Hodges Stops R.J. Johnson Sweep in Freedom Tour Finale at DCRP

jhLonnie Wheatley, DODGE CITY, Kan. (August 20, 2016) – It was very nearly the week of R.J. Johnson entirely. New Mexico’s Josh Hodges had other ideas though.

After Johnson won the opening two rounds of the USAC Southwest “Freedom Tour” earlier in the week, the Phoenix shoe added a POWRi West Summer Showdown win to kick off Saturday night’s feature action atop the 3/8-mile Dodge City Raceway Park.

And the sweep of the night and “Freedom Tour” was well within reach with Johnson gridding the feature from the pole position. But, after leading the opening half of the race and then once again recapturing the lead, Johnson surrendered the point to Hodges in the final handful of circuits in the 30-lapper.

It was Hodges third overall win of the season aboard the Jackson Compaction/Mesilla Valley Trucking No. 74x Maxim and snapped a run of five consecutive wins for defending champion Johnson.

“That was a bad piece of driving there on my part,” Hodges said of handing the lead back over to Johnson on a lap 24 restart. “I didn’t think there was that much down there, but then I tried it and it stuck. We were fortunate to have a good enough car to get back out front.”

Hodges had chased Johnson from the outset, working the upper portion of the track as Johnson trimmed the berm in each corner.

Johnson kept Hodges at bay over the initial half of the race before Hodges took advantage of a lap 17 restart to take command.

Johnson returned the favor when Hodges left the low side of turn one open on the next restart six laps later. Hodges proved too strong though, battling back into the lead for keeps on the 26th lap and then surviving another pair of cautions with three laps to go to secure the win.

Johnson settled for second with fellow Arizona racer Shon Deskins capturing the show position. Deskins briefly battled past Johnson just past the halfway mark for second before Johnson surged back towards the front.

In just his eighth career wingless start and first of the year, Wichita resident Jeremy Campbell raced to a fourth-place finish with Charles Davis, Jr., rounding out the top five after running third over the initial half of the race.

Tennessee’s Anthony Nicholson finished out his first “Freedom Tour” with a sixth-place run as Dennis Gile, Shannon McQueen, Jordon Mallett and Zach Blurton.

In the POWRi West “Summer Showdown” portion of the evening, R.J. Johnson jumped into the lead at the outset and led all the way in the 20-lapper to become the third different winner of the week as Michelle Decker held off Matt Sherrell for runner-up honors.

Action continues at Dodge City Raceway Park next Saturday night, August 27, with the Third Annual IMCA Sport Modified Mayhem event along with the Precise Racing Products DCRP Sprint Cars, IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Stock Cars and IMCA Hobby Stocks.

Dodge City Raceway Park

August 20 Results:

Fourth Annual USAC Southwest Sprint Cars “Freedom Tour”:

Heat One (8 Laps): 1. 10c-Jeremy Campbell, 2. 77m-R.J. Johnson, 3. 17w-Harli White, 4. 50-Charles Davis, Jr., 5. 20-Shon Deskins, 6. 56x-Mark Chisholm, 7. 98-Ryan Padgett, 8. 15d-Andrew Deal.

Heat Two (8 Laps): 1. 14-Jordon Mallett, 2. 13g-Dennis Gile, 3. 74x-Josh Hodges, 4. 7-Shannon McQueen, 5. 16x-Anthony Nicholson, 6. 5-Tye Mihocko, 7. 2J-Zach Blurton.

Qualifier One (8 Laps): 1. 50-Charles Davis, Jr., 2. 74x-Josh Hodges, 3. 77-R.J. Johnson, 4. 20-Shon Deskins, 5. 14-Jordon Mallett, 6. 2J-Zach Blurton, 7. 5-Tye Mihocko. DNS: 15d-Andrew Deal.

