Linny White enjoyed winning in Las Vegas so much last year, he decided to double down (Photo credit: Jeff Speer).
The Fontana, Calif., driver passed Las Vegas’ Dustin Ash with 30 laps to go and held on after a caution and re-start with just five laps remaining to win his second consecutive Super Late Models 150 at the Senator’s Cup Fall Classic at The Bullring on Saturday night. White received a $15,000 first-place check in the Winner’s Circle from U.S. Senator Dean Heller of Nevada, a former Bullring competitor who was on-hand for the special event.
“There was a stacked field tonight, and for us to be standing here victorious, oh man, there ain’t nothing better,” White said. “This was a total different setup and totally different car and package than last year, so we were nervous coming in. They say, ‘Winner, winner, chicken dinner,’ so I guess we’re going to eat a chicken dinner tonight!”
Ash, a 55-time winner at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway short track, led after 50, 75 and 100 laps, but could not hold off the charging White down the stretch. Joey Bird of Spokane Valley, Wash., finished third, while Jeremy Doss of Upper Lake, Calif., took fourth.
Sen. Heller (R-Nev.) rode in the pace car, waved the green flag to start the Super Late Models 150 and presented the winner’s check and trophy during the special evening. He had a blast during his weekend trip to Las Vegas.
“I had a great time,” said Heller, who competed at The Bullring in the mid-2000s. “These drivers are incredible and did a good job tonight, and it was a good race. Anybody who was here saw a great race. We’re going to have one just as big next year, and we’re going to fill these stands.”
Not to be outdone, Eric Richardson was dominant in winning the Late Models 100, crossing the line .793 of a second ahead of last year’s winner Trevor Huddleston. Richardson was happy to get the win considering the amount of work his team had to put in on the car during the week.
“I’ve just got to thank all of my guys,” Richardson said. “We probably changed 15 springs and shocks, and the next thing to change was going to be the driver until we figured it out.”
Zach St. Onge of Upland, Calif., completed a weekend sweep in the South West Tour Trucks/Pro Trucks division, finishing more than eight seconds ahead of Ed Cutler in the 40-lap feature on Saturday night. The 14-year-old now has three Bullring victories in 2016.
“It’s great to get the sweep,” St. Onge said. “I’m blessed to be 14 and to be able to do this. I can’t wait until next year.”
Four-time track champion Peyton Saxton also went 2-for-2 over the weekend, sweeping the pair of 25-lap USLCI Legends features at the short track. Saxton had to earn it on Saturday night, edging fellow four-time track champion Jason Irwin by .290 of a second.
“This was a good race for us, and the car was dialed in,” Saxton said. “I just had to hit my marks, and I did that all night long and was able to get to the front. I was pretty nervous with Jason behind me, because we’ve been racing each other for a while now and know each other’s techniques and weaknesses.
“I think we just had a little better car than him tonight.”
Two-time Super Stocks track champion Jason Kiser took the lead from Joe DeGuevara midway through the division’s 50-lap feature and pulled away for a nearly seven-second victory. Kiser, who won his track titles from 2014-15, passed for the lead shortly before DeGuevara had to retire with engine trouble, and UNLV student Johnny Spilotro crossed the line in second place.
“It was a lot of fun, but it stinks it had to end that way,” said Kiser, who has won 20 races at The Bullring. “I saw some sparks coming out from under (DeGuevara’s) car, and it sounded like he was having engine failure. We’ve been struggling all weekend with a nasty push, so we made a few changes to the car after practice today, and I think we hit it just enough to get it.”
Las Vegas’ Robert Schumacher didn’t let an early race collision with Turn 1 keep him from crossing the line first in the 40-lap Bombers breakout race. He recovered from the crash to edge John Zaretzke by just .339 of a second to take the checkered flag on the special night.
“I’m a little shocked right now, and I was just trying to count the laps until the race was over,” Schumacher said. “We all had fun out there.”
Jesse Love out-dueled twin sisters Toni and Annie Bredinger in the 30-lap USAC HPD Midgets feature, crossing the line just .107 of a second ahead of Friday night winner Toni Bredinger. He was happy and out of breath after the big win.
“We barely had that one, and we had a crazy battle,” Love said. “We caught up to Toni, and she stuck her nose in a couple times. We just had to play a game of chicken and see who would (blink) first.”
Fresh off her 2016 USLCI Bandolero Outlaws track championship, Kayla Eshleman kept her winning ways going in the 20-lap combined Bandoleros feature. Eshleman, of Twin Peaks, Calif., won at the LVMS short track for the ninth time this season.
NEXT RACE: The Bullring’s 2016 season comes to a close with the West Coast Short Track Championships on Saturday, Nov. 19. The SRL Spears Southwest Tour Series and USAC HPD Midget Series will hold their championships, and fans can also enjoy the Lucas Oil Modifieds Shootout.