MERCED, Calif. – Kyle Larson won the 30-lap open competition 360 sprint car feature at Merced Speedway on Friday night.
The Elk Grove, Calif., native was making his sprint car return in his home state and drove the familiar white Paul Silva No. 57 Finley Farms/Tarlton Motorsports-sponsored car.
Dominic Scelzi, who Larson passed at the halfway point, held on to finish second ahead of hard charger Bud Kaeding. Front row starter Cole Macedo was fourth ahead of Tanner Thorson.
Kaleb Montgomery and Macedo would bring 25 cars to the green flag to start the feature. It would be Macedo who would take the advantage on the second lap with a power move down the backstretch.
Montgomery would bring out the race’s first caution when he spun in the middle of the first and second turns. Both Scelzi and Kaeding had a close call when they went over the banking in order to avoid the parked dark black No. 3 of Montgomery.
Tucker Worth would take over second ahead of Scelzi and Thorson. Larson would take advantage of the restart to get around Thorson while Scelzi was making a move into second.
One lap after taking fourth, a fast-moving Larson advanced into the third spot behind Macedo and Scelzi. A costly bobble in the second turn cost Macedo several spots, allowing Scelzi to take the lead. At the halfway point, Larson motored around Scelzi to take the lead down the backstretch.
Once out front, Larson had no problems navigating slower traffic on the very tight and technical quarter-mile fairgrounds dirt oval. He would stretch out his lead over Scelzi while Kaeding would move up to the third spot after starting sixth.
Kyle Larson, Dominic Scelzi, Bud Kaeding, Cole Macedo, Tanner Thornson, Michael Faccinto, Tanner Carrick, Garret Williamson, Tim Kaeding, Tucker Worth, Carson Macedo, J.J. Hickle, Andy Gregg, Joey Ancona, Joel Myers Jr., Zane Blancard, Blake Carrick, Colby Copeland, Corey Day, Brendan Warmerdam, Buddy Kofoid, Trent Canales, Kaleb Montgomery.