Qualifiers Two (8 Laps): 1. 16x-Anthony Nicholson, 2. 10c-Jeremy Campbell, 3. 13g-Dennis Gile, 4. 17w-Harli White, 5. 7-Shannon McQueen, 6. 98-Ryan Padgett. DNS: 56x-Mark Chisholm.

“A” Main (30 Laps): 1. 74x-Josh Hodges, 2. 77m-R.J. Johnson, 3. 20-Shon Deskins, 4. 10c-Jeremy Campbell, 5. 50-Charles Davis, Jr., 6. 16x-Anthony Nicholson, 7. 13g-Dennis Gile, 8. 7-Shannon McQueen, 9. 14-Jordon Mallett, 10. 2J-Zach Blurton, 11. 98-Ryan Padgett, 12. 17w-Harli White, 13. 5-Tye Mihocko, 14. 56x-Mark Chisholm, 15. 15d-Andrew Deal.

Lap Leaders: R.J. Johnson 1-16, Josh Hodges 17-23, Johnson 24-25, Hodges 26-30.

POWRi West Midgets “Summer Showdown”:

Heat One (8 Laps): 1. 51-R.J. Johnson, 2. 35-Matt Sherrell, 3. 4m-Michelle Decker, 4. 56-Mark Chisholm, 5. 82-Steven Shebester, 6. 44-Don Droud, Jr., 7. 72-Grady Chandler, 8. 17e-Blake Edwards.

Qualifier One (8 Laps): 1. 44-Don Droud, Jr., 2. 4m-Michelle Decker, 3. 51-R.J. Johnson, 4. 35-Matt Sherrell, 5. 82-Steven Shebester, 6. 56-Mark Chisholm, 7. 72-Grady Chandler, 8. 17e-Blake Edwards.

“A” Main (20 Laps): 1. 51-R.J. Johnson, 2. 4m-Michelle Decker, 3. 35-Matt Sherrell, 4. 44-Don Droud, Jr., 5. 82m-Steven Shebester, 6. 14-Grady Chandler, 7. 56-Mark Chisholm, 8. 17e-Blake Edwards.

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JOSH HODGES WINS “FREEDOM TOUR” SHOOTOUT AT DODGE CITY

1hodgesLance Jennings, AUGUST 22, 2016… After a torrid battle with R.J. Johnson, Josh Hodges (Tijeras, New Mexico) emerged victorious last Saturday at Dodge City Raceway Park. For Hodges, the $2,500 “Freedom Tour” finale win was his third USAC SouthWest Sprint Car triumph of the campaign. Johnson, hard charger Shon Deskins, Jeremy Campbell, and “Chargin” Charles Davis Jr. rounded out the top-five drivers.

Racing the family owned #74X Jackson Compaction / Mesilla Valley Transportation Maxim, Josh Hodges ranked fifth in passing points after running third in his heat race and second in his qualifier. Staging on the outside of the front row, Hodges chased polesitter Johnson for the first sixteen laps. Looking for his first “Freedom Tour” win, Josh took command but surrendered the lead back to Johnson on the 24th circuit. R.J.’s lead was short-lived and Hodges reclaimed the top spot and took the checkered flags. Hodges left Dodge City tied with Ryan Bernal for seventh on the series win list with four victories.

R.J. Johnson (Tempe, Arizona) led eighteen laps of the Dodge City finale, but had to settle for second. Piloting Bill Michael’s #77M Kodiak Products / Beal’s Auto Body entry, Johnson ran second to Jeremy Campbell in his heat race, scored third in his qualifier, and ranked sixth in passing points. The three-time champion will head to El Paso on September 2nd with a 107-point lead and 40 series wins to his credit.

Shon Deskins (Phoenix, Arizona) earned the night’s “Hard Charger / Best Passing Job” honors with a third place run from tenth. Driving his #20 Spike Chassis / Performance Plus Engines entry, Deskins scored fifth in his heat race and took fourth in his qualifier. Placed tenth in passing points, the veteran racer returned home sitting seventeenth in the point chase.

