Pierce Owns Wild West Shootout Opener

By LONNIE WHEATLEY 

SAN TAN VALLEY, AZ – Bobby Pierce made the most of his first career Arizona start by racing to victory lane in Saturday night’s opening leg of the 11th Annual Keyser Manufacturing Wild West Shootout presented by O’Reilly Auto Parts atop the 1/3-mile Arizona Speedway near Phoenix. 

The “Smooth Operator” from Oakwood, IL, gunned into the lead at the outset of the Black Diamond/Club 29 Super Late Models presented by M&W Transport main event and led all 30 laps to collect the $5,000 winner’s share.

“The car was phenomenal and the track was great too,” Pierce said in victory lane.

While Pierce enjoyed Super Late Model victory lane, Ricky Thornton, Jr., and Travis Schulte took in Wild West Shootout honors as well by besting the USRA Modifieds and X-Modifieds, respectively, as a total of 138 cars filled the pit area for the first of six rounds of competition over the next eight days.




In the Black Diamond/Club 29 Super Late Models presented by M&W Transport feature, Pierce took command from the front row outside as the green flag flew and never looked back despite a pair of cautions along the way.

The triumph put Pierce in line for the potential Keyser Manufacturing $250,000 bonus for the driver that can top all six rounds.

“We’ve got to have luck by our side to do it,” Pierce said of the quarter-of-a-million dollar possibility.

In Pierce’s wake, Brandon Overton took advantage of a caution with just eight laps remaining to snare runner-up honors with Chris Simpson claiming the show position.  Ricky Thornton, Jr., crossed the stripe fourth with Earl Pearson, Jr., rounding out the top five.

Racing close to home, Thornton, Jr., defended his home turf by racing to victory lane in the 25-lap MVT/Border International USRA Modified presented by Arizona Differential main event.

“I slowed down a couple of times when I hit the cushion, I hit myself upside the head and said what are you doing, just drive it,” Thornton related in victory lane.

After outgunning fellow front row starter R.C. Whitwell for the early lead, Thornton, Jr., was in command throughout with Fito Gallardo taking advantage of late-race problems for some other contenders to reel in runner-up honors from the 11th starting position.

Shane Sabraska climbed ten positions to capture third behind Thornton, Jr., and Gallardo with Shawn Fletcher and Justin Kay rounding out the top five.

Minnesota’s Travis Schulte made the most of the long journey by wiring the field in the 20-lap RHR Swag X-Mods presented by Barnett Harley-Davidson main event.

Schulte stormed to the finish line ahead of Brian Kakela with Chad Olsen, Brandon Mehrwerth and Ron Schreiner in the top five.

The Wild West Shootout continues at Arizona Speedway on Sunday with racing action set to go green at 5:00 p.m. with ensuing rounds to follow on Wednesday, January 11, and then Friday through Sunday, January 13-15.

A $5,000 winner’s share is up for grabs for the Super Late Models through the opening five nights of competition with the Bakersfield Karting Experience raising the stakes of the January 15 finale to $12,000-to-win.

Single day tickets are just $20 with the Sunday $12,000 to win Bakersfield Karting Experience finale just $25.  Fans that take advantage of the 6-day discounted pass will enjoy the final night of the Wild West Shootout absolutely free.

Advanced tickets may be purchased online at: http://www.wildwestshootout.net/schedule/ and ticket pricing/purchasing information can be found online at: www.wildwestshootout.net or by calling the Wild West Shootout office at 520-664-2074.

Wild West Shootout Hotel Information can be found at: http://www.wildwestshootout.net/fan-info/lodging-2/ or by calling the Courtyard by Marriott at 480-461-3000.  The Courtyard by Marriott is conveniently located at 1221 S. Westwood in Mesa, Arizona.  Please use event name “Wild West Shootout” when making reservations.

Saturday and Sunday races will go green at 5 p.m. with Wednesday and Friday events starting at 7 p.m.  

Arizona Speedway is located just minutes from Phoenix.  From Phoenix, take US 60 east to Ironwood Dr., turn right (south) and go four miles, Arizona Speedway is on the right hand side.  For more information, visitwww.wildwestshootout.net or call 520-664-2074.

The Wild West Shootout team would like to thank our 2017 partners:  Keyser Manufacturing, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Black Diamond Chassis, Club 29 Race Cars, M&W Transport, Mesilla Valley Transportation, Border International, FK Rod Ends, Karl Performance, Total Seal Piston Rings, Pro Power Racing, Hoosier Tire, RHR Swag, Barnett Harley-Davidson, VP Fuels, Earnhardt Dodge, AR Bodies, EZGO, SafeCraft, Envision, Bakersfield Karting Experience, Beaver Stripes, Five Star Graphics and The Courtyard by Marriott.

