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Wofford and Saiz Split Zia Classic Opening Night Sprint Car Victories

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November 4, 2022

Austin Hood Photography

Austin Hood Photography

Vado Speedway Park kicked off its final weekend of the season on Friday, November 4th with the running of the first night of the inaugural Zia Sprint Car Classic, which featured Winged Sprints, Non-Winged Sprints, Legends, Pure Stocks and the annual Stock Car / Super Truck Challenge. Wes Wofford and Caleb Saiz won their respective Sprint Car mains to open the 2-day event, with Michael Hartman victorious in the Pure Stocks; Dusty Riggs topping the Legends and Josh Cain winning the Stock Car vs. Super Truck Challenge main event.  

The S.H. Automotive Pure Stock main event was on track first for their 20-lap event and multi time winner Michael Hartman sat on the front row and quickly jumped into the lead at the drop of the green. A few cautions, the most notably for track point leader Jeremy DuBois who cut a left rear tire, kept the field close in the early stages of the event, but after a restart, Hartman was able to drive back off into the night, lapping up to the sixth-place car on his way to a dominating victory. Diego Alvarado and Sherrii Minks waged a race long war for the second spot, which Alvarado was able to secure in the late stages of the event. Minks ran third with Chris Dominguez racing from 12th to 4th and DuBois rallying from the tail to complete the top five and hold the track point lead heading into the final points night of the season on Saturday night. 

The Hulsey Racing Legend Cars were up next an allstar front row consisting of Josh Jackson and Dusty Riggs leading the field to green. Riggs got the lead at the start and never looked back on his way to the victory, but it was one of the most hard-fought wins of the season as Dave Smith pressured Riggs out front the entire 20-lap distance as the race ran non-stop from green to checkered. With Riggs out front and Smith in second, young Cale Riggs got by Zach Rodriguez and Jackson for third mid race and moved in on the battle for the lead, making it a three-car race up front. Dusty hit his marks lap after lap while Cale tried feverishly to steal second from Smith to see if he could contend with his dad for the win. Dusty remained poised out front and raced to the victory as Smith was able to hold off Cale for second at the line. Rodriguez held strong for fourth holding the point lead into the final night and Jackson rounded out the top five finishers.  

Caleb Stelzig and Caleb Saiz earned the front row for the night’s 25-lap POWRi Non-Winged Sprint Car feature event with Saiz gaining the upper hand on the start and jumping out into the lead. The field was slowed and stopped as Stelzig got over the cushion in turn one on the opening lap and got upside down, ending his night very early. Saiz set back off out front once the race resumed and paced the field for the entire distance but not without heavy pressure at times from Dustin Cormany. As Saiz lead out front, the battle for second between Cormany, Rick Ziehl and Don Grable was outstanding as the trio swapped sliders lap after lap trying to get to the runner up spot. Saiz raced to the win with Grable winning the battle for second, just ahead of Ziehl, 19th starting Colt Treharn and Michael Fanelli, who crossed the finish line in fifth.   

Josh Cain and Fito Gallardo sat on the front row for the Stock Car vs. Super Truck Challenge feature event and Cain had one thing on his mind – redemption from the Fall Nationals two weeks ago. Josh outran Fito into the first set of turns and took command and never looked back on his way to the wire-to-wire victory and to earn bragging rights for the Stock Cars on night #1 of the weekend. Jake Gallardo charged up into the second spot ahead of Rob Moseley and tried his best to run down Cain out front, but came up just a car length short in a thrilling finish as Cain was trying to work through lapped traffic, which slowed his pace a bit. Gallardo charged up to his inside on the final lap, but Cain was able to hold on for the win. Jake ran second with Moseley third, just ahead of Bryan Bennett and Josh Reynolds, who raced to fourth and fifth place finishes respectively.  

The Sunset Grill 305 Winged Sprint Car feature was the final race of the night and their 25-lapper was entertaining as well with Wes Wofford taking command from the pole and leading the majority of the way, but Caleb Saiz, who started in the third row, powered his way to second early and threw several sliders as Wofford out front but Wes was able to cross him over lap after lap in what turned out to be a great battle out front. Wofford withstood Saiz and raced to the entertaining victory with Saiz second, just ahead of Dylan Harris, Lorne Wofford and Jesse Baker, who rounded out the top five.   

Results 

The Vado Speedway Park will wrap up the 2022 calendar with 8 big nights during the second annual Christmas Village, which will feature holiday lights, holiday displays, inflatables, Christmas Shoppes, visits from Santa, Buddy the Elf, Elsa and Grinch, plus campfires, holiday music and more. Event dates are December 2nd, 3rd, 9th, 10th, 16th, 17th, 22nd and 23rd from 6p-10p. 

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.