K&N West Stat Advance: Kern & Irwindale

K&N West Stat Advance: Kern & Irwindale

Analyzing the NAPA Auto Parts 150 & NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West will hold three races in three days with the NAPA Auto Parts 150 at Kern County Raceway Park in Bakersfield, California, on Thursday, March 23, and the NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s at Irwindale Speedway in Irwindale, California, on Saturday, March 25. Below is a look at the three events and some of the selected participants.

NAPA Auto Parts 150 Race Setup: 
• For the sixth time in history, Kern will host the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West after opening in 2013.
• Chris Eggleston of Erie, Colorado, holds the series point lead after winning the season-opening event last week in Tucson over Bill McAnally Racing teammate Todd Gilliland.
• Gilliland won the race at Kern from the pole last season.
• If Eggleston can win the NAPA Auto Parts 150, he will be halfway to winning the $100,000 NAPA 500 Challenge Series.

NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s Race Setup: 
• The K&N Pro Series West will hold two 100-lap events at Irwindale, with each standing as a separate points-paying event.
• Todd Gilliland won the only race at Irwindale in 2016, the season opener, to become the sixth different winner at the track over the last six races there.
• The races are the final two races in the NAPA 500 Challenge Series, which promises a $100,000 bonus to the driver who can win all four races to begin the season.

At Kern County Raceway Park:
History:
• Kern County opened in 2013 with a NASCAR Whelen All-American Series event.
• The track has held one K&N West race each year since its opening, with the lone exception being the 2014 season when it held two races.
• Greg Pursley is the only repeat winner at Kern.

At Irwindale Speedway:
History:
• Irwindale Speedway opened in March 1999 and has capacity for 6,500 spectators.
• The facility is in the San Gabriel Valley of Southern California and is just 25 minutes from downtown Los Angeles.
• There are multiple racing configurations available with half-mile and third-mile ovals along with a 1/8-mile drag strip.
• The half-mile track was home to the NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown, a special non-points event for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series and NASCAR Whelen All-American Series, from 2003-11.

Kern & Irwindale Notebook:
• This is the series’ sixth event at Kern and the 25th race in its history at Irwindale.
• Four different drivers have won at Kern, with Greg Pursley winning twice.
• Fourteen different drivers have won at Irwindale, led by Austin Cameron with five wins.
• Four different drivers have won the pole at Kern, led by Pursley’s two, and three times the race has been won from the pole.
• Fifteen different drivers, led by Jason Bowles with three, have won the pole at Irwindale.
• Nine different drivers, led by Butch Gilliland with five, have earned the pole award at Irwindale.

Kern Data:
Race: #2 of 14 overall
Race Date: Thursday, March 23, 7:45 p.m. PT
Air date: Tuesday, March 28 at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT
Track Layout: .500-mile banked asphalt oval
Banking/Corners: Progressive, between 12-14 degrees
Banking/Straights: 8 degrees
Race Length: 150 laps (75 miles)

Qualifying/Race Data:
2016 Winner: Todd Gilliland
2016 Pole Sitter: Todd Gilliland
1-lap Qualifying Record: Gray Gaulding, 17.908 seconds, 100.514 mph, Oct. 26, 2013.
150-lap Race Record: Greg Pursley, 1 hour 10 minutes 46 seconds, 63.589 mph, Oct. 26, 2013.

Category Leaders at Kern:
Wins
Greg Pursley. … 2
Dylan Lupton … 1
Dalton Sargeant … 1
Todd Gilliland … 1

Poles
Greg Pursley … 2
Gray Gaulding … 1
Dalton Sargeant … 1
Todd Gilliland … 1

Laps Completed
David Mayhew … 764
John Wood … 494
James Bickford … 465
Johnny Borneman III … 460
Dylan Lupton … 455
Greg Pursley … 455

Laps Led
Greg Pursley … 338
David Mayhew … 146
Dalton Sargeant … 75
Gray Gaulding … 59
Todd Gilliland … 54
Ryan Partridge … 45
Jesse Little … 26
Johnny Borneman III … 20

Irwindale Data:
Race: #3 and #4 of 14 overall
Race Date: Saturday, March 25, 7 p.m. PT
Air date: Saturday, April 1 at 7 p.m. & 8 p.m. ET/4 p.m. & 5 p.m. PT
Track Layout: .500-mile banked asphalt oval
Banking/Corners: Progressive, between 6-12 degrees
Race Length: 100 laps (50 miles)/100 laps (50 miles)

Qualifying/Race Data:
2016 Winner: Todd Gilliland
2016 Pole Sitter: Todd Gilliland
1-lap Qualifying Record: Butch Gilliland, 17.871 seconds, 100.722 mph, June 19, 1999.
100-lap Race Record: N/A

