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Demolition Derby: Two-day event ends well for locals

Demolition Derby: Two-day event ends well for locals

Jacob Casale (#7) takes a hit during the Destruction Derby I: Traditional Turmoil event at the Stanislaus County Fair on Monday.


POSTED July 15, 2014 11:06 p.m.

The mayhem of the Turlock Lions Destruction Derby at the Stanislaus County Fair began on Monday and concluded on Tuesday as many locals fared well in the two-day event at the Food Maxx Arena with thousands of spectators present to watch cars smash into each other until only one was left standing.

Monday's top dog  Dan Hicks was left out of the muddy pit in the second day of anarchy action. In the end, it was Hilmar’s Joe Lourence who was left standing with his 1964 Continental.

“It’s just the adrenaline rush once you get going, it’s unbelievable; you get all these people who start hitting each other it’s awesome,” said Lourence. “I always wanted to win the derby and take first place, always something I really wanted to do, just a matter of time and getting with it.”

After not placing in the top four in either heat in day one, Lourence was able to bounce back on day two after making some adjustments to the steering wheel and fixing a leak that was causing problems with the engine. His repairs paid off.

 “It’s a thrill to take first place on the second night, would’ve like to take it on the first night, but we had some issues overall along with the axle,” said Lourence. “We couldn’t get it replaced in time to go in the arena so I felt depressed, but after this I feel really good.”

Last year’s winner, Nathan Holt from Oakdale, also fared well once again, finishing in third place in both the first and second day finals.  

“Coming into the final heat I didn't feel like I had the best car, it’s kind of rusty and that's not good when you go out into a derby,” said Holt. "I was hoping I could get the win and repeat. It would have felt great if I could repeat because I would be the only person in my family to repeat and it’s just family bragging rights as well; it could've been cool if somebody from my family won, like my little brother even."

Day one first place winner, Hicks out of Turlock, managed to outlast and outhit all 18 cars without any penalties, taking home the $3,000 grand prize.

In the second day derby final, only 10 working cars were left over from the previous night — including Lourence and his Continental, which was in great shape and did much damage in the mud.  

“Tuesday is leftovers from guys that are still around from the previous night and some quick fixtures and repairs and they are good to run again,” said Lourence. “Some people told me I did some great work, did magic with this car. I was kind of like a shark going for bites at everyone, riding in circles hitting everyone.”

Look in Friday's Turlock Journal for all the results from day two of the Destruction Derby.

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