Speedway News (9314)
Keep up on racing and speedway news from around the US
Quaker State, the iconic motor oil with more than 100 years of history, is pleased to announce the winning throwback paint scheme determined by fan voting, the No. 11 Quaker State race car, driven by Steve Kinser in 2005 at the 20th World of Outlaws Championship. At the 9th Annual Quaker State 400 presented by Walmart at Kentucky Speedway, the No. 21 Wood Brothers Ford Mustang driven by Paul Menard will feature the historic paint scheme paying homage to Kentucky Speedway’s 20th anniversary and Quaker State’s more than 100-year history.
Quaker State has been involved in some of the most memorable moments in motorsports, with some of the most recognized names in the sport. To honor Quaker State legends, Quaker State released a video with former Quaker State crew chief Larry McReynolds, current Quaker State pro angler Jimmy Houston and Wood Brothers driver Paul Menard to reveal the winning paint scheme.
Mahoning Valley Speedway heads into the mid-point of the 2019 season this coming Saturday evening, June 29 with a special 75-lap Modified feature that will reward the winner $2500. Race time is 6:00 pm.
And, all indications are pointing towards a great race for the top prize with a number of noteworthy drivers looking to cash in at the always demanding paved ¼-mile oval.
Matt Hirschman has tossed his name into the ring and will no doubt be a creditable opponent. He won the season opening 100 and in his home state he is two for two, recently scoring a 75-lap victory at Evergreen Raceway.
In both those wins Hirschman was followed closely by Austin Kochenash who has three runner-ups at Mahoning and will be looking to advance those finishes by one.
Two-time and defending Mahoning champ Brian DeFebo is coming off his first win of the season and did so by beating current point leader Bobby Jones. Jones is a double winner in 2019 and has his car running well enough to make it three.
Kyle Strohl and Josh Scherer have visited Victory Lane twice and have plenty going their way to stop there a third time this Saturday as well.
John Markovic and Terry Markovic, Don Wagner, Anthony Sesely, Lou Strohl, Nick Baer, Ron Haring Jr., and Earl Paules are among the others who can clearly figure in as winners.
As an added twist the Modified feature will be a cone race format.
Joining the Modifieds will be the Late Models, Street Stocks, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks.
Front gates open at 4:00 pm. Adult grandstand admission is $18, $2 off for students, seniors 65+ and active military. Children under 10 are free. Pits will open at 11:30 am. Early paid practice ($25 per car) will be from 12:30 to 3:30. Regular warm-ups begin at 4:15. Pit admission $30 members, $40 non-members. Driver sign-ins will be from 3:00 to 4:15.
Mahoning takes a summer break on July 6 and then returns on July 13 with a 50-lap/$1200-to-win Late Model headliner plus there will be a special Mahoning Valley/Dorney Park Legends event to conclude the night.
Please log onto the official Mahoning Valley Speedway website at www.mahoningvalley-speedway.com or on Facebook at Mahoning Valley Speedway for updated info. Mahoning Valley Speedway is located on PA route 443 just a few miles west of Lehighton.
Daytona International Speedway has created great traditions over the past six decades, but none as important as honoring the military during events at the “World Center of Racing.” That tradition continues with the Coke Zero Sugar 400 Weekend, July 4-6, with numerous initiatives to show appreciation for current and retired military this Independence Day holiday weekend.
- Special Military Pricing: Military members and veterans looking to enjoy the stars of NASCAR on the high banks of Daytona International Speedway can take advantage of special military ticket pricing, which is available on military bases throughout the country and at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com/military.
- Toyota Operation Donation: On Friday and Saturday, fans can drop off non-perishable items at the Toyota Injector; the items will be included in care packages sent to American troops overseas.
- Military Appreciation Suite: Military members (with their military ID) and their families can stop by the Military Appreciation Suite and enjoy complimentary Coca-Cola products and snacks, as well as driver appearances, prior to Saturday’s Coke Zero Sugar 400, the midseason, midsummer Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race.
- NASCAR Salutes Presented By Coca-Cola: Daytona International Speedway will serve as the final event weekend of the NASCAR Salutes program. During Friday’s Circle K Firecracker 250 Powered by Coca-Cola NASCAR Xfinity Series race, teams will sport patriotic paint schemes and carry the name of a military unit across the top of their windshield.
- Medal of Honor Recipients: For the 11th consecutive year, DIS will salute Medal of Honor recipients, a tradition instituted in the 1970s by Bill France Sr., the founder of DIS and NASCAR. Two Medal of Honor recipients, Command Sergeant Major Gary Littrell (Vietnam) and Staff Sergeant Ronald Shurer (War in Afghanistan), both representing the U.S. Army, will be honored prior to the race on both Friday and Saturday night. The two recipients will also attend the drivers meetings and participate in an autograph session in the UNOH Fanzone on Saturday. The Medal of Honor is the highest military decoration given by the United States Government.
