LAS VEGAS, Nevada — Greg Pursley of Newhall, Calif. won the second annual Star Nursery 200 for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West tonight at the Bullring at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. The win marked the defending series champion’s second consecutive Las Vegas victory. The race finish was quite similar to the 2011 Star Nursery 200 as Pursley and teammate Dylan Kwasniewski dominated the competition and finished one-two.
Kwasniewski, the 17-year-old Las Vegas high school student, earned the pole position in qualifying with a lap of 15.072 sec./89.570 mph. Kwasniewski led the first 12 laps until Pursley took command.
The first caution flag flew on lap 35 when Cassie Gannis stopped at the entrance to the pits but failed to exit the track. The race restarted with Gene Price Motorsports teammates Pursley and Kwasniewski running first and second. The race was halted on lap 54 when John Wood and Ali Jackson crashed in Turn 4. Pursley and Kwasniewski were pulling away from the pack when the caution flag flew again on lap 63 when Braeden Havens spun and crashed in Turn 1.
Kwasniewski had his hands full on lap 70 when Derek Thorn motored past for second place while Eric Holmes was hounding him for position. Kwasniewski slipped back to fifth place by lap 76. Daryl Harr slowed the pace when his engine expired on lap 90. Following a brief clean-up period, the race resumed with Pursley in the lead, followed by Thorn and Kwasniewski. The race hit the halfway break on lap 100 and drivers were allowed to pit. Due to series rules, teams pretty much were restricted to adjusting tire pressure and wedge and adding gasoline.
The race resumed following the 10-minute break and once again the Pursley-Kwasniewski duo pulled away from the pack. Kwasniewski made his move on Pursley on lap 158 and the pair raced side by side for two laps until the teen was able to wrestle away the lead on lap 160. Pursley refused to give up as the battling teammates motored away from their competition. Disaster nearly struck on lap 171 when the pair encountered the lapped car of Jack Sellers. Kwasniewski raced past the lapped car but Pursley was not as fortunate. As he attempted to pass Sellers, the cars bumped car and he was forced to back off the throttle, which allowed Kwasniewski to breathe easy for several laps. Kwasniewski’s breather was a short one as Pursley caught his teammate and made a successful pass just before the caution flag flew for fluid on the track.
The 200-lap grind was reduced to a nine-lap shootout. Pursley took the lead on lap 194 and went on to his second consecutive Las Vegas NASCAR K&N Pro Series West win. Kwasniewski held off Jonathon Gomez for second.
“We had to work harder for it this time,” said Pursley. “We love coming out here to Las Vegas Motor Speedway. “There’s a bunch of great fans out here and Craig Keough of Star Nursery was gracious enough to sponsor this race. We’ve got them (Star Nursery) on the hood and we won for them tonight.
“Gene Price Motorsports gave us an awesome car tonight. Look at the kid, Dylan, man – he’s a racer as you can see. He did a great job. We just had a touch better car than he did tonight.”
Kwasniewski continues to lead the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West points with 306. Second is Pursley at 294 and David Mayhew is third with 281.
NASCAR SUPER LATE MODELS: Cole Custer led the first 20 laps of the NASCAR Super Late Model feature until defending champion Scott Gafforini saw daylight on the inside and took command. Gafforini’s leadership was short-lived, however, as he tangled with lapped cars on lap 24 and crashed in Turn 3. Custer led the field on the restart, followed by Luis Martinez of Long Beach, Calif., and Chris Clyne. Martinez, the evening’s fastest qualifier, drove to the inside of Custer on lap 30 and the pair raced side-by-side for two laps until Martinez gained a clear advantage. Martinez went on to win, followed under the checkered flag by Clyne, Custer, Glenn Burke and Warren Knipper.
NASCAR CHARGERS: Patrick O’Hanley scored his fourth NASCAR Charger won of the 2012 season tonight. James Wingard was second and Kayli Barker finished third. The eight-lap qualifying heat was won by Wingard.
NASCAR BOMBERS: Dallas Simonette won the 25-lap NASCAR Bomber feature. Second was Pete Meyer, third was Jason Kiser. Eight-lap heats were won by Kiser and Meyer.
AMERICAN BAND LEGEND CARS: Due to a rash of spins and crashes, the 25-lap Legend Cars feature hit its time limit and was called complete at Lap 8. Leader Brent Scheidemantle was declared the winner. Jason Irwin was second and Joshua Jackson finished third.
SILVER STAR PLUMBING BANDOLEROS: Caden Carlin won the 12-lap Bandolero Bandit feature, followed to the finish line by Ivan Gudmestad and Gianna Marretti. Noah Gragson won the Bandolero Outlaw feature. Vincent Raucci Jr. was second and Austin Toddy finished third.
