$5,000 Up for Grabs at this Saturday’s Johnny Key Classic!racepmg
Watsonville, CA – The prestigious Johnny Key Classic takes place for the 58th time this Saturday at Ocean Speedway. Five grand will go to the winner, with a nice payday of $400 going to drivers who simply take the green flag in the 50-lap feature. Stockton’s Brad Furr has looked like a man possessed lately as he has won the last two weekly Ocean Sprint features in impressive fashion and has a decent lead in the track championship. Justin Sanders was second at last week’s race and was the 2016 Johnny Key winner. Ryan Bernal of Hollister, Benicia’s Billy Aton, and Sacramento’s Kalib Henry completed the top five at last week’s weekly show. This Saturday’s race is the second as final showdown between the Civil War Sprint Car Series and the Ocean Sprints. Back at Night #1 of the Howard Kaeding Classic, it was Minden, Nevada’s Tanner Thorson grabbing the win. Paradise’s Kyle Hirst, Justin Sanders, Fremont’s Shane Golobic, and last year’s Johnny Key winner, Michael Kofoid of Penngrove completed the top five. Michael Kofoid barely hung on to the win at last year’s Key, holding off Auburn’s Andy Forsberg. Hanford’s DJ Netto, Justin Sanders, and Kyle Hirst were the top five finishers at last year’s Johnny Key Classic. Kofoid, unfortunately, will not have a chance to defend his title, as he is off to Ohio to compete there this weekend. As far as points go, Brad Furr as a 31 point lead over Fresno’s Koen Shaw in the track championship and Lemoore’s Cole Macedo has a 78 point lead over Gilroy’s Jarrett Soares in the Civil War Sprint Car Series championship.
The IMCA Western RaceSaver 305 Sprint Cars are back for their second appearance ever at Ocean Speedway. Back on July 27th, Visalia’s Blake Robertson picked up the win. Riverdale’s Grant Duinkerken, Clovis’ Kyle Rasmussen, and Brooklyn Holland and Robert Solomon, both of Fresno, completed the top five. Grant Duinkerken has a 35 point lead over Easton’s Albert Pombo in the series.
The IMCA SportMods are on the card for this Saturday’s race. Last Friday, Prunedale’s Igor Gandzjuk took his second career SportMod win and his first of 2018. Rookie Austin Williams of Gilroy came close once again to winning his first career feature, but looped it while leading the race and handing the win to Gandzjuk. Morgan Hill’s Anthony Giuliani, Brentwood’s Trevor Clymens, Jim DiGiovanni of Morgan Hill, and Atwater’s Jarrod Mounce completed the top five. Jim DiGiovanni has a 42 point lead over Austin Williams, which is more than a race’s worth.
The American Stocks are scheduled as well. Last week, JC Elrod of San Martin won a barnstormer of a race over Watsonville’s Jerry Skelton. Elrod had a tire go down on the very first lap, but a complete restart allowed his team enough time to make repairs and tag the tail of the field. Skelton led most of the race, but just didn’t have enough to fend off Elrod. Championship leader Matt Kile, John Farrell, and Robert Gallaher, all of San Jose, rounded out the top five. Gallaher had to resort to using his father Joe’s car after his own broke a distributor after the heat race. Matt Kile’s lead in the standings grew slightly to 8 points over Robert Gallaher, with JC Elrod in third, 35 points back.
Everybody is invited to the pre-race party to be held at the Taco Bravo location in Campbell on Friday, August 24th. The street address is 1950 S Bascom Ave, Campbell, CA 95008. Kurt Nelson, Brad Furr and his son, Freddie, Justin McPherson, and Adriane Frost will have their race cars on display. Things are scheduled to get underway at 5pm. Fans can buy their tickets ahead of time at the pre-race party to avoid the lines at the ticket booth on Saturday.
Pits are tentatively scheduled to open at 1pm and Grandstands will open at 3:30pm. Those that purchased tickets on Friday at the pre-race party will be allowed into the grandstands at 3:15pm. Pit passes are $40 for IMCA and track members and $45 for non-members. All seating is general admission and tickets cost $25 for adults and seniors. Juniors 12-15 are $12 and Kids 6-11 are $8 and Kids 5 and under are free.
Photo Credits to David Spencer.