It didn’t take long for Rico Abreu to become a repeat winner with the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by MAVTV American Real. Staging the Abreu Vineyards No. 24 third in the night’s Protect the Harvest A-Feature, the Rutherford, Calif. driver worked past race long leader Christopher Bell on Lap 27 to pocket $10,000 at the Cocopah Speedway in Yuma, Ariz.
Staying true to form, the desert’s ten-percent chance of rain yielded a nearly two hour delay in the start of Saturday’s Lucas Oil ASCS presented by MAVTV American Real events, but produced a nearly perfect racing surface as the cushion worked to within inches of the wall.
Taking off from the pole, Bell worked into slower traffic on Lap 7. Giving Abreu the chance to close the gap, he would be unable to mount a charge as the Berryman Motorsports No. 31B slipped quickly through the back markers.
Putting several slower cars between he and Abreu, the caution displayed for third running Mason Moore on Lap 15 to bring the field to a single file restart. With a pair of lapped cars between Christopher and Rico, the difference opened quickly as Bell stuck to the cushion before finally skipping through the high line and tagging the wall on Lap 26.
“The track just got so finesse there at the end, it was just right around the wall and it was really demanding on the cushion,” commented Abreu of track conditions. “Bell just made that one mistake and I was right there, so I just raced my own race and when I got to traffic I was just sliding guys, you know really grinding my tires. It was tough driving by those lappers when they were running side-by-side but other than that, Paul Silva gave me a great racecar.”
Running Abreu down after slapping the wall, Bell pulled to within two car lengths but would have to settle for the second podium step.
“I just didn’t get the job done those last five laps. I kept running in a little high into one and ended up pushing the nose into the fence,” said a frustrated Christopher Bell. “I just have to say hats off to my crew, they did an awesome job working the rain and stuff, and we got an awesome racetrack.”
After the caution waved at the midway point, the third spot fell into the hands of Brian Brown.
Challenged by Bryan Clauson on several occasions after the restart, Brown was able to hold onto the final podium step, “We just weren’t good enough this weekend and honestly, we just got beat by some better cars. Congrats to Rico on both nights and Christopher Bell ran good both nights and really there were three or four guys that were really good. We were better than we were last time we were here, so hopefully when we come back here in November, we’ll be a little bit better.”
Danny Lasoski worked to fourth from sixteenth with the pass on Clauson on the final lap to earn the KSE Hard Charger of the Night. Clauson’s fifth place finish is his first top-five in series history.
Jason Johnson crossed sixth with Roger Crockett seventh. Johnny Herrera, Sam Hafertepe, Jr., and fourteenth starting Seth Bergman completed the top five.
Five SpeedMart Heat Races were contested with Bryan Clauson, Mason Moore, Jason Johnson, Brandon Hahn, and Craig Stidham earning wins. Smiley’s Racing Products B-Features went to Logan Forler and James Mosher.
The Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by MAVTV American Real competes next at the Devil’s Bowl Speedway on March 21 and 22 with the 41st Spring Nationals. Complete news, results, and schedule for the American Sprint Car Series can be found at www.ascsracing.com
Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by MAVTV American Real
Cocopah Cup Challenge II – Night 2
Cocopah Speedway – Somerton, Ariz.
Saturday, March 1, 2014
Car Count: 42
Heat Races presented by SpeedMart – 8 Laps, winners plus top 7 in passing points to A-Feature.
Heat 1 (8 Laps): 1. 82C-Bryan Clauson; 2. 0-Glenn Styres; 3. 17W-Cole Wood; 4. 05-Brad Loyet; 5. 17-Blake Hahn; 6. 94-Jeff Swindell; 7. 9R-Reece Goetz; 8. 22X-Mike Rux Jr
Heat 2 (8 Laps): 1. 22-Mason Moore; 2. 23-Seth Bergman; 3. 01-Kaylene Verville; 4. 8-Bob Ream Jr; 5. 57X-James Aragon; 6. 9-Ryan Linder; 7. 9P-Parker Price-Miller; 8. 90-Lance Norick
Heat 3 (8 Laps): 1. 41-Jason Johnson; 2. 45X-Johnny Herrera; 3. 4X-Shawn Petersen; 4. 18-Tony Bruce Jr; 5. 33V-Henry VanDam; 6. 94M-Nick Parker; 7. (DNF) 20Z-Rick Ziehl; DNS 23N-Travis Jacobson
Heat 4 (8 Laps): 1. 29-Brandon Hahn; 2. 33L-Danny Lasoski; 3. 95-Matt Covington; 4. 77X-Wayne Johnson; 5. 12-James Mosher; 6. 41W-Joshua Williams; 7. (DNF) 33-Rick Eckert
Heat 5 (8 Laps): 1. 3-Craig Stidham; 2. 82-Sam Hafertepe Jr; 3. W20-Greg Wilson; 4. 2L-Logan Forler; 5. 11W-Joe Wood Jr; 6. 87-Aaron Reutzel; DNS 8AZ-Jordan Stetson
Smiley’s Racing Products B-Features – Top 3 advance to the A-Feature.
