Penton Raceway held their season finale on Saturday night, their ninth race of the season. Four divisions saw action at the 3/8-mile clay oval on Saturday, including a special rookie late model class race. Three series championships were also decided this weekend as well, making the final night of the season an exciting one at the track.
Several drivers had a legitimate shot at taking the Late Model series title this season, though one driver stood out among the rest. Chad Wallace notched three wins at Penton this season and finished in the runner-up spot three times as well. His lowest result of the year came on Saturday, when he finished third, but it proved to be enough to secure the championship with a 24 point margin over second place Taylor Mitcham, who did not race this weekend.
On Saturday, Dana Eiland drove his Late Model to victory lane for the second time this year in the night’s main event. Cord Dodgen came home second and Wallace was third. Chase Edge rounded out the field in fourth.
Wallace and Edge led the series with three wins each. Edge, last years champion, finished third in the final points standings, just one point behind Mitcham, while Dodgen was fourth, 14 points out of the top-3.
Perhaps the tightest points race of the year came in the Bandit division, where Patrick Taylor and Casey Watts battled it out until the end. With five wins, Watts was the star of the season, while Taylor was a model of consistency, finishing in the top three in nearly every race. Taylor held a 10-point advantage heading into the final race, and though he finished one position behind Watts, it was still enough to secure the season title.
Brandon Freeman took the Bandit main event for his first win of the season on Saturday, while Jonathan Archer was second. Bobby Dulce was third followed by Watts in fourth and Taylor in fifth. Jonathan Morris finished in sixth place and Monkey Gates in seventh rounded out the field.
David Dark pulled out the win in the Hobby main event on Saturday, but David Martin once again earned the series championship by 20 points over Jake Traylor. Martin finished fourth on Saturday while Traylor was second, though it didn’t matter as Martin’s points lead had grown throughout the season.
Dark’s win was his third of the season, the most of any driver in the series, and he finished third in the final standings. Tanner Smith came home third in the race behind Traylor and Tony Hill was fifth behind Martin.
There was no Limited Sportsman race on Saturday, meaning Darren Grant has secured the series points championship by 16 points over Matt Woodson. Nick Marsolf was third in the final standings and Sam Moore, who had a series-high two wins, was fourth.
Though there was no Sportsman race, the fans in attendance were treated to a race by the next generation of racers when the rookie Late Model drivers competed in a shootout. Jay Elliott was the class of the field on this Saturday night, earning the checkered flag. Donovan Singer drove his No. 6 racer home second and Junior McQuire finished third.
After the race, track officials expressed thanks to all the supports of Penton Raceway as well as the drivers and fans for another exciting year of dirt track racing.