Santa Rosa Mile

Baker Really Cookin’ at the WCDTS Finale!

| 17 October 2014 3:55 pm

Eddie Mulder’s West Coast Dirt Track Series
Round 3: Willow Springs International Raceway

Story and Photos by Karen Gould/Checkered Flag Photography
ROSAMOND, CA, OCT. 5, 2014

On Sunday morning, Eddie Mulder’s West Coast Dirt Track Series crew was ready for another day of racing, the season finale at the Willow Springs International Raceway in Rosamond, California. With Saturday’s event in the bag – the Open Pro main event had been won by Sammy Halbert – the Pro-class points winner would be determined on this day. Ramspur Winery’s Nancy and Terry Otton graciously provided a $7,500 Pro purse that would be awarded at the end of this day.

2014 1005 CA WCDTS Rd3 PHOTO A Jeffrey Carver 23

In spite of the very warm weather on this weekend, the track remained perfect, due to Gary Ritchie’s skill on a tractor and another load of DG being added early in the morning and the track being watered throughout the day.

Coffee was being shared as the pits came to life. Twenty-nine Pro-class riders were getting ready for competition, along with the participants of all the usual support classes, as well as the Youth classes. Eighteen classes accommodated 125 entries.

At the riders’ meeting in the morning, Eddie passed the hat – not, as usual, for the Dash For Cash, but for Jethro Halbert and his family. [Jethro Halbert was injured at the Calistoga round of the AMA Pro Flat Track Series and remains in a coma as of press time… Editor] The riders’ meeting produced $3,000 from the riders and fans. To those who donated, a huge thank-you! Everyone wishes Jethro and his family the very best.

Passing Eddie’s hat to raise funds to help Jethro Halbert.

Passing Eddie’s hat to raise funds to help Jethro Halbert.

Also, thank you very much to longtime West Coast Dirt Track Series supporters Mark and Randy Zimmerman of Specialty Fabrications, Digger Helm #57, and Rod Lake. And a very special thank-you to Nancy and Terry Otton of Ramspur Winery for their generosity in providing the $7,500 points fund for the 2014 series. And thank you to Tuff Plates, which donated all of the plates given out at the end of day. Several other sponsors – Motion Pro, Barnett Clutches, Triumph of North America, Coventry Spares and more – also donated the items given away at the awards presentation of each event. Without these people and companies and the crew that works the WCDTS events, we would not be able to do what we do. Please take a minute to thank them if you have ridden our races.

In the Penton Race Products Senior Vintage class, Jim Ottele once again found himself in between the Lessley brothers, Ron and Jeff, but this was Jeff’s day to win. The Lessleys are only one of a few families who race together. Fathers and sons, brothers, cousins and more enjoy racing side by side at this fun and family-friendly event. When the riders and crews get together at the Willow Springs events, it is very much like a family reunion, with everyone sharing their tools, parts, food and kids off the track – and sharing some fun competition on the track!

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With the Calistoga Half Mile having been run on September 29 and the final AMA Grand National Series race set to be held in Pomona on October 11, many of the GNC riders had the opportunity to join in the festivities at Willow Springs and ride for a piece of the $67,000 purse being paid this weekend. Four heat-race winners went to the Dash For Cash. After winning the Dash on Saturday, Brad “The Bullet” Baker was hoping for another hefty envelope.

Brad got the holeshot in Sunday’s Dash, and Jared “Mr. Consistent” Mees was running second, aboard his wife Nichole’s bike. (Mees had blown both of his engines up.) Sammy Halbert got around Jared, and Jeffrey “So Tall” Carver followed him. Baker took the win, followed by Halbert, Carver and Mees.

Donnie Howard took the lead off the line in the Works Performance Vet class and held it for three laps. However, Paul Ott didn’t miss a beat when Howard made a crucial mistake, allowing Ott and six others to get by him. Jack Jones took over the second spot, and Robert Bush finished third.

Jack Alexander finished in the front of the Senior Novice/ Super Senior class. Alexander was honored to be piloting the 650cc Triumph built by Eddie Mulder and owned by Herb Wolfe. Alexander’s buddy Steve Craft gave it all he had, finishing second. Rick Villanueva finished third. D-dan McDougall, who came all the way from Canada, finished fourth.

Jack Alexander, aboard the Eddie Mulder-Herb Wolf Triumph (1), riding with his buddy Steve Craft (25).

Jack Alexander, aboard the Eddie Mulder-Herb Wolf Triumph (1), riding with his buddy Steve Craft (25).

Dominic DeMario was the Youth 60cc champion on this day. Connor Hickerson and Aiden Bromstead followed him home in second and third, respectively, and sisters Ana and Ava Bush followed them across the line.