Category Leaders at Irwindale:
Wins
Austin Cameron … 5
Jason Bowles … 3
Brendan Gaughan … 3
Bobby Dotter … 2
Steven Portenga … 2
Nine different drivers … 1

Poles
Jason Bowles … 3
Austin Cameron … 2
Mike Duncan … 2
Eric Holmes … 2
Scott Lynch … 2
Greg Pursley … 2
Sean Woodside … 2
Nine different drivers … 1

Laps Completed
Johnny Borneman … 3,353
Brett Thompson … 3,108
Austin Cameron … 2,922
Steve Portenga … 2,759
Scott Gaylord … 2,712
Jack Sellers … 2,590

Laps Led
Brendan Gaughan … 674
Jason Bowles … 406
Austin Cameron … 404
Steve Portenga … 257
Scott Lynch … 206
Greg Pursley … 206

Selected Driver Highlights:
Garret Archer (No. 27 Recruit 4 Business Ford)
• Finished a career-best third in the season opener at Tucson.
• Has made only two career K&N West starts and has never competed at Kern or Irwindale.

Nicole Behar (No. 33 Custom Welding & Fabrication Toyota)
• Finished 10th in the season opener at Tucson last week.
• Posted a career best finish of second at Irwindale in 2015.
• Finished 21st in only career attempt at Kern.

Chris Eggleston (No. 99 NAPA Filters Toyota)
• Has six career K&N West wins with 20 top fives and 23 top 10s in 32 career starts.
• Was the 2015 series champion as a rookie for Bill McAnally Racing.
• Won the season opener at Tucson after leading a race-high 80 laps.
• Has finished fifth in each of his two career starts at Kern, where he’s never started worse than third.
• Has one career win at Irwindale in two starts, having finished third at the track last year.

Todd Gilliland (No. 16 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota)
• Won six of 14 races last season with 11 top fives and 13 top 10s en route to the K&N West championship, becoming the youngest champion in NASCAR touring series history at 16 years, five months, and joined his grandfather Butch Gilliland as a K&N West champion (1997).
• Finished second in the season opener at Tucson.
• Won the pole and the race last season in his only career start at Kern.
• Also won the pole and the race last season in his only career start at Irwindale.
• Plans to run both the K&N West and K&N East schedules in 2017.

Julia Landauer (No. 6 Lucas Oil/Eibach/Sunrise Ford)
• Finished fourth in the final standings last season to become the highest finishing female driver in K&N West history.
• Finished 12th in the season opener at Tucson.
• Finished 10th last season at Kern in her only career start at the track.
• Finished eighth at Irwindale in 2016 in her debut at the track.

Derek Kraus (No. 19 Carlyle Tools Toyota)
• Made his his K&N Pro Series debut with the East at New Smyrna and finished third, following that effort with a sixth-place finish in the West season opener at Tucson.
• Has never competed at either Kern or Irwindale.

Will Rodgers (No. 7 Solvang Brewing Company Ford)
• Competed in six races a year ago and will run for K&N West Rookie of the Year this season.
• Finished a career-best sixth in the season opener at Tucson.
• Has never competed at either Kern or Irwindale.

Up To Speed:
• The 2017 season is the 64th for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West.
• The 2017 schedule features 14 races at 12 different tracks across the United States.
• Third-generation driver Todd Gilliland won the season opener last year at Irwindale Speedway, the first of two straight wins to open the year.
• This marks the first year that Irwindale will host two, separate events on the same night for the K&N Pro Series West.

 

K&N West News & Notes: Kern & Irwindale

K&N West News & Notes: Kern & Irwindale

Teams Look to Hit Stride With Three Races In Three Days

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Just five days after kicking off the 2017 season at Tucson Speedway, NASCAR K&N Pro Series West teams will be put to the test with three races in a three-day span to close out the NAPA 500 Challenge series.

The series heads to Kern County Raceway Park in Bakersfield, California, for the NAPA Auto Parts 150 on Thursday, March 23, before rolling to Irwindale Speedway in Irwindale, California, for the NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s on Saturday, March 25. The Twin 100s will stand as two separate points-paying events.

2015 K&N West champion Chris Eggleston got his season started on the right foot, holding off his Bill McAnally Racing teammate Todd Gilliland — last season’s series champion — to win at Tucson on Saturday. If he can sweep the tripleheader this week, he would earn the $100,00 prize that comes with capturing all four legs of the NAPA 500 Challenge.

It won’t be easy for Eggleston. Gilliland led 70 of the 150 laps at Tucson after winning the pole for the season opener. Rookie Garrett Archer, in a Jefferson Pitts Racing Ford, was a strong contender at Tucson, Zane Smith and Will Rodgers. Of the drivers entered at Kern and Irwindale, only Eggleston and Gilliland have won races at either track.

