NARC NEWSLINE, February 2, 2020, By Jim Allen … Now that the Super Bowl hype is finally over, it’s time to get fired up for the sport that really gets our heart thumping and adrenaline flowing. Of course, that would be sprint car racing. The best thing about this time of year is that there’s a lot of moving components as sanctioning bodies release their schedules and race teams establish new partnerships, roll out new car designs, announce sponsorships and roll out their plans.
So, where do we start? Let’s kick it off with Justin Sanders. The Aromas, CA ace is a proven winner at bullrings such as Ocean Speedway, Marysville, Placerville, and Chico, but now we can expose that skill set to another seven other tracks in a run for the 2020 championship. Sanders has partnered up with Larry Antaya for a campaign in the 16A XXX sprinter. With backing from Alkaline88 water and Fire Protection Management and a fresh color scheme, this may be one of the most interesting team to watch this season. This team has the same amount of swagger as a walk-off home run.
It’s also going to be nice to have Jodie Robinson on the NARC King of the West campaign full-time. She can drive the wheels off any open wheel car and is a proven winner, with a SCCT win to her credit last year. She will be piloting the Dave Vertullo 83V and competing against Tracy’s Kyle Offill for the Johnstone Supply Rookie of the Year honors.
Then there is the one and only Tim Kaeding, who will be chasing a third NARC King of the West crown. Kaeding won his first series title in 2002 aboard the Wright One sprinter. Got his second one nine years later with a different car owner in Roth Motorsports. Well, guess what? It’s nine years later … again … and TK is driving for a another car owner in Joshua Bates! Could another championship be in store? I see a pattern.
Then there is the Tarlton Motorsports team who just announced that they’ve made a Hoosier state connection by hiring Indiana’s Spencer Bayston to driver their black number 21. If you go to Spencer’s website and check out his racing accomplishments, most drivers would be happy to call that a career. The 22-year old has been racing for half his life already and is looking to spend most of 2020 in a 410-sprint car.
2019 CHAMPIONSHIP CELEBRATION BRUNCH LEFTOVERS: Sometimes, the best laid plans go awry. In this case, the sound system at the Brookside Country Club glitched during the season highlight video, washing out the second track, which happened to be the race announcers. Dean Mills had put together countless hours to make it perfect, but sometimes things don’t go as planned. However, that proved not be a problem at all, because Bud Kaeding grabbed the mic and narrated the video the rest of the way. He may want to consider going the Tony Romo route after his career is over. While some of Bud’s comments were not exactly PC, this was a snowflake free environment and it was funny as all heck. … The NARC Benevolent Fund auction raised more than $13,000. A Yetti full of tri-tip went for over $2000; a basket of Katie’s cookies went for $700. You’ve got to love the sprint car family’s generosity. Thank you for all your support. … Yes, that was Dominic Scelzi wearing the Burger King crown. …By the way, The Brookside Country Club will host this seasons Championship Celebration Brunch on November 8th.
… DJ Netto won the 2019 title the hard way … one race at a time. He always seems to produce something special when he really needed too. The fact that he qualified third at the Stockton season finale was HUGE! That set the stage for the rest of the night, breaking the points tie with Bud Kaeding. For those of you at home taking notes, Netto’s worst finish all season was a 13th. By comparison, Bud Kaeding’s was an 18th, Dominic Scelzi’s a 20th, and Willie Croft a 22nd. … If you’re one of those “what if” types, rewind to the fourth race of the season, the June 8th Peter Murphy Classic at Tulare. Kaeding went from leading at the 29 3/4 lap point to finishing 18th. That was the back breaker in the points chase. … Katie Williams and the late Morrie Williams were the recipients of the Dave Bradway Jr. Inspirational Trophy and there was a dry eye in the house. Mine included. … Johnstone Supply Rookie of the Year? That would be Geoff Ensign. Swift Metal Finishing Hardcharger of the Year? That would be the Human Highlight Reel also. … $3000 was passed out to the drivers who made it to every event in 2019, courtesy of Williams Roofing. … The 2020 banquet will also be held at Brookside Country Club on Sunday, November 8th. …
