ESS: Ransomville Speedway 2000-07-21

Steve Dow Edges Lance Yonge For ESS Glory at Ransomville. by Dean Reynolds RANSOMVILLE, N.Y. - A lap 16 caution set the stage for a classic two car duel. Steve Dow and Lance Yonge brought the crowd to their feet as the Empire Super Sprint Tour...

Steve Dow Edges Lance Yonge For ESS Glory at Ransomville.
by Dean Reynolds

RANSOMVILLE, N.Y. - A lap 16 caution set the stage for a classic two car duel. Steve Dow and Lance Yonge brought the crowd to their feet as the Empire Super Sprint Tour 2000 event Friday night at the Ransomville Speedway wasn't decided until the last turn on the last lap.

Dow's #70 was on the top with Yonge's #5 down low coming off turn four side by side. With the checkered flag waving high in the air, it was Dow's line providing the advantage and the A-Main victory. The win mark his second of the 2000 season which is also his second career on the ESS tour.

"When the yellow came out (on lap 16) I just tried to stay smooth and hold my line." noted Dow on the closing stages. "I thought I was alright until Lance (Yonge) dove right underneath me, I knew then I had to drive harder than I was. The corners are so tough here, you really need to hit them right or you could loose all your speed. When you have someone as good as Lance trying to pass you, you have to be right on all the time"

Dow was explaining the move Yonge made on him on lap 17 when he came off turn two under Dow briefly taking the lead. Dow then opened up his lead slightly after that but Yonge showcased a never-say-die style to give the Niagara Frontier fans a memorable finish.

"When I picked up my pace I thought I might be alright as I didn't see Lance again. That was until turn four on the last lap! He gave me a scare but I was hoping I could keep the momentum on the outside. Luckily I had the right line to get the win." noted Dow afterwards. "I just have to thank my whole family for this win. They are really behind me and give me the best car possible. To get some wins now really makes all the hard work they put in worth it."

Dow inherited the pole starting position as scheduled pole sitter Dan Kaszubinski made contact with the turn four wall during a pre-race warmup period. The damage was enough to knock the fifth place in points Kaszubinski out of the A-Main. With the inside line moving up, Dow took the green from the pole and into the lead at the start.

The family owned Henchcraft built sprint opened up a big lead early over last years Ransomville winner Rob Dietrick. Lapped traffic figured into the action early but Dow was up for the challenge and kept his advantage.

Rick Wilson was the first to make his charge from the back as he cracked the top five for the first time on lap eight from his 13th place start. Up to fourth on lap nine, third at the halfway mark and then into second on a lap 11 restart.

Yonge was next to break through and he eventually moved into third on lap 15 which set the stage when the second and final caution came out on lap 16. On the drop of the green, Yonge quickly passed Wilson and set his sights on Dow in hopes for his fourth win on the Tour 2000.

It all came down to the final corner where Dow used his cushion hugging lane to collect the victory. Yonge finished second ahead of the Price Paving #27c of Wilson, who also took home the Walt's Hobby Hard Charger bonus, current ESS point leader Mike Woodring used many late race passes to finish fourth ahead of Ray Preston. Rounding out the top ten was Bob Podolak, Scott Holcomb, R.C. Faigle, Dietrick and Doug Emery.

Two cautions slowed the pace on the Ransomville highbanks: Mike Stelter, Rich Wood and Bill Coffey came together in turn two on lap 11. Wood, who landed on his side, and Coffey were done for the night with Stelter restarting. Don Sharp Jr. spun on the frontstretch on lap 16 to provide for the late race drama.

The Brodix Cylinder Heads heat events were won by Holcomb, Coffey and Kaszubinski. The Walt's Hobby Dash was won by Woodring.

ESS NOTES: With a threat of rain all day and night, 22 sprints were in the pits in front of a good size crowd...The entire Ransomville management did a great job getting the show in with the threat of rain. The ESS A-Main was completed by 9 p.m....The best of "America's Race Cars" will now head to the CVRA circuit with stops at Albany-Saratoga on Friday and Devil's Bowl Speedway on Sunday.

{TB} RESULTS: Heat 1 - Scott Holcomb, Lance Yonge, Rick Wilson, R.C. Faigle, Rob Dietrick, Randy Years. Heat 2 - Bill Coffey, Mike Woodring, Bubby Kerrick, Steve Dow, Doug Emery, Tim Zimbardi. Heat 3 - Dan Kaszubinski, Ray Preston, Bob Podolak, Mike Stelter, Tom Taber, Rich Wood. Walt's Hobby Dash - Woodring. A-MAIN - STEVE DOW, Yonge, Wilson, Woodring, Preston, Podolak, Holcomb, Faigle, Dietrick, Emery, Stelter, Taber, Kerrick, Years, Don Sharp Jr., Alain Bergeron, Zimbardi, J.T. Henderberg, Dick Spadaro, Coffey, Wood. Did Not Start - Kaszubinski. Lap Leader - Dow 1-20. Walt's Hobby Hard Charger - Wilson (10 pos.) $50. Vicomp Graphics Halfway - Dow $50. Winner's Bonuses: Car-Mate Dealers $50, Pro Shocks $100, Tire Comp East $75, Griffin Thermal Products $50, Total Seal $50, Hank's Performance Products $50, Bicknell Racing Products $35, Behrent's Performance Warehouse $30, Red's Speed Shop $25. Other Bonuses: Weld Racing Hard Luck - Wood $75. Penske Shocks - Emery $150. Design 500 - Sharp Jr. $100, Preston $50. Bailey Racing Products - Years $35. Total Seal - Emery $30. Thunder Mtn. Wings - Wilson $20. Powder Birns - Kerrick $10. Dave Ely Racing - Yonge, Woodring, Preston $10. Lauterborn Electric - Years $10.

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Series Sprint
Drivers Bill Coffey