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Championship Battles Heating Up At Antioch Speedway
Antioch, CA...When All Star Series racing returns to Antioch Speedway this Saturday night, the Winged Sprint Cars will be on the roster. There will also be some close battles on the track as the point races heat up. Joining the Winged Sprints will be the Wingless Spec Sprints, Limited Late Models, B Modifieds, Hobby Stocks and Dwarf Cars. It all adds up to a night of racing that you won't want to miss.
The Winged 360 Sprint Car point race is at the midway mark of their 11 race season this week, and the battle is far from over. Marissa Polizzi is the point leader now by 26 points over Aaron Miller and 30 in front of Burt Foland Jr. Polizzi only has one non Top 4 finish in five starts. However, open wheel veteran Foland is climbing the ladder fast. Burt earned his second runnerup finish in the most recent race and also has two thirds. It's likely that he'd be leading the standings now if not for missing a race. Miller comes all the way from Grants Pass, Oregon in his bid for a track championship. However, he hasn't had a Top 5 finish since the season opener.
Art McCarthy is also making up for a bad night. Mechanical issues kept Art out of the season opening Main Event, and he's only had two fifth place finishes in his four starts. Because of that, the 2007 champion and two time Antioch runnerup is 23 points behind Foland. McCarthy has been driving these open wheel race cars for decades and is a two time Petaluma champion. He's won five times at Antioch in the past three seasons, so a win for him this week would not be a surprise. McCarthy is six points ahead of Jenna Frazier and 11 ahead of two time winner Kyle Offill. Having won twice, the rookie Offill has started racing bigger events in an effort to challenge himself more.
The lure of a nice payday has led to surprise visitors coming to Antioch from week to week. Three time Marysville champion Colby Wiesz, Dustin Golobic and Tyler Seavey are feature winners at Antioch this season. Newcomer Jacob Tuttle had everybody taking notice when the Cage Kart graduate finished second in his very first start. Young drivers up from the Micro Sprints and the Karts see Antioch as an opportunity to get valuable seat time and race for a win, but champions like Shawn Arriaga, Herman Klein and Brent Dothage have been known to stop by from time to time. The Winged 360 Sprint Cars put on a good show whenever they are booked.
The same can be said for the Wingless Spec Sprints. Now in their 19th season at the track, the Spec Sprints are in the midst of a close championship battle. Alan Miranda is knocking on ther door to his first victory, and he may just need that to hold onto his lead. It's not a big surprise to see him leading the standings after six races. So far, he has two career best seconds, a third and two fifths. The night he missed the Top 5, he was leading the race before having to pit. Miranda now leads division mainstay Rick Panfili by 24 points, but the battle for second just got crowded. Panfili leads two time winner and 2014 Watsonville champion Bryan Grier by four points. Ten points back is rookie Robert Floyd.
Winning a Main Event is the ultimate goal on race night. Sometimes we take it for granted when we watch a driver win often. Darrell Hanestad, for instance, won over 30 Spec Sprint features. Jim Perry Jr. won over 40 of them. A driver can race for many years and not get a win. Or, it can come 14 years into their career as it did when Len Mello won his first Sportsman feature. Floyd had the pits buzzing a few weeks ago with his surprise victory. It's his first season in this class and he got a win. Panfili has been racing in this class since it started in 1999. He's won heat races, led Main Event laps and finished as high as second, but he's still looking for his first win. Wins are not a given. You earn them. You can bet that when Rick finally earns his, there will be a pit full of people happy for him. He's been a supporter of this type of racing since his days in the NCMA.
Bob Newberry has won on every level in which he's competed. He also went through a period of a few seasons before he got his big break in a good ride. He's certainly made the most of it in the years that followed. Newberry had to start in the back last week following his second feature win of the season at the previous race. He charged to a second place finish behind Grier. He's missed some races and is 76 points out of the lead, but we'll have to see how the next two or three races go before he can be declared out of title chase. 26 points ahead of Newberry in fifth is Shannon Newton. Newton had his second straight Top 5 finish last week and is another driver to watch in the point battle. Other drivers who could be there this week include James East, Brandon Burd, Roy Fisher, Abigail Gonderman and Peter Carlotto.
