STACY BACK IN FORM AT STOCKTON 99
(STOCKTON, CAJuly 11, 1999)--Like a blast from the past, in step with the nights "50s Night" theme, Stockton's Steve Stacy found his way back to victory lane in Grand American Modified action at NASCAR-sanctioned Stockton 99 Speedway Saturday night breaking a spell of 14 winless events dating back to the closing event of 1998.
Twenty-one cars took the green flag with Jason Philpot of Sacramento and Robert Miller of San Jose sharing the front row duties for the 50-lap feature that paid $1,000 to win. Miller led lap number one, running to a quick, second-lap yellow as Dan Dabbs of North Highlands suffered a cut tire that boxed several of the early front runners and allowed Stacy to re-start in second. Stacy passed Miller on lap-four with fast qualifier Jason Kerby of Stockton coming to third on lap-nine with season point leader and Winston Racing Series regional point leader Mark Welch of Orangevale hot on his heels in fourth.
Scott Winters of Tracy and Kerby tangled on lap-10 with Winters heading to the infield and Kerby continuing on with heavy smoke from a rubbing rear tire. Four laps later, Welch suffered a cut tire and stopped high in turn-one to draw a yellow before ducking into the pits for a "new shoe." Kerby also took timeout to bend the sheet metal from the burning tire, with both re-starting from the rear of the field. A solo spin by Stockton's Danny Contessotto caused a yellow on lap-24, with another coming on lap-30 when Lodis Robert Knittel and Kerby got together and into the wall coming off turn-two. As a result, for the first time in three weeks since the division went to single file re-starts, a wrecker was required to remove the two combatants.
Stacy continued to lead through another yellow for a solo spin on lap-36, with a fast returning Welch already back to fourth on the next green. Welch came to third on lap-39, and second on lap-42, but still trailed Stacy by a full straightaway. Stacy played the slower cars to his advantage and sailed home the winner with Welch, Miller, Philpot and Cary Treadway of Stockton, in only his second Grand Am start completing the top five. The victory for Stacy enabled him to move into the top-five in the season point standings with Welch holding a 102-point lead over Kerby at the top. Dabbs is third with Winters fourth in front of Stacy.
The BCRA Midgets and their Vintage counterparts were part of the "50s Night" program with Sterling Pratz of Mill Valley stealing the show with a near perfect night of fast tme, dash and feature win. His 13.275 clocking was a scant tick of the clock off the all-time Midget record of 13.147 set by Davey Hamilton of Las Vegas this past March.
Sixteen cars answered the bell for their 30-lap feature that had a tough time getting going. Anthony Arata of Napa took the early lead before bowing to Cliff Servetti of San Francisco on lap-three. Two circuits later, the point position fell to Pratz and the scramble for the remaining positions began. After starting 12th, 18-year old Thomas Meseraull of San Jose moved to fourth on lap-nine. Meseraull was passed by another teenager, 16-year-old Chuck Gurney, Jr. of Livermore, on lap-26. At the finish, it was Pratz, followed by three teensGurney, Jr., Meseraull and Matt Streeter of Salt Lake City--with Scott Dupont of Santa Rosa completing the top five.
Seventeen cars were actually on hand for the BCRA appearance. However, the fans were reminded how dangerous the sport can be during the second midget heat race when Rex Calderwood of Bakersfield rode the backchute wall and hit head-on into the tire barrier protecting the track exit area. Fortunately, Calderwood was able to walk away only complaining of some shoulder pain.
When the dust settled on the night's Street Stock action, it was Cary Treadway of Stockton with his third 1999 clean sweephis eighth feature triumph in 12 starts, ninth fast time including the last five in a row and fifth dash win.
Greg Albiani of Modesto took the early lead, then bowed to Robert Knittel of Lodi on lap-five. By the 13th go-round, the cream of the division was battling for the top spots with Scott Chappell of Lodi coming to second on lap-13, Jerry Crawford of Stockton in third on lap-14 and Treadway in fourth on lap-15. The only yellow in their 50-lapper fell for a overheated car on the front straight on lap-27.
On the re-start, Knittel and Crawford rubbed coming off turn-two allowing Treadway to slip underneath and grab the lead. Crawford hung on for second at the checkered flag over Knittel, Chappell and Albiani. Treadways dominance is such that he leads Chappell in the season point chase by 110 (730-620) with a "double points" night coming up next week.
The night's events were completed with the Pure Stock division action as Cary Hahn of Ripon took the first lap lead and held firm to lap-10 before passing the baton to Manteca's Danny Guibor. Guibor was untouchable from that point on as he added his first career feature win to his earlier heat and dash victories to notch a clean sweep of the division events. The remaining top five consisted of Jeff Lovelace of Stockton, brother Guy Guibor of Manteca in third, Adam Ramsdell of San Jose and Lodi's Aaron Shankel.
Other heat wins went to John Medina of Galt, Doug Lane of Stockton and Bryan Clark of Lodi. Lanes pursuit of season point leader Guy Guibor was hampered however when he suffered a blown engine in the trophy dash. Lane and Orville Dahl of Stockton are tied for second in season points at 660, 74 behind Guibor.
This coming Saturday is "double points" night at Stockton 99 Speedway sponsored by Zamora Automotive of Stockton, Lodi and Modesto and will feature a 50-lap main event for Late Model Sportsman. In addition to the NASCAR-sanctioned Late Model 50-lapper, "double points" will be at stake for Grand American Modifieds, Street Stocks and Pure Stocks, as well.
Ticket gates will open at 3:00 p.m. with qualifying set for 5:00 and green flag racing at 6:00. Adult tickets for the Zamora Automotive "double points" night will be $12, four for seniors over 65 and children six-to-12 with those under six getting in free. A family tickettwo adults and two childrenwill be available for $28.
Stockton 99 Speedway is located at 4105 N. Wilson Way, a quarter-mile west of Highway 99.
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