PAT WARD TAKES FIRST WIN OF THE SEASON THIS PAST SUNDAY AT UTICA-ROME WHILE ROCKY WARNER, CLAUDE HUTCHINGS JR., AND PETE STEFANSKI ALSO SCORE VICTORIES
VERNON, NY- Quality Manufacturing and Parks Paving & Sealing presented the racing action on Sunday, June 19, which contained an exciting night of action that showed off the CRSA Sprint Cars alongside a normal show and a make-up feature for the Pro Stocks. For the Gates-Cole Insurance Modifieds, Pat Ward won his first of the season. He shared victory lane with Rocky Warner in the SUNY Canton 602 Sportsman, Claude Hutchings Jr. in the Broedel Energy Open Sportsman, and twice with Pete Stefanski, as he took home both victories for the G&I Homes of Vernon Pro Stocks. In the CRSA Sprints, Eddie Strada III won over Cory Sparks. For further details, look for the CRSA rundown.
Tim Mayne and Pat Ward took starter Matt Burdick’s green flag to begin the Gates-Cole Insurance Modified feature. Using his position on the outside, Ward dug his right rear tire into the top side of the speedway and took the lead from the get-go. Mayne yielded his spot to Mike Mahaney, who started a row back. Ward began to pull away from the field behind him, leaving Mahaney to battle with the third place Alan Johnson. Meanwhile, Larry Wight, Stewart Friesen, and Matt Sheppard began their climb through the ranks, with Wight leading the charge, fighting into the top five by the seventh circuit. Sheppard followed, in fifth by lap 10.
The first caution on the race came at the halfway mark, reeling in Ward to the rest of the field. On the restart, Wight began a good run that allowed him to get past both Johnson and Danny Varin, to get up to third. Another yellow flag waved on lap 21, bringing Sheppard and Friesen together. The two battled back and forth for the final spot in the top five until the final caution on lap 24. On the restart, Sheppard was able to make his machine stick on the bottom to complete the pass for the fifth. At the front, Ward once again drove off using the top, taking his first win of the season. Second went to Mahaney, followed by Wight, Sheppard, and Varin. The top ten was filled out by Friesen, Marc Johnson, Alan Johnson, Tim Fuller, and Vic Coffey.
The SUNY Canton 602 Sportsman came to the green with Brent Joy and Rocco Leone at the head of the field. Joy used his pole position to run away with the lead on lap 1, followed closely by Leone. The only caution of the race collected four cars five laps into the race. When green returned to the track, Leone was able to slip past Joy to take the top spot. Behind them, Kyle Kiehn had worked his way into a podium spot and was beginning to contend for the lead. Using the bottom, Kiehn fought by to lead the field after a dozen laps were completed, but he couldn’t hold it for long. Rocky Warner, coming from 11th, was charging through to the front, putting the pressure on Kiehn. With five to go, Warner took the top spot and never looked back. Kiehn settled for second, followed by Leone, David Schilling, and Glenn Forward.
Jim Rothwell and Tom Tophoven led the Broedel Energy Open Sportsman starting field to the green flag with Tophoven leading the opening circuit. Rothwell powered by to lead lap two and would hold the advantage for the next handful of laps, until fourth place starter Jeremy Vunk slid underneath Rothwell to be score the leader on lap eight. Rothwell refused to go away easily, as he powered by Vunk for the top spot a circuit later, only to lose it back to Vunk on lap 10. At this point, it became a four car battle for the lead with Vunk, Rothwell, Steve Way, and Claude Hutchings Jr. using every lane of the multi-lane track. Hutchings would use the extreme outside to get by everyone and take the point lap 13 with Way following. From that point on, Hutchings left little doubt on the outcome as he ran away to his second win of the season over Way, Vunk, Randy Shantel, and Jack Miller.
Jerry Streeter and Frank Hyatt brought the Pro Stocks to their feature event, but neither led the first lap. The leader, Luke Horning, went from fourth to first in one lap to lead the beginning of the race after racing four wide in turns one and two. As he began to build a lead, Pete Stefanski was starting to gain momentum. After chasing down Bill Knapp for second on 11, Stefanski set his sights on the leading Horning. Using the bottom, Stefanski made up ground on Horning. With three to go, Stefanski passed Horning to become the leader before running away and taking the win. Horning, Knapp, Mike Welch, and Jim Normoyle trailed.