One of the closest battles at the track is happening in the Limited Late Models. The Sun Drop Racing Team has captured five of the last six championships with Larry Damitz behind the wheel. In recent seasons, Larry had taken three time Hobby Stock champion Kimo Oreta under his wing and mentored him as he moved up to Limited Late Models. Oreta won "Rookie Of The Year" honors last year and finished second in points on the strength of his win in the season finale. The team wanted to see that familiar #15 car back at the track this year, but they also wanted to race for wins. Kimo was selected as their driver and somebody whom Damitz would certainly have approved. In five starts, he's won two times and finished second twice. Oreta's most recent second place finish behind Petaluma champion Matt While gained him a six point lead over Mark Garner.
Garner would like nothing better than to give his family a track championship at his home track. His father Jerry was the 1969 NASCAR Stock Car State champion, and Mark won the Merced championship in 2015. He wants Antioch. Mark has a win and two seconds and has finished no worse than fourth. The pressure to finish is on all of the leaders. Garner won five times last season, but his DNF's cost him not only the championship, but second place as well. Only six points behind him is 2013 champion Jim Freethy. Freethy is hungry for his first win and is actually the most consistent of the group. Jim has one second and four thirds. You also can't count out two time champion Mike Gustafson, who is on the Top 10 win list of all time Antioch winners. Gustafson is 26 points behind Oreta and still in the battle.
One of the things that makes the point battle more competitive is the slight increase in car count this division has seen this year. The steady John Evans is still out there holding down fifth in the standings. You also have past champion Lori Brown and Jeff Kendrick in the field. Kendrick now has three Top 5 finishes in the former Jeff Silva championship car. Chad Hammer and Buddy Kniss have also joined the division this year. Both are still getting comfortable in their cars, and you can bet good finishes are coming. For Kniss, who was "Rookie Of The Year" and Top 3 in Dwarf Cars last season, he's had to deal with mechanical issues taking him out of the action. He'll be out to turn his luck around when racing resumes this week.
The B Modifieds also have a close championship battle. Following his fourth feature win of the season, reigning champion Trevor Clymens is still six points out of the lead. This is because the consistent K.C. Keller has eight Top 5 finishes in eight starts. Keller has four second place finishes to go with one win and two thirds. Last week, K.C. spun early in the race and came back through the pack. A late restart enabled him to collect his fourth runnerup finish of the season. These two drivers are having a great battle, and this one may go down to the final race if this keeps up.
Back in third is Chuck Golden, but his lead over Mark Garer is just six points. It wasn't a great night last week for Golden, who has finished second and has three other Top 5 finishes this season. The door was open for Garner to move into third. After his impressive win a week earlier, Garner was running third when he spun late and ended up sixth. The spin basically prevented him from taking over third in this close battle. Randy Brown had a medical emergency and was forced to miss the most recent race, dropping him further behind the third place battle. In fact, Brown may have his hands full holding onto fifth.
Todd Gomez is 42 points behind Brown, while Doff Cooksey is 52 points behind. Gomez has looked impressive this year as the past Street Stock champion has two wins. With a big race up north, Todd may elect to race there this week as he enjoys racing against other competition and supporting his home track when he can. Cooksey, meanwhile, is adapting well to dirt track racing. He's coming off of three straight Top 5 finishes, including an Antioch best second place finish. He would have to be considered a threat to win this week as well. Other drivers to watch for this week include Kevin Brown, Megan Ponciano, Mike Mates and Tim Hammett.
The Hobby Stock race should have been broken wide open last week. Chris Long blew a motor at the previous race, and he was not ready last week. Rookie Brent Curran, who just became a father to his newborn son Bentley, had a second place finish last week. Unfortunately, he and apparent winner Michael Cooper were both disqualified in post race tech. As a result, two time feature winner Curran still leads three time winner Long by just 23 points. Will Long be ready with another motor this week? It's not often you get another opportunity like this. What's interesting is Chris Bennett has sneaked up on Long. He trails him by nine points.
