GIBBS WINS SECOND, SPARKS, PERCIVAL, CLEVELAND AND GARVEY FIRST TIME FIVE MILE POINT WINNERS IN 2002
KIRKWOOD, NY Mitch Gibbs raced to his second 358 Modified feature win on Saturday at Five Mile Point Speedway. Ken Sparks, Jr., Randy Percival, Jeff Cleveland and Brian Garvey were all first time winners in 2002.
The Modified feature found Ed Harris out front for the first five laps. Seventh starting Dana Wagner quickly worked his way into second and then raced past Harris for the lead on lap six. Wagner then opened a comfortable lead. Meanwhile there was a torrid battle taking place from second through seventh as these positions were being swapped back and forth, lap after lap between, Rich Keehle, Butch Klinger, Dan Hineline, Mitch Gibbs, Mike Clapperton and J.R. Crouse. Those drivers were putting on a clinic, racing three wide, dicing it out all over the track. The caution flew on lap 19 when Hineline made contact with Klinger while they were running third and fourth. Both drivers restarted from the rear. On the restart it was still Wagner in front over Keehle, Gibbs, Clapperton and Crouse. Wagner looked like he might be on his way to his first Five Mile Point win but Gibbs had other ideas. Gibbs tried the bottom and middle grooves before going to the top of the track. Once he went to the top his car really came to life and he powered around Keehle for second. Two laps later he raced to the outside of Wagner to take the lead. Clapperton was the next car on the move as he worked his way into second with four to go and quickly caught Gibbs in lapped traffic. As the white flag flew Clapperton went to the bottom and looked as though he might get the lead from Gibbs. The move didn't materialize as Hineline spun in turn two, bringing out the final caution of the race. Under caution Wagners right front wheel came off, ending his great run. On the restart Clapperton stayed right with Gibbs. As they came out of turn four for the checkered flag Clapperton go underneath Gibbs. It wasn't enough though as Gibbs pulled him on the straightaway to claim his second win of the season. Clapperton was second ahead of Crouse, Glenn Knapp and Don Hart, Jr. Rounding out the top ten were Keehle, Ed Strada, Jim Potts, Jim Allen and Dave Locke.
Ken Sparks, Jr. led wire to wire to claim his first Five Mile Point Street Stock feature win. Fourteenth starting Brett Spoor, the winner the previous two weeks, hounded him during the entire race. Sparks was never rattled and claimed the victory. Sparks was second and was followed by Jerry Tonti, Pete Sobol and Greg McKernan. Sixth through tenth went to Jerry Liford, Jason Bartsch, Ralph Shoemaker, Jr., Tom Heeman and Fred Christ.
Jeff Cleveland dominated the Grand American Modified feature to claim his first career feature win. He led the whole race and lapped all but the top four cars. Two time winner Mike Stoddard was second ahead of Charlie Gilbert, Bob Chapman and Kevin Cole. Positions six through ten went to Jason Makosky, Joe Cole, Pete Hoover, Bill Hawkins and Tom Vasta.
Randy Percival took the lead on lap four of the Pure Stock feature and then held off Darl Ellis to capture his first win of the season. Ellis was second and was followed by Mark Aldrich, Bryan Lindsey and Todd Sutliff. Rounding out the top ten were Jack Champion, Bill House, Mahlon Shoemaker, Walt McClenon and Todd Houghtaling.
Brian Garvey scored his first career Figure 8 feature win. He was followed to the line by Joe Momma and Steve Dechow.
This NSA Sprint Cars will invade the Point this Saturday on French's/Interstate Auto Parts Night. They will join the full show of 358 Modifieds, Street Stocks, Grand American Modifieds and Pure Stocks. Race time will be 6:00 p.m., one half hour earlier than normal.
COUNTER POINTS The biggest field of cars performed in front of the biggest crowd of the season. ¦Cleveland and Garvey celebrated first career wins while Sparks won his first Five Mile Point Street Stock feature. ¦Once again the track was smooth, with three good grooves making for a great night of racing in all divisions.
358 MODIFIED FEATURE FINISH: MITCH GIBBS, Mike Clapperton, J.R. Crouse, Glenn Knapp, Don Hart, Jr., Rich Keehle, Ed Strada, Jim Potts, Jim Allen, Dave Locke, Billy Thornton, Dave Calaman, Butch Klinger, Chuck Kennison, Ed Harris, Tom Rose, Dennis Dietrich, Dan Hineline, Bob Conklin, Dana Wagner, Ray Menard, Art Bray, Joe Biasi, Bobby Puckett, Harry Marvin, Jr. DNS: Danny West.
STREET STOCK FEATURE FINISH: KEN SPARKS, JR., Brett Spoor, Jerry Tonti, Pete Sobol, Greg McKernan, Jerry Liford, Jason Bartsch, Ralph Shoemaker, Jr., Tom Heeman, Fred Christ, Randy Rolison, Guy Park, Byron Pitcher, Mike Mills, Jay Conroy.
GRAND AMERICAN MODIFIED FEATURE FINISH: JEFF CLEVELAND, Mike Stoddard, Charlie Gilbert, Bob Chapman, Kevin Cole, Pete Hoover, Bill Hawkins, Tom Vasta, Joe Novak, Gordy Isham, Scott Vanderpool.
PURE STOCK FEATURE FINISH: RANDY PERCIVAL, Darl Ellis, Mark Aldrich, Bryan Lindsey, Todd Sutliff, Jack Champion, Bill House, Mahlon Shoemaker, Walt McClenon, Todd Houghtaling, Harold Goodell, Harry Cook, Jr., Ted Baker, Jerry Whitmarsh, Shephard Blodgett, Jeremy Shaw, Mark Andrus, Roger Salai, Jim Ortiz, Fred Velez, Harry Marvin III, Bob Tyriw, Joe Plouse, Dave Bellis.
FIGURE 8 FEATURE FINISH: BRIAN GARVEY, Joe Momma,