- Coke Zero Sugar 400 pre-race ceremonies
o Honorary Pace Truck Driver – Dr. Hal Kushner, a retired U.S. Army Colonel and Daytona Beach Shores resident who served in Vietnam and was held as a prisoner of war for 5 ½ years, will pace the field in a Chevrolet Silverado prior to the race
o National anthem singer – U.S. Air Force Captain John McKinney
o Presentation of colors – Patrick Air Force Base Color Guard
o Flyover – Two F-22s from Tyndall Air Force Base’s 43rd Fighter Squadron
o American flag – Over 100 active duty members from all five branches of the military will help display the football-field sized American flag during the national anthem
o U.S. Air Force DEP Ceremony – a swearing-in ceremony for cadets
- ‘Stand and Salute:’ Just prior to the waving of the green flag on the Coke Zero Sugar 400, fans will be invited to stand and salute during pace laps two and three while race teams stand on pit wall and wave American flags.
- 50/50 Drawing benefiting Veteran Tickets Foundation (Vet Tix): Vet Tix will offer a 50/50 Drawing from July 1-6 with the winning number being selected following the conclusion of the Coke Zero Sugar 400. The winner will receive half of the prize pool with the other half going to Vet Tix, a national 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides currently-serving military and veterans with tickets to events, encouraging them to stay engaged with local communities and providing them with positive experiences. Fans can purchase 50/50 tickets at the speedway on Friday and Saturday or online via their mobile device at www.Daytona5050.com (mobile device sales are open to anyone in the state of Florida).
Tickets for the Coke Zero Sugar 400 Weekend on July 4-6 and all Daytona International Speedway events can be purchased online at www.daytonainternationalspeedway.com or by calling 1-800-PITSHOP. Fans can stay connected with Daytona International Speedway on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube and Snapchat, and by downloading Daytona International Speedway’s mobile app, for the latest speedway news.
DMACC Partners with Chip Ganassi Racing and Iowa Speedway to Offer Exclusive Internship for DMACC Automotive Students24 Jun 2019 Written by Steven B. Wilson
Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC), the largest undergraduate college in Iowa, is partnering with Chip Ganassi Racing (CGR) and Iowa Speedway on a new internship program available exclusively to DMACC Automotive students.
DMACC students who are selected for the internship will spend 8-10 weeks at CGR Headquarters in Indianapolis, Ind., where they will have the opportunity to work on current NTT IndyCar Series and IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship racecars alongside professional racing industry technicians. The application deadline is June 28.
“This internship is an incredible opportunity for DMACC Automotive students who are passionate about racing and driven to work in the industry,” said Jerry Burns, DMACC Automotive Service Education Program (ASEP) and Automotive Technology Chairperson and Professor. “Careers in professional auto racing are very competitive, whether you’re a driver or an auto technician, and experience is key.
“Students selected for this internship will strengthen their industry qualifications and differentiate themselves by gaining invaluable, hands-on experience in a professional race shop.”
How DMACC Automotive Program students can qualify.
To qualify for internship consideration, students must meet the following criteria when submitting their application:
- Be a current DMACC Automotive Program student.
- Have completed a minimum of 30 credits in the following programs: Automotive Technology, GM ASEP, Mopar CAP, Ford ASSET, Diesel Technology, Caterpillar and/or Auto Collision seeking an AAS degree.
- Have a cumulative program GPA of at least 2.50 or higher.
- Have fully completed the Chip Ganassi Racing internship application.
DMACC Automotive students must submit all completed application materials by 4 p.m. CT on Friday, June 28, to be considered for the internship. Application information and materials can be found online at www.dmacc.edu/programs/automotive.
“Chip Ganassi Racing is very excited to partner with DMACC for internships that can lead to potential full-time employment of young mechanical talent,” said Mike Hull, Managing Director for CGR. “After a visit to the DMACC campus, it was easy to sense the passionate desire of the students to work within a mentoring system.
“The Chip Ganassi Racing Indianapolis workforce of over 100 is composed of long-term employees who learn with advancement through process. We’re about a long-term career in motorsports. CGR with its INDYCAR and IMSA programs provides vocational advancement unlike many race teams, so we’re multi-purposed. The depth of match will be a significant two-sided opportunity for both DMACC and CGR. The next generation is vital to our future growth.”
The internship selection committee will review applications in early July, and finalists will be invited to attend the NTT IndyCar Series Iowa 300 race on Saturday, July 20, at Iowa Speedway.
“We are thrilled to help support this unprecedented new internship program year-round with our partners at Chip Ganassi Racing and DMACC, especially as we see the passionate INDYCAR fan base continue to grow in the Midwest,” said Iowa Speedway President David Hyatt. “The DMACC Automotive Program is known for its excellence in training automotive technicians, while Ganassi is known for its excellence on the track in multiple forms of racing. The opportunity to align with both organizations is a win-win for everyone involved.”
Iowa Speedway PR
Madera Speedway’s exciting start to the 2019 season continues into Summer with Saturday’s Reverend Ron Spencer Red, White, and Blue Classic featuring MAVTV-televised Late Models and a huge fireworks show. The on-track action will include the fifth rounds for both the Nut Up Pro Late Model Series and 51FIFTY Jr. Late Model Series while honoring the late track chaplain Ron Spencer.
Drivers will be extra motivated to win against the patriotic backdrop and with the special tribute to one of the most popular members of the Madera Speedway family in track history.
