Bakersfield, CA – Christian McGhee has been missing from Spears Srl Southwest Tour Series competition for nearly a year, but he will be back behind the wheel of a Garcia Racingprepared FURY Race Cars Super Late Model, when the series returns to his home track for the “Spears Manufacturing 100 presented by Pinnacle Peak Steakhouse San Dimas”. McGhee grew up racing at Irwindale Speedway, before turning his attention to the Spears SRL Southwest Tour Series. He earned the Rookie-of-the-Year Award in 2016, finishing third in the championship standings. McGhee led 43 laps in his very first series start, but he is still looking for that first victory, after 32 career series events.
The 2021 “Chilly Willy 150” winner raced part-time with Garcia Racing last season, competing on the ½-mile ovals through the “JM Environmental Inc. Wild West Shootout Get it Hot 75” at Kern County Raceway Park in June. But due to a heavy work schedule, he was unable to compete in the final two big track events. Zach Telford added to his planned time-share four-race schedule to pick those up. McGhee had a best result of fourth in his four-race program, when he claimed that finish at Irwindale in a 28-car field. Overall, McGhee has a best series finish of third, which he has accomplished five times, amongst his career 12 top-five’s.
Despite his lack of a series victory, he is always a threat to win at any facility on the circuit, but especially at his home track. McGhee will participate in the local NASCAR Advanced Auto Parts Pro Late Model Division prior to his SRL venture. Garcia Racing and McGhee will look to get back on the same page, after their long layoff together. For the SRL race, McGhee will be teamed up with Rookie-of-the-Year championship leader Zach Telford, as both will be competing for their first series wins.
McGhee will be driving the #17 in lieu of his normal #71, which has been a fixture for the Claremont, CA racer throughout his career. The new number is in honor of the late Michael Atkinson (AKA Mike A), who was a fixture at Irwindale Speedway since its inaugural season in 1999. “Mike A” used the #17 when he raced. He was the Race Director at the speedway when he passed on February 11, 2021. Mike’s birthday is May 22nd, one day after the series fourth event of the season.
The “Spears Manufacturing 100 presented by Pinnacle Peak Steakhouse” will take place on May 21st. It will pay $6,000 to the winner, thanks to the $1,000 “Winner’s Bonus” from Loyd Mcghee and J&M Racing. It will also pay $500 to the Fast Qualifier and another $500 to the leader at lap 17. Each of those bonuses are donated in honor of Michael Atkinson. Thank you, Loyd, and J&M Racing, for the $2,000 worth of additional bonuses for the teams!
Celebrating its twenty-second season in 2022, the SPEARS Southwest Tour Series is a regional stock car series competing on paved ovals in the southwestern portion of the U.S. “The SPEARS Southwest Tour Series…Where the Champions Race”.