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Tampa, FL…..1/28/04…..”Thanks to Gary Wright, I had a good start…. and track position was everything tonight,” Joey Saldana told on-track announcer Roby Helm after leading all 25 laps worth $1,500 in the 6th Annual King of 360’s preliminary opener Wednesday night at a chilly East Bay Raceway Park. Wright had been the fast qualifier and therefore drew the inversion pill for the A-Main. He drew an eight, putting Saldana outside the front row and the Brownsburg, Indiana pilot adapted to a brand new Shaw chassis that responded to his every move as he pulled ahead of the 26-car field at the drop of the green. The Red Stauffer owned machine also sported a new Don Ott engine and was sponsored by Blue Ribbon Farms Tomato Packing Company and Milk Movers, Inc.

Describing his race, Saldana said, “The groove was right on the bottom and it was one of those deals when you had to focus on what you had to do to stay in that bottom groove.” He showed how excited he was to be here when he told the crowd that he flew home from Melbourne, Australia on Monday, then drove to East Bay on Tuesday. “I saw the car for the first time today and everything worked great ‘out of the box’. “I was a little concerned about the tires. I wanted to go harder, but the only thing they had here was a Hoosier 10, so we made it work,” explained the winner. His tough decisions of handling lapped traffic came about every seven laps when he would catch the back of the field. But he showed a lot of patience and, as luck would have it, the three caution flags for spins occurred at just the right time to give Saldana a clear track.

One caution came on lap seven for a spin by Marshall Skinner. Two times, once on lap 16 and once on lap 23, Kenny Adams spun a 360 right in front of the leader for a very close call. But, in Saldana’s words, “I saw he was in trouble and I had already checked up.” Zach Chappell had started on pole and Chad Kemenah and Roger Rager made up row two. Terry Gray and Danny Lasoski were in row three followed by Lance Dewease and Wright for the eight-car inversion.

It was Rager who hounded Saldana every time the leader slowed approaching lapped traffic and he held on for a good showing in second place in the Butch Donahue-Harley Davidson with a Weisman-built Chevrolet power-plant. After taking nine years off, Rager had a good crew helping him, Brad Sparks and Deuce Turrill who made minor changes with tires and shocks.

Third place finisher, Lasoski used his familiar Eagle chassis powered by a Kistler engine to come up from sixth starting spot. Jimmy Carr explained the track conditions as, “It was rubber down from hot lapping to rubber down in the last lap of the race. We put tires on every time we went out.” The number 20 showed local sponsorship from WTS Wetherington Tractor Service and Bud’s Poultry.

Chappell and Wright had top five finishes, while rounding out the top ten it was Greg Leonard, Chad Kemenah, Jeff Shepard in Kasey Kane’s car, Shane Stewart and Dewease.

Heats went to Shepard, Terry McCarl, Johnny Anderson, Kelly Kinser, Kenny Adams and Skinner. The B-Main advanced Rager, Terry Gray, Saldana, Terry Pletch, Kemenah, Shane Stewart, Leonard and Sport Allen. The four cars to move up from the C-Main were Shane Stewart, Darren Long, Glenn Styers, Roland Johnson and Tim Hogue. The Goodson Farms Strawberry Dash was won by Derek Drown.

Thanks, Jean Lynch for East Bay Raceway Park



Qualifying Results: 1. 9 Gary Wright – 14.208; 2. 77 Lance Dewease – 14.455; 3. 20L Danny Lasoski – 14.468; 4. 10 Terry Gray – 14.472; 5. 6R Roger Rager – 14.545; 6. 20K Chad Kemenah – 14.587; 7. 2S Joey Saldana – 14.592; 8. 0 Glenn Styers – 14.625; 9. 91 Darren Stewart – 14.634; 10. 50Z Zach Chappell – 14.636; 11. 94G Greg Leonard – 14.650; 12. 00M Danny Martin – 14.653; 13. 167 Jeff Sheppard – 14.675; 14. 29P Terry Pletch – 14.681; 15. 4M Shane Stewart – 14.711; 16. 88 Sport Allen – 14.739; 17. 02 Gene Lasker – 14.741; 18. 00 Wayne Reutimann, Jr. – 14.782; 19. 7S Jason Sides – 14.783; 20. 24 Terry McCarl – 14.794; 21. 72 Curtis Boyer – 14.797; 22. 64 Brad Pake – 14.812; 23. D1 Jesse Giannetto – 14.839; 24. 33K John Karklin – 14.849; 25. 6G Cody Geldart – 14.860; 26. 63 Greg Wilson – 14.898; 27. 2 Red Stauffer – 14.925; 28. 56R Ryan Myers – 14.931; 29. 4 Kenny Adams – 14.982; 30. 5M Phill Mott – 14.988; 31. 99 Jan Opperman, Jr. – 15.025; 32. 26 Derek Drown – 15.030; 33. 7A Johnny Anderson – 15.039; 34. 97 Kelly Kinser – 15.046; 35. 7D Darren Long – 15.113; 36. 26K Marshall Skinner – 15.137; 37. 4C Mike Chadd – 15.175; 38. 82 Brian Maddox – 15.215; 39. 3 Daryl Smith – 15.227; 40. 59 Michael Smith – 15.228; 41. 2M Curt Michael – 15.251; 42. 72J Roland Johnson – 15.251; 43. 39 Tim Hogue – 15.289; 44. 21 Johnny Gilbertson – 15.301; 45. 2X Dusty Ballenger – 15.313; 46. 98 Bubba Clem – 15.342; 47. 50J Joe Zuczek – 15.387; 48. 18 Tony Bruce – 15.523; 49. 94J Wayne Johnson – 15.737; 50. 50 Rick Byerly – 15.745; 51. 8 Tighe Schloss – 15.876; 52. 6M Mike Schroeder – 16.034; 53. 6X Mark Cole – 16.225; 54. 67 Brian Thomas - NT

