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BAKERSFIELD, CALIFORNIA (July 24, 2012) – Derek Thorn extended his 2012 SPEARS SRL Southwest Tour points lead by winning his eighth career series event in the 125 lap contest at Rocky Mountain Raceway in Salt Lake City, UT on Saturday night. Thorn won aboard his #43 Four Star Fruit / Hronis Racing Ford after starting in the ninth position on the fast-paced 3/8ths mile bullring.
The win gives Thorn three victories in the six races held so far this year and came from his deepest starting position yet. Thorn now leads the SRL standings by 29 points over series veteran Jim Pettit II and still sits at the top of the national Sunoco Driven Challenge points as well.
Thorn opened up the day with a fourth place qualifying run at 14.798 seconds and would start ninth after the SRL invert. It didn't take long for the Byron Campbell Motorsports, Mike Keen-prepared Ford to rocket into the lead, with Thorn taking the top spot on lap 11. Thorn did not look back putting on an impressive performance to his growing fan base with family and friends on hand.
On each successive restart, Thorn held off challenges from Pettit by getting a great drive off the corners. Thorn again drove away from Pettit on a late restart to take the dominating victory with 114 laps led around the speedway.
We unloaded on Friday and were really happy with the car," Thorn said. "Mike Keen made some great changes to make the car just that much better and it showed in the race. I'm really excited for everyone involved for this Campbell Motorsports Team. Byron and Carol Campbell, the crew and all of our great sponsors have put a lot of work into this season in the SRL and I'm glad it's working out so well!"
The weekend was also a success for Thorn as his team members Vicki and Jennifer won the Berkley fishing tournament on Friday morning with Chris and Blake finishing second.
Thorn's stout SRL career includes eight wins and 14 fast-times in just 27 starts. He also holds current SRL track records on a variety of speedways including at Madera Speedway, Orange Show Speedway, Rocky Mountain Raceway, and Irwindale Speedway proving that his adaptability and qualifying skills are a force to be reckoned with.
The Lakeport, CA native will now climb back into his Bob Bruncati-owned Sunrise Ford #6 for the NASCAR K&N Pro Series, West "NAPA 150" at Colorado National Speedway. Thorn is on a recent hot streak after finishing second at the road course in Sonoma, CA and third at Evergreen Speedway in Washington and is looking for his second win of the season. The strong runs have Thorn sitting fourth in the points trailing current point leader Dylan Kwasniewski by just 34 points.
Colorado National Speedway is a 4/10s mile oval track that will be all-new to Thorn but he is looking forward to making the most of the 10th race in the 15 race 2012 NASCAR K&N Pro Series, West schedule. With the season entering the final stretch, a strong performance at Colorado would keep Thorn in the championship equation.
2012 has been Thorn's first full-season in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series and he has risen to the occasion with a win, six top-fives, and seven top-tens in nine starts.
"Colorado is going to be a great race for our Sunrise Ford group," Thorn said. "Bill Sedgwick has really been pushing to find more speed and it's really paying off. We've put together a string of great finishes and Colorado is shaping up to be no exception. Like many of the tracks we've been to this year I've never run there before, but the team does a great job of preparing the cars which allows me to focus solely on learning the track."
Racing action this weekend gets underway on Saturday afternoon with practices at 12 p.m. and 1:15 p.m. Qualifying is slated for 5 p.m. with the NAPA 150 going green at 8 p.m. Race fans can follow the action on NASCARHomeTracks.com Lap-by-Lap and also follow Thorn all weekend on his Twitter page @DerekThorn6
Race fans can also learn more about Derek Thorn on his official website at www.derekthorn.com
Derek Thorn would like to thank the following sponsors for their support in 2012: Sunrise Ford, Four Star Fruit, Hronis Racing, Lucas Oil, Eibach Springs, Joe’s Racing Products, Oakley, Double Eagle Transportation, Victory Circle Chassis, PepperJack Kennels, and Blakesley Sports Media.