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Keeping Pace

Thu., July 29, 2010, 9:30 p.m.

RMCS Heads North for Big Idaho 200 Weekend

RMCS logo. (Courtesy D. Shannon)
RMCS logo. (Courtesy D. Shannon)

Rocky Mountain Challenge Series hits Stateline Speedway with a tight points battle for the 2010 championship. This is the third consecutive season the Boise-based touring division has been part of the NAPA Idaho 200 weekend.

Courtesy: RMCS Media Relations

BOISE, IDAHO (July 29, 2010) For the third year in a row the Boise based CarbonX
Rocky Mountain Challenge Series will travel to Northern Idaho for the annual Idaho
200 race weekend staged at the fast and tricky quarter-mile oval of Stateline
Stadium Speedway in Post Falls, Idaho. The 100-lap Napa Auto Parts Duel for the 200
is round seven of the ten race championship series with title implications on the
line for series regulars.

The storylines are plenty for the popular Late Model Stock Car touring series with
the top three competitors separated by just 12-points and the top five competitors
are within 154-points of each other. Through six races this season there have been
four first time winners and only one repeat winner. The race this Saturday night
could make a break the season for several drivers.

Steve Jones of Boise leads the point standings by six points on the strength of two
victories, four top five and five top ten performances. Jones, a multi-time champion
at Magic Valley Speedway in Twin Falls, Idaho, has struggled in the RMCS until this
season. “It took us several years to get all the pieces in place and now that
we finally have, our performances are speaking for themselves,” Jones said.
“We feel we can win at each track and that includes Stateline. I am looking
forward to the event."

Sitting just six points behind Jones is first year RMCS competitor Brett Thompson
from Jerome, Idaho. Thompson has been on a roll since the opening round scoring five
top three performances including his first career win at Meridian Speedway back in
June. “We have struggled a bit with qualifying but we have been real solid in
each race,” Thompson said. “With only four races left to go in the
season we are not going to put ourselves in a position to go backwards so we will be
pretty cautious at Stateline.”

2007 RMCS champion John Newhouse of Twin Falls, Idaho only planned on a partial
schedule this season but with all six starts finishing in the top ten, the former
champion is in third place in the standings only six points out of second. “We
have been pretty low key this year,” Newhouse offered. “If we can get
through Stateline with a good finish, I like our chances the rest of the
year.” Newhouse finished 4th in last year’s race.

Making his first Stateline start this weekend is multi-time Rocky Mountain Raceways
champion Lynn Hardy out of Salt Lake City. Hardy holds down the fourth spot in the
standings on the strength of four top five and five top ten finishes.

Two-time Series champion Dave Minegar of Boise is back in the championship hunt with
two top five and three top ten finishes in the last four races. Minegar is eager to
get back to Stateline after missing last year’s edition to be home with his
wife and newborn son Ethan. “I am excited to get back to Stateline,”
Minegar said. “It is a fun racetrack to drive and I know the fans will see an
awesome show.”

Thane Alderman from Las Vegas, NV will tow over 1100 miles for the 100-lap contest
on Saturday making his third Stateline start. Two years ago Alderman won the event
and last year he finished 14th after a cut tire dropped him a couple laps down.
Alderman is sixth in the point standings with three top five and five top ten
finishes this season. “It is a long way to go to race but I love this
series,” Alderman said, “John Gomez and Jim Wulfenstein have helped me a
bunch this year and I could not be doing this without them. I obviously like
Stateline having won there a couple of years ago. We think we will be pretty good on
Saturday night.”

Bruce Quale out of Twin Falls, Idaho missed last year race but is having a career
season this year in the RMCS after picking up his first career victory. Quale is
seventh in the standings with one win and four top ten finishes this season.

The top A-1 Heating and Air Conditioning Rookie-of-the-Year competitor Eric Rhead
out of West Valley, Utah holds down the eighth position in the standings having
scored his first career series win two weeks at RMR. “I am really excited
about racing at Stateline,” Rhead said. “People say it is a lot like RMR
just a bit smaller.”

Travis Monett from Springcreek, NV teaches school during the year but summer is for
racing. Monett has two top five finishes this season after several races with
mechanical issues. He is making his second trip to the North Idaho quarter-mile
finishing 13th two years ago.

Nine of the top ten driver’s in the point standings will be represented with
Zan Sharp, Dylan Caldwell, Jonathon Gomez, Craig Bell, John Dillon, Lonnie Lowder,
and Joe Miller also making the tow.

Joe Miller from Tooele, UT is11th in the point standings with five starts this
season. He finished 19th two years ago at Stateline but has new horsepower under the
hood for this event.

Zan Sharp out of Wellsville, UT is a former two-time RMCS champion but is only
running a partial schedule this season sitting 12th in the overall standings. Last
season Sharp won the Friday night INSSA event and finished second in the RMCS
feature before finishing 18th in the Idaho 200 with mechanical issues.

Lonnie Lowder from Twin Falls, Idaho is another A-1 Heating and Air Conditioning
Rookie candidate with four starts this season and one top ten finish. Lowder is 13th
in the point standings and is making his inaugural trip to Stateline.

Dylan Caldwell of Nampa, Idaho is heading to Stateline for the second year finishing
11th in last year’s RMCS race. Caldwell has three starts this season with one
top five and two top ten performances. Caldwell also finished 21st in the Idaho 200
last season.

Jonathon Gomez out of Twin Falls, Idaho will make his second start of the season
this weekend. Gomez plans to run all three races over the weekend and is taking a
break from his NASCAR and SRL campaign. Gomez finished 15th in the RMCS race last
year and fifth in the Idaho 200. He is also the RMCS track record holder at
Stateline with a quick lap of 13.466 seconds. “I am really looking forward to
the racing this weekend,” Gomez said. “I grew up in the Spokane area so
I will have a chance to see a lot of family and friends. Plus, you can’t beat
three days of racing.”

John Dillon of Eagle, Idaho is the 2009 RMCS champion but is only making a handful
of starts this season. In two starts this year he has one win and one fifth place
performance. Dillon finished third in last year’s race at Stateline.

Rounding out the RMCS contingent heading up to Stateline is defending race winner
Craig Bell from Kuna, Idaho. Bell has five career series wins in 50 career series
starts, he is third on the all-time lap leader chart, third all-time in laps
completed, first all-time in career top five finishes (33), and third all-time in
top ten finishes (41). Bell drives a team car for Minegar Racing.

Completing the starting grid for the RMCS 100-lap Duel for the 200 will be several
local competitors from the Spokane area. The RMCS inverts up to 20-cars for the race
and awards points for qualifying, heat race finish, main event finish, and passing
points for the main event passed on original starting position. The top six points
finishers in the race will be locked in to the Idaho 200 on Sunday joining the top
six finishers from Friday nights INSSA event. For the second year in a row, the
Idaho 200 will be run under the RMCS banner and officiated by the RMCS technical and
administrative team.

The RMCS utilizes a racing format not found in ANY other regional touring series
around the country. The top 20 qualifiers are inverted for every race putting fast
time in the 20th starting position. 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 15th 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 for each

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 onto MailScanner has
detected a possible fraud attempt from "" claiming to be Follow all the racing action from throughout the West by logging
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claiming to be This event will be “Near Live” on
Racing West all day Saturday so log on and have fun!

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Keeping Pace

Motorsports correspondent Doug Pace keeps up with motorsports news and notes from around the region.