It's not often that racing takes on a biblical aspect, but it did so Saturday night in the Super Outlaw Karts 500cc open main - with a replay of the "David and Goliath" story.
The scene was set in hot laps for the 500cc Open class when Don Jackson of Gardnerville came into contact with Carson City driver Kyle Dargert. The impact sent Dargert flipping down the front straightaway, thankfully ending with an uninjured driver, but a seriously bent racing kart.
Dargert, trying to stay in the hunt for the season points race, rented a 125cc kart from Corning, Calif., racer Joshua Diel. The rules say that a kart of lesser displacement can move up in class, so Dargert gave away 375 cubic centimeters displacement and a lot of horsepower to run with the 500cc opens.
Dargert struggled with the unfamiliar kart in the 10-lap heat race, but by the end was turning respectable lap times. A little suspension tuning and a good starting position (due to inverting the field) gave him a shot at a decent finishing position. Dargert was hooked up from the green flag in a race that went wire-to-wire without a caution, running second behind Gardnerville's Cheyne Jackson for 18 of the scheduled 20 laps.
Just over a lap short of the checker, Jackson blew a radiator hose and stopped shy of the finish line on the front straight. Dargert blew by, taking the white flag and holding off a charging Bill Brown of Carson City to take the win. Brown finished second, followed by Stuart Goehring of Tahoe Paradise, Reno's Larry Devlin (sitting in for dad Randy), and fast qualifier Don Jackson of Gardnerville rounding out the top five. Jackson and Goehring took the heat race wins, and Jackson captured the trophy dash.
The Box Stock kids also put on a tremendous show, also running green from flag to flag. The full inversion put the fast drivers at the back, but it wasn't long before points leader Jordan Dargert worked his way to the front.
Matt Vallarino of Carson City used some heads-up driving skills to hold off Gardnerville's James Harrington for second. Nathan Buffa of Zephyr Cove finished fourth with Stevie Hettrick taking fifth in his first race of the season. Dargert and Harrington won the heat races, and Dargert repeated as trophy dash victor.
Only two 125cc karts took the green flag, with Joshua Diel of Corning, Calif., taking three wins (heat, dash, and main) over sister Samantha.
Nicole Buffa of Zephyr Cove continued her winning ways in the beginner division for restricted Box Stock karts, completing a hat trick with three wins. Alex Devlin finished second in all three events, with four year old Jenny Purcell third every time.
RENO FERNLEY RACEWAY
Carson City drivers scored a 1-2-3-4 finish in the street stock main at the Reno Fernley Raceway 3/8 mile dirt oval on Saturday night. Matt Ramthun scored yet another victory, closely followed by Dean Cichovicz and Matt Ramthun in second and third and Allen Boles in fourth. Cichovicz won the first heat and the trophy dash, with the second heat going to Chilcoot,
Calif., driver Don Spence.
The best local finishers in the IMCA Modified division main were Robert Miller (Gardnerville) in sixth and Bob Ruhberg (Carson City) in ninth. Miller also took fourth in the Outlaw Modified main. Dee Dee Pierson of Silver Springs won the Pure Stock main and trophy dash. Carson City's Jon Crandall won the Hobby Stock main with Joe Aigner of Stagecoach in third. Carson
City's Bonnie Garnett had overheating problems and finished eighth. Aigner won the second heat race, while the trophy dash and second heat victories went to Joe Militello of Reno. No local drivers competed in the modified compact division.