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 Posted: Friday May 25th, 2018 06:41 AM
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Sprint Cars, Modified Classes Highlight Memorial Day Weekend Show At Antioch Speedway



Antioch, CA...April 14...It's been a while since Antioch Speedway has had a Memorial Day Weekend race. Running big shows on the holiday weekends used to be a given, but trends have changed in racing so much that it presents a problem when it comes to trying to do anything special at a race track. Several tracks in California choose to go dark, and Antioch Speedway was one of them.

However, that has changed this Saturday night. Taking advantage of the fact that neighboring Petaluma Speedway is dark this week, the All Star Series Winged 360 Sprint Car division will be headlining this Saturday's show. The A Modifieds and B Modifieds will be there as well as the Hobby Stocks and Dwarf Cars.

Promoter John M Soares was careful when he booked his Winged Sprint Car schedule this year. He made an effort to not book any shows for this division when Petaluma Speedway was running and succeeded for the most part. This means that Petaluma racers who enjoy making visits to Antioch Speedway can do so without losing points at their home track. It also means the speedway should see a pretty good turnout in the popular division.

When last we left the Winged 360 Sprint Car division at the season opener, it was 2016 champion Billy Aton collecting the victory. Aton now finds himself leading the tied Matt DeMartini, Burt Foland Jr and David Lind II. Lindt, who was a feature winner at Antioch last season, calls Petaluma Speedway his home track. It was also his first career win. Antioch has been known for being the venue for several of the young up-and-coming racers to get their first wins in this division in recent years.

Division mainstay Art McCarthy is the two-time reigning champion, but his season opener ended in the pits. Art will be out to try and turn things around, and other drivers to watch for include Roy Fisher, last season's top rookie Jacob Tuttle, Tim Burcher, David Dias and probably a few racers who normally would be seen at Petaluma Speedway.

The A Modified division has seen some top-notch drivers in action this year, including past Antioch champions Kellen Chadwick and Carl Berendsen II. Both drivers are feature winners this year. In fact, two-time Petaluma Speedway and reigning Watsonville champion Nick DeCarlo opened the season with back-to-back wins. With all of that happening, people may not have noticed Bobby Motts Jr. Through consistency, Motts is 14 points ahead of DeCarlo in his bid to repeat as track champion.

Still without a win is Scott Busby. He is in pursuit of a milestone achievement. At 72 wins, one more win will give the five-time Modified champion sole possession of the all-time win record at the speedway. Two races ago, Busby won a good battle with Buddy Kniss to finish a season-high second. Busby isn't the only driver hoping for a victory. Others to watch for this week include Sean O'Gara, Raymond Lindeman, Trent Wentworth and Shawn DeForest.

The B Modifieds have another big night planned. This is the fourth Sharp Shooter Tournament Race, and there are a few drivers with their eyes on that prize as well as Main Event glory. Sitting at the top of the point list at the moment is the most recent feature winner, Trevor Clymens. Clymens is the 2016 champion and is usually in the hunt for victory if he's not winning. Behind Trevor, Brent Curran holds a six-point lead over Ryan DeForest for second. Both drivers are also in contention for top rookie honors. Curran impressed earlier this year with a Main Event win and lost a close battle with Clymens last time out.

Antioch Speedway has some fast competitors in the field, not the least of which is 2016 Hobby Stock champion Guy Ahlwardt. Guy is only eight points out of second. More importantly, he's hoping to grab his first win in this division. Other drivers to keep an eye on include Tommy Fraser, Aaron Crowell, Todd Gomez and recent Placerville winner KC Keller.

It seems as if 2010 Hobby Stock champion Chris Sorensen and Michael Cooper were playing a game of divide and conquer in the Hobby Stock division. Both drivers have won three Main Events. However, Cooper has been in a bit of a slump during the past two weeks, allowing Sorensen to build a 30 point advantage.