Keyser Manufacturing Wild West Shootout presented by O’Reilly Auto Parts Results

Arizona Speedway – Saturday, January 7, 2017

Black Diamond/Club 29 Super Late Models presented by M&W Transport:

Qualifying:

Group 1: 1. 1-Earl Pearson, Jr. 15.116, 2. 54-David Breazeale 15.195, 3. 0-Jake O’Neil 15.278, 4. 7k-Jason Krohn 15.305, 5. 11x-Steve Drake 15.364, 6. 37-Scott Ward 15.934, 7. 53-Andrew Kosiski 15.959, 8. 8-Kye Frick, 9. 12J-Greg Jelvik 16.708.

Group 2:  1. 98-Jason Rauen 15.013, 2. 21-Billy Moyer 15.116, 3. 51-Joey Moriarty 15.391, 4. 33x-Ricky Thornton, Jr., 15.403, 5. 75-Terry Phillips 15.515, 6. 32b-Clay Daly 15.728, 7. 74-Dan Diebel 16.336, 8. 17-Larry Childress 16.846.

Group 3:  1. 20-Rodney Sanders 15.073, 2. 32p-Bobby Pierce 15.180, 3. F5-Garrett Alberson 15.363, 4. 91-Tyler Erb 15.586, 5. 91T-Tony Toste 15.602, 6. 15-Justin Duty 15.696, 7. 10n-Rob Sanders 15.877, 8. 12-Nick Bartels 16.148.

Group 4:  1. 71-Dustin Strand 15.409, 2. 86-Kyle Beard 15.443, 3. 15k-Justin Kay 15.646, 4. 33c-Chad Mahder 15.794, 5. 44-Cole Schill 16.119, 6. 38-Thomas Hunziker 16.492, 7.  6T-Terry Carter 16.605, 8. 89-James Laing 16.867.

Group 5:  1. 42-Brandon Overton 15.272, 2. 28m-Jimmy Mars 15.275, 3. 2-Bobby Hogge 15.525, 4. 96rc-R.C. Whitwell 15.599, 5. 17-Billy Franklin 16.144, 6. 78-Steve Stultz 16.693, 7. R5-Brian Klein 17.029, 8. 43-Dave Deetz 17.924.

Group 6:  1. 32-Chris Simpson 15.348, 2. 157-Mike Marlar 15.444, 3. 5x-John Duty 16.166, 4. 74w-Collen Winebarger 16.432, 5. 24x-Rick Ortega 17.024, 6. 46-Darren Coffell 17.063, 7. 54-Carlos Altumada 17.607, 8. 22g-Paul Guglielman 17.763.

Heat Races – Top 3 advance to “A” Main, balance to 3 “B” Mains

Heat One (8 Laps):  1. 54-David Breazeale, 2 1-Earl Pearson, Jr., 3. 7k-Jason Krohn, 4. 37-Scott Ward, 5. 0-Jake O’Neil, 6. 11x-Steve Drake, 7. 53-Andrew Kosiski, 8. 8-Kye Frick, 9. 12J-Greg Jelvik.

Heat Two (8 Laps):  1. 33x-Ricky Thornton, Jr., 2. 98-Jason Rauen, 3. 21-Billy Moyer, 4. 75-Terry Phillips, 5. 51-Joey Moriarty, 6. 32b-Clay Daly, 7. 74-Dan Diebel, 8. 17-Larry Childress.

Heat Three (8 Laps):  1. 32p-Bobby Pierce, 2. 20-Rodney Sanders, 3. 91-Tyler Erb, 4. F5-Garrett Alberson, 5. 91T-Tony Toste, 6. 15-Justin Duty, 7. 12-Nick Bartels, 8. 10n-Rob Sanders.

Heat Four (8 Laps):  1. 71-Dustin Strand, 2. 86-Kyle Beard, 3. 33c-Chad Mahder, 4. 15k-Justin Kay, 5. 38-Thomas Hunziker, 6. 44-Cole Schill, 7.  6T-Terry Carter, 8. 89-James Laing.

Heat Five (8 Laps):  1. 42-Brandon Overton, 2. 28m-Jimmy Mars, 3. 2-Bobby Hogge, 4. 96rc-R.C. Whitwell, 5. 17-Billy Franklin, 6. 43-Dave Deetz, 7. 78-Steve Stultz, 8. R5-Brian Klein.

Heat Six (8 Laps):  1. 32-Chris Simpson, 2. 157-Mike Marlar, 3. 5x-John Duty, 4. 74w-Collen Winebarger, 5. 46-Darren Coffell, 6. 24x-Rick Ortega, 7. 54-Carlos Altumada, 8. 22g-Paul Guglielman.

