WHITE & SOPAZ SCORE BIG 1ST SWEENEY RUSH LATE MODEL WINS AT GEORGETOWN & HUMBERSTONE WHILE ALVEY WINS 1ST IN POTOMAC MAKE-UP; CAREER 1ST SPORTSMAN MOD WIN FOR GILLESPIE; DIXON WINS 1ST EVER IN PRO MODS
By Jim Zufall & Mike Leone
July 5, 2017 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Pulaski, PA)...It was a very full holiday weekend for the tracks and racers of the Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Racing Series powered by Pace Performance over the last few days. Very little rain to deal with and a ton of action at every track! Several racers captured their season's first wins, while others continued their dominance at their respective tracks. All in all, car counts were very strong especially in the RUSH Late Models.
The weekend kicked off early on Thursday night where the RUSH Late Models and Pro Mods were in action in a Sweeney Weekly Series doubleheader along with the special Patriot (360) Sprint Tour event. Max Blair made his second start at the East Smethport, Pa. oval and is now two-for-two scoring the Late Model win over Kurt Stebbins in his first ever RUSH start at MCR. Third through fifth were Andy Michael, Kyle Murray, and Jason Tingue.
In Pro Mod competition, Steve Dixon improved on his runner-up finish from two month prior in the opener by picking up his first career RUSH Pro Mod win for Kelly Frederes. Chad Carlson was second in his first MCR start of 2017. Third through fifth were Vic Vena, Rich Michael, Jr., and Ryan Scott. Both classes will be back in action at MCR at their next event on Thursday, July 13.
Chris Fleming took his first ever RUSH Late Model win at Outlaw Speedway on Friday night. The victory was his second of the season in Sweeney Weekly Series action as he also won at Fulton Speedway earlier this season. Brad Smith, Billy DuBois, and Wayne Robertson followed Fleming to the line. A regular racing program featuring Autograph Night is on tap this Friday at Outlaw Speedway.
A RUSH triple-header at the Lernerville Speedway took place on Friday night as the Late Model Touring Series, Bicknell Sportsman Modified Touring Series and the regular RUSH Pro Stocks were in action. The Late Models made their first of two Touring Series visits with a strong field of 32 cars in the pit area. Russ King out-dueled an early battle with Series point leader, Bryce Davis, then held off standout Mike Pegher, Jr. for the $2,000 victory. NY racers John Waters, Jeremy Wonderling, and Davis were third through fifth.
The Sportsman Modified race was a touring event and paid dividends for patience to Anthony Gillespie. After spending his early career in the Mod Lites, Gillespie battled hard with Brandon Ritchey, swapping the lead until he took control in the closing laps for his first ever RUSH victory, worth $600. Ritchey settled for second with Kole Holden, Chas Wolbert and Josh Deems making up the top five.
In the RUSH Pro Stock cars, it was Tyler Dietz fighting off a very strong field of competitors for the win. Battling both his competition and a few more restarts than he’d like, Dietz held on for the win over a hard-battling group that included Corey McPherson, Jim Fosnaught, Aaron Easler and Joey Zambotti. The RUSH Pro Stocks return to action as part of a regular “Fab 4” program at Lernerville.
Another night and another win for John Mollick in the RUSH Late Model division at Pittsburgh’s Pennsylvania Motor Speedway. The 2016 defending champion got into an intense side-by-side battle with Daryl Charlier, taking the lead for good on lap 16 and going on to win by nearly a two second margin. Charlier held on for second with Justin Lamb, Michael Reft and Clinton Hersh. After a week off for Lantern-Fest Pittsburgh, racing returns to PPMS on July 15.
Allen Brannon continued his domination of the RUSH Late Models as he collected his sixth win of the season 20-lap main at Winchester Speedway on Saturday night. Brannon, who lined up seventh for the start, took the lead on lap 10 and drove off uncontested for his overall eighth RUSH win of the 2017 season. "I have to thank car owner Jim Stevens." Brannon stated. "I like it when the track is slick and he gave us a great car tonight, I hope we can keep winning for him and this team." Mike Franklin, Kyle Lee, Devin Brannon and Transton Stoner followed at the finish. Heats went to Devin Brannon and Kyle Lee.
