By Mike Leone


October 6-7, 2017               FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


(Imperial, PA)...The Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Dirt Late Model Touring Series powered by Pace Performance joined up with the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series once again for the 29th annual "Pittsburgher 100" on Friday and Saturday night.  Sweeney Tour race #14 of the 2017 season attracted 36 teams from all over Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, New York, and Ontario, Canada for the running of the annual "Bill Hendren Memorial", which was won by Daryl Charlier while Jamie Wrightsman captured the non-qualifier.


In addition to the event purse and normal RUSH contingencies, $3,000 in cash plus $100 in contingencies was distributed with $100 per feature lap going to various positions thanks to the efforts by the Hendren Family.  The complete list of donors and winners are posted below.  A special thanks to Steve Hendren, his son Alex, and Kate Dillon of CrateInsider.com, who drove up seven hours from North Carolina to be part of the "Bill Hendren Memorial" once again at Pittsburgh.  Steve also made laser etched awards for the top three feature finishers, all of the heat race, dash, and B main winners along with the hard charger.  It was confirmed that the "Bill Hendren Memorial" will return for the 30th annual "Pittsburgher" on October 5-6, 2018.


After defending Series champion, John Waters, hit the wall, Daryl Charlier inherited the lead on lap three, withstood a spirited battle with Russell King for much of the event then kept standout Max Blair at bay in the final laps to capture his first career Sweeney Tour win.  Charlier, who has raced Super Late Models, E-Mods, and Stock Cars over the years, earned $2,500 for his biggest career payday in the "Bill Hendren Memorial".  Charlier became the eighth different Tour winner of the season and 29th all-time.  Charlier was also selected as the Maxima Racing Oils "Maximum Performance" award winner. 


"This is definitely the biggest win I've ever had," stated the 33-year-old Midway, Pa. driver.  "I won the Pittsburgher in a Modified, but this one definitely paid more.  I really don't know how to describe this; my crew is excited, my sponsors are excited.  I tried the Super Late Models, but I really couldn't afford it.  I'd rather race something than nothing.  This class is really growing.  The races are exciting and just as good as the Lucas Oil shows.  I'm glad to get this win.  I'm glad Steve and Alex (Hendren) are here.  I appreciate everything."


Andrew Satterlee earned the pole for the feature via his K&N Dash win, but it was Waters using the outside to blast into the lead with fourth starting Charlier following in second.  Waters, who was tied for the point lead with Bryce Davis entering the event, got into the wall hard on lap three all by himself and luckily everyone was able to avoid hitting him.  Waters was awarded the TBM Brakes "Tough Brake of the Night". 


Charlier now inherited the lead with Satterlee to second, but when racing resumed, King, Jeremy Wonderling, Davis, and John Mollick were all able to get by Satterlee for second through fourth.  Following a spin for Canadian Colton Ledingham in his first ever Pittsburgh start, King and 16th starting Mollick were able to get past Wonderling for second and third on lap five.


King closed in on Charlier on lap seven.  After moving up 13 spots in 11 laps, Mollick slowed and exited the event moving Wonderling, Davis, and Ryan Montgomery into spots three through five.  By lap 14, Charlier opened up some ground on King in lapped traffic; however, three laps later King made a bid on the inside to overtake the high flying Charlier with a slide job, but Charlier was able to maintain his lead.


Max Blair was subbing for long-time rival Mike Pegher, Jr. in Brian Swank's #RJ1.  After a poor qualifying effort, Blair was able to advance four spots in his heat race on Friday, which lined him up 14th for the feature.  Blair was making headway slowing picking off cars during the long green flag run.  Blair passed Montgomery for fifth on lap 19 then three laps later got by Davis for fourth before Davis exited the event with overheating issues.  This will set up another championship battle between him and Waters next weekend at Lernerville.


Back up front, the race for the lead between Charlier and King heated back up.  The two raced side-by-side for the lead on laps 25-27 with Charlier continuing to barely lead; however, trouble struck when the two were at the end of the backstretch set to enter turn three on lap 27 when contact was made between King and the lapped car of Justin Lamb, which ended both those racers' nights.