RACE CENTRAL LIVE: EVENT SCHEDULE & ENTRY LIST

RACE CENTRAL LIVE: EVENT SCHEDULE & ENTRY LIST

FAST FACTS:
The Races: NAPA Auto Parts 150 and the NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s will be the second, third and fourth of 14 races on the 2017 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West schedule. 

The Procedures: For all three events, the maximum starting field is 26 cars, including provisionals. The first 22 cars will secure starting positions based on the group qualifying process. The remaining four spots will be awarded through the provisional process. At Kern, the race will be 150 laps (75 miles) with a five minute break occurring at or near the conclusion of lap 75. At Irwindale, following the conclusion of the first 100-lap race, there will be an approximately 90-minute break for teams to prepare for the second event and get through pre-race technical inspection.

NAPA 500 Challenge: The NAPA Auto Parts 150 at Kern is the second race in a four-race “NAPA 500 Challenge Series.” With the K&N West competing in four events over an eight-day stretch to begin the season, NAPA is offering a $100,000 bonus to any driver to win all four races. $10,000 will be given to any driver who can finish in the top 3 in all four events; $5,000 to any driver finishing in the top 5 in all four; and $1,000 to a driver who finishes in the top 10 in all of them. The series finishes with the Twin 100s at Irwindale on Saturday.

The Tracks: Kern County Raceway Park sits on 120 acres and opened on May 18, 2013 with a NASCAR Whelen All-American Series event. It’s a half-mile oval with progressive banking of 12 to 14 degrees in turns and eight degrees on the front and backstretches. Irwindale Speedway is a half-mile paved oval with progressive banking of between six and 12 degrees in the corners and six degrees in the straights. Located in the San Gabriel Valley, Irwindale is just 25 minutes from downtown Los Angeles and features multiple racing configurations with half-mile and third-mile ovals along with a 1/8-mile drag strip.

Race Winners: There have been four different winners in the five previous K&N West races at Kern. Greg Pursley, the only repeat winner at the track, won the first two races held there. Todd Gilliland, winner of last year’s race at the track, is the only active driver with a win at Kern. There have been 14 different winners in the previous 24 races at Irwindale, with Austin Cameron owning five career wins at the track. NASCAR XFINITY Series driver Brendan Gaughan and Jason Bowles each have three wins there.

Pole Winners: There have been four different pole winners in the five previous races at Kern, with Greg Pursley winning two of them. At Irwindale, there have been 15 different pole winners in 24 previous races. Jason Bowles won three poles, while six drivers all have two.

Teamwork: The two most recent champions in the K&N Pro Series West, Bill McAnally Racing teammates Chris Eggleston and Todd Gilliland, were the class of the field in the season-opening event at Tucson Speedway. Eggleston was fastest in practice, Gilliland won the pole and the two drivers started on the front row, led all the laps and were running first and second at the checkered flag. Teammate Derek Kraus finished sixth. As they head into the three events this week, history is also on their side. Of all active drivers in the series, only Eggleston (Kern) and Gilliland (Kern, Irwindale) have wins at either of the two tracks

Rookie Roll Call: Series rookies finished in positions three through eight at Tucson. Garrett Archer, Zane Smith and Will Rodgers finished in the top five, with Kraus, Brandon Schilling and Kody Vanderwal finishing behind that trio. Archer’s third-place finish came in only his second career series start. The learning curve will be steep this week: None of that impressive rookie crop has ever made a start at either Kern or Irwindale.

Right Direction: Blaine Perkins has never finished in the top 15 at either Kern or Irwindale, but he’s coming off a solid 11th-place showing at Tucson and he has some history on his side at Irwindale. Crew chief and car owner Steve Portenga has two career wins at Irwindale as a driver, including the inaugural K&N West race at the track in 1999. Over the two wins, the second of which came in 2005, Portenga led 150 of the 400 laps he completed.

K&N West Stat Advance: Kern & Irwindale

K&N West Stat Advance: Kern & Irwindale

Analyzing the NAPA Auto Parts 150 & NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West will hold three races in three days with the NAPA Auto Parts 150 at Kern County Raceway Park in Bakersfield, California, on Thursday, March 23, and the NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s at Irwindale Speedway in Irwindale, California, on Saturday, March 25. Below is a look at the three events and some of the selected participants.

NAPA Auto Parts 150 Race Setup: 
• For the sixth time in history, Kern will host the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West after opening in 2013.
• Chris Eggleston of Erie, Colorado, holds the series point lead after winning the season-opening event last week in Tucson over Bill McAnally Racing teammate Todd Gilliland.
• Gilliland won the race at Kern from the pole last season.
• If Eggleston can win the NAPA Auto Parts 150, he will be halfway to winning the $100,000 NAPA 500 Challenge Series.

NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s Race Setup: 
• The K&N Pro Series West will hold two 100-lap events at Irwindale, with each standing as a separate points-paying event.
• Todd Gilliland won the only race at Irwindale in 2016, the season opener, to become the sixth different winner at the track over the last six races there.
• The races are the final two races in the NAPA 500 Challenge Series, which promises a $100,000 bonus to the driver who can win all four races to begin the season.