The first G&I Homes of Vernon Pro Stock feature, held over from May 22, got off to a fast start with front row starter Travis Welch gaining the early advantage. He would hold on to the lead until lap five, when sixth place starter Mike Welch (no relation) would slide by using the bottom line of the speedway. Mike Welch would begin to pull away and looked ready to cruise to his second win of the season, but disaster hit him on lap 13. As Welch tried putting a lap on rookie Aaron Page, Page would spin and make contact with the right rear of Welch, giving him a flat. That would bring out the only caution, with Travis Welch being shown the leader again. The last five laps became a dogfight for the lead between Travis Welch, Jim Normoyle, Pete Stefanski, Chris Carr, and Luke Horning. It would be Stefanski that would prevail, scoring his first win of the season, as he fended off Normoyle, Travis Welch, Horning, and Nick Stone at the checkered.
Next Sunday, June 26, Gates-Cole Insurance and Wilber-Duck Chevrolet presents the $1,500 to win Martin Memorial for the GRIT 602 Sportsman Series plus the Gates-Cole Insurance Modifieds, Broedel Energy Open Sportsman, and G&I Homes of Vernon Pro Stocks. The exciting night of NASCAR Whelen All-American Series racing starts at 6 p.m. with gates opening at 3:30 p.m. For more information, please log on to www.uticaromespeedway.com or call the speedway at (315)829-4557.
SUNY CANTON & WILBER-DUCK CHEVROLET RACE SUMMARY
GATES-COLE INSURANCE MODIFIED FEATURE FINISH (30 LAPS)-PAT WARD, Mike Mahaney, Larry Wight, Matt Sheppard, Danny Varin, Stewart Friesen, Marc Johnson, Alan Johnson, Tim Fuller, Vic Coffey, Rob Bellinger, Vinnie Vitale, Pete Taylor, Tim Mayne, Cory Pike, Billy Dunn, and Matt Hulsizer.
SUNY CANTON 602 SPORTSMAN FEATURE FINISH (30 LAPS)- ROCKY WARNER, Kyle Kiehn, Rocco Leone, David Schilling, Glenn Forward, Brent Joy, Chris Mackey, Beth Bellinger, Matt Janczuk, Stephon Denton, JaMike Sowle, Brad Alger, John Christian, A.J. Filbeck, Casey Williams, Troy Fleming, Aaron Jacobs, Billy Trexler III, Jimmy Moyer, A.J. Digsby, Jason Rood, Bobby Gage, Charlie Tibbitts, and Daryl Nutting.
BROEDEL ENERGY OPEN SPORTSMAN FEATURE FINISH (20 LAPS)-CLAUDE HUTCHINGS JR., Steve Way, Jeremy Vunk, Randy Shantel, Jack Miller, Mark Effner, Tom Tophoven, Heath Carney, Craig Pope, John DeForest, Lucas Heintz, Todd Fey, Raymond Carey, and Jim Rothwell.
RAIN DELAYED (FROM MAY 22) G&I HOMES OF VERNON PRO STOCK FEATURE FINISH (30 LAPS)-PETE STEFANSKI, Jim Normoyle, Travis Welch, Luke Horning, Nick Stone, Mike Welch, Gus Hollner, Frank Hyatt, Jerry Streeter, Ernie Staelens, Chris Carr, Aaron Page, Andy Lashure, Chris Welch, and Bill Knapp.
G&I HOMES OF VERNON PRO STOCK FEATURE FINISH (20 LAPS)- PETE STEFANSKI, Luke Horning, Bill Knapp, Mike Welch, Jim Normoyle, Travis Welch, Nick Stone, Gus Hollner, Joe Palmer, Chris Carr, Jerry Streeter, Aaron Page, Frank Hyatt, Andy LaShure, Ernie Staelens, and Chris Welch.
CRSA 305 SPRINT FEATURE FINISH (20 LAPS)-EDDIE STRADA III, Cory Sparks, Mark Kiser, Daryl Ruggles, Brian Krummel, Kyle Smith, Jeremy Quick, Steve Glover, Kelly Hebing, JR Hurlburt, Billy VanInwegan, Dalton Kerrick, Brett Jaycox, Josh Flint, Billy Shantel Jr., Christian Rumsey, Art Kiser, Billy Jaycox, Bob Gray, Jeff Trombley, Sydney Prince, Emily VanInwegan, and Kory Gurney. DNS-Tyler Jashembowski.