DIRTcar to Sanction Sportsman Modifieds at Can Am Motorsports Park
By Jo Ann Davies
LAFARGEVILLE, N.Y. - March 16, 2015 - DIRTcar Sportsman racing will have an additional location on Friday nights in 2015 at Can Am Motorsports Park in LaFargeville, N.Y.
"We're very pleased to announce the return of Can Am to the DIRTcar family," stated Northeast Director of Series and Sanctioning Mike Perrotte. "The location provides another opportunity for our Sportsman drivers to have a home track and be involved in our Series."
Built in 1974, the big half-mile dirt speedway is currently owned by Rochester businessman and long-time racer Tiger Chapman with Chip Burdick serving as General Manager.
The DIRTcar Sportsman class runs weekly on Friday nights, paying $700-to-win every other week. Alternate weeks the Sportsman purse will pay $600-to-win with $100 to take the green every week.
Under the DIRTcar banner the Sportsman class will continue to allow the use of Modified tires and teams can choose to utilize either aluminum or steel wheels as per the DIRTcar Rule Book.
Can Am Motorsports Park was first sanctioned by DIRTcar in 1983 with the 2013 and 2014 seasons the only time since then Can Am has operated as an independent track. "We're excited to be back in the fold and want to have a strong relationship with DIRTcar once again," stated Burdick. "We are hopeful we can expand our involvement with DIRTcar in the near future."
Can Am Motorsports Park will hold a DIRTcar Sportsman Modified Series race at the track on Wednesday, June 3, with a 7:30 p.m. starting time. Details regarding the event can be found on the track web page (www.canammotorsportspark.com) or on their Facebook page, Chapman's Can Am Motorsports Park.
"We are already hearing from a lot of teams that they are pleased we will be connected with DIRTcar once again," commented Burdick. "Fans are also looking forward to our Series race and the level of competition it will bring to the track."
"We're looking forward to building a solid foundation with Can Am," stated DIRTcar Director Perrotte. "There is a long history with the track and we look forward to the opportunity to work with them once again."
Fulton And Brewerton Speedway To Host DIRTcar Sportsman Championship Series Events
BALDWINSVILLE, NY – March 13, 2014 (By Dave Medler) – The Fulton and Brewerton Speedways will each host a $1,000 to-win DIRTcar Sportsman Championship Series event this season. Fulton Speedway will be the kick-off event for the series on Friday and Saturday April 25-26 as part of the ‘High Bank Holdup’ weekend. Friday night, Sportsman teams are invited to shake their cars down in an open practice session. On Saturday they will be on the race card with the Big Block Modified Super DIRTcar Series Highbank Holdup 100.
Brewerton Speedway will host the Sportsman Series on Thursday, October 8 during Super DIRT Week. They will join the card of the 23rd DIRTcar 358 Modified Series ‘Hurricane 100’.
Both of these series races will follow DIRTcar Sportsman rules. Log onto www.dirtcar.com for rule information.
Up next for on the calendar is the popular Motorsports Expo at the New York State Fairgrounds this Saturday and Sunday March 14-15. Stop by our booth all weekend to see some of the new racing equipment, pick up schedules, season passes, pit passes and have any questions answered about the 2015 season by speedway staff.
Two weeks after the Motorsports Expo, the Great Northern Mall will host the Brewerton and Fulton Speedway “Blast-Off” car show on March 27-29. For race teams this is a way to show off your 2015 racing equipment and give great exposure to your sponsors. Not only is this for the race fans, it’s also a way to attract potential fans to the great racing at the Brewerton and Fulton Speedways. The Great Northern Mall is located on Route 31 in Clay, NY with easy access off Route 481. Car display is free but space is limited. To enter your car, please go to the online form http://www.brewertonspeedway.com/mallshow.htm .
The Fulton Speedway will swing into action on the above mentioned dates of April 25-26 with the ‘High Bank Holdup’ weekend. The Brewerton Speedway with kick the gates open for the 2015 season on Friday, May 1. Both track schedules are now up on www.brewertonspeedway.com – www.fultonspeedway.com . Like our Facebook pages to interact with race fans anytime- www.facebook.com/BrewertonSpeedway - www.facebook.com/FultonSpeedway .
BICKNELL RACING PRODUCTS REWARDS IT’S DRIVERS
$333 Certificate & Commemorative Check Awaits Highest Finishing Bicknell Driver
March 9, 2015 By Rob Hazer (Fonda, NY) – No matter the series weather it be Sportsman, Small Block Modifieds, or the mighty Big Blocks, drivers across the dirt track racing world are familiar with Bicknell Racing Products. They spend countless hours assembling their BRP Chassis after they put hard earned dollars into their race rod in hopes they find victory lane. In 2015 the top Bicknell Racing Products driver will be rewarded with a $333 certificate and commemorative victory lane check for their efforts.
Since 1988 Bicknell Racing Products has had one goal, which is to provide quality parts at reasonable prices within a timely manner. BRP has built in success after all it’s named for Mr. Small Block himself, Pete Bicknell. In 2014 alone Bicknell Racing Products enjoyed nearly 700 wins to go along with nearly 50 track championships throughout the Northeast. Drivers who wheel Bicknell chassis are accustomed to the personal touch, advice, and timely responses from the staff at BRP including Randy Williamson.
Williamson frequently offers chassis setup advice to go along with a variety of innovative parts made by Bicknell Racing Products to help their drivers make it to the winner’s circle. Drivers pour time, effort, and dollars into BRP, which when asked if they’d be interested in giving just a little back, Randy Williamson and Bicknell Racing Products didn’t hesitate to say yes.
