CANYON’S USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR “HALL OF FAME CLASSIC” STARTS FRIDAYsouthwest
Lance Jennings, SEPTEMBER 27, 2017… After a break in the schedule, the Sands Chevrolet USAC SouthWest Sprint Cars will invade Peoria, Arizona’s Canyon Speedway Park for two nights of action. Promoted by Doug Gabbard, the annual “Sands Chevrolet Hall of Fame Classic” starts this Friday, September 29th, and will pay $2,000-to-win and $225 to start the main events. In addition, the Napa Sprint Cars, Modlites, Power 600 Micro Sprints, and AVRA Vintage Cars will share the spotlight. The spectator gates will open at 5:00pm with racing at 7:30pm both days. For more event information, visit www.canyonspeedwaypark.com or call (602) 258-7223 (RACE).
Since January 26, 2013, Canyon Speedway Park has hosted fifty-four USAC SouthWest Sprint Car events. R.J. Johnson leads all drivers with sixteen Canyon victories followed by Bryan Clauson (8), “Chargin” Charles Davis Jr. (5), Ryan Bernal (4), “The People’s Champion” Dave Darland (4), and Stevie Sussex (4). A complete series win list at Canyon Speedway Park is at the end of this release.
Originally a 410 Non-Winged Sprint Car race sanctioned by SCRA and later with the USAC/CRA and USAC National Series, the “Sands Chevrolet Hall of Fame Classic” has been an Arizona tradition going back to Manzanita Speedway. In 2000, “The Shermanator” Jeremy Sherman won the inaugural event and also claimed victory in 2006. Canyon Speedway Park revived the event in 2011 and it has become one of the most popular dates on the track’s schedule. Now headlined by the USAC SouthWest Sprint Car Series, the winner’s list is at the end of the release.
A special autograph session will be held on Saturday with many Arizona racing legends and Dennis Matousek will serve as Grand Marshall. Wayne Bennet, Al Dean, The Goosic Family, “Fast” Eddy Kennemer, Jimmy Stewart, and Steve Stroud will be inducted into the Arizona Motorsports Hall of Fame. “Mr. Excitement” Terry Belcher, Gary Blum, Larry Clark, Dave Culp, Russell Faucet, Jerry Miller, Bob Ream Sr., “The Shermanator” Jeremy Sherman, Lonnie Sherman, Marty Wilcox, and Eric Wilkins will join the inductees at the autograph session and meet the fans.
After scoring his 50th career USAC SouthWest Sprint Car victory at San Tan Valley on September 9th, R.J. Johnson (Laveen, Arizona) leads the standings by a 101 point advantage. Piloting Bobby Martin’s #51 Martin Family Auto Museum / Pecon Builders Sherman, Johnson has six feature wins, nine heat race victories, three Beaver Stripes Passing Master Awards, one semi-main win, three hard charger awards, sixteen top-10 finishes, and 162 feature laps led. The four-time champion won the USAC/CRA “Hall of Fame Classic” last season and will be looking to add another event trophy to his collection.
“Chargin” Charles Davis Jr. (Buckeye, Arizona) is second in the USAC SouthWest point chase. Racing the Massey Motorsports’ #50 RSS Industries / Rod End Supply RSS, Davis finished seventh at Arizona Speedway on September 9th. At press time, the five-time Arizona champion has five feature wins, eight heat race victories, six Beaver Stripes Passing Master Awards, fifteen top-10 finishes, and 91 feature laps led in the campaign. “Chargin” Charles has nineteen series wins and will have his sights on his second “Hall of Fame Classic” triumph.
Shon Deskins (Waddell, Arizona) ranks third in the chase for the championship. Driving Bill Richards’ #7 Just Racin’ LLC / Spike Chassis entry, Deskins ran sixth in the September 9th feature. As this writing goes to press, the veteran driver has two hard charger awards, fifteen top-10 finishes, and 26 feature laps led in the campaign. With one career USAC SouthWest victory, Shon will be looking to add the “Hall of Fame Classic” to his resume.
“The Bull” Tye Mihocko (Peoria, Arizona) is fourth in the SouthWest point standings. Piloting the family owned #5 Property Solutions by Dave Wilson / Futuristic Designs Spike, Mihocko finished second to R.J. Johnson at the San Tan Valley oval. To date, the young driver has four heat race victories, two Beaver Stripes Passing Master Awards, one semi-main win, one hard charger award, twelve top-10 finishes, and 19 feature laps led to his credit. “The Bull” will have his sights on claiming his first career USAC SouthWest win at Canyon Speedway Park.