At Kern County Raceway Park:
History:
• Kern County opened in 2013 with a NASCAR Whelen All-American Series event.
• The track has held one K&N West race each year since its opening, with the lone exception being the 2014 season when it held two races.
• Greg Pursley is the only repeat winner at Kern.

At Irwindale Speedway:
History:
• Irwindale Speedway opened in March 1999 and has capacity for 6,500 spectators.
• The facility is in the San Gabriel Valley of Southern California and is just 25 minutes from downtown Los Angeles.
• There are multiple racing configurations available with half-mile and third-mile ovals along with a 1/8-mile drag strip.
• The half-mile track was home to the NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown, a special non-points event for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series and NASCAR Whelen All-American Series, from 2003-11.

Kern & Irwindale Notebook:
• This is the series’ sixth event at Kern and the 25th race in its history at Irwindale.
• Four different drivers have won at Kern, with Greg Pursley winning twice.
• Fourteen different drivers have won at Irwindale, led by Austin Cameron with five wins.
• Four different drivers have won the pole at Kern, led by Pursley’s two, and three times the race has been won from the pole.
• Fifteen different drivers, led by Jason Bowles with three, have won the pole at Irwindale.
• Nine different drivers, led by Butch Gilliland with five, have earned the pole award at Irwindale.

Kern Data:
Race: #2 of 14 overall
Race Date: Thursday, March 23, 7:45 p.m. PT
Air date: Tuesday, March 28 at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT
Track Layout: .500-mile banked asphalt oval
Banking/Corners: Progressive, between 12-14 degrees
Banking/Straights: 8 degrees
Race Length: 150 laps (75 miles)

Qualifying/Race Data:
2016 Winner: Todd Gilliland
2016 Pole Sitter: Todd Gilliland
1-lap Qualifying Record: Gray Gaulding, 17.908 seconds, 100.514 mph, Oct. 26, 2013.
150-lap Race Record: Greg Pursley, 1 hour 10 minutes 46 seconds, 63.589 mph, Oct. 26, 2013.

Category Leaders at Kern:
Wins
Greg Pursley. … 2
Dylan Lupton … 1
Dalton Sargeant … 1
Todd Gilliland … 1

Poles
Greg Pursley … 2
Gray Gaulding … 1
Dalton Sargeant … 1
Todd Gilliland … 1

Laps Completed
David Mayhew … 764
John Wood … 494
James Bickford … 465
Johnny Borneman III … 460
Dylan Lupton … 455
Greg Pursley … 455

Laps Led
Greg Pursley … 338
David Mayhew … 146
Dalton Sargeant … 75
Gray Gaulding … 59
Todd Gilliland … 54
Ryan Partridge … 45
Jesse Little … 26
Johnny Borneman III … 20

Irwindale Data:
Race: #3 and #4 of 14 overall
Race Date: Saturday, March 25, 7 p.m. PT
Air date: Saturday, April 1 at 7 p.m. & 8 p.m. ET/4 p.m. & 5 p.m. PT
Track Layout: .500-mile banked asphalt oval
Banking/Corners: Progressive, between 6-12 degrees
Race Length: 100 laps (50 miles)/100 laps (50 miles)

Qualifying/Race Data:
2016 Winner: Todd Gilliland
2016 Pole Sitter: Todd Gilliland
1-lap Qualifying Record: Butch Gilliland, 17.871 seconds, 100.722 mph, June 19, 1999.
100-lap Race Record: N/A

Category Leaders at Irwindale:
Wins
Austin Cameron … 5
Jason Bowles … 3
Brendan Gaughan … 3
Bobby Dotter … 2
Steven Portenga … 2
Nine different drivers … 1

Poles
Jason Bowles … 3
Austin Cameron … 2
Mike Duncan … 2
Eric Holmes … 2
Scott Lynch … 2
Greg Pursley … 2
Sean Woodside … 2
Nine different drivers … 1

Laps Completed
Johnny Borneman … 3,353
Brett Thompson … 3,108
Austin Cameron … 2,922
Steve Portenga … 2,759
Scott Gaylord … 2,712
Jack Sellers … 2,590

Laps Led
Brendan Gaughan … 674
Jason Bowles … 406
Austin Cameron … 404
Steve Portenga … 257
Scott Lynch … 206
Greg Pursley … 206

Selected Driver Highlights:
Garret Archer (No. 27 Recruit 4 Business Ford)
• Finished a career-best third in the season opener at Tucson.
• Has made only two career K&N West starts and has never competed at Kern or Irwindale.

Nicole Behar (No. 33 Custom Welding & Fabrication Toyota)
• Finished 10th in the season opener at Tucson last week.
• Posted a career best finish of second at Irwindale in 2015.
• Finished 21st in only career attempt at Kern.

