Woodinville, Washington’s Wanat Wants All-Star Showdown Winadmin
The 2018 NASCAR Advanced Auto Parts Weekly Racing Series, State of Washington Champion Doni Wanat has entered the “Sunrise Ford All-Star Showdown presented by the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame” at Irwindale Speedway. The opener for the Spears Srl Southwest Tour Series will take place on February 6th and will pay $30,000 to the winner of the 200-lap event. It is an event that Wanat would love to win in his Irwindale Speedway debut.
The Woodinville, WA driver will be making his second SPEARS Southwest Tour Series start after, participating in a championship event at Kern County Raceway in 2016. He finished 13th in that event and will now look to make his first career start at Irwindale Speedway. The rationale for the effort was two-fold, but getting behind the wheel again, at a new and remarkable facility, was a temptation too much to resist.
“Probably the biggest reason for us wanting to come race Irwindale, is we didn’t get much racing in this year”, Wanat explained. “We only raced three times. Since my second season in racing, I have heard a lot of great things about Irwindale and have always wanted to make the trip.”
Wanat will bring a wealth of experience to Irwindale, after scoring his first Super Late Model victory at Evergreen Speedway in 2015. He finished second in the NASCAR regional standings that season and has continued to add to his win totals over the years. In 2018, Wanat scored the Budweiser Crown Series Championship at Evergreen Speedway after scoring a win in the five-event schedule. He has two victories in the Northwest Super Late Model Series, and finished third in the championship standings in 2015, despite missing an event. He likewise won his only start in the West Coast Late Model Series, that event was at Yakima Speedway in 2017.
Wanat also has experience in some of the biggest Super Late Model events on the West Coast. Wanat has two visits to the SRL’s Winter Showdown at Kern County Raceway, qualifying into both. His best finish was a 14th in 2019. He has eight Summer Showdown starts at Evergreen Speedway, earning two top-10 finishes, including a best of sixth. Just last September, Wanat finished second in the 30-car field at the Wenatchee Valley Super-Oval in the “Neal Newberry 125”, the season finale for the Northwest Super Late Model Series.
Wanat is now ready for another challenge, as he finally gets to head to Irwindale Speedway for the first time. From his observations, the track will race differently than the facilities he is used to. That will be one of the biggest challenges for the veteran racer.
“From watching some races on TV, or on-line, it looks like the track can develop a couple of grooves, which is great for racing”, Wanat speculated. “It will take some learning to run the top. Most tracks we consistently compete at we run the bottom in corners, and then up to the wall on the straightaways. Our goal for the weekend is to have the car unload close on setup. This way I should be able to learn the track and get faster throughout the weekend.”
Wanat knows the new facility, as well as the tough competition, will be a big challenge for he and his team. The driver and team are looking forward to that challenge, however, and happy to be able to make the 18-hour trip south. He is thankful for those who have made the trip possible.
I would like to thank Pathfinder Chassis, McGunegill Engine Performance and obviously my crew for their sacrifices and dedication”, Wanat expressed. “I also want to thank Larry Collins and the staff of the SRL, as well as Tim Huddleston, the Irwindale Speedway staff, Bob Bruncati with Sunrise Ford, and all of the sponsors that came together to put on an event of this size.”
With the help of Bob Bruncati and the West Coast Stock Car Hall of Fame, the 2021 “Sunrise Ford All-Star Showdown 200” will pay $30,000 to the winner of the 200-lap feature event at Irwindale Speedway. The Spears Pro Late Models presented by Sigma Performance Services, as well as the Spears Modified Series will join the action, racing for $15,000 and $5,000, respectively. An optional Test Day is slated for Thursday, with the official Practice Day getting underway on Friday.
Saturday will see the Super Late Models practice from 11:45 AM to 12:30 PM, with Qualifying for all divisions beginning at 2:30 PM. The Modifieds will go first followed by the Pro Late Models and Super Late Models. Opening Ceremonies are slated for 4:30 PM, with “B”-Main Events set for 5:00 PM. The “Pro Late Model Showdown 150”, “Modified All-Star Showdown 100”, and the “Sunrise Ford All-Star Showdown 200” will follow. The Modifieds and Pro Late Models are scheduled for the inner 1/3-mile oval, while the SPEARS SRL Southwest Tour Series will see action on the ½-mile.
For those unable to attend, the event will be shown live at www.SpearsRacing.TV and on a delayed basis on MAVTV.
Celebrating its twenty-first season in 2021, the SPEARS Southwest Tour Series is a regional stock car series competing on paved ovals in the southwestern portion of the U.S. “The SPEARS Southwest Tour Series…Where the Champions Race”.