“I was very humbled at the response from Randy at BRP. He expressed his interest, explained his belief in our series, and appreciated what we’re doing here at King Of Dirt for the drivers. We’re not in this to read our name in the paper, but to promote the sport, it’s businesses, and it’s drivers. Randy was easy to talk with and we struck up a deal rather quickly that will reward Bicknell drivers come banquet time,” said King Of Dirt Promoter Rob Hazer.
In 2015 the highest finishing Bicknell Racing Products Chassis driver will be rewarded with a $333 certificate towards BRP products. Also to add a special touch Bicknell Racing Products will be sending a commemorative victory lane check to be presented along with the certificate during the season ending KOD Series banquet.
“To have a guy like Randy express himself to us the way he did was humbling. To have him put us up there with DIRTcar, RoC, and the Brett Deyo Short Track Super Series meant a lot. We had a great chat about racing, his son, and we look forward to having Bicknell Racing Products involved with KOD for a long time,” concluded KOD promoter Rob Hazer.
Humberstone Speedway 56th Season of Racing Set to Begin on Sunday May 3
PORT COLBORNE, ONTARIO… The 56th season of competitive racing at the New Humberstone Speedway will get underway on Sunday May 3rd at the popular Southern Ontario oval.
The speedway hosted a rules and informational meeting at the Americana Resort in Niagara Falls, Ontario on Thursday February 26 with the discussion being hosted by General Manager Bob Davidson and Director of Race Night Operations Clinton Geoffrey.
During the meeting, the 2015 tentative schedule was released. Highlights of the 2015 schedule include the return of the Southern Ontario Sprints for two shows starting with the John Puhl Memorial on May 17th. The SOS returns to Humberstone on August 9th.
The Go Nuclear Late Models return to Humberstone on May 31st while the RUSH Late Model Tour returns on July 19.
Sunday August 30th will feature the 358 Modifieds in the Pete Cosco Memorial. September 13th will be the Sportsman Super DIRTcar Series in the Trevor Wilkens Memorial.
The following Sunday, September 20th will be the Safecracker 100 for the Sportsman and the season will come to an end on September 27th for the popular Eve of Destruction. The full schedule is available for viewing at www.humberstonespeedway.com
There are no major rule changes throughout the five weekly divisions. The DIRTcar Sportsman, and RUSH Late Models will be trying the Delaware Restart for the first three weeks of the season as a trial. The Sportsman will continue to run under the DIRTcar banner and run DIRTcar rules while the Late Models will be once again under the RUSH sanction for rules.
Season Passes and Track Memberships are available by calling the speedway office at (905) 834-4002 or by emailing email@example.com Drivers must have track membership in order to collect points. The speedway is also looking for a technical inspector. Anyone interested is to contact the speedway.
SWEENEY RUSH SPORTSMAN MOD SOPHOMORE SEASON TO FEATURE 43 DATES WITH WEEKLY RACING AT SHARON & SPORTSMAN'S; 6 TOUR EVENTS SCHEDULED
March 2, 2015
By Mike Leone
(Pulaski, PA)...Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Sportsman Modified Series Directors Vicki Emig and Mike Leone are proud to announce the release of the division's 2015 schedule of events. The second season for the Northeast-style, center-steer Modifieds utilizing GM 602 crate engines, $135 Bilstein sealed spec shocks, and spec Hoosier Tires on steel wheels will feature approximately 43 dates at six different speedways throughout western Pennsylvania and eastern Ohio. The complete, tentative schedule is posted below.
The biggest news during the offseason was the announcement by both Sharon and Sportsman's Speedways that they will feature the division on a weekly basis. Sharon, which is located in Hartford, Ohio, operates on Saturday nights, while Sportsman's is a Sunday night facility in Knox, Pennsylvania. Sharon will begin their 86th anniversary season on Saturday, April 25, while Sportsman's will wave the green flag for the first time in 2015 on Sunday, May 10. That will also be the first ever RUSH Sportsman Modified event in the history of Sportsman's.
In addition to the weekly shows at Sharon and Sportsman's, several other speedways have again been gracious enough to schedule events including Lernerville Speedway in Sarver, Pa., Pittsburgh's PA Motor Speedway in Imperial, Pa., and Tri-City Raceway Park in Franklin, Pa. At least one other speedway may host an event as well.
In 2014, 19 Sweeney Weekly Series events were held with seven-time winner, Greg Martin of Wilson, New York, capturing the $3,000 inaugural title. That $10,000+ championship will return once again in 2015 paying the top 15 positions for drivers' best 12 finishes.
New in 2015 will be a mini Sweeney Touring Series and "Futures Cup" for eligible teenage racers. Tracks hosting Sweeney Touring Series events will include Sharon, Sportsman's, Lernerville, and Tri-City with the possible addition of two other speedways. These events will pay a minimum of $600 to-win up to $1,000. Highlights of the Tour include the "Sam and Bonnie Colwell Memorial" at Sportsman's on August 9, the two-day "Apple Festival Nationals" at Sharon Speedway September 11-12, the first ever event at Tri-City on September 13 as they reopen in 2015 after being closed for four years, and a pair of events at Lernerville including the season finale on October 23-24 for the "Steel City Stampede".
On July 24, Lernerville's "Mod Madness" Sweeney Tour event will also see one driver win the GM 602 crate engine giveaway valued at $3,125! Last year, Jeremy Zufall was the lucky winner at Sharon. This event, like "Manufacturers Night", changes locations annually.
