PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA (September 16, 2023) – California is an incredibly beautiful state with equal access to so many different environments – the pacific coast, the lush and towering Sequoia National Park, the internationally renowned vineyards, the booming metropolitan areas and of course the majestic mountains. These mountains are showcased when you head east towards Placerville. After his fifth place finish on Friday night over at Kings Speedway powered by Keller Motors in Hanford, California in the 4th Annual Tom Tarlton Classic, Carson Macedo and the Jason Johnson Racing (JJR) team trucked Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT) style over to Placerville Speedway for the Federated Auto Parts 49er Gold Rush Challenge. Since 2020 this event has been forced to be canceled due to COVID in 2020 and being designated a staging and camping area for fire crews and safety personnel battling the wild fires in the area in 2021 and 2022, so the World of Outlaws NOS Energy Drink Sprint Car Series and the traveling stars of the sport were excited to be back at the demanding quarter mile bullring in Hangtown. The pit area filled up briskly as there were 38 teams that registered to race on Saturday night. There was a nice mix between World of Outlaws competitors and the always tough California contingent of talent.
The pits were bustling with activity as the race crews prepared their equipment for their drivers. After hot laps were completed it was time for Low-E Insulation Qualifying. Because of the amount of entries the field would be split into two equal groups for time trials. Carson would be the tenth driver to attack the track in Group A aboard the Albaugh – Your Alternative/Smith Titanium/High Performance Lubricants #41 Maxim in the race against time. These smaller tracks are unforgiving, so any small mistake shows up big against the clock. The goal is to run a perfect lap, or at least as close to perfect as you can get, so you do not give up any time on the clock. When it was Carson’s turn to compete his Kistler Engines power came to life and was ready to help him meet his goals. He lowered his right K1 Race Gear racing shoe and began to build up his speed as he headed towards the green flag. When he arrived the clock began to tick as he executed his speed plan. He raced around Placerville like he was late for a date on lap one. When he arrived at the start/finish line to end his first lap it was clocked at 10.634 seconds. He kept his speed and momentum moving forward through turns one and two before hustling down the backstretch and into the last set of turns. When the numbers came up on the stopwatch for lap two they read 10.615 seconds. The better of his two laps was seventh quick overall in Group A as Chase Randall was the fastest in that set with a lap of 10.355 seconds. But it was Michael “Buddy” Kofoid in Group B that was the fastest driver overall on the night at 10.353 seconds to earn the Simpson Quick Time Award.
With the lineups for the 10-lap heat races being finalized and posted, Carson would find his car number and name listed in the first of four heat races where the top five finishers would lock down transfer positions in the feature event at the end of the night. As an added bonus, the heat race winners and runner-up finishers would get a shot to race in the dash for their starting spots in the first four rows of the A-Main feature. Based on where he placed in the final time trial order, Carson would get started Tarlton and Son/Larry Davis Farms/Vortex Racing Products #41 rolling from the fourth starting spot beside The TrueTimber #5 of Spencer Bayston. Chase Randall and Kalib Henry would be on the front row with Sheldon Haudenschild and Logan Schuchart in row three. Brock Zearfoss, Kaleb Montgomery, Nick Parker, and Ashton Torgerson filled in rows four and five as they field aligned for the start.
The field was set for heat race competition behind the Toyota Tundra Pace Truck. The front row starters slowly paced the field to the chalk stripe laid across turn four and when they arrived the mashed the loud pedal. Kalib Henry was to the first to arrive to turn one on the outside with Carson Macedo diving in low under Chase Randall. Randall turned down and made contact with Macedo while racing for second with Macedo coming out of turn two with the position. Randall was following in third with Bayston monitoring from fourth. Kalib Henry was showing the way around Placerville Speedway with Carson working the low side trying to make up some ground. When the white flag was unveiled it was still Henry leading Macedo and Randall. He would not be denied as he raced to the heat race victory by 0.717 seconds ahead of Macedo, Randall and Bayston with Sheldon Haudenschild bringing the NOS Energy Drink #17 home in the fifth and final transfer spot.
