MATT SHEPPARD WINS SPRING 100
(STEWART FRIESEN – 2013 ROC DIRT MODIFIED TOUR CHAMPION).
JAMES CORNELL COLLECTS IMCA MODIFIED EMPIRE STATE SERIES EVENT.
For Immediate Release
Re: April 13 Quick Results
MATT SHEPPARD WINS THE BATTLE/STEWART FRIESEN WINS THE WAR…MATT SHEPPARD ROC SPRING MODIFIED 100 WINNER…STEWART FRIESEN LOCKS UP 2013 ROC TITLE AT FIVE MILE POINT SPEEDWAY ON SUNDAY.
KIRKWOOD, NY…On Sunday at Five Mile Point Speedway Stewart Friesen proved the old saying, “Patience is a virtue” as he was crowned the 2013 Race of Champions Dirt Modified Tour Champion after the title race was postponed last fall. Matt Sheppard entered the day second in points and did his best to win the title by capturing the victory in the RoC Dirt Modified Tour 100. His best efforts came up short as Friesen finished third on his way to capturing his second RoC title. The victory for Sheppard and car owner Norm Hansell was worth $5,755 and the first for either at the historic quarter mile oval in front of a capacity crowd.
Friesen and Vic Coffey led the twenty-eight car starting field down to the start of the 100 lap RoC title race with Coffey immediately taking the lead. Unfortunately it would be short lived for Coffey as he spun with a mechanical problem in turn 4 while leading. Defending Five Mile Point Speedway track champion Mike Colsten was collected in the melee while the rest of the field took evasive action.
On the restart Danny Johnson raced out front of Friesen with Rick Laubach in pursuit. Sheppard wasted no time as he quickly advanced from his ninth starting spot with several three wide moves to break in to the top five during the early going. Sheppard powered past Johnson on lap 5 as he had no intentions of wasting a title opportunity. A number of minor incidents created numerous yellows during the first quarter of the race as Sheppard maintained his firm grip on the lead. As the race hit the quarter mark Laubach was now pressuring Sheppard for the race lead with Jimmy Phelps advancing from his tenth starting spot to third. Pat Ward was all the way up to fourth at this point after starting 22nd on the grid and Danny Tyler was fifth after starting in the 15th slot.
As the race approached the halfway mark Sheppard had stepped out from the field. An amazing battle for spots second through eighth took place between Laubach, Phelps, Ward, Tyler, Johnson, Friesen and now Randy Chrysler. A caution for a slowing Joey Colsten just prior to the halfway fuel stop bunched up the field. Phelps was now up to second place with Laubach, Ward and Tyler in the top five. The one lap race to the lap 50 fuel stop was more like a one lap dash to the finish as teams tried to better their standing prior to the approaching break. Ward made a valiant effort to better his fourth place standing only to have it backfire falling all the way back to ninth on the lap 49 dash. The last lap was a wild scramble as Tyler advanced to third past Laubach as well.
The ten minute fuel stop saw Danny Johnson drop out of contention with motor woes as only one team took advantage of the opportunity to head to the pit area to take a tire. When racing resumed the track had begun to lock down and teams were now gluing themselves to the bottom of the quarter mile oval. This allowed Tyler to work past Phelps for the runner-up slot on the lap 50 restart. The next forty-five circuits would go caution free as Sheppard tried to stay clean of lapped traffic and continue to hit his marks. On lap 85 Tyler began to show smoke from the motor of his machine and Phelps was all over him trying to reclaim second place. On lap 95 the caution would fly for Tyler as the motor finally let go. When racing continued Phelps kept Sheppard within distance but could not make a serious bid to take over the lead. At the stripe it would be Sheppard capturing his first ever Five Mile Point Speedway victory with Phelps, Friesen, Anthony Perrego and Brian Malcolm completing the top five. Randy Chrysler finished sixth followed by Laubach, Jeff Heotzler, Ward, Dan Creeden and Mike Mahaney.