Clovis’ Austin Herzog, 16, has been on a roll at the one-third mile oval. The third-generation driver has a win and a fast-time along with an average finish of fourth across the four Nut Up Pro Late Model races in 2019. Adding a fast-time and two wins in the non-televised Madera Late Model Series, and Herzog finds himself leading both the Pro Late Models and the combined “Overall Late Model championship”.
Herzog’s 14 point lead in the Pro Late Models comes ahead of 2018 51FIFTY Jr. Late Model runner-up Dylan Zampa, age 15 out of Napa, CA. Zampa won the season opening event for $5,000 to win and has finished in the top-ten in all four events. He has failed to qualify in the top-five in the last two races, however, which has contributed to his 14 point deficit to Herzog.
Two-time series champion and all-time winningest driver Matt Erickson is chipping away from third in the championship. Erickson has yet to win at Madera in 2019 but has crossed the stripe first on two occasions in Roseville this year. He is also the defending winner of this event. Fourth is Carlos Vieira who nearly won the season opener himself before tangling with Blaine Rocha. Ross Strmiska rounds out the top-five.
Upperlake’s Jeremy Doss is planning to join the action for the $2,000 to win, 80 lap feature, adding to the intrigue. Doss’ impressive career marks include over 30 SLM victories, two PCS championships, the 2018 SRL championship, and two runner-up SRL seasons as well. He successfully debuted a new car in Roseville, picking up the win before turning his attention squarely on Madera.
A new driver has emerged atop the 51FIFTY Jr. Late Model Series with hometown favorite 16 year-old Joey Iest of Madera, CA on top. Iest has a victory and a perfect four-for-four in podium finishes to lead the drivers ages 10-16 years old. The young talent has been hounded all year by Bakersfield’s Seth Wise who has a trio of third place efforts himself. Amongst a large pack of rookie drivers Wise has stood out by leaps and bounds.
Tyler Reif of Las Vegas was credited with his first win of 2019 and second win of his career on May 25th. He ranks third in the standings over second year driver Jay Juleson and Tanner Reif. Jake Bollman is the next highest 2019 rookie from the sixth position in the standings. April 2016 race winner Austin Edwards will driver for Herzog Motorsports in Saturday’s 70 lap event in a bid to challenge for another victory.
Rounding out the MAVTV-televised activities is the Mini Cups vs. Bandoleros. The Bandolero portion of the field has not had a repeat winner yet with all three grabbing their first career Madera wins. Ethan Nascimento won the season opener before rookie Dylan Baptista had top honors in the second event. Round three was won by INEX Bandits national points leader Hank Hall.
2018 champion Riley Massey leads the points by just one marker over Baptista with Nascimento in third. The Mini Cups are led by rookie Joey Kennealy.
The undercard on Saturday includes special 48 lap races for the Modified Super Toyotas and Toyota Sedans. Kurt Davidson and Purl’s Sheet Metal have posted a cash purse for the Sedan racers of $150 for first, $75 for 2nd, and $50 for 3rd for the special race.
Action gets started on Friday evening with practice from 5 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Saturday’s program begins with pit gates opening at 11:00 a.m. Practices run from 12:15 p.m. – 2 p.m. with qualifying and heat races to follow. The first set of features starts at 4:00 p.m. before opening ceremonies at 5:30 p.m. The fireworks show will take place at approx. 9:00 p.m. right before the final 30 lap segment for the Nut Up Pro Late Model Series!
Tickets for this great night of racing and fireworks are just $15 for adults, $13 for seniors, $7 for youth ages 6-12, and kids five and under are free!
For more information about Madera Racing on MAVTV please visit www.racemadera.com or www.mavtv.com. For more information on Nut Up Industries please visit www.nutupindustries.com and for more information about 51FIFTY Energy Drink visit www.51fiftyenergydrink.com
Madera Speedway is presented by major partners Nut Up Industries, 51FIFTY Energy Drink, iPull-uPull, and Color Fast Industries. Contingency sponsors include Five Star Bodies, Maita Motorsports, McCallister Precision Marketing, and StopTech Brakes.
Madera Racing on MAVTV airs Thursdays every week. The show airs at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. PST and is also available on the Lucas Oil Racing TV app. The second round of the 2019 Nut Up Pro Late Model Series airs on July 4th.
Madera Speedway PR
Incredible Savings at Talladega Superspeedway Calls for an Epic Experience during the Fall Doubleheader NASCAR Playoffs Weekend, Oct. 11-1324 Jun 2019 Written by Steven B. Wilson
Talladega Superspeedway’s upcoming NASCAR Playoffs doubleheader weekend, Oct. 11-13, is going to be an epic one, to say the least. Not only is the historic track celebrating 50 Years of Speed, but will also be highlighted by the completion of Transformation – The Talladega Superspeedway Infield Project presented by Graybar, featuring the all-new Talladega Garage Experience. And, beginning today, Monday, June 24, fans can be a part of the experience at a lower cost with the track’s advance-priced ticket offers.
Fans can save on countless ticket options for the “Wildcard” 1000Bulbs.com 500 Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series race, the second event in the Round of 12 in the series playoffs, as well as the Sugarlands Shine 250 for the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series - the first race in the Round of 6 in the Gander Truck Series Playoffs.