Last Saturday was a night that Bennett would rather forget. He was having mechanical issues on the back stretch and his car died entering Turn 3 as the leaders came by for the last lap. Chris was beating himself up over the fact that he probably should have pitted into the infield. Everybody made it by, though Ken Rhodes lost a third place finish to Jordan Swank. For Swank, it was his best finish of the season. Bennett can't get too comfortable in third. He is just 15 points ahead of two time winner Chris Sorensen, who was scored fifth last week. Cameron Swank is just 23 points back. With three second place finishes this season, C. Swank is hoping to finally get his first win.
Two time Super Hobby Stock champion Gene Haney was enjoying a good run in third last week. He had all the pressure he could handle from two time Hobby Stock champion Melissa Myers, who won the previous week. Haney crossed the line in third, but he was elevated to first after the disqualification of the original Top 2 finishers in tech. Haney will be out to take the checkered flag first this week, and other drivers to watch for include Billy Garner, Ricky Foster, Lindsey Buirch, Frank Furtado and Robert Niven.
When it comes to the Dwarf car teams out there, you'd be hard pressed to find a better team than Three Nutz Racing. Father David Teves and son Adam Teves are a threat to win whenever they show up. Recently, Adam Teves won a race at Petaluma, and he has two wins at Antioch this season. David finally debuted his new car, and he won his second Antioch race of the year last week. Fortunately for the competition, these two are not in the championship battle. As it is, Mike Corsaro is having a season similar to the one that Kevin Miraglio had last year when he beat Corsaro for the championship. Mike has two wins, three seconds and two thirds, and this gives him a 55 point lead over second place.
If Corsaro missed this race, David Michael Rosa or his father David Rosa, who are tied for second, would have to win their heat race and the Main Event to gain a one point lead. Corsaro knows enough after his rollover about a month ago to know that he can't relax just yet. This is especially true with David Rosa chasing him. The elder Rosa has won over 50 Main Events at Antioch, mostly in the Street Stock division where he won his two championships. David finally got his first Dwarf Car feature win last year, but David Michael is still searching for his. With a pair of second place finishes, David Michael is poised to get his first win, and it could happen this week.
Two points behind the father-son duo are the oldest and youngest drivers in the field. Approaching 80 years old, Charlie Correia and 16 year old Devan Kammermann are tied for fourth. Kammermann just made the move up from Quarter-Midgets this season, and he's done a great job with four Top 5 finishes. Devan leads all rookies. Correia has been racing Dwarf Cars for over 20 years and was one of the first drivers to get on board with the class. He owns multiple race cars. Other drivers to watch for this week include Chris Becker, Chuck Conover, David Corsaro, Brandon Anderson and Brian Gray.
Saturday night's program should be a good one with great racing to be had in all six divisions. We end July with the championship battles heating up. For further information, go to www.antiochspeedway.com.
Racing Continues At Orland Raceway Saturday Night
Orland, CA...Since the 1990's, Orland Raceway has has been running three divisions that have continued to be a part of the weekly lineup. They are Pure Stocks, Mini Stocks and Mini Trucks. Wingless Sprints were added about 15 years ago, and the Micro Sprints in 2013. These divisions will all be featured this Saturday night when racing returns to the fast one-fifth mile dirt oval.
We've made it halfway through the season, and Jeremy Langenderfer has to be happy with the results so far. He's won five of the first six Pure Stock Main Events. Jeremy is starting to pull away in the points, but his wins lately have not been easy. Two races ago, Langenderfer spun early in the race and had to come from the back for the win. Last time out, he had to hold off a serious challenge from Shannon Collins. Langenderfer now leads by 69 points over reigning champion Steve Martin. Martin had a third place finish in the recent race as he clings to an 11 point lead over Collins in the battle for second. Keith Ross missed the latest race making repairs and fell 17 points behind Martin as a result. John Camper and Cody Bundy have both looked good lately, and they should be there this week along with Amanda Koop.
