Speed Tour Title Goes to Tie Breakers for Tillman, Warfadmin
The closest point battle of the season was settled at Meridian Speedway Saturday, October 17, as the Speed Tour Sprint Cars went to tiebreakers to determine their season champion. The Pit Stop USA NASCAR Division I Modifieds, Coors Super Stocks, and Firehouse Pub and Grill Bombers also wrapped up their seasons, while the Teleperformance Street Stocks and Big Daddy’s Barbecue Hornets crowded the quarter-mile asphalt oval in a bid for crucial late-season victories.
Entering the Speed Tour Sprint Car championship night, first-year winged sprint car racer Casey Tillman led multi-time open-wheel champ Bryan Warf by a single point. This lead lasted until qualifying, where Warf bested Tillman for quick-time and leveled the playing field heading into heat races.
But Tillman struck back, winning his heat while Warf could only muster a third place run after avoiding an early crash on the back stretch. This left Tillman ahead by three markers as the pair rumbled side-by-side into the night’s 35-lap feature.
The green flag waved and outside polesitter Cory Lockwood blasted past Elko, Nevada’s Bob Massie to take the early lead. This brought the high line of Colton Nelson, Warf, and Tillman forward.
Tillman worked to put his Ready Made Plastic Trays, PFC Brakes sprinter outside of Warf early, but Warf battled back on the inside to keep his Knapp Auto, Magic Valley Estate Sales machine in front of his title foe. As they ran, Warf had gained two passing points on Tillman, and one position point to again draw even in the standings.
Lapped traffic allowed Warf some breathing room over Tillman at the race’s halfway point, but Boise, Idaho’s Tillman wouldn’t stay back for long. As Warf and Tillman pushed their racers hard, Nelson’s Miller Lite, Boise Bath and Kitchen Company entry began to slow with apparent mechanical issues.
This put Warf second and Tillman third behind 2020 Meridian Speedway dominator Lockwood and his Turning Point Brands, Stinker Stores sprinter. Tillman launched one final attack on Warf as the laps wound down, but Warf held off the charge and came home second on the Pepsi-Cola scoreboard.
With the standings tied once again, the Speed Tour officials went to the rule book to determine potential tie breakers. The first tie breaker was average main event finish, a metric that also resulted in a tie. The second tie breaker was number of quick-times on the season, a measure which crowned Tillman the 2020 Speed Tour Sprint Car champion.
“I’ve got to thank everyone who has supported us throughout this journey,” Tillman said in the Caleb’s Chop Shop Winner’s Circle.
Alongside the Speed Tour Sprint Cars, the cast iron block Sportsman Sprint Cars took their final checkered flag of the season with Rob Taylor taking home the title in his Barn Burner Racing sprinter.
After a grueling nineteen race campaign, Brendon Fries emerged as the 2020 Pit Stop USA NASCAR Division 1 Modified champion. At the controls of his ICON Credit Union, Academy Mortgage modified, Fries scored the final main event victory of the season over Josh Jackson and Josh Fanopoulos.
Melissa Weaver outlasted Daytona Wurtz to score yet another Coors Super Stock championship in her Marv’s Tire Service, Graphics by Rhonda Kellerer racer. Despite only scoring three main event wins in 2020, Weaver’s consistency throughout the ten-race season carried her to the title.
Before he claimed the Sportsman Sprint Car title, Taylor strapped into his Firehouse Pub and Grill Bomber and cruised to the division’s 2020 title.
In the Teleperformance Street Stock ranks, Kyle Tellstrom piloted the Lee Hackney-owned YMC Inc., Mulder’s Auto Machine mount to both main event victories Saturday. Standings leader Josh Fanopoulos outpaced second-place point earner Taylor Occhipinti to all but lock up his second division championship as the pair race into next weekend’s Treasure Valley 100.
James Pahl led the Big Daddy’s Barbecue Hornet main event for about three feet Saturday on his way to an improbable win. The door opened for Pahl’s Vets4Success, Cloverdale Plumbing racer when leaders Morgan Trammel and Dale Bolinger tangled exiting the chicane.
“It sucks that they crashed, but I was pretty happy,” Pahl said as he collected his Feature Flag in the Caleb’s Chop Shop Winner’s Circle.
The Meridian Speedway season wraps up Saturday, October 24, with the annual Trunk or Treat and Haunted Haulers event. Join your favorite racers in the pit area from noon to 1:30 p.m. for free Trunk or Treat, then stick around for the Treasure Valley 100. Grandstand gates open at 2 p.m. Saturday, with races taking the green at 3 p.m. General admission tickets are just $12 for adults, $10 for seniors and military members, $7 for kids 7-11, and free for kids 6 and under. Full coverage of Saturday afternoon’s events will be available at SpeedCast.tv. We’ll see you this Saturday, October 24, for Trunk or Treat and Haunted Haulers and the Treasure Valley 100 under the big yellow water tower at your NASCAR Home Track, Meridian Speedway.