WATSONVILLE, CALIFORNIA (July 16, 2023) – Two-time Ocean Speedway Sprint Car champion Shane Golobic prevailed in the 13th annual Howard Kaeding Classic on Saturday night, scoring a thrilling $6900 victory before a packed house in Watsonville. The NARC 410 Sprint Car win adds Golobic to an illustrious list of HK Classic winners at the Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds. Photo by Top Dawg Photos
“These guys race hard man in California. Every lap you go to be up on the wheel. Having Corey and Justin behind me, two of the best in the business behind me, you got to go,” Golobic said. “Luckily we were able to hold on. Was real nervous near the end of the race on where to go with such aggressive drivers behind me. This is definitely one I’ve wanted to win for so many years year now and really cool to win in honor of Howard!”
Golobic had the quickest overall lap time of the four group fast qualifiers to win ARP Bolts qualifying. Tim Kaeding then won the Sunnyvalley Bacon Dash. Kaeding and Golobic made up the front row over 24 starts in the $6900 to win, $1200 to start 30-lap contest.
Calamity ensued on the opening circuit when 2021 HK winner Sean Becker of Roseville spun and clipped Justyn Cox of Sacramento. Cox flipped and numerous cars barreled in. Cox and both Jeremy and Jason Chisum were eliminated from contention.
Kaeding led the opening lap of the feature and led the pack into lapped traffic on lap six. Golobic showed a nose in turn four and then a few laps later took over control on lap 10.
NARC points leader Corey Day of Clovis advanced to second position and challenged Golobic for the lead. Friday night winner and 2022 HK winner Justin Sanders of Aromas nabbed third from Kaeding as well.
Oakley’s Dylan Bloomfield flipped off the cushion in turns one and two to bring out a red flag on lap 19.
Golobic put together a strong restart that dropped Day into a duel with Sanders for second. The battle was halted when Arizona’s Nick Parker spun in turn two on lap 21.
Day restarted much better and hounded Golobic. He threw a slide job attempt from two car lengths back on lap 26 and collided with Golobic on the exit of turn two. Sanders attempted to turn underneath them and go two-for-one into the lead. Day stopped on the backstretch to bring out the caution. Golobic preserved the lead and Sanders would restart second with four to go. Day rejoined after a trip to the work area.
Golobic and Sanders jockeyed all over the Ocean Speedway over the final four laps with Golobic driving the bottom on the final corner to secure the win. Sanders finished second followed by Tim Kaeding, event organizer Bud Kaeding, and two-time NARC champion Dominic Scelzi of Fresno.
Surprise, Arizona’s Drake Edwards put on a driving clinic in the $1000-to-win Western Midget Racing feature that was ultimately nullified on the scales after the 25-lap race. Edwards, the Friday winner, chipped away from his fifth starting position as fast heat race winner Blake Bower of Brentwood enjoyed the race lead from the pole position.
Edwards charged around the outside of Santa Cruz’s Logan Mitchell for third then drove past Oakley’s Bryant Bell for second on lap five. Edwards then soared outside of Bower to lead lap eight.
Bell slowed and exited the race on lap ten. Edwards used the outside to sweep past a majority of the 15-car field in lapped traffic, ultimately accumulating a nine second advantage over the two-time defending series champion Blake Bower.
Edwards crossed the stripe first followed by Bower. Mitchell won a race long battle with Lodi’s Nate Wait followed by Livermore’s Greg Dennett and Adrianna DeMartini of Brentwood. After Edwards was light at the scales, Bower was credited with his 12th Ocean WMR victory and the $1000 prize.
2022 Ocean Speedway and IMCA Modified state champion Jim Pettit II used the outside as well to take the 25-lap main event. Trevor Fitz of Camarillo controlled the race for the first nine laps before slowing on the exit of turn four, surrendering the lead and bringing out the caution flag.
Robert Marsh of Salinas assumed the lead while Andy Obertello of Hollister and Austin Burke of Salinas battled for second.
Burke had a slow restart on lap 13 that dropped him back to fifth position. Eighth starting Pettit came to life on the outside, taking second on lap 14 on the backstretch. He remained on the outside and drove into the lead on lap 16.
Marsh slowed from the second position before a caution for debris in turn two. Pettit maintained the outside and held off Obertello challenging on the inside to claim the win. Prescott Valley, Ariz.’s Timothy Allerdings finished third followed by 14th-starting Bryan Clark of Bakersfield, and Oakley’s Andrew Pearce.
Watsonville’s Adriane Frost thrilled the big crowd with a popular victory in the 20-lap Hobby Stock feature. Frost lead wire-to-wire but faced a formidable late race challenge from 10th-starting DJ Keldsen of Newman.
Keldsen ran on the left rear wheel of Frost over the final four laps. Frost tried to shut the door on the final turn and Keldsen swooped to her outside. Frost won narrowly over Keldsen in an exciting finish. Friday winner Joe Gallaher finished third followed Watsonville’s Steve Remde and Bobby Gallaher.
Ocean Speedway races again on Friday night July 21 with Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo highlighting a six-division card. For more information visit www.OceanSpeedway.com
Ocean Speedway July 15, 2023 NARC 410 Howard Kaeding Classic Results
A Feature (30 Laps): 1. 17W-Shane Golobic; 2. 2X-Justin Sanders; 3. 0-Tim Kaeding; 4. 69-Bud Kaeding; 5. 41-Dominic Scelzi; 6. 5V-Colby Copeland; 7. 3-Kaleb Montgomery; 8. 7B-Sean Becker; 9. 88N-DJ Netto; 10. 88A-Joey Ancona; 11. 83T-Tanner Carrick; 12. 14-Corey Day; 13. 26-Billy Aton; 14. 72W-Kurt Nelson; 15. 17-Kalib Henry; 16. 24-Chase Johnson; 17. 3D-Caleb Debem; 18. 121-Caeden Steele; 19. 12J-John Clark; 20. 115-Nick Parker; 21. 83V-Dylan Bloomfield; 22. 42X-Justyn Cox; 23. 25Z-Jason Chisum; 24. 8-Jeremy Chisum