YAKIMA, WA – On the first weekend of racing in 2016 for Justin Youngquist, he and his new team owned by Dale Melin overcame adversity and learned a lot about their program moving forward. Running with the Summer Thunder Sprint Series at Central Washington State Fair Raceway in Yakima, WA, Youngquist flipped wildly on Friday but rebounded for a ninth place finish in Saturday night’s finale.
Friday night saw Youngquist time in 13th quick and advance directly to the feature thanks to a third place run in the heat. As Justin looked to work his way forward from his 11th place starting spot on the field, disaster struck as contact with another driver caused massive damage on the bottom right frame rail of the chassis and ended his evening early with a 20th place finish.
The crew worked tirelessly to put a brand new car together on Saturday morning with Youngquist turning his attention to a better finish for the $3,000 to win finale. A tenth place effort in qualifying and second place run in his heat race gave the team confidence that they were on the right path. Youngquist noted something awry with the power plant in the 22 machine after the heat race which saw a motor swap ensue, leaving the team with minimal time to properly set up their sprint car for the rapidly changing track conditions. With 30 laps of A Main on the docket and a surface taking rubber quickly, Justin stuck with a conservative game plan for the main and rolled the car into the trailer after finishing 9th.
Photos courtesy Lisa Dynes Photography
"I feel like we learned a great deal about our car and team this weekend. I could have taken more risks on Saturday night but after rebuilding a brand new car that morning, I wanted to at least give our crew a decent result in the main without tearing up any more equipment. Dale (Melin) has given me great resources to work with and I look forward to having our team on the podium sooner rather than later,” said Justin.
Justin also wanted to thank two important supporters from the weekend. “We always stay at the Howard Johnson Hotel in Yakima and they’ve stepped up big time in helping us for our travels that way. I can’t wait to go back in the fall for the season finale knowing our trailer is parked in a secured lot and knowing I’ll get a good nights rest. It was also great to have Glen and Kim from Here2Wire there as part of the Summer Thunder Series. They’ve been instrumental to my career and it’s a pleasure getting to race when they’re in the crowd,” said Youngquist.
Next up for Justin will be Skagit Speedway’s Season Opener on Saturday, April 23rd.
Sponsors for 2016 include Here2Wire Electrical, Bubba Sudz Car Wash, Northern Collision, Dreamchasers RV of Burlington, Image360, Classic Rock 92.9 KISM, Dirty Work Ink, Feed Your Farm Hydroponic Fodder Systems, Les Schwab Tire Centers, Sky Harvest Produce, Triple X Race Components, Shark Racing Engines, Ultra Shield Race Products, Pyrotect, BLACKBEARDltd, Lisa Dynes Photography, Outback Steakhouse, Racing Hart Media.
Follow Justin Youngquist on social media by searching Justin Youngquist Racing on Facebook, @JYoungquist56 on Twitter and at www.JustinYoungquist.com.