By Mike Leone

April 14, 2014                        FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(Pulaski, PA)…Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Racing Series Directors Vicki Emig and Mike Leone are proud to announce a two-year partnership with Bilstein Shock Absorbers.  Bilstein will be known as the “Official Shock” of the Sweeney RUSH Racing Series that includes both the Late Model and Sportsman Modified divisions.  Bilstein will also present the inaugural “Steel City 100” Sweeney Late Model Tour event on Sunday, June 8 at Pittsburgh’s PA Motor Speedway and the inaugural “Manufacturers Night” for the Sportsman Modifieds at Lernerville Speedway.


While Bilstein Shocks will not be required on the Late Models, the $135 “sealed” spec shock will be a requirement for the new Sweeney RUSH Sportsman Modified Series, which will debut at Sharon Speedway on Saturday, April 26.  


“I am really looking forward to working with Bilstein representative Jim Hiland in conjunction with RUSH over the next two years,” stated Emig.  “The work they have done to create the integrity of their ‘sealed’ spec shock program at an affordable price to the racer is very impressive.  I have no regrets in mandating this shock in our new Sportsman Modifieds.  I believe that as time goes on and this division grows our program will be regarded as one of the country's best examples as how implementing the Bilstein ‘sealed’ shock can provide beneficial results for all concerned.”          


No other shock company can match Bilstein’s high tolerances in a production line shock.  Their production line in Hamilton, OH is robotic and Sportsman Modified drivers’ shocks are untouched by human hands. Hundreds of individual one-part number shocks are built during a single production run and there is no possibility of a “one-off” shock being built there.  The “stake” that secures the piston nut on the end of the rod and the "crimp" that secures the rod guide in the shock are made using thousands of pounds of hydraulic force and cannot be duplicated by human hands. Once done, the external crimp cannot be undone.


“At Bilstein, we’re excited to be working with everyone connected with the RUSH organization," expressed Bilstein's Jim Hiland.  "Vicki and her colleagues are taking some bold steps to provide a future for this sport we all love.  I’ve been a rep for Bilstein now for 24 years and I know a lot of families who’ve left the sport over rising costs.  At most Modified races I see haulers that have 20 to 40 shocks hanging on the wall that cost anywhere from $150 to $400 each.  In dirt Late Model racing, even in Crate Late Model racing, the expenditures on shocks are even higher.  All of that money spent on shocks could be spent on towing and travel expenses, it could be spent on better safety equipment, on race fuel, or on a hundred other basic and necessary expenses." 


It feels good to work for a company like Bilstein that has made the right investments in product design and production equipment so that we are able to provide a viable solution with a consistent and almost bullet proof shock for only $135," continued Hiland.  "The best part is that this shock is going to defeat all efforts to cheat it up.”


Bilstein’s “sealed” spec shocks have also been successful in the Late Models as in 2012 David Gentry ran the shocks all season long and finished second in the NeSmith Touring Series points.  In 2014, racing star Alan Dellinger has once again teamed up with long-time racer and car owner Bob Williams and will utilize the shocks on their Late Model in Northeast Sweeney RUSH competition. 


“We’re thrilled to have Bilstein on board for both of our Series,” expressed Emig.  “It’s been a great selling point for the Sportsman Modified division that we’re very proud to start off fresh with and control another high cost item that has forced many drivers to the sidelines. I would be remised if we didn't thank Chris Archer of Precise Racing Products for having faith in the program and ordering 300 shocks so that we could these shocks are part of our program. The shocks are now available at Precise and will be available very soon at all of the Bilstein RUSH Authorized Distributors."


On Sunday, June 8, the region’s first-ever 100-lap Crate Late Model event will take place at Pittsburgh’s PA Motor Speedway.  The history-making “Steel City 100” Sweeney RUSH Tour event will be presented by Bilstein Stock Absorbers and will pay $4,000 to-win featuring a 30-car starting field.  In addition to the feature purse, each of the 30 starters will have the ability to win additional monies as part of the “Steel City Roulette” anywhere from $50 possibly up to $1,000!


On the Sportsman Modified side, Bilstein will present the inaugural “Manufacturers Night” for the division at Lernerville Speedway on a date to be announced.  Bilstein will also award a complete set of their “sealed” spec shocks valued at $540 at this event!  The “Manufacturers Night” for the Late Models has been a successful event for the past two seasons awarding over $30,000 of product to the racers, and this year will be held on Saturday, August 30 at McKean County Raceway. 


The following are Bilstein "sealed" spec shocks RUSH Authorized Distributors:


Precise Racing Products

Sarver, PA



Applebee Motorsports

Clymer, NY



Bicknell Racing Products

Niagara Falls, NY



Big Daddy’s Speed Center

Grove City, PA



Bubba’s Racing Parts

Brookville, PA



Imperial Heights Garage

Imperial, PA



Wedge Motorsports

Warren, OH



For more information on Bilstein Shock Absorbers, check out their website at or their Facebook page at  You can also follow them on Twitter @bilsteinUS  


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 Like our Facebook page at and, and follow us on Twitter @RUSHLM and @RUSHSportMods.