(7/20/19) By Joe Shivak & Jim Allen, Watsonville, CA … Bud Kaeding won the fast paced 30-lap feature which honors his legendary grandfather Howard at Ocean Speedway on Friday night. The NARC-King of the West presented by Fujitsu 410 Series event paid $5,000 to the winner. Kaeding drove the famous No. 0 Morrie Williams-owned Alviso Rock-sponsored Maxim sprint car
Shane Golobic brought the Matt Woods Nos Energy Drink-sponsored car home in the runner up spot after being passed by Kaeding. Willie Croft scored third in his Amerikote sprinter after being in the hunt for most of the contest.
Jonathan Allard and Billy Aton brought the 24-car field to the green with Aton taking the early lead when Allard stumbled in the first turn. The race would go three laps before a caution for a Jeremy Chisum and Danny Faria spin in the middle of the third and fourth turns. Aton led Croft and Golobic on the restart. On the seventh circuit, Golobic took over the second spot. Three laps later, sixth place starter Kaeding, who methodically advanced each lap, would pass Golobic for the runner-up spot.
A caution on lap 16 for a Sean Watts spin in the third turn would bunch the field back up. Aton was still leading at that point, but the restart proved costly as he would fade under the pressure from a high-speed freight train of Kaeding, Golobic and Croft.
A three-wide traffic jam in the third turn would bring out the caution flag with only six laps remaining. The shunt left Allard with a flat left rear tire and Dominic Scelzi with a bent front wing among other mechanical issues, forcing him to pit for repairs. Both cars returned to action.
The restart quickly turned back to yellow when Kyle Offill spun in the middle of the third and fourth turn. The caution proved costly for Justin Sanders who had just passed Croft for third but got put back a spot.
Kaeding was not to be denied the final six laps holding off both Golobic and Croft. The Campbell, California third generation driver performed a series of patented Kaeding victory donuts in the fourth turn to celebrate the victory. His car eventually stalled after doing no less than a dozen spins, so Kaeding jumped out of the stopped car and ran across the finish line in “Ricky Bobby” style.
“I wanted this one real bad,” admitted an energetic Kaeding in victory lane. “We had a ton of family here who don’t normally make it out to the racetrack and it was great to win in front of all of them.” Kaeding went on to thank his team, car owner, and the many sponsors and supporters of the Howard Kaeding Classic.
Two-time King of the West winner Justin Sanders and Colby Copeland rounded out the top five. The second five to cross the checkered were 14th starter Jason Statler, 20th starter and semi-winner Cole Macedo, championship points leader Ryan Bernal, 16th starter Jeremy Chisum and DJ Netto. Macedo’s efforts earned him a $800 hardcharger bonus from Swift Metal Finishing and various sponsors.
Heat races were picked off by … Aton, Allard, Golobic & Kaeding. Allard claimed the Sunnyvalley Bacon trophy dash.
Sean Watts took home a $1000 payday for winning the four-lap Williams Roofing Dash for Cash!
FUJITSU FEATURE EVENT (30-laps): Bud Kaeding, Shane Golobic, Willie Croft, Justin Sanders, Colby Copeland, Jason Statler, Cole Macedo, Ryan Bernal, Jeremy Chisum, D J Netto, Billy Aton, Dominic Scelzi, Brad Furr, Kyle Offill, Nathan Rolfe, Danny Faria, Kenny Allen, Sean Watts, Geoff Ensign, James Ringo, Trent Canales, Jonathan Allard, Mitchell Faccinto, Chase Johnson
LAP LEADERS: Bill Aton 1-16, Kaeding 17-30.
ARP FAST QUALIFIER (35 cars): Willie Croft – 11.847 seconds
BROWN & MILLER RACING SOLUTIONS FIRST HEAT (10 laps): Billy Aton, Chase Johnson, Willie Croft, Dominic Scelzi, DJ Netto, Kurt Nelson, Jenna Frazier, Mark Barroso, Matt DeMartini
FK ROD ENDS SECOND HEAT (10 laps): Jonathan Allard, Mitchell Faccinto, Jason Statler, Trent Canales, Danny Faria, Jason Chisum, Nathan Rolfe, Vaughn Schott, Burt Foland
SPEEDSHIFT TV/MVP THIRD HEAT (10 laps): Shane Golobic, Kyle Offill, Sean Watts, Ryan Bernal, Colby Copeland, Kenny Allen, Blake Carick, Tim Estenson
KAEDING PERFORMANCE CENTER FOURTH HEAT (10 laps): Bud Kaeding, Justin Sanders, Geoff Ensign, Jeremy Chisum, Brad Furr, Cole Macedo, James Ringo, Craig Stidham.
SUNNYVALLEY BACON DASH (6 laps): Jonathan Allard, Bill Aton, Shane Golobic, Willie Croft, Mitchell Faccinto, Bud Kaeding.
WILLIAMS ROOFING DASH FOR CASH (4 laps): Sean Watts, Dominic Scelzi, Kenny Allen, Geoff Ensign
SAFECRAFT SAFETY EQUIPMENT SEMI (12 laps): Cole Macedo, Nathan Rolfe, Kenny Allen, James Ringo, Matt DeMartini, Blake Carrick, Vaughn Schott, Mark Barroso, Craig Stidham, Burt Foland, Tim Estenson, Jason Chisum, Jenna Frazier, Kurt Nelson.