CALIFORNIA (April 16, 2012)
– Lakeport's Derek Thorn drove Bob Bruncati's Sunrise Ford #6 to his
first career NASCAR K&N Pro Series, West victory on Saturday night,
winning the "Toyota/NAPA 150" at Havasu 95 Speedway in Lake Havasu,
AZ. Thorn's win came from the pole in just his eighth career series
start and in the series' debut at the quarter-mile speedway.
With the win, Thorn locked himself into a spot at the UNOH Battle at
the Beach, to be held at Daytona International Speedway during
Speedweeks in February of 2013. Thorn also jumped up to second place
in the championship point standings just three points out behind
"It's definitely nice to get that monkey off your back," Thorn
said. "It's a credit to my team I'm driving for this year and
they've given us some good equipment this year. Bob Bruncati has
given me a great opportunity."
The victory was especially satisfying as he fought off several
mid-race challenges from Dylan Kwasniewski, taking the lead for good
on lap 108. All told, Thorn led a total of 141 of the 150 laps for
The day started with Thorn taking the Pole with a 15.277 second lap
around the speedway. Thorn led the 22 car field to green and began
lapping cars by lap 19. Kwasniewski took a look at Thorn on a lap
66 restart but Thorn successfully held the top spot. A restart on
lap 75 saw the two Fords go side-by-side with Kwasniewski taking
over the lead on lap 77.
The lead for Kwasniewski was brief with Thorn taking it back on lap
82. The back-and-forth racing continued with Kwasniewski leading
lap 93, and laps 105-107, before the blue and orange Sunrise Ford
car roared back to the lead on lap 108.
Thorn then was able to work into a comfortable one second advantage
lead over the final laps to get the satisfying and hard-earned win.
"It was a lot of fun," Thorn said. "They resurfaced the track a few
weeks ago and the surface had improved a lot. There was a lot of
tire management early in the race. When you're racing side-by-side,
you're trying not to burn off the right rear. It was a very fine
balance between staying out front and not using up your stuff."
With the win, Thorn will next be heading to a road course in two
weeks at Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele, UT in the NASCAR K&N
Up next for Derek Thorn is a return to the Byron Campbell
Motorsports #43 Four Star Fruit/ Hronis Racing Ford in the SPEARS
SRL Southwest Tour. The series will be in action at Madera Speedway
in Madera, CA this Saturday night for the "Mike Roos Memorial".
Thorn sits in second place in the points standings just ten points
out and will look to better his points position at the newly repaved
Derek Thorn would like to thank the following sponsors for their
support in 2012: Sunrise Ford, Lucas Oil, Eibach Springs, Four Star
Fruit, Hronis Racing, Joe’s Racing Products, Oakley, and PepperJack
Race fans can
learn more about Derek Thorn at