2010 Local Tracks
STOCKTON 99 SPEEDWAY
2010 Schedule Last race:
With Mid-Season At Hand, The Chases For The Crowns Intensify
On Saturday, June 19th, the NASCAR Whelen All American Racing Series Western Late Models and Street Stocks were back in action after two weeks of leisure. Also, for the open-wheel enthusiasts in the crowd, the NCMA Sprint Cars, USAC Ford Focus Midgets and Junior Ford Focus Midgets were on hand to produce the kind of racing magic only they can produce. And, last but not least, the Enduros were back for 199 Laps of wet and wild excitement that pleasured the racing blood of the nearly 600 in attendance.
At the Mid-Way point in the Season, the Chase for the Championship in the Western Late Model Division has tightened up considerably with a mere one point separating the top two drivers and only thirty-two back to third. Tonight’s race did its best to continue that trend, but with only four cars showing, it was a tall order, indeed. Paul Dorrity (44) of Modesto started P1 on the grid with Ripon’s Michael Sandoval (17) alongside. As the green flag flew, Sandoval got the great jump to the front where he would enjoy another flag to flag victory, his second on the season. The battle for second intensified on lap 19 when Cody Hodgson (55) of Escalon made contact with Points Leader Chad Holman (9) of Manteca through one and two with Hodgson coming out on top in that one where he would remain through to the checkered flag. Holman would have to settle for third with Dorrity coming home in fourth.
There isn’t much wiggle room between first and second in the Street Stock Division. Only eleven points stand between the top two here. With half the Season behind them, and the other half through the windshield, who will be the first to show a chink in their armor? And, do we have a dark-horse capable of the miraculous? Steve Geiser (70) of Tracy inherited the pole due to the invert with Stockton’s own Richard Harper (5) flanking him to the right. However, coming around to lap 1, and due to some absolutely fantastic driving, Robert Daniel (17) of Lodi nabbed the top spot where he held tough until lap 6 when Points Leader Sammy Solari (79) of Escalon cruised by on the low side and it was “seeya later” as he pulled away to over a straightaway lead to the checkers for the winner’s share of the spoils, his sixth win on the year. Stockton’s Ben Lewis II (22) and Daniel fought hard over that number two spot with Lewis winning out in the end and Daniel settling for third. Harper slipped back to finish fourth with Livermore’s Mark Squadrito (3) racing her into the fifth spot.
The NCMA Sprints were back for their fourth appearance of the year. These open-wheel rockets make quick work of thirty laps. But that’s not to say they make quick work of the excitement, because that (excitement) always lives with you throughout the weeks to come. The #19 of Ripon’s Jim Riddell paced the field to green in this one with the #76 of Modesto’s Ed Amador at his side. The seventy-one year old Amador quickly jumped to the front as they came around to greet lap 1. Amador would show his strength for the next twenty-two laps as he held off all challenges, great and small. However, on lap 22, just as Riddell was taking the lead, Amador spun coming off turn four which brought out the first yellow of the night. On the restart, it would be all Riddell as he went the rest of the way, mostly uncontested, for his second win of the year at Stockton. Napa’s David Goodwill (3) was close all night, but had to settle for a second place run while Rob Hammond (17H), also a two-time winner at Stockton this year, came home on the podium in third. After his lap 22 mishap, Amador came back to finish a solid fourth with the #24 of David Dias making up the top five.
It is always a pleasure to have the USAC Ford Focus Midgets back circling the high-banks at the Speedway. And, if you were in attendance tonight, you quickly understood why. This one got underway with Tim Skoglund (60) of Clovis and Cody Gerhardt (40) of Madera pacing the field around to greet the green. Gerhardt moved immediately to P1 and that’s exactly where he would remain throughout this thirty lap event, going wire to wire, for the very impressive victory. Although the winner was quite evident, the race for second and back became pretty intense at times with several cars battling it out in a beautiful display of driving skills that thrilled the fans in the stands which brought them to their collective feet. Garrett Peterson (31) of West Sacramento would settle that battle by roaring under the checkers for second. Skoglund slipped a bit, but still managed a podium finish in third. Keegan Walmer, winner of the Young Guns Race and coming from deep in this field, pulled off a fabulous fourth place finish while Cody Thompson finished her up in fifth.
After watching the Focus Midgets, it’s really easy to segue into the Junior Ford Focus Midgets, and the reasons are obvious to the fans in the stands. These young drivers manage to pump adrenalin into even the most laid-back observer. Shon Gooden (42) of Brighton, CO and Brandon White (11) of Eureka got this one underway from the front row with White taking command of the green flag until lap 17 when Keegan Walmer (24) of Portland, OR and Courtney Atkinson (3) of Franklin, WI made contact coming out of four with Atkinson spinning to the inside pit-gate and bringing with her the first caution of the night. On the restart, White assumed his position out front until lap 20 when Walmer dove low coming off turn four and wrestled the lead away, where, once there, he would not be denied as he crossed below the checkers for the win. White would finish a very close second with Cody Thompson (8) of Fremont on the podium in third. Gooden fell off the pace a bit to finish fourth while Atkinson slipped back to fifth.
The name “Enduro” has become synonymous with “wet and wild” in the realm of short-track racing. These races are enjoyed by every walk of life, young and old, all across the Country. If you haven’t been, then it’s time. And tonight’s race spoke volumes to the reasons why. The #7 of Chris Lancaster and the #37 of Tony Mentzner, with the luck of the draw, got this one going from the front row with Lancaster jumping out to lead the first eleven circuits, but on lap 12, Stockton’s own Ben Lewis (028) decided it was his turn as he slid by Lancaster for the lead. Lewis held point for the next twenty-three laps until lap 36 when Lancaster returned the favor and drove back by Lewis to lay claim to that coveted real estate out front. From that point forward, up to the half-way break and beyond, Lancaster totally dominated the show as he took full control of the front row and went sliding across the finish line for the well-earned victory. Lewis would hold on to finish a distant second, but was the only other car on the lead-lap. The #95 of Larry Moniz Jr. finished on the podium in third with Enduro Greats Richard Bentz and David Papst Jr. rounding out the top five.
Next Saturday, June 26th, the NASCAR Whelen All American Racing Series continues with the Western Late Models in Twin 40's, Grand American Modifieds, Street Stocks, Bombers, and Mini Cups.
Everyone needs to mark their calendars for Saturday, July 10th, when Stockton 99 Speedway Presents Bo Bice Live In Concert with Special Guests Stone Corral and Last Stage. Gates open at 2 PM with the show starting at 6 PM. Concert goers and Race enthusiasts alike will definitely enjoy this Ground Breaking Event. Tickets will be available Wednesday, June 23rd. For more information, go to www.stockton99.com.
The New Stockton 99 Speedway is located at 4105 N. Wilson Way, ¼-mile west of Highway 99. For more information on tickets and times, please contact the Speedway Office at (209)466-9999 or visit their Website at www.stockton99.com.
The New Stockton 99 Speedway is sponsored by Jackson Rancheria Casino Hotel, California Welding Supply, Budweiser, Alamo Alarm and Lodi Hampton Inn and Suites.