The State of Colorado has always had a passion for competitive sports, but most wouldn’t think to find it at a NASCAR Short Track at the base of the Rocky Mountains. Colorado National Speedway has been thrilling audiences with racing action since 1965, and the 2022 season demonstrated that passion extends to auto racing in a big way. With packed grandstands and car counts that most Home Tracks can only dream of, the CNS faithful enjoyed one of the best seasons in the books.
One of the brightest highlights of 2022 came with the 4th of July Sprint Car Show. On Saturday, July 2nd Aaron Williston took home the feature race win, and the following day, he went on to break the all-time fastest lap ever turned at Colorado National Speedway with a blistering time of 13.131 at 102.81mph, a record that stood for 15 years. For context, the current track record for a Super Late Model is 15.070 at 89.6mph set by Eddie Vecchiarelli on May 26, 2019. The lightning fast Sprint Cars will be back for the 4th of July weekend in 2023, so stay tuned for more details on that fantastic show!
Outlaw Figure 8's
For the first time ever, Colorado National Speedway played host to the Outlaw Figure 8’s on Saturday September 24th. Indianapolis, Indiana’s Eddie VanMeter Drove his #23 machine for a clean sweep on the night: grabbing quicktime, winning the fast dash, and led the final 14 laps on the way to winning the 50 lap feature event! The feature race also saw incredible action that left the sold out crowd in awe watching drivers narrowly miss each other in the center X. If you missed this incredible race, Lowbudget TV captured all the action from the night and you can Click Here to Watch. The Outlaw Figure 8’s will make their return to Colorado National Speedway in 2023. Click Here to view the schedule.
Challenge Cup XLVII:
Saturday, August 13th marked the 47th running of Challenge Cup, the biggest Super Late Model event of the year at CNS. The 2022 race was dominated by Jace Hansen. A total of 19 cars started this prestigious race looking to take home a $5,000 check from Mountain States Fire Protection, and Hansen picked up his first ever challenge cup victory in his torch red 08 machine; making him the 35th different winner in 47 Challenge Cup events. For the first time ever, CNS partnered with FloRacing who was on hand to live stream this event. Click Here to Watch.
Father's Day Super Sunday Monster Truck Show:
2022 marked the 11th anniversary of the fan favorite Father's Day Super Sunday Monster Truck Show which featured Monster Trucks, Demo X, Stunt Motorcycles & more. This incredible event continues to grow every year and preparations are already underway for the 2023 Father's Day Super Sunday Monster Truck Show. More details to come.
2022 also marked the return of Legend Invasion; this time as a 2-day event over the Labor Day Holiday weekend. On the first night of competition, over 40 drivers representing 7 states took to the 3/8 mile asphalt racetrack for a chance at taking home their share of a $35,000 weekend payout. Las Vegas, Nevada racer Tyler Reif came out guns blazing both Saturday and Sunday, sweeping both of the weekend’s 50 lap main events despite strong challenges from local competitors.
Halloween Trick or Treat Celebration
The Super Late Models & Figure 8’s were added to the final night racing, meaning fans were treated to an epic jam-packed night of championship racing featuring 8 divisions which included the Super Stocks/Pure Stocks, Legends, Bandoleros, Trains, Demo X & Drifters. Fans also took part in the annual trick or treat celebration on the front stretch with drivers prior to the racing action. This was one of the biggest Trick or Treat fan turnout we’ve had since starting this tradition and it’s a testament to all of you, our amazing race fans.
Battle of the Fenders VI
The 6th edition of the Battle of the Fenders 300 Lap Enduro Race took place a beautiful late November afternoon. 45 cars entered the event from all types of disciplines including Super Stock/Pure Stocks, Dirt Stock Cars, Hornets & Pick Up Trucks. The 300 lap race featured spectacular action and a very competitive race. In the end, Lee Kemmit was able to capture his 2nd Battle of the Fenders victory. The 7th edition of the event is scheduled for November 25th, 2023. Click Here for the Schedule.
As always, it is the weekly racing events that are the bread and butter of the CNS schedule and 2022 featured some amazing action with close points battles & fierce racing.
