February 27th, 2015 - The United States Modified Touring Series (USMTS) invaded El Paso Speedway Park (El Paso, Texas) on Thursday night for the opening round of the 2nd Annual Icebreaker.
Thirty entries registered for the $2,000-to-win opener, and a seventh to fifth run in his heat race earned Dereck the thirteenth starting spot on the feature grid. During the course of the 30-lap main event, Ramirez advanced ten positions to a third place finish behind race winner, Austin Arneson and Cade Dillard. Jake Gallardo and Ben Kates rounded out the top five finishers. Dereck's charged to the front earned him Hard Charger of the Race honors.
Twenty-eight Open Wheel Modifieds returned to battle in Friday night's $3,000-to-win event. A second place finish in his heat race earned Dereck a spot in the redraw, where he received the fourth starting spot for the 40-lap main event. Rodney Sanders assumed the point from the outside front-row at the drop of the green, with Fito Gallardo and Ramirez in tow. Sanders pulled away early before Gallardo reeled him in and pulled alongside on lap twelve.
Ramirez joined the dup on the next circuit as a three-car battle ensued for the top spot. The trio nearly went five-wide in lapped traffic before Sanders settled back into the lead with Ramirez and Gallardo giving chase. Racing down the backstretch on lap fifteen, Sanders slid high which allowed Ramirez to rocket past on the inside. He remained in control and kept Sanders at bay until the races only caution came out with nineteen lap complete.
On the restart the lead duo resumed their battle for the top spot, but seventeenth starting Austin Arneson was on the move. Arneson got around Sanders with six laps to go, passed Fito Gallardo with three to go and then by Ramirez underneath the flagstand with just two circuits remaining en route to the victory. Ramirez settled for the runner-up finish, coming four car-lengths shy of registering his third win of the 2015 campaign, while Sanders, Gallardo and Jesse Sobbing completed the top five.
Ramirez now leads the USMTS Gulf Coast Border Region standings. Complete results from the events and the latest series' standings are available at www.USMTS.com
February 21st, 2015 - After a successful start to the 2015 season, Dereck Ramirez resumed competition with United States Modified Touring Series (USMTS) over the weekend at Royal Purple Raceway (Baytown, Texas).
Thursday night's, $2,000-to-win opener drew a talent-laden field of fifty-three Open Wheel Modified warriors to the oval. An impressive charge from eighth to claim the win in heat race action earned Dereck a spot in the redraw for the 30-lap feature. After receiving the sixth position on the starting grid, Ramirez went on to register a ninth place finish in the final rundown.
Ramirez returned to Victory Lane on Friday night with a $3,000 triumph in the USMTS event at Royal Purple Raceway, marking his second victory of the season aboard his Cornett Racing Engines/LG21 Open Wheel Modified. Mike Spivey Photo
A stout field of fifty-five entries converged on the oval, and a fifth to second run in heat race action positioned Dereck sixth in passing points, sending him to the redraw. Ramirez drew the pole position for the 40-lap main event with Kyle Pleasant alongside.
Ramirez took the lead at the initial green flag and never looked back, fending off a late race charge from eventual runner-up, Pleasant and third place finisher, Jason Hughes to score the victory. Clyde Dunn Jr. and John Whittington rounded out the top five finishers.
Saturday night's $4,000-to-win finale at Royal Purple Raceway was nixed by rain.
Dereck is currently second in the USMTS Gulf Coast Border Region standings. Complete results from the events and the latest series' standings are available at www.USMTS.com
February 14th, 2015 - Action continued from Shady Oaks Speedway (Goliad, Texas) on Friday night, as it would prove to be a memorial outing for Dereck and the Ramirez Motorsports team. Mike Spivey Photo
In the right place at the right time, Ramirez took down the main event win for his first United States Modified Touring Series (USMTS) victory since back-to-back triumphs in the USMTS Winter Nationals at the Royal Purple Raceway (Baytown, Texas). Ramirez pocketed $3,000 for his efforts and ended a dry spell dating back to Nov. 19th, 2011.
In preliminary action, a fourth to second run in his heat race would earn Dereck a spot in the redraw where he was the recipient of the fourth starting spot for the 35-lap finale. Polesitter Zack VanderBeek jumped out front at the drop of the green flag and paced the first seventeen laps around the 1/3-mile oval before eighth-starting Johnny Scott muscled ahead to lead lap eighteen.
Scott maintained control for the next fourteen laps until a terminal failure sidelined him with just three laps remaining in the 35-lapper. Ramirez inherited the lead and held off Ryan Gustin and Jason Hughes in the closing laps en route to victory. Zack VanderBeek and Phillip Houston rounded out the top five finishers.
“It was a pretty good race track early,” said Ramirez. "You could run the bottom or the top. Then all the stuff on the bottom was blowing up to the top. You just had to be there at the end.
“I feel bad for Johnny. He had the best car. I'll take it; a win’s a win. I really didn’t have anything for him at the end," Dereck added.
Saturday's $4,000-to-win finale for the USMTS drew a field of thirty-three entries to the oval. A second place finish in heat race action earned Dereck the ninth starting spot for the 40-lap feature. Unfortunately, mechanical issues during the main event would end his night early with a disappointing 24th place finish.
Complete results from the events are available at www.USMTS.com
February 12th, 2015 - Dereck Ramirez enjoyed a strong start to his 2015 campaign on Thursday night as he charged to a top five performance at Shady Oaks Speedway (Goliad, Texas).
The United States Modified Touring Series (USMTS) season opener drew a field of thirty-two Open Wheel Modieds to the oval, all chasing the $2,000 top prize. Dereck advanced from the third starting spot to win his heat race, sending him to the redraw for the 30 lap feature. Ramirez drew the eighth starting spot for the main event and raced his way to a fourth place finish behind race winner, Steven Whiteaker Jr., Jason Hughes and Ryan Gustin. Zack VanderBeek completed the top five.
Complete results from the event are available at www.USMTS.com