By STEVE EIGHINGER
Herald-Whig Staff Writer
Denny Woodworth is the first driver to clinch a 2013 track championship at Quincy Raceways.
Woodworth wrapped up the late model title with one week of racing remaining when his third-place feature finish Sunday night mathematically eliminated the rest of the field.
Almost fittingly, Woodworth cemented the championship without the help of a checkered flag, but in the consistent fashion that kept him at or near the top of the points standings throughout the summer.
The late model lawyer has not won a feature all year, but his week-in, week-out consistency has been unmatched.
Woodworth has finished in the top four in 13 of 16 points features with an average finish of 4.01. Woodworth has not finished lower than ninth in any points event.
"It's been a consistent season," he understated. "That's what we try for -- consistency. When we start a season, we just go racing. About midseason, we re-evaluate things as far as the points are concerned and then go from there."
The track title is Woodworth's second in a late model and third overall. He won the 2010 late model championship and the 1993 "A" modified crown.
Woodworth will enter the final week of the season with a 90-point advantage over Mark Burgtorf, who finished second behind feature winner Jason Perry.
The most points Woodworth could lose next week is 75, and that's if he would not show up at 8000 Broadway.
Woodworth led the first 14 laps of the main event before Perry roared past him on lap 15 and went on to post a 1.45-second victory over Burgtorf.
Perry, who will likely wind up fourth in points, was the 2012 track champ. Perry missed several weeks around midseason with health issues, but since his return has a 3.86 average feature finish.
In all likelihood, next Sunday will simply be a formality when it comes to deciding the championships of the other four weekly series.
Steven DeLonjay (modifieds), Tony Dunker (sport mods), Abe Huls (stock cars) and Austen Becerra (sport compacts) all moved closer to track titles of their own.
Modifieds: DeLonjay has a 69-point advantage over Dave Wietholder. DeLonjay won his 12th feature of the season and Wietholder finished second for the eighth time.
All DeLonjay needs to do to win a third straight track championship is show up and be guaranteed of at least 10 points. The most ground Wietholder could gain, even with a feature win, would be 65 points.
"Winning never gets old, not at all," DeLonjay said. "I always credit any success I may have to my dad. He's always given me a great car and has been there since the beginning."
DeLonjay's dad, Hank, was a 13-time track champ, 10 of those in a modified. If Steven wins this year's modified title, that would give him five track championships, two coming in the four-cylinder class in 2006-07.
Sport mods: Dunker won his eighth consecutive main event and stretched his streak of first or second-place feature finishes to 30. He also built his points advantage to 38 over Tanner Klingele.
Klingele has finished second to Dunker five times during the current eight-feature win streak.
All Dunker needs to do next Sunday to win his second straight series crown is take the track, but it's likely he'll be interested in doing more than that.
Not only will he be out to increase his win streak, but he also has the chance to lead the track in most feature and total victories.
Dunker and DeLonjay each have 12 feature wins, while Dunker holds a 23-21 edge in overall victories.
Dunker is gunning for his fourth track title, having also won the 2003-04 "B" mod championships.
Dunker is seeking to become just the ninth driver in the track's 39-year history to win four or more titles.
Stock cars: Brandon "Macho Man" Savage returned to the track for the first time since Aug. 28 and won his third feature over Huls and defending champ Terry Houston.
Huls' second-place showing allowed him to remain in full control of the title chase with a 23-point margin over Houston. Like DeLonjay and Dunker, all Huls needs to do is start a heat race next Sunday to clinch his second track championship and first since 2009.
Sport compacts: Becerra's sixth straight checkered flag improved his points lead to seven over Kim Abbott, who finished fourth in the features. A seventh-place or higher feature finish next week clinches
Becerra's first track title. Since midseason 2012, Becerra has won 20 of 29 features.