DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Toni McCray would like nothing better than to be standing on stage in December at the Charlotte Convention Center / NASCAR Hall of Fame and being recognized as a NASCAR champion.

“It would be awesome; it would be quite an honor,” said the 37-year-old from Highland Park, California, of the recently announced 2014 NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Awards. “I want a championship really bad. The only way to get it is to win races.

“That’s our goal and we’re going to work hard for it.”

McCray took a big step in the right direction Saturday night when she became the first female driver in the 15-year history of racing at California’s Irwindale Speedway to collect two wins in the same night. McCray swept the Lucas Oil Late Model 30-lap twin features to pull within 18 points of defending track champion Ryan Partridge for the division lead.

“We’re definitely carrying a lot of momentum,” said McCray, who has three wins and 10 top fives in 10 starts on Irwindale’s progressively-banked asphalt half-mile. “Our team has really clicked. Our cars are really good. And we’re consistent.

“As a racer, I’m just as good or better than everybody out there. We’re going to be tough to beat. We all want to win races, our goal is to win every race that we can.”

McCray, who has been racing Late Models since 2009 and is in her fourth year of running full-time, is also second behind Partridge in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series California standings. She is 51st in the national standings.

Anthony Anders continues to lead the national standings – as he has done since the beginning of the season – but his points lead her shrunk to just three over two-time defending national champion Lee Pulliam.

Anders, of Easley, South Carolina, has 17 wins, 28 top fives and 30 top 10s in 32 pavement Late Model Division starts at South Carolina’s Anderson Speedway and Greenville Speedway. He failed to improve on his 684 points.

STANDINGS: NATIONAL TOP 500 | STATE/PROVINCE

Pulliam, of Semora, North Carolina, meanwhile, collected a pair of wins in four Late Model starts over the weekend With 13 wins, 22 top fives and top 10s in 26 starts across four tracks, Pulliam has 681 points.

NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Division I drivers are ranked by their best 18 NASCAR points finishes in series-sanctioned events. Drivers receive two points for every car they finish ahead of – up to 18 cars – and three points for a win, with an additional two points available if the driver starts 10th or lower.

Pulliam won at Virginia’s South Boston Speedway Thursday, finished second in the 171-lap Rusty Harpe Memorial at Caraway Speedway in Sophia, North Carolina, Friday, and finished first and second in twin features at Southern National Motorsports Park in Lucama, North Carolina Saturday. Pulliam also has won this season at Motor Mile Speedway in Radford, Virginia.

Connecticut’s Keith Rocco remained in third with 646 points in the pavement modified divisions at Connecticut’s three ovals: Waterford Speedbowl, Stafford Motor Speedway and Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park. The 2010 national champion was rained out of a start at Stafford Friday, and collected his eighth win of the season Saturday at Waterford.

Peyton Sellers is fourth with 621 points, followed by Dillon Bassett at 594.

Ryan Preece moved up a spot to sixth following his second straight win in the Cromarty Cup 50 at New York’s Riverhead Raceway.

Tommy Lemons Jr. (South Boston, Southern National, Caraway and Motor Mile) is seventh, followed by Matt Bowling (South Boston, Motor Mile, Southern National and Caraway), Kres Van Dyke (Virginia’s Lonesome Pine and Tennessee’s Kingsport Speedway) and Randy Porter (Greenville and Anderson) round out the top 10.

Drivers in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series compete for track and U.S. state/Canadian province championships in addition to the national title.

In addition to finishing second to Partridge in the Late Model Division at Irwindale last year, she also finished second to Rip Michels in the track’s Division II Super Late Models. It was during a late season qualifying effort that the conversation came up with Michels, a multi-time track champion, about 2014 plans.

McCray’s crew chief, Rod Johnson Jr., was leaving to focus on his brother-in-law’s team, while Michels said he was hanging up his racing helmet.

“We talked through the offseason and got a plan together,” said McCray, whose father Rick made 117 starts in the NASCAR K&N Pro Series West and 26 in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. “(Michels) got the cars before the season and started working on everything. The last few races we really started clicking and the chemistry with our whole entire team has really come together. I really feel we’re the best team out there right now.”

The result Saturday was two wins. And that could mean more trophies come December.

Established in 1982, the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series is NASCAR’s national championship program for weekly short track auto racing. In all, 58 paved and dirt tracks throughout the United States and Canada participate.

Connecticut-based Whelen Engineering is the series’ title sponsor. Whelen Engineering is a leading manufacturer of automotive, aviation, industrial and emergency vehicle lighting. NASCAR tracks and pace cars across North America are among the many showcases for Whelen products.

