Bobby Podolak Keeps Sponsor Happy With big Empire Super Sprint Victory at Brockville. BROCKVILLE, ONT. -- You can call it fate or maybe a little luck, but when the Empire Super Sprints (ESS) invade the Brockville Ontario Speedway, Swiffer, a...
Bobby Podolak Keeps Sponsor Happy With big Empire Super Sprint Victory at Brockville.
BROCKVILLE, ONT. -- You can call it fate or maybe a little luck, but when the Empire Super Sprints (ESS) invade the Brockville Ontario Speedway, Swiffer, a product of Procter and Gamble, backs the nights racing. Swiffer also has their name on the side of the wing of Bobby Podolak's sprinter and this past Friday night the Swiffer logo was in victory lane.
Leading all 25 laps of the Spectro Oils Canadian Invasion event, the Auburn, N.Y. veteran collected his first win since May of 2003, ironically at Brockville where Swiffer approached Podolak, and his 10th of his long ESS career. But, most importantly it was the best way to keep your sponsor happy.
"You know who's up in the stands so I guess you try maybe a little harder." said a matter of fact by Podolak. "But, an upfront start was the key and this new car has just been tremendous. Everywhere we go this car (a 2003 Maxim) has been fast, it responds to your changes and it's been getting my confidence back."
When a deal was struck with then teammate Jim Livingston, Podolak received the newer mount and a newer zest for racing. "With the old car, if it wasn't right or I just didn't feel comfortable I would just pull off to save my equipment and keep out of the way of others. This car though, I have been coming from the back and getting good finishes." Podolak noted. "Tonight with me starting up front I knew I was going to have a good chance and it was just so good up top and here we are,"
Taking the lead right at the drop of the green, Podolak took to the cushion that was on the very top of the quick quarter-mile oval, he survived several cautions and challenges from Matt Norrie early and Billy White late for the popular victory. "The cautions help me a bunch, every time we were ready to get into lapped traffic the caution lights would come on. We were lucky" said Podolak.
The final caution came with three laps to go which gave White another crack at the race long leader but this was to be Podolak's night. "I gave it a shot but I guess I'm suppose to get second here. I took second to Lance (Yonge) back in May and now tonight. But, it will come, we'll get 'em. " said the 2002 ESS rookie of the year who still is looking for his first career A-Main victory.
At the checkers it was Podolak ahead of White for the win, Luke Eriksen brought his Manchester Wood sponsored J&J home for a fine third just ahead of young 19 year old lady racer Jessica Zemken. Alain Bergeron was in for fifth with Matt Norrie, Dan Kaszubinski, Bubby Kerrick, up from 19th to collect the Lane's Yamaha Hard Charger bonus, Doug Norrie and Jeff VanDusen rounding out the top ten.
The pace was slowed many times which kept the race in doubt throughout. The first was most severe which also brought out the red lights on lap two. R.C. Faigle slowed on the front stretch with the field attempting to avoid him. Russ Bennett and Jeff Cook came together with Cook flipping over in the infield. Lap four saw Kyle Moffit spinning, Don Sharp Jr. did the same one tour later. Lance Yonge brought out two consecutive cautions on laps eight and eleven and under ESS rules he had to go to the pits on the two-caution rule. Kyle Wilson stopped in turn four on lap 17 and John Karklin Jr. brought out the final caution on lap 23.
Taking the Car Mate Trailer heats were Podolak, White and Doug Norrie with the Northwood 2 Construction/Walt's Hobby Dash won by Karklin Jr.
ESS NOTES: Despite threatening weather surrounding the beautiful town of Brockville, 23 sprints and a good crowd came out for the second visit of ESS for 2005--.With rain drops falling, it was decided to cut the B-Main and start all cars on hand but Ray Preston's rear end troubles saw him miss the A-Main cut--With Yonge's early departure it moved Bergeron on top of the Spectro Oils Canadian Invasion points--After a weekend off it then becomes a big three race weekend to help celebrate the Labor Day weekend. Stops at Autodrome's Granby and Drummond followed by the final visit to Utica-Rome. It marks the final full point shows for both the Canadian Invasion Series and the overall ESS championship with the cancellation of the Oct. 14th event at Five Mile Point.
Heat 1 -- Bob Podolak, Lance Yonge, R.C. Faigle, Dan Kaszubinski, Rick Wilson, Bubby Kerrick, Jeff Cook.
Heat 2 -- Billy White, John Karklin Jr., Jessica Zemken, Matt Norrie, Alain Bergeron, Kyle Moffit, Nick Fratto, George Ely.
Heat 3 -- Doug Norrie, Jeff VanDusen, Randy Years, Don Sharp Jr., Kyle Wilson, Russ Bennett, Ray Preston.
Northwood 2 Construction/Walt's Hobby Dash -- Karklin Jr.
A-MAIN -- BOBBY PODOLAK, White, Eriksen, Zemken, Bergeron, M. Norrie, Kaszubinski, Kerrick, D. Norrie, VanDusen, Years, Fratto, Sharp Jr., Karklin Jr., Moffit, Ely, Faigle, K. Wilson, Bennett, R. Wilson, Yonge, Cook.