For the second time this season, Chico’s Richard Papenhausen pillaged Antioch Speedway, taking both the Late Model Stock Car and International Motor Contest Association (IMCA) Modified Stock Car feature events after fighting off challenges from Antioch’s top drivers.
“It was a good night – all the way through,” smiled Papenhausen.
It was Shawn DeForest of Livermore who led the non-stop Late Model event most of the way. With eight laps to go, Papenhausen caught up to him in traffic.
“We were lapping a car and Richard (Papenhausen) made his move,” said DeForest. “The track was so fast and so smooth, racing was clean and fast. Once he sneaked by, he got away from us.”
Papenhausen was the story of the night, but track champ Troy Foulger of Martinez was the story of the IMCA Modified division, as he came from the back twice to chase down Pappenhausen.
Foulger started 15th in the feature, and worked his way up to sixth only to be collected in a wreck. He returned to the rear of the field, working his way to Papenhausen’s back bumper by the end of the main event.
“I had to use everything I had to get back up there,” Foulger said. “I overheated my tires and had nothing left for Richard (Papenhausen) by the end of the race.”
What was Papenhausen’s secret to success?
“We watch the track and then we set up the car for what we think the track will be at the end of the race,” he explained. “We use the same basic set-up every time and just make fine adjustments. We want to have the best car at the end of the race – but tonight we had the best cars all the way through the races.”
Papenhausen also praised the track conditions.
“Antioch Speedway is a little bull ring – I love running at the track, especially when it is in such good condition,” he added.
In the IMCA SportMod main event, Megan Ponciano of Oakley brought home her third checkered flag of the season. She battled Jeremy Hoff, the current points leader in the division, to the finish. They rubbed on a green-white-checkered flag restart, with Hoff spinning back to third. Paul Mulder of San Jose grabbed second.
“The first thing I did was apologize to him (Hoff),” Ponciano said. “It’s one of those things that happen in racing.”
Ponciano trails Hoff by eight points in the championship battle. The final race for the championship is Sept.14.
“I’m looking forward to it,” Ponciano said. “We struggled all season, and now we have the car handling correctly.”
She thanked Oakley neighbor Billy Bowers, who owns the IMCA modified that Troy Foulger drives, for giving her advice that paid off with another win.
Colton Slack of Brentwood topped Gary Nelson, Jr. of San Jose in the All Star Wingless Sprint Car main event. Jim Freethy of Danville was victorious in the Super Stock feature. David Rosa of Antioch topped Jimmy Robbins of Concord in the Super Hobby Stock division feature.
In the front wheel drive “Four Banger” division, Ken Radabaugh of Antioch topped hometown rival Tyler Applebaum. Danny Aves was first in the rear wheel drive four-cylinder division, with Ryan Deforest of Livermore doing what his dad did in the late models – taking home a second place finish.
Antioch Speedway returns to action on Sunday, Sept. 8, with the second and final visit of the World of Outlaws Sprint cars to the Bay Area. Tickets are available on the World of Outlaws Sprint Car website: woosprint.com.