Rick Wilson Survives and Excites Fellow Canadian Fans With ESS Triumph at Cornwall. CORNWALL -- It was darn near a full moon in the sky overhead of the fully packed Cornwall Motor Speedway and the demons were out for the Empire Super Sprint...
Rick Wilson Survives and Excites Fellow Canadian Fans With ESS Triumph at Cornwall.
CORNWALL -- It was darn near a full moon in the sky overhead of the fully packed Cornwall Motor Speedway and the demons were out for the Empire Super Sprint (ESS)/Spectro Oils Canadian Invasion event on Sunday. Being the big survivor on the night was Joyceville, Ont. Rick Wilson as he held off a stiff late race challenge from Don Sharp Jr. to win his first ESS event of 2005 and seventh of his career.
"This is just amazing, I have been trying for six years to win in a sprinter here at Cornwall and now it finally happened and in front of this great crowd!" said the happy winner who celebrated with a wing dance. "I just plane sucked during the heats so we made some changes and then I knew we had a good car for the feature. I just felt that we had to stay clean for a while, don't get in any accidents and then make our move. I got by Lance (Yonge) and then Donny (Sharp Jr.) for the lead so I was thinking the race was mine. Then Donny got back by me and it made me take notice and run just a little harder."
A little harder he did, on lap 22 when Sharp Jr. swept by Wilson, the driver know around these lands as the "Joyceville Jet" did a never lift, outside turn three pass to get back by Sharp Jr. for the lead and the win. With a wild celebration, the big Cornwall throng was happy for their fellow countryman.
While it was an exciting battle to the finish, the 25 lap A-Main was marred by three red flags, four cautions and a re-fuel stop. No one was injured in the many flips but many cars did go home with heavy damage on the ultra-quick quarter-mile oval.
Sharp Jr.'s Maxim chassis sprinter sponsored by his dad's Stonework Business started the event on the pole and the New Hampshire resident fought back all the reds and cautions to stay up front. Wilson's Focus Eye J&J started in 17th and was pecking his way to the front as the laps moved on. He first cracked the top five on a lap five restart and then up to second on lap nine.
Just one quick tour later, Wilson drove by Sharp Jr. for the lead but the battle wasn't done there. Wilson took to the top with Sharp Jr. down low. Lap after lap, the #28NH was trying to make this inside pass and on lap 22 he did. But going into turn three he got a bit sideways and that was all Wilson needed for the re-pass and win.
"I tried, I really wanted to get by him and win. He (Wilson) is so fast and tough, but I wasn't giving up." noted Sharp on the thrilling duel. "I just got a little crossed up and of course he never did lift and blew right by me on the top. I gave it my best but he beat me, it was a fun race."
At the finish it was Wilson ahead of Sharp Jr., Jeff VanDusen backed up his win the previous night at Drummond with a solid third place finish ahead of Nick Fratto and John Karklin Jr. Rounding out the top ten were Jeff Cook, Bubby Kerrick, Kyle Moffit, Russ Bennett and Doug Norrie.
Just getting the first lap in was a chore of the night: On the first try, Canadians Glenn Styres and Alain Bergeron did a double flip on the back stretch. Styres' mount went through the sponsor billboards. But, with all the other stoppages, both sprinters found their way back into the fray later on. Try two found R.C. Faigle and Randy Years performing a wild double flip of their own, both cars were damaged too much to com back. The third try saw Ray Preston loop around for the first caution. Bob Podolak lost power on lap two for the second yellow. Doug Norrie also stopped on lap four for another caution with the final red coming out on lap five when Luke Eriksen tipped over also involving Kyle Moffit, Moffit did return. Matt Norrie jumped out of gear on lap seven for another caution with the final caution out for Doug Norrie on lap 14.
Taking the Car Mate Trailer heats were Years, Kerrick and Cook. The Computer Sense/Walt's Hobby Dash was taken by Kerrick with Preston copping the KSE Racing Products B-Main.
ESS NOTES: A fine field of 26 sprints on a beautiful Sunday night at Cornwall--The flips weren't in the A-Main alone, Dan Kaszubinski performed a wild series off turn three during his heat ending his night early--Russ Bennett made hard contact with the turn four wall during his heat heavily damaging his car, while the field was slowing down Doug Emery also tipped over. Bennett jumped in Billy White's mount and salvaged a top ten. Emery also came back but failed to qualify--The ESS Tour 2005 will make it's return to Cornwall as the final leg of a three race weekend on July 17th--Next week it's two more Spectro Oils Canadian Invasion events, this time out to the Western part of Ontario with visits to Ohsweken and Merrittville on Friday and Saturday.
Heat 1 -- Randy Years, R.C. Faigle, Don Sharp Jr., Lance Yonge, Kyle Wilson, Brian Glasser.
Heat 2 -- Bubby Kerrick, Doug Norrie, Jeff VanDusen, Kyle Moffit, Bob Podolak, Rick Wilson.
Heat 3 -- Jeff Cook, Luke Eriksen, Matt Norrie, Nick Fratto, Mike VanDusen, Jim Livingston.
Computer Sense/Walt's Hobby Dash -- Kerrick
B-Main -- Ray Preston, Glenn Styres, John Karklin Jr., Russ Bennett.
Added Starter -- Alain Bergeron.
Did Not Qualify -- Billy White, Dan Kaszubinski, Doug Emery.
A-Main -- RICK WILSON, Sharp Jr., J. VanDusen, Fratto, Karklin Jr., Cook, Kerrick, Moffit, Bennett, D. Norrie, Preston, M. Norrie, Bergeron, Styres, M. VanDusen, Yonge, Eriksen, Livingston, Glasser, Podolak, Faigle, Years, K. Wilson.
Gater News Lap Leaders -- Sharp Jr. 1-9, R. Wilson 10-21, Sharp Jr. 22, Wilson 23-25.
Lane's Yamaha Hard Charger -- R. Wilson (16 pos.) $50.
Brodix Cylinder Heads Halfway -- R. Wilson $50.