Not only will August 9 at Sportsman's be the "Sam and Bonnie Colwell Memorial", but also "Manufacturers Night". The inaugural event in 2014 was held at Lernerville where over $5,000 was distributed. This year's second annual event is expected to exceed $10,000 as it grows much like the Sweeney RUSH Late Model MFG Night, which has grown to over $30,000. Some of the major prizes to date include two packages from MSD Ignition valued at $1,250, two complete sets of rod ends valued at $1,000 from FK Rod Ends, $1,000 of product from Jones Racing Products, a $750 Lincoln Electric welder and utility cart, and much more!
The inaugural "Futures Cup" championship is one that is sure to filled with some awesome young racers, many bringing impressive resumes of accomplishments from their years of participation in go-kart racing, as did all three of the RUSH Dirt Late Model "Future Cup" Champions, Ryan Montgomery, Eric Wilson, and defending champion Michael Lake. After capturing the title in 2012 at 14 years of age, three years later Montgomery went on the become the 2014 Sweeney RUSH Late Model Touring Champion.
There's no doubt that the very same progression will be witnessed in the RUSH Sportsman Modifieds class, which will immediately provide an affordable stepping stone for go-kart racers interested in fielding a full-size Northeast style Modified car. Potential candidates for the "Futures Cup" Modified title that fit this bill are both 14-year-old Kyle Martell and 13-year-old Jeremy Weaver.
"I think it's safe to say that a strong foundation is now in place for the RUSH Sportsman Modified division," stated Emig. "We are right in line with what we had hoped for in the growth and development of this class and I really think that by mid-season we may see 20 car fields or more at most events. The class is definitely serving its purpose as it has already influxed a whole new group of racers. Many of these racers are in their teens or 20s and are new to our sport along with some that previously raced Modifieds but have not in a while. I can't thank the speedways, racers, and of course Sweeneys, enough for helping us get this great concept off the ground last year. We are really looking forward to working on a daily basis to make sure this class enjoys the same success as their sister series, he RUSH Late Models."
2015 Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Sportsman Modified Master Schedule*
Saturday, April 25 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly) - Season Opener
Friday, May 1 Lernerville Speedway, Sarver, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, May 2 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Saturday, May 9 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, May 10 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly) - Season Opener
Saturday, May 16 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, May 17 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, May 23 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, May 24 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, May 30 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, May 31 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, June 6 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, June 7 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, June 13 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly) -Free General Admission/Autographs
Sunday, June 14 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, June 20 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, June 21 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, June 27 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, June 28 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Friday, July 3 Lernerville Speedway, Sarver, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, July 11 Pittsburgh's PA Motor Speedway, Imperial, PA (Weekly)
Sunday, July 12 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Wednesday, July 15 TBA/Tentative (Tour)
Saturday, July 18 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, July 19 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Friday, July 24 Lernerville Speedway, Sarver, PA (Tour) - "Mod Madness" with GM 602 Engine Giveaway
Saturday, July 25 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, July 26 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, August 1 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, August 2 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, August 8 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, August 9 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Tour) "Sam & Bonnie Colwell Memorial" - MFG Night
Saturday, August 15 Pittsburgh's PA Motor Speedway, Imperial, PA (Weekly)
Sunday, August 16 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, August 22 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, August 23 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Saturday, August 29 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Weekly)
Sunday, August 30 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly)
Sunday, September 6 Sportsman's Speedway, Knox, PA (Weekly) - Season Finale
Fri-Sat, Sept 11-12 Sharon Speedway, Hartford, OH (Tour) - "Apple Festival Nationals"
Sunday, September 13 Sharon Speedway, Franklin, PA (Tour) - "Apple Fest"
Saturday, September 19 Lernerville Speedway, Sarver, PA (Weekly) - "Autumn-Motive Fest"
Fri-Sat, October 23-24 Lernerville Speedway, Sarver, PA (Tour) - "Steel City Stampede"
*Schedule is subject to change.
EPIC NORTHEAST CRATE NATIONALS PLANNED FOR 2015
September 11, 2015 Top Talent Will Venture To Great Race Place For The Nationals
February 25, 2015 By Rob Hazer (Malta, NY) – History, prestige, and talent always surrounds the Northeast Crate Nationals. 2015 will be no different, as the top talent in the Crate Sportsman division will make the pilgrimage to the great race place in search of another must see Nationals event on September 11, 2015. Last year Tim Hartman Jr. and Jeremy Pitts gave race fans another epic Nationals battle for the record books.
“Early in the race I didn’t know how good I was compared to everyone else. I was just going hard as I could every lap. We had a really good car most of the race, but on lap 75 I noticed I was loosing power steering. The car began to get very difficult to handle at that point,” said defending Northeast Crate Nationals champion Tim Hartman Jr.
‘Big Time Little Tim’ had 2-time Albany Saratoga Speedway track champion Jeremy Pitts right on the back bumper late in the race, but that didn’t shake the second-generation driver. “I knew good cars made their way to the front and were breathing down my neck. Then we got to lap traffic the last 10 laps of the race, which were racing side-by-side and it worried me they would cost us the race, but we were able to make some moves and hold on,” said Hartman Jr.
Winning a big event surrounded by such prestige, history, and honor such as the Northeast Crate Nationals can be an emotional roller coaster. The agony of being so close only to have it slip away is draining, but the relief of crossing the line earning a Nationals championship is worth the wait.
“It was such relief crossing under the checkered flag to the point I let out really deep breath. Part of me was so glad we were done, but I was also really excited we just won the Nationals. Victory lane on the front stretch with my peers was awesome, but the best part of the whole night was going into the pits and finally seeing my family and friends. It felt good knowing how proud they all were of me, because they knew how badly we wanted to win the Nationals,” continued Hartman Jr.
