by Jacob Hord, @HordRaceWatcher

As the sixth AFCS Season is getting ready to get underway this Friday, April 19 at Attica Raceway Park and Saturday, April 20 at Fremont Speedway, let’s take a look at who will be competing for their share of the $35,000+ 410 Championship purse and $21,000+ in other bonuses, on top of the nightly purses. We’ll start with last year’s points standings:

  1. Cap Henry: Coming off a career year that saw Henry win six times with the AFCS enroute to the championship. Henry, driver of the Jeff Ward Motorsports 33W machine, is back to defend his title in 2024. His season didn’t get off to a great start at Attica’s Opener in March, as he missed the feature. That shouldn’t be a tell-tale sign of this upcoming season. Ohio’s most recent Triple Crown Champion is still a favorite for the 2024 championship. When Cap and Co. get rolling, it’s hard to stop them. 
  2. Byron Reed: Well, he’s retired. It looks like he has some vintage cars that will keep him busy, maybe we’ll see them on track this year.
  3. Stuart Brubaker: Another solid year for Brubaker saw him pick up one AFCS win in August, but he was up front a lot, notching 20 top ten finishes throughout 2023. If Brubaker can get a win early in 2024 and keep his momentum up, he should be battling for another top three spot in the 2024 championship. 
  4. Travis Philo: Philo put together a very solid campaign in 2023, finding himself in the thick of the championship hunt at Attica, Fremont, and AFCS. If Philo and crew chief AJ Havens continue to make some gains, they’ll be competitive no matter where they race at. 
  5. Chris Andrews: It wasn’t the 2023 season that Andrews wanted, as he got the bugs worked out of his new self-owned team. He showed flashes of speed, but just couldn’t get a whole night put together. If Andrews can get the bugs worked out and get some consistent results, he could find himself in the top three. 
  6. TJ Michael: In the last year of the family-owned 8M, TJ had a solid year. He wasn’t able to crack into the win column, but he had plenty of good finishes. Michael has a new ride in the Prosser Racing #19 car for 2024, and they recently threw their hat into the ring to chase the AFCS title..
  7. Bryce Lucius: The national 410 Rookie of the Year was fast out of the gate, and it didn’t matter the competition. Sure, there were growing pains for the now 17 year old, but that’s to be expected. If the start of 2024 is any signal (minus the crash), Lucius is going to be giving headaches to Ohio’s top dogs. 
  8. Duane Zablocki: Although Zablocki hasn’t signed up for the 2024 edition of the AFCS Sprints, he’s been loyal to the series the past few years. Zablocki had some sneaky good runs at Fremont, just enough to keep competitors on their toes.
  9. DJ Foos: DJ’s season was derailed at the Spring Nationals due to burns he suffered. Foos returned to action in August, and was able to get some good runs in. Hopefully DJ can make up for lost time in 2024. 
  10. Tyler Gunn: The 2023 Wayne County track Champion Gunn didn’t compete in every event, but was definitely fast when he joined up for some AFCS races. If Gunn can find a little more consistency and not end many nights on the wrecker, Gunn could be battling for a top five spot in the championship
  11. Kyle Capodice: Capodice took some time off in 2023 and had veteran Brian Lay finish out the year in the Capodice 12 machine. Although Capodice himself hasn’t announced any of his plans for 2024, the 12 car will be in action with the AFCS in 2024 with 410 rookie Luke Griffith behind the wheel. 

Nine of the eleven cars that competed with the AFCS 410’s in 2023 have signed back on for 2024. There are 22 cars (as of April 15th) signed on to compete with the AFCS Sprints in 2024. Let’s take a look at who else is joining the fun this season. (List as of 4/18/2024)