B Feature 1 (12 Laps): 1. 2L-Logan Forler; 2. W20-Greg Wilson; 3. 18-Tony Bruce Jr; 4. 8-Bob Ream Jr; 5. 9-Ryan Linder; 6. 01-Kaylene Verville; 7. 9R-Reece Goetz; 8. 57X-James Aragon; 9. 94M-Nick Parker; 10. (DNF) 87-Aaron Reutzel; 11. (DNF) 33-Rick Eckert; DNS 20Z-Rick Ziehl; DNS 8AZ-Jordan Stetson
B Feature 2 (12 Laps): 1. 12-James Mosher; 2. 17-Blake Hahn; 3. 17W-Cole Wood; 4. 94-Jeff Swindell; 5. 4X-Shawn Petersen; 6. 33V-Henry VanDam; 7. 11W-Joe Wood Jr; 8. 9P-Parker Price-Miller; 9. 41W-Joshua Williams; 10. (DNF) 77X-Wayne Johnson; DNS 90-Lance Norick; DNS 22X-Mike Rux Jr; DNS 23N-Travis Jacobson
Protect the Harvest A-Feature – 30 laps, $10,000 to win.
A Feature (30 Laps): 1. 24-Rico Abreu; 2. 31B-Christopher Bell; 3. 21-Brian Brown; 4. 33L-Danny Lasoski; 5. 82C-Bryan Clauson; 6. 41-Jason Johnson; 7. 11-Roger Crockett; 8. 45X-Johnny Herrera; 9. 82-Sam Hafertepe Jr; 10. 23-Seth Bergman; 11. 3-Craig Stidham; 12. 05-Brad Loyet; 13. 17-Blake Hahn; 14. 2L-Logan Forler; 15. 0-Glenn Styres; 16. 95-Matt Covington; 17. 18-Tony Bruce Jr; 18. 29-Brandon Hahn; 19. 17W-Cole Wood; 20. W20-Greg Wilson; 21. 9R-Reece Goetz; 22. 94-Jeff Swindell; 23. 12-James Mosher; 24. (DNF) 22-Mason Moore; 25. (DNF) 87-Aaron Reutzel
Lap Leader(s): Christopher Bell (1-26), Rico Abreu (27-30)
KSE Hard Charger: Danny Lasoski +12
Hawk Performance Fastest Lap: Brian Brown – 15.667 seconds
CSI Rebound: Mason Moore
Provisional(s): Jeff Swindell (P1), Aaron Retuzel (PP), Reece Gotez (PP)
2014 A-Feature Winner(s): Rico Abreu-2
2014 Lucas Oil ASCS Driver Standings (Top 10): 1. Rico Abreu 300; 2. Christopher Bell 284; 3. Brian Brown 265; 4. Roger Crockett 254; 5. Jason Johnson 241; 6. Bryan Clauson 238; 7. Johnny Herrera 238; 8. Brad Loyet 321; 9. Sam Hafertepe, Jr. 219; 10. Seth Bergman 218;
The 2014 season marks the twenty-third year of sanctioning Sprint Car racing for the American Sprint Car Series, which brings the best of Sprint Car racing to dozens of different tracks throughout the nation. Anchored by the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series, ASCS also consists of ten different Regions throughout the nation.
Lucas Oil Products is the title sponsor of the American Sprint Car Series. More information can be found on Lucas Oil Products at www.lucasoil.com. MAVTV is the presenting sponsor of the American Sprint Car Series. Log onto www.mavtv.com for information regarding availability and listings in your area.
Associate sponsors for the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by MAVTV include: Hoosier Racing Tire and Brodix.
Team Lucas Sponsors for the American Sprint Car Series consist of Protect the Harvest, iON Camera, Smokey Mountain Moonshine, C&R Radiator, Hawk Performance Products, Geico, E3 Spark Plugs, and General Tire.
Product and Contingency Sponsorship provided by: K&N Filters, KSE Racing Products, SpeedMart, Competition Suspension, Engler Machine and Tool, FSR Radiator and Racing Products, Schoenfeld Headers, Driverwebsites.com, Weld Wheels, Saldana Racing Products, Maxwell Industries, Print Place, Simpson, The Joie of Seating, Wesmar Racing Engines, Hinchman Indy Racewear, Rod End Supply, Smiley’s Racing Products, Speedway Motors, and Hilborn Injection Systems.
Additional information regarding the American Sprint Car Series is available at www.ascsracing.com as well as Twitter (@LucasOilASCS) and Facebook. News and information can also be sent to you with the ASCS E-News by texting ASCS to 22828 with any mobile device.
by Bryan Hulbert