‘The Nationals’ as it’s referred to by Crate Sportsman drivers across the Northeast has it’s own history full of mystique and intrigue. To Tim Hartman Jr. it was about the recognition that comes from winning a big event at the great race place. “The recognition for winning the Nationals is awesome. From the Bloomfield’s Florist wreath to the big check and trophy even the three trophy girls, it was amazing. It made me feel like I really accomplished something big, like Syracuse, but the worst part was having to go home for the night, because I didn’t want to leave victory lane,” said Hartman Jr.
Hartman Jr. has had good runs in the Nationals almost claiming victory in 2011. He charged from 19th to 6th in 2013, but just couldn’t find the yellow brick road leading to victory lane. When he did the young Teo Pro Car driving star had no shortage of people to thank.
“In 2011 we were on our way to almost certain victory until a flat tire caused by something in the track and in 2013 we came from 19th to 6th before the rain shortened the event. So we came into 2014 knowing we could race for the win and had a chip on our shoulder. I have to thank my father for his dedication and hard work, mom, grandparents, girlfriend Bre, all our friends for their support, and crew who come to help us each week,” stated Hartman Jr.
Little Tim concluded by thanking sponsors who help get him to victory lane, “I have to thank Lussier’s Auto Body, Bemiss Trucking, Racing2Learn, Hico Fabrication, B-DRY Systems Of NY, and Big Man Painting. Without their support who knows where we’d be.”
‘Big Time Little Tim’ wasn’t the only one to celebrate a big Nationals victory on September 12, 2014. ‘Rowdy’ Randy Miller came to Street Stock Nationals Showdown victory lane with dings, dents, and flat tires. Yes that’s how hard Miller drives his F&L Construction number 12.
“Winning the Street Stock Nationals was a huge accomplishment for me in 2014. We had a real good season and that just topped it off. It’s a real good feeling being able to win a big race like that with all the invaders in town. It was the most challenging races I’ve had in my whole career,” said Street Stock Nationals champion Randy Miller.
Miller is no stranger to victory lane, but this one set the table for a run at defending his Nationals title. “It’s nice to win the first ever Street Stock Nationals, because it looks good on the resume. By the time we got out there the track was dry and slick just the way I like it. Made it real racy for us, but we had the tire pressures adjusted for the extra laps so it took a little time for the car to come to me. I really had a challenge with the number 5 of Damon Anderson, because he was hooked up. I finally made a run coming off turn four and we touched, but I was focused on hitting my marks and we were able to bring home the W,” continued Miller.
Celebration time sometimes intensifies when Street Stock drivers win a big event, which is exactly what happened when ‘Rowdy’ Miller made it to victory lane. “After taking the checkered flag I may have over celebrated a bit in turn two and blew the right rear tire. I was excited! It didn’t look pretty in victory lane after the battle, but pretty never won a race. Winning the Street Stock Nationals Showdown was great. We’ve worked hard over the years figuring out the science of these full-fender cars and it shows winning a big race like the Street Stock Nationals,” Miller said.
Randy Miller concluded by thanking some people who made it all possible, “I have to thank my sponsors F&L Construction, Steve’s Building & Remodeling, Collins Turf & Surf, J&R Fuels, and State Farm. None of this would be possible without sponsors. I have to thank my team and crew for working hard each week on the race rod and my crew chief Scott Visscher. My family and friends I thank them for their support, but the most important person I have to thank is my father Russ. He is the reason I’m able to do what I do.”
The format for the highly anticipated event has always been part of the allure surrounding the Nationals. In 2015 the format will not venture far from what was successful last season. Teams will draw for heat groups through the back gate, which will be followed by timed heat groups. The fastest time in each group will be locked into the redraw before the top 4 are inverted for the heat. The remaining drivers will be lined up heads up based on time.
Drivers who time the fastest in their heat group do not have to run the heat race, however if they choose they can run the heat attempting to earn a coveted ‘Monster Resin’ heat win trophy and cash award. From there consolation last chance qualifiers and provisionals fill the 30-car starting field. The Northeast Crate Nationals will again be 100 laps in length with a healthy purse finding it’s way to qualified drivers. Non-qualifiers B-Main is in the works, more details will come over the summer months.
Street Stocks will draw for heat groups through the back gate, which will be followed by heat races and consolation last chance qualifiers to set the 30-car starting field. This year the Street Stock Nationals Showdown will be 30 laps and presented by Meltz Lumber, which sponsors a few different full-fender Street Stocks in the capital region.
Northeast Crate Nationals at Albany-Saratoga Speedway is scheduled for September 11, 2015. The high profile event will again be one of the biggest Sportsman stories of the season. For many 602 Crate Sportsman drivers it’s already marked on their calendars. The Nationals will be part of the Basement Systems King Of Dirt Crate Sportsman Series, which will be scored as the only special points event of the season using the 100 point scale.
More details to come on the event as they become available, however for any questions or to get involved with the Duell-Mayhem Promotion in conjunction with Albany-
Saratoga Speedway contact Rob Hazer by phone (518) 853-2004, (518) 848-7038, or via E-Mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or you may also get in touch with Scott Duell for
information. Laps for the Nationals are already for sale for just $10 each minimum and can be purchased at www.gofundme.com/kingofdirt.
Albany-Saratoga Speedway can be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Albany-Saratoga-Speedway or online at www.albany-saratogaspeedway.com. Northeast Crate Nationals and KOD can be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/602nationals or online at www.speedzoneonline.org.