Mini Stock point leader Tom Davis just went to Susanville again last Sunday and earned another win there. He's been shut out of the last two races in Orland by the flying Donovan Chilton. The best Davis could do last time was third behind his closest point rival, Sean Perry. Davis in clinging to a 13 point lead in the closest battle at the track. Reigning champion John Kirkpatrick is 18 points behind Perry following his fourth place finish at the most recent race. Chilton isn't in the point battle, and he's only been at the last two races. He picked up right where he left last year when he won the season finale. The Ford Pinto of Jason Libbee, the steady Barbara Crane and Steve Speers are other drivers to watch for this week.
The Mini Truck winner's circle is an exclusive club. Point leader Keith Ross is the only member with six wins this season. Ross won the most recent race ahead of reigning champion Dan Webster and Olin Crane. Crane was still reeling from the one that got away. Two races ago, Olin led 17 laps before losing the lead on a restart. He's poised to snap the Ross winning streak this week. Webster is 25 points behind Ross, but he leads William Fogle by 27 points in the battle for second. 2013 champion Ross Vige and Zach Baker are other drivers to watch for this week.
Apparently, beating 250 Micro Sprint point leader Jackie Whitson Jr. is easier said than done. Like Ross, Whitson has won all six features in his division. It appears as if his closest threat is multi time NCMA Sprint Car champion Scott Holloway, who has three second place finishes so far. Holloway has been active on social media in an effort to get more cars to the track. For his part, Whitson is enjoying all of the good comptition. Jamie Barnes is the closest threat to the Whitson lead, but he's 48 points back. The steady Ronnie Heyer is five points ahead of past champion Jess Garland in the battle for second, and Holloway is making up for a late start as he's moved into fifth. Dave McKinnon, Mini Stock graduate Seth Libbee and Greg Prather are other drivers to watch for this week.
The 250 Micros have been running wingless, but they will put the wings back on this week. The 600 Micros are also running winged. They are hoping for a few more cars this week. Tony Alosi, Maril Michelet, Rowdy McClennon and Tyler Rockwell are other drivers to watch for as well as the eagerly anticipated return of reigning champion Jeromie Crismon. The Wingless Gas Sprints round out the program. They are still rebuilding the division following no dates last season, and drivers anticipated this week include multi time champion Josh Jacobo, David Johnson, John Irwin, Gregory Gebhardt and Josh Tucker.
It should be a great night of racing in Orland. Gates open at 5 PM with the first race starting at 7. General Admission is $8.00, Seniors and Juniors (7-12) are $5.00 and children 6 and under are free. For further information, go to www.orlandraceway.org.
Tidal Wave 50 Coming To Coos Bay Speedway
This Saturday Night
Coos Bay, Oregon...Saturday nght at Coos Bay Speedway is one of the biggest nights of the year for the NASCAR Whelen All American Series Super Late Model division. It's the $3,000 to win Les Swafford Memorial Tidal Wave 50. Thanks to additional sponsorship, the "to start" money was bumped from $200 to $225. This may be the biggest paying dirt Late Model event of the year in Oregon and is certainly one of the biggest. Joining the Super Late Models on the card will be the Sportsman Late Models, Street Stocks, Mini Outlaws and Hornets.
The increased Super Late Model purse should see the car count swell at least into the teens, and this is also a NASCAR point race. What that means is there is potential for a shakeup at the top of the point ladder. Mike George has been leading most of the season. After his seventh win of the season last week, his lead over 2015 champion Toby McIntyre is now 26 points. McIntyre managed a second place finish last week. If one of these drivers doesn't finish this week, the other could gain lots of ground. The question is who might come for the money? Trent Elliott won earlier this season and is likely to appear for this race. Reigning Coos Bay champion Nathan Augustine is another possibility. Reigning Medford champion Bob Dees, who won the feature at his home track last week, could also appear.