At Fulton Speedway Jason Occhino would jump out to the early lead in the 20 lap RUSH Late Model feature opening a few car length advantage. At lap five, Occhino held a 10-car advantage while behind him Chad Homan, Bret Belden, Kevan Cook and Jason Parkhurst ran in a tight fight that would see Belden get turned around bringing out the caution. On the restart, Homan used the top of the speedway to blast into the lead. By halfway, Homan was on cruise control out front opening a half a straightaway lead. Occhino, Parkhurst, Cook and Sean Beardsley fought it out behind the leader. Over the second half of the race nobody had anything for Homan as he picked up his third win of the year at the speedway. Jason Occhino, Kevan Cook, Jason Parkhurst and Sean Beardsley finished second through fifth. Fulton returns to action this Saturday for autograph night.
Saturday night at Stateline Speedway in Busti, New York saw Centerville, PA’s Max Blair win not only the Super Late Model feature, but added a win in the RUSH Late Models to his night’s accomplishments. In the RUSH Late Model race, Blair started on the front row with Dennis Lunger, Jr. The two powerhouse drivers led the field to green with Blair the more dominant, at times holding a 10-second lead over the second-place runner. After a few cautions, one that unfortunately took out Lunger, Blair built a lead again besting the likes of Darrell Bossard, Dave Lyon, Scott Gurdak and Kurt Stebbins in his first Stateline start. The RUSH Pro-Mods were not in action this week. Stateline Speedway gets back to action with a Super Late Model vs RUSH Crate Late Model Mystery Team Race.
Michael Duritsky, Jr. continued his dominance of RUSH Late Model action at Roaring Knob Motorsports Complex. Duritsky won for the sixth time in just 10 starts this season at the Markleysburg, Pa. oval, and the win was worth $1,000. Robert Cossell IV crossed the line in second, but refused to allow RUSH to confiscate the engine for further inspection thus was disqualified, lost his points for the year, fined $1,000, and suspended from all RUSH comptition for 365 days. Moving up in the finish in second through fifth were Troy Shields, Andy Spooner, Bob Nelson, and Jeff Ferguson. It'll be another busy weekend for the Knob as they host Sweeney Weekly Series action both on Thursday and Saturday nights. Roaring Knob has already completed a Series high 12 feature events.
In the RUSH Asphalt Racing Series, it was excitement throughout the Late Model event at the Jennerstown Speedway which saw a nearly race-long battle between former champions Gary Wiltrout and Matt Sever until the two came together late in the race putting Wiltrout in the wall and sending Sever to the rear. Jeremiah Kuntz inherited the lead giving him two wins on the season. Barry Awtey, Brian Shipp, Todd Price and Mike Hemnminger made up the top five. In other RUSH Asphalt action, Pete Rech took the win over Zane Ferrell, Jason Busch, Patrick Waugh and Gary Scott in the Modifieds. The Street Stock feature went to Josh Coughenour with Lauren Butler, Anthony Aiello, Aaron Van Fleet and Jason Holder making the top five. Racing resumes at the Somerset County Pennsylvania asphalt oval this Saturday night.
Sunday night at Delaware’s Georgetown Speedway, it was Sparky White taking the win in the 20-lap RUSH Late Model feature event. The Independence Day Weekend special paid White $1,776 for the win- the richest in RUSH history in the "First State". White led every lap, but not without a serious challenge from Joe Warren near the end of the race. Warren settled for second with Cory Lawler, Matt Glanden and Austin Hubbard making up the top five. A strong field of 23 cars were on hand.
Sunday at Humberstone Speedway, Kyle Sopaz made his first start of the season at Port Colborne, Ontario oval and held off some of the best in the field in the RUSH Late Model feature. Sopaz made his way to the front and held off the likes of two-time winner Chad Homan, Brighton Speedway standout Brandon Mowat, defending champion Dennis Lunger Jr., and "Bilstein Bandits" point leader Sam Pennacchio. A season high 21 cars were on hand for the $1,000 to-win special. Racing returns to the Port Colburn, Ontario speedway this Sunday night.
A somber atmosphere hung over the Eriez Speedway on Sunday night as news spread that track owner and promoter Bob Rohrer has succumbed to his battle with cancer earlier in the day. The night’s racing, already a memorial race to the late Mike Farr had a very somber but respectful mood as all 154 cars in attendance made a four-wide salute to honor these great men of racing. In the RUSH Late Model part of the evening, Andy Boozel made his front row starting spot work to his advantage besting Dave Lyon, Max Blair, Kyle Zimmerman and Chad Wright for his second win in the past three events. A season high 22-car field were on hand. Racing resumes this Sunday at Eriez.
