Alan Sharpensteen wins modifieds and maintain lead atop Route 66 standings

Date:

Share post:

Amarillo’s Michael Johnson rolled to a second place finish in the street stocks class Saturday night at Route 66 Speedway. [Ben Jenkins/ Press Pass Sports]
Saturday night at Route 66 Speedway seemed to mark a halftime in the season’s weekly action at the track, as only two of the track’s six classes were in action and a touring sprint car class was billed as the main event.

But Amarillo’s Alan Sharpensteen wasn’t interested in taking inventory, much less a schedule break.

Sharpensteen entered the evening as the season points leader in the modified class, where he sat in the middle of the pack heading into the feature race after the heats. At the end of the evening, Sharpensteen not only still held the points lead, but had another individual victory at Route 66.

After Danton Odell held the early lead from the pole position, Sharpensteen took advantage of a midrace caution after working his way near the front of the pack. With eight laps to go in the 20-lap race, Sharpensteen roared past Odell and took a lead he never relinquished in rolling to a comfortable victory.

That tightened Sharpensteen’s lead in the modified points standings, as he now has 227 points, 20 points ahead of second-place Ethan Crawford.

“I grew up in a way that you really never race for points, you just race for the win,” Sharpensteen said. “If we can get it, we can get it. All racing is points racing so we just race hard all the time.”

For about the first eight laps, it was a two-man race between Odell and Dee Gossett who were first and second respectively. But Gossett had mechanical difficulties and exited the track on the backstretch to leave Odell seemingly unchallenged for the lead.

Shortly after that, a wreck brought on a caution. That proved to give Sharpensteen a chance to try out some new strategy after the restart.

“On the caution flag let me figure out I could roll in just a little bit higher and that I could roll into (turns) one and two way faster than they were,” Sharpensteen said. “(Odell) was way better in three and four so I was just maintaining down there. I could pass him on one and two because he was going in way too high. I figured that out and I think that got him rattled.”

It was literally a different race after that. If Odell, who finished second, didn’t appear to have a chance to pass Sharpensteen in the final laps, the rest of the field surely didn’t.

Sharpensteen has left his mark on the modifieds this season after several years racing in them. He would appear to be the man to beat over the final nine races of the season at Route 66.

“I never really have tried to win (a points title) but I’m going to try it this year,” Sharpensteen said. “We have a pretty good lead at this point so we’ll just see how it goes.”

Prior to the modifieds, the track hosted the G.W. Elkins Memorial Lucas Oil Elite Non Wing Sprint Cars event which is part of the American Sprint Car Series touring schedule and comes to Amarillo every year.

The class showed again why it’s perhaps the most anticipated touring event at Route 66 each year. In a thrilling finish, young Caden McCreary of Terrell held off Jason Howell of Fort Worth to take the checkered flag, winning by about half a car length.

In the other feature event, Amarillo’s Josh Barnette won the street stocks for his first victory of the season. This will be the last race at Route 66 until July 9, since next Saturday it will be closed for the July 4th weekend.

 

Local Sponsor

Related articles

2022 Fall Camp – Canadian Wildcats – Coach Chris Koetting

Canadian head coach, Chris Koetting, is excited about his Wildcats beginning the 2022 football season.

Panhandle’s Dane Ashley and Landyn Hack share unbreakable bond

Panhandle quarterback Landyn Hack and head coach Dane Ashley share a special father-son relationship on and off the field.

2022 Fall Camp – Tascosa Rebels – Coach Ken Plunk

Tascosa head coach, Ken Plunk, is excited about his Rebels beginning the 2022 football season.

2022 Texas Panhandle scrimmage schedule

High School football scrimmages open up Thursday through Saturday for Texas Panhandle teams.