By Mike Leone


June 17, 2019               FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


(Sarver, PA)...Five months after the big announcement, it's finally time for the most anticipated event in the history of the Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Racing Series powered by Pace Performance.  The Sweeney Late Model Touring Series is set to join up with the World of Outlaws Morton Buildings Late Model Series at Lernerville Speedway for the "Firecracker" this Thursday (June 20) through Saturday.   The "Bill Emig Memorial" presented by Hovis Auto & Truck Supply will pay $10,000 to-win on Saturday night for the richest Crate Late Model race in the 13-year history of Crate Late Models in the Northeast!


The 2019 "Firecracker 100" will be the 13th annual edition featuring complete shows for the World of Outlaws on Thursday and Friday paying $6,000 to-win followed by the "Firecracker 100" on Saturday night with $30,000 on the line.  Now the RUSH Late Models will get their chance to shine in front of a huge audience at this crown jewel event.  Tickets are on sale through Lernerville's website at https://lernervilletickets.com/13th-annual-firecracker-100-june-20-21-and-22.


The RUSH Late Model portion will get underway on Thursday night with warm-ups and FK Rod Ends $100 "Shock the Clock" Qualifying.  Friday night will include $25 to-win FK Rod Ends heat races and the $100 to-win "John Buzzard Memorial" Dash, which will set the beginning rows of the feature lineup.  Buzzard was a former racer for Bill Emig, who tragically lost his life at Expo Speedway.  Saturday night will start off with last chance B mains followed by the 50-lap feature paying $10,000 to-win, $450 to-start and including with the $400 to-win, $200 to-start "Wheelman" non-qualifier race.  There is a rain date of Sunday. 


In addition to the $10,000 payout, the "Bill Emig Memorial" winner will also receive the beautiful custom lettered Zamp helmet by 5-time Lernerville Super Late Model Champion, John Flinner, a limited edition pair of gold $ drivers shoes from Velocita-USA, the sought after large hardwood award laser etched by great friend & RUSH engine rebuilder Steve Hendren, and a large winner's check. 


"I can't thank Lernerville and the World of Outlaws enough for allowing the RUSH Late Models to be part of the renowned 'Firecracker' event," expressed RUSH Director Vicki Emig.  "To be able to showcase our racers at what is considered to be one the country's premier Super Late Model events is truly an honor for all of us and I know our racers will put on a great show for the fans as they compete for $10,000.  We expect a very large car count with drivers traveling in from at least 11 different states plus Canada."


"On a personal note I honestly can't describe what it means to bring the 'Bill Emig Memorial' to the 'Firecracker' and back to Lernerville where the inaugural event took place in 1991," added Emig.  "To have this event pay $10,000 to win, which will be the richest ever event throughout our region since my involvement with crate racing, of course makes it even more meaningful.  As a car owner, my dad had a very long and storied history at Lernerville and I know he would be so proud to see that his love of racing and legacy continues on through this historic event.  I also have to thank longtime friend and business associate, Cliff Hovis, for bringing Hovis Auto & Truck Supply on as a major event sponsor."


Hovis Auto & Truck Supply is headquartered in Mercer, Pa.  Hovis has 17 locations throughout western Pennsylvania and expanded their business to include heavy duty truck parts and paint, body and equipment sales.   Hovis will have a display tent in the grandstand area.  Each night, fans can register to win a pair of tickets to the NASCAR weekend in Richmond September 20-21.  A pair of tickets will be given away on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night.


Defending Sweeney Tour Champion, Jeremy Wonderling leads the Series to Lernerville.  The Wellsville, NY racers has been hot of late winning three of the last four Tour races.  In addition, Wonderling picked up a Sweeney Weekly Series win on June 7 at Ransomville (NY) Speedway.  Wonderling has a 27-point lead on Jason Genco, who finished second in the 2018 points.  Drivers third through eighth in points are all in their first season as full-time Tour racers and include Kyle Lukon, Braeden Dillinger, Michael Duritsky, Jr., Ryan Frazee, Kyle Murray, and Logan Zarin.  Despite missing one show, three-time 2019 winner, Max Blair, is 10th in points over Canada Sam Pennacchio, who is touring for the first time.  Darrell Bossard is 12th.