For the second night in a row, Carson earned a spot in the 8-lap Toyota Dash. He would head to the frontstretch to draw for his starting position in the dash with the seven other drivers. It was his series leading 40th World of Outlaws dash in 2023. When it was his turn to stick his paw into the oversized NOS Energy Drink can he pulled out the ‘4’ pill, which put him on the outside of row two for the race. Justin Sanders and James McFadden would situate themselves on the front row with Michael “Buddy” Kofoid Joining Carson in row two. Rico Abreu and Kalib Henry paced from row three with Dylan Bloomfield and Corey Day in the final row. When they were called to the track their engines fired and they were ready to race. James McFadden wasted no time driving into the lead over Sanders at the start with Carson Macedo battling closely with Kofoid for third in the first set of turns. The two made contact racing hard with Kofoid holding on and driving into the third position. Carson was shuffled back to fifth as Rico Abreu used the opportunity to pass the forty-one. A lap later Corey Day drove by putting Carson back in the sixth position. Meanwhile out front McFadden had the Roth Motorsports #83 on rails and was racing in clean air ahead of Sanders. James McFadden raced to the win to earn the pole position for the feature, He was followed across the finish line by Justin Sanders, Michael “Buddy” Kofoid, and Rico Abreu with Corey Day rounding out the top five. Carson raced home in sixth aboard the Albaugh – Your Alternative #41 Maxim with Kalib Henry and Dylan Bloomfield rounding out the finishing order.
The horn sounded alerting the teams to finish up their work in eight minutes in preparation for the 40-lap Federated Auto Parts 49er Gold Rush Classic feature at Placerville Speedway. Work on Saturday night for Carson would begin from row three in the sixth starting position with fellow Central Valley resident Corey Day starting alongside him in the Sanders Engineering #14.
After the traditional four-wide salute to the fans the drivers raced back into their two-by-two starting formation to ready themselves for the green flag drop. When they exited turn four, polesitter James McFadden hit the accelerator and the field was off to the races at Placerville Speedway! At the end of the first lap it was McFadden leading the field ahead of Justin Sanders and Michael “Buddy” Kofoid. Carson moved by Corey Day when the green flag waved and was wheeling the Albaugh – Your Alternative #41 in the fifth spot and looking to use his speed and courage to his advantage. Corey Day wasn’t about to surrender as he ripped back by to reclaim the fifth position one lap later.
With 5 laps in the books the first yellow flag was displayed. It was for 10-time WoO champion Donny Schatz who rolled to a stop in between turns three and four. James McFadden was leading over his teammate Michael “Buddy” Kofoid, Justin Sanders, Rico Abreu and Corey Day. Carson would restart from the sixth spot. When the green flag came back out the two Roth Motorsports drivers were dueling for the lead with McFadden holding on to it and Kofoid challenging him. Carson was able to gain a spot on the start and was running in the fifth spot.
They were able to get two more laps in before action was slowed again as the yellow lights were turned on for Tanner Carrick and Logan Schuchart who tangled after Schuchart got sideways entering turn one. The field paced around and prepared to go back to racing with 33 laps to go. McFadden brought the field back up to speed as he maintained his lead over Kofoid. Carson drove the Tarlton and Son #41 up into the show position with Rico Abreu right behind. The high speed action only lasted two more laps before the yellow flag was out again, this time for Michael Faccinto’s #1x who exited the track.
The green lights were lit back up with 31 laps to go as James McFadden set the pace with Kofoid stalking him after the double file restart. Rico Abreu took the third spot back from Macedo on the restart as Chase Randall was up on the wheel running fourth. Randall was all over Macedo for position with Carson holding his own. Randall attempted a slide job in turn four with Macedo turning back under him to hold the position. It was high speed action at its best! Good clean racing – California bullring style!
