California’s Whitfield Takes Treasure Valley 100 Titleadmin
A blustery Saturday greeted more than thirty Teleperformance Street Stock driver Saturday, October 24, as Meridian Speedway hosted the $5,000 to win Treasure Valley 100. The Mulder Engineered Race Engines Junior Late Models, Project Filter Pro-4s, Mini Stocks, High School Tuners, and Big Daddy’s Barbecue Hornets wrapped up the 2020 season with twin features.
Twenty-four of the fastest Teleperformance Street Stock racers in the West roared to green for the first 38-lap segment of the Treasure Valley 100. On the break, pole sitter Brandon White overpowered Jay Henson to take his Ballistic Precision Shooting Range, North East Coast Lighting and Electric to the point. Traffic was heavy behind the leaders as local competitors Pat Young, Dan Lowther, and Casey Tillman worked their way forward.
On the move early was pre-race favorite Joshua Whitfield who, after apparent issues in qualifying, found the handle on his Gone Fishin’ Marine, Hidden Valley Tow machine and sliced his way through the pack. After just fifteen laps Whitfield ran third with his sights set on catching White and Henson out front.
Despite a healthy dose of contact throughout the field the race stayed under green flag conditions until Henson spun out of the runner up spot on lap twenty-five. This kicked off a rash of late cautions to close out the Treasure Valley 100’s first segment. White was first across the Caleb’s Chop Shop Victory Stripe, followed by Whitfield, Tyler Gallup, Young and Lowther.
After a ten-car invert, Spokane, Washington’s Frank Varner led the field to green in his Cascade Rain Gutters, Better Haul machine with Bryan Bykirk to his outside. Varner got to the gas pedal first to take the early segment two lead, but an encounter with the front stretch wall sidelined him after just a handful of laps.
Behind new leader Bykirk, local heavyweights Taylor Occhipinti, Tillman, and Jesse James Lawson went door-to-door for the runner up spot. Tillman got the better of this battle and moved his YMC Mechanical, PFC Brakes machine to second on the Pepsi-Cola scoreboard.
But Whitfield was lurking, and at the race’s halfway mark the Roseville, California driver made his move. Whitfield first dispatched Occhipinti’s Marv’s Tire Service, Graphics by Rhonda Kellerer, then followed Lawson around Tillman for third place. Lawson, at the controls of his Newcomer Racing, Conrad & Bischoff racer, was Whitfield’s next victim, and fell with fourteen laps left in the second segment.
Two laps later Whitfield’s run to the front was complete as he moved past Bykirk and pulled to a comfortable lead. Behind Whitfield, the top ten racers settled into their transfer positions. As the field crossed the Caleb’s Chop Shop Victory Stripe for the second time, Whitfield led Lawson, White, Bykirk, Mike Marthaller, Tillman, Gallup, Occhipinti, Lowther, and Young into the third segment.
Just 24 laps separated Whitfield from a $5,000 payday as the top ten Teleperformance Street Stocks took the night’s final green flag. White sped around Lawson for the second spot early, but it was Tillman who was on the move. Tillman worked his way into third on the Pepsi-Cola scoreboard and immediately set to work on White’s rear bumper. Tillman finally pried White off the bottom of the race track on lap eleven, but a caution flag stymied his advance.
On the restart White pushed as hard as he could on the outside, but Whitfield was too strong in the low groove and he retook the lead. This opened a lane for Tillman, who muscled his way into second and went to work tracking down Whitfield. But the Roseville, California driver proved too strong to be caught and he cruised to the Treasure Valley 100 victory.
After a slow start to his 2020 Teleperformance Street Stock campaign, Josh Fanopoulos dominated the last half of the Meridian Speedway schedule to claim his second division title.
Nevaeh Hull piloted her Diversified Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning, Cuddy Mountain Transport machine to the final victory of the Mulder Engineered Race Engines Junior Late Model season. Though he missed Saturday’s race, Nampa, Idaho’s Ashton Cristiani and his YMC Mechanical, RBK Apparel team took home the 2020 division title.
Entering Championship Saturday, Jordan Harris had clinched the Project Filter Pro-4 title in his Allan Marsh RV and Marine Center, H&H Auto machine. But the battle for second was ferocious as Kenny Chandler looked to chase down Cody McDonald. With a win in the day’s first feature and a second behind Larry Hull in the other, Chandler put his Project Filter, Fairly Reliable Bob’s racer in second by 24 markers over McDonald.
As Meridian, Idaho’s Dylan Wardle took the green flag Saturday, he became the High School Tuner division’s 2020 champion. At the wheel of a backup car after his primary TraBar Custom, Padgett Pest Control ride was converted to a Mini Stock, Wardle watched Riley Bradford and Brayden Sweatfield split Saturday’s two main event wins.
A dozen Mini Stocks took the green flag for their final two features of the year. While AJ Collins and Don Trafford claimed main event victories, it was Payette, Idaho’s Travis Pavlacky who piloted his FVC Construction, Price Painting pickup truck to the 2020 championship.
Chuck Youngblood and Dale Bolinger each picked up a Big Daddy’s Barbecue Hornet division win Saturday as Boise, Idaho’s Josh Parkkila, at the controls of his Pop’s Shop, Boise Bath and Kitchen Company car, took home the year’s division title.
With 2020 in the rearview mirror, Meridian Speedway turns its sights to the 2021 season. On behalf of each and every track official and staff member, Meridian Speedway would like to extend our gratitude to our fans and supporters both in the stands and on SpeedCast.tv. Stay tuned to www.meridianspeedway.com for all the latest news and notes from around the quarter-mile. We’ll see you in 2021 under the big yellow water tower at your NASCAR Home Track, Meridian Speedway.