Sprint Car Insider – Driver Exclusive. HANFORD, Ca. (October 16, 2018) – Gauge Garcia continued to showcase impressive speed and earn his bid as a favorite to win in January with his California Cup performance at Lemoore Raceway.
We keep referring back to when everything began to click for Garcia and it seems to be after the night he went to Delta Speedway for the first time this season and knocked points leader Caeden Steele off his pedestal. Ever since that momentous occasion Gauge Garcia has had a whole new level of confidence and he’s displayed it week in and week out since. Last weekends Cal Cup would be no different.
Garcia did get a win early in the year at Plaza Park but he says it was after that when he learned a pivotal lesson there that things began to come together for him everywhere else too.
It was like the flip of a switch.
“When i finally learned how to rip the cushion at Plaza is where things began to click for me,” said Garcia. “That track is so tough, it’s the most technical out of all of them but when you finally learn to rail that cushion you take that with you everywhere and it makes every track way more fun.”
Ever since Garcia learned to rail the cushion at Plaza he’s been in contention to win nearly every race he’s entered. Heading into the off-season with the biggest race ahead of him his confidence is high and his recent performance spells trouble for the national competition.
But there is an old saying that says you must lose one before you win one. In Gauge’s case, lose one to keep the hunger alive and keep surging. Although he had already had plenty of close losses this year, last weekends runner up at the Cal Cup may just be the best thing for Garcia as he embarks on his journey to Tulsa.
He was the dominant force all weekend after pulling quick time, winning one of his Friday heats and pulling away with the Friday qualifier earning the pole position for Saturday’s main. Going into Saturday Garcia was the man to beat.
In Saturday’s main event he learned that another driver was gunning for him and had redemption on his mind after being defeated two weeks before. Although Caeden Steele barely edged out Garcia for the Lemoore Title, Garcia’s come from behind dominant victory weighed heavily on the champ. He wanted to prove to everyone that he earned that title.
Saturday night the champ turned the tables. Caeden Steele came in prepared with his eyes on the prize. While Garcia drove an incredible race, Steele got the job done. He was able to pass Garcia and take the win to put an exclamation point on his season.
In victory lane, Garcia was obviously upset with himself for losing. But the incredible sportsman that he is Gauge Garcia gave all the credit to Steele and admited, “He just beat me tonight. I had nothing for him,” said Garcia in victory lane.
But in his eyes the fire was apparent and Caeden Steele may have just lit the candle the entire country doesn’t want to burn.
This may be the best thing that happened to Garcia. That loss showed him that no matter how far on top you are someone always has the target on your back. Not that Garcia would ever become complacent, but now he surely won’t overlook anything heading into Tulsa.
The California Cup loss just dumped fuel on a fire that was already raging out of control. Now we wait and see how he answers the call…
Catch Gauge Garcia in action at Turkey Bowl XVIII at Delta Speedway as well as Turkey Night at Plaza in November as he prepares for a Tulsa Shootout run with nothing on his sight but bringing home a Driller.
Stay tuned here to see how the saga unfolds.
Friday, October 12, 2018
California Cup Night 1
- Qualifying: 1st
- Heat Race A: 5th
- Heat Race B: 1st
- Qualifier: 1st
Saturday, October 13, 2018
California Cup Night 2
- Main Event: 2nd
- Wins: 7
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On the Horizon for (DRIVER NAME):
Turkey Bowl XVIII
October 26-27, 2018
34th Annual Tulsa Shootout
January 1-5, 2019
Tulsa Expo Center
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