Advance-priced ticket options for the pivotal playoffs weekend are available for a limited time and include the following:
- $20 off race-week pricing for the 1000Bulbs.com 500 on Sunday, Oct. 13 – set for a 1 p.m. CDT start
- $10 off race-week pricing for the Sugarlands Shine 250 on Saturday, Oct. 12 – set for a 12:30 p.m. CDT start
- 2-Day ticket packages for both Saturday and Sunday start at only $50
Kids 12 and younger are also admitted FREE on Saturday for the running of the Sugarlands Shine 250, along with Foodland/Food Giant Qualifying for Sunday’s 1000Bulbs.com 500 that afternoon. For Sunday, Kids 12 and younger receive $50 off regular price grandstand and tower seats, starting as low as $15 (2-day packages as low as $10).
With a grandstand or infield admission ticket for that day’s on-track event, fans can reserve their pass into the one-of-a-kind Talladega Garage Experience (TGE), which will deliver extraordinary access where fans can be under the same roof that houses the race cars, teams and drivers as they prep their machines throughout race weekend. Advance-priced admissions for adults for Sunday in the TGE are just $89. There are also special advance-priced offers for the TGE for children 12 and under ($39 for Sunday), military members and first responders ($60 for Sunday). Full weekend options are available as well.
In addition, fans with a TGE admission will also be treated to incredible $4 or less Value-Priced Concessions (with the exception of the $9 Big One Meatball). It puts an exclamation point on the family/fan friendly experience that also includes: photo opportunities with the Vulcan and Freedom trophies in Gatorade Victory Lane, Kids Zone, Game Zone, entertainment stage for local music, Driver Q&A’s and other interviews, social areas, Gatorade Victory Lane celebrations after each race, FREE Wi-Fi presented by Xtreme Concepts, Inc., Sunday pre-race ceremonies and Driver Introductions at the Start-Finish line and much more!
Anyone holding a Sunday ticket for the 1000Bulbs.com 500 will also have access to the traditional Saturday Night Infield Concert, located at the intersection of Talladega and Eastaboga Blvds., featuring country music artist and Jacksonville, AL native Riley Green.
For more information on Talladega Superspeedway’s advance-priced ticket options for the track’s NASCAR doubleheader playoffs weekend, as well as the Talladega Garage Experience simply visit www.
Brian DeFebo holds off Bobby Jones for first win of '19; Mike Sweeney nips Frankie Althouse again in Late Models.earns 50th class victory23 Jun 2019 Written by Steven B. Wilson
As the season is reaching the mid-way juncture, it has become commonplace to see Brian DeFebo to have already won at least once if not several times, which has been his calling card to the past two Modified championships at Mahoning Valley Speedway. DeFebo is a 10-time winner in the prior two seasons here.
But a for a number of issues, those winning ways had been sidetracked, his best showing being no better than third, that is until Saturday night when he cracked the win column for the first time in 2019 which was a down-to-the-wire finish over Bobby Jones.
“It’s been a while it seems,” said DeFebo after taking his 102nd career win and 72nd with a Modified.
“We’ve been struggling here since the final two races from last year when we wrecked the car. We’ve been trying something new every week to try and get back on our hot streak and tonight it worked. I’ve always been confident and I know once we start winning one race we’ll begin to click off more and that’s fun.”
DeFebo, who started fifth, showed early on that his car was worthy, jumping right into second behind leader Ron Haring Jr., in just two laps. Four circuits later he was in front and pulling away.
As DeFebo was holding his own, Haring maintained second over John Markovic. By lap 16 point leader Jones had powered to runner-up, gaining the spot after a restart on that tour. That in turn set up what would become a hard fought duel the rest of the way between he and DeFebo.
Trying inside and outside Jones made every attempt possible to get past. There was even one moment where he almost lost control due to speedy dry that had been spread from a previous incident.
But after Jones regained his footing he then put heavy pressure on DeFebo and would try one last time when the final lap was underway, looking to the bottom in turns three and four but DeFebo throttled down and was able to eke out the victory.
“I knew he (Jones) was there and it’s always tough when you’re in the lead and you have to go to defense because you don’t know what line to be in and you wind up backing yourself up. I saw him on the outside and then heard him on the inside but we stood our ground,” said DeFebo.
“Bobby (Jones) is a great guy to race with. We seem to think alike and that’s why we get along both on and off the track. Where both here to win races.”
Josh Scherer turned in another solid performance with third while Lorin Arthofer II had a notable fourth place tally. Markovic rounded out the top five.
For the third consecutive week Mike Sweeney won the Late Model feature and for the third time it was under tense conditions with Frankie Althouse.
Sweeney wrangled the lead from one very impressive Avery Arthofer who had led from the outset. The rookie was in front for the first time and showed remarkable skill in leading a group of accomplished veterans in Sweeney, Althouse and Jeremy Miller.
Sweeney, though, began to apply pressure and made his winning pass by squeezing to the low side of Arthofer with just eight laps to go.
Althouse was soon to follow and over the waning circuits there was plenty of nip and tuck between the pair. Sweeney would hold tough – again, in what was hard-nose racing between he and Althouse.
“I’m going to have to invest in some new rear bumpers,” said Sweeney as he received a wave of cheers and jeers in Victory Lane. “Listen to this place, this is what Mahoning Valley is all about, the all-out excitement.”
