Saturday, April 21, 2018

Kendall Oil Winged Sprint Car, SODCA Dwarf Car, OTRO Hardtops Previews

Southern Oregon Speedway Racing Discussion
Can Be Heard HERE

Kendall Oil Winged Sprints Offering Sprint Car Fans Hope For The Future At Southern Oregon Speedway

White City, Oregon...Once again, Sprint Car racing will be a big part of the racing program at Southern Oregon Speedway. In their third season with a championship point race, promoter Mike McCann is optimistic about a strong season of racing with several new drivers coming on board. Also helping the cause, in addition to sponsorship from Hays Oil, is Dave's Carpet And Vinyl Liquidators

Sprint Car racing has been a part of the racing program to one degree or another in every season at Southern Oregon Speedway. Sprint Car racers even had a hand in helping build the race track as a Limited Sprint racer volunteered his labor. Southern Oregon Speedway has had 15 championship seasons for the class and has had one race that went towards the championship of one series or another every year.

The big star in the early days was Dan Menne. Dan has won four championships, and nobody has won more Sprint Car Main Events at the track than he has. Bill Nutter, Chad Bauer, Randy Rogers and Charlie Thompson are among the other stars who have been a part of the racing program through the years. It could be argued that the biggest commitment management has ever shown to this division has come in the past couple of seasons, and this is poised to be the best season yet.

One of the biggest stars of Southern Oregon Sprint Car racing during the past six years or so is Kyler Barraza. Kyler was very consistent last season and used his three feature victories to clinch the championship before the season finale. His success at Southern Oregon Speedway during the 2013 and 2014 seasons helped earn him two Southern Oregon Sprint Car Tour championships. Kyler is recovering from a terrible crash in the Wingless Sprint Car race last August, but he is returning this year.

David Hibbard has racked up over 20 feature victories between Southern Oregon Speedway and Cottage Grove and is a past Cottage Grove Speedway champion. Though it seemed like he was headed for second in the standings last year, David graciously stepped out of the cockpit and allowed his son Bailey to compete against Marissa Henson to see who could earn the runner-up honors. Bailey looked strong all season long with three feature victories, but he lost second by just one point to last year's top rookie, Henson.

Both Hibbard's are a force to be reckoned with on the race track. David lost a heartbreaker of a race last year thanks to traffic and settled for one of his three second-place finishes, but he did have a victory as well. If he sets his sights on the championship, he will be tough to beat. However, David seems to be taking satisfaction from helping grow this division for the future. If there's somebody who could beat them all, it's David's rapidly improving son Bailey.

Like several of the younger drivers on the roster, Marissa Henson got her start on the adjacent Outlaw Kart track, rising through the ranks from the Beginners Box Stock class all the way to 500 Open Karts before setting her sights on the big track. Henson had a Top 5 season in Mini Stocks in 2016 before living her dream of finally getting to drive a Sprint Car last season. She is a quick study, a tough competitor and she shouldn't be counted out in this season's championship battle.

Likewise, Enrique Jaime has been a force on the Kart circuit, both dirt and pavement. Enrique made his move into the Sprint Cars last year and ended up fifth in the standings. He's part of the wave of young talent coming into Sprint Car racing, which gives Oregonians hope for the future of this division in the state.

One of the biggest stars of Kart racing over the past several seasons is Tanner Holmes. Holmes was crowned 500 Open Kart champion last season, and he also looked very impressive in his limited starts in a Sprint Car. Tanner will be getting more seat time this year, though he plans to compete in some of the bigger Kart races throughout the country on various occasions.

You can't talk about top notch talent without mentioning the name Mike Wheeler. Wheeler has racked up a resume of Kart championships that is second to nobody on the West Coast. This year, Mike is looking forward to making his return to Sprint Car racing. His nephew, Jake Wheeler, is rumored to be coming out to race at least some. The Wheeler family has been a part of Southern Oregon racing for many years, and Jake was the 2016 Winged Sprint Car champion at Southern Oregon Speedway.