The Hobby Stock division has seen an increase in new competitors this season, and the question of who would be the first to win was answered last week. Top rookie John Wacht outran reigning champion Cameron Swank and Sorensen to pick up his first career victory. Wacht is now 12 points ahead of reigning champion Swank and 32 behind Cooper. Another rookie, Haley Gomez, had her best finish in fourth last time out.

As these drivers get more confident, you'll likely see some other new winners as the season goes on. Other drivers to look for this week include fifth ranked Billy Garner, Tanis Rangel, Brianna Troen, Anthony Vigna and Erik Pitschner.

Mike Corsaro is on a good pace to repeat as the Dwarf Car champion. He has won three point season Main Events as well as the Winter Classic back in January. His closest rival is teammate Charlie Correia, 42 points back. Correia, who ran Super Modifieds for years and is one of the longest running Dwarf Car drivers on the West Coast, has had back-to-back third place finishes to move into second. But really, it's about going out and having fun with his friends on Saturday night for the 80 year old competitor.

In the record books, you'll find that nobody has won more Street Stock Main Events in Antioch Speedway history than David Rosa. He's also a two-time champion. Rosa is only 16 points behind Correia and four ahead of Mario Marques in a close battle. Young gun Miranda Chappa is also in this battle, 16 points behind Rosa. The competition is getting close behind Corsaro, and he can expect a challenge from these drivers as well as others, such as Troy Stevenson, David Michael Rosa, Josh Miller, Roberto Monroy and Chris Becker.

For fans who are jonesing for their racing fix during the holiday break, Antioch Speedway is giving them what they want this Saturday night. It's a great lineup of divisions from top to bottom, and the racing should be action-packed. For further information, go to http://www.antiochspeedway.com.



Newberry, Wacht Win Antioch Speedway Fair Time Races



Antioch, CA...May 19...Bob Newberry scored the 25 lap All Star Series Wingless Spec Sprint Main Event victory Saturday night at Antioch Speedway. The track was running a special race during the annual Contra Costa County Fair. Newberry is the current point leader, and he started in the third row. The battle was between Newberry and 2015 champion Kyle Bakkie, but Newberry prevailed at the checkered flag. Bakkie held on for second, while previous winner Shannon Newton charged from 10th starting to finish third. Scott Martin and James East rounded out the Top 5. Newberry and Newton each won eight lap heat races, and Newton also won the four lap Trophy Dash.

Rookie John Wacht won the 20 lap Hobby Stock Main Event. Wacht currently ranks third in the standings, and he's been getting faster with each start. On this occasion, he started on the front row and quickly charged into the lead. Reigning champion Cameron Swank worked his way up to battle Wacht for the lead, while previous winner Chris Sorensen had to come from tenth starting. Wacht took the checkered flag in first as Swank and Sorensen settled for second and third, respectively. Haley Gomez enjoyed her best finish yet in fourth as Anthony Vigna completed the Top 5. Swank and Sorensen each won eight lap heat races, and Swank also got the win in the four lap Trophy Dash.

It's been a while since Antioch Speedway has had a Memorial Day Weekend race, but the track has a stacked show scheduled for this Saturday night. The All Star Series Winged 360 Sprint Cars make their second appearance of the season along with A Modifieds, B Modifieds, Hobby Stocks and Dwarf Cars. It will also be the fourth round of the Sharp Shooter Series for the B Modifieds. For further information, go to http://www.antiochspeedway.com.

Race Results
All Star Series
Wingless Sprints

Heat Winners (8 laps)-Bob Newberry, Shannon Newton. Trophy Dash (4 laps)-Newton. Main Event (25 laps)-Newberry, Kyle Bakkie, Shannon Newton, Scott Martin, James East, Roy Fisher, Rick Panfili, Brandon Burd, Kevin Box, McKenzie Newton.

Hobby Stocks

Heat Winners (8 laps)-Chris Sorensen, Cameron Swank. Trophy Dash (4 Laps)-Swank. Main Event (20 laps)-John Wacht, Swank, Sorensen, Haley Gomez, Anthony Vigna, Chris Asher, Philip Oreta, Michael Cooper, Josh Leach, Tanis Rangel (DNS).



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