FOR RELEASE:
March 6th, 2011

 

2010 Champions Crowned At Annual Awards Dinner.

 

- Friesen Announces Plans To Defend Crown In 2011 -

The Dominator: Stewart Friesen Honored For 10-Win Five Mile Point Speedway Modified Championship Season

 

By BRETT DEYO
BINGHAMTON, NY -
Dominant.

No other word more accurately describes the 2010 season Stewart Friesen put together at Five Mile Point Speedway, during the 60th anniversary season of the Kirkwood, N.Y., oval.

Friesen was lauded as the 2010 Five Mile Point Modified champion Friday night at the Riverwalk Hotel in Binghamton, N.Y. More than 400 drivers, car owners, media members, sponsors and race enthusiasts were on hand for the awards ceremony following a buffet-style dinner.
Friesen, 27, of Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont., won an astounding 10 features at the racy quarter-mile oval en route to the championship, worth $6,000. Friesen's efforts at Five Mile Point played a key role in his runner-up result to Duane Howard in the American Racer East Coast Modified Cup.
For the season's first six weeks, Friesen went undefeated at FMP before ultimately finishing third in a feature on June 19 to end the streak. He won the final two events of the season, including the extra-distance Season Championship Night event Sept. 4, to claim the championship.
Friesen drove a Tadd Parks-owned No. 1 Teo-Pro mount during the history-making season.
Upon accepting his championship hardware, Friesen announced he would defend the title in 2011, again racing as a weekly regular at the 61-year-old facility owned and promoted by Andrew Harpell.


Friesen ultimately defeated runner-up Kevin Bates by 97 points (884-787). Lake Ariel, Pa.'s Bates - a winner once during the season on July 17 - placed a respectable second in his first full season running weekly at Five Mile Point.
Former champion Brian Weaver of Windsor, N.Y., who reunited with car owner Randy Decker mid-season, finished third with 756 points. Shaun Walker of Masonville, N.Y. (705) and veteran Mike Colsten of Binghamton, N.Y. (703) completed the front five.
Finishing sixth through 10th, respectively, were Jim Gabriel Jr. of Binghamton, N.Y. (698), Nick Rochinski of Dickson City, Pa. (631), Brian Malcolm of Lake Ariel, Pa. (617), Brent Wilcox of Whitney Point, N.Y. (614) and Brian Puckett of Old Forge, Pa. (593).
Mike Loney of Taylor, Pa., earned the Sportsman track championship for 2010, defeating full-fender graduate Chris Wood of Kirkwood, N.Y., by 15 markers (1026-1011) at year-end. Loney won the title via consistency. He never won a feature during the season.
Wood, who won back-to-back main events in July, settled for second. Justin Holland of White Lake, N.Y., was third (1008), ahead of Nick Petrilak of Greenfield Township, Pa. (994) and Race of Champions Dirt Sportsman title winner Jeff Crambo of Throop, Pa. (973).
Popular Charlie Gilbert of Binghamton, N.Y., was recognized as the Street Stock champion and announced his plans to move into the IMCA-Modified division at FMP. Other champions honored were Mike Smith (IMCA), Dan Wood (Lightning Cat Expert), Duane Kinne (Lightning Cat Novice) and Rob Warner (Figure 8).


Ten drivers were added to the Five Mile Point 50 greatest drivers, bringing the total to 60 for the speedway's 60th year of operation. Additions were Billy Decker, Mitch Gibbs, Gordie Isham, Gary Dence, Charlie Gilbert, Danny Johnson, Brian Weaver, Stewart Friesen, Red Harrington and Gary Roberts.
The prestigious Glenn Knapp Sr. Owner of the Year Award, presented by the Knapp family, went to IMCA-Modified racer Gary Dence.
Andrew Harpell's 'Head of the Class' Award went to Chris Clark, the unassuming owner for Modified racer Brent Wilcox.

Other special awards included:
Best Appearing - Brent Wilcox (Modified), Jamie Batzel (Sportsman), Cody Decker (Street Stock), Scott Bennett (IMCA), Dennis Keesler (Lightning Cat Expert) and Troy Kress (Lightning Cat Novice)
Most Improved Driver - Brian Malcolm (Modified), Chris Wood (Sportsman), Joe Warren (Street Stock), Scott Bennett (IMCA), Jeff Hayes (Lightning Cat Expert) and Duane Kinne (Lightning Cat Novice)
Hard Luck Award - Eric Palmer (Modified), Jerry Tonti (Sportsman), Todd Sutliff (Street Stock), Patti Simpson (IMCA), Lightning Cat Expert (Dave Simms) and Jerry Tunney (Lightning Cat Novice)
Rookie of the Year – Brian Puckett(Modified), Bryan Batzel (Sportsman), Cody Decker (Street Stock), Matt Roberts (IMCA), Tyler Harpell (Lightning Cat Expert) and Tanner Harpell (Lightning Cat Novice).
The 61st Five Mile Point season opens Sunday, April 10 with the RoC Sportsman and Street Stocks, Lightning Cats and XCel 600 Modifieds. The Southern Tier Open for Modifieds (40 laps, $2,500 to win) is set for April 16 joined by points openers for Sportsman, Street Stocks, IMCA Modifieds and Lightning Cats.