1998 Cottage Grove Speedway champion Hedge Carter was competing at Southern Oregon Speedway on several occasions last year and was one of the Top 10 competitors. Not only is Hedge planning to continue racing, but son Colby Carter is now a part of the roster. Colby recently picked up a Top 10 finish at Cottage Grove.

Another of the rising stars of Sprint Car racing is Camden Robustelli. Camden has won multiple Main Events on the circuit and nearly scored a victory at Southern Oregon Speedway last year. He splits his time between Sprint Cars and Dwarf Cars, but we should still see him in a Sprint Car on multiple occasions.

The roster will see a few names from the past back in action again, starting with 2009 champion Charlie Thompson. Thompson made one appearance in 2016, resulting in a blown motor. Another driver who made one appearance in 2016 is Aaron Miller. Miller used that occasion to win his first Main Event. After having a Top 10 season in Antioch, California last year, Aaron is planning to race at Southern Oregon Speedway this year.

Another driver who was part of the 2016 roster, Todd Whipple, is also planning to return this year. Whipple is a past Top 5 IMCA Modified competitor in Yreka and a feature winner down there. Several cars are in various stages of repair, and a couple of big Sprint Car names from the past are rumored to be coming. We've also heard that second generation competitor Blaine Corey, who has raced at the Outlaw Kart Track in the past, will be a part of this season's show.

The Kendall Oil Winged Sprint Cars, presented by Hayes Oil and further sponsored by Dave's Carpet and Vinyl, has been booked for 11 events. It all starts with their first event on May 5th. One of the highlights will be the August 11th Ironhead Sprint Car Nationals, offering a $2,000 first prize. There's also the Second Annual Herz Precision Parts Cascade Wingless Sprint Car Challenge, offering $3,500 for the winner on August 25th.

Promoter Mike McCann has made a commitment to build up the Sprint Car program at Southern Oregon Speedway and is giving it more attention than perhaps it ever had at the track. Fans looking for their Sprint Car fix will find a good show every time the Kendell Oil Winged Sprint Cars are on the card. For further information, go to

2018 Southern Oregon Speedway Kendal Oil Winged Sprint Car Schedule
May 5
May 26 - Open Wheel Showcase
June 16
June 30
July 7
July 14
August 4
August 11 Iron Head Nationals
August 25 - Herz Precision Parts "Cascade Sprint Challenge" ($3500 To Win Non Wing)
September 8
September 22

2017 Kendall Oil Sprint Car Points
87 Kyler Barraza  267
17m Merissa Henson  231
1 Bailey Hibbard  230
3 David Hibbard  222
48e Enrique Jaime  179
25s Camden Robustelli  135
71 Hedge Carter 108
31 Calvin Hibbard  105
18t Tanner Holmes 77
21w Jake Wheeler 68

Past Sprint Car Champions
1996  Dan Menne
1997  Bill Nutter
1998  Dan Menne
2001  Chad Bauer
2002  Todd Zeitler
2003  Dan Menne
2004  T.J. Winningham
2005  Dan Menne
2006  Bill Nutter
2006  Randy Rodgers
2007  Randy Rodgers
2009  Charlie Thompson
2010  Chadd Noland
2011  Vern Wheeler Jr.
2013  Kyler Barraza*
2014  Kyler Barraza*
2016  Jake Wheeler
2017  Kyler Barraza
*  Medford-Coos Bay Series

