It is known to get hot in Arizona in October so when the Great American Shortcourse GAS series, Powered by Optima, brought their Rounds 6 & 7 to Wildhorse Pass Motorsports Park it was hot, but not as hot as the racing action once the GAS series got underway. The heat didn’t scare away the competition and the fans were treated to plenty of racing action. The series started the year off at Hammertown in February and will end their 2023 season November 4 & 5 at SBC Fairgrounds in Victorville, CA.
The Pro 2 race on Saturday was owned by Johnny Holtger as he took off from the green and held the lead until crossing under the checkers. Following Holtger was Myan Spaccarelli who grabbed the spot off the start and held it throughout the race. Third was Bradley Morris who had to fight Brock Hanmer for five laps before taking the final podium spot from Hanmer. The Pro 2 race on Sunday was able to leave the fans excited. Once green Johnny Holtger jumped out front with Bradley Morris second. Then going into lap two Morris was able to slip inside of turn one on Holtger, and Brock Hanmer was pressuring Holtger. The front three stayed in their running order most of the race but as the end drew near Holtger picked up the pace to close in on Morris. With two laps to go Morris went wide in turn four and Holtger was able to draw up beside him. The two dove into turn one together but Morris was able to hold the lead. While fans watched those two Myan Spacarelli improved on his fourth place by getting past Hanmer for third. As the checkers flew it was Bradley Morris winning with Johnny Holtger a close second, then Spaccarelli finished out the podium.
Brody Eggleston dominated the Pro Lite action in Round Six by heading straight for the checkers. With Eggleston running out front the battle for second was between Connor Barry and Madix Bailey. Barry had the position and it would take nine of the 14 laps before Bailey was able to take second from Barry. Bailey would suffer a mechanical issue a couple of laps later giving Barry back the position. With Bailey out Johnny Holtger moved into third giving him the final spot on the podium. Madix Bailey jumped out front in Sunday’s Pro Lite action, and behind him was Johnny Holtger. On lap three Holtger had an issue and pulled off, this gave Connor Barry the second spot and yesterday’s winner Brody Eggleston was third. There was no stopping Madix Bailey and he went on for the win. Second place changed with just two laps remaining as Eggleston was able to get past Barry. On top of the podium was Madix Bailey, second was Brody Eggleston and Connor Barry third. Brian Cannon was the lone Mini Open entry.
The Super Buggy class had 7 entries and when the green flew it was Lorenzo Bonacci jumping out of the front row into the lead. Bonacci would lead for nine of the laps but had a hard charging Zachary Drapkin dogging him for position. When Bonacci spun in turn three, Drapkin was able to drive past for the lead. Bonacci had some problems and eventually left the race with two laps to go. So Zachary Drapkin would drive on for the win and then a battle for second ended at the finish line between Ezra Ebberts and Jaden Uribe. Ebberts had the position and Uribe made a last ditch effort trying to cut inside of Ebberts at the finish line. His effort to take second failed and then his right tire caught the wall just past the finish line, that is when the car stood up and spun, and when he landed the front suspension collapsed, ending his weekend. During Sunday’s race Lorenzo Bonacci dominated once the green flag came out. In second was Zachary Drapkin and third Ezra Ebberts. At the checkers the finishing order remained the same.
The Production 1000 race had its share of action on Saturday. Ryder Vanbeekum was the early leader but his lead only lasted for three laps when Mason Prater took the position. A lap later Vanbeekum retired and another lap went by and Prater also retired, giving the lead to George Llamosas. The lead would again change when Connor Barry got past Llamosas. A couple of laps later Dominick Benites would get past Llamosas for second and just before the race ended Drake Mittag would move around Llamosas for third. Taking the win was Connor Barry with Benites second and Mittag third. In race seven on Sunday George Llamosas only took a couple of laps to move from his seventh place starting position into the lead. Moving also through the pack was Connor Barry who started fourth but followed Llamosas into second. Once out front Llamosas cleared the pack and left Barry defending his second place position. As the checkers flew it was George Llamosas taking the win Connor Barry second and Karaston Hernandez third.