The RUSH Late Model Tour events at Lernerville always draw great car counts and produce tremendous racing.  The 2018 season concluded at Lernerville for the DIRTcar "Steel City Stampede" when Colton Flinner fought off Tour Champion Jeremy Wonderling, Pittsburgh standout Daryl Charlier, and Mike Pegher, Jr. for his first career Lernerville win.  The 2015 "Steel City Stampede" attracted 54 RUSH Late Models, which at the time was an all-time Northeast record car count.  That number was eclipsed at the 2016 "Manufacturers Night" presented by MSD Performance at Tri-City Raceway Park when 58 cars turned out.  Will the 2019 "Firecracker" event set a new all-time record high car count for the 13-year history of Crate Late Models in the Northeast!?  The last time the "Bill Emig Memorial" was held at Lernerville was in 2014 when Chad McClellan was victorious.  


The majority of the RUSH Late Model weekly-sanctioned tracks throughout the entire region have given the class the night off to compete in this historic event, while other tracks will accommodate racers that choose to participate in the event.


The World of Outlaws and Lernerville Speedway invite RUSH racers to participate in the Fan Horseshoe/Corn Hole Tournament that will be held on Friday at 1 PM, as well as Saturday's LUNGevity Foundation Kick it to Cancer Kick Ball Game that will be held at noon at the football field.  The Foundation will also be setup possibly on Thursday and for sure on Friday in the grandstand area.  They are asking drivers to bring door panels, shirts, etc.


The new "$500 Club" presented by Zarin Truck & Automotive will be part of the event.  The top 15 drivers in track points at Dog Hollow Speedway and Pittsburgh's PA Motor Speedway will be eligible for the 5 $100 drawings at the drivers meeting. 


Precise Racing Products will award a $100 gift card for the "Pedal Down" Hard Charger that passes the most cars in the feature.  The TBM Brakes “Tough Brake of the Night” will award three bottles of Xtreme6 Racing Brake Fluid valued at approximately $45 along with a certificate for a discount off any TBM Brakes purchase.  RUSH Late Model Series Officials will also determine the Dirt Defender "Defensive Drive" to the driver that best defended his position throughout the event, and will receive a $40 product package each night. 


New contingency programs for the 2019 season include the "$500 Club", Sunoco 5-Gallon Race Jugs, and Ontime Body & Graphic "Spoiler Alert.  A Sunoco 5-Gallon Race Jug will go to the winner of each Tour race.  Ontime's "Spoiler Alert" will award a $150 spoiler to the eighth place finisher.  Combined these programs will influx approximately $800 of additional value into each Tour event.


Feature Payoff: 1. $10,000  2. $5,000  3. $2,500  4. $2,000  5. $1,500  6. $1,200  7. $1,000  8. $900  9. $800  10. $700  11. $650  12. $625  13. $600  14. $550  15. $525  16. $500  17. $490  18. $480  19. $470  20. $460  21-24. $450  25. $450 (Series provisional, if  necessary, must be in the top 15 of Tour points).


Non-Qualifier Payoff: 1. $400  2. $300  3. $250  4. $240  5. $235  6. $230  7. $225  8. $220  9. $215  10. $210  11. $205  12-24. $200.  Anyone not starting a feature will receive $125.


2019 Sweeney RUSH Late Model Touring Series points (only Tour members receive points): 1. Jeremy Wonderling 730  3. Jason Genco 703  3. Kyle Lukon 695  4. Braden Dillinger 660  5. Michael Duritsky, Jr. 659  6. Ryan Frazee 624  7. Kyle Murray 615  8. Logan Zarin 606  9. Bill Kessler 600  10. Max Blair 566  11. Sam Pennacchio 537  12. Darrell Bossard 498  13. Chad Sines 422  14. J.J. Mazur 402  15. Brian Knowles 322  16. Logan Roberson 286  17. Ross Robinson 270  18. Dale Hollidge & Matt Latta 254  20. Trever Feathers 243  21. Cody Dawson 233  22. Scott Gunn & Jared Kane 226  24. Paul Norman 217  25. Jamie Wrightsman & Dale McDonald 210  27. Jon Rivers 171  28. John Waters 152  29. Cory Sines 145  30. Beamer Guzzardi 80  31. Jason Knowles 77  32. Al Shawver, Jr. 70.


