EL CAJON, California — The ASA Truck Series drivers gave an impressive performance at the race on Saturday night at Havasu 95 Speedway. The fans were on their feet for the last ten laps as an intense battle with clean driving gave all the top four drivers a shot at winning the race. There were three-wide runs between Mike Herda, Branden Underwood and Kyle Weatherman. Then side-by-side, two rows deep when Jeff Catlin mixed into that group. The driving talent and maturity of these drivers was incredible and in the end, 19 year old Branden Underwood, from Henderson, Nevada, inched his way to his first victory. When asked how he felt, he was beaming and said “finally…and I’ve never felt so good!” After two and a half seasons in the ASA Truck Series, Underwood kept wondering if he could ever get that elusive win, but with the help of crew chief Dana Stahl and his parents, his run in the #28 Dodge Dakota answered his own question. Another major part of his win he attributes to a last minute spotter change when Carey Mean stepped up from another team to help out the Underwood group. Cary has many years experience in this series and helped Branden be calm and relaxed, choose an interesting high line and sail to victory leading almost every lap of the race.
"Some drivers may be frustrated with second place, but Herda never stops smiling."
“Maturity” has multiple definitions and each of the top drivers demonstrated their own version of word. Underwood had never been so smooth or relaxed as he showed Saturday night as he has become a college student and works hard outside of racing and that growth was reflected in his driving. Finishing first at the last race in Vegas and almost stealing the win from Underwood, Mike Herda in his #03 Foxy Girls Colorado demonstrated amazing truck control when mixing it up three wide more than once without ever being wreckless. In qualifying, Herda was only one one-hundreth off the pole and inches from winning his second race in a row. Some drivers may be frustrated with second place, but Herda never stops smiling and watching him over the last two seasons mature into a smart, aggressive driver has been fun to see unfold. Jeff Catlin may hold the ‘veteran’ title in the series over the other young drivers, but his driving style and by keeping a level head, he has shown a new maturity in his own way. Catlin, in his #1 Barrett Jackson Colorado, took over the points championship lead by only four points and is letting everyone know he understands it isn’t “in the bag” for anyone at this point and will continue to maintain his composure going into the final race in Blythe on October 29th, 2011.
Newcomer, 14 year old Kyle Weatherman, was mature beyond his years as he lifted just a bit in a major three-wide situation into turn one and showed everyone his talent by not causing a big wreck and coming home fourth in his first race with the ASA Truck Series. Not only does Weatherman work on his truck with chassis set-up, he drives like a veteran and we hope he continues to race with our series as respectful as he was in Havasu. Taylor Miinch, in the #5 ATK Motorsports Colorado, had many adversities to overcome as their team had major repairs to make in one week, missed practice Friday night and could have been very frazzled, but Miinch maintained his composure under pressure to finish 5th in the race and stays within four points of fast qualifier Jeff Catlin.
All the drivers put on an amazing race and kept the fans excited and cheering until the checkered flag fell. As the owners of the series, Todd and Lisa McLauchlan feel proud that the entire field demonstrated such integrity for nearly 50 laps of green flag racing and have watched these drivers mature in many ways. With only one race remaining in this economically-challenged season, having all the top five drivers so close in points is a testament to the clean, smart racing that goes on in the ASA Truck Series. Only four points separates the first two teams, Catlin and Miinch. The drivers in third, fourth and fifth are only separated by six points and it is anyone’s position to take home third between Underwood, Herda and Black. The final race at the I-10 Lucas Oil Speedway in Blythe will be exciting as all championship nights seem to be and another season will be complete. We hope that the final race is as exciting and clean as the last two events and everyone comes home a winner. Photos, results and points are all available on our website: www.asatruckseries.com.
Remember to support our series sponsors by using products and services from the following vendors: Jim Van Gordon Racing Engines, Mike Naake Suspension Specialist, QA 1 Shocks, VP Racing Fuels, Hoosier Tires, DJ Safety, Frank's Radios, Luke’s Transmission, Advertising Edge, Mechanix Wear, Mallory/ACCEL/Mr. Gasket, TOYOTA, POLYDyn TX7, Brink Designs and STR.
The ASA Trucks are 2,450 pounds, full tube chassis, 108 inch wheelbase, 375+ horsepower V-8’s, fired by Mr. Gasket’s - Mallory / ACCEL ignition systems and VP Race Fuel, with 2-speed direct drive transmissions and Speedway Engineering aluminum quick change rear ends on 8-inch Hoosier Racing Tires and Allied Racing Wheels and can reach speeds of 105 MPH at the ½ mile TOYOTA Speedway at Irwindale oval and 150 MPH on the 2.1-mile road course at Firebird International Raceway. The ASA Trucks sport exact replica Norris Racing fiberglass bodies in Chevy S-10, Chevy Colorado, Ford Ranger, Dodge Dakota and Toyota Tacoma.
If you would like to find out more about the ASA Truck Series and how your company could be part of the growing excitement across the nation about this dynamic series, contact Todd or Lisa McLauchlan at 619-596-6816 / firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.asatruckseries.com. Our Facebook page is: asa-truck-series and we have a YouTube page as well with exciting videos to view.
To learn more about the ASA Member Tracks and Sanctioned Series in your area, please visit www.asa-racing.com. The American Speed Association started as a single racing series in 1968 and is a fast growing racing sanctioning body today. The ASA Member Track program sanctions dirt and asphalt short tracks along with road courses around the United States, as well as a variety of regional and national touring series. For more information call (386) 258-2221, or send an email to email@example.com. The latest news and information from all the racetracks and tours involved in the ASA can be found by visiting www.ASA-Racing.com. ASA®, ASA Racing®, American Speed Association® are registered trademarks of Racing Speed Associates, LLC.