Jeremy Campbell (Wichita, Kansas) returned to non-wing racing and scored fourth in the “Freedom Tour” finale. Racing his #10C Dan’s Cycle / Arctic Cat machine, Campbell won the night’s first heat race, placed second in his qualifier, and ranked fourth in passing points.

“Chargin” Charles Davis Jr. (Buckeye, Arizona) took fifth at Dodge City Raceway Park. Piloting the Massey Motorsports owned #50 RSS Industries / Bell Racing RSS, Davis ran fourth in his heat race and won the night’s first qualifier. The five-time Arizona champion heads to El Paso ranked second in the point standings and looking for his first win of the season.

Dennis Gile (Phoenix, Arizona) was the night’s top-qualifier out of the fifteen racers in the pit area. Driving the family owned #13 Quarterback Academy / Bobby Q Ellis, Gile ran second to Jordon Mallett in his heat race, claimed third in his qualifier and finished seventh in the feature. Last season’s Rookie of the Year sits eighth in points and will be looking for his first El Paso triumph.

For the third consecutive night of the “Freedom Tour, Jordon Mallett (Greenbrier, Arkansas) earned a heat race victory. Racing his #14 machine, Mallett scored fifth in his qualifier, placed eighth in passing points, and took ninth in the 30-lap feature.

Anthony Nicholson (Bartlett, Tennessee) took the checkered flags in the night’s second 8-lap qualifier. Piloting his #16X entry, Nicholson ran fifth in his heat race, ranked seventh in passing points, and finished sixth in the Dodge City main event.
The USAC SouthWest Sprint Cars will return to action on September 2nd at the Western Tech Speedway Park in El Paso, Texas. Co-sanctioned with the NMMRA Sprints, the $2,000-to-win “Border Tour” event will also feature the USRA Modifieds, Street Stocks, and claimers. For more information, visit epspeedway.com or call 915.791.8749.

For more information on the USAC SouthWest Sprint Car Series, visit www.southwestsprintcars.com, www.usacracing.com, or follow the series on Facebook.
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USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR (Special Event) RACE RESULTS:
August 20, 2016 – Dodge City, Kansas – Dodge City Raceway Park – “Freedom Tour”

FIRST HEAT: (8 laps)
1. Jeremy Campbell (#10C Campbell), 2. R.J. Johnson (#77M Michael), 3. Harli White (#17W White), 4. Charles Davis Jr. (#50 Massey), 5. Shon Deskins (#20 Deskins), 6. Mark Chisholm (#56X Chisolm), 7. Ryan Padgett (#98 Padgett), 8. Andrew Deal (#15D Deal). NT

SECOND HEAT: (8 laps)
1. Jordon Mallett (#14 Mallett), 2. Dennis Gile (#13 Gile), 3. Josh Hodges (#74X Hodges), 4. Shannon McQueen (#7 Decker), 5. Anthony Nicholson (#16X Nicholson), 6. Tye Mihocko (#5 Mihocko), 7. Zach Blurton (#2J Blurton). NT

FIRST QUALIFIER: (8 laps)
1. Davis, 2. Hodges, 3. Johnson, 4. Deskins, 5. Mallett, 6. Blurton, 7. Mihocko. NT

SECOND QUALIFIER: (8 laps)
1. Nicholson, 2. Campbell, 3. Gile, 4. White, 5. McQueen, 6. Padgett. NT

FEATURE: (30 laps – With Starting Positions)
1. Josh Hodges (2nd), 2. R.J. Johnson (1st), 3. Shon Deskins (10th), 4. Jeremy Campbell (3rd), 5. Charles Davis Jr. (4th), 6. Anthony Nicholson (7th), 7. Dennis Gile (6th), 8. Shannon McQueen (9th), 9. Jordon Mallett (8th), 10. Zach Blurton (11th), 11. Ryan Padgett (12th), 12. Harli White (5th), 13. Tye Mihocko (13th), 14. Mark Chisholm (14th), 15. Andrew Deal (15th). NT
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FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-16 Johnson, Laps 17-23 Hodges, Laps 24-25 Johnson, Laps 26-30 Hodges.
HARD CHARGER: Shon Deskins (10th to 3rd)

