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Rip-Roaring Championship finale Saturday. 
Field filled with champions. Close point races to be decided.

By Bob Burbach
Marysville CA - October 3, 2010 --- Once again, a host of championship drivers will be headed for Marysville Raceway Park’s final event of 2010. Not only will the field be peppered with stars, the season championship in 2 of MRP’s divisions will be decided. One of the divisions has but 1 point separating the top 2 contestants.

Saturday night, Paul and Kathy Hawes will host the 2010 season finale at the west’s most spectacular short dirt track. Once again the racing community at large will continue to support MRP’s rebirth. For those who missed September 18th’s amazing event, a similar cast of characters will jam the pits Saturday. 91 cars participated in that event and there’s no reason to think it wouldn’t be the same this week. Like the race on September 18th, this event is becoming yet another “Race of Champions” as more and more drivers make their intentions known. With no other racing scheduled in northern California, MRP will be the destination for a great field of stars.

The impressive field will feature perennial winged sprint car champion Andy Forsberg (who will be looking for 2 in a row at MRP) and 3 time MRP Champion Colby Wiesz who has 45 victories at MRP. While the MRP Winged Sprint Car point championship is already determined, MRP is getting a lot of attention from some of the finest sprint car drivers in California. The last time out, a rocket fast, non-stop feature was taken by Forsberg. As promoter Hawes and the MRP staff continue to improve the surface, the racing is getting faster and more frenzied all the time. Forsberg brought the field home in 4 minutes and 22 seconds last time out as spectacular multi-groove, racing kept the fans on the edge through the entire program. The track also allowed the leaders to pick their way through traffic using the entire width of the newly improved raceway surface. Champion drivers Brent Dothage (3 MRP titles) and 2004 champion Mike Monahan will add spice to an already volatile winged sprint car mixture. 2007 Champion Jeremy Burt is expected to join the field as well.

As swift and spectacular as the MRP Winged Sprinters were last time out, all of the other classes benefited from the hooked up track and showcased outstanding racing all night.

The MRP Mini Stock class has its champion. Once again Misty Castleberry got to the front early in the point championship and never looked back. She won 10 straight during the season and clinched with 2 races left. However it’s also been a great ride for Jimmy Ford this year. While 3rd place point getter, Jason Clayton has an outside shot at 2nd, Ford seems to be poised not only for an easy 2nd in standings…but he is also ready to beat in the door and grab a victory in 2010. That is something that is long overdue.

The Rookie of the Year battle in the division has a separation of only 6 points. Jacob Davis trails Tyler Peterson after Jacobs put together an outstanding run last time out. Peterson did not finish in that race. Davis’ great run combined with Peterson’s bad luck has made this one worth looking at.

The closest point race for a title is in the MRP Super Stock class. Wicked bad luck for point leader Jeff Olschowka on the biggest night of the year combined with a feature event victory for Corey Hall has made this one a toss-up…or nearly. Olschowka will bring a 1-point lead to the slugfest Saturday. That one fact will make it impossible for a tie to determine the title. No combination of points can create a tie. If Hall can win, Olschowka cannot beat him in the title chase. On the other hand, if Olschowka stays ahead of Hall, nothing Hall can do can wrest the title from Olschowka. This is a real nail biter.

In the MRP Rookie of the year race in this division, a 4-point separation keeps the contenders apart. Josh Miller is just 4 markers ahead of Raul Casteneda in the closest rookie battle in a decade.

Champion drivers Jerry Bartlett and Phil Marino are expected to return. This division presented 23 cars last time out. Marino was fast with no luck and Bartlett was in night #1 of getting the bugs worked out of his sleek new hot rod. Look for both drivers to be factors Saturday.

The Performance Auto Supply Wingless Warriors will be back and 11 points separate leader Terry Schank and young star Taylor Simas. The Schank/Simas battle for the title has been a thriller all year long. In the last 2 events Schank has managed to take a run at Simas who led the series for most of the season. Both drivers are feature winners this year. 

The big problem here is that there are so many talented racers in this class that the 2 leaders have to fight not only amongst themselves, but with all the others as well. Of late, there have been so many drivers capable of winning that this class has been a whirlwind of action. Champion driver Billy Wallace is always a factor as is Jeremy Hawes. Wallace was in a 1st lap wreck last time out and Hawes was slugging it out in a pack that included 5 other racers. Hawes won convincingly a few weeks ago. With a little luck both racers will contest for the win. Add to that, super smooth and super fast drivers Brian Southers and Brett Youngman, it’s a thrilling mix. Josh Vieira was particularly quick last time out and carved his way to the front from deep in the field. Youngman crashed with Wallace and Southers won. How do you pick this one?

The Pro 4 title is decided and P. J. Petersen is the youngest champ ever. Castleberry is the Rookie of the Year. This 4-cylinder sprint car class has produced a multitude of winners during the season. They will all be at MRP Saturday.

As stated in earlier releases: In answer to several inquiries brought to this observer, promoter Paul Hawes is actively working on the race schedule for 2011. The postponed Sherm Toller Open shows will be on the 2011 schedule and will be the opening events on next year’s calendar.

Pit gate opens at 3PM. The spectator gates will open at 5 PM with Hot Laps at 6 PM. IMPORTANT: The first race will start after hot laps at about 6:30. 

Note: Please make this observer aware of any names that are misspelled or incorrect. The text is based on information we have at the time of its release.