Antioch, CA — We are in the middle of summer and the championship battles are heating up at Antioch Speedway. This Saturday night, management is giving the drivers a break. With four crew members, the driver gets in for free. The Wingless Spec Sprints have been added to the lineup along with the IMCA Modifieds, IMCA Stock Cars, Pacific Coast General Engineering Hobby Stocks and Delta Dwarf Cars.
It continues to be a close battle in IMCA Modified competition. After last Saturday night’s race, Nick DeCarlo holds a three point advantage over Kellen Chadwick. Both drivers are on a quest to win their second track title and are multi-time Main Event winners this season.
Bobby Motts Jr had a Top 5 run going last week before his motor expired. This dropped him 20 points out of the lead as he clings to a 12 point advantage over top rookie Terry DeCarlo Jr in the race for third. Trevor Clymens is only four points behind DeCarlo as they battle for top rookie honors.
Five-time champion Troy Foulger and his wife are expecting a baby soon, and he has elected not to seriously pursue points. However, he is just 28 points out of fifth. After winning big races in Petaluma and Medford this year, he has the Bill Bowers Memorial race in October on his radar. This is a race that pays tribute to his car owner, Billy Bowers’ father. Foulger has been fast on the circuit in both Stock Car and Modified competition with eight wins this year. In fact, he has 20 Top 5 finishes in 32 starts.
Shannon Newton entered the season just looking to do some racing. The 2019 Wingless Spec Sprint champion wasn’t necessarily pursuing points. However, his fourth win of the season last week gives him a one point advantage over James East. With Zack Neeley absent from that race, he fell to fourth in the standings, five points behind third-ranked Steve Maionchi. Tony Bernard still holds on to fifth, 16 points ahead of division original Rick Panfili. The drivers had been voicing concern this year about the amount of races scheduled, and that likely played into management’s decision to add them this week.
Looking over at the IMCA Stock Cars, it was just announced that thanks to multiple sponsors, it’s Heavy Equipment/Construction Night. This division will be competing for an increased purse, which includes $1,000 to win, $650 for second and $500 for third. It is hoped that this will bring drivers from out of town to increase the field. IMCA Stock Car racing has produced some of the most exciting, side by side racing at the track this year. The last two races have been won by Merced Speedway star Garrett Corn.
Travis Dutra continues to lead the way. The reigning division champion has five second place finishes to give him a 17 point advantage over two-time winner Jason Robles. Dutra came close to winning the last time out and is hungry for victory. In the race for third, the steady Jason Jennings leads two-time winner Fred Ryland by 11 points and Dave Hill by 15. Hill is a past Top 10 driver in Street Stocks some 20 years ago, and it’s been nearly two decades since he raced prior to coming back in IMCA Stock Cars.
Shifting gears to the Pacific Coast General Engineering Hobby Stocks, Misty Welborn holds a 36 point advantage over Michaela Taylor. These two drivers appear to be the most likely champions this year, but Taylor had to win the B Main last time out just to make it into the show. Her advantage over third-ranked Jared Baugh is 26 tallies. Rookie Taylor DeCarlo is in fourth, 36 points ahead of Jewel Crandall and 38 in front of reigning champion Larry McKinzie Jr.
The racing community is still a buzz after young Aidan Ponciano picked up his first career Hobby Stock win. Aidan is the grandson of past Hobby Stock champions Dan and Denise McCown. His mother, Megan Ponciano, is also a past Hobby Stock champion.
Now, all of those family members can say they have won Main Events in Hobby Stock competition. This may also cause some speculation as to whether Ponciano may make his first serious point run in 2023, but all eyes will be on him to see if he can repeat his Main Event success this week.
After a one-week break following the successful Dwarf Car Nationals, the Delta Dwarf Cars returned. Two-time champion Danny Wagner leads Devan Kammeramann by 58 points. WSDCA rules allow for two throwaways, meaning the standings are actually closer than it would indicate. Chance Russell is 10 points ahead of the steady Ellie Russo and 18 in front of David Rosa. Rosa’s son, David Michael Rosa, is just 10 points behind him. Russo was a feature winner last year. She has three fourth place finishes this year as she searches for her first win of the season.
Five divisions of racing means fans will see another action-packed show this weekend. The gates will open at 4:00 pm with the first race starting at 6:00 pm.
Ticket prices are $20 for Adults, $15 for Military, Seniors (60 and over) and Children (under 11) with Children 5 and under free.
For further information, go to www.antiochspeedway.com