2016 USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR SCHEDULE
DATE – TRACK – LOCATION
September 2: #Western Tech Speedway Park – El Paso, TX (Border Tour / $2,000-to-Win)
September 3: #Southern New Mexico Speedway – Las Cruces, NM (Border Tour / $2,000-to-Win)
September 17: Arizona Speedway – Queen Creek, AZ
October 15: Arizona Speedway – Queen Creek, AZ
October 22: Canyon Speedway – Peoria, AZ (Hank Arnold Memorial)
October 29: Central Arizona Speedway – Casa Grande, AZ
November 4: Arizona Speedway – Queen Creek, AZ (Western World Championships / $2,000-to-Win)
November 5: Arizona Speedway – Queen Creek, AZ (Western World Championships / $5,000-to-Win)
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# = Co-Sanctioned Event with NMMRA Sprints.
This schedule is subject to change.

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USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR (Special Event) RACE RESULTS: August 20, 2016 – Dodge City, Kansas – Dodge City Raceway Park – “Freedom Tour”

16freedomUSAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR (Special Event) RACE RESULTS: August 20, 2016 – Dodge City, Kansas – Dodge City Raceway Park – “Freedom Tour”

FIRST HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Jeremy Campbell (#10C Campbell), 2. R.J. Johnson (#77M Michael), 3. Harli White (#17W White), 4. Charles Davis Jr. (#50 Massey), 5. Shon Deskins (#20 Deskins), 6. Mark Chisholm (#56X Chisolm), 7. Ryan Padgett (#98 Padgett), 8. Andrew Deal (#15D Deal). NT

SECOND HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Jordon Mallett (#14 Mallett), 2. Dennis Gile (#13 Gile), 3. Josh Hodges (#74X Hodges), 4. Shannon McQueen (#7 Decker), 5. Anthony Nicholson (#16X Nicholson), 6. Tye Mihocko (#5 Mihocko), 7. Zach Blurton (#2J Blurton). NT

FIRST QUALIFIER: (8 laps) 1. Davis, 2. Hodges, 3. Johnson, 4. Deskins, 5. Mallett, 6. Blurton, 7. Mihocko. NT

SECOND QUALIFIER: (8 laps) 1. Nicholson, 2. Campbell, 3. Gile, 4. White, 5. McQueen, 6. Padgett. NT

FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. Josh Hodges, 2. R.J. Johnson, 3. Shon Deskins, 4. Jeremy Campbell, 5. Charles Davis Jr., 6. Anthony Nicholson, 7. Dennis Gile, 8. Shannon McQueen, 9. Jordon Mallett, 10. Zach Blurton, 11. Ryan Padgett, 12. Harli White, 13. Tye Mihocko, 14. Mark Chisholm, 15. Andrew Deal. NT
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FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-16 Johnson, Laps 17-23 Hodges, Laps 24-25 Johnson, Laps 26-30 Hodges.
HARD CHARGER: Shon Deskins (10th to 3rd)

NEXT USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT RACE: September 2 – El Paso, Texas – Western Tech Speedway Park – “Border Tour”

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FREEDOM TOUR” SUFFERS WICHITA RAINOUT

16freedomWichita, KS………Rain has forced cancellation of Friday night’s “Freedom Tour” USAC Southwest Sprint Car “special event” at 81 Speedway. The tour concludes Saturday night at Dodge City (Kans.) Raceway Park.