Zak Earwood was the Youth 50cc winner, followed by Gavin Dawson.

Gavin Dawson (301) – cutest kid on the track, in the Youth 50cc class.

Gavin Dawson (301) – cutest kid on the track, in the Youth 50cc class.

Tom Horton and Chris Rudy have been front-runner competitors in the Classic 500cc/ 750cc Small-Valve main events for years. After a terrible crash in April, Horton was back just as fast ever – but not fast enough to beat Rudy on this day. Horton got the holeshot, but Rudy got the win, taking the lead on lap three. Cary Tanner rounded out the podium.

Chris Rudy (87) leads Tom Horton (55) in Classic 500cc/ 750cc Small-Valve competition.

Chris Rudy (87) leads Tom Horton (55) in Classic 500cc/ 750cc Small-Valve competition.

Tom Horton had another chance to win, this time in the Modern 500cc main event, competing against and beating Jeff Lesley to the finish line.

Then Donnie Howard beat Horton in the Modern 750 class. D-dan McDougall finished third.

Aboard a beautiful Indian Scout 750, Brent Johnson was the winner in the Dinosaur class.

Hunter Goodwin and Tyler Raggio rode the 80cc class in the one and two spots for all six laps. Good friends and riding partners Jacob Cascio and Zaden Florez were battling for the third position when they collided on the track. Florez carried on to finish third, but Cascio’s leg was broken in the mishap. Get well soon, Jacob!

Jacob Cascio (21M) skirmishes with Grant Holmes (7X) during practice.

Jacob Cascio (21M) skirmishes with Grant Holmes (7X) during practice.

The 250cc class – the second-largest class of the day – included 13 riders. Brandon Green took the lead from the start and never looked back. Jace Callison and Clayton Williams finished second and third, respectively, after riding in those positions for all six laps.

Clayton Williams (95) and Brandon Green (10) lead the start of the 250cc contest.

Clayton Williams (95) and Brandon Green (10) lead the start of the 250cc contest.

Callison was back in the Open Amateur class for another second-place finish, behind Joe Roberts. Green finished third.

Joe Roberts (27E) topped the Open Amateur class.

Joe Roberts (27E) topped the Open Amateur class.

The front position changed three times in the Senior Open class (which ran combined with the Modern 250cc class). Larry Earhart rode the first lap in the lead. Scott Podergois took the lead on lap two and held it for two laps. Then Bill Kolkman took the lead and finished the race in front. Podergois and Earhart finished second and third, respectively.

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Dillon Allen, the West Coast Dirt Track Series’ starter’s son, made his pop proud by winning the Open B Amateur class. James Ott and Parker Earhart got around Derrick Ponton to take their places on the podium.

Dillon Allen (88) was the victor in the Open B Amateur class.

Dillon Allen (88) was the victor in the Open B Amateur class.

Jack Jones was back in front in the 500cc Support class, leading Travis Petton II and Jeff Gonzales from pole to pole. Dom DeMario and Casey Tanner followed, and the WCDTS’ fabulous tractor operator Gary Ritchie finished last.

The start of the Open Pro main event.

The start of the Open Pro main event.

It didn’t take Brad “The Bullet” Baker long to take over the lead in the Digger Helm Open Pro class, flying by Jared Mees, who was still riding Nichole’s bike, on the second lap. Sammy Halbert followed Brad past Mees on lap 10, and Jeffrey Carver, who had ridden in the fourth spot from the front, overtook Mees on lap 14. At the finish, Eddie Mulder declared that “Bad Brad” is back!

Brad Baker takes co-promoter Randy Zimmerman along on his victory lap.

Brad Baker takes co-promoter Randy Zimmerman along on his victory lap.

Ramspur Winery’s Terry Otton gets the final victory lap of the day!

Ramspur Winery’s Terry Otton gets the final victory lap of the day!

The envelopes for the Digger Open Pro riders were thick. By the end of the racing weekend, Brad Baker had won the Dash For Cash races on Saturday and Sunday, and he had also finished the Digger Open Pro class race in second on Saturday and in first on Sunday. When handed his envelope during the awards celebration at the end of the day, his response was, “Wow!”

Brad Baker caresses the thick envelope…

Brad Baker caresses the thick envelope…

Eddie and Jodi Mulder, Mark and Randy Zimmerman, Digger Helm, and Terry Otton were all on hand to congratulate the riders for their weekend accomplishments. Special plates were awarded to several of the West Coast Dirt Track Series staff for their longtime commitment to the series, and all of the day’s top finishers were awarded beautiful number plates that had been provided by Tuff Plates. Sammy Halbert, the Pro points winner, shared the Ramspur Winery Pro points fund with Mees and Baker, the winners of this weekend’s Digger Helm Open Pro races.

