The photos from the final race of the 2010-2011 season are now on-line and available for viewing .. .click here
First off, I want to wish everyone a wonderful holiday season.
There was a generous raffle for a 1/10th scale remote control sprint car as well other special perks. During the intermission Brandon and his friends put on an excellent demonstration of thier expertise with RC cars and trucks, plus an incredible helicopter flying exhibition, all while the infield was set ablaze with an obstacle course of destruction. There is a huge cross-over of kart racers and fans with RC enthusiasts, especially when it comes to scale model sprint cars. Ranging in size from 1/25 up to nearly 1/3 scale there a lot of options for people to choose from. "A Main Hobbies" brought both electric powered and traditional RC fuel models for display and had experts on hand to answer any questions people had.
This is was the last race before the holiday break. Traditionally it has been a race that sees alumni racers from across the country gravitate back to their roots to relive the excitement of the sport and reunite with fellow competitors and friends. There were three standout luminaries who came out to race. Michael Morrison and Mackena Bell, both who have followed their dreams and relocated to the heart of US racing world: North Carolina, and current King of California Sprint Car Champion Kyle Larson signed in for a night of racing. Michael Morrison is currently the gas man for the NASCAR Sprint Cup team of Kevin Harvick. Mackena Bell is now not only a Pro NASCAR racer but also a TV star. She was one of the top finishers in the BET Network reality racing show "Changing Lanes." Her skills in all sorts of asphalt cars was spotlighted show after show, and her appearances were sprinkled with humor and insights into the heart of a racer. It seems that her roots in dirt racing are firmly planted as she was able just fall right back into being a top contender in the Open Division. David Ing, and Ing Construction provided the beautiful kart which she wheeled to several top finishes thru the night.
Larson, who has pursued dirt racing at the highest level competing in the Golden State Challenge and racing with the World of Outlaws on a regular basis, transferred from the C Main and finished 2nd in the B Main but had mechanical problems which DNF'd him out of a A Main finish. The next day Larson competed in the Tony Hunt "Race for a Cause" at RPM indoor kart track were he finished won round one, and finished second in round two.
On a personal note, I never lose my awe for the skills of all these drivers – from the Beginner Box drivers to the Open and Sportsman Divisions. Red Bluff is famed for being one of the toughest tracks to tame. Its small size, and wheel-to-wheel racing requires a finesse which when mastered allows the drivers to compete in just about any type of racing more successfully. Each race I stand and watch the races trying to guess which drivers will be the future "Kings of California", or USAC Champion, or even the next NASCAR Cup Champion. It's inevitable, the racers you are watching now will be the superstars of the future, and they deserve due respect.
Including these stars, 43 total kart stars signed into run the Open Class for the last race of 2010. The Open Division roster reads like a who's who of sprint, midget and asphalt racing. Sprint car driver Tyler Wolf set the fast time of the night with an 8.243 second lap. Keith Bloom, who spent his summer back east racing Sprints in the heartland took second fast time, and NASCAR and local champion Steven Gannon took third.
Five heats were stacked up to create the mains. Daddy-to-be, Michael Tarter took the win in Heat One over Ryan Foster (another NASCAR driver). Heat Two saw Sean "The Shark" Becker win over fellow Sprint Car racer, Keith Bloom Jr. Sean is one of the most successful RB Outlaw who has raced consistently with the World of Outlaws, won numerous championships including being crowned King of California preceding Larson. Brent Hamilton a long time RB Outlaw beat Steven Gannon to the flag in Heat Three. Casey McClain, who has been racing Red Bluff since before he could walk practically, won Heat Four while John Michael Bunch – another Sprint Car driver took Heat Five honors ahead of Tyler Taylor who was sitting in for David Tarter for the night.
Trophy Dashes in the Open Division are always exciting and this week's was no exception. Ryan Foster, who was on a rail all night, won over Bunch. Foster was doing double-duty for this session as he subbed for Jay Salemy.
The scramble to run the Feature Event started with a D Main event. Andrew Cumpton, Rico Abreu ( who is making his Chili Bowl debut early next month, Derek O'Bannon (Nashville recording artist), Jake Park (College Student), Seth Nunes (Oregon Sprint star) and Brandon Aldred (sponsor of the night's events) all transferred up to the C Main. You can see by my parenthetical asides that we have some very talented folks here. C Main action saw Daniel Becker just drive away from the rest of the pack to take the win. Tagging in next were Kyle Larson and Justin Burton. As the alphabet counts backwards the action gets more intense. This time it was Todd Boyd who bested the field. Last year's Sportsman champion held off Mackena Bell as she wheeled around some of the top talent in the sport. For A Main we were treated to a battle of the titans. Ryan Foster held sway for the race but Steven Gannon dogged him all the way. These two drivers were separated by only a single point going into the last race of last year's season, when Foster bested him to become Open Division Champion. Gannon took the bridesmaid spot with Keith Bloom, Cameron Bartlett and John Michael Bunch rounding out the top five.
Let's go from the veterans to the rookies. Like I mentioned before, without a doubt there are some future champions and stars wheeling around in the Beginner Box Stock division right now. The kart counts for this division have remained constant all season, which is simply fantastic. It shows incredible dedication to the sport, not only by the drivers but by the parents and crew as well. Just another one of the life lessons that these youngster will take with them into maturity. One of the contenders for the future title of star is Colton Raudman, son of NASCAR driver Craig Raudman, started his night out right by setting fast time with a 10.324 second lap. Young female star Adrianna Allen clocked in second fast and Gavin Cate third quick.