Chris Eggleston (No. 99 NAPA Filters Toyota)
• Has six career K&N West wins with 20 top fives and 23 top 10s in 32 career starts.
• Was the 2015 series champion as a rookie for Bill McAnally Racing.
• Won the season opener at Tucson after leading a race-high 80 laps.
• Has finished fifth in each of his two career starts at Kern, where he’s never started worse than third.
• Has one career win at Irwindale in two starts, having finished third at the track last year.

Todd Gilliland (No. 16 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota)
• Won six of 14 races last season with 11 top fives and 13 top 10s en route to the K&N West championship, becoming the youngest champion in NASCAR touring series history at 16 years, five months, and joined his grandfather Butch Gilliland as a K&N West champion (1997).
• Finished second in the season opener at Tucson.
• Won the pole and the race last season in his only career start at Kern.
• Also won the pole and the race last season in his only career start at Irwindale.
• Plans to run both the K&N West and K&N East schedules in 2017.

Julia Landauer (No. 6 Lucas Oil/Eibach/Sunrise Ford)
• Finished fourth in the final standings last season to become the highest finishing female driver in K&N West history.
• Finished 12th in the season opener at Tucson.
• Finished 10th last season at Kern in her only career start at the track.
• Finished eighth at Irwindale in 2016 in her debut at the track.

Derek Kraus (No. 19 Carlyle Tools Toyota)
• Made his his K&N Pro Series debut with the East at New Smyrna and finished third, following that effort with a sixth-place finish in the West season opener at Tucson.
• Has never competed at either Kern or Irwindale.

Will Rodgers (No. 7 Solvang Brewing Company Ford)
• Competed in six races a year ago and will run for K&N West Rookie of the Year this season.
• Finished a career-best sixth in the season opener at Tucson.
• Has never competed at either Kern or Irwindale.

Up To Speed:
• The 2017 season is the 64th for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West.
• The 2017 schedule features 14 races at 12 different tracks across the United States.
• Third-generation driver Todd Gilliland won the season opener last year at Irwindale Speedway, the first of two straight wins to open the year.
• This marks the first year that Irwindale will host two, separate events on the same night for the K&N Pro Series West.

 

K&N West News & Notes: Kern & Irwindale

K&N West News & Notes: Kern & Irwindale

Teams Look to Hit Stride With Three Races In Three Days

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Just five days after kicking off the 2017 season at Tucson Speedway, NASCAR K&N Pro Series West teams will be put to the test with three races in a three-day span to close out the NAPA 500 Challenge series.

The series heads to Kern County Raceway Park in Bakersfield, California, for the NAPA Auto Parts 150 on Thursday, March 23, before rolling to Irwindale Speedway in Irwindale, California, for the NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s on Saturday, March 25. The Twin 100s will stand as two separate points-paying events.

2015 K&N West champion Chris Eggleston got his season started on the right foot, holding off his Bill McAnally Racing teammate Todd Gilliland — last season’s series champion — to win at Tucson on Saturday. If he can sweep the tripleheader this week, he would earn the $100,00 prize that comes with capturing all four legs of the NAPA 500 Challenge.

It won’t be easy for Eggleston. Gilliland led 70 of the 150 laps at Tucson after winning the pole for the season opener. Rookie Garrett Archer, in a Jefferson Pitts Racing Ford, was a strong contender at Tucson, Zane Smith and Will Rodgers. Of the drivers entered at Kern and Irwindale, only Eggleston and Gilliland have won races at either track.

RACE CENTRAL LIVE: EVENT SCHEDULE & ENTRY LIST

RACE CENTRAL LIVE: EVENT SCHEDULE & ENTRY LIST

FAST FACTS:
The Races: NAPA Auto Parts 150 and the NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s will be the second, third and fourth of 14 races on the 2017 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West schedule. 

The Procedures: For all three events, the maximum starting field is 26 cars, including provisionals. The first 22 cars will secure starting positions based on the group qualifying process. The remaining four spots will be awarded through the provisional process. At Kern, the race will be 150 laps (75 miles) with a five minute break occurring at or near the conclusion of lap 75. At Irwindale, following the conclusion of the first 100-lap race, there will be an approximately 90-minute break for teams to prepare for the second event and get through pre-race technical inspection.

NAPA 500 Challenge: The NAPA Auto Parts 150 at Kern is the second race in a four-race “NAPA 500 Challenge Series.” With the K&N West competing in four events over an eight-day stretch to begin the season, NAPA is offering a $100,000 bonus to any driver to win all four races. $10,000 will be given to any driver who can finish in the top 3 in all four events; $5,000 to any driver finishing in the top 5 in all four; and $1,000 to a driver who finishes in the top 10 in all of them. The series finishes with the Twin 100s at Irwindale on Saturday.

