(PETERSEN MEDIA- Aptos, CA, CA)- Friday night in Watsonville, CA, Kyle Hirst used a lap 14 restart to take the lead from Michael Kofoid during the opening night of the 7th Annual Howard Kaeding Classic presented by Al’s Roofing Supply and went on to score his second consecutive win during the Civil War Series presented by Flowmaster portion of the marquee weekend.
DJ Netto and Kofoid would lead the field to green with Kofoid getting the early jump. Just as he has been on so many occasions in 2017, Kofoid was extremely strong as he paced an extremely deep field around the ¼ mile facility nestled in the heart of Santa Cruz County.
While Kofoid led early, Netto and Kyle Hirst would give chase on a track that extremely fast in the early stages of the 30-lap affair as a refreshing marine layer rolled in throughout the night and kept moisture in the surface. Getting into traffic in a matter of laps, Kofoid, Netto, Hirst, and Justin Sanders would battle until the race’s first stoppage came on the 10th circuit.
With a red coming for Brad Furr on the ensuing restart, which he would climb from with no issues, the action would pick back up on another restart as Hirst was able to get by Netto and overtake the second spot as Kofoid continued to lead until his pace was slowed again on the 14th lap.
After two failed restart attempts due to other cars getting out of shape, the third time would be the charm and it would play a pivotal part in the outcome of the race. As Kofoid led the field into turn one and two, Hirst was able to stick on his back bumper as they raced down the back stretch.
Heading into turns three and four, Hirst would take advantage of an opening and it some extremely close quarters racing would grab the lead from Kofoid as Netto and Sanders would move into second and third.
Out in front, Hirst would be extremely good as he would pull out to a sizeable lead and go on to pick up his 11th career series win, and second of the 2017 season.
Behind the leader, things would be exciting as Kofoid would bounce back and fight back to finish second as DJ Netto took the final spot one podium with Sanders finishing fourth and Cory Eliason finishing fifth.
“(Michael) Kofoid and I raced really hard in the Dash, and then we raced really hard in the feature, and I was able to use a restart and grab the win,” Kyle Hirst said. “The kid is a helluva driver and I know we will continue to battle for a lot more races to come. Thanks to this entire Roth Motorsports team for their hard work, as well as to Dennis and Teresa Roth for allowing me to do what I love.”
Shane Golobic finished sixth, Bud Kaeding Seventh, Jonathan Allard came home eighth, Cole Macedo ninth, and Jerry Bonnema rounded out the Top-10.
The night would be eventful for the Top-Two Civil War Series presented by Flowmaster Championship contenders. Andy Forsberg who checked in on Friday with a 76 point lead would flip violently in his heat race and be forced to pull out a back up car to tag the back of the ‘B’. While racing up to second in the semi, mechanical issues would end his night and he would be scored 11th in the semi.
Second in points, Geoff Ensign, would time in with quick time, fail to get out of his heat race, cut a tire while leading the B, and race his way back to finish 5th in the semi, and 12th in the feature.
With just two races left in the year, things have tightened up between the two and should be an exciting battle to follow.
A total of 29 cars checked in on Friday night for the opening night of the 7th Annual Howard Kaeding Classic pres. by Al’s Roofing Supply.
Geoff Ensign and Shane Golobic would turn in identical fast times of 11.670 seconds, but Ensign would get the nod as he won the tie breaker by being the first car out between the two.
Four heat races would be ran with wins going to Hirst, Willie Croft, Gio Scelzi, and Justin Sanders, while DJ Netto would win a very eventful Dash to earn the pole for the feature event.
Australian pilot Marcus Dumesny would win the 12-lap B Main event and transfer into the feature event along with Brad Furr, Jerry Bonnema, Jason Chisum, Geoff Ensign, and Burt Foland.
2017 Civil War Series presented by Flowmaster Schedule
8/12 Ocean Speedway- Johnny Key Classic $5000 to win!
9/6 Silver Dollar Speedway- Gold Cup
ON TAP: The Civil War Series presented by Flowmaster will be back in action in just less than one month as the series returns to Ocean Speedway on August 12th for the $5000-to-win Johnny Key Classic.
2017 WINNERS: Shane Golobic (March 11th Silver Dollar Speedway), Andy Forsberg (March 31st Silver Dollar Speedway), Andy Forsberg (May 27th Marysville Raceway), Kyle Hirst (May 28th Silver Dollar Speedway), Andy Forsberg (July 1st Marysville Raceway), Kyle Hirst (July 14th Ocean Speedway).
STAY CONNECTED: Keep up with the Civil War Series Presented By Flowmaster, and find complete results and point standings by clicking over to www.racepmg.com, ‘Liking’ www.facebook.com/civilwarsprints, or following us on twitter at www.twitter.com/civilwarsprints. For more information on Flowmaster, please visit www.flowmastermufflers.com.
CIVIL WAR SERIES PRESENTED BY FLOWMASTER- Founded in 1991 as the North-South Series, the Civil War Sprint Car Series was born in 1993 giving 360ci Sprint Cars in California a sanctioning body. What started as just a handful of races at three different tracks has evolved into quite the series. In 2017, the Civil War Sprint Car Series will host 9 events at 4 different tracks around California.