INFLUX OF NEW RACERS SET TO EMBARK ON SWEENEY RUSH SPORTSMAN MODIFIED SERIES IN 2015
February 16, 2015
By Mike Leone
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Pulaski, PA)...As the Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Sportsman Modified Series prepares to enter its sophomore season, many changes are on the horizon for the crate engine, Bilstein sealed spec shock, center-steer Modified Series. The first of those changes is the introduction of two weekly tracks for the division. Sharon Speedway in Hartford, Ohio and Sportsman's Speedway in Knox PA have agreed to provide a weekly venue for the Sweeney RUSH Sportsman Modified to compete on a weekly basis on Saturday and Sunday nights respectively.
Another large change in the Series is the addition of a number of drivers who will be entering the Sportsman Modifieds ranks for 2015. Series Co-Director Vicki Emig, for one is very excited about the growth for the new year. "Last year was somewhat of an exhibition year, but it served its purpose in showing the region and potential new racers what an exciting and affordable class it will be." She understands that the "show & tell" aspect of last season served its purpose and that is much of what attracted the new blood to the division. "The majority of the racers joining the class this year have never raced or had not recently been racing so the division is right on track in doing what we had hoped, recruiting new racers and helping to preserve and build back into our Modified class."
Among the new drivers entering the ranks of the Sweeney RUSH Sportsman Modified Series is Joe Plesniak. At age 43, Plesniak has a somewhat diverse short track background. "I started racing in the mini stock division in 2009. Had some success and a whole lot of fun. We moved up to try our hand at the Street Stock and quickly found out that both my talent and funds were lacking to compete at that level. We've took a little break from racing, but now we're going to give it another shot," Plesniak says of his eagerness to move to the new affordable New York-style Modifieds.
In fact what has drawn him to the Sweeney RUSH Mods is the cost and the tech aspects of the class. "Tech for the mini stocks is limited at best. Go on to any of the racing classified ads and you'll find a bunch of cars for sale with 'motor work'. The RUSH Series seems to have a good handle limiting the costs to the racer." Plesniak's Watson's Auto Service, Merle Hays Auto Wrecking, State Farm Insurance, Linda Oliver, Whispering Pines Golf Course-sponsored Bicknell will be competing mostly at Sharon on Saturday nights. "I have no crazy thoughts of winning anything except for experience," says the Linesville, Pa. racer. "The plan is to go out and have fun each week and be able to load the car on the trailer without cursing. The goal is to have fun and not break our equipment or anyone else's equipment."
Another driver that cites the cost controls built into the RUSH Series is Hubbard, Ohio's Jeff Hughes. The 29-year-old has some time behind the wheel in the Limited Sprint Cars and Mini Stocks, but his time working around the Big-Block Modifieds has given him the passion for this type of car. "What has sparked my interest in in the RUSH Series is being around the Big-Block Modifieds for the past 15 years watching one of my best friends Jimmy Weller and his dad race. I have always had a passion for the Modifieds, but just to be competitive you have to spend big money which I was not in the position to do. So now that the RUSH Series has surfaced with Sportsman Modifieds and has made it affordable I was able to jump right in to them."
Hughes will spend much of 2015 behind the wheel of his #22 Teo Pro with the backing of Hughes General Contracting and One Stop Mart. You can catch him most anywhere the RUSH Sportsman Modifieds are scheduled to run this year including weekly at Sharon and Sportsman's as well as most of the touring dates.
Emlenton, Pennsylvania's Kurt Corah joins the ranks of the Sweeney RUSH Mods with a background that includes much of the 90s and early 2000' in a Stock Car before going on to motorcycle racing. He also finds the low cost of the series keeping the racing in the driver's and team's hands as the reason for his interest in RUSH. Asked where we can see his Bicknell #152 compete, the 45-year-old says, "I will be racing at Sportsman's Speedway in nearby Knox mostly with Sharon on weekends that time will allow." With backing from Amazing Stitches and Hermes Custom Products, both of Emlenton, he hopes to experience some close, competitive racing.
Twenty-four year-old Josh Deems has spent a fair amount of seat time racing at Tri-City Speedway in the Enduro class and Mercer Raceway Park in a Mod Lite. He brings his #9D Bicknell, Crate Engine Sportsman Modified to the RUSH Series with a couple of factors in mind. "I was interested in the class because it seems like it'll have an even playing field and the Series' promoters care about the drivers," says the Volant, PA driver, who continues his high praise of the Series and some of its promotions. "I think it is great that the class can have a point fund such as it does for all the more it costs to get into the class; and that they have the manufacturers night that they give away products and parts to the racer. Things like that really attract racers to the division." With the help of his wife Staci and his uncle, Deems hopes to make as many races as possible in his yet unsponsored racer.
At age 20, Brandon Richey has two years of experience in the Mini Stocks where he has already won at Sportsman's Speedway and picked up a win at the "Little Guys Nationals" at Mercer Raceway Park. The Cranberry, Pa. driver will be returning to race at Sportsman's weekly in his 2010 Teo #17. "Getting used to the Modified will be the big thing as a first-year driver," says Richey. His Casey's Restaurant and Lounge, Nickle Bar, Eakin Concrete-sponsored entry will be accompanied in the pits by his crew consisting of his father, grandfather and brother. His father Chip was a former Big-Block Modified racer at the area speedways years ago.
Brandon's cousin Nick Ritchey is one that is looking forward to getting back into Modified racing due to the affordability. Nick started racing go-karts at the age of eight, and had many feature wins along with track championships at Slippery Rock and Pinehill Speedways. Nick started racing Big-Block Modifieds in 2001, and captured Rookie of the Year at Tri-City Speedway and the Outstanding Achievement Award at Mercer Raceway Park.
