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Winners From A (Ahumada Jr.) to Z (Zapien Jr.) on Saturday Night at Vado

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April 23, 2022  |  by Chris Stepan

After qualifying races were completed during the April 23rd Hot City Nights event at the Vado Speedway Park, the five features were on tap and produced several first-time season winners in the process.

The S.H. Automotive Pure Stocks had another entertaining weekly battle for the lead for the majority of the 15-lap event between Michael Hartman Jeremy DuBois, who started in the 12th and 13th spots respectively. The duo battled early with Jaden Manicki-Gallivan out front as the trio ran nose to tail and side by side for the majority of the event, at times battling three wide out front. DuBois and Hartman split a lapped car while battling for the lead, which allowed DuBois the space he needed to cross the finish line first, but was eventually disqualified in post race tech, handing the win to Hartman, who crossed the line in second. Raymundo Lopez was credited with second and Kristen Denman third.

The S&J Automotive USRA Stock Cars were up next with Sherman Barnett leading the field to the green flag at the start of the 20-lap feature event. Sherman jumped from the pole to the lead as the pack entered turn number one, but outside front row starter Kenny McCoy took over on the high side and raced into the top spot as the field thundered down the backstretch. McCoy began to stretch his lead over the field, while Jonathan Burton, Rob Moseley, Devon Jobin and Bryan Bennett worked their way into a great five car battle for the lead, with Burton able to sling by on the top to take command out front. Bennett and Moseley were in a spirited battle for second for the majority of the race, while Burton was able to race off to his first win of the season. Bennett was able to hold off Moseley for second at the checkered.

Dawson Manicki raced to his second Johnstone Supply Super Truck feature win of the season after a very spirited battle with 14th starting Christy Barnett over the closing circuits of the 20-lap feature event. Manicki, who started 5th, got the lead relatively early in the race and paced the field out front, while Barnett and 13th starting Devan Smith were working their way from the 7th row toward the front of the field. Luis Esquivel also appeared in the top five as the race reached the mid-point and a five-truck battle ensured with Sherman Barnett in the mix as well. Once Christy Barnett cleared traffic, she put her #44 on the cushion and charged alongside Manicki for the top spot and the duo ran side by side for five or six laps with Barnett edging into the lead on multiple occasions, but the caution would come out each time, negating the pass and restoring Manicki to the lead. Dawson was able to hold Barnett off during a green-white-checkered finish to pick up his second win of the season. Christy beat Sherman to the line for second as well.

The best race of the night was the Rancho Milagro USRA Modified feature event which saw Carlos Ahumada Jr. race from his 6th starting spot to pick up his first win of the 2022 season after a thrilling race-long battle within the top five. Jimmy Ray and Terry Tipton kicked off action early with a side-by-side battle for the lead with Fito Gallardo in tow. Once Fito got to second be began to pressure Tipton for the lead until he lost the handle of his #G17 and spun, bringing out the caution. On the restart, Ahumada Jr. blasted by Tipton to lead and kept his #65x glued to the bottom of the speedway, while Tipton blasted the cushion using the momentum to keep pace with Ahumada out front. The two raced hard for the lead, while Ray, Royal Jones and Donavon Flores were in a great battle for third just behind the leaders as well. As the laps wound down, a two-lap shootout would set the stage for Ahumada Jr’s first win of 2022 as he held off Tipton to the checkered. Gallardo would rally from the tail to steal third over the final laps to complete the podium as well.

The final event of the night was the Anthony Sosa Roofing Late Model feature and the largest field ever assembled for a regular show was set to do battle for 20-laps. Brandon Cruse had his #151 on the pole and jumped to the lead early until outside front row starter Javier Zapien Jr. raced by on the outside and took the top spot. Zapien quickly stretched his advantage out front while Eric McNutt and Ronnie Leathem Jr. began to pressure Cruse for second. All the while, 16th starting Mercedes Abercrombie was blasting through the field and appeared in the top five around the mid-point of the race and wasn’t done there. With Zapien continuing to lead around the bottom, Abercrombie found speed on the cushion and raced into second and then dispatched of Zapien to take the lead, which she held to the checkered, only to decide not to go to the tech area, forfeiting her win and sending Zapien to victory lane. McNutt would finish second with Xavier Ortega third after rallying from the tail after a mid-race spin.

Full results: https://vadospeedwaypark.com/results/results.asp?NewsID=80875

The Vado Speedway Park will be back in action this coming Saturday night, April 30th with another Hot City Nights event where residents of Las Cruces will be admitted into the grandstand area for just $5 with a valid id. Gates open at 5 and racing begins at 7:30.

For fans not able to attend in person, all events held during the 2022 season at the Vado Speedway Park will also be live streamed online by PayPerView at www.WatchFYE.tv.

For upcoming schedule information and tickets, visit www.VadoSpeedwayPark.com.