BOISE, Idaho — Jason Jefferson, who hails from Washington state but now calls Parker, AZ home, made his second start in the CarbonX Rocky Mountain Series payoff claiming the Sharp Powder Coating Fast Time Award and driving from the tail of the field to capture the win in the NAPA Auto Parts "200" at Magic Valley Speedway Saturday night.
" Starting Shotgun on the Field Proved Format Played Into His Hand"
Jefferson, driving the Dave Reed owned Approved Memory/Voli sponsored Ford, topped the speed charts in qualifying with a quick lap of 14.464 seconds around the 1/3-mile paved oval of Magic Valley Speedway. Following Jefferson in qualifying that would set the grid for the first 75-lap segment of the 200-lap race was Jeff Hillock, championship rivals Steve Jones and Bruce Quale with A-1 Heating & Air Conditioning Rookie-of-the-Year leader Tyler Bailey rounding out the top five.
The race was broken into three segments consisting of 75-laps in the first, 75-laps in the second, and a final 50-lap dash to the finish.
Dan Lowther led the first twelve circuits before giving way to Chris Fenton who held the point until Jeff Hillock took over on lap 45. Hillock would lead the final 30-laps of segment one. The invert to start the race was 15.
A five minute break followed lap 75 where teams could make chassis adjustments or change tires from their race allotment. With changes made the action resumed with a seven car invert putting John Nesmith up front where he would lead the entire second segment.
Segment three lined up with an invert of two after a second five minute break. TJ Woodhall had drove perhaps his best race to date and put himself in the catbirds seat for the final 50-laps. Woodhall proved that he has turned his racing program around and held tough at the front of the field through lap 175.
Driving a patient race and learning the nuances of the RMCS, Jefferson used tire strategy to give himself the best hand late in the race. He took the lead from Woodhall on lap 176 and never looked back. Woodhall would not go away and made several attempts for the position but Jefferson closed the door each time.
Jefferson crossed the line 1.9 seconds ahead of Woodhall to claim his first CarbonX Rocky Mountain Challenge Series victory in his second series start. Woodhall held on for his best career finish of second followed by John Nesmith, Rick Fowble, and Chris Fenton.
"We really needed a win," Jefferson said. "It has been a long time coming and I really love the RMCS. What a fun series to race in. Mike (Minegar) and his team do a great job and I look forward to racing with them again. We had a really good race car and it was a matter of just logging laps hoping not to go a lap down until we could put on new tires for the final segment."
Championship leader Bruce Quale of Twin Falls posted his worse finish of the season with a sixth place effort. The finish was enough to boost his point total over Steve Jones who finished laps down with a broken sway bar ten laps from the finish. Rounding out the top ten were Quint Whitman, Bailey, Jeff Wade and Jones.
The point championship is still up for grabs but will require both kinds of luck in order to shake up the standings. Quale leads Jones by 82-points heading into the final two races of the season. Nesmith closed the gap on Jones to within 61-points while Tyler Bailey and Rick Fowble maintain fourth and fifth place respectively.
Travis Monett moves up to sixth place in the standings while Thane Alderman falls to seventh after missing the event due to engine issues. TJ Woodhall climbs to eighth in the standings with Jeremy Doss and Morgan Rasmussen rounding out the top ten.
The next race for the CarbonX Rocky Mountain Challenge Series is Saturday, September 1 at Rocky Mountain Raceways in Utah. For all the latest news and information about the series log onto www.rmcsracing.com.
CarbonX, the world leader in fire protective clothing, is in its fifth season as title sponsor of the RMCS. Along with Century Boatland based in Twin Falls, the two companies provide significant event and series support. Since 1985, Century Boatland has been the Magic Valley headquarters for new and used recreational, pleasure, and fishing boats.
The RMCS utilizes a racing format not found in ANY other regional touring series around the country. The RMCS inverts up to the top 20 from qualifying putting the fast qualifiers at the back to start each race. This format ensures race fans see what they paid for and that is passing. Each driver is awarded three points per position gained in the event. Points are also awarded for qualifying and heat race finishes. Through the history of the series, the winning driver has averaged a 12th place starting position. To ensure competition, the RMCS pays it purse based on total point accumulation for the event and provides several special performance awards at each race.
The series is supported by a great family of sponsors including: CarbonX, Century Boatland, Project Filter, ESI, A-1 Heating & Air Conditioning, Sharp Powder Coating, Five Star Racing Bodies, Hoosier Racing Tires, Frank's Radios, Performance Solutions, Kidd's Performance and Dyno, Joes Racing Products, PPG Paint, Circle Racing Wheels, and Mike Minegar's Auto Body.
About The CarbonX Rocky Mountain Challenge Series
The CarbonX Rocky Mountain Challenge Series is a regional touring series that allows all competitors to race and gain experience on different types of racetracks. It is a high-quality professional racing series that offers maximum opportunity at an affordable price serving the intermountain West. The motto of the series is to "Race Hard and Have Fun!" For all the latest news and information regarding the CarbonX Rocky Mountain Challenge Series log on to our website at www.rmcsracing.com.
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