News & Notes: SRL Round 7 at Irwindale

Event: The “Salted Metals 100 presented by Pinnacle Peak Steakhouse” will be event #7 of 10 of the SPEARS SRL Southwest Tour Series championship season. It will take place at Irwindale Speedway on July 17 and will pay $10,000-to-win, thanks to David Mulcahy and Salted Metals. Mulcahy has been a long-time supported of the series and has sponsored big paying events over the last six seasons. Glenn Davis, with Pinnacle Peak Steakhouse, will present a barbeque for the teams on Friday night. It is always a popular event.

 

The Spears Pro Late Models presented by Sigma Performance Services will compete in the “Spears Manufacturing 60 presented by Optima Batteries” for $3,000-to-win. It will also be Round #7 of their 11-race season. Round #7 for the SPEARS Modified Series will the teams compete in the “General Tire 60 presented by COMP Cams”, paying $1,500-to-win. Both the Pro Late Models and Modifieds will compete on the inner 1/3-mile oval, with the Super Late Models on the ½-mile.

 

Championship Battle: Derek Thorn turned his victory at Kern County Raceway into the championship lead. Thorn now leads Buddy Shepherd by 13 points, 985 to 972. 2015 SRL Champion Jacob Gomes trails Shepherd by 36 markers. Kole Raz and Cale Kanke round out the top-five. There have been four different championship leaders in six events, Preston Peltier, Jacob Gomes, Buddy Shepherd and now Thorn. Thorn, Shepherd and Gomes have battled it out for the win in the last two events. Thorn beating Shepherd at All American Speedway after Gomes got a flat tire while leading with four laps to go. He beat Gomes at Kern County Raceway after a feverish battle with Shepherd, which resulted in contact, relegating Shepherd to third.

 

Jeremy Doss leads the championship standings in both the Pro Late Models and the Modifieds. Doss leads Dylan Zampa, Logan Zampa, Mike Lovell and Tanner Reif in the Pro Late Models and Eddie Secord, Travis Thirkettle, Travis McCullough, and Sam Jacks in the Modifieds.

 

Rookie Battle: Buddy Shepherd leads Kole Raz, Brandon Farrington, Corey Neveau and Dylan Garner in the 2021 Rookie-of-the-Year battle. Four rookies are entered in this weekend’s event with Corey Neveau the only top-five driver not scheduled to compete.

 

Motor City Throwdown Challenge: The SPEARS SRL Southwest Tour Series has announced a new program in conjunction with Motor City Throwdown. With Derek Thorn winning the last five events on the schedule, Motor City Throwdown is putting up $2,500 for the first driver who can beat Thorn. With four events left on the schedule, there will be four opportunities to pull off the feat. If no one can beat Thorn, he will take home the $2,500 himself. If someone beats Thorn this weekend, they will take home $12,500.

 

Thorn is flattered to be at the center of the program and thankful for the sponsors who support the series.

 

“Thanks to Motor City for putting this together”, Thorn expressed. “It’s awesome to have great sponsors supporting this series. It’s lonely at the top and we can’t win ‘em all, but we’re going to damn sure try.”

 

Jacob Gomes finished second in the last event and nearly pulled off the victory at All American Speedway just over a month ago. He is looking forward to the added incentive to win.

 

“I’m excited for it”, Gomes exclaimed! “Beat Derek and get more money, it just makes it even more exciting to beat him.”

 

Kole Raz and the Sigma Performance Services team are fourth in the points and are beginning to find their footing, producing consecutive top-five finishes. Raz feels the challenge will add even more excitement to the already electrifying racing.

 

“I think it adds even more excitement for this weekend and potentially the next upcoming races, not that the tour wasn’t lacking any excitement already”, Raz explained. “It’s amazing that Motor City Throwdown is providing the bonus. If the fans have enjoyed the last few battles for the win, they will love this weekend’s event, for it’s going to intensify even more this weekend at Irwindale.”

 

Great Food: Pinnacle Peak Steakhouse is the presenting sponsor for this weekend’s event. Owner Glenn Davis will also be presenting a barbecue for the teams Friday night after practice. It has become an occasion that is a favorite for both the teams and officials.

 

Two-time SPEARS Modified Series Champion: Dylan Cappello will make his third career SRL start, this time in the Garcia Racing Super Late Model normally piloted by Christian McGhee and Zach Telford. He is happy to return to Irwindale Speedway, which has a special significance for the Race Engineer from the David Gilliland Racing (DGR) Shops.

 

“It (Irwindale) was my first win in the Modified Series, back in 2014”, Cappello recalled. “It kinda holds a special place with me and I feel like we do really well there. We usually run up front and have a shot at the win every time we go there. I feel like it caters to my driving style. I like the faster places, driving out there by the wall. The last time we were there, we were running right around the bottom, and we had two grooves to race with. Hopefully, it widens out and we get that same racy feel.”

