ERIC GRECO SWEEPS CALIFORNIA LIGHTNING SPRINTS AT VENTURA
2022-05-25 13:03dirtFan website https://dirtfan.com/dirtfan/assets/graphics/dirtfan-200x200.jpg
(Torrance, CA, May 24, 2022) After missing the last series race, Eric Greco dominated the competition and swept the show last Saturday when the California Lightning Sprint Car Series visited Jim Naylor's Ventura Raceway. In posting the win in the shortened 20-lap main, the Palmdale-based driver became the sixth different winner in the series' first seven races in 2022.
Eric Greco swept the California Lightning Sprint Car Series show last week at Ventura. CLS photo.l
Greco began his reign of terror over the competition when he turned in a lap of 12.504 in West Evans Motorsports Time Trials. Five-time series champion Bobby Michnowicz of Oak Hills turned in a duplicate lap, but Greco had a quicker second lap than Michnowicz so he got the nod. 2021 CLS champion David Gasper of Santa Barbara was third fastest at 12.255.
Greco captured Extreme Mufflers Heat Race #1 in a photo finish over San Diego's Kevin Bates. Point leader Cody Nigh of Camarillo was third. The first heat was not without extra excitement. As the pack raced into turn three on the first circuit, Gasper clipped the right rear tire of Torrance's "Rockstar" Jon Robertson. Gasper went for a wild ride that saw him flip two times, tearing the wing off the car and ending with a thud against the wall. The driver was unhurt and got back in and drove the car back to the pits, but the crew had some extra work to do to get it ready for the main event.
In Yoshimura R&D Heat Race #2, three-time series champion Jarrett Kramer of Spring Valley spanked the field and won by over a full straightaway over his teammate Michnowicz. Yucca Valley's Jeff "Ponch" Dyer, who came into the night second in points, placed third.
For the main event, the super team, of Kramer and Michnowicz, was on the front row. Robertson and Greco sat in row two. Dyer, who entered the main with three straight second-place finishes, and Nigh were in row three.
When Kris Kornder waved the green flag to start the 25-lapper, Michnowicz raced around Kramer as they exited turn two for the lead. Greco, Dyer, and Nigh were giving chase. By the time the field completed four laps, Michnowicz had expanded his advantage to nearly a half straight. However, a yellow slowed the action on lap five when Ojai's Gage Cheek, rookie Connor Speir of Fillmore, and C.J. Marin all came to a stop in turn two.
The top five for the restart were the same as they were at the start of the race. However, that was about to change. When the green lights flashed on, Michnowicz took off again. As he exited turn two, his left rear wheel came off. He slid sideways in the middle of the straightaway leaving teammate Kramer with nowhere to go. Kramer slammed into Michnowicz's crippled car and flipped. Robertson then slid sideways into Michnowicz's car. The red flag flew and the rescue crew rushed to the scene. All drivers were okay, but the crash knocked Kramer and Michnowicz out of the race. Robertson restarted at the back.
As the show was creeping up on the local curfew and there was still a USAC West Coast Sprint Car main, officials shortened the race to 20-laps.
The lineup for the restart saw Greco at the point with Dyer, Nigh, Gasper and Bates rounding out the top five. As Greco inched away from the field, Dyer and Nigh got into a tremendous battle for second that raged for three laps. In the end, Dyer fended off his pursuer and re-focused on Greco.
When the race reached its new halfway point at the end of lap 10, Greco, in the pretty blue Janssen's/dirtisgone.com/The Educator/Walker Performance Filtration/Ralph & Sonja Greco/Henchcraft/Kawasaki #8, had an eight-car length advantage over second-place Dyer. That lead diminished in a hurry when Greco clipped the cushion in turn four on the 13th lap and biked the car. That allowed Dyer to close in dramatically.
On lap 15, Greco came up on a lapped car and was briefly held up. Dyer, who like Greco was looking for his first win of the year, nearly pulled alongside. Greco got past the slower car and maintained his lead. Two laps later the shoe was on the other foot when a different lapped car slowed Dyer's progress. That essentially sealed the victory for Greco who stretched his lead out all the way to the checkered flag. Dyer ended up second, Gasper was third with Nigh and Bates taking fourth and fifth.
"The car was so good all night," Greco said when interviewed in his car after the race. "The last race when we were here, we struggled really bad. We kind of did not change anything. I just reset myself. That was probably the most fun track we have had here for sure. I could just stick this car anywhere."