Southern Oregon Speedway Winged Sprint Car All Time Win List
Dan Menne   30
Roger Crockett  12
Bill Nutter  10
David Hibbard  7
Kyler Barraza  6
Vern Wheeler Jr.  6
Chadd Noland  6
Brent Kaeding  6
Jason Finley 6
Randy Rodgers 5
Bailey Hibbard 4
Todd Zeitler 3
Danny Horner  3
Garen Linder  3
Chad Bauer 3
Kevin Cory 2
Jake Wheeler 2
Jonathan Allard  2
Lidsey Casto 2
Kyle Hirst  2
Tim Kaeding 2
Anthony Nunes 2
Cale Carder 2
Dale Smith 2
Jeff Swindell 2
Steve Kinser 2
Steve Vincent
Sean Fenn 1
Shane Steward 1
Shawna Wilskey 1
Eric Trask 1 
Bruce Gieg Jr. 1
Jared Ridge 1
Scott Adams 1
Jesse Hockett 1
Kyle Larson 1
Steven Tiner 1
Travis Rilat 1
Seth Bergman 1
Henry Van Dam 1
Jayme Barnes 1 
Lawrence Van Hoof 1
Matt Moberly 1
Rick Fauver 1
Andy Forsberg 1
Aaron Miller 1
Marvin Smith 1
Rico Abreu 1
Daryn Pittman 1
Seth Nunes 1
Colby Copeland 1
Willie Croft 1
Matt Menne 1
Trey Starks 1
Andy Gregg 1
Jake Waddell 1
Jeffrey Hudson 1
Tim Shaffer 1
Steve Kent 1
Ron Smith 1
Barry Martinez 1
Jay Smith 1
Brad Furr 1
Jeremy Lowe 1

Southern Oregon Dwarf Cars Set To Return 
To Southern Oregon Speedway

White City, Oregon...The Southern Oregon Dwarf Car Association returns to Southern Oregon Speedway 15 times this season, starting with the season opener on April 28th. The Dwarf Car division has had races every year in which the speedway has been in operation. During the first two seasons, it was the PHRA group from Northern Oregon making the visits. In 1998, SODCA was formed.

The big star in those early years was Jon DeBenedetti. DeBenedetti at times was quite dominant in winning three straight championships. One of his main competitors in the championship battle, Gary Fitzsimmons, won back-to-back championships after DeBenedetti's great run. There have been many stars of the Dwarf Car division, including two-time champions Kelly Gutches, RJ McGahuey and Josh King.

Last season, Brock Peters joined the Two-time Champions Club as he won a good battle with longtime Dwarf Car competitor Chad Cardoza and Ryan Smith for his second consecutive championship. Brock is poised to go for three in a row, but the competition will be tough. One of the people he needs to keep an eye on is his own son, Cody Peters, who finished fourth in the standings last season.

The SODCA Dwarf Car group plays host to the Western States Dwarf Car Nationals event on the first weekend of August. For years, some of the best drivers from throughout California, Nevada, Oregon and other states come to White City for the big event. However, it's usually one of those outsiders who leaves with the big victory. Last season, Cody Peters scored what some might call a major upset with his crowd-pleasing last-lap pass on NorCal Dwarf Car champion Danny Wagner for the victory.

At times, Brock Peters has been rather dominant in his M&M Chassis, and the scarier news is his son Cody is getting better with every start. However, Chad Cardoza and Ryan Smith are no slouches. Both drivers are multi time runner-ups in the championship chase, and neither driver should be counted out in this season's battle. These two drivers have been competing in Dwarf Cars for a long time, and either driver could have a huge season this year.

Just seeing long time competitor Fred Hay back behind the wheel of his car again last year was a good thing. In March of 2016, Fred was involved in a terrible crash at Silver Dollar Speedway in Chico, California. The wreck left him sidelined for the season, but he was determined not to let that be the end of his career. Fred has been competing in the Southern Oregon area in various divisions for six decades, and he is still capable of scoring wins in this competitive group.

Though he hasn't been around as long as some of the other competitors, Randy Slater has continued to improve. Randy is knocking on the door to his first career victory after having his career-best season last year in the Top 5. Slater is also the club president and works very hard to put together a good series for the group. Nowhere is this more evident than when Randy and his family work on putting all the touches that make the Western States Dwarf Car Nationals event in August such a success.

