Flavin Fans Lap Up Win at Saugus Speedway
Shannon Flavin of West Hills, a man with an army of fans, stormed to his third consecutive main-event victory by taking the checkered flag in the 25-lap Hobby Stock oval main event Tuesday night before a Fourth of July crowd of 5,228 at Saugus Speedway.
Flavin, whose following consistently fills more than half a section of the front straightaway grandstands, slipped inside Larry Leis of Castaic on Lap 21 and survived two yellow flags to win.
Flavin had swept the oval and figure 8 main events on June 10, the most recent program of Hobby Stock racing at Saugus.
Upon watching their hero take the checkered flag for a division-high fifth time this season, the Flavin faithful leaped to their feet in applause.
“I guess I’m a nice guy,” Flavin said with a laugh about his popularity. “I have a big family, for one. And a lot of people from my work come out.”
Leis grabbed the lead on Lap 4, but slid sideways in Turn 2, allowing Flavin, who entered the evening fourth in the points standings, to surge ahead.
“I guess he saw me right on his (tail) and he tried to drive too hard into the turn,” Flavin said. “I got underneath him and it was all over then.”
Flavin’s streak of victories, however, was snapped in the 12-lap figure 8 main event when he pulled off the course with body damage to his car.
Brian Kelley of Arleta, who entered the evening atop the division points standings, sped through heavy traffic without incident to claim his third main-event win of the season.
Thad Friday of Reseda finished second and Roy Johnson II of San Fernando finished third.
In other races, Rick Bonifield of Palmdale won the 12-lap Jalopy main event ahead of Mad Dog Magee of Van Nuys, and Dan Spitzer of Canoga Park won the 10-lap Hobby Stock oval semi-main event to lead four drivers who advanced to the main event.
Eight-lap Hobby Stock oval heat-race winners included Spitzer, Scott Wade of Burbank and Leis.
Wade and Tom Siebuhr of Sylmar each won eight-lap Hobby Stock figure 8 heat races.
Magee won the eight-lap Jalopy heat race.
Trophy-dash winners included Joe Barreras Jr. of Canyon Country (Hobby Stock oval), Friday (Hobby Stock figure 8) and Scott Harmon of Reseda (Jalopy).