2020 SCHEDULE NOTES: If you’ve never been to Kern County Raceway Park in Bakersfield, I’ve got yet another fantastic reason for you to attend the NARC King of the West and track season opener on March 14th. This one will offer “one ticket” to witness both the NASCAR Superstocks and Modified’s on the half-mile asphalt track AND the NARC sprint cars and mini-stocks on the one-third mile dirt track. That’s a pretty cool offer! Both tracks are first class! … Speaking of Dave Bradway Jr, the May 2nd race at Chico will mark the 30th Annual running of the Bradway Memorial. This will also be the last season that Dianne and Dave Durica will be spearheading the fundraising efforts. The pair will be retiring. By the way, lap sponsorships are officially on sale now for $100 apiece. Reach out to Dianne on social media if you are interested. And yes, Randy Frank promised to design a gem of a t-shirt design for the 30th race. … There are three NARC/SCCT co-sanctioned events this season … Three races at Calistoga Speedway, Petaluma Speedway, Ocean Speedway and the Stockton Dirt Track. … Still don’t have a race date for Thursday, August 27th. Still working on it! … ARP has returned as the fast time sponsor of the NARC King of the West Fujitsu Racing Series. …
NARC NOTES: Thank you to Kenny Allen and the fine people at Chico Truck & RV. They auctioned off a CTech pit tool cart with the proceeds benefiting the NARC Benevolent Fund. More than $1200 was raised and the lucky winner was Jacob Porter from Michigan. …From the “well that one kind of took us kind of by surprise” department, Peter Murphy is now the new promoter at Keller Auto Raceway in Hanford. Murphy, who was looking at possibly promoting Skagit Speedway, decided to stay closer to home which keeps this personable Aussie mate in our backyard. That’s a giant win for California open wheel fans! The May 16th Peter Murphy Classic is still scheduled at Tulare. The bad news is that the NARC King of the West series only has one race at his new track this season and that is the Cotton Classic in October. I’m sure that will change in seasons to come. … Fujitsu General USA is back as the title sponsor. … Plans for the Williams Motorsports “0” car are still up in the air, with the passing of legendary car owner Morrie Williams. Don’t be surprised to see Bud Kaeding piloting the iconic BK racing 69 this season. Stay tuned for more on that later … I’m looking for a $750 sponsor for a “History of NARC” coloring book that we are producing for a kid giveaway. Your company name on the front. If you are interested, please reach out to jallen@NARC410.com …
… We’re also not 100% sure if Roth Motorsports is going to field a King of the West points chaser this season. Both Dennis and Teresa Roth are fighting through some health issues right now. We wish them both a speedy recovery. … Congratulations to Jason Statler, who is officially retired after an awesome 30-year run. He was an institution on the NARC and King of the West trail with Dave Rios! … Don’t be surprised to see Jimmy Paniagua’s number 18 car out at a few races this season. Driver TBA. … Welcome back to heat race sponsors Brown & Miller Racing Solutions and FK Rod Ends. … There is a strong possibility that we will see North Dakota driver Tim Estenson back in the DJ Netto 88E car this season. … Dominic Scelzi is back in the Gary Scelzi 41 for a whirlwind 2020 campaign. They plan to race in California as much as possible before taking off for the Midwest during the summer. … We’ve added a vintage photo page to the NARC410.com website. If you have any old NARC photos from the 1960 to 1989 era, please email us a copy so we can add them to the collection.
OTHER OPEN WHEEL NOTES: You must admit, it’s nice to watch the Chili Bowl and gloat about the talent of the California drivers dominating the headlines. At least there is one good thing coming out of California. Otherwise it’s all about illegal straws, high gas prices, the homeless, utility shut offs, potholes and death by taxation. … Most of you have noticed that the World of Outlaw swing through California is in April, instead of March this year. There was a little bit of a power play involved as several promoters didn’t know they had an April WoO event at their track until the WoO published their schedule during the promoter’s workshop. They are pretty much renting most racetracks and promoting their own shows. It should be noted that they have a total of 11 full-time teams this season. … By the way, just as a random thought or dream, wouldn’t it be nice to see Andy Forsberg race full-time again in a 410-sprint car before he eventually retires. Mr. Excitement’s exploits at Chico and Placerville are legendary and he could probably compete at both places blindfolded and still win. Time for a change. Just saying. …
Schedules, membership forms, rules, and a variety of other information can be found at NARC410.com. There is also an Annual Competition & General Meeting on Wednesday, February 5th in Modesto if you are interested.
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Coming to you live from Auburn, CA! See ya!