Nick got hurt in 2005 and gave up racing until 2007 when he started racing an asphalt Late Model at Lake Erie speedway through 2010. Now the 30-year-old from Oil City, Pa. will be behind the wheel of a 2003 Bicknell.
While the Sweeney RUSH Late Model Division has a number of very young, talented drivers, with names like Michael Lake, Ryan Montgomery, Eric Wilson, Nico Dabecco, and others, the Sweeney RUSH Sportsman Modifieds also has two young teenagers ready to take on his elders in competition.
The first is Kyle Martell. The 14-year-old is probably the westward most New York-style Modified racer in the country residing in Rootstown, Ohio. Martell started racing asphalt quarter midgets at six. Martell raced throughout Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, and North Carolina winning championships locally, regionally, and nationally throughout his eight-year career. His biggest victory was a national race in the infield of Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
In 2014, Martell competed in the "358" Modified division at Mercer Raceway Park, and is looking forward to moving over to the Sweeney RUSH Sportsman Modifieds for the upcoming 2015 season. Martell is a big proponent of the sealed crate engine. His #8 Bicknell is sponsored by Sarchione Chevrolet & Ford and Band of Brothers Restoration. He'll have help from his dad Tim, uncle Andy, and grandfather Jim as he looks forward to competing weekly at Sharon Speedway and traveling with the RUSH Series with futures goals of victories and championships.
At 13 years old by the drop of the first green flag of the season, Stoneboro, Pennsylvania's Jeremy Weaver is ready to take on the challenge of the Sportsman Mods. He became a huge fan of racing watching his uncle Chris Haines in competition at Mercer Raceway Park and never missed a race. By age seven, Weaver's parents gave him a go-kart as a Christmas present. A true track kid, Jeremy has made many friends in the racing business at his young age. After a couple of track titles in the kart, his story jumps ahead a half dozen years to another Christmas morning in 2014 when he received a full-size center-steer Modified!
Sharing garage time with Haines and Tommy Kristyak, Weaver and his father Aaron are looking forward to a season of learning, seat time, and earning the respect of the older drivers in the class. The Lakeview Middle School student has a lot to prove and has just the right determination to reach those goals.
Several other new racers are expected to compete. One of those is Sam Tatalovic of Guys Mills, Pa. Sam is the son of new Tri-City Raceway Park owner, Mark Tatalovic. Sam recently picked up a Bicknell car from longtime racer Rick Hall and will be a rookie racer in 2015. Another is 24-year-old Josh Chaney of Hubbard, Ohio, who is good friends with Jeff Hughes and will be a rookie racer in 2015.
Twenty-year-old go-kart graduate, Chelsie Kriegisch, will begin her first full season. The Ellwood City, Pa. resident split time last year with car owner Jerry Schaffer, who will have three cars in 2015 including one again for his son Will.
Emig seems pleased with the response to the growth of the division so far, with the number of new drivers and two tracks where they can run full-time. "When Sharon and Sportsman's Speedways both stepped up to host the division on a weekly basis, I knew the results would be positive. I really think by mid-summer we will see very respectable fields of cars at both speedways and from there the sky's the limit for growth into the future."
Upstate Sportsman Alliance forged between Central New York Tracks
Brewerton, Canandaigua, Fulton, Utica-Rome and Weedsport promoting Sportsman regional points system and regional championship
By Upstate Sportsman Alliance PR
February 6, 2015
(BALDWINSVILLE, NY) – Officials from five prominent Central New York tracks, with support from FX Caprara Car Companies, are excited to announce the formation of the FX Caprara Car Companies Upstate Sportsman Alliance (USA), a cooperative initiative designed to organize sportsman racing events within the region. Track promoters Jimmy Phelps (Weedsport), Jeremie Corcoran (Canandaigua) and Bill Shea (Utica-Rome), in conjunction with Fulton Speedway and Brewerton Speedway Marketing Director Cory Reed agreed to this new program recently after several months in the planning.
The FX Caprara Upstate Sportsman Alliance will track all sportsman racers within the region under a common points system combining points earned in ‘weekly race events’ at each track, plus points earned in a ten-race ‘Championship Tour’. At season’s end, a minimum point fund of $10,000 will be distributed. Each of the top ten finishers will receive an identical $1000 payoff. Additional prizes and awards will be distributed to additional point positions as they are determined.
A driver’s best 15 finishes in weekly races from the start of the season to Labor Day will be scored. These finishes can be obtained at any of the five participating tracks on any race night and are not restricted to a driver’s home track. After a driver reaches 15 starts within the region, his/her poorest finishes will start to be eliminated. Driver’s that make more starts will have more opportunities to eliminate worse finishes. The DIRTcar weekly points system will be in effect, with 60 points awarded for a win, 56 for a second, etc. The maximum number of ‘Weekly Points’ attainable toward the Championship is 900, (15 wins x 60 points each).
Ten (10) Championship Tour Events
Points earned on a ten race Championship Tour Schedule will be added to a driver’s weekly points. Championship Tour Events are each track’s most prominent Sportsman events and are spaced out from April through the end of October. All Championship Tour events will be scored and may not be dropped. The DIRTcar 100-point schedule will be used to track these points (ie. 100 points for a win, 40 to start. Driver’s failing to qualify for any Championship event will still earn 20 points).
The Championship Tour schedule begins at Canandaigua Speedway with the Cabin Fever 64 in Saturday, April 19. Utica-Rome hosts the second tour event on Monday, May 25 in conjunction with their annual Victoria 200.