Jason Weller took charge early in the Production Turbo UTV race and drove straight to the checkers. Rhyan Denney was second and Oliver Golding third. The Unlimited UTV race with the Production class and Kyle Arkenau was the fastest, second was Dan Kelly and Ryder Vanbeekum was third. In Sunday’s race Kainan Baker left the starting line and headed straight to the winners circle in the Production UTV class. Second was Rhyan Denney and Jason Weller was third. Kyle Arkenau was again first Unlimited UTV, and placed second overall. Ryder Vanbeekum was second in class and Jonah Bishop was third.
Dane Culver drove into the Modified Kart lead on the second lap and was able to hold the position to the checkers. Ashton Williams trailed Travis Jones for a few laps before managing to take over second. Once in order the three held position until driving under the checkers. Dane Culver again dominated the Modified Kart race on Sunday for a clean sweep on the weekend. Talan Martin had to move through the pack to grab second with just two laps to go. Third place finisher was Travis Jones who had held second until Martin appeared.
Round six of the SR1 class saw Brandon Kilgore jump out front early. Kilgore would get clear from second place Paul O’Brien, while O’Brien was receiving pressure from Scott Weber. These two got together in turn three and Corry Weller was able to drive past for the second spot. Brandon Kilgore would pull off on lap eight giving the lead to Weller. Corry Weller would go on for the win and Paul O’Brien finished second ahead of Robert Gutierrez. On Sunday Brandon Kilgore had no problems taking the win. Second place Corry Weller had started the race in third by after a couple of laps found a way around Scott Webster. So Kilgore took the win with Weller second and Webster third.
Bruce Fraley jumped off the line first in the Limited Buggy Round six race and never looked back for the win. A battle ensued between Jake Laff and Matthew Somody for second place. It was a race long battle as Laff finally took the second spot with two laps to go. Matthew Somody held on for third. Bruce Fraley would again take the win on Sunday but had to work hard for it. Having started in fifth it took a few laps before closing in on race leader Travis Howard. Fraley would finally get around Howard on the last lap. The battle for third also was determined on the final lap as Joe Laff was able to get past Carson Smith.
The Mini Stock/ Class 11 / and Open V8 ran together. The V8 power of Zack Gudenkauf took the overall win. First in the Mini Stock class was Brent Veenstra and Robb Orr took second and Anthony Csuzi third. First Class 11 was Rick Boyer and second in class was Kyle Zirkus and Daniel Boswell was third. Zack Gudenkauf would again take th e overall in the combined class Sunday. In this race Rob Orr bested the other Mini Stock racers and yesterday’s winner Brent Veenstra, was second. Third was Anthony Csuzi.
In the JR2 Kart action, the race appeared to be all Jayden Manchester as he led all but the last two laps. That is when Manchester made a mistake in turn four allowing Mikey Childress and Makenzie Montgomery get by. With only two laps remaining Manchester had to settle for third as Mikey Childress took the win with Makenzie Montgomery second. Brody Glaze took the win on Sunday after having to drive through the pack before taking control on lap seven. Jayden Manchester was second and Makenzie Montgomery was third.
There were a total of 12 RZR 170s at the start. Once racing Jake Hill jumped out the early leader, but then on lap five he dropped to ninth and retired shortly after. With Hill gone, Brixton Wirt took over the lead with Luke Vail a close second. With a couple of laps to go Vail got around Wirt for the eventual win. Brixton Wirt finished second and Triton Lawrence was third. Again Jake Hill jumped out front on Sunday but this time he kept things together to take the win. Brixton Wirt was second and Luke Vail was third.
Ian Torfi won the first AM Ortega JR 1 Kart race. Second was Brixton Wirt and third was Samuel Gibbs. The AM Ortega JR 1 Kart race Sunday was again won by Ian Torfi. Brixton Wirt was second and Caden Greinke was third.
On Saturday the Youth 1000 UTV and RZR 570 classes ran together. Ryder Vanbeekum was the early Youth 1000 leader with Jaxon Leaming a close second. Then on the eighth lap Leaming made the pass for the lead and was able to hold on for the win. Ryder Vanbeekum finished second and Reagan Stell was third. Jennifer Owens was able to win the RZR 570 event with Cameron Leaming second and Jaxon Withrow third. On Sunday Ryder Vanbeekum drove straight to the checkers. Jason Leaming would finish second after Reagon Stell dropped out with three laps to go. Zoe Easton was third. Jennifer