This was Sweeney’s 50th career Late Model win at Mahoning and he’s quickly approaching the all-time mark held by Paul Koehler Jr.
Sweeney made note to the great run by Arthofer who settled for fifth, her second such in as many races.
“She (Arthofer) ran a great race and has been doing very well. She just gave up the bottom there a little which was enough that I was able to sneak it in for the lead,” offered Sweeney.
Althouse’s second place, his ninth top-2 in in 10 starts, keeps him ahead in the standings just slightly over Sweeney.
Randy Ahner Jr., erased a three year dry spell, winning his first Street Stock feature at Mahoning for the first time since 2016.
Ahner kept a close chase on Jamie Smith for a number of laps, just biding his time and patiently waiting for the right moment to strike. With eight laps to go he got that opportunity when he moved inside of Smith and was able to deliver the race winning pass. He then went on to his 20th career class victory over a fast approaching Todd Ahner and Shayne Geist.
For the second time in as many weeks and third on the season, Cody Kohler was the winner of the 20-lap affair.
Kohler passed Bobby Kibler Sr., on lap seven and was seamless the rest of the way in garnering his 23rd career win. Jake Kibler took second.
The Hobby Stock feature was one that will be talked about for some time as Kassidy Altemose not only won for the first time but it was in a crowd rousing battle between her and Travis Solomon.
In the final few laps each driver swapped lead not only at the start/finish line but several times around the track.
Rubbing and banging their way and at times looking as though a wreck was about to happen, they focused themselves on the checkers with Altemose nipping Solomon by inches for the thrilling outcome.
The Dirt Mod feature, under a cloud of controversy, was won by Mike Stofflet over Ricky Yetter.
However, after further review of issues that developed throughout the night, Yetter was disqualified for unsportsmanlike actions by his team.
Also, the class is being suspended and will not run until further notice.
Modified Feature Finish (35-laps): 1. Brian DeFebo, 2. Bobby Jones, 3. Josh Scherer, 4. Lorin Arthofer II, 5. John Markovic, 6. Lou Strohl, 7. Terry Markovic, 8. Nick Baer, 9. Kyle Strohl 10. Eric Kocher, 11. Ron haring Jr., 12. BJ Wambold, 13. Heath Metzger, 14. Don Wagner, 15. Ear Paules 16. Gene Bowers, 17. Jacob Kerstetter
Late Model Feature Finish (25-laps): 1. Mike Sweeney, 2. Frankie Althouse, 3. Samantha Osborn, 4. Geno Steigerwalt, 5. Avery Arthofer, 6. Rick Smith, 7. Jeremy Miller, 8. Kenny Hien
Street Stock Feature Finish (30-laps): 1. Randy Ahner Jr., 2. Todd Ahner, 3. Shayne Geist, 4. Jon Moser, 5. Randy Schlenker, 6. Jamie Smith, 7. Mark Martini, 8. Mark Deysher, 9. Cody Geist, 10. Eric Kocher, 11. Jared Ahner, 12. Steven Steigerwalt, 13. Rick Reichenbach, 14. Josh Mooney, 15. Tucker Muffley, 16. Dennis Buss, 17. Brennen Coulter, 18. Bobby Kibler Jr., 19. Austin Santee
Dirt Mod Feature Finish (25-laps) 1. Mike Stofflet, 2. Louie Horvath, 3. Devin Schmidt, 4. Corey Edelman, 5. Colton Perry, 6. Frank Parastino DQ. Ricky Yetter
Hobby Stock Feature Finish (25-laps): 1. Kassidy Altemose, 2. Travis Solomon, 3. Rich Mutarelli, 4. John Petro, 5. Ken Reeder, 6. Shawn Kistler, 7. Cody Kohler, 8. Al Arthofer, 9. Cody Boehm, 10. Tad Snyder, 11. Peyton Arthofer, 12. Jacob Boehm. 13. Peter Maier, 14. Eddie Jones, 15. Shane Troutman, 16. Ralph Boger Jr., 17. Todd Geist, 18. Daryl Rex DQ: Devin Schmidt, Trisha Connolly DNQ: Mallory Kutz, Austin Ahner
Pro 4 Feature Finish (25-laps): 1. Cody Kohler, 2. Jake Kibler, 3. Tyler Stangle, 4. Bobby Kibler Sr., 5. Tucker Muffley, 6. Jeremy Guerra, 7. Randy Schaffer, 8. Matt Clark, 9. Kadie Pursell, 10. Gary Schloch
Amid ongoing preparations to become “ROVAL™-ready” for the second running of the historic Bank of America ROVAL™ 400 on Sept. 27-29, Charlotte Motor Speedway officials on Sunday announced groundbreaking changes to the 2.28-mile road course oval’s backstretch chicane.
An expanded configuration of the challenging chicane will create additional passing opportunities and more side-by-side action – increasing the drama and raising the stakes throughout all 17 turns of the revolutionary course that will conclude the first round of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series playoffs. The chicane’s original layout was 32 feet wide at its widest point, while the new version will be 54 feet at its widest point and will feature additional runoff areas which were unavailable in its first iteration.
