The first half of the hobby stock season has been a classic case of a veteran driver trying to ward off a championship challenge from a younger rival: Steve Carlin vs. Bobby Anders.
Carlin, a three-time and defending track champ, is seeking to tie Eddie Dieker’s all-time hobby stock record of four titles. Anders, who has never finished higher than fifth in the points chase, has won five of the seven first-half features and sits one point (270-269) behind Carlin going into Sunday’s midseason championship race.
Jim Powell and Mike Wiley look to be the only bona fide threats to challenge Carlin and Anders in the second half, but at this stage of the calendar it looks like a two-man showdown the rest of the season.
Here’s how the first half of the hobby stock season breaks down:
Series: Hobby stocks.
Driver of the first half: Bobby Anders.
Most improved driver: Brian Hoener.
Driver to watch in second half: Mike Wiley.
Total victories: Bobby Anders 8, Jake Powers 3, Tanner Klingele 3.
Feature wins: Bobby Anders 5, Tanner Klingele 2.
Feature second places: Steve Carlin 4, Jim Powell 2.
Heat wins: Bobby Anders 3, Jake Powers 3, Mike Wiley 2, Nathan Anders 2.
Track points: Steve Carlin 270, Bobby Anders 269, Jim Powell 254, Mike Wiley, 253, Tanner Klingele 245, Jake Powers 244, Brian Hoener 236.
Herald-Whig Performance Points: Bobby Anders 135, Steve Carlin 114, Jim Powell 85, Tanner Klingele 74, Mike Wiley 67.
Feature points: Steve carlin 260, Bobby Anders 256, Jim Powell 241, Mike Wiley 246.
Second-half points: Not yet applicable.
Heat points: Bobby Anders 13, Jake Powers 11, Steve Carlin 10, Mike Wiley 7.
Improvement points: Steve Carlin 34, Bobby Anders 24,, Jim Powell 24, Justin Bartz 13, Travis Booher 13, Mike Wiley 13.
Feature laps led: Bobby Anders 51, Tanner Klingele 22, Brian Hoener 20.
Feature laps run (out of 130): Jim Powell 130, Mike Wiley 130, Tanner Klingele 128, Justin Bartz 119, Steve Carlin 116.
Money leaders: Bobby Anders $710, Steve Carlin $500, Jim Powell $465, Mike Wiley $425, Brian Hoener $410.
Fastest feature lap: Not applicable to this class.
Closest finish: Not applicable to this class.