Nearly a Perfect Night for Peter Murphy in Chico By: Troy Hennig (Chico, CA 5-31-02)…Australia’s Peter Murphy narrowly missed a complete clean sweep Friday night at Chico when he finished second in his heat race. Murphy, for the eighth time this year turned the fastest lap of the night at a 13.597, and then after finishing second in his heat race he went on to lead all 20 laps of the sprint car main event. It was Murphy’s second win of the year at John Padjen’s Silver Dollar Speedway.
Twenty-one sprint cars started the 20 lap main event with Danny Ochs and Jonathan Allard on the front row, however, it was Murphy who came from the second row for the lead on lap one. The sprint car race began a race of length and endurance as numerous yellow flags and drivers unwilling to get in their correct restarting spots dragged out this race.
Lap one had Ryan Flynn come to a stop. Then later in the race Flynn made contact with Steve Ferhman on lap six and was done for the night because of the two spin rule at Chico. It was a tough break for Flynn who was third in the points going into tonight. Racing continued but was halted on lap two for Sean Becker. He restarted in the back of the pack and would charge from last to a seventh place finish.
Another driver on the move was John Gray. The Chico driver started in the ninth row, eighteenth spot, and drove one of his best races to date to finish in fourth. Up front it was the Murphy show with Allard in second and a rejuvenated Jason York in third. The final caution of the night fell on lap 19 and made for a one lap dash to the finish. Murphy never seemed phased or lost his rhythm and held strong to won the race. Allard finished second followed by York, Gray, Shain Matthews and Andy Forsberg.
Results Sprint Cars
Fast Time: Peter Murphy: 13.597
Heat 1: Stephen Allard, Peter Murphy, Steve Ferhman, Andy Forsberg, Danny Ochs
Heat 2: Jason York, Bryan Amos, Rick Hirst, Shain Matthews, Ryan Flynn
Heat 3: Jonathan Allard, Dave Clarke, Troy Hovey, Sean Becker, Chris Scott
A Main: Murphy, Allard, York, John Gray, Matthews, Forsberg, Becker, Ochs, Amos, Hirst, Hovey, Bud Walberg, Scott, Tommy Fogarty