This would setup a four-lap shootout to the finish.  Blair overtook Wonderling for second on the restart, while it was three-wide for third between Wonderling, Montgomery, and Garrett Paugh as Montgomery got the spot.  Charlier was too strong as Blair was unable to make a bid, and Charlier took the checkered flag by a margin of 1.916 in his   Tri-State Motorsports/Bud's/Kane's Ideal Truck Service/NAPA Auto Parts/McDonald Auto Supply/Knuckleheads Pizza/Donaldson Supply Company-sponsored #12.  The victory for Charlier was his second straight at Pittsburgh and fifth of the season. 


"I was surprised he was having such a good run," explained Charlier on King.  "He was on the inside and I didn't know if I should go high or low especially in (turns) three and four.  I know I'm always good up high in (turns) one and two, but I just stuck to the high side.  I don't know what happened on the backstretch with him and Justin Lamb, but I got rooted pretty good in the left rear and luckily everything stayed up."


It was just Blair's fourth Sweeney Tour start of 2017 for the 2015 Series champion as he's now finished in the top two of all four races he's run this season.  Blair earned $1,200 for the runner-up finish along with $300 in Hendren bonus monies for a $1,500 payday one week after his $1,500 McKean County Raceway Sweeney Tour win.


"I can't thank Jerry (Haseleu) and Brian (Swank) enough for letting me drive this thing," expressed the 27-year-old Centerville, Pa. driver.  "It was a lot of fun this weekend- I loved it.  Hopefully if they ever need a driver again they will call me and won't forget my number.  I have to thank Pegher too for stepping out for this race and letting me drive."


Montgomery, the 2015 Series champion, made his first Tour start of the season and was able to finish third after starting ninth.  Wonderling was fourth as he'll enter Lernerville with still a mathematical shot at the championship.  Christian Schneider turned in a career best Tour effort finishing fifth after starting 21st to earn the $100 Precise Racing Products "Pedal Down" hard charger gift card.  Schneider also added $200 in Hendren bonus monies. 


Paugh had an impressive performance racing from the 18th starting spot to finish sixth in his first Tour start since April 18, 2015 at Roaring Knob Motorsports Complex.  Ben Policz was seventh over Kyle Lukon.  After breaking his wrist and destroying his car at last year's event, Michael Reft, finished ninth and was in the right spot at the right time on five laps to collect $500 part of the Hendren bonuses!  Zach Kane, who started 24th, made his way up to 10th for his best career Tour finish. 


Jamie Wrightsman ended the night leading all six laps of the non-qualifier to earn $200.  The 27-year-old Cortland, Ohio driver of the Hover Racing Inc./Quaker Steak & Lube Warren/Cortland/Holko Roofing/King Sanitary/

Russ King Racing/Hovis Tire/Reese Pavement Sealing-sponsored #21J now has three non-qualifier wins tying him with Zack Carley for tops all-time.  Brothers Chad and Cory Sines finished second and third over Andy Spooner. 


On Friday, Waters set fast time in FK Rod Ends "Shock the Clock" Qualifying to earn $100 and then went out and won the first $25 FK Rod Ends heat race.  Other $25 FK Rod End heat winners on Friday were Davis, Charlier, and Lukon.  Schneider and Jason Knowles won Saturday's last chance B mains.  In his first start of the season, Satterlee won the K&N "Cold Air Induction" Dash to become the 10th different winner in 14 races.  Satterlee earned a $100 K&N certificate.  Waters picked up a $50 K&N certificate for finishing second.  Wonderling and Charlier added $25 cash for their third and fourth place finishes.     


The Sweeney Tour closes out the 2017 season this Friday and Saturday night (October 13-14) with the "Steel City Stampede"  at Lernerville Speedway in Sarver, Pa.  Friday will feature $100 FK Rod Ends "Shock the Clock Qualifying" and $25 to-win FK Rod Ends heat races.  Saturday will be the K&N Dash, last chance B main(s), $2,000 to-win feature, and the $175 to-win Non-Qualifier.  There will be an open practice on Thursday night.  There's a rain date of Sunday.


Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Late Model Touring Series Race #14 "Bill Hendren Memorial" (30 laps, $2,500 to-win): 1. DARYL CHARLIER (12)  2. Max Blair (Swank RJ1)  3. Ryan Montgomery (12)  4. Jeremy Wonderling (3J)  5. Christian Schneider (Maniewki 1ST)  6. Garrett Paugh (03)  7. Ben Policz (14B)  8. Kyle Lukon (184)  9. Michael Reft (9R)  10. Zach Kane (10)  11. Bruce Hordusky, Jr. (3)  12. Jason Knowles (4)  13. Brian Knowles (7)  14. Chuck Medved (2M)  15. Tony White (27T)  16. Russell King (56)  17. Justin Lamb (93x)  18. Bryce Davis (94)  19. Nico Dabecco (F1)  20. Bill Kessler (09)  21. Andrew Satterlee (2)  22. John Mollick (60M)  23. Brian Swank (12s)  24. Colton Ledingham (19JR)  25. John Waters (LeBarron 11)  26. Clinton Hersh (16).  (Note: Tony White took a Tour provisional & Bill Kessler took a Track provisional).


Non-Qualifier (6 laps, $200 to-win): 1. Jamie Wrightsman (21J)  2. Chad Sines (15)  3. Cory Sines (90)  4. Andy Spooner (3)  5. Pete Wearing (111)-DNS  6. Jared Kane (7)-DNS  7. Zach Gunn (114G)-DNS  8. Chuck Recker (6)-DNS  9. Russ Matejka (17M)-DNS  10. Paul Jablonski (3J)-DSQ.


Car Count: 36

Margin of Victory: 1.916 seconds

Feature Lap Leaders: John Waters (1-2), Daryl Charlier (3-30)

Maxima Racing Oils “Maximum Performance”: Daryl Charlier

Precise Racing Products “Pedal Down Hard Charger”: Christian Schneider (+16)

TBM Brakes “Tough Brake of the Night": John Waters

CrateInsider.com "Last Car on Lead Lap": Michael Reft


FK Rod Ends "Shock the Clock Qualifying" ($100 for fast time): 1. John Waters 19.349  2. Bryce Davis 19.485  3. Daryl Charlier 19.534  4. John Mollick 19.590  5. Andrew Satterlee 19.598  6. Russ King 19.616  7. Ben Policz 19.622  8. Kyle Lukon 19.681  9. Ryan Montgomery 19.695  10. Christian Schneider 19.716  11. Colton Ledingham 19.714  12. Jason Knowles 19.782  13. Michael Reft 19.874  14. Nico Dabecco 19.881  15. Clinton Hersh 19.896  16. Jeremy Wonderling 19.969  17. Chad Sines 20.024  18. Garrett Paugh 20.054  19. Bruce Hordusky, Jr. 20.059  20. Tony White 20.074  21. Brian Knowles 20.076  22. Chuck Medved 20.076  23. Andy Spooner 20.106  24. Justin Lamb 20.112  25. Zach Gunn 20.160  26. Jamie Wrightsman 20.185  27. Zach Kane 20.195  28. Brian Swank 20.195  29. Bill Kessler 20.355  30. Max Blair 20.468  31. Pete Wearing 20.575  32. Chuck Recker 20.626  33. Russ Matejka 20.719  34. Jared Kane 21.021  35. Cory Sines 21.060  36. Paul Jablonski DSQ.       


FK Rod Ends Heat 1 (8 laps, $25 to-win, top 5 transfer to A) 1. Waters  2. Satterlee  3. Montgomery  4. Reft  5. B. Knowles  6. Ch. Sines  7. Gunn  8. Kessler  9. Matejka.


FK Rod Ends Heat 2 (8 laps, $25 to-win, top 5 transfer to A):  1. Davis  2. King  3. Dabecco  4. Blair  5. Paugh  6. Schneider  7. Medved  8. Wrightsman  9. J. Kane.