Four heat races based on the qualifying times were played out early in the day. Raudman continued his streak by winning Heat One over Liam Hawkins. Blake Carrick in the 21B high-stylin' kart won the second heat over Carter Able. New-comer to Red Bluff, Jodie Robinson, held off current points leader Gavin Cate to take her heat race win. Jodie comes from a racing family. Father, Dave, is a Sprint Car champion and older brother Ryan is an RB Champion and top seed at all the other kart tracks on the west coast. And Dawson Hammes took the final heat race win over Jayden "The Real Deal" Bartlett.
The alphabet soup started with a C Main for the division. Long-tow sensation Tanner Holmes held off a super hard-charging Savannah Cardenas to take the win in the C Main. Also transferring to the B were Carsen Perkins and Skyler Cole. Lexi Raudman also from the racing-famed family of Raudmans, won the B Main ahead of Adrianna Allen and Kyle Pendergrass. In the Trophy Dash Tanner Holmes continued his streak by winning another beautiful piece of hardware. The A Main proved that these youngsters are simply amazing ! Colton Raudman held off the pack for the win, but saw a mirror full of Gavin Cate who was running a heated battle with Lexi Raudman and Kyle Pendergrass. Again, keep an eye on these youngsters they will be the stars of the future.
But let's not under estimate the Box Stock drivers. Consistently they put on the best races of the night. With the implementation of the Subaru motor requirements that tries to keep a cap on racing costs, this class has continued to be strong in numbers and big on talent. This pas race Colton Abel in his beautiful #81 kart took the fastest lap in qualifying with a 9.5778 second circuit. The second and third top times went to Ren Eberhart and Michael Kofoid. With 22 karts showing up for the division three heat races were lined out to set up the feature events of the night. Michael "Lightening" Call took the win in Heat One over Angelo Cornet. Heat Two saw Blake Carrick's older brother, Tanner, win over Ren Eberhart – winner of last weeks Gary Jacob Memorial Box Stock Division Feature event. And for Heat Three the 7D$ kart of Derek Stone held off rookie Brad Dolin for the win. Trophy Dash action featured Ryan "The Rhino" Williams regain his footing and claim a wide-berth lead to win the bling. Just in time for Christmas Miss Chelsea Blevins - descended from the famed Blevin's racing family – picked up her first Feature Event win in her Rookie season in the Box Stock. Holding off the seasoned Tyler Rodgers and the #00 kart of Steel Powell to win Heat Two. Holding to the tradition set by Ryan Foster, Ryan Williams continued his streak by following up his Trophy Dash win with a victory in A Main Event.
Ah, the roar of the 250cc karts. There's a sound which inspires as much awe as the talent of the drivers wheeling them around our little bullring. These powerhouse motors are perfect for the conditions at Red Bluff and have several times in the past set faster qualifying laps than the 500 cc Open karts. For the final race of 2010 Logan Seavey, who ran the entire summer season at Cycleland, took the fast time with an 8.378 second lap. Second and third quick went to Chase Majdic and Tyler Seavey. With a great field of 24 karts three heat races were run with another Raudman, this time Chase, winning Heat One. Amanda Moore who is running her first full season at the RB facility took Heat Two win over Mr. Majdic. Heat Three saw Tyler Seavey tag in ahead of longtime competitor and buddy Morgan Sandhagen. There was a happy birthday celebration for Garret Gramps out back in the pits and on the track as he took the wheel of the #86G kart on loan from the Cowell stables for his first run of the season at the bullring – Happy Birthday Garret !
B Main saw Brandon White – 2010 USAC Western Pavement Focus Young Guns Midget champion, off to a strong start which he held till the flag dropped. Trophy Dash time and Amanda Moore continued her night with her first Trophy Dash win at the Bluff. And, it didn't stop there. Again following the trend of the night, the winner of the Trophy Dash went on to champion the Feature Event. Miss Moore pulled the rest of the field behind her from the drop of the green. Seasoned track runner Tyler Seavey tagged her every move – looking at all the angles in an attempt to find the slightest bobble in the lead to make a charge to the front. He did end up second for his efforts and was followed up by female phenom, Morgan Sandhagen.
Which brings us to the Sportsman Division. While light on karts was full of action. Sitting in for Jay Salemy Ryan Foster took the #14 Glen Haven Beach Resort kart round the track faster than anyone else with a quick 8.410 second lap. Beau Perkins and Brandon Williams rounded out the top three slots. Heat One starred Andy Cumpton who held off the attempts of Mr. Foster to take the flag first. In Heat Two RB Outlaw Veteran and former Sprint Car driver Beau Perkins, who is running this division for the first time this season took the win over Grass Valley native Kevin Gaines. The Trophy Dash once again saw Brandon Mansfield in the winner circle. Last week's Gary Jacob Memorial Race Sportsman Division winner. But victory was not to be his in the Feature event of the night. Having led for the entire race, a hard charge by Foster coincided with a wide-taken corner by Mansfield which added up to disaster as the #89 lost 4 spots trying to gather it back up. Foster charged thru the contact and took the checkered flag.
Again, I'd like to just point out again what an amazing sport this is, and what a tremendous amount of talent race here each week. Please help support these drivers and the sport. Help out with a driver sponsorship, or by patronizing companies that do support the sport – such as A Main Hobbies, who we owe a special thanks to ! Keep in mind we still want to build our Video Library here on the site – cuz it is all about Video on the internet – and nothing shows this sport off better than a video. If you have video – post it to YouTube, then send Jack Waterman the link and I will post it to the RB Outlaw's video gallery – let's get these drivers' names out there !!
Thank you and have a FANTASTIC Christmas, and Holidays !