By Mike Leone


December 22, 2014                FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


(Pulaski, PA)…Following discussions from very productive weekends in Syracuse, New York at the National Parts Peddler Show and in Indianapolis, Indiana at the Performance Racing Industry Show, Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Racing Series Directors Vicki Emig and Mike Leone are proud to announce Bilstein Shock Absorbers have increased their involvement with the Series beginning in 2015.  The Series’ Official Shock will now offer a lucrative program over the next three years to those wishing to run the $135 “sealed”, spec shock on their Late Models from 2015-2017!  There will be nine different options offered in RUSH’s Bilstein “sealed” spec shock program.  The Bilstein "sealed" spec shock will again be required in Sweeney RUSH Sportsman Modifieds.   


The Sweeney RUSH Late Model Series Bilstein Bandits Championship will feature a separate $13,150 cash point fund beginning in 2015 that will add to the already growing Series programs!  Member drivers that commit to running the Bilstein sealed, spec shock will be eligible for this point fund (in addition to all of the others) that will pay $5,000 to the champion down to $250 for 12th.  Also, those that finish 13th through 15th in Bilstein points will receive a pair of the shocks bringing the total to $13,960 in cash and contingencies.  See complete breakdown below.  Drivers will be able to join the program by electing the option on the 2015 membership form.


The Bilstein Championship point system is identical to the Sweeney Weekly Series point fund meaning if the 2015 Weekly Series Champion is on the Bilstein Shocks, he’ll earn $10,000!  A driver that sweeps all of the RUSH championships in 2015 on the Bilstein program could collect over $23,000 in addition to contingencies and point funds offered by the speedway(s)! 


“This is a huge announcement for our racers and one that I believe the majority of our racers have been waiting for,” expressed Emig.  “It’s no secret that shocks have been a hot topic in Crate Late Model racing and something that our racers have wanted us to address for years.  The beauty of this program is it offers a ton of incentive for drivers to seriously consider getting on the Bilsteins, while not mandating or forcing anyone to change what they have.  We cannot thank Bilstein enough for their belief in our program to influx this additional money into RUSH.”   


In 2014, a handful of RUSH Late Model racers tried the sealed, spec Bilstein Shocks.  Alan Dellinger was one of those racers and the veteran standout definitely turned some heads and made a believer of many.  Dellinger drove the Bob Williams-owned #8 to four Sweeney Weekly Series victories at Sharon Speedway in addition to four top four finishes in Sweeney Tour competition.  That included a close runner-up at Sharon along with a third and a fourth place finish at Lernerville Speedway, and a fourth at Expo Speedway.  At Lernerville, Dellinger came from deep in the field (21st and 20th). 


"We truly believe that if we influx this program correctly and see other racers, as I know we will, have the same success as the Dellinger/Williams team that this concern will take care of itself," continued Emig.  "We all have to be realistic and realize that we must start addressing this issue, and not just talk about it.   I know our sanctioned speedways support this program and I hope our racers look at our efforts with a positive attitude and understand that we are not doing this to hurt them but in fact ease their burden of having to have an expensive shock package to field a competitive Crate Late Model."      

The Sweeney RUSH Sportsman Modified Series was launched in 2014 and the Bilstein Shocks were mandated.  The Modified drivers offered nothing but praise.  The Series received a tremendous boost in recent weeks with the announcement that Sharon Speedway in Hartford, Ohio and Sportsman’s Speedway in Knox, Pa. have added the Sportsman Modifieds to their respective Saturday and Sunday night programs in 2015.  A mini Touring Series is also in the works.


No other shock company can match Bilstein’s high tolerances in a production shock.  Their new tamper proof sealing system has taken spec series shock programs to a new level.  Competitors on the Bilstein program need not be concerned that they are at a disadvantage because teams with large budgets can buy an advantage; that cannot happen in the Bilstein program.  The unique sealing system means that once sealed, the Bilstein spec shocks cannot be taken apart.


“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 the technology utilized in manufacturing this shock has already defeated efforts to cheat it up in other classes of racing throughout the country and of course in the RUSH Sportsman Modifieds last season.


2015 Sweeney RUSH Late Model Bilstein Shock Absorber Championship ($13,150 cash plus $810 in contingencies): 1. $5,000  2. $2,500  3. $1,500  4. $1,000  5. $750  6. $500  7. $400  8. $350  9. $325  10. $300  11. $275  12. $250  13. 2 Bilstein sealed spec shocks 14.  2 Bilstein sealed spec shocks 15. 2 Bilstein sealed spec shocks.


The Bilstein shocks are available through Precise Racing Products at 724-360-8000 and other vendors throughout the area.  A complete list will be posted on the website.  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.  



2014 RUSH Late Model marketing partners include Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC, Pace Performance, Hoosier Tire, Sunoco Race Fuels, Bazell Race Fuels, Alternative Power Sources, Precise Racing Products, ARbodies, The Brake Man, K&N Filters, Bilstein Shocks, Lincoln Electric, TurboStart, Beyea Headers, FK Rod Ends, Bobby Lake Motorsports, Driven Racing Oil, Crate Innovations Inc., Moroso Performance Products, Velocita-USA, High Gear Speed Shop,, Utsinger’s Towing, B.R.A.K.E.S.,, 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 Like our Facebook page at and follow us on Twitter @RUSHLM.