The fact is, promoter Drake Nelson booked this night specifically so as not to conflict with race date at any of the other tracks that feature Late Models in Oregon. They are all dark. This means the drivers are free to come run for the money. The NASCAR licesnse may be a sticking point, but the track is offering a temporary $50 one night licesnse in addition to the $50 car and driver entry fee. When you think about it, that's $100, and that's a standard entry for a race of this stature. You get at least $225 just for taking the green. It's likely that other out of town stars will come to make a run for the money, and they should be met by track regulars Chris Ray, 2014 champion Trina Post, Thor Kristensen, either Tom Parry or Brody Montgomery in the #33t car, Brian Tenney and others.
Brody Montgomery has won 11 Main Events in 14 starts as he leads the way in the Sportsman Late Model point race. Surprisingly enough, two time reigning champion Wayne Butler is still shown as only 20 points behind him. Butler has two wins and he finishes second behind Montgomery most of the time, but he was fourth last week. While this one is far from over, you get a sense that Brody is having a special kind of season. Deven Brown stepped up to challenge Montgomery last week as the driver chasing him across the finish line in second. That would have been his best finish of the season, but he was disqualified in post race tech to hand that finish to Dyllan Siewell. Stacy Robinson, Jeff Krossaman and Charlie Withers are others to watch for this week.
Justin Krossman pretty much has the Street Stock championship in hand as long as he doesn't doing anything foolish. That means that the drivers are competing for Main Event glory at this point. Last week, third ranked Jeff Thurman won his second Main Event of the season. He is one of four different winners so far this season. Steve Dubisar is beating Krossman on the winner's list, 6-5. These hard chargers should be there this week along with second ranked Ken Fox, who is still looking for his first win in this division, Josh Bearden and Dustin Hitner.
Sam Talon continues to roll right along on a pace that would win him the Mini Outlaws championship. The 2015 champion won his fifth Main Event and the Trophy Dash last week to maintain a huge lead of well over 100 points ahead of Dan Daniels. Five time winner Rob Lauver has been missing since he blew a motor in his VW Beetle in Cottage Grove about a month ago. He could return at any time. When he does, he'll have to contend with other Main Event winnners such as Jason Kallam, Ken Fox and John Henry. About the only point battle right now is the one for fourth. Lauver still has an eight point lead over Fox and a 24 point advantage over Alyssa Johnson.
Ryan Siewell is well on his way to the Hornets championship after his tenth feature win last week. The battle right now is for second as Siewell is 84 points ahead of Sam Taylor. Taylor is 16 points ahead of reigning champion Jeremiah Reiber and 18 points in front of Hannah Robison. While Reiber has two wins this season, Taylor and Robison are both looking for their first wins. Taylor finished third last week behind Reiber, while a DNF dropped Robison from third to fourth in the standings. The Hornets division continues to be the biggest class at the track, and other stars to watch for this week include two time winner Tom Williams, Jeremy Beard, April Warmack, Patrick Nagel, Tim Young, Matt Butler and Braden Fugate.
The Tidal Wave 50 for the Super Late Models should be a great race, and the other divisions continue to offer up their brand of excitement for the fans. For further information, go to www.coosbayspeedway.us.
All Star Series Sprint Cars Back For Round #6
Saturday Night At Antioch Speedway
Antioch, CA...The All Star Series Winged 360 Sprint Cars return to Antioch Speedway this Saturday night for their sixth event of the season. So far, there are four different winners. Tyler Seavey, Kyle Offill, Dustin Golibic and Colby Wiesz are the winners to date, and Offill is the only two time winner. Wiesz is a three time Marysville Raceway champion, and he won the most recent race on June 17th.
Wiesz and Jake Haulot both won their eight lap heat races that night to set the stage for the 20 lap Main Event. Wiesz sprinted out to the lead at the start, but Haulot ran strong in second ahead of Burt Foland Jr. Despite a late yellow flag for Emily Williams, it looked like this would be the Top 3. However, that changed on the last lap. As Wiesz brought it home to a satisfying victory, Haulot fell off the pace. Foland put himself back into the championship battle with his second place finish. He didn't gain too much as point leader Marissa Polizzi had a third place finish. Polizzi now leads Aaron Miller by 26 points and Foland by 30 points.
