Monday, April 30, 2012

K&N Pro Series West Back To Stockton

News &Notes: K&N West Back To Stockton

Series Returns To Historic California Short Track
By Kevin W. Green, NASCAR
April 30, 2012 - 2:12pm
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Eric Holmes, a three-time champion in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West, grew up watching his father compete at Stockton (Calif.) 99 Speedway. Naturally, the closure of the historic short-track at the end of the 2006 season was a very big disappointment to Holmes, who hails from nearby Escalon, Calif.

Plans to replace the high-banked quarter-mile oval with homes fell through, however, and the track re-opened in 2009. This week marks the return of the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West to Stockton 99 Speedway, with the Pick-N-Pull Self-Service Auto & Truck Dismantlers150 on Saturday, May 5.

Now Holmes, who scored 13 of his 16 career series wins on tracks under a half-mile in length, wants to finally notch a win at his home track.

“The last time we ran there, was my first (full) year in 2006,” Holmes said. “I came close to winning it, just had to beat Mike David. We won the pole and finished second to him. I’ve won a lot of late model races there and modified races and Southwest Tour races, but not a NASCAR K&N race.”

Getting that win and adding Stockton 99 Speedway to the list of tracks where he has won in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West is “very important,” Holmes said.

“Back in December, I went to their banquet to help them announce that we were having the event,” he said of the track’s announcement. “I told them, ‘you guys are doing this just for me, so I can get a shot at winning one here.’ We’ve won at a lot of short tracks on the West Coast in the K&N cars. We definitely have got to get one at our home track at Stockton. I’m glad I get the opportunity.”

Holmes drives the No. 20 NAPA Toyota for Bill McAnally Racing – a team that won at Stockton in 2003 and 2004. He joined the team several years later, at the beginning of the 2008 season.
Competing so close to home, he also gets a lot of support from the fans that turn out at Stockton.

“It’s nice, because everybody comes out to watch – friends and family, some of our customers and employees,” said Holmes, who runs a nearby NAPA Auto Parts Store. “We kind of get that opportunity in Roseville, but this is an hour and a half closer to my home and 15 minutes from Escalon. It’s definitely fun, because everybody comes out. And being in May, it will be great weather and a great weekend. We’re looking forward to it.”

Race: Pick-N-Pull Self-Service Auto & Truck Dismantlers 150
Place: Stockton 99 Speedway
Date: Saturday, May 5
Time: 8:30 p.m. PT
TV Schedule: SPEED, May 17, 3 p.m. ET
Radio: NASCAR Home, Live
Track Layout: .25-mile paved oval
2011 Winner: Event not held
2011 Polesitter: Event not held
Event Schedule: Saturday: Practice 12:30-1:15 p.m., 1:45–2:15 p.m., Qualifying 5 p.m.
Track PR Contact: David Holman, (209) 351-3202
NASCAR IMC Contact: Kevin W. Green (661) 392-8543


Fast Facts

Race: This event is the fourth of 15 events on the 2012 schedule for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West. The series visited Stockton 99 Speedway 21 times between 1966 and 2006.

Procedure: The starting field is 24 cars, including provisionals. The first 20 cars will qualify through two-lap time trials. The remaining four spots will be awarded through the provisional process. The race will be 150 laps (37.5 miles).

Track: Stockton 99 Speedway is a .25-mile paved oval with blended banking of up to 14 degrees in Turn 1 and Turn 2 and up to 17 degrees in Turn 3 and Turn 4.

Records: Qualifying: Mike Duncan, May 29, 2004, 63.861 mph, 14.093 sec.; Race: Dick Bown, May 13, 1972, 56.250 mph, 40 minutes. (150 laps)

Race Notes

Tight Championship Battle: After three events this season, series veteran David Mayhew leads the championship standings by one point over second-year driver Dylan Kwasniewski. Defending series champion Greg Pursley is four points out of the lead, with Derek Thorn seven points out of first. Three-time series champion Eric Holmes is fifth in the standings, eight points behind Mayhew.

Three Races, Three Different Winners: The first three races have produced three different winners – David Mayhew at Phoenix, Derek Thorn at Havasu and Greg Pursley at Miller.

Back-To-Back Events: The series has back-to-back events this week, with the Stockton race following seven days after the race at Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele. Utah.

Friday Practice: Teams will have an opportunity to get some extra track time at Stockton 99 Speedway with a special practice session the track is holding on Friday, May 4.

Series Experience At Stockton: Only five of the drivers entered at Stockton competed there in past series events. Jack Sellers leads the way with eight starts. Daryl Harr has five starts there; while his father, Carl, has four. Eric Holmes has two starts and Greg Pursley has one.

Back In Action: Jessica Brunelli is set to make her first series start of the year at Stockton. The 19-year-old driver from Hayward, Calif., competed in four series races last year. She also raced late models in 2010 and 2011, while living in North Carolina and participating in NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity program.

Live Radio Coverage: Live radio coverage of this event will be carried on, by the team at Speed51. Fans can access the live race audio stream by going to on Saturday and clicking on play under the radio logo on the right side of the page.

Speedway Assists Band In Raising Funds: Stockton 99 Speedway is helping the Pitman High School “Marching Pride” band from Turlock, Calif., raise funds for its trip to Washington D.C. to march in the Fourth of July parade. Band members will be selling souvenir programs at the race and will receive a portion of the proceeds from the sales. The speedway is also donating a portion of the proceeds from the sales of fountain drinks to the band.

Final Notes From Miller

Third Consecutive MMP Win For Pursley: Greg Pursley rallied back from a flat tire to capture his third straight Miller Motorsports Park win in the Utah Grand Prix on Saturday in Tooele, Utah. In addition to picking up his 10th career series win, Pursley also garnered his 12th career series pole in winning the Coors Light Pole Award at MMP.

First Podium Finish: In only his second series race, rookie Austin Dyne finished third after leading for much of the race at Miller. The 20-year-old from Malibu, Calif., led laps 26-48.

Career Best Mark: Scott Ivie came away from Utah with a career series best finish, crossing the finish line sixth. His best previous mark was 11th at MMP in 2009.

Top 10 First Time Out: Series newcomer Kyle Heckman finished seventh at Miller to notch a top-10 finish in his first series start.

Up Next: East-West Combination Race at IowaNext on the 2012 schedule will be the annual NASCAR K&N Pro Series East-West combination race at Iowa Speedway on May 19.

It is the first of two East-West combination races at the Newton, Iowa track this year. It will mark the sixth year for the East-West drivers to face off on the .875-mile high-banked track.

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