Nick Aiuto (Maricopa, Arizona) sits fifth in the championship point chase. Driving his #27 Hughey & Phillips / Bob Bondurant Driving School Eagle, Aiuto charged from sixteenth to score fifth at Arizona Speedway. At press time, Nick has three heat race victories, one Beaver Stripes Passing Master Award, two hard charger awards, and nine top-10 finishes on the year. Aiuto will be looking to win his first USAC SouthWest feature at the “Hall of Fame Classic.”
Among the other drivers expected to be in action are “The Magic Man” Mike Martin, Chris Bonneau, Michael Curtis, Matt Lundy, Landon Cling, Stevie Sussex, Andy Reinbold, Jeff Lowery, “The Radio Flyer” Bruce St. James, Brent Yarnal, Cody Sickles, Matt Rossi, Jake Swanson, and more.
Canyon Speedway Park is located at 9777 West Carefree Highway in Peoria, Arizona. To get to the track, take Lake Pleasant Parkway, then 1.3 miles west on Carefree Highway. General Admission Adult tickets are $20, Senior tickets (60 and over) are $15, Active Military (with ID) tickets are $15, and Kids tickets (11 and under) are FREE. Advance tickets are on sale and can be purchased by calling 602.258.RACE (7223). For more event information, visit www.canyonspeedwaypark.com.
For more information on the Sands Chevrolet USAC SouthWest Sprint Car Series, visit www.southwestsprintcars.com, www.usacracing.com, or follow the series on Facebook.
SANDS CHEVROLET USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR CHAMPIONS:
2013-R.J. Johnson, 2014-R.J. Johnson, 2015-R.J. Johnson, 2016-R.J. Johnson.
SANDS CHEVROLET HALL OF FAME CLASSIC WINNERS:
2000-Jeremy Sherman, 2001-Tony Jones, 2002-Damion Gardner, 2003-Charles Davis Jr., 2004-Mike Kirby, 2005-Damion Gardner, 2006-Jeremy Sherman, 2007-Danny Sheridan, 2008-Cancelled, 2009-Not Held, 2010-Not Held, 2011-Bryan Clauson, 2012-Mike Martin, 2013-Chase Stockon, 2014-Bryan Clauson, 2015-Mike Spencer, 2016-R.J. Johnson.
2017 SANDS CHEVROLET USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR WINS:
6-R.J. Johnson, 5-Charles Davis Jr., 2-Ryan Bernal, 2-Stevie Sussex, 1-Dave Darland, 1-Blake Hahn, 1-Matt Rossi.
PEORIA SANDS CHEVROLET USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR WINS:
16-R.J. Johnson, 8-Bryan Clauson, 4-Ryan Bernal, 4-Dave Darland, 4-Charles Davis Jr., 4-Stevie Sussex, 3-Matt Rossi, 2-Brady Bacon, 2-Josh Hodges, 2-Josh Pelkey, 1-Colby Copeland, 1-Mike Martin, 1-Mike Spencer, 1-Richard Vander Weerd.
SANDS CHEVROLET USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR POINT STANDINGS:
1. R.J. Johnson-1032, 2. Charles Davis Jr.-931, 3. Shon Deskins-791, 4. Tye Mihocko-717, 5. Nick Aiuto-713, 6. Mike Martin-632, 7. Chris Bonneau-621, 8. Michael Curtis-572, 9. Matt Lundy-523, 10. Landon Cling-500, 11. Stevie Sussex-496, 12. Andy Reinbold-458, 13. Jeff Lowery-447, 14. Bruce St. James-440, 15. Brent Yarnal-436, 16. Cody Sickles-392, 17. Matt Rossi-264, 18. Brian Hosford-191, … Jake Swanson-191, 20. Dave Darland-169.
2017 SANDS CHEVROLET USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR SCHEDULE
DATE – TRACK – LOCATION
September 29: Canyon Speedway Park – Peoria, AZ (Sands Chevrolet Hall of Fame Classic)
September 30: Canyon Speedway Park – Peoria, AZ (Sands Chevrolet Hall of Fame Classic)
October 21: Canyon Speedway Park – Peoria, AZ (Race For The Cure)
October 28: Central Arizona Speedway – Casa Grande, AZ
November 3: Arizona Speedway – San Tan Valley, AZ (Western World Championships)
November 4: Arizona Speedway – San Tan Valley, AZ (Western World Championships)
This schedule is subject to change.
#78 Chris Bonneau – 7th in USAC SouthWest Sprint Car Point Standings. Photo by Patrick Shaw / Backed In Photography.