THOMPSON, Conn. — The second half of the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series season begins on Sunday at Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park.
With five races in the record books, championship battles are close in nearly all the divisions, and Sunday’s afternoon showdown will put drivers to the test once again, battling for the checkered flag, but also chasing crucial points towards the season standings.
Race fans won’t want to miss this NWAAS and Lock City Drift special, as Lock City will combine their New England Top Drift Series with NASCAR action for the first time. Just like the Street Series, Lock City’s Top Drift competitors will compete throughout the day on the road course right behind the frontstretch.
Fans can purchase one general admission ticket and watch both events. The switch from the Street Series to Top Drift will give fans a chance to see more of a Pro-AM style of competition, with more V8 cars, and higher horsepower.
On the high-banked NASCAR oval, the Limited Sportsman title chase seems to change each time drivers hit the track. Rising star Meghan Fuller shows the way by five points over defending two-time champion Shawn Monahan in a championship battle that has the top seven drivers separated by just 15 points. The competitive class has seen 35 drivers take the green flag in competition with four different winners in the first five shows. Kyle Gero, Ryan Waterman, Ryan Morgan and Zachary Robinson are all within just 10 of Fuller.
Off his first win of the season in the Late Models, Woody Pitkat will look to continue to close the gap in the standings. Pitkat is fourth, 22 points off the lead, in a division that has seen four winners in their four events. William Wall leads the parade by 10 points over Mark Jenison in search of his second title and has top five finishes in three of the races so far. Jenison might still be looking for his first win, but he has finishes of sixth or better in each event. Derek Gluchacki is third, coming off his second-place finish last Sunday afternoon. The Late Model division is another one of Thompson’s competitive classes with 30 of their own competing so far in 2019.
It’s the battle of the Michalski’s at the top of the Mini Stock standings, as both Scott and Steve have one victory on the season and are within three points of each other. With his fifth consecutive top five last Sunday, Scott holds the advantage over Steve, who won the Icebreaker, but has been consistently inside the top 10, keeping him within striking distance. Douglas Curry, who scored his first win of the season last weekend, is just 19 points out and is quietly looking to strike. Jared Roy entered the most recent event just a few markers out, but trouble sidelined him before the finish, and he’s now sixth, 48 from the top.
Keith Rocco might have a stranglehold on the Sunoco Modified division for now, but don’t let any of the other competitors out of your sight just yet. Todd Owen is just 32 points back, with Troy Talman 35 out — both within striking distance if Rocco slips just once. Off his first win of the season, former division champion Woody Pitkat jumped to fourth, 39 points from the lead. All four of the drivers finished inside the top six in the standings last year. There have also been five different winners in the first five Sunoco Modified races of the season. Owen and Talman are favorites to add their name to the winners list on Sunday.
Bryan Narducci might have seen his eight-race winless streak broken last time on the track, but he still holds a comfortable 63-point lead in the SK Light Modified® championship chase. Narducci is the defending NASCAR Whelen All-American Series Division III championship driver and leads those standings headed for the second half of this year. Albert Ouellette is second, while Brett Gonyaw’s consistent start has him just one point behind Ouellette in third.
Sunday’s action gets underway with NASCAR Whelen All-American Series practice at 12:30 p.m., along with the practice and qualifying efforts for Lock City Drift. Qualifying heat racing for the NWAAS divisions begins at 2:30 p.m., with feature racing to follow.
Fans can enter the grandstands with a general admission ticket for $18, while those seniors (65+), veteran and active military are $16, and children 12 and under are free.
For more information on Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, visit us on the web at www.thompsonspeedway.com and follow the track on social media via Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
-Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park Press Release
-Photo credit: Clarus Studios