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Newspaper Archive of
Pahrump Mirror
Pahrump, Nevada
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July 10, 1997     Pahrump Mirror
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July 10, 1997
 

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Pahrump Valley Gazette, Thursday, July I0, i997"17 FREE by Geoff Kreis Crashes, confusion and controversy. Those were the three Cs at the Pahrump Valley Speedway Saturday night. The IMCA and Street Stocks were at it once again battling to gain top honors. The IMCAs hit the dirt first and immedi- ately caused excite- ment. Car number 14, driven by Robert Patrick Smotherman, hit the wall on the first lap of the race, stop- ping action for nearly 10 minutes. He appar- ently banged up his knee in the crash. He was not seriously hurt, however, and was driven off of the track in a golf cart. The race started back up and cars num- ber 17 and 87 battled back and forth for the lead. Car 87, driven by Dan Fitzgerald eventually took the lead for good and won the checkered flag. Local favorite Jason Pike won the second of the IMCA heats. The Street Stock heats involved quite a bit more of the action as crashes, spin-outs, heated battles for first place and even heated battles to stay in the race occurred. In the first heat of the Street Stocks, car number four, driven by Preston Sullivan copied what Smotherman did in the first heat of the IMCAs. Sullivan was leading at the start of the race, but spun out on the second turn of the first 1. Harley Cook's number  car then took the lead. number 34, driven by David Day bumped Cook and Diy took the lead. He was eventually passed by Homer Rush's 6 car. Rush won the race with Day coming in second. Cook spun out and hit the wall in the last lap and did not finish. The second heat was a close race until cars 28,555, and 22 had to pull out of the race due to mechanical failures. That left only five cars to finish the race. Car number three, driven by Levi Kiefer won the race with Michael Hildebrlnd's number 17 car coming in second. Gary Erwin's number 8 car caught on fire in the third heat and emergency crews had to rush over to extinguish the flames and pull Erwin out. Car number 23, driven by Tim Flessati won the race right before Erwin's car caught on fire and he had to swerve at the last minute to avoid Erwin's last place, engulfed car. The trophy dash races featured the top finishers of the IMCA and Street Stock races. The IMCA dash had four drivers and was won by Pike in a grueling match. There were two Street Stock races that featured four cars in the first and seven in the second. The winner of the first was Kiefer' s number three car and the winner of the second was Harley Cook (car 72) takes the lead, but later hits the wall for a no-finish I II still up Pike kept trying to position his car back in first. Perkins, angered by Pike's attempts to regain the lead before the race had started back up, began bumping the back of Pike's car. Race fans in the audi- i ii ii ii iiii ence were divided. Half were cheering for Pike and half were cheering for Perkins. They even went so far as to boo each other. Perkins ended up back in first and Pike ended up dropping out of the race. In the end though, it was number 87, driven by Danny Fitzgerald who came out on top. The Street Stock main event featured 18 cars and the biggest collision of the night. The colli- sion took place in the fi- nal lap after a yellow warning flag had been thrown. There was only one lap remaining after officials lined the cars back up. On the second turn of that final lap, car number 99, driven by Robert Taylor apparently spun out in the middle of the track causing a six cars pile up. Red lights warned all the drivers to stop their cars exactly where they were issued. Driving or moving your car under a red light is, grounds for disqualifica- tion. Cars number 55, 51, 156, 2, and 99 were all black flagged, or disqualified. Some of the drivers pro- tested, some even attempted to return to the race. The confusion of lining up the remaining cars took nearly 20 minutes and in the end only eight cars were left on the track to finish the race. After the delays and dis- qualifications, the remain- ing lap was run again and Kiefer's number three car took the checkered flag. At the end of the races there were many protests by both fans and drivers. Many did not agree with the rules as their favorite driver or car was not allowed to fin- ish. In the heat of Saturday's battle there were few win- ners. Inspection on A/C RI2 Cr 134A 10% cliscbunt on A/C &, Repairs Value jobs, Motors, & Transmissions New & Used Tires Available Honest I.njn [ Automotive 4481 S. Money 4626 Robert Taylor's number 99 Car. After a very short half- time in which the track was watered down and the fans grabbed a hot dog or two, the two main event races took place. The first was a car LMCA race in which Pike's num- ber 23 car grabbed hold of first place early on. Half- way through the race, a yel- low caution flag was thrown after a spin-out. This oc- curred nearly the same time as Jim Perkin's number 87A car was passing Pike. When race officials tried to sort out the mess and put Perkins in first, Pike complained. While the yellow flag was D ii i iii I support the Pahrump Seniors in their attempt to get the VOTE BACK at the Senior Center To the Nye County Commissioners: Name: Address: Telephone #: Bring to the Pahrump Valley Gazette or mail to Pahrump Valley Gazette 1330 Hwy 160 Ste. 3, Pahrump, NV., 89048 or Attention: CharHe Gronda or Gary Hollis, Pahrump Town Office 400 N. Hwy 160 Pahrump, NV., 89048 ii , i Service Forum Pahramp Valley Insurance Life * Group Medical 727-5700 Phone k Fax Roger W. Burnley C.L.U. Pahrump's Only Complete One Stop Music Mar Instruments; Lessons Sales, Service, Rentals & Repair assett Tapes + Compact Disk All Types of Music including Spanish Stmrtin s at $4.99 tape $7.99 diK. .004a,,no,d Over 4,000 Plants in Stock Cactus (702) 727-8155 ~ Fax (702) 727-6303 201 S. Frontage Rd. PRINTING, Inc. Quality offset printing done in PAHRUMP Monday ~ Friday 8am/Spm Saturday ~ 10am/3pm Member Pahrmnp Chamber of Commerce Beatty Chamber of Commerce Death Valley Chamber of Commerce