Wysong stays hot, makes it seven winners in seven USAC Western Sprint races - By Bobby Gerould, West Valley City, UT. July 23, 2005 - "We didn't go fast enough to put the flames out", joked winner Jimmy Wysong, referring to his paint job on the Jeff Spiers Racing #29. But he went plenty fast otherwise. Winning his third straight feature event at Rocky Mountain Raceways, Wysong used his local knowledge to defeat the traveling visitors from the Valvoline USAC Western Sprint Car Series. The Salt Lake City driver started inside row two for the 50-lap A-Main on the ultra fast 3/8s-mile high banked paved oval.
Todd Ellison and Tony Hunt shared the front row as 4,500 fans stood to watch the start. Ellison led the opening lap as Wysong battled for second place with Hunt, the 2004 series champion. Quick qualifier Kody Swanson threw his name into the mix and actually was running third after two laps. His high groove run was short-lived though as Wysong passed the 17 year-old one lap later. A similar move propelled Wysong past Hunt for good on lap four. Mike Murgoitio made his presence felt on lap six when he moved into the top three with a back chute pass of Hunt. The caution flag flew on lap eight for a stalled Destiney Hays. She re-fired at the rear of the pack for the restart.
Wysong lined up behind Ellison and when the green replaced the yellow, Wysong dipped low to pull even with the driver of Ted Finkenbinder's #3F. The winning pass happened at the end of the back chute on lap eight. Murgoitio passed Ellison on lap ten to take second. The final caution flag appeared after a quick spin by Michael Trimble in turn four on laps 15. He too restarted at the rear.
As the race approached halfway, Dave Fitzgerald moved into the top three with a start-finish line pass of Ellison. By that time, Wysong was enjoying a three quarter straightaway lead over Murgoitio. Traffic was never really a factor for the leader but it did make for a great battle for second. By lap 43 Fitzgerald was giving Murgoitio fits. But Murgoitio, of Meridian Idaho, cleared traffic with a nifty move on lap 45 that left Fitzgerald hung out. At the checkered flag, it was Wysong by a full straightaway over Murgoitio. Fitzgerald brought home the Kerry Hamblin #32 in third place. Ellison was fourth, and Swanson wrapped up a good night in his first trip ever to RMR with a fifth place finish. Jimmy Waters, Rick Pardee, Brian McClish, Cody Veenstra, and Chris Peterson filled out the top ten.
"This Salt Lake crowd is tough to beat", said Murgoitio over the public address system post-race. The 50-laps of action saw cars turning laps below the track record.
Shauna Hogg, Hays, and Peterson were heat race winners. Pardee won the B-Main. The USAC Western Sprint Cars now enjoy a month off before returning to the track August 27th at Stockton 99 Speedway in Stockton, CA.
QUALIFICATIONS: 1. Kody Swanson, 75, Swanson-14.226; 2. Dave Fitzgerald, 32, Hamblin-14.271; 3. Mike Murgoitio, 80, Murgoitio-14.287; 4. Jimmy Wysong, 29, Spiers-14.291; 5. Tony Hunt, 94, Kaiser-14.365; 6. Todd Ellison, 3F, Finkenbinder-14.365; 7. Jim Waters, 24, Ault-14.368; 8. Brian McClish, 04, McClish-14.429; 9. Mel Andrus, 22, Andrus-14.432; 10. Michael Trimble, 15, CTR-14.434; 11. Destiney Hays, 28, Hays-14.493; 12. Chris Peterson, 18, Petersen-14.593; 13. Rick Pardee, 10, Pardee-14.610; 14. Cody Veenstra, 07, Veenstra-14.620; 15. Jim Campbell, 66, Campbell-14.682; 16. Shauna Hogg, 5, Hogg-14.723; 17. Jeff Bergener, 13, Gunn-14.756;18. .Mark Bergener, 43, Bergener-14.762; 19. Chuck Maddox, 23, Maddox-14.797; 20. James Waters, 24w, Ault-14.843; 21. Robert Crowther, Jr., 11, Crowther-15.195; 22. Everett Wysong, 29w, Spiers-15.363; 23. Paul Marconi, 70, Marconi-NT; 24. James Waters, 17, Henrie-NT.
FIRST HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Hogg, 2. Jim Waters, 3. J.Wysong, 4. Trimble, 5. Swanson, 6. Maddox, 7. Pardee. NT
SECOND HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Hays, 2. James Waters (#24w), 3. Veenstra, 4. Fitzgerald, 5. Hunt, 6. E.Wysong, 7. McClish, 8. J.Bergener. NT
THIRD HEAT: (8 laps) 1. Petersen, 2. Ellison, 3. Murgoitio, 4. Andrus, 5. Campbell, 7. M.Bergener, 7. Crowther. NT
SEMI: (10 laps) 1.Pardee, 2. Maddox, 3. McClish, 4. M.Bergener, 5. Crowther, 6. E.Wysong. NT
Feature: 50 laps 1. Jimmy Wysong, 2. Mike Murgoitio, 3. Dave Fitzgerald, 4. Todd Ellison, 5. Kody Swanson, 6. Jimmy Waters, 7. Rick Pardee, 8. Brian McClish, 9. Cody Veenstra, 10. Chris Petersen, 11. Michael Trimble, 12. Tony Hunt, 13. Shauna Hogg, 14. Mark Bergener, 15. Destiney Hays, 16. Jim Campbell, 17. Everett Wysong, 18. Chuck Maddox, 19. Robert Crowther Jr., 20. James Waters, 21. Jeff Bergener, 22. Mel Andrus Jr. (DNS)
NEW WESTERN SPRINT CAR POINTS: 1-Swanson-410; 2-Hunt-398; 3-Murgoitio-379; 4-Tim Barber-349; 5-McClish-322; 6-Veenstra-304; 7-Trimble-300; 8-Brad Bumgarner-292; 9-Petersen-242; 10-Hogg-232.