Carson kept the Albaugh – Your Alternative #41 in fourth and began to race down Abreu to set up a battle for third. On lap 18, Abreu got up over the building cushion coming off turn four allowing an opening for Carson to race through as he regained the third spot. At the halfway point of the race, lap 20, Kofoid was now all over McFadden and hungry for the lead. The two teammates had been battling for quite a few laps and Kofoid finally was able to working his way by and was now in the point position.
On lap 25, with the leaders navigating through lap traffic, Carson was able to close in on the two Roth Motorsports cars to enter the picture at the front of the pack. Day had raced his way back into fourth and was part of the developing story too. Day was riding the high line and making it work as he was in an all-out tussle with Macedo for the show position. Macedo maintained his speed and held the spot with Kofoid still out in front of McFadden.
Carson was wheeling the Border International/Xtreme Body & Paint/ISC Racers Tape #41 Maxim and was quickly closing the gap on second running James McFadden. The race for position was about to heat up and with 5 laps to go Carson motored his way into the runner-up position. Kofoid had checked out and was way out front. That did not deter Macedo from racing hard trying to close the distance between himself and the leader throughout the remaining laps. Michael “Buddy” Kofoid though would race under the checkers first with Carson crossing the finish line 2.568 seconds behind with James McFadden completing the podium. Justin Sanders finished fourth with Corey Day rounding out the top five.
After climbing out of the cockpit, the Lemoore, California athlete and racer flashed his smile and thanked Philip (Dietz), Clyde (Knipp), and Nate (Repetz) for making all the right adjustments to give him a fast hotrod. Please with his runner-up finish, Carson reflected on his race and explained, “I felt like the restarts kind of went my way. When I started on the top, I was able to get off the corner nice.” He continued, “Even when I started on the bottom, I could get through one and two nice on the bottom and get down the backstretch and slide guys in three and four.” He used that strategy to drive to the JJR #41 team’s 17th podium in World of Outlaws competition this season. Another great run for Carson Macedo and the forty-one!
A Runner-Up Finish in the 49er Gold Rush Classic at Placerville Speedway Concludes the 2023 West Coast Swing! Photo Credit: World of Outlaws
Albaugh, LLC; Border International; Mesilla Valley Transportation (MVT); Saich Family; Tarlton and Son Inc.; Boltz Family; Complete Parts & Equipment Solutions; Durst Inc.; Liquid Trucking; Bandy & Associates Accountancy Corporation; Buckwalter Trucking, LLC; Jansen Transportation; Larry Davis Farms; Meyers Constructors Inc.; Mr. Jim’s Racing; RaceDiecast.com; Sam I Am; Team Jack Foundation; Mark Burch Motorsports; T-FAB Custom Metal Fabrication; Tiger Towing; All Pro Aluminum Cylinder Heads; AutoMeter; Bell Helmets; BMRS (Brown & Miller Racing Solutions); BR Motorsports; C&R Racing; Crow Enterprizes; Engler Machine & Tool, Inc.; Factory Kahne (FK Shocks); Fibreworks Composites; FK Rod Ends; Greber Racing Components; High Performance Lubricants, LLC; Hoosier Racing Tire; Indy Performance Composites (IPC); ISC Racers Tape; K1 Race Gear; Kistler Racing Engines; KSE Racing Products; Maxim Racing; Motor State Distributing; Premium Coach Group; Pro Powder Coating (PPC); Saldana Racing Products; Schoenfeld Headers; Smith Titanium; Vortex Racing Products; Walker Performance Filtration; Weld Racing; Wilwood Racing; Winters Performance Products; and, Xtreme Body and Paint.
To stay connected with Jason Johnson Racing (JJR), go to www.jasonjohnsonracing.com.
To stay up-to-date with Carson Macedo and his success journey on and off the track, as well as to purchase his gear and merchandise directly, visit www.carsonmacedoracing.com.