|Race Results 8/31|
KIRKWOOD, NY…Don Hart, Jr. raced to his third 358 Modified win of the season in bizarre fashion on Fuccillo Ford Season Championship Night at Five Mile Point Speedway. Brett Spoor, Jeff Cleveland, Jim Ortiz and Steve Dechow were also victorious on Saturday night.
The 50 lap Season Championship feature for the 358 Modifieds saw R.C. Faigle take command at the drop of the green. The caution flew on lap three and 2002 Track Champion Mitch Gibbs’ night came to an early end with a broken brake line. When racing resumed Faigle continued to lead the way as Dave Locke, Don Hart, Jr. and Billy Thornton hooked up in a great battle for second. Their great battle ended on lap 14 when Thornton clipped the inside barrier in turn one and broke the front suspension. Faigle maintained his commanding lead with the new battle for second taking place between Hart, Alan Rudalavage and Rich Keehle. A 23 lap green flag stretch produced some tremendous racing between these three drivers as they swapped positions back and forth as Faigle opened up a half track lead. Faigle’s exceptional run came to a heartbreaking conclusion in turn three of the final lap when he spun to avoid Dana Wagner, who was turned around in the corner. That turned the race into a one lap shootout between Hart, Keehle and Rudalavage. At the drop of the green Keehle bolted to the outside and took the lead into turn one. Hart maintained the low groove as they ran side by side down the backstretch. Keehle held a slight advantage into turn three but Hart got the bite he needed coming out of turn four to pull ahead by half a car length at the line. Keehle was second ahead of Rudalavage, Glenn Knapp and Dan Vauter, with an impressive fifth place run. J.R. Crouse, Harry Marvin, Jr., Dave Rumsey, Brian Malcomb and Dave Calaman rounded out the top ten.
The Street Stock feature finish would determine the track championship between Brett Spoor and Ken Sparks, Jr. Ralph Shoemaker, Jr. took the lead at the outset with Sparks and Spoor close behind. Spoor tried all routes around Shoemaker, the 2002 Rookie of the Year. Shoemaker hung tough until Spoor made his move on lap nine. Meanwhile Sparks had an up and down race. After challenging for the lead early, he dropped back as far as seventh in the hotly contested battle. He then hooked up on the outside and went back to the front. He moved ahead of Shoemaker for second at the halfway point and went to work on Spoor for the win and championship. Knowing that whichever driver finished ahead of the other would win the title, Sparks stayed right on Spoor’s back bumper. Spoor was able to maintain his advantage and claimed the win and track championship by six points over Sparks, who wound up second. Shoemaker was third ahead of Pete Sobol and Jerry Tonti. Sixth through tenth went to Don Russell, Pat Nolan, Fred Christ, Brian MacRabie and Dan Podwika.
The Grand American Modified feature saw Jeff Cleveland waste no time taking the lead. Cleveland trailed Bob Chapman and Mike Stoddard by six points going into the race. He would need to win and have the two of them finish at least two spots behind him. Stoddard and Chapman also knew what they had to do and they quickly took over second and third respectively. Neither driver was able to challenge Cleveland for the win and Stoddard held a comfortable advantage over Chapman at the finish. Cleveland would win his ninth feature of the year but fell one point shy of the championship. Stoddard’s second place finish locked up his first title in 19 years of racing. Chapman had to settle for third after leading the points for most of the season. Charlie Gilbert and Kevin Cole rounded out the top five. Positions six through ten went to Joel Batzel, Joe Novak, Danny Ody, Doug Tiffany and Joe Cole.
