2009 Local Tracks


Car count hits 7

WLM numbers not a surprise for promoters

By Scott Linesburgh

Record Staff Writer

July 19, 2009 6:00 AM

STOCKTON - The temperature was high, and the number of cars in the premier division were low. But Stockton 99 Speedway promoters Tony and Carol Noceti insist they are ready for what might be a tough summer for auto racing in Northern California.

A season-low seven cars showed up for the featured NASCAR Western Late Model race won by Justin Philpott of Tracy on Saturday. That didn't catch the promoters by surprise. They also scheduled a 199-lap Enduro race to go along with the usual NASCAR weekly program, which drew an estimated crowd of 1,500.

Joe Addison claimed victory in the Enduro race.

Carol Noceti said she knew the Late Model car count would be down for several reasons. There was a 100-lap race WLM race at All-American Raceway in Roseville, several drivers announced they were on vacation and a poor economy has made it tougher to compete every week. Plus the heat didn't help matters.

"We knew this was going to happen because we're in touch with our drivers constantly," Carol Noceti said. "It's a tough day. It's going to be a tough couple of weeks for us. We'll see when school's back in session, everybody will be back.

"I'm not discouraged. This is pretty normal for July."

David Philpott of Tracy ignored the 100-degree heat to compete in the Western Late Models and the Grand American Modifieds, the first time this season the 49-year-old driver has pulled double duty. He finished second in the Late Model race and eighth in the Grand American event.

Justin Philpott, who leads the WLM points race, said he wished there were more cars, but he needed the win.

"It doesn't matter if there's 20 cars or five cars, if you win its 50 points," Justin Philpott said.

With Stockton 99 competing with All-American Speedway and Madera Speedway for late model cars, Tony Noceti is hoping to bring in more special events such as the Enduro.

"You have to find different ways to entertain the fans," he said. "We all know that all three tracks have gone up and down on (Western Late Model) cars, depending on what's going on."

Scott Winters of Tracy won his seventh consecutive Grand American Modified main event. Aaron Coonfield of Riverbank won the Street Stock race. Jim Morgan won the Mini Stock main event.

Contact reporter Scott Linesburgh at (209) 546-8281 or slinesburgh@recordnet.com.

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