Billy Krull Wins First Ever ESS Event with Triumph at Frogtown HOGANSBURG, N.Y. - After several heatbreaks during the first half of the Empire Super Sprints (ESS) Tour 2004, Wheatfield, N.Y.'s Billy Krull can now put some of that behind him.
Billy Krull Wins First Ever ESS Event with Triumph at Frogtown
HOGANSBURG, N.Y. - After several heatbreaks during the first half of the Empire Super Sprints (ESS) Tour 2004, Wheatfield, N.Y.'s Billy Krull can now put some of that behind him. Leading all but one lap of Saturday nights 25 lap A-Main at the Frogtown International Speedway, the 2002 National Sprint Car 360 Rookie of the Year collected his first ever ESS victory.
Krull took the lead on a lap one restart from Brad Knab and led the rest of the way in what looked like a calm Saturday evening drive. What the big crowd didn't know was that his victory was hard earned physically as his Jays Stop & Wash, Eagle chassis sprinter went the distance without power steering. In victory lane, Krull could barely raise his arms to accept his congratulations.
"I'm just dead tired, my arms are still shaking. About five laps to go I was ready to drive this thing off the backstretch and into the woods." said the driver known as "Zoomer" to many of his friends. "I just basically hung on for as long as I could but I just figured that someone was going to pass me the way the season has gone so far."
But, for once, good fortune came the way to Krull and his dad who is his only crew member when they attend each ESS event. "It's funny, we are now back to all of last years equipment. The new car wasn't right so we switched and then we blew the new motor at Utica-Rome so this is last years engine with some 30 races on it." said the former DIRT sportsman star. "But, this combination worked great for us last year as we won several races and now it looks like it will work again. This is just awesome, to win in ESS with all these great drivers... this will sink in and mean a lot."
The Frogtown oval was lightning quick with times in the 14 second range which left many fans attending the event on the Akwesasne Indian Reservation in awe. The multi-groove track saw the winged sprinters choosing many lanes which made for a wild 25 lap affair.
Knab blasted off from his outside pole starting spot to lead the first lap. It took two restarts to get the second lap scored but on the first restart is when Krull swept by for the lead that he would eventually hold on to the end. Last years ESS rookie of the year Nick Fratto took over second on lap six and at times closed in to make a bid for the lead. Krull though held off all the challenges of Fratto and lapped traffic for the win which was in doubt right until the final corner of the final lap.
"I was just trying to stay down low when all of a sudden a car came down and pinch me into the infield. I hit this berm and did a wheelie like you wouldn't believe and I just said 'oh no, I'm going to lose another won'". Mentioned Krull and luckily he crossed the line first to collect ESS career win #1.
Behind Krull was Fratto with his Geneva Curbing #F1, Jeff VanDusen came from his 13th place starting spot to place third and collect the Lane's Yamaha Hard Charger bonus, Alain Bergeron finished fourth to shake some of his bad luck with Lance Yonge in fifth. Rounding out the top ten were Doug Emery, Knab, Kyle Moffit who also advanced 10 positions,.with Jeff Cook and John Karklin Jr. coming back from a lap one spins.
Five cautions did slow the blistering pace: Tim Kelly slowed on lap one. On the restart Cook and Don Sharp Jr looped around. On the second restart Randy Years struck the restart cone with the rope tangling around the sprinter of Karklin causing him to spin around. Luke Eriksen spun around in turn four on lap 16 with Bubby Kerrick and Sharp Jr. getting around on lap 18 for the final yellow flag.
Taking the Engler Machine and Tool heat events were Years, Eriksen, and Krull. The Walt's Hobby Dash was won by Fratto with the KSE Racing Products B-Main copped by Moffit.
ESS NOTES: A total of 25 sprinters made the tow to Frogtown after the first two events on the weekend were rained out...Rick Wilson and Brian Dumigan were involved in a violent double flip during the B-Main. Wilson was shaken slightly with both cars suffering heavy damage...Tim Kelly also rolled his sprint during the heat events but he did return to run the A-Main...Native American and Ohsweken Speedway owner Glenn Styres decided to make a long haul to Frogtown to visit with Akwesasne friends...A hot air balloon from a near by festival in Canada came down over electrical lines off of turn three. Power went out at the speedway for nearly two hours delaying the program. Once the power was restored, Frogtown officials did a good job moving the show along.
Heat 1 - Randy Years, Lance Yonge, Brian Glasser, Mike Stelter, Bob Podolak, Justin Barger.
Heat 2 - Luke Eriksen, John Karklin Jr., Brad Knab, Bubby Kerrick, Doug Emery, Dan Kaszubinski.
Heat 3 - Billy Krull, Nick Fratto, Alain Bergeron, Jeff Cook, Jeff VanDusen, Russ Bennett.
Walt's Hobby Dash - Fratto.
B-Main - Kyle Moffit, Don Sharp Jr., Glenn Styres, Justin Harris.
Added Starter - Tim Kelly.
Did Not Qualify - Brian Dumigan, Rick Wilson.
A-MAIN - BILLY KRULL, Fratto, VanDusen, Bergeron, Yonge, Emery, Knab, Moffit, Cook, Karklin Jr., Kerrick, Sharp Jr., Barger, Stelter, Kaszubinski, Eriksen, Styres, Bennett, Harris, Glasser, Podolak, Kelly, Years.
Gater News Lap Leaders - Knab 1, Krull 2-25.
Lane's Yamaha Hard Charger - VanDusen (10 pos.) $50.
Brodix Cylinder Heads Halfway - Krull $50.
Winners Bonuses: Car-Mate Trailers $50, ATL Fuel Cells $100, Penske Shocks $100, Hank's Performance Products $50, Saldana Racing Products $50, B&B Oval Track Products $50, Total Seal $50, Real Racing Wheels $50, The Brake Man $50, American Racing Tires $50, Racing Optics $30, Frankland Racing Supple $25, Red's Speed Shop $25, Behrent's Performance Warehouse $20, MRE Productions $10.
Weld Racing Hard Luck - Dumigan $100.
Design 500 Racewear - Sharp Jr. $100, Yonge $50.
Penske Shocks - Karklin Jr. $100.
Leaf Racewear - VanDusen $75.
M & W Aluminum Products - Stelter $75.
KSE Racing Products - Moffit $50.
Zemco Headers - Yonge $50.
Joe Hunt Magnetos - Kelly $50.
Engler Machine and Tool - Years, Eriksen, Krull $25.
DMI - Years $25.
HRP - Barger $25.