Brewerton Speedway hosts the first of three July tour events on Wednesday, July 1 alongside the first night of ESS Speed Week. Sunday, July 5, Weedsport will host the 2nd Annual Sportsman Classic presented by Industrial Tire of CNY. With Canandaigua off for the Ontario County Fair, Fulton Speedway will close out the month with an Industrial Tire of CNY Sportsman Shootout Qualifier on Saturday, July 25.
After being idle in August, the tour will race three consecutive weekends in September. Utica-Rome will play host to the tour on Sunday, September 6 as part of The New Yorker Weekend. A second visit to Canandaigua on Saturday, September 12 and a $1,500-to-win, Industrial Tire of CNY Sportsman Shootout Qualifier at Brewerton on Friday, September 18 complete the month.
The championship tour will come down to two big events in October. The 30th Outlaw 200 Weekend at Fulton Speedway is the setting for the 9th round of the tour on October 2 and 3 with the running of the 50-lap Industrial Tire of CNY Sportsman Shootout. Just three weeks later, the first ever United Sportsman Alliance Champion will be crowned at Weedsport Speedway at the Upstate Sportsman Championship on Saturday, October 24. Point fund details and other awards will be released as they become available.
Participating track promoters have entered into this program with the betterment of Sportsman racing in mind. Each participating track promoter has been instrumental in the development of this program.
“The idea isn’t to build another travelling series but to simply link our existing big events to give sportsman racers within the region something a little bigger to shoot for,” Reed said.
"Weedsport Speedway has been committed to showcasing the talents of today's Sportsman division from the start. The strength of the division is integral to the future of dirt modified racing. And we are proud to be part of the Upstate Sportsman Alliance series," said Phelps, in his second year of promoting racing at the newly renovated Weedsport Speedway.
“Crate Sportsman racing is a fantastic and affordable racing venue,” said Shea, who is entering his first season of promoting Utica-Rome Speedway alongside wife Kim. “It’s important that we work together to ensure consistent rules and treatment of the racers when they come to our tracks. This alliance starts helps us do that.”
“The fastest growing class in the Northeast is crate Sportsman, and Central New York is a hotbed,” said Corcoran, who has led a successful resurgence of the Canandaigua Motorsports Park the past four years, “taking the steps to organize our races to create more opportunities was an easy decision.”
Family owned and operated, the FX Caprara Car Companies has been a leader in the new and used auto industry for decades. Through that time, they have extended their support of auto racing in many capacities. From car sponsorships and ownerships, track sponsorships, track ownership and racing themselves, the Caprara family has done it.
With locations in Watertown, Pulaski and Alexandria Bay, FX Caprara Car Companies features an extensive selection of New Car brands include Kia, Volkswagen, Fiat, Dodge, Ram, Chrysler, Jeep, Chevy, Ford and Buick vehicles. Their used vehicle inventory consists of cars, vans, trucks, SUVs and crossover vehicles all in clean and reliable condition.
The FX Caprara brand crosses over to Harley Davidson and Honda Motorcycles in their Adams Center location in addition to their Caprara Brothers Outdoor Toy Store in Pulaski. Whether it’s a car, truck, motorcycle, snowmobile, ATV or trailer, FX Caprara has you covered.
Product and associate sponsorship opportunities with the FX Caprara Upstate Sportsman Alliance are available. Groups or companies interested in being involved should contact Cory Reed at (315) 374-1168 or e-mail email@example.com. Or contact your participating track promoter.
Check out the Upstate Sportsman Alliance Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/upstatesportsmanalliance) and Twitter (@USASportsman) pages to keep up to date with series information as it becomes available.
KING OF DIRT SPORTSMAN GETTING NEW SNEAKERS
Pro Stock Drivers Also To Receive New Hoosiers From DeLorenzo Speed Supply
January 31, 2014 (Fonda, NY) – Driven by Hoosier Racing tire the Basement Systems King Of Dirt Crate Sportsman Series got a little sweeter today, as DeLorenzo Speed Supply stepped up to make an offering not only to the Sportsman winner, but the KoD Pro Stock winner as well.
The KoD Series starts its inaugural season April 4, 2015 at Fonda Speedway where the winner of the Ice Melt 30 Lap Crate Sportsman race will receive a pair of brand new Hoosier Racing Tires courtesy of DeLorenzo Speed Supply.
"It's awesome really," said an excited KoD Series Promoter Rob Hazer.
"Matt knows we're finalizing our Hoosier deal this coming week and will have news on that for everyone, but he got ahead of the game and offered to give away a pair of new Hoosier Tires to the Sportsman winner on April 4th for the Ice Melt," continued Rob Hazer.
The news didn't stop there, as now there is a little bonus for the winner of the King Of Dirt Pro Stock Series event on April 11, 2015 at Fonda as well.
"Matt also offered to give the KoD Pro Stock winner a pair of new Hoosier tires on April 11th, which was awesome. It was totally unexpected and really exciting news. We're thankful everyone at DeLorenzo Speed Supply offered that up. Now we potentially can give away 3 Hoosier tires April 4th and 2 on April 11th. That's pretty cool," concluded Rob Hazer.
DeLorenzo Speed Supply sells a variety of VP Racing Fuels and Hoosier Tires among other products helping drivers each week. They are located at 1204 Kings Rd, Schenectady NY 12303. It’s a company started by the track championship team at DeLorenzo Motorsports in conjunction with BBL Motorsports.
Fonda Speedway track promoter Matt DeLorenzo simply said, “We will supply the Sportsman winner with a pair of new Hoosier Racing Tires at the Ice Melt April 4, 2015. We’ll do the same for the Pro Stock winner of the KoD Hood Popper on April 11, 2015.”