  • The Brian Smith: After a quick one-year hiatus from full-time AFCS competition, Brian Smith returns for the 2024 season. The baby-blue “GraceCar” is a very solid addition to the AFCS fields. The veteran Smith can still mix it up with the young-guns, and is very much a top ten car.
  • Sean Rayhall: Sportscar champion turned sprint car racer Sean Rayhall is chasing the AFCS after spending part of last year with Prosser Racing. Now in his own #14 machine with Prince Evans turning the wrenches, Rayhall is looking to make some gains this season to become a nightly threat. Rayhall looked more comfortable on night two at Attica. Give this duo some time and I think they’ll find some good results.
  • Michael Lutz: Lutz, a Western PA region up-and-comer, was a surprise to see (to me at least) join the AFCS for 2024. Lutz has some experience with the AFCS, running the double Fremont Speedway weekend last year. I’m excited to see the progress Lutz can make throughout the season in his #86 car. 
  • Kody Brewer: the 410 rookie has raced with the AFCS in 305 competition, but now Brewer is racing with the big boys. Brewer has shown speed in his two 410 starts to begin the season at Attica. I’d expect to see Brewer get faster through the season as he gets more comfortable in the car. 
  • Jordan Ryan: Jordan and the MAR Motorsports have hit a mixture of AFCS, FAST, Outlaw, and local races over the last couple of seasons. This is a team that should do well in the AFCS Series. We haven’t seen them a ton at Fremont, but Ryan has a 305 championship to his credit at Fremont, and two at Attica, so experience isn’t lacking. This team should be another great addition for the series.
  • Tyler Street: Street has raced a little bit here, a little bit there around Ohio and the Ohio Valley Region. The former OVSCA Champion cut his teeth at Attica and Fremont in the 305 division and now has a few years of experience under his belt in the 410. The family-owned 4* machine has a limited schedule this year, but they’ll be sure to make them most of their starts this year. Again, this team is a great addition for the AFCS. 
  • Cale Thomas: Thomas is undoubtedly a contender for the AFCS Championship in the Jay Kiser #23 car. That’s a fact. Since teaming up halfway through last season, no one has battled Cap Henry more or more consistently than Thomas. They seem to have some bad luck, but if they can get past that, we could have a heavyweight slobberknocker of an AFCS title fight. 
  • Dan McCarron: Although he isn’t sure if he’ll be able to make every show, it’s never a bad idea to sign up for the AFCS Series, right? The Michigander McCarron has wins at both Attica and Fremont in 305 and/or 360 competition, he’s just looking for that pesky 410 win at the tracks. McCarron can pass a lot of cars during feature racing, maybe he’ll make a pass that gets him into victory lane this season.
  • Zeth Sabo: One of Ohio’s brightest rising stars, Sabo is back in the Rich Farmer 29 car to chase the AFCS title. Sabo has picked up wins at both Attica and Fremont in 410 action. Sabo has gotten better through each season, and 2024 could be a breakout year. 
  • Trey Jacobs: The former Attica 410 champion will be someone to watch as the 2024 AFCS season goes along. A winless 2023 will have Jacobs eager to get back onto the top step of the podium. We haven’t seen him a lot at Fremont the past couple of season, but he has led laps there, and may have had the win if a crash didn’t derail that race. If Jacobs can get a win early, more wins will definitely be on the docket. 
  • Jerry Dahms: How can we not like Jerry Dahms? Dahms represents the backbone of grassroots racing, he doesn’t have the same resources as the top team, but he still heads to the racetrack to do racecar things. Dahms has shown some improvement the past couple of seasons, and it was a big deal when he raced his way into the feature at Fremont one night last season. Series across the nation benefit from having the Jerry Dahms as a part of their group. 
  • Luke Griffith: The other 410 rookie that will be tackling the AFCS Series; Griffith will be piloting the Capodice #12 car. He made his first 410 start on April 13 at Attica, and looked solid. Griffith picked up some wins in 360 competition in 2023, and will be working towards finding victory lane against the tough AFCS competition in 2024. 
  • Mike Keegan: The name and the famous “X” car synonymous with northwest Ohio Sprint Car success is now with Mike Keegan. Keegan has progressed through the 305 and 360 ranks and is tackling another 410 season in 2024. Keegan is another competitor that is getting better each time he hits the track, finishing 2023 with some good runs. I expect Keegan’s growth to continue through this season, and wouldn’t be surprised to see him to be a regular in the top five. 
  • Jeffrey Neubert: Before late last season, it had been 2020 since we had seen Jeffrey Neubert in a 410 sprint car. He made a pair of starts at both Attica and Fremont with the All Stars before the season ended. It’s good to see Neubert back behind the wheel and it’ll be interesting to see where this season takes him!


AFCS 305: The AFCS 305 series looks to be as competitive as ever in 2024. Defending champion Paul Weaver will again have his hands full with Jamie Miller. Those two are two of the favorites for the championship in 2024, but there are a handful of other drivers that can win on any given night, proven last Friday at Attica as Jimmy McGrath Jr. scored his maiden sprint car win. 

The 305 class is full of seasoned veterans and the rising stars of sprint car racing, and they mix it up regularly every time they hit the track. In addition to Weaver and Miller battling for the championship, drivers like Dustin Stroup, John Ivy, Brandon Moore, Kasey Ziebold, and Bryan Sebetto all have what it takes to win on any given night. That’s not to mention drivers like Steve Rando, Seth Schneider, Dustin Dinan, and the aforementioned McGrath. That’s 11 drivers that can go out and win, over half the feature starters. Top to bottom, it’s hard to find a class as close and competitive as the AFCS 305s are. 

Then there’s the drivers that are really coming into their own, and are only going to get better as the season goes on. Drivers like Bradley Bateson, Blayne Keckler, Jud Dickerson, Brenden Torok, Logan Mongeau and Mike Moore. Now you’re up to 17 drivers who have a legitimate shot at a top ten finish, or better. And there are names I didn’t mention that could always come through the field as well. These 305’s are a breeding ground for great racing, and seeing these guys and gals get to run for extra money is truly great. Don’t sleep on the 305 AFCS Championship this year, chances are it will come down to the last lap of the season finale. Plus, you never know who may show up with a 305 ride, which just adds to it all.

305 Drivers: (As of 4/18/2024)

John Ivy

Kasey Ziebold

Jud Dickerson

Bradley Bateson

Austin Black

Logan Mongeau

Blayne Keckler

Dustin Stroup

Lee Sommers

Paul Weaver

Seth Schnieder

Bryan Sebetto

Brandon Moore

Zach Kramer

Brian Razum

Caleb Crispen

Jimmy McGrath Jr.

Dustin Dinan

Steve Rando

Brenden Torok

Mike Moore

The full AFCS Schedule can be found here

The AFCS kicks off it’s 2024 season Friday, April 19th at Attica Raceway Park and Saturday, April 20th at Fremont Speedway.