After repairs to his blue #18 following his heat race flip, Gasper received the SpeedMart/Advance Racing Suspension "Hard Charger Awards" after going from 10th to third in the main. Michnowicz received the Speed Mart "Hard Luck Award."
The current point standings show Nigh on top of the heap. He has a 68-point advantage over Dyer. Dyer, third-place Gasper, and Greco are separated by a mere 16-points in the battle for second. Rookie Will Browne of Glendora is fifth.
This year the CLS will allow each team to have one throwaway race during the season. The throwaway race will be from a night when a driver did not compete or a night when a driver scores his lowest amount of points on the year. Dyer leads that version of the standings over Greco, Gasper, Nigh, and Browne.
The CLS takes the next two weeks off before returning to action when it visits the Bakersfield Speedway for the fourth time in 2022 on June 11th.
Ventura Raceway, May 21 Results
West Evans Motorsports Qualifying 1. Eric Greco, 12.504; 2. Bobby Michnowicz, 12.504; 3. David Gasper, 12.555, 4. Jeff Dyer, 12.594; 5. Cody Nigh, 12.676; 6. Will Browne, 12.739; 7. Jon Robertson, 12.976; 8. Jarrett Kramer, 13.019; 9. Connor Speir, 13.032; 10. Gage Cheek, 13.144; 11. Kevin Bates, 13.152; 12. Pat Kelley, 13.386; 13. C.J. Marin, 14.456
Extreme Muffler Heat Race #1: 1. Eric Greco, 2. Kevin Bates, 3. Cody Nigh, 4. Connor Speir, 5. Jon Robertson, 6. C.J. Marin, 7. David Gasper
Yoshimura R&D Heat Race #2: 1. Bobby Michnowicz; 2. Cody Nigh; 3. Will Browne; 4. Gage Cheek; 5. Connor Speir; 6. Pat Kelley; 7. Leland Day
Ventura Raceway 20 Lap Main Event (with starting positions)
1. Eric Greco, Palmdale, CA - 4th
2. Jeff Dyer, Yucca Valley, CA - 5th
3. Dave Gasper, Santa Barbara, CA - 10th
4.. Cody Nigh, Camarillo, CA - 6th
5. Kevin Bates, San Diego, CA - 9th
6. Will Browne, Glendora, CA - 6th
7. Connor Speir, Fillmore, CA - 7th
8. Gage Cheek, Ojai, CA - 8th
9. Jon Robertson, Torrance, CA - 3rd
10. Pat Kelley, Chino, CA - 11th
11. C.J. Marin, Imperial Beach, CA - 13th
12. Bobby Michnowicz, Oak Hills, CA - 2nd
13. Jarrett Kramer, Spring Valley, CA - 1st
CLS Contingency Awards
Heat Race #1 - Extreme Muffler $50.00 Product Certificate - Eric Greco
Heat Race #2 - Yoshimura R& D - $50.00 CSI Product Certificate - Jarrett Kramer
1st Place Main Event - Eibach Springs $100.00 Product Certificate - Eric Greco
2nd Place Main Event - Vahlco Wheels $50.00 Product Certificate - Jeff Dyer
3rd Place Main Event - Jake Swanson Shock Technology $50 Product Certificate - David Gasper
4th Place Main Event - Hyper Chassis - $50 Product Certificate - Cody Nigh
5th Place Main Event - Smith Titanium Product Certificate - Kevin Bates
10th Place Main Event - King Racing Products $25.00 Product Certificate - Pat Kelley
Fast Qualifier - West Evans Motorsports $25.00 Product Certificate - Eric Greco
Hard Charger - Speed Mart $25.00 Product Certificate - David Gasper
Hard Charger - Advanced Racing Suspension Product Certificate - David Gasper
Hard Luck Award - Speed Mart $25.00 Product Certificate - Bobby Michnowicz
1st Car Not On The Lead Lap - Rebel Gears 30% Off Coupon - Gage Cheek
California Lightning Sprint Car Series Point Standings
1. Cody Nigh, Camarillo, CA ... 831
2. Jeff Dyer, Yucca Valley, CA ... 763
3. Eric Greco, Palmdale, CA ... 750
4. David Gasper, Santa Barbara ... 747
5. Will Browne ®, Glendora, CA ... 674
6. Bobby Michnowicz, Oak Hills, CA ... 510
7. Pat Kelley, Chino, CA ... 502
8. Connor Speir, Fillmore, CA ... 479
9. A.J. Bender, San Diego, CA ... 366
10. Jon Robertson, Torrance, CA ... 327
