(April 24, 2021 by Gary Thomas) – After finishing a close second the previous week Fremont’s Shane Golobic returned to Ocean Speedway on Friday and had his way with things in the feature, en route to his first Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo win of the season. Photo by Top Dawg Photos
Sharing victory lane with Golobic at the event were Jim Pettit II with the IMCA Modifieds, Quintin Harris with the Hobby Stocks, Tommy Velasquez III with the South Bay Dwarf Cars and Tony Gullo with the Four Bangers.
The 30-lap Taco Bravo Winged 360 Sprint Car A-main started out with Salinas racer Keith Day Jr. and red-hot Aromas driver Justin Sanders going at it hard for the lead. Things got a little too close for comfort off the fourth corner on lap two however, which resulted in Sanders unfortunately getting upside down and ending his night. Sean Becker had nowhere to go and was also collected, but would restart.
Day was able to continue with the lead but shortly after had his hands full with Golobic, who took command and never looked back. The two-time Ocean Sprints titlist pulled away with ease during a long green flag run and went on to accept the Ed Entz checkered flag for another victory at his home track. Some of the biggest excitement in the feature came from watching Clovis’ Corey Day run the ragged edge of the quarter-mile. The 15-year-old made several impressive moves to lock up second by the finish.
Keith Day Jr. put together a solid performance to narrowly beat out Hollister’s Ryan Bernal and round out the podium. Bernal and Fresno’s Dominic Scelzi completed the top-five. The remainder of the top-10 was comprised of Colby Copeland, Mitchell Faccinto, Bud Kaeding, JJ Ringo and Tucker Worth. The evening’s B-main went to Corey Day while the Dash went to Keith Day Jr. The four heat races held were pocketed by Joey Ancona, Keith Day Jr., Ryan Bernal and Sean Becker. Golobic began the night by just missing a track record to set fast time in the 32-car field by clocking a fastest lap of 11.248.
Ocean Sprints main event finish: 1 #17W Shane Golobic 2 #41 Corey Day 3 #22 Keith Day Jr. 4 #17WX Ryan Bernal 5 #41S Dominic Scelzi 6 #5V Colby Copeland 7 #37 Mitchell Faccinto 8 #69 Bud Kaeding 9 #2K J.J. Ringo 10 #33 Tucker Worth 11 #88A Joey Ancona 12 #7P Jake Andreotti 13 #3T Nick Ringo 14 #88K Koen Shaw 15 #18 Grant Champlin 16 #83V Sean Becker 17 #12J John Clark 18 #8 Jeremy Chisum 19 #78 Bret Barney 20 #17 Justin Sanders 21 #3M Adam Kaeding 22 #72W Kurt Nelson
Track conditions lent well to entertaining racing in all divisions Friday night. Matt Hagio grabbed the early lead in the IMCA Modified feature but encountered problems on a lap two restart that sent him to the rear of the field. JC Elrod then inherited the top-spot before feeling heavy pressure from veteran Jim Pettit II. The Ocean Speedway icon hounded Elrod’s rear until charging past for the lead with six laps complete. Robert Marsh battled his way up to second until issues left him parked on the speedway just prior to the halfway point.
Round one winner Cody Burke then came to life over the second half of the 25-lapper and tried to find a way around Pettit. The pair raced close together and delighted the fans watching live via FloRacing. Pettit ended up claiming the victory over Cody Burke, Austin Burke, Carl Berendsen and Elrod. Hagio and Pettit captured the two heat races held during the night.
The Hobby Stocks showcased some of their best racing of the season on Friday in the 20-lap finale. Tony Oliveira blasted to the lead from the outside of the front row and held command with Wally Kennedy and Jerry Skelton not far behind. Drama on lap-five then saw Kennedy and Skelton come together off the second corner, relegating each to the rear of the field.
Quintin Harris moved up to second and then sliced his way past Oliveira for the lead on lap 10. Harris went on to pick up the big win as Skelton rebounded nicely to carve his way back to a runner up finish. Oliveira, Adriane Frost and Joe Gallaher completed the top-five. Skelton and Terry Campion were heat race winners.
The South Bay Dwarf Car main event was all about Tommy Velasquez III who utterly dominated the 20-lapper. Velasquez charged away from the field to win easily over Mark Biscardi, Travis Day, Trafton Chandler and Dan Zuger. Although Velasquez was in a different zip code the fight for second was a good one between Biscardi and several other drivers. Heat race wins were picked off by Biscardi and Velasquez.
In the Four Banger finale it was Richard Mitchell leading early until Tony Gullo grabbed the point on lap six. Gullo eventually won his second feature of the season over Bill Beardsley, Mitchell, Nicole Beardsley and Travis Vangilder.
Racing returns to Ocean Speedway next Friday night with another round of Ocean Sprints presented by Taco Bravo competition plus Hobby Stocks, Four Bangers and Police N Pursuit.