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R.J. JOHNSON SCORES 40TH USAC SOUTHWEST WIN AT CREEK COUNTY

rjLance Jennings, AUGUST 18, 2016… Taking command from Dennis Gile on the twenty-eighth lap, R.J. Johnson (Tempe, Arizona) claimed the checkered flags at Sapulpa, Oklahoma’s Creek County Speedway. Continuing to write series history, Johnson’s fourth $2,500 USAC SouthWest “Freedom Tour” win marked his 40th career triumph and the eighth victory of the season. In addition, the three-time champion set a new record with five consecutive main event wins. Josh Hodges, Gile, Koby Barksdale, and Shon Deskins rounded out the top-five drivers.

Driving Bill Michael’s #77M Kodiak Products / Beal’s Auto Body entry, R.J. Johnson dominated the event and swept the program. The three-time series champion began his night by winning the night’s third 8-lap heat race, claiming the night’s top-qualifier award out of 33 racers, and won the main event from sixth.

After running third at Lawton, Josh Hodges (Tijeras, New Mexico) had a last lap pass to claim second at Creek County. Racing the family owned #74X Jackson Compaction / Mesilla Valley Transportation Maxim, Hodges placed fourth in his heat race and ranked fifth in the night’s passing points.

Starting on the pole position, Dennis Gile (Phoenix, Arizona) led the first twenty-seven laps before falling to third at Creek County. Piloting the family owned #13 Quarterback Academy / Bobby Q Ellis, Gile ran second to Jordon Mallett in his heat race and ranked sixth in passing points.

Koby Barksdale (Norman, Oklahoma) charged from ninth to score fourth at the second round of the “Freedom Tour.” Driving his #22 entry, the veteran driver won the night’s second 8-lap heat race and was seated ninth in passing points.

Shon Deskins (Phoenix, Arizona) had another solid night at the “Freedom Tour” with a fifth place finish. Racing his #20 Spike Chassis / Performance Plus Engines Maxim, Deskins ran second to Koby Barksdale in his heat race and ranked fourth in passing points.

In his first USAC SouthWest start, Alex DeCamp (Locust Grove, OK) earned the night’s “Hard Charger / Best Passing Job” honors with a ninth place run from nineteenth. Piloting his #84 machine, DeCamp scored ninth in his heat race and was seated nineteenth in passing points.

For the second night in a row, Jordon Mallett (Greenbrier, Arkansas) won the night’s first 8-lap heat race. Driving his #14 machine, Mallett ranked eighth in passing points and claimed eleventh at Creek County Speedway.

Cameron Hagin (Broken Arrow, Oklahoma) won the night’s fourth heat race in his first USAC SouthWest start. Racing his #5H entry, Hagin ranked second in passing points and seventeenth in the feature after an early exit.

Kyle Clark (Sand Springs, Oklahoma) raced to victory in the night’s first 12-lap semi-main. Piloting his #9$ machine, Clark scored fourth in his heat race and charged from fifteenth to score eighth in the feature.

Anthony Nicholson (Bartlett, Tennessee) took the checkered flags in the night’s second 12-lap semi-main. Driving his #16X entry, Nicholson placed fifth in his heat race and charged to tenth in the main event after starting sixteenth.

The “4th Annual Freedom Tour” will continue to 81 Speedway (Wichita, Kansas) and will close this Saturday at Dodge City Raceway Park (Dodge City, Kansas).

For more information on the USAC SouthWest Sprint Car Series, visit www.southwestsprintcars.com, www.usacracing.com, or follow the series on Facebook.
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USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR (Special Event) RACE RESULTS:
August 18, 2016 – Sapulpa, Oklahoma – Creek County Speedway – “Freedom Tour”

FIRST HEAT: (8 laps)
1. Jordon Mallett (#14 Mallett), 2. Dennis Gile (#13 Gile), 3. Wyatt Burks (#11W Burks), 4. Josh Hodges (#74X Hodges), 5. Charles Davis Jr. (#50 Massey), 6. David Stephenson (#22S Stephenson), 7. Cody Brewer (#96 Brewer), 8. Brian McClelland (#87F McClelland), 9. Alex DeCamp (#84 DeCamp). NT