Old Bradford Speedway was the site of a first ever RUSH Late Model Touring event on Sunday night. Bryce Davis battled the ¼-mile bullring as he watched the rear bumper of John Waters for most of the race. Then, in a thrilling, crowd on its feet move, Davis got around Waters on the final turn of the final lap to take the $3,000 winner’s check. "We were running behind him the whole time and had our shots," explained the 26-year-old Hornell, NY winner. "I'm sure he'd have done the same thing to me right there. We came in there (turn four) and were pretty tight and got together coming out of turn four- that's racing.” Waters, Andy Michael, Jason Knowles and Brad Mesler finished out the top five. The Sweeney Tour resumes on Wednesday, July 12 in a doubleheader with the Bicknell Sportsman Modified Tour.
It was a double feature at Potomac Speedway on Monday night’s special holiday event took to the track. First up for the RUSH Late Models was the rained out on June 16th. Darren Alvey scored his first win of the season in the make up 20-lap event. He took the win over Matt Tarbox. Jamie Sutphin, Jeff Pilkerton and Darin Henderson rounded out the top-five. In the regularly scheduled race, Sutphin started on the pole and led wire to wire to pick up his second win of the season. Ben Bowie, Chuck Bowie, Timmy Booth and Mike Franklin trailed at the finish. Potomac Speedway returns to action on July 14th.
While Potomac is off this Friday night (July 7), Path Valley Speedway Park in Spring Run, Pa. has stepped up to allow RUSH Late Models a place to race in a Sweeney Weekly Series event.
Saturday night RUSH Late Model Sweeney Weekly Series member tracks, Delaware International Speedway, Genesee Speedway, and Pittsburgh's PA Motor Speedway all had the night off, but will all have the RUSH Late Models on the card this Saturday night. Sharon was forced to cancel the RUSH Sportsman Modified Bicknell Touring Series and "Manufacturers Night" presented by MSD Performance for the second straight Saturday due to torrential rains the day before. That event will be made up later in the year. The RUSH Sportsman Modifieds will not be on the card on Saturday's "Lou Blaney Memorial" at Sharon, and in fact have the weekend off.
RUSH Late Model marketing partners include Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC, Pace Performance, Hoosier Tire, Bilstein Shocks, Sunoco Race Fuels, Bazell Race Fuels, Insinger Performance, MSD Performance, Holley Performance Products, Earl's Performance Plumbing, Quick Fuel Technology, FK Rod Ends, Maxima Racing Oil, Schoenfeld Headers, Jones Racing Products, Alternative Power Sources, Precise Racing Products, ARbodies, TBM Brakes, K&N Filters, Lincoln Electric, Velocita-USA, Classic Ink USA, Rocket Chassis, Landrum Performance Spring, CrateInsider.com, RockAuto.com, and Valley Fashions.
RUSH Sportsman Modified marketing partners include Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC, Pace Performance, Hoosier Tire, Bicknell Racing Products, Bilstein Shocks, Sunoco Race Fuels, Bazell Race Fuels, Insinger Performance, MSD Performance, Holley Performance Products, Earl's Performance Plumbing, Quick Fuel Technology, FK Rod Ends, Maxima Racing Oil, Sherwood Racing Wheels, Schoenfeld Headers, Jones Racing Products, Alternative Power Sources, Precise Racing Products, TBM Brakes, K&N Filters, Lincoln Electric, Velocita-USA, Classic Ink USA, CrateInsider.com, RockAuto.com, and Valley Fashions.
RUSH Pro Mod and Pro Stock marketing partners include Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC, Pace Performance, Hoosier Tire, Bilstein Shocks, Sunoco Race Fuels, Bazell Race Fuels, Insinger Performance, MSD Performance, Holley Performance Products, Earl's Performance Plumbing, Quick Fuel Technology, FK Rod Ends, Maxima Racing Oil, Schoenfeld Headers, Jones Racing Products, Precise Racing Products, TBM Brakes, K&N Filters, Lincoln Electric, Velocita-USA, Classic Ink USA, CrateInsider.com, RockAuto.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.