The pits will be open on Wednesday (June 19) to park race teams from 5-8 PM.  There will be someone to assist you to park on Wednesday as well as throughout the day on Thursday.  Pre-race tech and registration will begin by 1 PM on Thursday; however, registration will close between 2-2:30 PM for an event staff meeting with WoO and track officials.  The pits will be cleared at 3:45 PM and pit passes will go on sale at 4 p.m. 


RUSH warm-ups are slated for 7:05 p.m. on Thursday followed by WoO heats with our group qualifying to follow.  The entire weekend's schedule of events are posted here https://rushlatemodels.com/FirecrackerSOE2019.pdf.  For additional information, check out the event guide https://rushlatemodels.com/Firecracker%20Event%20Guide%202019.pdf.


You do not have to be a member of RUSH to compete only to receive Weekly and/or Tour points.  The entry fee for the event is $100.  AMB/MyLaps transponders will be used.  Westhold transponders will NOT work.  Units are available to rent for the weekend for $25.  Driver radio will be channel 454.000.


Precise Racing Products, located minutes south of Lernerville on Route 356, will provide track side service every night during the "Firecracker".  Precise will have the Hoosier Tires, Sunoco 110 and RUSH 91 fuel, as well as parts for sale.


Lernerville is a 4/10-mile high-banked clay oval located 11 miles southeast of Butler, Pa. on Route 356 at 313 North Pike Road, Sarver, PA 16055.  Lernerville is just 30 miles northeast of the Pittsburgh metropolitan area.  For more information, check out their website at www.lernerville.com or call 724-353-1511 (office) or 724-353-1350 (track).


Hovis Auto Wrecking, Inc. was first opened as a family business in 1952.  By 1969 their business had grown to include new parts sales and Hovis Auto & Truck Supply was formed.  Since that time, Hovis has grown to 17 locations and expanded their business to include heavy duty truck parts and paint, body and equipment sales.  For 50 years, Hovis Auto & Truck Supply has based their success on four key ingredients: their dedicated professionals, large inventories, quality name brand parts, and competitive prices. 

Hovis Auto & Truck Supply belongs to one of the largest automotive program distribution groups in the nation. As a member of Federated Auto Parts, they keep abreast of changes in technology and quality parts in today's fast paced economy.  Hovis is one of the largest distributors for each of its two automotive refinish lines: Axalta and Akzo Nobel.  
Hovis is also a member of Vipar, one of the largest independent Heavy Duty Truck Parts Distributor Programs in the nation.   Hovis' officers sit on advisory councils of numerous manufactures, allowing Hovis Auto and Truck Supply to be on the cutting edge of technology.


The Hovis Auto & Truck Supply corporate office and distribution Center is located in Mercer, Pa.  Hovis has locations in the following western Pennsylvania cities: Allison Park, Butler, DuBois, Emlenton, Erie, Franklin, Grove City, Hermitage, Meadville, New Brighton, New Castle, North Huntingdon, Oil City, Titusville, Wexford, and Zelienople.  All of the store are open Monday through Friday from 8 p.m. until 6 p.m.  All of the stores open at 8 a.m. on Saturdays have different closing times.   For more information on Hovis Auto & Truck Supply, check out their website at www.hovisauto.com and "like" their page on Facebook at www.facebook.com/HovisAutoSupply.


RUSH Racing Series is brought to you by Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC & Pace Performance along with the support of Hoosier Tire, Bilstein Shocks, Sunoco Race Fuels, Bazell Race Fuels, Insinger Performance, MSD Performance, Holley Performance Products, Hovis Auto & Truck Supply, FK Rod Ends, Wehrs Machine & Racing Products, Schoenfeld Headers, Jones Racing Products, TBM Brakes, Performance Bodies & Parts, Racing Electronics, Dirt Defender, Wrisco Industries, Frankland Racing Supply, Landrum Performance Spring, Ontime Body & Graphic, Trailer-Alarms.com, Bonnell's Rod Shop, Zarin Truck & Automotive, Sherwood Wheels, Alternative Power Sources, Precise Racing Products, Lincoln Electric, Velocita-USA, Classic Ink USA, CrateInsider.com, and Valley Fashions. 


E-mail can be sent to the RUSH Racing Series at [email protected] and snail mail to 4368 Route 422, Pulaski, PA 16143. Office phone is 724-964-9300 and fax is 724-964-0604. The RUSH Racing Series website is www.rushracingseries.com. Like our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/rushlatemodels and follow us on Twitter @RUSHLM.