April 11, 2015 - The young gun Buddy Shepherd and crew celebrated once again in victory lane to earn their second win of their sophomore late model year, and their first win on the fast 1/2 mile banked oval at Kern County Raceway Park! And shared the win with one of their sponsors, H & M MOTORSPORTS at victory lane. Buddy currently leads the points race at both Madera Speedway and Kern County Raceway Park!
The win didn't come easy. First the team was trying to get an oil leak under control which plagued them throughout the entire practice on Friday night and spilled over into Saturday. Buddy's team worked hard to get him and his hot rod out for qualifying only to have a plug wire pop off while making his run. Their determination earned them a six place qualifying run, the invert put Buddy on the pole for the start of the first 35 lap main event, however, he chose to start on the outside front row. Note: This is the first time that lady luck has gone his way, starting him on the front row since he began his late model racing career last season at the age of 14. Once the green flag waved for the first of two 35 lap main events scheduled, his win didn't come easy as there were two yellows in the 35 lap main event. He had an AMAZING start and jumped out into the lead, holding off all the heavy hitters behind him. Once he got his groove on, he was able to get a little breathing room between him and the second place car. The first yellow came out about two-thirds of the way through with the second making it a green, white, checkered dash to the end. Buddy chose the outside front row for both, he bolted into the lead with stellar restarts! He had to be on top of the wheel since the driver starting on the inside of him was the winner of the opening race at KCRP. Buddy crossed the finish line with a respectable win, theBuddy Shepherd Racing Team celebration was on in victory lane. "I made sure I had a good spotter up there!".
Once Buddy's hot rod sat in tech for a bit after the celebration, his left front tire went flat. Apparently he ran over some debris on the track towards the end of the race, evidence showed by a hole in the tire. As all the cars were in a mandatory impound after the first main and tech, Buddy had to take his hot rod back to the pit to replace the tire. Unfortunately ,1) after passing tech, he was sent back to the rear of the line up for the second main for leaving impound and 2) the crew had to replace the tire with another that had multiple laps on it. We can only run the tires that we qualified on for the entire night, no exceptions can a new tire be bolted on, per track rules.
Even with the handicap of the worn out left front tire for the entire second main, Buddy pulled out a third place finish. Making an awesome run on the outside at the start of the race, Buddy drove his hot rod to the front, but without any yellows there was just too much time lost to make a run at the two cars in front of him.
Buddy and his team are very stoked on their win and performance, they're looking forward to Race #2 at Madera Speedway in a few weeks.
Thanks to my sponsors: D'ANGELOS Automotive and Industrial Coatings, AXALTA, H & M MOTORSPORTS, Cow-Boy Bail Bonds, Advanced Distribution, H & S Body Works and Towing, RTS, Crystal Pools, HONDO, Inc., Schaeffer's Racing Oil, RaceHard and Ron's Rear Ends. Special Thanks: John and Susan Bentley, Big John and Dan James.
Thanks to my team: Mike, Derek, Joel, Tom, Gary, Bo, John, Andy, Joe, dad and mom.
Next Race: April 25, 2015 @ Madera Speedway.