California Lightning Sprint Car Season Point Standings (with throwaway)
1. Jeff Dyer, Yucca Valley, CA ... 772
2. Eric Greco, Palmdale, CA ... 757
3. David Gasper, Santa Barbara, CA ... 734
4. Cody Nigh, Camarillo, CA ... 733
5. Will Browne, Glendora, CA ... 614
6. Connor Speir, Fillmore, CA ... 481
7. Bobby Michnowicz, Oak Hills, CA ... 480
8. Pat Kelley, Chino, CA ... 478
9. A.J. Bender, San Diego, CA ... 366
10. Jon Robertson, Torrance, CA ... 331
CLS vs BCRA "Civil War Series" Points
1. David Gasper - CLS - 142
2. Dakota Albright - BCRA - 126
3. Eric Greco - CLS - 126
4. Will Browne - CLA 116
5. Harlee Aguilera - BCRA - 109
6. Cody Nigh - CLS - 104
7. Greg Dennett - BCRA - 100
8. Hunter Kinney - BCRA - 92
9. Matt Land - BCRA - 89
10. Tim Kinser - 83
The following companies have become marketing partners with the CLS in 2022. They have offered up more than $13,000.00 in contingencies that will be awarded on top of the regular racing purses and they will be paid out throughout the year. Yoshimura R&D, Hoosier Tires West, T-Shirts By Timeless, Extreme Mufflers, Saldana Racing Products, Rod End Supply, Speed Mart, Cold Fire West, West Evens Motorsports, RC Fuel Injection, Jake Swanson Shock Technology, Advanced Racing Suspensions, CSI Shocks, Eibach Springs, Triple X Race Components, King Racing Products, Hyper Racing Products, Rebel Gears, Vahlco Wheels, Wilwood Disk Brakes, Fuel Safe Systems, MPI, Circle Track Performance, E-Z UP, Hepfner Racing, Smith Titanium, and Hoosier Speed.
If you or your company would like to become a partner of the longtime racing organization, contact Jon Robertson via email at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (310) 367-9050.
2022 California Lightning Sprint Car Series Schedule
March 25 Bakersfield Speedway Winged - Grant Sexton
April 2 Merced Speedway Non-Wing -- Civil War #1 - David Gasper
April 16 Bakersfield Speedway Winged - A.J. Bender
April 30 Ventura Raceway Winged (Make Up Main) David Gasper
April 30 Ventura Raceway Winged - Bobby Michnowicz
May 14 Bakersfield Speedway Winged - A.J. Bender
May 21 Ventura Raceway Winged - Eric Greco
June 11 Bakersfield Speedway Winged
June 25 Ventura Raceway Winged
July 9 Ventura Raceway Winged
July 23 Ventura Raceway Winged
August 26 Silver Dollar Speedway Winged - Civil War #2
August 27 Placerville Speedway Winged - Civil War #3
September 10 Lemoore Raceway Winged
September 24 Bakersfield Speedway Winged - Civil War #4
October 8 Mohave Valley Raceway Winged - With SWLS
October 29 Ventura Raceway Winged
November 15 Bakersfield Speedway Winged - With USAC Midgets - Civil War #5
November 17 Placerville Speedway Non-Wing - With USAC Midgets - No Points
November 18 Placerville Speedway Non-Wing - With USAC Midgets - No Points
November 19 Placerville Speedway Non-Wing - With USAC Midgets - No Points
To keep up with the CLS online, please visit the website at http://racecls.com/ or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/californialightningsprints
PAST CALIFORNIA LIGHTNING SPRINT CAR CHAMPIONS
1994 Tony Everhart
1995 Gary Sexton
1996 Rob Sczymczak
1997 Jon Rahe
1998 Chris Rahe
1999 Brent Sexton
2000 Greg Bragg
2001 Greg Bragg
2002 Greg Bragg
2003 David Cardey
2004 Keith Janca
2005 Johnny Bates
2006 Donny Gansen
2007 Shane Rossen
2008 Brent Sexton
2009 Stuart Hielschier Sr.
2010 Jarrett Kramer
2011 Tim Brown
2012 Bobby Michnowicz
2013 Stephen Limon
2014 Bobby Michnowicz
2015 Bobby Michnowicz
2016 Bobby Michnowicz
2017 Bobby Michnowicz
2018 Jarrett Kramer
2019 Jarrett Kramer
2021 David Gasper
This press release was produced by Scott Daloisio Sports (909) 226-7768 mailto:email@example.com