Baldiviez wins thrilling race at Cocopah Speedway
Randy Hoeft @ YumaSunSports
Photos by Bobby McMorris
Deja vu all over again?
For the second Saturday night in a row, the conclusion of an IMCA Stock Car Division main event at Cocopah Speedway featured an exciting race to the checkered flag. But this time there was no wild crash as there was during last week’s Turkey Classic.
No, this time Yuma’s Manny Baldiviez edged Yuma’s Jimmy Davy by inches at the finish line to take Saturday night’s win in Round 12 of the 2016 Cocopah Speedway Racing Series.
Ironically, Davy was also involved in the thrilling Turkey Classic finish, when a collision resulted in the car of Minnesota’s Andrew Altenburg flipping over. Davy got the win that night when Altenburg was disqualified for rough driving.
Even more ironic, is the car Davy was driving Saturday night belongs to another Yuma driver, Joe Haines, who was suspended for the remainder of the season for his actions following that crash during the Turkey Classic. Davy’s car sustained too much damage to be ready for Saturday night’s show, and because he is in the title hunt, Haines loaned him his car.
In other racing action Saturday night, Cody Laney, from Torrance, Calif., won the IMCA Modified Division feature event, Yuma’s James Dupre won the IMCA Sport Modified Division feature event and Yuma’s Adolfo Noriega won the IMCA Hobby Stock Division feature event.
Laney was also on hand for the Turkey Classic, but settled for second place on the first night and ran ninth the second night.
Saturday, Laney made up for those shortcomings, beating Brawley’s Russell Allen, the Cocopah Speedway racing series point leader, to the finish line in the feature event. Allen ran second, followed by Buckeye’s Cole Petersen in third, Yuma’s Brett Simala in fourth and Lakeside, Calif., driver Mitchell Niemi in fifth.
The night saw only 10 Modifieds show up for the show. Therefore, the Sport Modifieds were allowed to tag the feature event field, in which Noriega drove his car to a sixth-place finish, highest among the “B” Modifieds.
In the Stock Car finale finishing third behind Baldiviez, the series point leader, and Davy, was Yuma’s Joey Essary, with Phoenix’s George Fronsman in fourth and Yuma’s Craig Ebers, driving his Hobby Stock, in fifth.
Finishing second behind Dupre in the Sport Modified feature was Imperial’s Corey Clayton, with Yuma’s Kyle Smith running third, Yuma’s Kent Rosevear in fourth and Somerton’s Joshua Cordova in fifth.
Rosevear was driving the car owned by El Centro’s Ron Pegues.
In the Hobby Stock feature, Ebers ran second behind Noriega, series point leader Jim Robinson, from Yuma, was third, Yuma’s Jason Beshears was fourth and Somerton’s Francisco Cordova was fifth.
The next race in the 2016 Cocopah Speedway Racing Series is the season finale on Dec. 17.