Speedway operations staff, who execute the oval-to-ROVAL™ switch, moved back parts of the inside wall near oval Turn 3 to accommodate more on-track space for the updated chicane.
“The Bank of America ROVAL™ 400 is all about excitement and creating memorable moments for our fans,” said Marcus Smith, the president and CEO of Speedway Motorsports, Inc. “Having our backstretch chicane upgraded will give drivers an additional opportunity to go for a season-making or season-breaking pass like we saw on the frontstretch chicane last year. Every turn matters on the ROVAL™.”
The new turns will require heavier braking and a sharper entry, but a wider radius promises to provide drivers with the ideal mix of risk-taking opportunities and a slightly increased margin for error on exit – if the driver’s entry is correct. The track distance and turn count will not be affected by the new layout, which featured input from NASCAR drivers Kyle Larson, Ryan Blaney and Justin Allgaier, as well as former Formula 1 racers Alex Wurz and Max Papis.
"My hat's off to Marcus and the team at Charlotte Motor Speedway for talking with drivers and industry experts as they work to further improve the ROVAL™," Larson said. "The changes to the backstretch look like they will help create an additional passing zone and make it that much more exciting for the fans. After last year's wild finish, I'll take every possible opportunity to gain track position and earn some points."
Construction on the chicane began this week and is expected to conclude in early August.
In addition to the restructured backstretch chicane, speedway officials also announced an increase in race distance for the Sept. 28 NASCAR Xfinity Series race. The 200-kilometer, 55-lap event will become the 250-kilometer, 67-lap Drive for the Cure 250 presented by Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina.
Bank of America ROVAL™ 400 tickets, weekend passes and upgrades can be purchased by calling 800-455-FANS or visiting online at www.charlottemotorspeedway.
Jeff Strunk gradually worked his way to the front of the pack from his ninth place starting grid until he finally advanced to second.
Kory Fleming, who had a sizeable lead built up, changed the lane he was running previously and this decision was a costly one. It allowed Strunk to reel him in and take the lead away on the 23rd lap. Encountering lap cars in the closing stages, Strunk and the others in tow bid their time to get past them. Strunk went on to score his third 30-lap TP Trailers NASCAR 358 Modified feature of the season. In addition to Strunk, the Modified division has five different feature winners including Matt Sheppard, Brett Kressley, Craig Von Dohren and Duane Howard. More than 40 Modifieds were in action on Saturday night.
Tom Miller came out of retirement after a two-year hiatus and led the 25-lap TP Truck Equipment Sportsman feature from start to finish to chalk up his first ever career victory. The 68-yr. old Gilbertsville resident finally conquered the one thing he wanted to do – win a feature at the 1/3-mile oval and it felt “wonderful” were some of his victory lane comments.
Joe Biasi Jr. led 19 laps of the 25-lap Wingless Super Sportsman feature until Steve Wilbur challenging from the beginning, made contact with him. Wilbur held on to win the 25-lap event with Biasi Jr. a close second. This was the first time the class returned in 31 years.
Providing the Modified and Sportsman feature winners met the necessary requirements, they received monetary awards from TP Trailers and a certificate from VP Fuels for product awards. The Dan’s Deli ½-way hoagie award recipients were Fleming and Miller. Last week’s feature winner Parker Guldin was the highest finisher in the Sportsman feature at 18th with a crate engine to receive and extra $100.
Kyle Kania, missing for a few weeks, wasted no time holding onto the early lead of the Modified feature from the pole position with Fleming, also out of contention for a while; Ron Kline, Brett Gilmore and Louden Reimert in pursuit.
The only caution of the race was when Clay Butler and Craig Whitmoyer tangled in the fourth turn with three laps completed. The restart resulted in a new leader when Fleming overtook the top spot. Reimert, Kline and Briggs Danner completed the order behind Fleming and Kania.
Fleming opened up a comfortable lead while a heated three-way battle for second brewed between Kania, Reimert and Danner.
Back further in the pack Strunk was inching his way to the front and it wasn’t until the 18th lap that he broke into the top five moving up closer as the race progressed.
For some reason, Fleming changed the line he was running which allowed the competition to reel him in.
By the time Fleming switched the groove, Strunk caught him to put his bid in the first.
The lead changed on the backstretch as the field crossed the line to complete lap 23 Strunk had the Keystone Racing No. 126 in first.
Strunk never faltered and chalked up his Saturday night 72nd career win. Chasing the ten-time Modified point champion across the line for their season best finishes were Fleming and Danner with Kevin Hirthler and Reimert completing the top five.
Heats were won by Brett Kressley, Reimert, Duane Howard and Jared Umbenhauer. Clay Butler and Tim Buckwalter won the consies.
The Sportsman feature saw Miller get the jump on polesitter B.J. Joly to set the pace in his 6-cyl. Powered No. 77T.
Dicing for positions behind Miller were Nate Brinker, Joly, Sean Weiss and Brad Brightbill, who started 12th and by the second lap was fifth. Brad Arnold soon joined the mix to try to get into the top five.
With 11 laps in the books and Miller continuing to set his rapid pace, he encountered slower moving traffic, but that didn’t deter him as the distance continued to grow.