FK Rod Ends Heat 3 (8 laps, $25 to-win, top 5 transfer to A): 1. Charlier  2. Ledingham  3. Hersh  4. Policz  5. Hordusky  6. Z. Kane  7. Spooner  8. Co. Sines  9. Wearing.


FK Rod Ends Heat 4 (8 laps, $25 to-win, top 5 transfer to A): 1. Lukon  2. Wonderling  3. Swank  4. Mollick  5. Lamb  6. White  7. J. Knowles  8. Recker  9. Jablonski-DSQ.


Last Chance B Main 1 (8 laps, top 2 transfer to A): 1. Schneider  2. Medved  3. Wrightsman  4. Ch. Sines  5. Kessler  6. J. Kane  7. Gunn  8. Matejka-DNS.


Last Chance B Main 2 (8 laps, top 2 transfer to A): 1. J. Knowles  2. Z. Kane  3. White  4. Spooner  5. Wearing  6. Co. Sines  7. Recker-DNS  8. Jablonski-DSQ.


K&N "Cold Air Induction" Dash (6 laps, $100 K&N certificate to-win): 1. Satterlee  2. Waters  3. Wonderling  4. Charlier  5. Davis  6. Lukon  7. King  8. Ledingham.


Feature Lap Prize Winners

1. Race 1  - $100 to the 18th place car (Justin Lamb)

2. Crate Insider - $100 to the 20th  place car (Bruce Hordusky, Jr.)

3. Tod Burns (Sub-Surface Of Indiana) - $100 to the 14th place car (Garrett Paugh)

4. Maria Melillo (FK Rod Ends) - $100 to the 4th place car (Bryce Davis)

5. Crate Insider/Jones Racing Products - $100 from Crate Insider & $100 Jones Racing Products certificate to the 17th place car (Nico Dabecco)

6. South Eastern Crate Association (SECA) - $100 to the 10th place car (Andrew Satterlee)

7. On Time Body & Graphics - $100 to the 13th  place car (Justin Lamb)

8. Jennerstown Engine Technologies - $100 to the 15th place car (Christian Schneider)

9. Maria Melillo (FK Rod Ends) - $100 to the 9th place car (Michael Reft)

10. RUSH Racing Series - $100 to the last place car on the track (Tony White)

11. Hendren Racing Engines - $100 to the 7th place car (Kyle Lukon)

12. Pace Performance - $100 to the 12th place car (Ben Policz)

13. Maria Melillo (FK Rod Ends) - $100 to the 10th place car (Andrew Satterlee)

14. Pace Performance - $100 to the 14th place car (Zach Kane)

15. Crate Racin’ USA / NeSmith Racing Series - $100 to the 6th place car (Kyle Lukon)

16. Pace Performance - $100 to the 9th place car (Michael Reft)

17. Don Ramon’s Mexican Restaurant - $100 to the 3rd place car (Jeremy Wonderling)

18. Pace Performance - $100 to the 8th place car (Garrett Paugh)

19. 955 Automotive - $100 to the 5th place car (Max Blair)

20. Pace Performance - $100 to the 7th place car (Garrett Paugh)

21. Pace Performance - $100 to the 10th place car (Michael Reft)

22. Tod Burns (Sub-Surface Of Indiana) - $100 to the 3rd place car (Jeremy Wonderling)

23. Maria Melillo (FK Rod Ends) - $100 to the 4th place car (Max Blair)

24. Dirtwrap - $100 to the 8th place car (Ben Policz)

25. Pace Performance - $100 to the 6th place car (Ryan Montgomery)

26. Pace Performance - $100 to the 11th place car (Christian Schneider)

27. Crate Racin’ USA/NeSmith Racing Series - $100 to the 7th  place car (Kyle Lukon)

28. Maria Melillo (FK Rod Ends) - $100 to the 9th place car (Michael Reft)

29. Hendren Racing Engines - $100 to the 2nd  place car (Max Blair)

30. Ingram Racing Engines - $100 to the last car on the lead lap (Michael Reft)


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.


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.