SACRAMENTO, Calif. – May the best man win is the scenario for at least two, and possibly three King of the West by NARC Fujitsu 410 Sprint Car Series drivers this weekend.
A power trio will square off for the championship on Saturday, Nov. 2 at the Stockton Dirt Track during the Tribute to Gary Patterson.
For the first time in in the organization’s 60-year history, two drivers – D.J. Netto and Bud Kaeding – enter the final race of the season tied for the point lead, with another driver in Dominic Scelzi lurking just seven points back.
It will be an open-wheel battle for the ages in a racing program that also features the 360 sprint cars of the Sprint Car Challenge Tour.
On the surface, all three drivers project the appearance of being calm, cool and collected in regards to chasing the title. Each says that all they want to do is win the feature event on Saturday. However, the undercurrent is much stronger and portrays a different message.
Each driver knows they have a shot at sprint car history by capturing the coveted King of the West-NARC crown, and they are all keeping their game face on in hopes that the competition flinches or makes a mistake.
The three contenders have taken different routes to get to this point.
D.J. Netto has been the model of consistency all season long. He has posted 16 top-10 finishes in 18 events this season. Surprisingly, Netto has yet to pull off a victory, but has led the standings for all but three races this season due to his top finishes.
Bud Kaeding is the series’ 2017 champion. He is the perpetual points chaser and has racked up eight top-10s in the past 10 races. Kaeding’s three straight runner-up finishes in the last three races have moved him into the top-spot tie for the first time all year.
Dominic Scelzi has been the most prolific winner this season, scoring five victories at four different tracks. Those wins helped offset some “off” nights earlier this season. In the meantime, he has methodically worked his way back into the title hunt.
While the top three battle for a title, everybody else is looking to play the role of spoiler by running away with the healthy winner’s paycheck on Saturday.
To date, 10 different drivers have scored victories in the ultra-competitive traveling series.
Other winners who will be looking to score again include Rico Abreu, Sean Watts, Chase Johnson and Colby Copeland.
Other top contenders expected to compete are Shane Golobic, Willie Croft, Ryan Bernal, Geoff Ensign, Nathan Rolfe, Kenny Allen, Mitchell Faccinto, Jason Statler and more.
Front gates open at 3 p.m. Qualifying will get underway around 5:00 p.m. and racing starts at 6 p.m. There will also be a special Champions autograph session taking place near victory lane between 4 and 6 p.m.