The Tracks: Kern County Raceway Park sits on 120 acres and opened on May 18, 2013 with a NASCAR Whelen All-American Series event. It’s a half-mile oval with progressive banking of 12 to 14 degrees in turns and eight degrees on the front and backstretches. Irwindale Speedway is a half-mile paved oval with progressive banking of between six and 12 degrees in the corners and six degrees in the straights. Located in the San Gabriel Valley, Irwindale is just 25 minutes from downtown Los Angeles and features multiple racing configurations with half-mile and third-mile ovals along with a 1/8-mile drag strip.

Race Winners: There have been four different winners in the five previous K&N West races at Kern. Greg Pursley, the only repeat winner at the track, won the first two races held there. Todd Gilliland, winner of last year’s race at the track, is the only active driver with a win at Kern. There have been 14 different winners in the previous 24 races at Irwindale, with Austin Cameron owning five career wins at the track. NASCAR XFINITY Series driver Brendan Gaughan and Jason Bowles each have three wins there.

Pole Winners: There have been four different pole winners in the five previous races at Kern, with Greg Pursley winning two of them. At Irwindale, there have been 15 different pole winners in 24 previous races. Jason Bowles won three poles, while six drivers all have two.

Teamwork: The two most recent champions in the K&N Pro Series West, Bill McAnally Racing teammates Chris Eggleston and Todd Gilliland, were the class of the field in the season-opening event at Tucson Speedway. Eggleston was fastest in practice, Gilliland won the pole and the two drivers started on the front row, led all the laps and were running first and second at the checkered flag. Teammate Derek Kraus finished sixth. As they head into the three events this week, history is also on their side. Of all active drivers in the series, only Eggleston (Kern) and Gilliland (Kern, Irwindale) have wins at either of the two tracks

Rookie Roll Call: Series rookies finished in positions three through eight at Tucson. Garrett Archer, Zane Smith and Will Rodgers finished in the top five, with Kraus, Brandon Schilling and Kody Vanderwal finishing behind that trio. Archer’s third-place finish came in only his second career series start. The learning curve will be steep this week: None of that impressive rookie crop has ever made a start at either Kern or Irwindale.

Right Direction: Blaine Perkins has never finished in the top 15 at either Kern or Irwindale, but he’s coming off a solid 11th-place showing at Tucson and he has some history on his side at Irwindale. Crew chief and car owner Steve Portenga has two career wins at Irwindale as a driver, including the inaugural K&N West race at the track in 1999. Over the two wins, the second of which came in 2005, Portenga led 150 of the 400 laps he completed.

K&N West News & Notes: Kern & Irwindale

K&N West News & Notes: Kern & Irwindale

Teams Look to Hit Stride With Three Races In Three Days

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Just five days after kicking off the 2017 season at Tucson Speedway, NASCAR K&N Pro Series West teams will be put to the test with three races in a three-day span to close out the NAPA 500 Challenge series.

The series heads to Kern County Raceway Park in Bakersfield, California, for the NAPA Auto Parts 150 on Thursday, March 23, before rolling to Irwindale Speedway in Irwindale, California, for the NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s on Saturday, March 25. The Twin 100s will stand as two separate points-paying events.

2015 K&N West champion Chris Eggleston got his season started on the right foot, holding off his Bill McAnally Racing teammate Todd Gilliland — last season’s series champion — to win at Tucson on Saturday. If he can sweep the tripleheader this week, he would earn the $100,00 prize that comes with capturing all four legs of the NAPA 500 Challenge.

It won’t be easy for Eggleston. Gilliland led 70 of the 150 laps at Tucson after winning the pole for the season opener. Rookie Garrett Archer, in a Jefferson Pitts Racing Ford, was a strong contender at Tucson, Zane Smith and Will Rodgers. Of the drivers entered at Kern and Irwindale, only Eggleston and Gilliland have won races at either track.

RACE CENTRAL LIVE: EVENT SCHEDULE & ENTRY LIST

RACE CENTRAL LIVE: EVENT SCHEDULE & ENTRY LIST

FAST FACTS:
The Races: NAPA Auto Parts 150 and the NAPA Auto Parts Twin 100s will be the second, third and fourth of 14 races on the 2017 NASCAR K&N Pro Series West schedule. 

The Procedures: For all three events, the maximum starting field is 26 cars, including provisionals. The first 22 cars will secure starting positions based on the group qualifying process. The remaining four spots will be awarded through the provisional process. At Kern, the race will be 150 laps (75 miles) with a five minute break occurring at or near the conclusion of lap 75. At Irwindale, following the conclusion of the first 100-lap race, there will be an approximately 90-minute break for teams to prepare for the second event and get through pre-race technical inspection.

