It looks as if Nick Joanides will end the saga of the No. 77 NASCAR Late Model car at Irwindale Speedway.

At least for this season.

The car, its driver, owner, crew, engine provider and sponsors have been through a lot this year.

They've been disqualified, suspended, fined and managed to win a couple races amidst the chaos.

The latest chapter saw Aaron Staudinger, the driver of the No. 77 car, get fined and suspended for his actions on the track Aug.4.

In steps Joanides, a last-minute replacement for Staudinger in Saturday night's race. Joanides, who didn't know he was driving the No. 77 car until three days before the race, won. In the words of Joanides, it was "quite surprising."

With Staudinger serving his suspension, Joanides was tapped to finish the season. There are three races left for the Late Models at Irwindale Speedway. The next race is Sept.1.

Joanides has been racing off and on in the Super Late Model division at the track, but in just eight races, he has posted seven top fives, including four second-place finishes this year.

The win in the Late Model race was his first of the year. It's not the way he wanted to get his first win, having to drive for a suspended driver, but he said he's happy for theopportunity to finish the year in the car owned by Lloyd McGhee and prepared by Jackson Racing.

"It was one of those perfect days," said Joanides, a driver from Woodland Hills. "They're so rare."

Things happened so quickly for Joanides that he wasn't familiar with the team's sponsors. It is customary to thank the sponsors after a win, but Joanides said he didn't know who they were.

After winning the race, Joanides had to walk around his new race car and read the sponsors on the fenders and the hood, to make sure no one was forgotten.

This was the third time the car won a race at Irwindale Speedway. The scary part is that Joanides said the car can be better.

"There's still a lot left in it," Joanides said. "Actually the car could dominate if we could get it the way I want."

Joanides was the seventh different winner in 12 races in the Late Model division.

Tim Huddleston of Agoura Hills, who is tied with Jace Meier for the lead in the track's Late Model standings, has won a division-leading three races this year.

Chris Carmody of Valencia has two wins. Huddleston, Meier and Carmody race for High Point Racing, a four-car team owned and operated by Huddleston.

The High Point Racing team will expand to five cars for the final three races of the year. Jeremy McGrath, a seven-time AMA Supercross champion, will join High Point Racing in the team's No. 57 entry.