Rickie Gaunt wins second in row – this one at Santa Maria Speedway


Super Rickie Gaunt won his second Valvoline USAC/CRA series race in a row driving the Smiley Crane Service, Extreme Chassis Co., Chargin, Extreme # 2A sprinter at Santa Maria Speedway this weekend. Rickie grabbed the lead from teammate Charles Davis Jr on lap 9 and led the rest of the way. His last win at the scenic facility was in 1991 in a wing car. It was the largest crowd at the race track in three years.


Rickie held off the point leader, Rip Williams, the last half of the race and later said in the winners circle, “I couldn’t of held em’ off 5more laps, I knew the Ripper and the Demon were back there and they let me have my way”. Following Rip was Damion Gardner, Danny Ebberts and local driver Davey Pombo.


With two incidents on the first two starts of the 30 lap race, three of the front four drivers became the rear three before Charles Davis Jr swept out to a quick lead on the third attempt to start the main event. Cory Kruseman was in the mix until his car began popping and he fell back to 18th, barely running at the end. Danny Ebberts came from his 12th place starting spot to get fourth and was the hard charger of the night.


VALVOLINE USAC/CRA SPRINT CAR SERIES RACE RESULTS: June 18, 2005Santa Maria, CaliforniaSanta Maria Speedway

      QUALIFICATIONS: 1. Rip Williams, 3, Jory-13.697; 2. Cory Kruseman, 38, Crossno-13.790; 3. Charles Davis, Jr, 8A, Smiley-13.820; 4. Davey Pombo, 3P, Pombo-13.850; 5. Damion Gardner, 50, Chaffin-13.867; 6. Josh Ford, 73, Ford-13.884; 7. Rickie Gaunt, 2A, Smiley-13.887; 8. Rodney Argo, 19, Argo-13.895; 9. Danny Sheridan, 18, Kittle-13.939; 10. Jordan Hermansader, 21A, Dorathy-13.997; 11. Alan Ballard, 97, Ballard-14.102; 12. Mike Kirby, 4, Alexander-14.104; 13. Danny Ebberts, 77, Acosta-14.205; 14. Bobby Cody, 41, Cody-14.233; 15. Tom Stansberry, 48, Bach-14.342; 16. Jimmy Crawford, 17C, Crawford-14.408; 17. Mike Knopf, 5K, Knopf 14.420; 18. Seth Wilson, 17, Racing Optics-14.637; 19. Dennis Rodriguez, 20, Rowher-14.940; 20. Nadine Keller, 16, Keller-15.008; 21. Thad Bennett, 77x, Bennett-15.150.

      FIRST HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Crawford, 2. Ebberts. 3. Gaunt, 4. Williams, 5. Hermansader, 6. Pombo, 7. Rodriguez. NT

      SECOND HEAT: (10 laps) 1. Cody, 2.
Gardner, 3. Knopf, 4. Ballard, 5. Kruseman, 6. Keller, 7. Argo. NT

      THIRD HEAT: (10 laps) 1.
Wilson, 2. Sheridan, 3. Stansberry, 4. Davis, 5. Ford, 6. Kirby, 7. Bennett. NT

      SEMI: (12 laps) 1. Pombo. 2. Kirby, 3. Keller, 4. Rodriguez, 5. Bennett. NT

      FEATURE: (30 laps) 1. Rickie Gaunt, 2. Rip Williams, 3. Damion Gardner, 4. Danny Ebberts, 5. Davey Pombo, 6. Alan Ballard, 7. Bobby Cody, 8. Tom Stansberry, 9. Mike Kirby, 10. Jimmy Crawford, 11. Josh Ford, 12. Mike Knopf, 13. Seth Wilson, 14. Charles Davis, Jr., 15. Dennis Rodriguez, 16. Todd Bennett, 17. Nadine Keller, 18, Cory Kruseman, 19. Jordan Hermansader, 20. Danny Sheridan. NT

**Argo and Keller flipped during the second heat.


Davis, Laps 9-30 Gaunt.


NEW USAC/CRA SPRINT CAR STANDINGS: 1-Williams-945; 2-Gardner-840; 3-Kruseman-813; 4-Davis-787; 5-Kirby-781; 6-Gaunt-684; 7-Ballard-463; 8-Wilson-462; 9-Ford-461; 10-Tony Jones-447.