Marysville racer Adam Brenton drove a good race and took the checkered lag in fourth as Haulot ended up fifth. Steve Jaquith held off Miller for the sixth place finish. Miller rebounded from an early yellow to earn that seventh place finish in the 15 car field. Outlaw Kart graduate Jesse Colwell, three time Sprint Car champion Art McCarthy and Jason Paniagua rounded out the Top 10.
The Winged Sprint Car program at Antioch continues to see different visiting drivers come to town for a shot at the $1,200 payday each race. 2016 "Rookie Of The Year" Jenna Frazier is hoping to rebound from two bad races, and other drivers who could show up this week include Jacob Tuttle, David Dias and Brent Dothage. Really, you never know who will show up as there are often surprise visitors in the field. This leads to the good battles and late race passes for the lead that we've seen on multiple occasions this season. Saturday night should be another good show. For further information, go to www.antiochspeedway.com.
All Star Series Winged 360 Sprint Cars
Marissa Polizzi 224
Aaron Miller 198
Burt Foland Jr. 194
Art McCarthy 171
Jenna Frazier 165
Kyle Offill 150
Jason Paniagua 142
Steve Jaquith 96
Jacob Tuttle 82
Emily Williams 72
All Star Series Winged 360 Sprint Car Schedule
Recent Feature Winners
June 24, 2017: Colby Wiesz
June 17, 2017: Jonathan Allard
June 10, 2017: Dustin Golobic
May 13, 2017: Kyle Offill
May 6, 2017: Tyler Seavey
April 22, 2017: Kyle Offill
April 1, 2017: Cory Eliason
September 31, 2016: Billy Aton
September 17, 2016: Colby Johnson
September 10, 2016: Matt Barber
August 27, 2016; Billy Aton
August 20, 2016: Riley Matson
August 13, 2016: Art McCarthy
August 6, 2016: Seth Nunes
July 30, 2016: Art McCarthy
July 16, 2016: Brayden McMahan
June 25, 2016: Kaleb Montgomery
June 18, 2016: Bobby McMahan
June 4, 2016: Shawn Conde
May 21, 2016: Koen Shaw
April 23, 2016: Billy Aton
April 2, 2016: Art McCarthy
August 29, 2015: Art McCarthy
August 8, 2015: Shawn Arriaga
July 11, 2015: Jake Haulot
June 20, 2915: Austin Liggett
June 6, 2015: Shawn Arriaga
May 16, 2015: Jake Haulot
April 25, 2015: Alissa Geving
March 7, 2015: Art McCarthy
Kasper Scores Hayfork Speedway Victory
Hayfork, CA...July 22...Young William Kasper won another Hobby Stock Main Event Saturday night at Hayfork Speedway. The third generation racer bested an eight car field. Mike Ruth took the wheel of the #222 car and had an impressive showing. After winning the four lap Trophy Dash, Ruth held off Russ "The Newmanator" Newman for a second place feature finish.
Andy Blackburn won the four lap Mini Stock Trophy Dash and then won the Main Event. Blackburn, who is battling for the championship, held off 2015 champion Jack Turner and 2015 Enduro champion William Young for his feature victory. In the wild Enduro race, about a half dozen competitors ran the race on the soaked race track. Tim Kasper won ahead of Tim Young and Jack Turner. Timmy Tremayne was the winner of the Quad Main Event once again.
Next on the schedule is the Sixth Annual Clyde Cordell Memorial. The race is happening during the Trinity County Fair and is the biggest event of the season. Hobby Stocks, Mini Stocks, Enduros, Pro Stocks and Quads are all schedule, and there's a bonus being offered. Any of the car classes that can produce a ten car field will see a payout of $500 to win, $300 for second and $200 for third. If ten quads compete, there will be a $500 purse split between the Top 3 finishers there. For further information, you can check out the Facebook Page at https://www.facebook.com/Hayfork-Speedway-105283739564954/.