Mountain States Fire Protection Super Late Models:
Colorado National Speedway’s premier division, the Mountain States Fire Protection Super Late Models saw a first-time champion in Cody Dempster (#24). Dempster picked up 2 Wins throughout the season. The championship title fight came down to two drivers: Dempster (#24) & Nick Cooper (#05), who also had a strong season picking up two victories in only his sophomore year in the Super Late Models. This year saw a strong Rookie class with 2021 Pro Truck Rookie of the Year Zach Morris (#89) grabbing this year's Super Late Model ROTY honors. Morris nearly picked up his first SLM victory on the final night of racing until he ran into trouble and is definitely one to watch in the coming years. Other winners include: #08 Jace Hansen with 2 victories, Chris Eggleston (#22) & Bruce Yackey (#12).
Top 5 in Points:
24 Cody Dempster – 281
05 Nick Cooper – 267
32 Brett Yackey – 245
89 Zach Morris (R) – 232
12 Bruce Yackey – 212
Matco Tools Pro Trucks:
The 2022 Matco Tools Pro Truck season is one fans will be talking about for a long time. The points battle was extremely tight with 3 drivers separated by just 8 points for the championship heading into the final night of action on September 24th. Adam Deines (#7) grabbed 2 victories early in the season and led the points over defending Pro Truck Champion Brian Yackey (#22) and Curtis Heldenbrand (#9). During the final night of racing, Heldenbrand won the first feature event in dominating fashion, and charged from mid-pack in the 2nd feature to win the race and capture his first ever Pro Truck Championship in dramatic fashion. Rookie of the Year honors went to Chasen Groff (#90). Other drivers to visit victory lane included Michael Scott (#82) with 3 victories & Chris Eggleston (65E) with 1 victory.
Top 5 in Points:
9 Curtis Heldenbrad – 281
22 Brian Yackey – 278
7 Adam Deines – 277
50 Tyler Wiggans – 220
33 Tyler Davis – 212
Galitz Transportation Late Models:
The Galitz Transportation Late Models proved once again they are a very tough class to compete in. The 2022 season saw a first time champion as Dan Alamaa (#8) recorded four feature race wins and captured his first Late Model championship as well. However, despite being the season leader in wins, the Colorado Springs driver did not have it easy winning the championship. The final night of racing came down to 4 drivers in contention for the championship including Lee Kemmit (#98) who was very consistent all season, 2021 Late Model Track Champion Rick Smith (#31) who captured a victory early in the season & Michael Hannah (#15) with 2 victories who made his return to racing at CNS in 2022. Alamaa was able to capture the win in the first feature of championship night and finished 3rd in the second feature which was just barely enough to win the championship over Kemmit. Rookie of the Year Honors went to Matthew Hill (A51). Other winners include Tommy Roe (#6) who picked up 2 wins & Chad Cowen (#76) with 1 victory.
8 Dan Alamaa – 307
98 Lee Kemmit – 306
31 Rick Smith – 287
15 Michael Hannah – 257
6 Tommy Roe – 244
Sunoco Race Fuels Grand American Modifieds:
2022 saw a resurgence in the Sunoco Race Fuels Grand American Modified division, and with that, some hard nosed racing and tough competition among a growing field of competitors. Two drivers picked up their first ever victories in the class: brothers Jacob Smith (#89) & Jordan Smith (#99) each found victory lane for the first time. Heading into the final night on September 17th, four drivers were separated by just 21 points. Jacob Smith (#89) with 1 victory, Nathan Gasser (#24) with 2 victories, & Scotty Scott (#6) with 2 victories. When the dust settled, 2021 Rookie of the Year Kyle Clegg (#51) picked up his first championship in the Grand American Modifieds with three wins on the season, and a strong showing on Championship Night. Rookie of the Year Honors went to Scotty Scott (#6). Prior to the race on July 30th there were 6 different winners in 6 races.