“B” Mains – Top 2 from each advance to “A” Main

First “B” Main (12 Laps):  1. 75-Terry Phillips 2, 37-Scott Ward, 3. 0-Jake O’Neil, 4. 51-Joey Moriarty, 5. 11x-Steve Drake, 6. 53-Andrew Kosiski, 7. 32b-Clay Daly, 8. 8-Kyle Frick, 9. 74-Dan Diebel, 10. 12J-Greg Jelvik, 11. 17-Larry Childress.

Second “B” Main (12 Laps):  1. 15k-Justin Kay, 2. F5-Garrett Alberson, 3. 15-Justin Duty, 4. 91T-Tony Toste, 5. 44-Cole Schill, 6. 12-Nick Bartels, 7. 10-Rob Sanders, 8. 38-Thomas Hunziker, 9. 6T-Terry Carter.

Third “B” Main (12 Laps):  1. 96rc-R.C. Whitwell, 3. 74w-Collen Winebarger, 3. 46-Darren Coffell, 4. 43-Dave Deetz, 5. 78-Steve Stultz, 6. R5-Brian Klein, 7. 17-Billy Franklin, 8. 24x-Rick Ortega, 9. 54-Carlos Altumada.

Pro Power Dash:

Dash (10 Laps):  1. 15-Justin Duty, 2. 91T-Tony Toste, 3. 44-Cole Schill, 4. R5-Brian Klein, 5. 53-Andrew Kosiski, 6. 11x-Steve Drake, 7. 12-Nick Bartels, 8. 78-Steve Stultz, 9. 43-Dave Deetz, 10. 0-Jake O’Neil, 11. 46-Darren Coffell, 12. 51-Joey Moriarty.

“A” Main

“A” Main (30 Laps):  1. 32p-Bobby Pierce, 2. 42-Brandon Overton, 3. 32-Chris Simpson, 4. 33x-Ricky Thornton, Jr., 5. 1-Earl Pearson, Jr., 6. 54-David Breazeale, 7. 7k-Jason Krohn, 8. 20-Rodney Sanders, 9. 157-Mike Marlar, 10. 71-Dustin Strand, 11. 28m-Jimmy Mars, 12. 21-Billy Moyer, 13. 33c-Chad Mahder, 14. 98-Jason Rauen, 15. 15k-Justin Kay, 16. 91-Tyler Erb, 17. 96rc-R.C. Whitwell, 18. F5-Garrett Alberson, 19. 2-Bobby Hogge, 20. 37-Scott Ward, 21. 5x-John Duty, 22. 86-Kyle Beard, 23. 75-Terry Phillips, 24. 74w-Collen Winebarger.

MVT/Border International USRA Modifieds presented by Arizona Differential

Heat Races – Top 16 in passing points advance to “A” Main, balance to 2 “B” Mains

Heat One (8 Laps):  1. 5L-Cody Laney, 2. 30-Matt Leer, 3. 30J-Justin Rexwinkle, 4. 111x-Logan Drake, 5. 1s-Johnny Scott, 6. 10c-Chad Olsen, 7. 8-Wesley Summers, 8. D25-David Tanner, 9. 7r-Ryan Gaylord.

Heat Two (8 Laps):  1. 52x-David McDonald, 2. 5m-Tyler McDonald, 3. 7a-Shane Sabraski, 4. 29d-Brad Dierks, 5. 26-Shawn Fletcher, 6. 77T-Tripp Gaylord, 7. 59-Mark Stewart, 8. 78-Cory Wier, 9. 21x-Dustin Bluhm.

Heat Three (8 Laps):  1. G17-Fito Gallardo, 2. 111-Bumper Jones, 3. 34-Mickey Lassiter, 4. J17-Jake Gallardo, 5. A1-Phil Dixon, 6. 6-Casey Skyberg, 7. 23-Matt Gilbertson, 8. 2J-Blake Jegtvig, 9. 7-Wayne McCleskey.

Heat Four (8 Laps):  1. 20RT-Ricky Thornton, Jr., 2. 96rc-R.C. Whitwell, 3. 171-Philip Houston, 4. 131-Royal Jones, 5. 15k-Justin Kay, 6. 65x-Carlos Ahumada, Jr., 7. 44-Christy Barnett, 8. L8-Brian Schultz, 9. 15x-Kenny Mayer.

Heat Five (8 Laps):  1. 71-Dustin Strand, 2. 11x-Rich Loftus, 3. R1-Jay Richardson, 4. 71x-Jesse Hoskins, 5. 23h-Terry Haren, 6. 1x-Walter Ball, 7. 37jr-Morgan Ward, 8. 51-Alex Guthmiller.