SECOND HEAT: (8 laps)
1. Koby Barksdale (#22 Barksdale), 2. Shon Deskins (#20 Deskins), 3. Kade Morton (#8M Morton), 4. Kyle Clark (#9$ Clark), 5. Layne Himebaugh (#24L Himebaugh), 6. Danny Smith (#5$ Smith), 7. Kyle Chady (#57 Chady), 8. Tim Kent (#79 Kent). NT

THIRD HEAT: (8 laps)
1. R.J. Johnson (#77M Michael), 2. Craig Carroll (#24C Carroll), 3. Blake Hahn (#52 Hahn), 4. Andrew Deal (#15D Deal), 5. Anthony Nicholson (#16X Nicholson), 6. Brett Wilson (#53 Wilson), 7. Grant Wresche (#13W Wresche), 8. Casey Wills (#31 Wills). NT

FOURTH HEAT: (8 laps)
1. Cameron Hagin (#5H Hagin), 2. Waylon Weaver (#92 Weaver), 3. Tye Mihocko (#5 Mihocko), 4. Shannon McQueen (#7 Decker), 5. Jamie McDonald (#3 McDonald), 6. Kevin Cummings (#97 Cummings), 7. William Scribner (#54 Scribner), 8. David Dutton (#23 Dutton). NT

FIRST SEMI: (12 laps)
1. Clark, 2. Wilson, 3. DeCamp, 4. Kent, 5. Scribner, 6. Morton, 7. McClelland, 8. Cummings, 9. Smith. NT

SECOND SEMI: (12 laps)
1. Nicholson, 2. Himebaugh, 3. Deal, 4. Chady, 5. Wresche, 6. McDonald, 7. Brewer, 8. Dutton. NT

FEATURE: (30 laps – With Starting Positions)
1. R.J. Johnson (6th), 2. Josh Hodges (2nd), 3. Dennis Gile (1st), 4. Koby Barksdale (9th), 5. Shon Deskins (3rd), 6. Tye Mihocko (4th), 7. Charles Davis Jr. (13th), 8. Kyle Clark (15th), 9. Alex Decamp (19th), 10. Anthony Nicholson (16th), 11. Jordon Mallett (8th), 12. Layne Himebaugh (18th), 13. Wyatt Burks (14th), 14. Brett Wilson (17th), 15. Shannon McQueen (10th), 16. Blake Hahn (7th), 17. Cameron Hagin (5th), 18. Andrew Deal (20th), 19. Waylon Weaver (12th), 20. Craig Carroll (11th). NT
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**Wills flipped during the third heat. Brewer flipped during the second semi.

FEATURE LAP LEADERS: Laps 1-27 Gile, Laps 28-30 Johnson.
HARD CHARGER: Alex DeCamp (19th to 9th)

2016 USAC SOUTHWEST SPRINT CAR SCHEDULE
DATE – TRACK – LOCATION
August 19: 81 Speedway – Wichita, KS (Freedom Tour / $2,500-to-Win / Non-Points)
August 20: Dodge City Raceway Park – Dodge City, KS (Freedom Tour / $2,500-to-Win / Non-Points)
September 2: #Western Tech Speedway Park – El Paso, TX (Border Tour / $2,000-to-Win)
September 3: #Southern New Mexico Speedway – Las Cruces, NM (Border Tour / $2,000-to-Win)
September 17: Arizona Speedway – Queen Creek, AZ
October 15: Arizona Speedway – Queen Creek, AZ
October 22: Canyon Speedway – Peoria, AZ (Hank Arnold Memorial)
October 29: Central Arizona Speedway – Casa Grande, AZ
November 4: Arizona Speedway – Queen Creek, AZ (Western World Championships / $2,000-to-Win)
November 5: Arizona Speedway – Queen Creek, AZ (Western World Championships / $5,000-to-Win)
———————————————–
# = Co-Sanctioned Event with NMMRA Sprints.
This schedule is subject to change.

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Schedule

Results

Points