NASCAR IMC – – Sal Sigala Jr photo 

Pos Drivers Starts Wins T-5 T-10 Points
1 Anthony Anders 32 17 28 30 684
2 Lee Pulliam 26 13 22 22 681
3 Keith Rocco 21 8 18 21 646
4 Peyton Sellers 21 5 19 21 621
5 Dillon Bassett 21 7 17 20 594
6 Ryan Preece 21 7 16 20 567
7 Tommy Lemons, Jr 28 4 15 21 562
8 Matt Bowling 24 2 16 20 560
9 Kres Vandyke 18 7 16 17 545
10 Randy Porter 18 5 13 15 517
11 Chad Finchum 18 9 15 15 489
12 Ryan Stiltner 18 0 15 16 464
13 Jason Durgan(R) 20 3 11 18 437
14 Myatt Snider 23 0 9 15 432
15 Ted Christopher 17 1 8 15 431
16 Brandon Fox 27 0 10 15 420
17 Joe Wilder(R) 18 0 3 16 416
18 Marty Ward 14 0 12 14 410
19 Josh Berry 15 5 11 13 407
20 Burt Myers 14 4 9 13 406
21 Payton Ryan(R) 19 2 7 15 400
22 Spencer Davis 19 0 6 11 394
23 Tim Brown 14 2 9 13 382
24 Mike Darne 18 0 9 13 380
25 Nick Heywood(R) 12 3 10 12 379
26 Stewart Friesen 12 6 11 11 376
27 Matt Waltz 15 6 11 13 368
28 Jeff Strunk 13 2 9 11 368
29 Ryan Wilson 24 0 4 14 368
30 Daniel Alvarez(R) 24 0 1 16 362
31 Cory Dumpert 13 7 8 12 361
32 David Roberts 12 1 9 12 359
33 Jamie Lafountain 18 0 8 16 358
34 Greg Edwards 13 5 11 12 353
35 Travis Bruno(R) 12 2 10 11 352
36 Craig Lutz 13 1 8 12 345
37 Austin Thaxton 13 1 8 11 343
38 Justin Sorrow 12 2 8 12 342
39 Lee Jeffreys 14 0 8 11 342
40 Howie Brode 13 3 9 13 333
41 Deac Mccaskill 19 6 12 13 332
42 Ryan Partridge 10 5 10 10 331
43 Jeran Frailey 13 5 13 13 329
44 Duane Howard 13 3 7 9 327
45 Craig Von Dohren 13 3 7 9 325
46 Brenden Queen 21 0 6 12 324
47 Doug Manmiller 13 4 8 9 322
48 Danny Bohn 14 0 6 10 316
49 Mark Lamberton(R) 11 3 9 9 311
50 Ed Puleo 13 2 5 9 310
51 Toni Marie Mccray 10 3 10 10 309
52 Rick Walt(R) 16 7 13 14 307
53 Rob Janovic, Jr 13 0 8 8 306
54 Tyler Chadwick 14 1 5 9 305
55 Gord Shepherd 16 4 12 16 304
56 Timmy Jordan(R) 12 0 4 11 302
57 Matt Sheppard(R) 10 1 8 10 301
58 Kyle James 13 1 7 10 299
59 Josh Oakley 12 3 6 9 297
60 Donnie Hill 11 4 9 11 296
61 Shane Lee 16 0 5 13 296
62 Chad Pendleton 11 3 10 10 295
63 Todd Patnode 9 4 8 9 294
64 Craig Stallard 19 0 1 9 294
65 Trey Gibson 10 0 9 10 292
66 Jason Myers 14 3 6 8 289
67 Tom Rogers, Jr 13 1 8 11 287
68 Dalton Sargeant(R) 18 0 2 8 286
69 David Garborcauskas, Jr 15 1 7 10 281
70 Kyle Purvis 11 1 10 11 281
71 Nick Smith 12 1 10 10 281
72 Leon Zeitner 15 1 8 12 279
73 Mike Mahaney(R) 11 2 6 10 276
74 Frank Cozze 12 0 6 9 276
75 Michael Koeneke 8 3 8 8 273
76 Bill Leighton, Jr 12 1 9 12 273
77 Mark Wertz 14 0 9 13 272
78 Bruce Anderson, Jr 16 0 4 10 272
79 Justin Zeitner 15 1 7 12 271
80 David Rogers 11 0 2 9 270
81 Mike Brooks 10 3 6 8 269
82 Codie Aubin(R) 14 1 4 10 267
83 Steve Carlson 8 2 8 8 264
84 Dwight Brown(R) 16 2 11 16 264
85 Joey Gada 13 1 2 10 263
86 R A Brown 10 2 6 7 262
87 Robert Tyler 11 2 7 9 262
88 George Lindsay 11 2 6 10 262
89 Bobby Mccarty 12 0 3 10 260
90 Jason O’brien 11 2 8 9 258
91 Larry Wight(R) 10 1 6 9 257
92 Timmy Solomito 12 2 7 9 256
93 Andrew Porter 10 0 4 10 256
94 Zeke Shell 10 1 6 7 255
95 Dylan Smith 12 0 3 9 254
96 Randy Frailey 12 5 8 10 253
97 Jase Kaser 12 0 6 12 252
98 Matthew Parsons 11 0 7 11 252
99 Brian Richardson 11 6 11 11 250
100 William Byron(R) 12 0 6 7 250

 

NASCAR D1 Points: McCray Makes History as Pulliam Gains Ground