Latemodels Shootout comes to town

Latemodels Shootout comes to town

RANDY HOEFT – SPECIALIZED CONTENT EDITOR

Don’t mistake the Cocopah Speedway pit for a new winter visitor RV  park.
But it might look that way Saturday night when the high-powered  West Coast Lademodels Shootout rolls into the track and a few of the haulers are  sporting Oregon and Washington license plates.
Greg Burgess, director of  operations at the Somerton oval, confirmed this week that at least two entries  in what is expected to be a large field of cars will be driven by Jerry Schram,  of Vancouver, Wash., and Greg Walters, from Banks, Ore.
Along with those  two drivers, who are not regulars in the West Coast Latemodels Shootout series,  are Billy Workman Jr., from Canby, Ore., Rob Mayer, from Bend, Ore., and Mark  Carrell, from Redmond, Ore.
Throw in Mike Balcean, from Winnipeg,  Manitoba, Canada, and Burgess can host his own welcome back, winter visitor  bash.
But those drivers, along with a strong field of Shootout regulars  from California, are not headed to Cocopah Speedway for the warm weather. No,  each of them is hoping to take home the $2,000 check that goes to the winner.  Each driver is also guaranteed $400 just to start the feature event.
The  night’s program will begin with the first green flag at 7.
Also appearing  on the card are the 2011-2012 Cocopah Speedway Racing Series Factory Stock  Division cars and a return appearance by the West Coast Vintage  Racers.
The racing format for the Shootout series will include a two-lap  qualifying session for each car, and heat race winners placed in the trophy  dash. The trophy dash outcome will determine the first two or three rows for the  feature event, with the remainder of the feature event lineup determined by heat  race finishes and, if needed, a B Main event.
Leading the Shootout series  to Cocopah Speedway is the 2011 defending champion and current point leader,  Clay Daly, from Watsonville, Calif. He is one of five different drivers who have  each won a feature event in 2012.
The other feature event winners are Don  Shaw, from Ham Lake, Minn., John Lowrey, from Bakersfield, Calif., Bobby Hogge  IV, from Salinas, Calif., and Jeff Decker, from Morgan Hill,  Calif.
Decker won the last feature event on the schedule, the Maselli & Sons Classic at Petaluma Speedway in Petaluma, Calif., on Sept.  8.
Daly is a confirmed entry for the Shootout show at Cocopah Speedway,  along with Tony Toste, from Pismo Beach, Calif., who is No. 2 in the standings;  Jason Papich, from Santa Maria, Calif., No. 3 in the standings; Rob Sanders,  from Bakersfield, Calif., No. 4 in the standings; and Steve Drake, from San Luis  Obispo, Calif., No. 5 in the standings.
Also confirmed are Nick Bartels,  from El Segundo, Calif., Bill Bartels, from Marina del Rey, Calif., Mike Kirby,  from Torrance, Calif., Dino Napier, from Corona, Calif., Tommy Malcolm, from  Corona, Calif., and the only woman driver in the series, Carla Laney, from  Torrance, Calif.
The Cocopah Speedway Racing Series Factory Stocks will  be led onto the track by the current series point leader, Jimmy Davy, from  Yuma.
Davy has the 2011-2012 driving championship locked up by virtue of  his 70-point lead over his nearest challenger, Amy Teague, from  Brawley.
Davy, however, appears to have gone into a defensive mode,  having not won a feature event since March 24, when he strung together three  wins in a row. He has a series leading five wins, but while he once was able to  dominate a race, the second-year driver now hangs around near mid  pack.
Also in the field will be Yuma’s Steve Anthony, who has notched two  feature event wins, and Rookie of the Year candidate Jordan White, from Yuma,  who has one win to his credit.
SPARE PARTS: Cocopah Speedway is located  at U.S. 95 and County 15th Street; general admission gates open at 5 p.m.;  special event tickets are: adults – $15; adult military with ID – $13; seniors  (55 and older) – $13; children 12 years old and younger – free; family pass – $30; Skybox – $30; Fans can get live racing lineups during the races and results  afterward by going to www.cocopahlive.com; Fans can all access live in-race  scoring and lap times by going to mylaps.com. For more information call 344-1563  or go to www.cocopahspeedway.com.

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