Positions were constantly changing behind Miller with second through fifth now comprised of Brinker, Brightbill, Bachman and Arnold.
Miller never looked back once he was in front and went on chalk up a well-deserved victory trailed by Brinker, Brightbill, Bachman and Arnold.
Heat winners were Arnold, Miller and Weiss. Mark Kemmerer won the consi.
Joe Biasi Jr. grabbed the early lead of the Wingless Super Sportsman. Behind Biasi Jr., Wilbur, Rohan Beasley, Tom Savage and Eric Walker jockeyed for the remaining positions.
As the race progressed, the order was now made up of Biasi Jr., Wilbur, Bill Brian Jr., Beasley and Steve Drevicki.
Chris Henry brought out the final caution of many when he stopped along the homestretch with a trail of fluid coming from his car on the 19th lap. Biasi Jr. held his own on the restart with Wilbur trying feverishly to pass him.
With five laps to go, Biasi Jr. and Wilbur made contact and Wilbur was now in first.
Wilbur never looked back and went on to win the event trailed by Biasi Jr., Brian Jr., Drevicki and Beasley.
Savage, Craig Perigo and Wilbur won the heats.
Next on the Saturday night NASCAR schedule is a tripleheader show of T.P.Trailers NASCAR 358 Modifieds, T.P.Truck Equipment Sportsman and a second 2019 appearance for the Delaware Auto Exchange Mid-Atlantic Sprint Series. Racing on June 29 gets the green flag at 7:30 p.m. Adult admission is $18, youngsters 6 through 11 pay just $5 and kids under 6 are admitted free.
PA Sprint Speed Week featuring 410 Sprints ($10,000 to win) and 358 Modifieds on Tuesday, July 2. Start time is 7:30 p.m.
Coming up on Saturday, July 6th is the annual Firecracker 40 which this year features the Sportsman with the feature winner walking off with $2,000. The 358 Modifieds will be the second part of the doubleheader Holiday show.
T.P. Trailers Modified Feature (30-laps): 1. Jeff Strunk, 2. Kory Fleming, 3. Briggs Danner, 4. Kevin Hirthler, 5. Louden Reimert, 6. Kyle Kania, 7. Jared Umbenhauer, 8. Craig Von Dohren, 9. Duane Howard, 10. Brett Kressley, 11. Doug Manmiller, 12. Rick Laubach, 13. Ron Kline, 14. Alex Yankowski, 15. Kenny Gilmore, 16. Kyle Weiss, 17. Mike Lisowski, 18. Tim Buckwalter, 19. Craig Whitmoyer, 20. Ryan Brim, Dan Waisempacher, 22. Clay Butler, 23. Richie Hitzler, 24. Danny Erb, 25. Joe Funk III, 26. Brett Gilmore, 27. Ray Swinehart, 28. Steve Swinehart. DNQ: Skylar Sheriff, Ryan Lilick, Ron Myers, Mark Kratz, Dylan Swinehart, Ron Seltmann III, Frank Yankowski, Jordan Henn, Eric Biehn, Justin Grim, Steve Wilson, Bobby Gunther Walsh, Frank Cozze and Mark Levy.
T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman Feature (25-laps): 1. Tom Miller, 2. Nate Brinker, 3. Brad Brightbill, 4. Dean Bachman, 5. Brad Arnold, 6. Mike Mammana, 7. Brandon Edgar, 8. Brian Hirthler, 9. Andrew Kreis, 10. Kyle Lilick, 11. Kyle Smith, 12. Sean Weiss, 13. B.J. Joly, 14. Mark Kemmerer, 15. Jack Butler, 16. Chris Esposito, 17. Brad Grim, 18. Parker Guldin, 19. Jesse Landis, 20. Ryan Higgs, 21. Andy Clemmer, 22. Joey Vaccaro, 23. Jeff Bubori, 24. Ryan Beltz. DNQ: Steve Desmelyk, Derrick Smith, Jason Van Dohren, Kenny Bock, Nathan Mohr, Josh Adams and Lex Shive.
Wingless Super Sportsman Feature (25 laps): 1. Steve Wilbur, 2.Joe Biasi Jr., 3. Bill Brian Jr., 4. Steve Drevicki, 5. Rohan Beasley, 6. Craig Perigo, 7. Carmen Perigo, 8. Derek Shaeffer, 9. Eric Walker, 10. Tom Savage, 11. Todd Leonard, 12. John Stehman, 13. Eric Jennings, 14. Jason Failor, 15. Rich Mellor, 16. Ryan Rutz, 17. Luke Kenker, 18. Austin Lorah, 19. Chris Henry, 20. Eric Rutz, 21. Larry Drake, 22. Duane Nixon
Grandview Speedway PR
Brandon Ward left with the trophy on Saturday at Bowman Gray Stadium, but Jonathan Brown was smiling just as big.
Ward qualified seventh – and when the entire field randomly drew for starting position, he was set to start fourth. Frank Fleming of Mount Airy drew the pole for his start and shot out into the lead, with Ward quickly moving up to second.
Jonathan Brown of Winston-Salem and John Smith of Mount Airy elected to take on the Fans’ Challenge after qualifying in the top four: they would start in the rear and win $3,000 if either of them were to make it back up to top-four finish.