NAPA 500 Challenge: The NAPA Auto Parts 150 at Kern is the second race in a four-race “NAPA 500 Challenge Series.” With the K&N West competing in four events over an eight-day stretch to begin the season, NAPA is offering a $100,000 bonus to any driver to win all four races. $10,000 will be given to any driver who can finish in the top 3 in all four events; $5,000 to any driver finishing in the top 5 in all four; and $1,000 to a driver who finishes in the top 10 in all of them. The series finishes with the Twin 100s at Irwindale on Saturday.

The Tracks: Kern County Raceway Park sits on 120 acres and opened on May 18, 2013 with a NASCAR Whelen All-American Series event. It’s a half-mile oval with progressive banking of 12 to 14 degrees in turns and eight degrees on the front and backstretches. Irwindale Speedway is a half-mile paved oval with progressive banking of between six and 12 degrees in the corners and six degrees in the straights. Located in the San Gabriel Valley, Irwindale is just 25 minutes from downtown Los Angeles and features multiple racing configurations with half-mile and third-mile ovals along with a 1/8-mile drag strip.

Race Winners: There have been four different winners in the five previous K&N West races at Kern. Greg Pursley, the only repeat winner at the track, won the first two races held there. Todd Gilliland, winner of last year’s race at the track, is the only active driver with a win at Kern. There have been 14 different winners in the previous 24 races at Irwindale, with Austin Cameron owning five career wins at the track. NASCAR XFINITY Series driver Brendan Gaughan and Jason Bowles each have three wins there.

Pole Winners: There have been four different pole winners in the five previous races at Kern, with Greg Pursley winning two of them. At Irwindale, there have been 15 different pole winners in 24 previous races. Jason Bowles won three poles, while six drivers all have two.

Teamwork: The two most recent champions in the K&N Pro Series West, Bill McAnally Racing teammates Chris Eggleston and Todd Gilliland, were the class of the field in the season-opening event at Tucson Speedway. Eggleston was fastest in practice, Gilliland won the pole and the two drivers started on the front row, led all the laps and were running first and second at the checkered flag. Teammate Derek Kraus finished sixth. As they head into the three events this week, history is also on their side. Of all active drivers in the series, only Eggleston (Kern) and Gilliland (Kern, Irwindale) have wins at either of the two tracks

Rookie Roll Call: Series rookies finished in positions three through eight at Tucson. Garrett Archer, Zane Smith and Will Rodgers finished in the top five, with Kraus, Brandon Schilling and Kody Vanderwal finishing behind that trio. Archer’s third-place finish came in only his second career series start. The learning curve will be steep this week: None of that impressive rookie crop has ever made a start at either Kern or Irwindale.

Right Direction: Blaine Perkins has never finished in the top 15 at either Kern or Irwindale, but he’s coming off a solid 11th-place showing at Tucson and he has some history on his side at Irwindale. Crew chief and car owner Steve Portenga has two career wins at Irwindale as a driver, including the inaugural K&N West race at the track in 1999. Over the two wins, the second of which came in 2005, Portenga led 150 of the 400 laps he completed.

Race Central Live: Irwindale

NAPA Auto Parts Twins 100 at Irwindale Event Center

RACE PREVIEW: NEWS & NOTES | STAT ADVANCE | TRACK PAGE

EVENT LINKS: EVENT SCHEDULE | ENTRY LIST | PRACTICE RESULTS | QUALIFYING RESULTS | RACE RESULTS

Race Central Live: Kern

NAPA Auto Parts 150 at Kern County Raceway Park

RACE PREVIEW: NEWS & NOTES | STAT ADVANCE | TRACK PAGE

EVENT LINKS: EVENT SCHEDULE ENTRY LIST | PRACTICE RESULTS | QUALIFYING RESULTS | RACE RESULTS

Eggleston Victorious At Tucson Speedway

Eggleston Victorious At Tucson Speedway

Earns First K&N Pro West Win of 2017 After A Late Race Pass

Tucson, Ariz. – It was a back-and-forth battle all day, but Chris Eggleston came out on top at Tucson Speedway.

Leading 80 of 150 laps in the NAPA Auto Parts Tucson 150, Eggleston beat pole-sitter and defending NASCAR K&N Pro Series West champion, Todd Gilliland, to the line to take his sixth career NASCAR K&N Pro Series West victory with his No. 99 NAPA Filters Toyota.

The 27-year-old from Erie, Colorado native, said he stepped up his game for the second half of the event and is grateful to start the 2017 season off in Victory Lane after a doubtful off-season.

In a way, the same can be said for second-place finisher Gilliland. Leading a total of 70 laps throughout the night, the 16-year-old from Sherrills Ford, North Carolina, and his No. 16 NAPA Auto Parts Toyota held off the pack on numerous late restarts to bring it home in the runner-up position for the second straight year at Tucson. The result also continues a streak of nine consecutive top-10 finishes for the NASCAR Next driver.

