ESS: URC/ESS Challenge results 2003-10-11

ELBRIDGE, N.Y. -- There were two very good reasons for Weissport, Pa.'s Pete Green to celebrate in victory lane at the Rolling Wheels Raceway Park on Saturday night. First: With just two laps to go he dove under race long leader Tim Hogue to...

ELBRIDGE, N.Y. -- There were two very good reasons for Weissport, Pa.'s Pete Green to celebrate in victory lane at the Rolling Wheels Raceway Park on Saturday night. First: With just two laps to go he dove under race long leader Tim Hogue to make the winning pass in the 25 lap Empire Super Sprints (ESS)/United Racing Club (URC) Challenge Series event. Second: The $3,000 victory was dedicated to Green's grandfather who passed away just one week prior making for a very emotional victory lane with family and friends.

"I was just a little pumped up tonight." Pinned the driver of the Green Motorsports #4 J&J. "With the passing of my grandfather I came in here looking to get a win for him. I think as a family that we had just a little bit more reason to try and get a win tonight. Some one must have been smiling because here we are in victory lane."

Green, a regular on the URC tour, started the Challenge Series event on the pole but it was outside pole starting Hogue that took the lead on the start with his Tastykake backed #39. Hogue, who came in the night's race 13th in URC points, was looking for his biggest win of his young career and made a quick pace on the tacky Elbridge, N.Y. oval.

Laps were clicked off in record fashion with Hogue holding command lap after lap. "I was trying just about everything to get by Timmy but just couldn't get the momentum to get by." Said Green. That was until the final of three cautions were displayed on lap 23 which change the entire complexion of the event.

"My car was a bit tight in the final laps and under caution I looked up and noticed that I had my wing to far back." Green noted "I moved it forward and when the green came out I had a great run through one and two and got to go under Timmy to make the pass."

Ironically the "tightness" of the sprinter that Green was referring to was what doomed Hogue in his hopes for the victory. "I went into turn one on the restart and drove the same line I did for 22 laps. Just this time my car pushed which bogged down the motor. That was all Pete needed." Said a dejected Hogue just after the event. "My crew was telling me that he was getting faster as the race went on but I think we could have held on for the win. Just one little mistake and that's all it takes in sprint racing."

Green held off Hogue's bid to take the lead and collect his third career victory. "This is easily my biggest win so far." Nailed Green. "Between dedicating the victory and also winning a Challenge Series race this will be tough to top."

At the checkered flag of Ben Vitale it Green nipping Hogue and four more of the URC faithful to the finish stripe. Former champ on the tour celebrating it's 56th season was Dave McGough in taking third with Brian Seidel in fourth, Trevor Lewis fifth and former ESS/URC Challenge series winner at Rolling Wheels Kramer Williamson taking sixth. Rob Dietrick was the first ESS regular across the line in seventh with 2003 ESS champ Mike Lutz coming fro his 26th place start to take eighth. Bully Hill Nationals winner Scott Bonnell was ninth followed by many-time URC victor Mike Haggenbottom in tenth.

The three cautions in the fast paced 25 lapper were minor in nature. Scott Pursell got spun around on the original start and had a flat tire that put him out of action, Doug Emery, who was running in fifth, looped his mount on lap eight and 2003 URC champion Dave Ely spun around causing for the two lap shootout.

Taking the six heat wins by virtue of passing points were Green, Kevin Welsh, Seidel, Ed Aikin, Chris Coyle and Emery making for an URC sweep. The twin C-Mains were won by Haggenbottom and Drum with Josh Weller taking the B-Main. The special Walt's Hobby Dash was copped by Akin.

ESS/URC Notes: A big field of 54 sprinters filled the pits for the big crowd on hand--.The field was broken down with 27 cars from ESS, 21 URC regulars, 3 from the Patriot Sprint Group, Western Pa.'s Bonnell and Southern Ontario Sprint teenage driver Cody Geldart and DIRT Sportsman star Shawn Donath in Emery's back-up sprinter--Two sprinters found themselves on their wings during the night. DIRT mod star Chuck Hebing with a violent flip in the first heat and Dan Deming did the same on the start of heat three. Both drivers were fine--The 26 car feature field was made up of 16 URC cars, 9 ESS regulars and Bonnell--.Lutz and Curt Michael used provisionals to start the A-Main--URC has one event left on their tour with a non-point event Saturday night Oct. 18th as a part of Thunder on the Hill at the Grandview Speedway. ESS will close their 20th Anniversary Tour with their annual awards banquet on November 15th.

RESULTS:

Heat 1 -- Pete Green, Scott Bonnell, Scott Pursell.

Heat 2 -- Kevin Welsh, Rob Dietrick, Dave Ely.

Heat 3 -- Brian Seidel, Trevor Lewis, Kramer Williamson.

Heat 4 -- Ed Aikin, Dave McGough, Randy West.

Heat 5 -- Chris Coyle, Tim Hogue, Don Sharp Jr.,

Heat 6 -- Doug Emery, Ray Preston, Tim Kelly.

C-Main 1 -- Mike Haggenbottom, Mike Lutz.

C-Main 2 -- Kyle Drum, John Karklin Jr.

B-Main -- Josh Weller, Dan Kaszubinski, Lance Yonge, Mike Woodring, Bob Podolak, Haggenbottom.

Provisionals -- Mike Lutz, Curt Michael.

Did Not Qualify -- Bubby Kerrick, Bill Coffey, Chuck Hebing, Billy Krull, Nick Fratto, Danny Massey, Kyle Moffit, Jason Clauss, Jeff VanDusen, Alain Bergeron, Jim Senzio, Dan Deming, Kyle Drum, Mike Stelter, Frank Senzio, Randy Years, Midge Miller, Justin Barger, Ashley Parlett, Rick Wilson, Kyle Wilson, Shawn Donath, Bill Brian Jr., Jared Zimbardi, Daniel Lampron, Cody Geldart, George Ely, John Karklin Jr.

A-MAIN -- PETE GREEN, Hogue, McGough, Seidel, Lewis, Williamson, Dietrick, Lutz, Bonnell, Haggenbottom, Woodring, Yonge, Weller, Welsh, Kaszubinski, Michael, Emery, Aikin, Coyle, West, Preston, Kelly, Sharp Jr., Ely, Podolak, Pursell..

-ess-

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Series Sprint
Drivers Nick Fratt , Justin Barger , Bill Coffey
Teams Williams