Lakeport’s Derek Thorn continued his domination of the Spears SRL Southwest Tour by cruising to the win in last Saturday’s Big Brothers and Big Sisters 125 at the LoanMart Madera Speedway.
Thorn grabbed the lead on lap 34 from pole sitter Jeremy Doss and never looked back as he racked up his third win in just four series starts this season. Third-generation driver Ross Strmiska of Manteca finished second and Tracy Bolin rounded out the top three.
Prunedale’s Jim Pettit II, the SRL series points leader heading into the race, got caught up in a massive multi-car wreck in turn four of lap nine. The pile up left Pettit and rookie Brandon White tangled against the wall and it took over 10 minutes to pull the two cars apart before the race could resume.
Even with his near-perfect record Thorn sits only third in the SRL season standings with 710 points after he elected to skip the previous race on June 1 at Redwood Acres Raceway. Pettit, despite his misfortune at Madera, remains in the SRL series lead with 815 points and Strmiska sits in second with 771.
“We’re out here to win races,” said Thorn, the SRL defending champion. “We pick and choose the races we want to win. Winning in today’s age is tough, but our team is doing great and to get these wins from a group of such talented drivers is awesome.”
Thorn has become very familiar with winning in 2013. He is also the current leader of the NASCAR K&N West Series, posting two wins and six top 5 finishes in six starts.
“Yeah, he’s just an amazing driver,” Strmiska said describing Thorn. “But you know we’re up there in points and after we do some work we’ll take it to them next time.”
Manteca’s Jacob Gomes finished the race in fifth and now sits fourth in the SRL standings, just one slim point behind Thorn with 709.
The SRL now heads to Rocky Mountain Speedway in Colorado on July 20 before returning to the Stockton 99 Speedway on Saturday, August 17 for Teamsters Local 439 Night.
This Saturday night, the 99 will be hosting race No. 2 of the Tri-Holiday Series featuring the 51/50 Fireworks 125, presented by Jackson Rancheria Casino & Resort. The NASCAR Whelen All-American Series program will feature the Western Late Models where Grove’s Matt Scott will be attempting to make it a perfect seven wins in seven 2013 starts. Also on the program will be the Modifieds, Super Stocks, Pure Stocks, and Basically-4-Cylinders plus a fireworks spectacular.
Madera Speedway will also be in action on Saturday with a seven-division program that includes Twin Toyota Sedan main events plus the Limited Late Models, Hobby Stocks, Modified Super Toyotas, 4-Bangers, Sport Modifieds and the 18-Second Bracket.
The Red Bull United States Grand Prix, featuring the MotoGP World Championship, returns to Mazda Raceway at Laguna Seca in Monterey for its ninth consecutive year on July 19-21. Considered one of the most technically-demanding race tracks, Laguna Seca will be the ninth stop on the international 18-race 2013 MotoGP schedule.
MotoGP features multinational riders onboard the most sophisticated and powerful prototype machines in the world. Three Americans, Colin Edwards, Ben Spies and former World Champion Nicky Hayden will represent the stars and stripes while going against popular international riders like nine-time World Champion Valentino Rossi of Italy and reigning World Champion Jorge Lorenzo of Spain.
Last weekend, Lorenzo turned in one of the gutsiest race performances in recent memory on the difficult Assen circuit in the Netherlands. In Thursday’s practice on a wet track, he had a horrific high speed crash in which he was thrown violently from his bike and broke his collarbone. Lorenzo flew back to Barcelona for surgery to repair the injury early Friday and miraculously returned to take the green flag in Saturday’s race. Despite being in obvious pain Lorenzo rode to a fifth place finish, behind winner Rossi, to keep his title hopes alive.
With is gallant effort, Lorenzo now trails Spain’s Dani Pedrosa by a 136 to 127 margin in the 2013 standings heading into next weekend’s race in Germany.
It will be an action packed weekend of two-wheel racing at Laguna Seca. Support events will include AMA SuperSport, Daytona SportBike and National Guard Superbike plus a variety of off track activities. For more info visit www.mazdaraceway.com or call 1-800-327-7322.