TOCCOA, Ga. – Story and audio by Managing Editor Jacob Seelman for Speed77 Radio, Race Chaser Online and USCS Racing – Chris Seelman photo –
After being noncommittal about returning south for any www.rockauto.com USCS 600 Sprint Car Series events in 2015 after winning last year’s season finale, Johnstown, Pa. veteran Jim Young made a resounding statement on Friday night at Toccoa Raceway.
Young took the lead on lap three of the 20-lap Toccoa Tangle preliminary A-main and then held off a spirited charge from Robby Hoffmann to notch his fourth-career and second-straight USCS mini-sprint victory in dominant fashion.
“I just (had to keep) hitting my marks,” Young said in www.rockauto.com USCS Victory Lane. “I was counting the laps down – I kept thinking, ‘It’s better than being at home. It’s snowing at home.’ It might be a little cold here, but it’s good.”
Ocala, Fla. rookie Hoffmann, making his first-career USCS mini sprint start, hung on for second but rued the final caution that took the element of slower traffic out of the picture and kept him from challenging in the closing stages.
“I think [that was the difference],” Hoffman said following the race. “We had a really good run – it didn’t start out good – but we [made] our way up through the field and gave Jim a little bit of a run [for his money]. Just didn’t have enough there after that caution.”
Fellow rookie Robbie Smith, from Ocala, Fla., rounded out the podium in third in his USCS debut. Six-time series winner Rick Goss started on the K&N Filters Pole Position but dropped back to fourth at the checkered flag and Sanford, Florida’s Dirk Miller capped off the top five.
Deland, Fla. native Raelynn Moss advanced eight spots in the main event to finish sixth, followed by fellow Floridian David Hall in seventh. North Carolina young gun Jackson Wellman was the hard charger of the night in eighth, followed by Snellville, Ga. rookie Remeno Loyal, who crossed the line ninth. Another home state driver, Alpharetta’s Bob Trapino, completed the top ten at the twin checkers.
The event featured three caution periods – one on lap five when former Georgia Mini Sprint Ass’n champion Shane Werner slowed to a stop in turn one, and the second on lap seven when Matt McCullough flipped in turn two, drawing a red flag. The final yellow came with four laps to go and set up a dash to the finish after the No. 30 of John Crowder stopped on the turn three end of the race track.
Mike Magic kicked off the night by grabbing the win in the Hoosier Tire Speed Dash, just a week after flipping his mini-sprint at Tennessee National Raceway. Werner took the win in the Engler Machine and Tool First Heat. Dirk Miller notched the win in the www.rockauto.com Second Heat.
McCullough was the provisional polesitter after scoring the most passing points in heat race action, but following a four being pulled in the K&N Inversion Draw, Rick Goss grabbed the K&N Filters Pole Position. Eighth-place Wellman passed the most cars in the main event (eleven) to garner the Wilwood Disc Brakes Hard Charger Award.
The www.rockauto.com USCS 600 Sprint Car Series season continues on Saturday night, March 28 with a second round of action at Toccoa Raceway.
Audio with race winner Jim Young:
Audio with runner-up Robby Hoffmann:
RESULTS: www.rockauto.com USCS 600 Sprint Car Series @ Toccoa Raceway; March 27, 2015
Hoosier Tire Speed Dash: Mike Magic, Matt McCullough, Remeno Loyal, Brandon Taylor, Michael Barton, Bob Trapino.
Engler Machine and Tool First Heat: Shane Werner, Jim Young, Rick Goss, David Hall, Robbie Smith, Michael Barton, Chris Huffman, Mike Magic, Carlie Yent, Jackson Wellman.
www.rockauto.com Second Heat: Dirk Miller, Matt McCullough, Robbie Hoffmann, Eddie Moss, Bob Trapino, John Crowder, Raelynn Moss, Romeno Loyal, Brandon Taylor.
www.rockauto.com USCS 600 Sprint A-Main 20 laps:
- #8Y – Jim Young, Johnstown, PA
- #66 – Robby Hoffmann, Lithia, FL
- #95 – Robbie Smith, Ocala, FL
- #9R – Rick Goss, Charlotte, N.C.
- #68 – Dirk Miller, Sanford, FL
- #23 – Raelynn Moss, Deland, FL +8
- #67 – David Hall, Casselberry, FL
- #9W – Jackson Wellman, Belmont, NC
- #2X – Remeno Loyal, Snellville, GA
- #98 – Bob Trapino, Alpharetta, GA
- #21B – Michael Barton, Castalian Springs, TN
- #41 – Chris Huffman, Harlem, GA
- #33 – Carlie Yent, Tampa, FL
- #30 – John Crowder, Summerfield, FL
- #14 – Matt McCullough, Atlanta, GA
- #48 – Shane Werner, McDonough, GA
- #8 – Eddie Moss Jr., Deland, FL
- #5M – Mike Magic, Winder, GA (DNS)
- #07 – Brandon Taylor, Cumming, GA (DNS)
USCS 600 Sprint Race Awards:
Hoosier Tire Speed Dash: #5M – Mike Magic
Engler Machine and Tool First Heat: #48 – Shane Werner
www.rockauto.com Second Heat: #68 – Dirk Miller
K&N Filters Pole Award: #9R – Rick Goss
Bell Helmets Focus Award: #66 – Robby Hoffmann
K&N Filters Podium (3rd place) Award: #95 – Robbie Smith
Wilwood Disc Brakes Hard Charger Award: #23 – Raelynn Moss
Brown and Miller Racing Solutions Fourth Place Award: #9R – Rick Goss
Keizer Aluminum Wheels Top Five Award: #68 – Dirk Miller
Saldana Racing Products Super Sixth Award: #23 – Raelynn Moss
DMI/Bulldog Rear Ends Top Ten Award: #21B – Michael Barton