Rt 5 Vernon, NY
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VERNON, NY- A packed grandstand at Utica-Rome Speedway was treated to another full night of racing action that saw Matt Sheppard and Pat Ward share the limelight in the Modified Twin 20 lap feature events while Jeremy Vunk dominated the Sportsman to grab his second consecutive checkered flag.  Other winners on Express Systems Integration and Bill Herrig’s Auto night included Tom Denton in the Pro Stocks and Tim Janczuk in the exciting Pure Stocks main event.

Shannon Whaley and Adam Roberts brought the starting field to the green to start the first of two 20 lap Modified feature races with Whaley grabbing the early advantage.  Whaley looked strong early on as he maintained the point but behind him, it was Matt Sheppard and Ronnie Johnson making the charge to the front. 

Sheppard, from 10th, was into the runner up spot by lap five and putting pressure on the leader Whaley and on a lap six caution gave Sheppard the chance he needed.  When the green lights flickered back on, Sheppard charged to the lead dropping Whaley to second.

While Sheppard was out front, 13th place starter Ronnie Johnson was also on the move.  Cracking the top five on the fifth the circuit, Johnson continued his march by the halfway point he was to second behind Sheppard and closing in.  Whaley, Mike Mahaney, and Todd Burley rounded out the top five at that point.

The last 10 circuits saw Johnson repeatedly attempt to take the lead but Sheppard was too strong and would race to the score his second win of the season over Johnson, Stewart Friesen, Mahaney, and Burley.  Larry Wight, Alan Johnson, Pat Ward, Willy Decker, and Ryan Phelps rounded out the top ten.

With Sheppard drawing 12 for the inversion for the second 20 lap Modified feature, 12th place finisher in the first race Bill Trexler, Jr. on the pole with Jason Rood sharing the front row and when the green came out, it was Rood who grabbed the lead at the start.  Rood would lead until a lap two excursion of the top of turns three and four would drop him back in the lineup, handing the lead to fifth place starter Pat Ward.

With Ward now showing the quick way around the big Vernon oval, it was Friesen again on the charge.  Starting 10th on the grid, Friesen quickly moved through the field and by lap five he was up to second and looking to track down the leader but Ward would have none of it has he continued to pull away.

At halfway of the 20 lap feature Ward was dominating the event over Friesen, Alan Johnson, Decker, and Phelps.  As the race continued under green flag conditions until the finish, it was Ward with the impressive win, his third of the season, over point leader Friesen.  Alan Johnson would close the gap on Friesen at the end but would have to settle for third over Mahaney, Phelps, Ronnie Johnson, Decker, Sheppard, Burley, and Wight.

Both Modified events carried a full purse making each race worth $2,000 to win

Sportsman action saw Jack Miller led the opening two circuits of the 20 lap Sportsman main event with Claude Hutchings, Jr. blasting by to become the pace setter on lap three.  Hutchings’ lead was short lived however as 11th place starter Jeremy Vunk would charge on lap seven.  From that point on, Vunk would dominate the remainder of the race to score the win, his third of the season.  Point leader Matt Janczuk would come in second followed by Hutchings, Steve way, and Chris Mackey.

The Pro Stock 20 lap feature saw Glenn Forward lead the opening eight laps until the winner of the previous three events, Pete Stefanski, slipped by to take the top spot on lap nine from his 13th starting spot.  12th place starter Tom Denton followed Stefanski’s charge to the front and made his move to the lead on lap 12.  Denton’s bid was successful as he took over the lead and raced to the win with Stefanski, Chris Carr, Mark Effner, and Shawn Frost chasing.  The win was Denton’s fifth win of the season

Pole sitter Andy Szewczyk led the opening lap of the 15 lap Pure Stock feature with sixth place starter Bill Mason taking the point on lap two.  From that point on, the battle was on for the lead for the rest of the race between several drivers including Mason, Ricky Breed, Rob Thieme, Dave Bruno, Ron Hawker, and Nathan Peckham with Mason barely holding the edge until he pitted on lap 12 with a flat tire.  For the last three circuits the trio of Thieme, Janczuk, and Peckham battled three wide for the win with Janczuk slipping by Thieme on the last lap to score the win, his second of the season.  Thieme, Peckham, Breed, and Cunningham trailed at the line.  Peckham was later disqualified for a weight infraction.

The final Sunday night four division show is on tap for next Sunday, August 26, as Daryl’s Heavy Truck Repair and Safelite Auto Glass will present a regular show of Modifieds, Sportsman, Pro Stocks, and Pure Stocks.  Racing action starts at 6 p.m. with the gates swinging open at 3:30 p.m.  For more information, log on to www.uticaromespeedway.com or call the speedway office at (315) 829-4557.

EXPRESS SYSTEMS INTEGRATIONS AND BILL HERRIG’S RACE SUMMARY

MODIFIED FEATURE FINISH #1 (20 LAPS)-MATT SHEPPARD, Ronnie Johnson, Stewart Friesen, Mike Mahaney, Todd Burley, Larry Wight, Alan Johnson, Pat Ward, Willy Decker, Ryan Phelps, Jason Rood, Bill Trexler Jr., Adam Roberts, Casey Williams, Shannon Whaley, Jimmy Davis, Chris Busta, Jim Mahaney, Ted Teal, Dave Moyer, Phil Burkart Jr., Steve Hulsizer, and Todd Thomas.  DNS-Ted Lamb and Tye Scott Rood.

MODIFIED FEATURE FINISH #2 (20 LAPS)-PAT WARD, Stewart Friesen, Alan Johnson, Mike Mahaney, Ryan Phelps, Ronnie Johnson, Willy Decker, Matt Sheppard, Todd Burley, Larry Wight, Bill Trexler Jr., Jimmy Davis, Chris Busta, Adam Roberts, Casey Williams, Jim Mahaney, Jason Rood, Shannon Whaley, Phil Burkart Jr., Dave Moyer, Ted Teal, Todd Thomas, and Steve Hulsizer.  DNS-Ted Lamb and Tye Scott Rood.

SPORTSMAN FEATURE FINISH (20 LAPS)-JEREMY VUNK, Matt Janczuk, Claude Hutchings Jr., Steve Way, Chris Mackey, AJ Filbeck, Jack Miller, Heath Carney, Craig Pope, Mike Stiles, Stephen Denton, Randy Shantel, Brian Thomas, Chris McCoy, CJ Castelletti, Robert Barker, Toby Klish, and Kyle DeMetro. DNS-Bobby Heintz and Tim Nye.

PRO STOCK FEATURE FINISH (20 LAPS)-TOM DENTON, Pete Stefanski, Chris Carr, Mark Effner, Shawn Frost, Glenn Forward, Bill Knapp, Bret Belden, Corie Locke, Dwight Johnson, AJ Digsby, Andy Lashure, Dan Lashure, Dana Camenga, Jeff Pastorella, Ed Ostrander, Glenn Weaver, Jim Normoyle, Jim Money, and Brent Tardy.

PURE STOCK FEATURE FINISH (15 LAPS)-TIM JANCZUK, Rob Thieme, Ricky Breed, Chris Cunningham, Frank Hyatt, Ron Hawker, Chris Watkins, Phil Norman, Keith Stevenson, Mark Chrzanowski, Andy Szewczyk, Bill Mason, Jim Thomas, Brian Johnson, Brandon Greene, John Jacobs, Bryan Owens, Dave Bruno, and Nathan Peckham.  DNS-Scott Wheelock.
August 19th 2012
MATT SHEPPARD AND PAT WARD GRAB FEATURE WINS