Michael Salazar of Antioch battled Aaron Crowell of Oakley to the finish in the International Motor Contest Association (IMCA) modified stock car main event Saturday night at Antioch Speedway. The race program was the last August event, as the speedway prepares for the World of Outlaws sprint car tour’s visit on Sunday, Sept. 7.
Salazar, who won a feature event early in the season, had damaged his car in June and was waiting for parts until his return on Saturday.
“I was hoping to get one or two more races in,” he said after the win. “To come back and win is fantastic.”
Salazar drew pole position in the feature because he finished last the night he crashed. On a lap three restart, he passed Crowell coming out of turn two. Salazar never relinquished the lead.
“I barely held him off – especially in lapped traffic,” Salazar said. “I could see the nose of his car pulling alongside of me lap after lap.”
Crowell and Salazar were both excited in victory lane.
“It was a great race,” Salazar said. “We were both pumped up after going door to door for the distance.”
Eric Vanhooser of Campbell brought home third place in his initial Antioch Speedway modified run. Brothers Kyle and Alex Wilson of Salinas rounded out the top five
Brown Goes Green to Checkered in SportMods
Keith Brown, Jr. of Pittsburg led start to finish in a non-stop IMCA SportMod feature event. Second place Fred Ryland of Brentwood couldn’t catch Brown. In fact, Ryland thought he was the leader.
“I just drove as fast as I could,” Brown, Jr. said. “Then, half-way through the race I saw Fred’s number in second place. I looked and saw him across the track coming out of turn two when I was coming out of turn four. That was a good feeling.”
In his previous outing, Brown, Jr., failed to finish the race. He made several changes to his car that enabled him to score his first win of the year.
Following Ryland was Paul Mulder of San Jose, Jeremy Hoff of Copperopolis, and Oakley’s Megan Ponciano.
Kimo Wins Hobby Stock Thriller
Vacaville’s Kimo Oreta brought home his fifth Hobby Stock feature win of the season. It did not come easy in the caution flag filled event. Brentwood’s Brad Myers and Oakley’s Nick Baldwin challenged Oreta.
“Brad (Myers) had me, then he got tangled up in some traffic,” Oreta said. “Nick (Baldwin) and I had a heck of a run for the money. He got the lead from me a couple of times, then I got the lead back. That’s great racing.”
Oreta had his Camaro working well high on the racetrack. He took the lead from Baldwin and stayed at the top when the race was ended after the sixth caution flag.
“You never know what is going to happen in racing,” said Oreta. “Time was up for the event. A win is a win.”
Curran, Gustafson and Wagner Win
Brent Curran of Antioch continued his domination of the four cylinder
“Four-Banger” division. He topped Jordan Swank of Concord and Carlos Gonzalez of Bethel Island.
Mike Gustafson of Concord raced to the checkered flag first in the limited late model main event. Mark Garner and Larry Damitz of Vallejo completed the top three.
Bay Point’s Danny Wagner came from the middle of the pack to win in the Dwarf car main event. Mike Corsaro of Tracy finished second.
Preparation Underway for World of Outlaws Sprint Cars
There will be no racing at Antioch Speedway this weekend as the track prepares for the World of Outlaws sprint cars event on Sunday, Sept. 7.
The World of Outlaws September visitis the speedway’s biggest event of the year. The professional drivers in the World of Outlaws tour North America throughout the season.
North Dakota’s Donny Schatz is the driver to beat in the series. Schatz has 17 wins to date. Oklahoma’s Daryn Pittman follows with 12 wins. Local favorite Paul McMahan of Elk Grove is in third place in World of Outlaws points and has four wins this season.
Reserved seating tickets for Antioch Speedway’s Sept. 7 World of Outlaws race are available on the World of Outlaws website and on the Antioch Speedway website: www.ovalmotorsports.com