Championship Leader Giannini Gets October Classic Winadmin
Championship Leader Giannini Gets October Classic Win After Disqualification
Bakersfield, CA – In a surprising turn of events, Spears Modified Series championship leader Jaron Giannini was declared the winner of the “Visit Bakersfield 60” at Kern County Raceway Park Saturday night, after both first and third place finishers Travis Thirkettle and Andrew Anderson failed post-race inspection on “October Classic” weekend. Giannini led a majority of the first half of the event, before Thirkettle grabbed the lead after a lap 42 Competition Caution. He crossed the finish line second, but was awarded the $2,000 victory after post-race inspection.
The trio of Thirkettle, Giannini, and Anderson dominated the speed charts over the weekend with Thirkettle earning the PFC Brakes “Zero Drag Fast Time Award” with a lap of 19.394 seconds. Anderson, Giannini, Chris Dalton, and Jimmy Sloan rounded out the top-five. The redraw found Holly Clark on the pole with Chris Dalton alongside. Giannini and Anderson made up row two with Jimmy Sloan and William Guevara in row three. Travis Thirkettle and Kevin Vossen rounded out the redraw participants.
Clark got a good start at the green, but Dalton battled back and took the lead down the backstretch, with Anderson following to second. The first yellow flew on lap three, when Jimmy Sloan went up in a cloud of smoke. Dalton chose the outside line and moved back to the lead on the restart. Anderson and Giannini both pressured Dalton, with Anderson down low and Giannini up high, with Thirkettle joining the party. On lap seven, Giannini was able to get to the outside of Dalton to take the lead. Two laps later, Thirkettle got by on the inside and Anderson moved to Dalton’s bumper, pressuring the Bakersfield driver over the next 20 laps for third.
It took Thirkettle 18 laps to get to the back bumper of Giannini, but the five-time 2022 winner could not make the pass, as Giannini pulled out to a one second lead. Lap 27 saw Anderson finally getting by Dalton as the field ran clean and green. When the Competition Caution flag flew, after a 40-lap green-flag run, Giannini led Thirkettle, Anderson, William Guevara, and a fading Dalton.
The restart found Giannini choosing the inside line with Thirkettle taking advantage, storming to the lead. Anderson remained third ahead of Guevara, but the yellow flew again on lap 48 for Holly Clark, who was pressuring Dalton for fifth. Kevin Vossen couldn’t avoid the spinning Clark and had to retire for the day with damage. The final restart saw Thirkettle back to the lead, as Giannini tried to stay with the veteran racer. Anderson and Guevara battled for third, but Anderson was able to hold off the series ironman.
When the checkered flew on lap 60, Thirkettle crossed the line first with Giannini following. Anderson was third followed by Guevara, Dalton, a recovering Clark, and Anthony Barket. But in post-race tech, Thirkettle and Anderson were disqualified giving the win to Jaron Giannini. Guevara moved up to a career best second with Dalton, Clark and Barket the top-five.
The next event for the Spears Modified Series will be the season finale at Irwindale Speedway on November 12th.
Results: 1. Jaron Giannini*, 2. William Guevara, 3. Chris Dalton*, 4. Holly Clark*, 5. Anthony Barket, 6. Adam Coonfield, 7. Aaron Coonfield, 8. AJ DiMarzo. 9. Ray Mros*, 10. Kevin Vossen*, 11. Eddie Secord, 12. Jimmy Sloan, DQ. Travis Thirkettle, DQ. Andrew Anderson, DNS. Ed Coffey
*Spears Modified Series Rookie of the Year Contendor