Bay Cities Racing Association Lightning Sprints
JEFF DYER OPENS CLS/BCRA CIVIL WAR SERIES WITH A WIN AT THE BAKERSFIELD SPEEDWAY
(Torrance, CA, June 7, 2023) For the second time in eight days, Jeff Dyer steered his #4 lightning sprint car to victory when he bested the field in last Saturday’s “Civil War Series” that matched the California Lightning Sprint Car Series against Northern California’s Bay Cities Racing Association at the Bakersfield Speedway. Seven days earlier, the California Highway Patrol officer spanked the field in the POWRi Southwest Lightning Sprint Car Race at Perris Auto Speedway. Eighteen cars showed up for the first round of the annual series. Legendary star Bobby Michnowicz of Oak Hills got things started when he set the fastest qualifying time on “The West’s Fastest 1/3 Mile High Banked Clay Oval.” His lap of 13.271 narrowly edged the 13.300 of El Cajon’s Braden Chiaramonte who picked up a ride with Sexton Gatlin Racing late in the week. BCRA’s Scott Kinney was third quickest at 13.365. Dyer was fourth in qualifying at 13.440 and another BCRA driver, Greg Dennett, who has two wins in 2023, timed in fifth with a lap of 13.479.
Palmdale’s Eric Greco, who came into the night second in CLS points, captured Racing Junk Heat #1. Michnowicz was second in the eight-lapper with Dyer third. San Diego’s AJ Bender, who was the “Hard Charger” in the USAC/CRA 410 sprint car race the previous week, won Extreme Muffler Teat race #2 from the pole. Dennett, who lives in Freemont, and Chiaramonte were in the place and show spots. Dakota Albright of Waterford, who came into the race as the BCRA point leader, captured heat race #3. Bakersfield’s Leland Day and Kinney chased the veteran to the checkers.
For the 25-lap main event, Dennett was slated to start on the pole. However, he had some engine issues and elected to start at the back. That put Sacramento’s Kinney first for the start with Dyer next two him. The second row was comprised of 59-year-old Michnowicz, who won at Bakersfield two weeks prior, and 16-year-old Chiaramonte. Greco and Ken Coulston of Bermuda Dunes started in row three.
Kinney got the jump going into turn one and led Dyer on the first lap. Dyer tried to drive around Kinney for the lead coming off turn four, but the real estate on the outside narrowed down really quick. Michnowicz was third after the first go-around and Chiaramonte was fourth. By the end of the third circuit, Kinney was about three car lengths ahead of Dyer.
A yellow flag halted the action on the 4th lap when “Shugah” Shane Sexton rolled to a stop with an electrical problem on the back straight.
For the restart, the top five was made up of Kinney, Dyer, Michnowicz, Chiaramonte, and Greco. Once the green flag sent the cars back up to speed, the top three pulled away from the fourth-place driver. Things quickly took a turn for the worse for a couple of cars running in the top five soon after the restart. Chiaramonte slowed coming off turn two and pulled off the track on the fourth go-around with an engine issue. A lap and a half later, Kinney, who led the first five laps, suddenly slowed coming off the same corner on lap six and joined Chiaramonte as a spectator on the infield.
The misfortunes of Kinney and Chiaramonte shuffled the top five with Dyer inheriting the lead, and Michnowicz sliding into second. Greco moved up to third and was followed by Bender and Coulston. The infield crowd grew by one more when an electrical issue forced second-place runner Michnowicz out of the race at the beginning of lap eight.
Seeing the competition drop like flies must have had leader Dyer thinking. Three weeks earlier, he had the race in the bag at Ventura when a broken injector wire knocked him out with eight laps to go.
Like when he was knocked out of the Ventura race and at Perris the week before, Dyer suddenly had a huge lead over Greco and Albright with Coulston fourth and Lakewood’s Aiden Lange fifth. The amazing attrition rate of drivers quickly continued when fourth place Coulston brought out a yellow when he slowed on the track on lap 10.
Coulston left and took Dyer’s commanding lead with him. When the lineup was ready to go again, Dyer had Greco, Bender, Lange, and Albright breathing down his neck. Dyer quickly left his challengers behind while Bender and Lange became embroiled in a crowd-pleasing back-and-forth battle for third that raged on for several laps.
The catastrophes continued for the top five when third-place running Bender blew a fuse on Lap 19. That tightened up the pack one last time and gave some hope to the competition that Dyer could be overtaken on the restart. That did not happen. Greco gave it all he had and challenged Dyer for a lap but over the final five circuits, Dyer pulled away for an almost half-straightaway win. Greco placed second with Dennett, coming all the way to third after starting at the rear, third. Albright and 2022 CLS Rookie of the Year Connor Speir of Fillmore rounded out the top five. Speir, who came from his original starting spot of 16th was the “Advanced Racing Suspension Hard Charger.”
Michnowicz maintained first place in the championship standings, but his misfortune allowed Greco to close to within 53 points. Dyer, Jon Robertson of Torrance, and Bender round out the top five.
Up next for the CLS will be round five of the Best of the West Series vs the POWRi Southwest Lightning Sprints at Ventura on June 17th. The race will see the reincarnation of the annual Wagsdash. Ken Wagner and his team of supporters generously donated $1,000.00 to the CLS/SWLS purse on that night.
While not a CLS-sanctioned race, the SWLS has a race at Barona this Saturday, June 10th. An additional $1,100.00 has been added to the purse plus another $100.00 is waiting for the highest placing CLS car.