Basement Systems King Of Dirt Crate Sportsman Series continues to take shape, while remaining dedicated to the drivers, loyal to supporters, and committed to the tracks. Open the season with the sights and sounds of the track of champions April 4, 2015 for the Ice Melt running 30 laps of wheel-to-wheel racing for $1,000 to win and $100 to take the green. The winner will now be the proud owner of two brand new Hoosier Racing Tires courtesy of DeLorenzo Speed Supply. Big Block Modifieds will also be in action going 40 Laps for $4,000 to win. (We apologize for typo in previous release that said 50 laps)
One week later on April 11, 2015 the King Of Dirt Pro Stock Series kicks off at Fonda Speedway for the Hood Popper 30 Lap event, as part of a regular night of racing. Pro Stocks will draw for heats and top 12 redraw for feature. The winner will be rewarded the spoils of victory including two brand new Hoosier Racing tires courtesy of DeLorenzo Speed Supply. Mark these dates down on the calendar as don’t miss game changing events.
Premiere Event Part Of King Of Dirt Crate Sportsman Series Tour
January 19, 2015 By Rob Hazer (Malta, NY) – When Crate Sportsman drivers kick up clay to start their racing season they will have a schedule planned. Among that schedule will be their weekly plans, travel plans, and premiere events they want to compete in. Surely September 11, 2015 at Albany-Saratoga Speedway will be circled for the 6th annual Northeast Crate Nationals.
THE Nationals planning is well under way for the 50th anniversary season of the great race place. Race promoters Rob Hazer and Scott Duell have a game plan once again for the upcoming season, which is to ensure Northeast Crate Nationals prestige among the great crate races such as the Outlaw 200, Eastern States Weekend, and Super Dirt Week.
Each year the Nationals provide an epic battle between competitors for the honor of becoming Nationals champion, bragging rights, and the spoils of victory. To be center stage under the big time spotlight atop ones peers at a premiere event such as the Northeast Crate Nationals has a certain flare that can’t be imitated or forged. It takes hard work, as races like the Nationals will challenge a driver on every level.
To determine just how challenging is it to win the Northeast Crate Nationals one simply has to look at the statistics. Since it’s inception the speedways represented at the Nationals have been Albany-Saratoga Speedway, Fonda Speedway, Lebanon Valley Speedway, Glen Ridge Motorsports Park, Bear Ridge Speedway, Canaan Fair Speedway, Accord Speedway, Orange County Fair Speedway, Fulton Speedway, Brewerton Speedway, Can-Am Motorsports Park, Skyline Raceway, Woodhull Raceway, Canandaigua Motorsports Park, Utica Rome Speedway, and Mohawk International Raceway.
Of the aforementioned speedways to be represented at the Northeast Crate Nationals no Fingerlakes driver, Southern Tier driver, Western Region driver, or series driver has won, finished top five, or finished top 10 in the fall classic. Albany-Saratoga Speedway has produced two winners, Fonda Speedway has produced two winners, and Fulton Speedway has produced one winner. Simply put it is difficult to win, qualify, or run top 10 at the Nationals, but that’s part of what makes it so attractive.
The level of competition, its support from drivers, and the amount of support from other premiere events is what makes the Northeast Crate Nationals a must attend amongst drivers and fans alike. When September 11, 2015 rolls around the 6th annual Northeast Crate Nationals will be no less than spectacular. The Nationals will be part of the Basement Systems King Of Dirt Crate Sportsman Series this coming season, which event co-promoter Rob Hazer explains.
“We’re already excited about the Nationals in 2015 at Albany-Saratoga Speedway. There’s a lot going on that we started building for this year, while we watched last year’s event unfold. The race format will pretty much remain the same, as it worked out well. Timed heat groups will set the lineups, we will invert the top four again, BUT this time the fastest timer in each group is automatically locked into the redraw. They have the option to run the heat starting fourth and try for the money and trophy or sit it out and wait for the main,” said Rob Hazer.
“One thing we plan on doing this year that we did not last year is lap sponsorships with a rotating distribution system. Being a big part of the King Of Dirt Crate Sportsman Series we want the race to grow from last year. Purse wise we’re hoping to hit the same mark we had last year so anyone who wants to get involved on any monetary level is encouraged to contact us, we’ll make it happen,” continued Hazer.
The Street Stock division will once again join the headline Crate Sportsman division at the Nationals in 2015 for Street Stock Nationals Showdown II. “We’re bringing the Street Stock guys back for the Nationals, because they don’t really have too many big events in the fall. There are maybe 3 that I can think of including the Nationals. Now don’t worry Pro Stock fans, we gave them a series of their own,” said Hazer.
“Honestly we’re looking to put more showmanship into the event this year and Lyle understands that’s where we may have fell a little short last season. Driver introductions, 4-wide salute, special honors, and even some fan interaction were things we planned, but had to bypass due to time. Still the race was epic, but we all felt we could do more. And we will,” concluded Nationals co-promoter Rob Hazer.
One thing for sure the Northeast Crate Nationals will once again be epic for all those in attendance, as the promotional team of Scott Duell and Rob Hazer working in conjunction with the experience and knowledge of Lyle DeVore are sure to have a spectacle for all to see on a very special date in United States History, September 11th. A special honor to 9/11 and tributes are said to be in the works.
Recently released by the Northeast Crate Nationals are the all-time top 10 point standings for the event. A new leader emerged after the 2014 Nationals, while some others climbed into the top 10. They are as follows: Chad Edwards (204), Mike Tholin (199), Jack Gentile (182), Brian Pessolano (182), Jeremiah Munson (174), Scott Duell (164), Tim Hartman Jr. (158), Derrick McGrew (150), Dave Constantino (134), Jeremy Pitts (117).