Redwood Acres Raceway
Way’s Championship A Long Time Coming
Nothing can replace or duplicate experience in life.
Of all the drivers currently racing at Redwood Acres Raceway, nobody can match Doug Way. The Fieldbrook driver began racing at the Acres in the 80s participating in the street stock division and later the sportsman division. Way later became a frequent competitor in the real stock division and eventually transitioned to the bomber class.
While he had some victories through the years, Way never had the equipment he needed to compete up front regularly every week. That changed this season when he bought a new car. That along with his knowledge and experience behind the wheel allowed him to not only win multiple main events in 2023 but the bomber division championship as well.
In all, Way won twice this season and while the victories were important, his ability to finish near the front is what earned him this year’s championship. Way finished in the top five in seven of the ten feature races while also qualifying among the top four in every race in 2023. His consistency and speed allowed him to clinch the bomber championship simply by qualifying for the season’s final event the Fall Spectacular on September 25.
Kadence Toland had a superb sophomore season. Even though she was unable to score a victory this season, she vastly improved her speed and performance every race. Toland matched Way’s top five count with seven with her best finish being second in the August 12 race. Based on her performance this season, it would not be a surprise to see Toland in victory lane in 2024.
2022 bomber champ Jordan Krupa statistically had the best season of his career in 2023. Krupa was victorious in four of the 10 races while also scoring the most top five finishes with eight. Unfortunately for the defending champion, he was unable to start in two of the feature races during the season which ultimately prevented him from potentially going back-to-back. Based purely on his performance this season, Krupa has to be the favorite for the 2024 bomber championship.
Tanisha Ratzlaff was the highest placing rookie in the championship standings as she placed fourth. The 2022 roadrunner champion had the difficult task of moving up to the bigger and faster bomber cars. In addition, Ratzlaff also had the pressure of taking over another driver’s car as she drove Raquel Krupa’s car all year while Krupa was on maternity leave for this season.
Ratzlaff had her share of struggles in 2023 but she persevered and looked much more comfortable behind the wheel by the end of the season. She earned three top five finishes for the year, her best of fourth coming during the Fair Race on Friday July 23.
Tyler Krupa rounded out the top five finishers even though he only raced part of the season in 2023. The former champ chose to focus his efforts on his Legend car in the final portion of the year. Krupa’s decision paid off as he was able to take the Legends championship. As far as his bomber effort, Krupa took one win this season with four top five finishes.
Other main event victors in 2023 for the bombers include Brandon White who won twice including one of the two Upstate Bomber Series races this season on July 9. Chris Sarvinski also took a hard-earned victory in his first bomber start on July 30.
Submitted By: Matthew Sullivan