FONDA - Matt DeLorenzo has struggled to find the handle on the new Teo chassis he started the season with at Fonda Speedway. So he turned to his old faithful, and it paid off.
DeLorenzo led every green flag lap of the 30-lap modified feature, holding off a last-lap charge by Stewart Friesen to record his first win of the season at the Track of Champions.
"This is my '07, the one I won all the features with," DeLorenzo said in Victory Lane. "I had one built just like it and we had a second and a third with it, then I got wrecked. I tried to run it a couple weeks after that, but didn't realize how bent it really was. We went back to old faithful here. Stewie has been real fast and we have been off our baseline of what we have been doing and have been searching. This car is definitely a lot better."
Matt DeLorenzo, right, races with Alton Palmer (76) during modified action Saturday at Fonda Speedway. (The Leader-Herald/James A. Ellis)
Joining DeLorenzo with victories Saturday night were Rocky Warner (602 sportsman), Kenny Gates (pro stock) and Dave Horning Sr. (street stock). Dave McCumber won the added feature for the ACOT sprint cars.
The modified main event got off to a slow start as Bobby Varin stopped in turn two to bring out the caution before a lap could be completed.
The second attempt to get the race under way also was not successful as the front row of Alton Palmer and Ray Sitterly Jr. touched, sending Sitterly into the wall and breaking the front end on Palmer's car.
With the new front row of Vinnie Sangenetti and DeLorenzo, the race moved forward with DeLorenzo breaking away with Craig Hanson and Mark Kislowski second and third.
By lap four, Danny Varin moved up to make it a three-way race for second with Friesen lurking in fifth.
Varin and Friesen found a way around Kislowski on lap 11 but were a full straightaway behind DeLorenzo.
Lapped traffic held the leader up enough that Friesen turned DeLorenzo's six-second lead into less than a car length, then the caution flew when Danny Varin came to a stop in turn four with 16 laps in the book.
The caution brought a couple of new contenders into contention for the lead. Last week's winner, Ronnie Johnson, found his way into third with Kislowski hold fourth over last week's runner-up, Josh Hohenforst.
The complexion of the top five changed again on lap 21 when Johnson slowed with mechanical trouble and Bobby Varin, who had worked his way back into the top six, slowed on the backstretch before coming to a stop.
When the green dropped on lap 22, DeLorenzo pulled away to a five-car length advantage over Friesen and Hohenforst moved past Kislowski to take over third and Hanson moved up to fifth.
Friesen made a strong move off turn two on the final lap to close the gap on DeLorenzo. He drove deep into turn three and got up to DeLorenzo on the short chute but DeLorenzo had enough to turn back the challenge and record his 32 career modified feature in
Friesen was second followed by Hohenforst, Kislowski and Elmo Reckner. Hanson, Jeremy Wilder, Sangenetti, Darwin Greene and Justin Boehler completed the top 10.
After going under the caution on the initial start of the 20-lap 602 sportsman feature the race ran caution free. Justin Auspelmyer set the pace while a four-car battle for the runner-up spot waged well behind him.
Brian Pesselano, Warner, Jeff Rockefeller and John Scarborough diced it out, often changing positions on a lap-to-lap basis, until Warner dove between Pesselano and Rockefeller in turn three and came away with the runner-up spot with five laps remaining.
Warner quickly erased Auspelmyer's half-straightaway advantage and took the point in turn four on lap 18.
Warner held off Auspelmyer for his second feature win of the season. Auspelmyer was second followed by Rockefeller, Pesselano and Scarborough.
In the 20-lap pro stock feature, Pete Broderson set the early pace with Gates, Justin Knight, Luke Horning and Kenny Martin chasing him.
The lone caution of the race came on lap four when Andy Graves made contact with the front stretch wall.
Three laps later Gates powered past Broderson to take the lead with Horning staying within striking distance in third.
Gates and Broderson put distance between themselves and Horning to settle it between them over the final five laps.
Broderson made a strong bid for the lead when Gates was trapped behind the lapped car of Pete VanNoordt with two laps remaining. Gates broke free in time to maintain the lead and record his second win of the season and 48th of his career.
After starting deep in the pack, Dave Horning Sr. moved through the field to take the lead from Chuck McSpirit on lap five and never looked back as he recorded his sixth victory of the season and 36th career street stock victory.
Reuben Kennedy got up for second with McSpirit third, Greg Havlicek fourth and Rob VanAernam fifth.
Racing returns to the speedway next Saturday night with the pro stocks taking center stage for the seventh annual Hondo Classic.