Crouse Makes Triumphant Return to Victory Lane

Veteran racer Roger Crouse darted to the outside after an early race restart and took command of the Gagel’s Open Wheel Modified 15-lap, powering on to victory for his first East Bay Modified win in 18 months.

Early race leader Eric Moon kept his car pinned to the bottom throughout the early laps until slipping up the track on lap four. That provided the perfect chance for 2018 track champion Bryan Bernhardt, who slipped through for the lead, only to have the pass negated by a caution flag. On the restart, the pass for the lead came from the outside with Crouse making the move. From there, Crouse was never contested, keeping a steady lead over Bernhardt. Billy Howard and Bernhardt opened the night with heat victories.

Repeat winners proved to be the theme for most of the remaining classes. Forrest Gough (Late Model Sportsman), Robby Hoffmann (Mini-Sprints) and Kever Raulerson (Studio Red Salon Gladiators) all backed up wins from their division’s opening night with a second visit to the winner’s circle.

Gough had to hunt down second-generation racer Tanner Cobb and did so successfully to move out front. Heat winner Jimmy Waldrop appeared to be Gough’s biggest threat, but a mid-race incident took Waldrop out of contention. Cobb recorded his second consecutive runner-up finish.

For Hoffmann, it didn’t take long to shoot down the hopes of second generation racer Austin Craddock as Hoffmann swept to the front by the second lap. The closest pursuit came from Zach Amundsen, who turned around the misfortune of the opening night with a strong second. Hoffmann and Joe Askew opened the night with wins in the preliminary.

Raulerson capitalized on the misfortune of race leader Bailey Purcell, who tangled with lapped traffic on lap 13 of the 15-lap main. The two front runners made contact, but Raulerson was able to continue, inheriting the lead. A late race battle between Daniel Bowman and Logan Casteel resulted in Casteel, the 2018 Rookie of the Year, crossing for a career best second place. Bowman and Raulerson picked up track points for their heat wins.

Gary Lucas made a return to the winner’s circle, claiming the V-8 Warrior main event. The race was a picture of consistency for Lucas, who focused on finding the fast line and repeating it every lap. Heat winner Scott Bane was in hot pursuit, but could not sum up the power to close in on Lucas.

Dan Darnell scored the Florida Old Time Modified main after Jamie Frankland was best in the heat.

Gagel’s Modifieds

Feature: Roger Crouse (15), Bryan Bernhardt (B69), Eric Moon (18), Austin Sanders (64), Garret Stewart (67), Buzzie Reutimann (00), Drew Jackson (08), Pat Passanise (19), Jimmy Baker (69x), Keven DeVrieze (99), Jerry Bourland (777), Dale Kelley (22), Billy Howard (47). DQ – Kenny Monahan.

Late Model Sportsman

Feature: Forrest Gough (21), Tanner Cobb (03), K.D. Kelley (00), Buck Woodhouse (55), Jimmy Waldrop (9), Scotty Williams (27W)


Feature: Robby Hoffmann (66), Zach Amundsen (12), Austin Craddock (17), Jamie Tinkham (51), Dusty Cates (6), Joe Askew (78J), Bruce Comer (21), Dirk Miller (68), David Hall (67), Brad Sutton (9), Steve Diamond (9D), Joe Bartow (3)

Studio Red Gladiators

Feature: Kever Raulerson (99R), Logan Casteel (7), Daniel Bowman (46), Ricky Rutledge Jr. (124), Kayla Handy (8), Bailey Purcell (14), Ricky Rutledge Sr. (4), Alyssa Grant (36G), Tim Maiden (91), Trevor Johnson (05), Fred Wilson (18), Kipp Cooper (69), David Wood (21W), Patrick Fiore Sr. (3). DNS – Robert Kissam (911)

V-8 Warriors

Feature: Gary Lucas (23), Scott Bane (23B), Jason Burnside (12J), George Handy (105), Justin Meeks (10), Wayne Kissam (07), Nate Whitehurst (07W). DNS – Nick Brown.

Florida Old Time Modifieds

Feature: Dan Darnell (111), Jamie Frankland (1), David Kelley (46), Tom McDonald (22), Charlie Sanders (7A), Danny Bowman (00)