Driver Profile

Cale Thomas

Cale Thomas

Fairland, IN Submit Info | Claim Profile

Thomas Opens Season With All Star Tripleheader

Thomas Opens Season With All Star Tripleheader

(Photo by Dean Yoder)

FREMONT, Ohio – After nearly eight months without competing in a sprint car race, Fairland, Ind. youngster Cale Thomas finally got back on track and back behind the wheel. Competing in three All Star Circuit of Champions events, the 17-year-old took part in the first-ever winged 410 event at Indiana’s Plymouth Speedway before traveling to Ohio for two nights at “The Track That Action Built,” Fremont Speedway.

Plymouth held their events on Friday night, with Thomas quick out of the chute. He hustled his Engler Machine and Tool entry around the slick quarter-mile in 14.361 seconds to round out the top five fastest laps in qualifying, with 37 cars present. As the fourth-fastest in his heat race group, he earned the pole position after the inversion. Surrendering the lead on the start to the outside polesitter, Thomas didn’t give up. He ran down his counterpart and made the pass on lap five. Australian James McFadden, who just arrived in the United States the previous night, was powering through the field from fifth, and passed Thomas with two laps left. Finishing second, Thomas still captured a spot in the dash event to line up the top ten for the feature race. Starting seventh after the redraw, he fell into a hard battle with two-time All Star champ Greg Wilson for much of the race, fighting for the eighth spot. Eventually, Thomas was relegated to tenth by the time the checkered flag emerged.

For the 35-lap nightcap, Thomas quickly discovered a throttle issue on the first circuit. What was eventually discovered to be a rock that became wedged inside the return spring caused the throttle to stick on entry of nearly every corner, affecting him throughout his toils in the race. As the driver battled that dilemma, he slowly fell backwards, and while running in 14th on lap 19, Thomas spun the J&J/Engler No. 91 to a stop in turn four. Following the spin, he took a push back to the pit area to avoid what could be an expensive mishap, accounting for 23rd place.

Heading east to Fremont, Ohio on Saturday, Thomas was the 45th and final car to get on the speedway for qualifying. The track had already slowed considerably by this time, but his Factory Kahne shocks helped him maneuver around the track in 14.687 seconds to time in 30th. Going seventh for heat race competition, Thomas knew he would have to try a different line than most, as the bottom was highly preferred. After dropping to eighth through the first turn, he moved to the high side of the track to attempt to make it work. He was able to hold the pace with his competitors, but received a slidejob on the final corner, falling to ninth.

Running the top seemed to help Thomas prepare for the B-Main; starting in 12th, he would have to pick off eight cars in order to transfer. Though unable to do so, he was able to pass around the outside when most drivers paced right along the infield tires in single file formation. Moving up three spots, Thomas finished ninth.

Night two at Fremont saw another four teams arrive for a total of 49; in qualifying, Thomas stopped the clock at 13.197 seconds, 19th quick and seventh-quick in his heat group, meaning he’d start from seventh. With several cautions in the ten-lapper, he found himself the reason for one of them. Riding the top of the speedway, he slid too high and backed his machine into the turn two wall. Surprisingly, the hard hit did no more damage than a few scratches, and he was able to push back off and rejoin the field at the tail, and wound up with an eighth-place finish.

Again to the B-Main, Thomas’ crew was late getting the car to the staging area, so he was docked one row on the starting grid, moving from seventh to ninth. While working the bottom side of the track nearing the end of the 12-lap event, Thomas made contact with an infield tire marker, bending parts in the front end and forcing him to retire his entry with two laps left. On the official scorecard, Thomas was credited with 16th.

Thomas would like to thank Engler Machine and Tool, Factory Kahne, J&J Auto Racing, Kaeding Performance, Donovan Engineering, Spike Products, Simpson Indy, Maxima Oils, Hoosier Racing Tire, Blackbeard, and Shadow Graphics, as well as all of his fans for their continued support.

Thomas is currently seeking additional sponsorship going forward. The entire side of the car is available at this time. For more information, please contact Thomas or Redbeard Promotions with any inquiries.

Thomas is next scheduled to compete on May 29 at Attica Raceway Park in Attica, Ohio in the World of Outlaws “Kistler Engines Classic” in the No. 91 410ci winged sprint entry.

Quick Results

May 22 – Plymouth, IN – 410ci Winged Sprint – Qualifying: 5; Heat: 2nd (1); Dash: 10th (7); Feature: 23rd (10)
May 23 – Fremont, OH – 410ci Winged Sprint – Qualifying: 30th; Heat: 9th (7); B-Main: 9th (12)
May 24 – Fremont, OH – 410ci Winged Sprint – Qualifying: 19th; Heat: 8th (7); B-Main: 16th (9)

2015 Stats

3 races, 1 feature, 0 wins, 0 top fives, 0 top tens, 1 DNF

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Article Credit: Redbeard Promotions

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