Afton Motorsports Park Shines Hosting “The Working Man’s Race” – DTD Exclusive

By DON SIMPSON

This past weekend Afton Motorsports Park hosted the 12th edition of The Working Man’s Race, which by all accounts, was a fantastic event.

With Super DIRT Week going on at the “big-track,” It was a pleasant alternative to see some hard door-to door racing on a small 3/10th-mile oval.

The track located on the outskirts of the town of Afton, at the Afton Fairgrounds, was formed back in 1857 and is just 132 kilometers from Syracuse.

With 54 Modified’s attending the event, this sleepy town came alive with some of the best short track racing in the country, giving fans no shortage of action.



Going into the event Matt Sheppard had a slight lead in points over second-place runner Stewart Friesen, but the North Region was still very much up for grabs.

Sheppard held a lead of three points over Friesen along with a 17 point lead over Andy Bachetti, a 41 point over Mat Williamson and finally 45 points lead over Mike Gular.

As luck would have it, Friesen was delayed racing at Talladega earlier that day, while Williamson was held back at Oswego racing in the 358 race at Super DIRT Week, which was rain delayed.

This left Andy Bachetti and Mike Gular the only two that had any chance of challenging for the Short Track Super Series North Region points.

It came down to 50 laps to determine who would be the notable winner of the 2019 edition of the Short Track Supernationals.

From the start, a side-by-side battle insured between pole-sitter Bobby Varin and Sheppard.

Varin, who kept the inside lane, forced Sheppard to the outside making difficult for the points leader to pass.

While the battle for the lead was on going, Duane Howard, Bachetti and Gular were making there way through the pack to challenge the two front-runners.

Finally, on lap 22, Sheppard drove around Varin to take the lead, going on to capture the win along with $5,500.00 in prize money.

Varin, finished second with Howard coming in a close third.

This win brings Sheppard one-step closer to his goal of winning this year’s Championship along with $57,500 in prize money.

In the other portions of that night’s race, the schedule saw several great racers visit victory lane that night.

In the American Racers Cup One-on-One Match Race, Jimmy Wells came out victorious.

Tim Hartman Jr won the 25-lap STSS Crate 602 Sportsman North Region finale.

Doug Polhamus Won the street stock class

John Kuleseo and Brian Moore won there feature in the Mohawk Valley Vintage Dirt Modified divisions.

In Friday nights portion of the event, Alysha Bay won the 25-lap CRSA Sprint Car Feature. Scott Neary won the 20 lap Slingshot Feature. Tim Hartman Jr., won the Sportsman feature. In the Sportsman match races, Steve Davis came home the winner and finally Danny Bouc won the Modified dash.

The Short Track Supernationals was definitely a pleasant change from Super DIRT Week and well worth the drive through the rolling hills of New York State. The Afton Motorsports Park team put on a spectacular show on the historic fairgrounds, thrilling the capacity crowd with some of the best racing of the season — a nice way to cap off the year.