(11/4/18 – STOCKTON, CA, By Joe Shivak & Jim Allen) … Rico Abreu won the 30-lap season finale for the Fujitsu King of the West-NARC Sprint Car Series at the 35th annual Tribute to Gary Patterson at the Stockton Dirt Track on Saturday night.
Abreu, aboard his familiar blue and yellow Abreu Vineyards/Alpinestars No. 24 Eagle, pocketed $5,000 from the HydrochemPSC and Williams Roofing enhanced purse. He became the eighth different winner for the West Coast’s premier 410 winged sprint car touring series.
With his second-place finish and a DNF by his closest contender Shane Golobic, Kyle Hirst was crowed the series champion for the fourth time. The Roth Motorsports driver only needed to finish 13th or better to clinch the title. When Golobic tangled with a slower car and flipped in the fourth turn on the seventh lap, ending his night, Hirst won the title.
With title contenders Hirst and Golobic starting on the front row, the two waged a battle to see who would dominate early. It was Hirst’s No. 83 KPC getting the better of the Tarlton Motorsports No. 21x up until the race’s first red which was Golobic’s demise. He had just been passed by Abreu when he got involved with lapped traffic.
Hirst got command after the restart and held the point until lap 19 when Abreu showed his nose and got around Hirst’s car briefly. The two traded the lead again and Abreu searched for another opportunity to pass Hirst. That came with just a few laps to go when the blue No. 24 stormed around the black No. 83 in between turns three and four.
Hirst settled for the runner-up spot. Earlier, he also pocketed $1100 for winning the Sunnyvalley Bacon Dash.
DJ Netto was in the hunt throughout the contest battling wheel-to-wheel with the two frontrunners, but had to settle for third aboard the Netto Ag KPC. Mitchell Faccinto drove the TSG Recycling TPC across the checkered in fourth chased by 12th starter Bud Kaeding in the Alviso Rock Maxim.
The second five included Swift Metal Finishing hardcharger Colby Copeland (who started 14th), Willie Croft, Chase Johnson, Andy Gregg and Jason Statler.
Bobby McMahan won the 12-lap Flowmaster semi. Golobic paced the 28-car field in qualifying with the only sub-13 second lap on the 4/10ths mile oval. His time was 12.895.
A few King of the West-NARC points chasers experienced tough nights. This included Jarrett Soares and Nathan Rolfe, who both flipped hard in individual qualifying crashes. Jenna Frazier also took a wild ride after tangling with another car in the semi, catapulting over the first turn in the semi. Luckily there were no injuries.
KWS-NARC-Hydrocham PSC/Fujitsu Feature Event (30 laps): Rico Abreu, Kyle Hirst, D.J. Netto, Mitchell Faccinto, Bud Kaeding, Colby Copeland, Willie Croft, Chase Johnson, Andy Gregg, Jason Statler, Bobby McMahan, Kurt Nelson, Gary Paulson, Scott Parker, Dustin Golobic, Richard Brace Jr., Craig Stidham, Tanner Thorson, Shane Golobic, Justyn Cox, Kenny Allen.
Lap Leaders: Hirst 1-18, Abreu 19, Hirst 20-27, Abreu 28-30
ARP Fast Qualifier (4/10 mile clay oval): Shane Golobic – 12.895 seconds
BMRS First Heat (10 laps): Tanner Thorson, Willie Croft, Shane Golobic, Cole Macedo, Bobby McMahan, Kurt Nelson, Eli Deshaies.
Hydrochem PSC Second Heat (10 laps): Colby Copeland, Kyle Hirst, Chase Johnson, Scott Parker, Kenny Allen, Gary Paulson, Rick Brophy.
The Cushion/Mills Video Promotions Third Heat (10 laps): Justyn Cox, DJ Netto, Rico Abreu, Jason Statler, Richard Brace Jr., Dustin Golobic, Pat Harvey
Kaeding Performance Center Fourth Heat (10 laps): Mitchell Faccinto, Bud Kaeding, Andy Gregg, Craig Stidham, Jenna Frazier
Sunnyvalley Bacon Trophy Dash (6 laps): Kyle Hirst, Shane Golobic, Rico Abreu, DJ Netto, Mitchell Faccinto, Andy Gregg.
Flowmaster Semi-Main (10-laps): Bobby McMahan, Kurt Nelson, Dustin Golobic, Kenny Allen, Gary Paulson, Richard Brace Jr., Ricky Brophy, Pat Harvey, Jenna Frazier, Eli Deshaies.