Story By: ERNIE SAXTON / INDOOR AUTO RACING CHAMPIONSHIP – ATLANTIC CITY, NJ – With two blockbuster events in the books, the 2020 Indoor Auto Racing Series fueled by VP heads to Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City on Friday and Saturday January 31st and February 1st for the 18th annual NAPA Auto Parts Classic.
Defending series champion Erick Rudolph of Ransomville, N.Y. won the opener held inside the PPL Center in Allentown, Pa. on Friday night January 3rd. Ryan Flores, a native of Brick, N.J. now living in Mooresville, N.C. won the TQ Midget feature event on Saturday night.
Rudolph, a three-time winner in Atlantic City, needs to rebound from a mechanic issues that took him out of Saturday’s Allentown event short of the finish if he wants to win his record fifth series championship.
Flores, the 2018 Atlantic City winner, had issues in the Friday night season opener in Allentown when he was involved in a multi-car crash at the start of the race and flipped over. His crew, however, made the proper repairs overnight and he drove that same car to victory less than 24 hours later.
Through consistency, Matt Janisch of Nazareth, Pa. enters the two-day Atlantic City NAPA event as the point leader of the BELFOR Property Restoration sponsored series. Janisch, a one time series winner in 2019 in Allentown, has a career goal of winning in Atlantic City and joining the elite drivers who have done so in the past.
Tickets are currently available in a range of different prices through Ticketmaster, the Boardwalk Hall Box Office or the Area Auto Racing News office at 609-888-3618 during regular working hours.
The wild and crazy Slingshots and darty Champ Karts will make up the tripleheader program as they have in the past.
Racing action begins on Friday at 7:30 p.m. with Saturday action getting the green flag at 7 p.m. Doors open at 6:30 on Friday night. On Saturday doors open at 5 p.m. with fans holding reserved tickets given the opportunity to attend Fan Fest on the speedway. All cars competing in the program will be positioned on the speedway and drivers made available for autographs until 6:30.
Last year’s Saturday night Gambler’s Classic was won for the first time by the very colorful Andy Jankowiak of Buffalo, N.Y. Andy J. passed Anthony Sesely of Matawan, N.J. for the lead, then held off Tim Buckwalter of Douglasville, Pa.
After a problem in one of Friday’s Four 20 lap features and his Saturday heat race in 2019, Rudolph took a provisional starting spot for the Gambler’s Classic. Rudolph then drove from a 25th starting spot to finish fifth.
Following the “Concrete Series” event in Atlantic City, a special non-point event will be held on a banked clay oval. The third annual East Coast Indoor Dirt Nationals will again be held at the CURE Insurance Arena in Trenton, N.J. on Friday and Saturday nights February 21st and 22nd featuring nearly 100 wingless 600cc Sprints.
The “Concrete Series” season finale follows on Friday and Saturday March 13th and 14th in a second year return to the brand new Expo Center located on the grounds of the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse. N.Y.