2010 Local Tracks
STOCKTON 99 SPEEDWAY
2010 Schedule Last race: Spurgeon And Schlundt Taking Home Top Honors
The New Stockton 99 Speedway Media Release – 4-17-2010
Media Relations – David Holman
Open-Wheel Racing Was On Tap At The Speedway As The
Grand American Modifieds
Ran Twin-50’s With Scott Winters Owning The Night
On Saturday, April 17th, the NASCAR Whelen All-American Western Late Models enjoyed a 50-Lap Main Event in front of a crowd of nearly 1,800. And, for the Open-Wheel enthusiasts in the stands, there was plenty to be excited about with the Grand American Modifieds in Twin 50's. Also on the Open-Wheel Bill for the evening were the USAC Focus Midgets, USAC Jr Focus Midgets and NCMA Sprint Cars with their first appearances of the year. If you left at the end of the night unfulfilled, then you just don’t like racing.
The racing has been extremely tight in the Western Late Model Division so far this year. And, if tonight was any indication, there are many more great races to come. Seventeen year old Michael Sandoval (17) of Ripon and Stockton’s Chad Holman (9) brought the field around to greet the green with Holman nabbing the early lead until lap 10 when Tracy’s Justin Philpott (05) worked his way below Holman to take over that much-coveted real estate out front. From that point forward, Philpott would prove too strong for anyone to mount a challenge as he gathered in his first win of the year in dominating fashion. “First of all, I would like to thank everybody for coming out today,” said the well-mannered young Philpott, “It was a fun race tonight, much better than wrecking race cars.” Danville’s Tim Spurgeon (86) had another strong performance finishing second with Michael Wendt (2) of Lodi hot on his bumper for third. Holman fell off a bit, but still managed a fourth while third-generation driver, Nic Belletto (15) of Modesto, brought home a top five.
Excitement filled the air in anticipation of the Grand American Modifieds rolling out onto the grid to get their first Twin underway. Stockton’s own Larry Tankersley (96) went off P1 on the starting grid with Manteca’s Kyle Dickerson (14) flanking him to the right. The action was short-lived when on lap 2, AJ Ryder (62) of Stockton and David Crouch (12) of Euphoria, WV, made contact coming out of two with Crouch spinning up the track and bringing with him the first yellow of the race. On the lap 3 restart, Modified Sensation, Scott Winters (24) of Tracy, made his move from the outside for the lead, which he held, unopposed to the checkers, for the win. “You know, we were fortunate there, we got right up to the front row and were able to make a move on the 96 (Tankersley),” said the eloquent Winters, “the crew chief thinks he can get the car a little bit better for the second race.” Ryder came back from his earlier altercation to finish a fantastic second as did Dash Winner Crouch for third. The Pride of Piketon Ohio, Aaron Higgins (21), came home fourth while Tankersley slipped back a bit to finish fifth.
The second Twin in the Modified Division was no less exciting than the first. These drivers just flat-out get busy. This go-round the Pride of Piketon, Ohio, Aaron Higgins (21) landed on the pole paired with Manteca’s Kyle Peterson (14) with Peterson grabbing the early lead until lap 6 when Higgins snatched it away. In the meantime, Scott Winters (24) was working his way to the front from starting shotgun on the field, until lap 17 when he dove low coming off four and assumed that very familiar position out front. From that point it was all Winters in his usual dominating style as he motored below the flagstand for his second Feature Win of the night. “We took the car in after the first race and worked on it a little bit,” said a confident Winters, “we had a little brake caliper problem but we got that fixed.” Higgins held on to finish second while AJ Ryder (62) finished third. Dickerson and Tankersley finished fourth and fifth, respectively.
It was a great sight to see the USAC Focus Midgets back in action at the Bullring. Cody Gerhardt (40) of Madera and Bobby Runyan Jr. (9) of Denair paced the field to green in this 40 Lapper with Runyan Jr. grabbing the immediate lead at the stripe where he would hold off all challengers as he sailed away to the checkers for another wire to wire victory. “I want to thank my friends and family for being here tonight,” said the ecstatic Runyan, “this is the most people I’ve had cheering for me at any race.” Garett Peterson (31) of West Sacramento worked his way into second place at the flag while Gerhardt held on for a podium finish in third. Cody Thompson (8) of Fremont and Keegan Walmer (42) of Portland, Oregon rounded out the top five.
In the USAC Jr. Focus Midgets, Brandon White (11) of Eureka and Courtney Atkinson (3), all the way from Wisconsin, lined up on the front row to get this one underway. White grabbed the holeshot going into one and would never relinquish the lead, going wire to wire, for the victory. “I just had to stay low and keep my line to keep him (Walmer) from passing me,” said the excited White. Keegan Walmer (42) of Portland, Oregon would have to settle for second while Atkinson slipped back a bit to finish third with Cody Thompson (8) of Fremont bringing her home fourth.
The NCMA Sprints always put on a great show on the high-banks of 99 Speedway. These cars are so fast and these drivers make it look so effortless, the fans in the stands couldn’t help but sit on the edge of their seats. The #17K of Gary Koster started this one from the pole position with the #7 of Patterson’s Steve Amador at his side. Amador jumped out to the early lead until lap 8 when Ray Hammond (17) of Morgan Hill dove low to make the pass coming up off four. The first yellow of the race went flying a lap later when Tracy’s David Burchett (77B) suffered mechanical woes and couldn’t make the turn into the pits. On the lap 10 restart, Hammond held his ground as the racing behind him grew more intense by the moment until lap 18 when, much to the crowd’s chagrin, the second yellow flew for a mechanical issue on the #19 of Ripon’s Jim Riddell. The flagman decided to let Riddell pit to adjust an errant shock while the field circled awaiting his return which was greeted by a standing ovation from a very pleased audience. Once things settled back into form, the green flag flew again on the lap 18 restart with Hammond picking up where he left off and riding the wave all the way to the checkers for the victor’s share of the spoils of a battle well fought. “I thought he (Riddell) was Dale Jr. back there,” said a very pleasant Hammond, “I would like to thank my mom and dad for making this possible.” After the mishap on lap 18, Riddell amazed the entire crowd with his drive back through the pack and bringing it home in second. Modesto’s Ed Amador (76), a 72 year old legendary racer, finished on the podium in third with Thomas Lieby (93) of Copperopolis and Steve Amador rounding out the top five.
Don’t forget next Saturday, April 24th, with NASCAR Whelen All American Grand American Modifieds and Street Stocks. Also on the agenda for the event will be the WSRA Baby Grands & Mini Cups, Basically-4-Cylinders, and 199-Lap Enduro.
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.
Justin Philpott of Tracy, the defending NASCAR Western Late Model division champion, won the NASCAR Western Late Model main event at Stockton 99 Speedway on Saturday.
Philpott won the 50-lap race for his first feature victory of the 2010 season. He won his first track title at Stockton 99 in 2009, when the facility reopened after a two-year hiatus.
Tim Spurgeon of Roseville was second, and he was followed by Michael Wendt of Lodi, Chad Holman of Valley Springs and Nic Belletto of Modesto.
Scott Winters of Tracy, who won the Grand American Modified crown at Stockton 99 last season, won both 50-lap GAM main events. Allen Ryder was second in the first race and Aaron Higgins was the runnerup in the second.
Other main event winners include Bobby Runyan (USAC Midgets), Brandon White (Jr. Midgets) and Rob Hammond (NCMA Sprints).