One of the drivers Gilliland had to hold off was 20-year-old Garrett Archer. In only his second K&N West start, the Maple Valley, Washington, driver jumped his No. 27 Recruit 4 Business Ford to the outside lane on the final restart, advancing from sixth to second until Gilliland re-passed him for the spot. Still, a third-place result is a positive way to kick off the year, he says.

In what was a relatively clean night of racing, there were still a handful of single-car spins that halted the action. Salvatore Iovino, who spun in final practice earlier in the day, continued to struggle with the car’s handling, losing his No. 38 Infinite Wireless Chevrolet on three occasions in the 150-lapper.

He was not the only one, as Riley Herbst and Rich DeLong III also lost their cars on each end of the track.

On the positive end, Zane Smith came home with a top-five finish in fourth followed by Will Rodgers in fifth, while Derek Kraus, Brandon Schilling, Kody Vanderwal and Nicole Behar rounded out top 10.

Eggleston’s victory at Tucson, also put him in the position to win $100,000. As a part of the NAPA 500 Challenge, should a driver win all four races, they will take home the steep money bonus.

The NASCAR K&N Pro Series West will be back in action for race two of the NAPA 500 Challenge Thursday, March 23 at California’s Kern County Raceway Park.

RESULTS | RACE CENTRAL LIVE REPLAY


A late race pass over Bill McAnally Racing teammate Todd Gilliland secured the victory for Chris Eggleston and the No. 99 NAPA Filters Toyota. Chris Coduto/NASCAR via Getty Images

 

Solomito Charges Late For Myrtle Beach Win

Solomito Charges Late For Myrtle Beach Win

First Winner For Newly Unified Whelen Modified Tour

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. – One year ago, Timmy Solomito captured his first career NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour victory in the season-opening Icebreaker at Connecticut’s Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park. 

Fast-forward a year later, the Islip, New York, driver was celebrating a victory in the season-opening race once again. This time, the win came in South Carolina.

Solomito captured the win in the Performance Plus 150 presented by Safety-Kleen on Saturday at another historic venue, the half-mile Myrtle Beach Speedway, and became the first winner on the newly formed unified Whelen Modified Tour. 

Solomito’s No. 16 Starrett Tools Ford took the lead for the final time following a late-race caution that setup the final restart and held off Rob Summers on a green-white-checkered finish to take down the victory. The win was Solomito’s fifth career on the tour after his breakout 2016. 

“My team did a great job,” said Solomito. “We knew we had to ride and save our stuff as much as possible for the end of the race. I knew the last five laps we had to run as hard as possible and my team gave me a car good enough to do that.”

Rob Summers, who scored his first Coors Light Pole Award since 2001 earlier in the day, led a race-high 72 laps but came up just short of the victory with a second place finish behind the wheel of his No. 64 Fastrock Electric Chevrolet. 

Andy Seuss made a late charge to finish third after spinning just after the halfway point. Ryan Preece was also able to climb to the front late and finish fourth, with Max Zachem rounding out the top five.

Justin Bonsignore was sixth, followed by Rowan Pennink – who led 38 laps  Woody Pitkat, Les Hinckley III and Burt Myers.

The race was slowed by eight cautions, with four coming in the final 30 laps, including one on Lap 145 and a subsequent one on Lap 148 that winnowed the field and took out several contenders. The final yellow pushed the race to 155 laps.

In the offseason, NASCAR unified the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and NASCAR Whelen Southern Modified Tour into one tour that stretches from New Hampshire to South Carolina.

The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour returns to the track at Thompson for the Icebreaker 150 on Sunday, April 2. 

RESULTS | RACE CENTRAL LIVE REPLAY

nwmt_myrtle-beach_timmy-solomito_car_031817

Timmy Solomito led the final eight laps en route to winning the Performance Plus 150 at Myrtle Beach (S.C.) Speedway. Adam Glanzman/NASCAR

Qualifying: Gilliland Wins Pole At Tucson

Qualifying: Gilliland Wins Pole At Tucson

Earns Top Spot For K&N Pro West Opener

Tucson, Ariz – Todd Gilliland wins the pole for Saturday’s NAPA Auto Parts 150 at Tucson Speedway.

The pole is the seventh of his NASCAR K&N Pro Series West career and first at Tucson.

However, judging from practice speeds, you can call this a surprise result.

Sweeping both practice sessions, Chris Eggleston was out-paced by the reigning West Series champion, who turned the quickest time of the day at 16.064 seconds [84.039 mph]. Eggleston could only manage a 16.136, which lines him up second for the race.

Derek Kraus, Zane Smith and Ron Norman complete the top five.

In a group qualifying session, which saw three groups of eight drivers turn laps with five minutes on the table, Julia Landauer was the quickest car leading into the final segment of drivers. Her No. 6 will line up seventh followed by Will Rodgers, Matt Levin and Blaine Perkins the top 10.

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