1st Heat – 1)Jeff Shepard 2)Jason Sides 3)Gary Wright 4)Joey Saldana 5)Jan Opperman, Jr. 6)Mike Chadd 7)Wayne Johnson 8)Tim Hogue 9)Cody Geldart

2nd Heat – 1)Terry McCarl 2)Greg Wilson 3)Lance Dewease 4)Terry Pletch 5)Brian Maddox 6)Johnny Gilbertson 7)Glenn Styers 8)Rick Byerly 9)Derek Drown DNS

3rd Heat – 1)Johnny Anderson 2)Danny Lasoski 3)Curtis Boyer 4)Darren Stewart 5)Red Stauffer 6)Dusty Ballenger 7)Shane Stewart 8)Tighe Schloss 9)Daryl Smith

4th Heat – 1)Kelly Kinser 2)Brad Pake 3)Zach Chappel 4)Ryan Myers 5)Terry Gray 6)Sport Allen 7)Michael Smith 8)Bubba Clem 9)Mike Schroeder

5th Heat – 1)Kenny Adams 2)Jesse Giannetto 3)Gene Lasker 4)Roger Rager 5)Curt Michael 6)Greg Leonard 7)Joe Zuczek 8)Darren Long 9)Mark Cole DNS

6th Heat – 1)Marshall Skinner 2)Danny Martin, Jr. 3)John Karklin 4)Chad Kemenah 5)Wayne Reutimann 6)Phil Mott 7)Roland Johnson 8)Tom Bruce 9)Brian Maddox DNS

C – Main – 1)Shane Stewart 2)Darren Long 3)Glenn Styers 4)Roland Johnson 5)Tim Hogue 6)Bubba Clem 7)Wayne Johnson 8)Derek Drown 9)Tom Bruce 10)Cody Geldart 11)Joe Zuczek 12)Mike Schroeder 13)Rick Byerly 14)Tighe Schloss 15)Michael Smith 16)Daryl Smith DNS 17)Mark Cole 18)Brain Thomas

B – Main – 1)Roger Rager 2)Terry Gray 3)Joey Saldana 4)Terry Pletch 5)Chad Kemenah 6)Shane Stewart 7)Greg Leonard 8)Sport Allen 9)Red Stauffer 10)Brian Maddox 11)Phil Mott 12)Roland Johnson 13)Wane Reutimann, Jr. 14)Darren Long 15)Johnny Gilbertson 16)Mike Chadd 17)Curt Michael 18)Glenn Styers 19)Dusty Ballenger 20)Tim Hogue 21)Ryan Myers 22)Jan Opperman, Jr. 23)Darren Stewart DNS

A – Main (25 Laps) – 1)Joey Saldana 2)Roger Rager 3)Danny Lasoski 4)Zach Chappell 5)Gary Wright 6)Greg Leonard 7)Chad Kemenah 8)Jeff Sheppard 9)Shane Stewart 10)Lance Dewease 11)Terry McCarl 12)Terry Gray 13)Greg Wilson 14)Johnny Anderson 15)Danny Martin 16)Kelly Kinser 17)Jason Sides 18)Curtis Boyer 19)Brad Pake 20)Jesse Giannetto 21)Sport Allen 22)John Karklin 23)Kenny Adams 24)Terry Pletch 25)Marshall Skinner 26)Gene Lasker

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