Just when you thought Kalvin Morton might move on to another division, the young gun picked up another Dwarf Car and ran the last few races with the group last season. He was a serious contender for the victory and he'll be somebody to watch in the quest for wins this year. Morton is also a multi time Top 5 ranked point competitor.

You also can't forget Josh King. King was the champion for the two seasons prior to Brock Peters taking over. During the past two seasons, Josh has cut back on his appearances, which has taken him out of championship contention. However, he has won several Main Events and is a threat to win anytime he is there.

Camden Robustelli Is also a major factor anytime he's on the race track. Last season, Robustelli won Main Events at four different venues, including the season opener at Southern Oregon Speedway. Camden likes to split his time between running a Dwarf Car and a Sprint Car, but he's another driver you can't ignore when he's racing with the Southern Oregon Dwarf Car group.

The season last year ended with a pair of surprise winners in Mason Lewman and Rob Gergel. It speaks to the competitive nature of the Dwarf Car division. You never know who could win on any given week, and the races are exciting from start to finish. At Southern Oregon Speedway, there were five different winners in the nine club point events last year.

The actual roster of available cars for the group stretches into the 30s, and some of the drivers to watch for include Joe Sanders, Jerry Hauck, Casey Sheeler, Steve Walker, Paul Haslow, Joe Winter, Mark Nielsen, and the father and son team of Bud and Jesse Lorenz. After selling his car to Mike Johnson, Anthony Pope has a new car. Johnson will be putting his son Michael, who is coming off of a runner-up season in Mini Stocks, behind the wheel. Rumor has it that Andrew Hall might also join the ranks, and we're still waiting for the debut of Kart star Ashley Strain.

The bottom line is the Southern Oregon Dwarf Car Association will bring the excitement In each of their visits. They are on the card for many of the big events, including the Western States Dwarf Car Association Nationals Event on August 3-4. You won't want to miss the big show. They are part of the track's season opener on April 28th. For further information, go to

2018 SODCA Dwarf Car Schedule
April 28
May 19
May 26
June 2
June 19
June 23
June 30
July 7
July 21
August 3 - WSDCA Nationals
August 4 - WSDCA Nationals
August 11
September 1 - Lon Skinner Memorial
September 2 - Lon Skinner Memorial
September 15

2017 Final SODCA Dwarf Car
2 Brock Peters 918
71 Chad Cardoza 897
26 Ryan Smith 886
30 Cody Peters 879
06 Randy Slater 861
10 Fred Hay 860
4 Joe Sanders 693
25 Camden Robustelli 687
17 Rob Gergel 564
95 Kaycee Sheeler 513

SODCA Dwarf Car Champions
1998  Jon DeBenedetti
1999  Jon DeBenedetti
2000  Jon DeBenedetti
2001  Gary Fitzsimmons
2002  Gary Fitzsimmons
2003  Dan Van Acker
2004  Crash Jackson
2005  Jerry Apland
2006  Tom Palazollo
2007  Jim Harsha
2008  Kelly Gutches
2009  Greg Denton
2010  Kelly Gutches
2011  R.J. McGahuey
2012  R.J. McGahuey
2013  C.J. Puttnam
2014  Josh King
2015  Josh King
2016  Brock Peters
2017  Brock Peters