The following companies are marketing partners with the CLS in 2023. Hoosier Tires West, T-Shirts By Timeless, Extreme Mufflers, RacingJunk.com, Advanced Racing Suspension, King Racing Products, BR Motorsports, EZ Up, RC Fuel Injection, and Triple X. If you or your company would like to be a marketing partner with the CLS, please contact Jon Robertson using the contact information at the top of this release.
To keep up with the CLS online, please visit the website at http://racecls.com/ or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/californialightningsprints
Bakersfield CLS vs BCRA Civil War Round #1 Results
Qualifying: 1. Bobby Michnowicz, 13.271; 2. Braden Chiaramonte, 13.300; 3. Scott Kinney, 13.365; 4. Jeff Dyer, 13.440; 5. Greg Dennett, 13.479; 6. Ken Coulston, 13.514; 7. Eric Greco, 13.519; 9. Dakota Albright, 13.678; 10. Jon Robertson, 13.732; 11. AJ Bender, 13.760; 12. Leland Day, 13.789; 14. Josef Ferolito, 13.841; 15. Brent Sexton, 13.845; 16. Connor Speir, 13.953; 17. Seth Dyer, 14.006; 18. Clay Byers, 13.343
Racing Junk Heat #1 (8 Laps): 1. Greco; 2. Michnowicz; 3. Jeff Dyer; 4. Robertson; 5. Shane Sexton; 6. Speir
Extreme Muffler Heat #2 (8 Laps): 1. Bender; 2. Dennett; 3. Chiaramonte; 4. Seth Dyer; 5. Ferolito; 6. Lange
Heat #3 (8 Laps): 1. Albright; 2. Day; 3. Kinney; 4. Coulston; 5. Brent Sexton; 6. Byers
Bakersfield Main Event (25 Laps with starting positions and distance behind the leader)
- Jeff Dyer, Yucca Valley, CA (2nd) …
- Eric Greco, Palmdale, CA (7th) … +0.881
- Greg Dennett, Fremont, CA, (1st) … +2.139
- Dakota Albright, Waterford, CA (8th) … +2.945
- Connor Speir, Fillmore, CA (16th) … +3.290
- Brent Sexton, Lakeside, CA, (15th) … +4.817
- Josef Ferolito, Modesto, CA (14th) … +4.980
- Jon Robertson, Torrance, CA, (9th) … +7.169
- Aiden Lange, Lakewood, CA, (12th) … +7.901
- Seth Dyer, Yucca Valley, CA, (11th) … +9.085
- Leland Day, Bakersfield, CA, (10th) … +10.072
- AJ Bender, San Diego, CA, (9th) … +6 Laps
- Ken Coulston, Bermuda Dunes, CA, (6th) … +16 Laps
- Bobby Michnowicz, Oak Hills, CA, (5th) … +18 Laps
- Scott Kinney, Sacramento, CA, (3rd) … +20 Laps
- Braden Chiaramonte, El Cajon, CA, (4th) … +22 Laps
- Shane Sexton, Warner Spring, CA, (13th) … +22 Laps
DNS Clay Byers, Castaic, CA
CLS June 3rd Contingency Awards
Racing Junk Heat Race #1 – Eric Greco
Extreme Muffler Heat Race #2 $50.00 Certificate – AJ Bender
BR Motorsports Main Event 2nd Place Finisher $25.00 Certificate – Eric Greco
King Motorsports Main Event 5th Place Finisher $25.00 Certificate – Connor Speir
Advanced Racing Suspension Hard Charger $50.00 Certificate – Connor Speir
Additional 2023 Contingency Awards
Member: Extreme Muffler - 10% off purchase
Member: EZ UP - 30-40% Off Purchase
Member: RC Fuel Injection – 50% Off Products and Services to all race series participants
Series Champion: Triple X Racing Components - $500.00 off any chassis or chassis kit
2023 California Lightning Sprint Car Series Point Standings
- Bobby Michnowicz, Lomita, CA … 875
- Eric Greco, Palmdale, CA … 822
- Jeff Dyer, Yucca Valley, CA … 729
- Jon Robertson, Torrance, CA … 662
- AJ Bender, San Diego, CA … 611
- Connor Speir, Fillmore, CA … 582
- Seth Dyer, Yucca Valley, CA … 541
- Brent Sexton, Lakeside, CA … 489
- Pat Kelley, Chino, CA … 482
- Aiden Lange, Lakeside, CA … 446
CLS vs BCRA Civil War Standings
- Jeff Dyer, CLS … 135
- Eric Greco, CLS … 130
- Greg Dennett, BCRA … 125
- Dakota Albright, BCRA … 118
- Connor Speir, CLS … 105
- Brent Sexton, CLS … 101
- Josef Ferolito, BCRA … 96
- Jon Robertson, CLS … 93
- Aiden Lange, CLS … 88
- Seth Dyer, CLS … 82
2023 CLS vs SWLS Best of the West Standings
- Bobby Michnowicz, Lomita, CA, CLS … 526
- Eric Greco, Palmdale, CA, CLS … 474
- Jeff Dyer, Yucca Valley, CA, CLS … 403
- Brent Sexton, Lakeside, CA. SWLS … 388
- Connor Speir, Fillmore, CA, CLS … 367
- Jon Robertson, Torrance, CA, CLS … 360
- Seth Dyer, Yucca Valley, CA, CLS … 342
- Pat Kelley, Chino, CA, CLS … 308
- Cody Griggs, Lakeside, CA, SWLS … 299
- Robbie Brockman, El Cajon, CA, SWL … 280
Article Credit: Scott Daloisio
Submitted By: Dakota Albright