A tale of two races…Despite numerous cautions the first half of the Spring 100 saw a lot of three wide racing with a number of drivers making huge gains in position…The large number of cautions certainly slowed the flow of the first half…The second 50 laps saw only one caution but minimal passing as the teams were locked on the bottom of the quarter mile oval…Randy Chrysler fielded two cars on Sunday and drove to his best career Modified finish anywhere coming home in sixth…RoC Asphalt Modified Tour driver and Ransomville Speedway competitor Erick Rudolph drove the other Chrysler car and dropped out of the feature event…Woodhull Speedway campaigner Donnie Lawson impressed during the first quarter of the race running solidly in the top five only to drop out of the action..Bright sunshine, strong winds and temperatures in the mid 70’s made for a fantastic race day for those in attendance but provided challenges for the speedway track crew…The track crew made several grooming efforts during the daytime conditions and the surface was much improved for feature action especially the first 50 laps of the RoC Modified feature that saw plenty of three wide action…
James Cornell led wire to wire in the 20 lap IMCA Modified Empire State Series opener for 2014. Modified driver Ken Titus recorded his first FMP win in several years by capturing the victory in the Crate Sportsman open event. Titus took the lead on lap 5 and went on for the $1,000 payday.
2013 RACE OF CHAMPIONS DIRT MODIFIED TOUR CHAMPION: STEWART FRIESEN
RACE OF CHAMPIONS DIRT MODIFIED TOUR OFFICIAL FEATURE FINISH (100): MATT SHEPPARD, Jimmy Phelps, Stewart Friesen, Anthony Perrego, Brian Malcolm, Randy Chrysler, Rick Laubach, Jeff Hoetzler, Pat Ward, Dan Creeden, Mike Mahaney, Mike Bowman, Danny Tyler, Joey Colsten, Larry Wight, Billy Decker, Danny Johnson, Tyler Dippel, Donnie Lawson, Jackie Brown Jr., Nick Petrilak, Richard Smith, Vic Coffey, Kyle Merkel, Bobby Varin, Erick Rudolph, Ryan Godown, Mike Colsten. Gamblers Bonus Split – Matt Sheppard/Nick Petrilak
IMCA MODIFIED EMPIRE STATE SERIES OFFICIAL FEATURE FINISH (20): JAMES CORNELL, Tyler Stoddard, Matt Cole, Jared Spaulding, Gary Smith, Gary Roberts, Tanner Harpell, William Ward, Mike Stoddard, Bump Scutt, Brian Steigerwald, Rich Green, Chris Fleming, Mark Griffin, Ken Buck, Bill Ward, Jason Tuttle. – Gamblers Bonus Split – Tyler Stoddard – Tanner Harpell – Doug’s Speed Shop $50 Certificate: William Ward.
CRATE SPORTSMAN OPEN OFFICIAL FEATURE FINISH (25): KEN TITUS, Alan Barker, Ivan Joslin, Ryan Olsommer, Mike Jackson, Nick Mady, Bob Bruno, Randy Gates, Rich Powell, Josh Keesey, Anthony Stockman, Cory Costa, Jeff Hunter, Denny Perbles, Brian Mady, Rick LaMont, Mike Traver, Nick Plumstead. DNS – Billy VanPelt – Gamblers Bonus Split – Mike Jackson - Billy VanPelt,
Next up – This Saturday - Southern Tier Open for Modifieds – 30 laps - $2,555 to win plus full program of racing – 6 p.m.
FINAL 2013 RACE OF CHAMPIONS DIRT MODIFIED TOUR TOP TEN POINT STANDINGS
AFTER SPRING 100 AT FIVE MILE POINT SPEEDWAY.
1. Stewart Friesen 601
2. Matt Sheppard 575
3. Bobby Varin 500
4. Mike Mahaney 472
5. Danny Johnson 457
6. Rick Laubach 423
7. Jimmy Phelps 345
8. Pat Ward 339
9. Billy Decker 329
10. Jimmy Horton 295
* For Stewart Friesen it was his second Race of Champions Dirt Modified Tour Championship. His previous came in 2010.
- Previous Race of Champions Dirt Modified Tour Champions -
2005 – Tie between Bobby Varin and Mitch Gibbs
2006 – Alan Johnson
2007 – Pat Ward
2008 – Pat Ward
2009 – Pat Ward
2010 – Stewart Friesen
2011 – Billy Decker
2012 – Danny Johnson
2013 – Stewart Friesen
For additional information please phone the Five Mile Point Speedway offices at 607-775-5555 or log on to www.fivemilepointspeedway.net for more.