WATSONVILLE, Calif. — Justin Sanders proved once again on Friday why he is known as “Mr. Ocean Speedway.”
Sanders picked up the win in the weekly Taco Bravo 360 Sprint Car Series 30-lap feature.
Sanders edged out D J Netto and Sean Becker after starting ninth in a 23-car field on the quarter-mile Santa Cruz County Fairgrounds oval in front of an empty grandstands due to COVID-19.
Joey Ancona and Netto brought the field to the green with Netto getting the advantage when Ancona did a series of wheelies trying to be first into the turn. Netto would lead but a caution would quickly fly with Chase Majdic stopped his car in the infield but not far enough off the racing surface to be safe. He would go to the hot pit for repairs and return only to drop out of the race a few laps later and become the first retire.
Shortly after the restart, Josh Chisum got into the infield throwing up a cloud of dust, but no caution flag had to be thrown. On lap four, Jason Chisum would spin his No. 25zin the fourth turn. Josh Chisum would also have difficulty again in turn four and this time, he spun out to slow down the race. Netto continued to lead Ancona while Tristan Guardino moved into the third spot.
Guardino would take over the second position but on lap 13 a Joel Myers’s spin in the troublesome turn four would turn the track yellow. By this time Sanders, who started mid pack, had moved into the third spot. On lap 16, he would take over second and have his sights on leader Netto.
Becker, who started deeper (14th) in the field than Sanders had quietly worked his way into the fourth spot.
red flag stopped the race on lap 20 when Bud Kaeding and Myers went on their sides coming out of turn four. The wreck also involved Ancona, ending all three driver’s race. The stoppage bunched the field up and gave Sanders 10 laps to figure out how to pass Netto.
That opportunity came on lap 27 when he passed Netto in lapped traffic coming out of turn four. Sanders’ bright yellow No. 17 Alkaline 88 sponsored car lead the final three laps.
Tyler Slay won the 20-lap midget feature.
Justin Sanders, D.J. Netto, Sean Becker, Tristan Guardino, Blake Carrick, Max Mittry, Jayson Bright, John Clark, Koen Shaw, Brad Furr, J.J. Ringo, Burt Foland Jr, Eric Humphries, Landon Hurst, Ashlyn Rodriguez, Adam Kaeding, Vaughn Schott, Josh Chisum, Bud Kaeding, Joey Ancona, Joel Myers, Jason Chisum, Chase Majdic