The Pure Stocks also had a thrilling conclusion to their point title. Randy Percival trailed Mahlon Shoemaker by 29 points going into the night. Jim Ortiz raced to the early lead with Percival right alongside him for many laps. Shoemaker was back in ninth when he got involved in a homestretch crash at the halfway point. Shoemaker suffered only cosmetic damage but was now facing an uphill battle to maintain his point lead. With Ortiz and Percival still out front, Shoemaker came from the back of the pack, trying feverously to get close enough to win the points. Ortiz took the win by half a car length over Percival. Shoemaker was able to get back up to seventh, which was enough to give him the point title by six points over Percival. Roger Salai came home third in the feature ahead of Bryan Lindsey and Darl Ellis. Sixth through tenth went to Mike Lartz, Shoemaker, Dave Husnay, Bob Tyriw and Harry Marvin III.
Brian Garvey only needed to take the green to clinch the Figure 8 championship. Steve Dechow took the feature win with Garvey second and Buzz Barton third. Garvey was crowned track champ.
The next event on the schedule is the annual National Quarter Mile Dirt Track Championship Weekend on Friday and Saturday, September 27th and 28th. Friday’s show consists of the B&D Exhaust Southern Tier Championships for Sportsman, Street Stocks, Grand American Modifieds and Four Cylinder Stocks beginning at 7:00 p.m. Saturday is highlighted by the Binghamton Pepsi-Cola Southern Tier 100 for 358 Modifieds along with the Northeast Pure Stock Championship. Race time on Saturday is 6:00 p.m. For further information please call the speedway office at 607-775-5555 or log onto our website at www.fivemilepointspeedway.net.
COUNTER POINTS…Ironically the top five finishers in both the Street Stock and Grand American features came across in the same order they did in the final points…Jake Racing and The Guardian Warranty Corporation gave away bicycles to a boy and a girl. The winners were Christy Dunn and WilliamTurner…2002 Most Popular Driver winners were Rich Keehle (Mod), Brett Spoor (SS), Jason Makosky (GAM), Harry Marvin III (PS) and Bubba Folk (Fig 8)…Brian Garvey proposed to his girlfriend prior to the start of the Figure 8 feature; she said yes.
FUCCILLO FORD 358 MODIFIED SEASON CHAMPIONSHIP FEATURE FINISH:
DON HART, JR., Rich Keehle, Alan Rudalavage, Glenn Knapp, Dan Vauter, J.R. Crouse, Harry Marvin, Jr., Dave Rumsey, Brian Malcomb, Dave Calaman, Dave Locke, Ed Harris, R.C. Faigle, Mike Mondak, Dana Wagner, Chris Ostrowsky, Billy Thornton, Ray Menard, Butch Klinger, Jim Potts, Dan Hineline, Ted Stout, Art Bray, Mitch Gibbs. DNQ: Danny West, Tony Reggie.
STREET STOCK SEASON CHAMPIONSHIP FEATURE FINISH:
BRETT SPOOR, Ken Sparks, Jr., Ralph Shoemaker, Jr., Pete Sobol, Jerry Tonti, Don Russell, Pat Nolan, Fred Christ, Brian MacRabie, Dan Podwika, Byron Pitcher, Bob Teribury, Fred Velez, Jason Bartsch, Scott Chapman, Jerry Liford, Lyle Williams, Jack Evans, Dave Nixon, Randy Rolison.
GRAND AMERICAN MODIFIED SEASON CHAMPIONSHIP FEATURE FINISH:
JEFF CLEVELAND, Mike Stoddard, Bob Champman, Charlie Gilbert, Kevin Cole, Joel Batzel, Joe Novak, Danny Ody, Doug Tiffany, Joe Cole.
PURE STOCK SEASON CHAMPIONSHIP FEATURE FINISH:
JIM ORTIZ, Randy Percival, Roger Salai, Bryan Lindsey, Darl Ellis, Mike Lartz, Mahlon Shoemaker, Dave Husnay, Bob Tyriw, Harry Marvin III, Harry Cook, Jr., Don Donnelly, Jr., Scott McGonigle, Jerry Whitmarsh, Todd Sutliff, Walt McClenon, Corey Bond, Ted Baker, Jeremy Shaw.
FIGURE 8 SEASON CHAMPIONSHIP FEATURE FINISH:
STEVE DECHOW, Brian Garvey, Buzz Barton.