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Raio Salmon – 2018 Year in Review

Sprint Car Insider- Driver Exclusive. FRESNO, Ca. (December 16, 2018) — On many occasions over the course of the 2018 race season Raio Salmon proved to be playing chess on race track full of checkers players.

This season was undoubtedly one of the best of her career. She fought down to the wire for three championships, came just shy of taking one, and earned six victories, a career-best for her. Out of 46 main events Raio Salmon picked up 6 wins, 28 top fives, and 40 top tens. By the numbers she finished in the top ten in an astounding 86% of all the races she entered. With 28 top five finishes, she earned a 60% total on top five finishes. Raio Salmon was the hallmark of speed and consistency all year long.

It could be said that thirteen was the lucky number for her this year. That’s right, 13, Salmon wound up in the top three 13 times this year. She took the glory in 6 wins, finished in the runner up spot 4 times, and landed third another 3. But speaking to the theme of 13, her six wins in 46 races earned the total of 13% of races won. In a sport so driven by being consistent while being fast, her numbers show just how she kept herself in the thick of three title fights all year long.

It all began June 1, at Lemoore Raceway where she dominated her way to the first victory of the season. From that point forward she was on it. The next two wins came back to back as she took her show on the road and swept the Summer Sizzle at Delta. She not only dominated the first night, she had to work for it on night two. Salmon was able to withstand a furious charge before making the move and grabbing the checkered in jaw-dropping fashion. Salmon earned another win on the opening night of Lemoore Raceways Jet Bowl Classic before capturing one more at Delta, and coming back down to Lemoore to capture a big one.

Raio Salmon finally got her own State of California trophy to hang on the wall after being everyone at Lemoore Raceway in a King of California series event. Unfortunately the ball didn’t keep rolling from that point. A small issue at Delta put her in the infield and on the hook as she watched her title slip away. All year long she maintained a narrow Points advantage, but this mechanical failure would prove to be costly.

As per her patented style and grace Salmon would show up to make things interesting at the regions biggest races, on the biggest stage. Of course it would be Salmon blowing by guys on the top all year long, who didn’t see that coming? But at events such as California Speedweek, with everyone in attendance, and the best going after bears, Salmon shows up and shows them who belongs on the podium. Her Plaza Park Speedweek podium may not have been a win but it speaks volumes about the level she was competing at all season long.

She was able to do it at Plaza during the Mark Hagopian Memorial as well. On night one she came from seemingly no where to steal the final transfer spot coming to the finish line. She became one of only three drivers to qualify directly for the 50 lap show from night one. Her patience would prevail once again in the grand finale. Raio Salmon surged to second on the night in the States fastest growing, and most prestigious event, the Mark Hagopian Memorial.

No matter where the 21 showed up in 2018 she was a contender for wins. According to the team if she could just have as much confidence in herself as everyone else has in her she would run away with even more victories.

Salmon has proven to be one of the fastest shoes to come from the region as we must not forget she completed a Central Valley podium sweep of the Outlaw Class at the Tulsa Shootout just a few short years ago. As hard as everyone tries and tries to convince her to give the Shootout another shot it appears this year will not be the year. Although she would be riding a wave of momentum after her best season to date, she’s ready to tackle 2019.

If 2018 is any indication of how that might go, you can mark her on your list of championship contenders now.

Raio Salmon – 2018 Stats

Features: 46

Wins: 6

Top 5: 28

Top 10: 40

Win Percentage: 13%

Top 5 Percentage: 60%

Top 10 Percentage: 86%

2nd Place Finishes: 4

3rd Place Finishes: 3

Podium Total: 13

2nd in Delta Speedway Point Standings

2nd in Lemoore Raceway Point Standings

2nd in King of California Point Standings

Win Dates:

June 1 – Lemoore Raceway

June 15 – Delta Speedway

June 16 – Delta Speedway

July 6 – Lemoore Raceway

July 28 – Delta Speedway

September 8 – Lemoore Raceway

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On the Horizon: (hopefully)

34 Annual Tulsa Shootout

January 1-5, 2019

Tulsa Expo Center

Tulsa, Oklahoma

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JJ Cox View All

JJ Cox -
Lead Contributor of Sprint Car Insider.
Sole Proprietor of Prodigy Race Promotions.
Current Freelance Announcer with educated broadcast experience.
Media Relations Advisor.
P.R Practitioner.

Fresno State Bulldog - Broadcasting and Public Relations.
Grew up going to 50+ Sprint Car races a year and Raced Motocross for 10 years.
Die Hard Dirt Race Fan
Just a rolling stone.

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