MARYSVILLE, CALIFORNIA (October 23, 2023) – Bakersfield’s Nicholas Johnson earned his third victory of the inaugural West Coast Hobby Stock Tour season on Saturday night, winning the Taxi Cab Open at Marysville Raceway to claim the 2023 series championship. Johnson won $1000 by leading a field of 37 Hobby Stocks during the night filled with stock car competition.
Paul Newman in the No. 23P, incoming points leader Brian Cooper of Yuba City in the No. 17C, the No. 00 of Jerry Bartlett, and Marysville’s James Foster in the No. 13F split the four eight lap heat races.
A 15-lap B-Main was held with Paul Stephens of Orland picking up the win over transfers Bobby Motts, Devin Koranda, Adriane Frost, Brian Horn, and Robert Arruda. Championship contender Rob Gallaher was unable to transfer out of the B-Main after an incident.
Antioch’s Ken Johns jumped ahead of the field at the start of the 20-lap feature. A brief caution flag for cars spinning in turn one stopped the action. On the restart, Cooper faltered exiting turn four. A melee ensued which gobbled up eight competitors. Newman, Cooper, Phillip Shelby of Yuba City, and Arruda were unable to continue.
Nicholas Johnson, 2023 Ocean Speedway champion Joe Gallaher, and Stephen Johnson raced for the second position. Nicholas Johnson seized second on lap five while Gallaher began to drift backwards through the field.
Johnson steadily ran down Johns, approaching Johns as they navigated lapped traffic. Johnson slid by past Johns in turn one to lead lap 14. Motts spun down the backstretch into the tractor tires surrounding the light poles to bring out the final caution of the night.
Johns dove underneath Johnson on several occasions to try to retake the lead in turn four. Johnson held strong, topping Johns at the line for the coveted third victory of the year and the 2023 championship. Johns finished second followed by Stephen Johnson. Jerry Bartlett concluded his full-time racing career with an outstanding fourth place finish. 2023 Marysville third in points Kyle Cheney advanced to fifth at the checkered flag.
The West Coast Hobby Stock Tour final top-five in the standings were Johnson, Cooper, Stephen Johnson, Joe Gallaher, and Rob Gallaher. 55 drivers earned points during the five points races in the inaugural season. The tour thanks all the tracks, competitors, sponsors, and race fans for a tremendous year full of racing action!
Nicholas Johnson also earned the Quick Time award and $100 from Competition Carbs and $50 and a trophy from the tour. Robert Aruda would pick up the Hard Charger cash and trophy.
The West Coast Hobby Stock Tour would like to thank all of their sponsors who made the series possible including Speed Union TV, Jay’s Mobile Welding and Fabrication, Custom Scaled Creations, Valley Pump, Mac Tools, R&J Landscaping, All Spec Sheet Metal, 1 Hour Drain, Garth Moore Insurance Services, Mack’s Auto Body, Winning Attitude Motorsports, Cooper Racing, Performance Auto Supply, E Street MX Park, One2 Designs, Reische Racing, Ryland Racing, Mancave Steel Solutions, and Performance Muffler and Brake.