Fernley 95A Speedway staged a doubleheader for the IMCA Modifieds last weekend, with the I-80 Challenge running Friday night and a full racing program with all track divisions on Saturday. Friday’s A main saw Shawn Natenstedt out front for most of the race, but Cory Sample’s car was working in the high groove and he passed Natenstedt on the outside three laps from the end to take the win. Robert Miller came home third. Last Saturday it was again Sample and Natenstedt battling for position, only this time it was second. Randy Artz from Battle Mountain grabbed the lead from the outside pole at the start and was never headed, surviving several restarts. Sample came home second, followed by Natenstedt, Josh Ogg, and Travis White rounding out the top five.
In the other racing divisions on Saturday night, Malen Gonzales won the Pro Stock main, leading Rob Grace, David Rauscher, and Paul Stevens to the checker. Tom Haxall held off points leader Carl Barlow to take the Hobby Stock main, with Rick Miller, Jake Baker, and Mike Baker finishing third through fifth. Joe Frock chased down and passed Sam Marson to take the Dwarf car victory, with Bert Endicott, Glen Sciarrani, and Roy Peterson in the next three finishing positions. Jesse James won his second Super Stock 4 main of the season, vaulting him into the points lead over second-place finisher Kenny Martin. And points leader Mark Serchio Jr. extended his points lead in the Pure Stock division, beating Rich Innis to the checker. There was also a five-team (10 cars) field of chain racers on hand both nights, providing some entertaining action for the crowd.
Carson City’s Mackena Bell is back on track after a weekend off, as the K&N Pro Series East visits Greenville-Pickens Speedway for the second time this season. With only two races remaining, Bell is determined to build some momentum to carry into the 2015 season. Check next week’s Fox Sports 1 listings for the tape-delayed air time.
Congratulations to Will Power of Penske Racing on his first IndyCar championship after four runner-up placings in the title chase. Power beat out teammate Helio Castroneves, who now also has four second-place runs in the points chase to his name. The Indycar series is the first major racing body to end its 2014 season.
Congratulations are also due Kasey Kahne, who became the most recent winner in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup series at Atlanta, ensuring him a place in the Chase for the Championship. Matt Kenseth also locked himself into the Chase on points at Atlanta, leaving just two spots open on points. Going into tonight’s Richmond race, Ryan Newman and Greg Biffle hold those positions, and need decent finishes to keep Clint Bowyer or Kyle Larson from overtaking them. However, there are 16 wild cards (winless drivers still in the top 30 in points, including those four) who could take the Richmond win and leave just one spot open. A win could also give a couple of others enough points to put them into the top 30. Do you think there might be some desperation moves made late in the race? Can you say “pressure”?
Formula 1 is back in action this weekend, racing at the famed Monza Autodromo in Italy. The aftermath of the incident at Spa between the two Mercedes drivers, Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton, is still reverberating through the team. Rosberg was issued a fine of an undisclosed amount by the team following the incident that denied Mercedes an almost certain 1-2 finish, and cost Hamilton dearly in lost points. Hamilton will probably not be inviting Nico over for Christmas dinner this year.
And just when I had finally gotten used to using “Nationwide series” instead of “Busch series,” NASCAR will be re-naming its second-tier touring show the “XFINITY series” beginning in 2015, inking a 10-year contract with Comcast for the use of the company’s residential service brand. Nationwide’s sponsorship dollars will be going to Dale Earnhardt Jr. for next season.