NEXT RACE: Saturday, June 16 – STAR NURSERY NIGHT -- NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Chris Trickle Father’s Day Weekend Special. Twin 35-lap NASCAR Super Late Model features. NASCAR Super Stocks, NASCAR Bombers, American Band Legends Cars, Thunder Cars and Silver Star Plumbing Bandoleros.
For more information, please call LVMS at (702) 644-4444 or visit www.LVMS.com. Follow LVMS on Facebook and Twitter.
STAR NURSERY 200 NASCAR K&N PRO SERIES WEST: 1. Greg Pursley (Newhall, Calif.), 2. Dylan Kwasniewski (Las Vegas), 3. Jonathon Gomez (Twin Falls, Idaho), 4. David Mayhew (Atascadero, Calif.), 5. Cameron Hayley (Calgary, Alberta, Canada), 6. Tim Bell (Mountain View, Calif.), 7. Austin Dyne (Malibu, Calif.), 8. Dylan Hutchison (Fair Oaks, Calif.). 9. Taylor Cuzick (Tolleson, Ariz.), 10. Ryan Philpott (Tracy, Calif.), 11. Carl Harr (Edmonton, Alberta, Canada), 12. Braeden Havens (Spokane, Wash.), 13. Jack Sellers (Sacramento, Calif.), 14. Derek Thorn (Lakeport, Calif.), 15. Jessica Brunelli (Hayward, Calif.), 16. Travis Milburn (Eagle, Idaho), 17. Michael Self (Park City, Utah), 18. Mike Haslam (Victoria, British Columbia, Canada), 19. Eric Holmes (Escalon, Calif.), 20. Daryl Harr (Edmonton, Alberta, Canada), 21. Ali Jackson (Glengormley, Northern Ireland), 22. John Wood (Eagle, Idaho), 23. Jason Fensler (Wilton, Calif.), 24. Cassie Gannis (Phoenix, Ariz.), 25. Billy Kann (Tempe, Ariz.), 26. Ronnie Jay (Victoria, British Columbia, Canada).
Time of race: 1 hr., 23 min. Margin of victory: .700 sec. Average speed: 54.217 mph. Caution flags: 10 for 52 laps.
40-lap NASCAR Super Late Model feature: 1. Luis Martinez, 2. Chris Clyne, 3. Cole Custer, 4. Glenn Burke, 5. Warren Knipper, 6. Dennis Rock Jr., 7. Trevor Huddleston, 8. Stan Mullis, 9. Toni McCray, 10. Scott Gafforini, 11. Travis Najbicz, 12. John Thomson, 13. Joe Deguevara.
25-lap NASCAR Super Stock feature: 1. Patrick O’Hanley, 2. James Wingard, 3. Kayli Barker, 4. Chuck Burgess, 5. Mike McKearn, 6. Barbara Borkowski, 7. Kolleen Dresser, 8. Danny Guernsey, 9. David Wendell.
25-lap NASCAR Bomber feature: 1. Dallas Simonette, 2. Pete Meyer, 3. Jason Kiser, 4. Wade Pearson, 5. Steve Borkowski, 6. Martin Sullins, 7. Michael Takami, 8. Jim Merlino, 9. Jason Sullins, 10. Cayla Bronston, 11. Nathan Boss, 12. Judy Rowe.
25-lap American Band Legend Cars feature (reached time limit at Lap 8): 1. Brent Scheidemantle, 2. Jason Irwin, 3. Joshua Jackson, 4. Andrew Muscannell, 5. Tom Lovelady, 6. Nick Halen, 7. Blake Olsen. 8. Robby Guevara, 9. Cheyanne Scindler, 10. Donna Gunther, 11. Nikky Saxon, 12. Tye Mihocko, 13. Matthew Cardenas, 14. Lacie Price, 15. Peyton Saxton, 16. Nick Thigpen, 17. Andrew Porter, 18. Blaine Perkins, 19. Jim Galza, 20. Sam Jacks, 21. Devin Mack, 22. Michael Todd Glazier, 23. Ian Anderson, 24. Dylan Cappelo, 25. Josh Fultz, 26. Justin Irwin, 27. Robert Scott.
12-lap Silver Star Plumbing Bandolero Bandits feature: 1. Caden Carlin, 2. Ivan Gudmestad, 3. Gianna Marretti, 4. Mason Sargent, 5. Chris Trickle, 6. Chaz Mansey, 7. T.J. Ferrari, 8. Kyle Jacks, 9. Tommy Trickle, 10. Philip Root, 11. Megan Ferrari, 12. Gino Marretti, 13. Chase Shackleford.
12-lap Silver Star Plumbing Bandolero Outlaw feature: 1. Noah Gragson, 2. Vincent Raucci Jr., 3. Austin Toddy, 4. Cami Burke, 5. Darren Penniman, 6. Taylor Hooper, 7. Erika Thigpen.