NASCAR CHAMPIONSHIP BATTLES HEAT UP WITH SUNDAY SPECIAL AT THOMPSON SPEEDWAY
By Kyle Souza, Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park
THOMPSON, Conn. -- With just three races remaining in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series season, championship battles will heat up on Sunday when Thompson Speedway returns to action with another Sunday showdown. As part of a full card of racing, Lock City Drift will compete in The Clubhouse Circuit Showdown, and kids will have a chance to win prize packs, giveaways and more as part of Back to School Night at TSMP. A full bouncy house will be setup on the midway along with plenty of other games and activities to enjoy on top of the racing.
Three of Thompson’s five championship races have tight battles right at the top. In the Limited Sportsman division, Shawn Monahan is looking for his third straight title, and picking up three checkered flags has earned him his spot at the top of the standings in 2019.
Monahan leads by just a mere eight points over Kyle Gero, who doesn’t have any victories, but has been consistent enough to stay in the fight. Meghan Fuller, who is just 20 points back, is looking to follow in the footsteps of her successful family name by earning her first title this year. Ryan Morgan (27 points back) and Brent Gleason (32 points back) complete the top five. With heat races awarding drivers points, and the large car count in this division, it’s truly anyone’s championship to win.
The Mini Stock championship battle has two Michalski names at the top, but another driver closing in. Scott Michalski earned his first and only victory of the season as part of the Thompson 125 in June and leads by eight points over Steve Michalski. In seven feature races, these two are the only drivers to score top 10 finishes in each event. However, Doug Curry, who has been to Victory Lane in two of the last three races, is just 19 points back, looking for his first Thompson title.
In search of his second Late Model championship, William Wall leads by 13 over Woody Pitkat, who’s been to the winner’s circle in two of the last three races. Wall has been consistent, finishing inside the top five in all but one of the Late Model races so far. Pitkat, driving for Hartwell Motorsports, is no stranger to winning success, but seems to have found a bit more over the last few races. Both drivers are former champions of the division and are going to go down to the wire battling for the 2019 crown. Ryan Morgan is third, just 22 back, while Derek Gluchacki is fourth, 28 points out. These two drivers will be right in contention if one of the top two slip.
For the last three years, and seven times overall, Keith Rocco has been the king of Thompson Speedway’s Sunoco Modified division. And with just three races left, he leads by nearly one-race distance over the rest of the pack, 44 points, in search of another crown. Rocco has three victories in seven events and is the only driver in the field to score more than one win. Woody Pitkat is second, while Todd Owen sits third, 45 back. A total of 39 different Sunoco Modified drivers have already been on the track this season.
Bryan Narducci’s path towards his first SK Light Modified® isn’t going to be easy down the stretch. Albert Ouellette is second, and former Mini Stock champion Wayne Burroughs Jr. is third, quickly finding the speed under the hood of his No. 32. This could be one of Thompson’s more competitive championship battles when the final race of the season begins at the Sunoco World Series in October.
Pit areas open for NASCAR Whelen All-American Series divisions at 10:30 a.m., with practice scheduled to take the first green flag at 12:30 p.m. Lock City Drift will also begin their practice and qualifying action at 12:30 p.m.
NASCAR heat races begin at 2:30 p.m., with feature racing to follow at approximately 4:30 p.m. Fans can enter the grandstands for just $18, a ticket that will give access to both the NASCAR racing and Lock City Drift. Those seniors (65+), veterans and active military can enter the grandstands for $16. As always, children 12 and under are free in general admission.
Anyone who wishes to purchase a pit pass can do so for $35, but fans should note that any children that enter the pit area must pay full price.
For more information on Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, fans are encouraged to visit www.thompsonspeedway.com, and follow the track on social media via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.