A few double-file restarts allowed Ward to challenge Fleming for the lead, completing the pass on lap17. The double-file restarts also allowed defending champ Burt Myers of Walnut Cove to make his way forward up to second – where he began pressuring Ward.
Ward defended his territory until lap 74 when Myers completed a smooth pass for the lead on the outside row. It seemed like the race was over for Ward, but he battled back to reclaim the lead on lap 90. Myers delivered some stiff shots to Ward’s bumper, but Ward held strong and grabbed the checkered.
“We had a really good car early, and it just went away on me. It got way too free getting in, but these guys don’t give up on me – I can’t give up on them,” said Ward. “I just felt like if I could get a good start and get back to the front, get some laps under us, get some bite back in getting into the corner, we’d be okay.”
Jonathan Brown flew from 22nd up to 4th to win the $3,000 in Fans’ Challenge bonus money. But just as exciting as the prize money for Brown was the performance of his car – and what that means for the future.
“The $3,000 is a nice bonus, but the main thing I’m happy about is building the car and making it better. I came last week after only having the car for two days, and we qualified seventh and got two top-fives,” said Brown. “We took it to the shop and completely rebuilt it – we finished up about one o’clock this morning. We came over all day long and busted our butts to make it better.”
“Tonight we qualified fourth, so we’ve gained on it,” said Brown. “I know we were as fast as or faster than the leaders. We had something to win with, for sure.”
Burt Myers finished on Ward’s bumper in second, with brother Jason Myers of Walnut Cove finishing third.
In the McDowell Heating & Air Sportsman Series, Justin Taylor of Kernersville slipped past Kyle Southern of Rural Hall to win in the first 20-lapper. In the second 20-lap race, Dylan Ward of Winston-Salem claimed victory.
Billy Gregg of Lexington won for the Law Offices of John Barrow Street Stock Series after spending all day struggling to fix his car. He got it race-ready just minutes before the green flag and held on to take the win.
In the Q104.1 Stadium Stock Series, Chuck Wall of Lexington and Chris Allison of Mocksville each brought home a victory.
BGS Racing PR
Ebeling Holds Off Potter For Super Cup Stock Car Series Win; Lane, Helton, Arnold, Austin Also Visit Victory Lane at Kingsport Speedway22 Jun 2019 Written by Steven B. Wilson
Ben Ebeling won the first of two Friday night’s Super Cup Stock Car Series features at Kingsport Speedway before rain washed out the second race.
The Hickory, N.C., driver, who swept Super Cup races at Kingsport in 2018, held off a furious charge by his former NASCAR Cup Series driver Mike Potter of Johnson City to win Friday’s 50-lap race.
Potter, 69, was running down the driver almost half his age when a late caution for Marc Jones’ blown motor bunched up the field. With the tires on Ebeling’s Ford Fusion cooling down during the break which included a red-flag stoppage, he got away from Potter’s No. 14 Chevrolet SS on the restart and drove away to the win.
Ebeling was a former driver for Potter, who still considers him a good friend. Nevertheless, Potter was disappointed to finish second, feeling he had the car and position to win if not for the late caution.
“I could have gotten Ben if it had gone green all the way,” Potter said. “He was better on the short run, but I was better on the long run. We drove each other clean. He drove for me last year and I’d race Ben as clean as I’d race anybody in the world. He’s my friend and a good guy.”
Ron Langdon from Long Island, N.Y., finished third in his Chevrolet after battling Potter tough for several laps for the runner-up position. Bill Ashton from Uniontown, Pa., finished fourth in another Chevrolet.
With the strong finish, Langdon extended his lead in the national point standings over Kevin Kromer. Potter moved to third in the national standings and pulled away from Jones in the Southern Division standings. The next race in the Super Cup Series is scheduled for July 13 at Jennerstown, Pennsylvania.
HELTON WORKS THE TRAFFIC
Keith Helton of Kingsport successfully navigated traffic to pull away to the win the Pure 4 division race which featured 24 cars.
Helton was challenged most of the race by Brandon Sutherland, who pulled into the pits with five laps to go. Helton had built up a big lead by that point over Josh Detwiler in the 30-lap, caution-free race to win by a comfortable margin.
“It’s a lot of fun when we can go green like that and show how we can work the traffic,” Helton said after his seventh win of the season. “It’s sometimes who gets the lucky breaks or luck of the draw on how you end on those situations. The more cars you have, it brings out more who looks ahead and who drives more by the hood ornament. You have to set people up way before you get to them.”
Bruce Crumbley rounded out the top three, followed by Bucky Smith and William Hale.
Doug Austin of Castlewood, Va., and defending track champion Jay Swecker of Kingsport swapped the lead multiple times in the Pure Street feature before Austin emerged with his eighth win of the season. Swecker held on to second as Tony Dockery made it a three-way battle for the win.
Dennis Arnold of Meadowview, Va., won his second straight Mod 4 feature, with Chris Amburgey and Billy Duty rounding out the top three. Trey Lane in his Dodge Challenger held off the Chevrolet Camaros of father and son Royce and Austin Peters to capture his third Mod Street win of the season.
Kingsport Speedway will return to its normal racing program next Friday night, headlined by the Late Model Stock division for the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series.