Watch the www.EddieMuldersWCVDTS.com website and the Eddie Mulder WCDTS Facebook page for the 2015 schedule.

Willow Springs International Raceway
Rosamond, California
Results: October 5, 2014 (Round 3 of 3)

YOUTH 50: 1. Zack Earwood; 2. Gavin Dawson.

YOUTH 60: 1. Dominic DeMario; 2. Conner Hickerson; 3. Aidan Bromstead; 4. Ana Bush; 5. Ava Bush; 6. Sierra Hickerson; 7. Rocco Landers.

YOUTH 80: 1. Hunter Goodwin; 2. Tyler Raggio; 3. Zaden Florez; 4. Nathan Agrifoglio; 5. Grant Holmes; 6. Travis Petton IV; 7. Dominic DeMario; 8. Jacob Cascio.

250 OPEN: 1. Brandon Green; 2. Jace Callison; 3. Clayton Williams; 4. Tanner Dean; 5. Alex Crosby; 6. Grant Holmes; 7. James Ott; 8. Cole Cates; 9. Justin Hanson; 10. Travis Petton IV; 11. John Gronek; 12. Noah Bush; 13. Jaycee Jones.

SR OPEN: 1. Bill Kolkman; 2. Scott Podergois; 3. Larry Earhart; 4. John Lundgren; 5. Jim Ottele; 6. Dan Dawson; 7. Greg Powell; 8. William Morgan; 9. Jim Medlin.

500 SUPPORT: 1. Jack Jones; 2. Travis Petton II; 3. Jeff Gonzales; 4. Dom DeMario; 5. Cary Tanner; 6. Mark LaDue; 7. Gary Ritchie.

OPEN AM: 1. Joe Roberts; 2. Jace Callison; 3. Brandon Green; 4. Casey Cahoon; 5. Paul Ott; 6. Darrell Ponton; 7. Tanner Dean; 8. Robert Bush; 9. Clayton Williams; 10. Julia Rankin; 11. Rich Hanson.

OPEN AM B MAIN: 1. Dillon Allen; 2. James Ott; 3. Parker Earhart; 4. Derrick Ponton; 5. Scott Hanson; 6. Hayden Earwood; 7. Ron Duarte; 8. Noah Bush; 9. Stephen Yoshida; 10. Mike DeJohn; 11. Alan Musev.

OPEN PRO: 1. Brad Baker; 2. Sammy Halbert; 3. Jeffrey Carver; 4. Jared Mees; 5. Robert Pearson; 6. Mike Rush; 7. Bronson Bauman; 8. Chad Cose; 9. Kayl Kolkman; 10. Jake Shoemaker; 11. Ryan Wells; 12. Nick Armstrong; 13. Mike Martin; 14. Jeffery Lowery.

VET: 1. Paul Ott; 2. Jack Jones; 3. Robert Bush; 4. John Lundgren; 5. Donnie Howard; 6. David Bush; 7. Bill Kolkman; 8. Will Ott; 9. Brian Harmon; 10. Mark LaDue; 11. Gary Ritchie; 12. Jim Medlin.

SR NOV/SUPER SR: 1. Jack Alexander; 2. Steve Craft; 3. Rick Villanueva; 4. Dan McDougall; 5. Fred Berger; 6. Charles Caspary.

SR OPEN: 1. Bill Kolkman; 2. Scott Podergois; 3. Larry Earhart; 4. John Lundgren; 5. Jim Ottele; 6. Dan Dawson; 7. Greg Powell; 8. William Morgan; 9. Jim Medlin.

SR VINTAGE: 1. Jeff Lessley; 2. Jim Ottele; 3. Ron Lessley; 4. David Krohn; 5. Rick Villanueva; 6. Mike Wayne.

DINOSAUR: 1. Brent Johnson.

CLASSIC 500/750 SMALL VALVE: 1. Chris Rudy; 2. Tom Horton; 3. Cary Tanner; 4. Mark La Due; 5. Lenny Rodriguez; 6. Joe Pape; 7. Fred Berger; 8. James Kohls.

MODERN 250: 1. Tom Horton.

MODERN 500: 1. Tom Horton; 2. Jeff Lessley; 3. Mike Wayne; 4. Ron Lessley.

MODERN 750: 1. Donnie Howard; 2. Tom Horton; 3. Dan McDougall; 4. Charles Caspary.

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Category: Dirt Track, National, Regional, Vintage, Vintage Dirt Track

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