 

Cappello has two starts in the SPEARS SRL Southwest Tour Series, both closing out the 2020 season. He participated at the Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in November, finishing an impressive second in the 42-car field. He also competed at the season finale at Kern County Raceway, but struggled, attempting to run in the top dozen.

 

“I think the series is really tough”, Cappello stated. “Obviously, Derek (Thorn) is going to be hard to beat anywhere on the West Coast. Even when he comes out to the East Coast, he is tough to beat everywhere. I think there is top notch equipment out there on the West Coast, with a lot of top-notch drivers. It is a good test for your abilities. It’s really hard to just show up and only run one or two hit and miss races a year and compete against these guys, who have done it all year.”

 

Cappello continued, “I hope to be right in the mix with Thorn and Shepherd. I’ve been watching the last two or three races as well as brushing up on watching past races at Irwindale and watching the Kern race two weeks ago. I just hope I can get up in the mix with them and compete. The Supers have a really tight fit with setup and if you are just a tick off, with how close the field is, it can take you from competing in the top-five to really easily running 12th.”

 

Record Setter: Trevor Huddleston will make his second 2021 start in the SPEARS SRL Southwest Tour Series this weekend. His second start comes on the heels of his record setting 68th career victory at Irwindale Speedway. Huddleston has 17 career starts in the series and will be looking for his first victory.

 

Schedule: Admission Gates open at 4:00 pm (PST) with Qualifying for the Pro Late Models, Modifieds and Super Late Models immediately following. An On-track autograph session is scheduled for 5:45 pm, with the National Anthem at 6:45 pm. The Main Events kick off at 7:00 pm. The “Spears Manufacturing 60 presented by Optima Batteries” will lead off for the Pro Late Models. The Modifieds will take their turn in the “General Tire 60 presented by COMP Cams” and the Super Late Models will race for $10,000 in the “Salted Metals 100 presented by Pinnacle Peak Steakhouse. The Mini Van Demolition Derby will wrap up the on-track action. A fireworks display will complete the evenings activities.

 

Coverage: For those unable to attend the event in person, all the action can be seen LIVE at www.SpearsRacing.TV or on a delayed basis on MAVTV.

 

Celebrating its twenty-first season in 2021, the SPEARS Southwest Tour Series is a regional stock car series competing on paved ovals in the southwestern portion of the U.S. “The SPEARS Southwest Tour Series…Where the Champions Race”.

 

Entry List:

4          Dylan Lupton, Elk Grove, CA – Lupton Excavation

11B      Tracy Bolin, Valley Springs, CA – Fisk Demolition, David’s Racing Products

16        Jacob Gomes, Manteca, CA – Sunnyvalley Smoked Meats, Dell’Osso Family Farms

21R      Kole Raz, Lake Oswego, OR – Sigma Performance Services, Wells Johnson*

22A      Andy Allen, Garden Grove, CA – RJ Allen, Inc.

22S       Buddy Shepherd, Bakersfield, CA – Martin Auto Color, Advanced Distribution*

23        Dan Holtz, Pacific Palesades, CA – Beverly Hills Rejuvenation Center

24        Scott Sanchez, Bakersfield, CA – Salted Metals, Gibson Crane

25F       Brandon Farrington, Tucson, AZ – Sigma Performance Services, Wells Johnson Co.*

27        John Moore, Granite Bay, CA – JM Environmental Inc., Berco Redwood

33        Cale Kanke, Frazier Park, CA – Allie Bakes, Movember

37        Keith Spangler, Porter Ranch, CA – Salted Metals, Spangler Racing

43        Derek Thorn, Bakersfield, CA – Santa Maria Brewery, H&M Motorsports

44        Bob Lyon, Newhall, CA  – Alliance Rental Solutions, Shell Roofing Solutions

50        Trevor Huddleston, Agoura Hills, CA – High Point Racing, Sunrise Ford, Racecar Factory

51T      Dean Thompson, Anaheim Hills – Thompson Pipeline, Racecar Factory*

51V      Carlos Vieira, Livingston, CA – 51 FIFTY, Allied Packaging

57        Dylan Cappello, Peoria, AZ – Quick Response Garage Door, STR Race Cars

80        Andre Prescott, La Quinta, CA – Burgeson’s Heating and Air, Prescott Sports Therapy

90        Ross Strmiska, Stockton, CA – Nut Up, Masellis Drilling

97        Dylan Garner, Yorba Linda, CA – Wilson Motorsports, Vandoorn Racing Development*

98        Blaine Rocha, Oakdale, CA – MASROC Farms, Masellis Drilling

 

-SPEARS SRL Southwest Tour Series Press Release and Photo

News & Notes: SRL Round 7 at Irwindale