Nick Robfogel (photo by Bill Sessa)
PETALUMA, Calif .– Nick Robfogel took command when the Green Flag was dropped and led end to end to win the 25-lap feature for the non-winged sprint cars on Saturday night at Petaluma Speedway.
In doing so, he wasted a potential Hollywood moment for former track champion Geoff Ensign.
Ensign slipped from fourth to second halfway down after slipping Shawn Arriaga and Bob Newberry out of the fourth turn, then crashed into Robfogel’s bumper as they raced towards a lead of several. car lengths in the field. In the second half of the race, Ensign was only able to chase after Robfogel, who put in impeccable laps that never gave Ensign the opening he needed to bid for the win.
For Ensign, a former winged sprint track champion and one of the most successful pilots at Petaluma over the past decade, the runner-up was 0.2 seconds away from the end of his career made for three-way cinema. eighths of a mile oval.
Ensign and his wife Shayna, the 2018 Petaluma Speedway non-winged sprint car champion, announced earlier that they were driving their last race on the track before moving their home and racing operation to Indiana.
“If you want to win a race this is the way to do it, doing 25 laps nonstop,” said an enthusiastic Robfogel.
“Since it was his last race here, I knew he would be the car to beat,” admitted Robfogel, referring to Ensign. “I knew he was there and if I was wrong he would come.”
Ensign, known as a hard loader in traffic, tried several times to dive under Robfogel at the entrance to turns three and four, but said the car was “a little tight on the corners” which slowed him down. just enough to keep him behind Robfogel and robbed him of the speed he needed to make the pass to the front right away.
Arriaga, a former track champion of winged sprint cars, kept pace with the leading duo to take the last place on the podium.
“It was a lot of fun getting the kite off the ground,” said Arriaga. “I’m a better driver without one.”
Nick Robfogel, Geoff Ensign, Shawn Arriaga, Shawn Hopkins, Bob Newberry, Shayna Ensign, Cody Fendley, Nathan Schank, Ryan Siberlin, Marcus Hardina, Ethan Lanthrey, Sparky Howard, Jack McDonald, Zach Albers.