Top 5 in Points:
51 Kyle Clegg – 339
24 Nathan Gasser – 328
89 Jacob Smith – 326
6 Scotty Scott (R) – 314
9 CJ Wilson - 275
Elite Diesel Service Figure 8’s:
The fan favorite Elite Diesel Service Figure 8’s put together a great season with a lot of close calls in the X as cars dodged each other & thrilled the fans week in and week out. Early on, Jared Wall (#52) had something to prove as he won the first 3 races of the season and looked to try to win his first ever figure 8 championship. Jereme Wall returned to competition mid season and picked up where he left off from the previous year also winning 3 in a row from July 3rd to August 13th. Two drivers were very consistent all season including bandolero graduate Travis Sanders (#08) & Harry Livermore Jr (#17) as they trailed Wall by 14 points heading into the final night of racing. During the finale, Wall & Livermore both had issues which allowed Sanders to barely grab his first ever figure 8 championship. Rookie of the Year Honors went to Sam Faus (#74). Other winners included Dennis Stepanich III (#18) with 1 win.
Top 5 in Points:
08 Travis Sanders – 348
52 Jared Wall – 330
17 Harry Livermore Jr – 319
97 Adam Gastineau – 283
18 Dennis Stepanich III - 282
PB&T Bank Super Stocks:
In 2022 the Super Stocks welcomed a brand new divisional sponsor Pueblo Bank & Trust, and the Super Stock season did not disappoint. The season started out with a fantastic battle between Chris Cox (#49) & Troy Witthar (1NE); little did fans know this battle would continue throughout the entire season. Cox missed a race in the earlier part of the season and once July came he went on to win 3 races in a row. Witthar had yet to find victory lane, however was very consistent finishing Top 10 in all 7 races competed in thus far. As they entered the final night, 1 point separated the two drivers, much like the first night the two battled for the lead lap after lap, thrilling fans. In the end Chris Cox would go back to back as the Super Stock Champion. Rookie of the Year Honors went to Kyle Stidham (#97) who finished 4th in the final night of racing. Other winners include: Brett Yackey (32Y) with 1 win, Jordan Abeyta (#23) with 1 win & Brent Cave (#9) with 1 win.
Top 5 in Points:
49 Chris Cox – 280
1NE Troy Witthar – 275
23 Jordan Abeyta – 249
9 Brent Cave – 235
11W Scott Long - 214
Rock N’ Roll Brewery Pure Stocks:
The Rock N’ Roll Brewery Pure Stocks proved once again why they are a great starting place for up & coming racers. The season kicked off with Christopher Galvin (41G) capturing the victory while 2021 Rookie of the Year Kyle Carrasco (5C) was close behind looking for his first victory in the division. As the season progressed Galvin ran into issues which allowed Carrasco & Isaac Almaswari (#8) to jump ahead in points & battle for the championship. Almaswari grabbed his first ever Pure Stock victory in late July & in early September Carrasco was able to get his first ever Pure Stock win. Heading into the final night of competition on September 17th, Carrasco & Almaswari were separated by just 4 points. Almaswari had issues which allowed Carrasco to grab the Pure Stock Championship. He will now be required to move up to another division in 2023. Rookie of the Year Honors went to Matthew Hill (#24). Other winners include: Dave Wheeler (OH7) with 2 wins, who won his first ever race on pavement, Mahkrysta Hilton (OH6) with 1 win, & Ronald Johnson (#34) with 1 win.
Top 5 in Points:
5C Kyle Carrasco – 240
8 Isaac Almaswari – 216
41G Christopher Galvin – 214
15 Brendon Knowles – 199
34 Ronald Johnson - 195
AC Transmission Center Legend Cars
The AC Transmission Legend Cars continue to bring large car counts each and every season. The 2022 season was ultra competitive and saw two drivers grab their first ever CNS Legend victories including Ryan Jones (#21) & Travis Roe (#16). Multi time champion Danny Medina (#15) went on a tear early; winning the first 4 races of the season including sweeping the 4th of July weekend double races. Medina began to open up a large points lead, however heading into the Legend Invasion, he ran into issues and allowed Chris Eggleston (#22) to close the points gap. Eggleston put together a strong season never finishing outside of the Top 5. Eggleston’s strong closing performance secured him the points lead and ultimately his 5th Legend Car championship.
