by Ben Schneider
LASTCAR.info Guest Contributor
Paul Pedroncelli finished last for the 7th time in his ARCA Menards Series West career in Saturday’s Salute to the Oil Industry NAPA Auto Parts 150 at Kern County Raceway Park when his #31 Pedroncelli Racing Chevrolet fell out with vibration issues after completing 2 of 150 laps.
The finish was Pedroncelli’s seventh in his last nine series starts dating back to last season.
The "start-and-park" procedure has become routine for Pedroncelli, who has completed a total of just five laps in the first three races of the season. The effort continues to help fund his son, P.J., who took pole position for the second time in his career, leading the most laps in the race before fading to a fifth-place finish.
However, the senior Pedroncelli’s LASTCAR dominance may see a brief interruption during the upcoming ARCA West schedule. The West Series’ next two races are the road courses at Portland and Sonoma, tracks where he went the distance and ran the full race in 2021. Pedroncelli finished on the lead lap in both races, running 13th of 22 cars at Sonoma last season before posting a career-best result of ninth at Portland.
Following Pedroncelli up last week's running order was Joey Iest, who retired with an engine failure roughly two-thirds of the way through the event. Tripp Gaylord then pulled off the track with brake issues after completing 123 laps. Andrew Tuttle and Kyle Keller rounded out the Bottom Five.
Up front, Landen Lewis took control of the race on Lap 86 and never looked back, taking the win in his first career series start for car owner Bruce Cook. Series regulars Jake Drew and Cole Moore, still looking for their first career wins, followed behind Lewis in second and third. Drew currently leads the driver standings with 122 points.
THE BOTTOM FIVE
18) #31-Paul Pedroncelli / 2 laps / vibration
17) #54-Joey Iest / 103 laps / engine
16) #77-Tripp Gaylord / 123 laps / brakes
15) #39-Andrew Tuttle / 144 laps / running
14) #12-Kyle Keller / 148 laps / ignition
2022 LASTCAR ARCA MENARDS SERIES WEST MANUFACTURERS CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Chevrolet (3)
2022 LASTCAR ARCA MENARDS SERIES WEST OWNERS CHAMPIONSHIP
1st) Pedroncelli Racing (2)
2nd) Jones Racing (1)
2022 LASTCAR ARCA MENARDS SERIES WEST DRIVERS CHAMPIONSHIP