Stehr came into the picture after a few laps and stormed by as Kapaun was losing power. Stehr opened up a lead and never looked back. Jim Hock crossed the line second over Tim Cotherman; Helen Henesey was fourth over her son Ryan Henesey.
The 14-Car Super Stock field were split into a couple heat races, where were won by Joe Saringer and Eric Kelley. Mike Brigner and Allen Kelley led the field to the green flag. Kelley jumped into the lead and powered his way to the win. Tommy Hussak worked his way into second, over Dave Kelley, Brigner and double-division racer George Fronsman.
The next event at the Central Arizona Raceway will be on April 13 when the Late Models invade the speedway. The IMCA Modifieds will return along with the X-Mods and the Desert Dwarf Cars. For more information please visit www.centralazraceway.net or text CAR to 22828 to get more information on upcoming events.