With a large car count each night, the legend car field was split to allow up & coming Legend drivers an opportunity to hone their skills and give them a chance to race with work their way up to compete with the fast legends. Ryan Land (#1) entered 2022 as a rookie in the division and began to progress each race and captured his first ever win on the final night of racing while also winning the Legend Championship & Rookie of the Year Honors. Other winners include: David Johnson (#29), Brett Reid (#2), Chasen Groff (#90), Garrett Wilson (#38), Austin Hackenberg (#75) & Brian Harlow (#27) all win 1 win in the legends.
22 Chris Eggleston – 340
66 Kyle Clegg – 308
21 Ryan Jones – 303
15 Danny Medina – 268
16 Travis Roe - 26
Puzzle Effect Denver Bandolero Bandit:
The 2022 Bandolero season would welcome brand new divisional sponsor Puzzle Effect Denver. The Bandolero Bandits feature some of our youngest competitors as they race around the CNS Roval. On the Bandoleros opening night Reagan Fruge (#5) grabbed his first ever victory with Wyatt Dent (#68) close behind. Dent went on to win 3 in a row including sweeping the 4th of July races. Dent missed the following race which allowed Fruge to regain the points lead after his victory on July 16th. Heading into the final night on October 8th, Fruge & Dent were separated by just 4 points. Fruge ran into issues early in the final feature & allowed Dent to capture the win & also his first ever Bandolero Bandit Championship.
Top 5 in Points:
68 Wyatt Dent – 153
5 Reagan Fruge – 147
61 Lillian Tuttle – 135
12 Aspyn Lange – 108
08 Tanner McKim - 91
Puzzle Effect Denver Bandolero Outlaw:
Dillyn Kellogg (#33) who won the 2021 Bandolero Bandit Championship moved up to the Outlaw division and dominated the season winning all 7 features. Kellogg also ran a full season as a rookie in the Legend Cars; which goes to show how the Bandoleros help young drivers develop their skills to move up into different divisions at CNS.
Top 5 in Points:
33 Dillyn Kellogg – 298
21 Madilyn Lange – 268
16 Emmalee Phelps – 143
00 Jacob Johnson – 117
88 Cade Fox – 73
The bandolero division started in 2019 and has since produced an incredible amount of talent that has allowed drivers to move up to different divisions, proving the bandoleros are a great place to start for younger drivers learning to race.
Graduates of the Bandoleros include:
Legend Cars: Sammy Haugen, Dillyn Kellogg, and Javon Barnard
Pure Stock: Isaac Almaswari
Figure 8: Kaleigh Swenson and Travis Sanders
Pro Trucks: Chasen Groff and Mahkrysta Hilton
Super Late Models: Brody Moore and Zach Morris
Witthar Racing Trains:
The fan favorite Wild & Crazy Trains put on great races each and every time they hit the track including hair raising X action and competitive racing, however in the end a familiar train captured their 10th championship. While the Crazy Train (#151) won 3 times during the 2022 season, issues in the late part of the season allowed Last Call Train (#86) to sneak by for the championship. Other winners include Failure 2 Yield (#2) with 1 win & SNAFU #80 with 1 win.
Top 5 in Points:
86 Last Call – 224
3 Anger Management – 204
5 Ninja Turtles Cowabunga Train – 188
311 Bipolar Express – 184
01 Dukes of Hazard - 178
Demo X Lite & Heavy:
Part racing, part demolition derby the Demo X thrilled fans all season long. Jayce Prante (#28) grabbed the Demo X Lite Championship, while Dave Johnson (#31) grabbed his 2nd consecutive Demo X Heavy Championship.
A big thanks to all the CNS staff who make each and every week's event possible and thank you to the fans & drivers for supporting CNS & short track racing, without you we would not be able to put on one of the best shows in Motorsports. Preparations are already under way for 2023, as we recently announced the first draft of the 2023 Racing Schedule.
We look forward to seeing everyone at Colorado National Speedway in 2023!