SODCA Dwarf Car Southern Oregon Speedway All Time Win List
Jon DeBenedetti 32 
Josh King 25
Kelly Gutches 18
C.J. Putnam 12
R.J. McGahuey 10
Brock Peters 10
Dan Van Acker  9
Jeff Harsha 9 
Shawn Jones 6
Ryan Smith 6
Justin Hood 6
Crash Jackson 5
Greg Dentone 5  
Trevor Hukill  4
Camden Robustelli 4 
Gary Fitzsimmons 4
Curt Hunter 4
Jerry Apland 3
Chad Cardoza 3
Fred Hay 3
Steve Alberdi Jr. 2
Rick Harms 2
Glen Hester 2
Matt Sargent  2
Herman Pulyer 2
Joey Dale 2
Brandon Farquhar 2
Michael Goodson 2
Brad Boswell 2
Gilbert Toste 2
Mason Lewman 2
Cody Peters 2
Josh Wiesz 2
Kevin Bender 2
Doug McVae 2
Mitch Sheeler 2
Tom King 2
Howie Ross 2
Stan Cook 2
Henry Corbin II 1
Ben Wiesz 1
Kyle Resnick 1
Ed Starner 1
Tim Dunn 1
Tim Fitzpatrick 1
Eric Weisler 1
Bob Souza 1
Seth Wilson 1
Randy Shurts 1
Angel Figuroa 1
Kalvin Morton 1
Jerry Houck 1 
Cameron Diatte 1
Cecilia Dillie 1
Wayne Vann Raden 1
Ronnie Williams 1
Clay Goben 1
Mike Grenert 1
Henry Corbin III  1
Steve Orton 1
Ron Crume 1
Trevor Hukill 1
Tom Polazollo 1
Brian Merriman 1
Dean Riggs 1
Ryan Cotrell 1
Ted Stinson 1
Rob Gergel 1
Greg Stratton 1
Gilbert Toste 1
Bert Endicott 1
Mark Hinkle 1
Chris Salyer 1
Steve Hix 1
Ted Olson 1
Jay Ewing 1
Morris Chamberlain 1

OTRO Hardtops Return 
To Southern Oregon Speedway In 2018

White City, Oregon...The Old Time Racers Of Oregon will return to Southern Oregon Speedway. This will be the third consecutive season that the OTRO Hardtop division will run most of their events at the White City racing facility. This is a relationship that began when promoter Mike McCann and OTRO President Vic Bridges talked prior to the 2016 season.

Bridges had been the president of the group and helped plot a course for the OTRO during a difficult time for the Hardtop division. Sadly, Vic passed away during the offseason. Stepping forward to take over the duties is Mark Minter. The Minter family has been a part of the OTRO since its inception in the 1980s, and most of the Minter men have had their turn behind the wheel of the pink #33 Hardtop.

The OTRO is a group of competitors that races for fun, not money and points. Through the years, they have enjoyed putting their race cars on both pavement and dirt tracks and have always given the fans a show. The body styles, the old Ford and Chevy Coupes and Sedans, harken back to the good old days of racing in the 1950s and 1960s.

Minter led off last season with back-to-back Main Event victories before Jamie Britton took over with a pair of victories. Britton had been running on the pavement in Roseburg, but he liked the idea of getting out there on the dirt. Minter and Britton seem to be the powerhouses of the group as the Vic and Louise Bridges entry, which had won several races the previous year, was driven by Bruce Wilkerson to a pair of second-place finishes. No word on who will be driving that car this season.

The Trotter family continues to be big supporters of the Hardtop movement. Father Bill Trotter has been at just about every race the group has had at Southern Oregon Speedway for the past two seasons. He also fields a pickup truck entry. Meanwhile, son Dusty Trotter has been a good supporter of the group. Last season, Dusty remarked that he was working on a second car that hopefully we will see this year.

Also in the group are Dean Cast, Brian Crouch and Jimmy Del Castille. All three drivers have won Trophy Dashes, but they're still searching for their first Main Event wins. Other cars are in various states of repair getting ready for an exciting season of Hardtop racing.

The OTRO has six events at Southern Oregon Speedway this year, and they run their first race as part of the Open Wheel Showcase on Memorial Day Weekend, May 26th. These cars are put together with pride and are some of the nicest race cars you'll find at the track. For further information on the happenings at the speedway, go to

2018 Southern Oregon Speedway OTRO Hardtop Schedule
May 26
June 16
June 30
July 21
August 18
September 22