ESS: Utica-Rome results 2005-05-29

Dan Kaszubinski Beats Lance Yonge for Empire Super Sprint/Valvoline Cup A-Main Victory at Utica-Rome. VERNON, N.Y. -- The 2004 Empire Super Sprint (ESS) champion Lance Yonge was going for the weekend hat trick if you will--but it's only ...

Dan Kaszubinski Beats Lance Yonge for Empire Super Sprint/Valvoline Cup A-Main Victory at Utica-Rome.

VERNON, N.Y. -- The 2004 Empire Super Sprint (ESS) champion Lance Yonge was going for the weekend hat trick if you will--but it's only fitting that the one driver that stood in his way of the weekend sweep was Dan Kaszubinski. Leading all 25 laps and holding off Yonge on a lap 24 restart, the driver of the Autotech of Syracuse #20 picked up his first A-Main victory of the season in fine fashion.

The win marked 26 for Kaszubinski's ESS career which saw him pocket $1700 and a starting berth in the All-Star Dash at the Bully Hill Fall Sprint Nationals on September 10th at the Black Rock Speedway. The 25 lap A-Main sponsored by the Valvoline Cup National Point Series played host to the tradition big crowd at the fast half-mile in Vernon, N.Y.

"I have to admit, starting spot I think was a big factor tonight. As good as Lance (Yonge) is going right now you need all the help you can get to beat him." said Kaszubinski after piloting his Maxim sprinter to victory lane. "I really don't know if I was as good as he was since he had to come through the field but they told me on the last lap restart that he really didn't make a charge. Hey, we will take the win, it's not been the best of starts and tonight we finally felt like we had some speed."

While always very modest on his talents, Kaszubinski was indeed good on this evening. Taking the lead at the drop of Matt Burdick's green flag, Kaszubinski first held off a strong challenge from Jeff Cook that saw the two swap leads several times on the track, then he battled heavy lapped traffic and finally it all came down to the final lap dash to the finish.

Yonge was looking to make it three in a row after taking victory at Brockville on Friday and Can-Am on Saturday. Coming from his 10th place starting spot, he first cracked the top five on lap 14, fourth on lap 18, third on lap 20 and finally into second on lap 21. While he was closing in some and with lapped cars figuring in, the lap 24 caution made it for a battle to the finish.

While the drama did build, Kaszubinski and his high lane proved to dash all hopes and he went on to the well earned win. "I didn't have anything for Dan if he went high on the restart, my car just couldn't run low at all." said Yonge on that last lap duel. "Hey, Dan earned it. I wanted three wins but you know he his going to get his wins, he is good and tonight he beat us."

Kaszubinski, who will be a father in September, has a goal of the ESS title for 2005 but knows he has an uphill climb. "Lance is just amazing, I mean he is putting up (Mike) Woodring like numbers. Every race he starts in the back and he's in the top three at the finish." Kaszubinski says of his friend and challenger. "We just have to hope he drops out of a few shows for any of us to have a chance. He's tough, we just have to get better."

At the checkers it was Kaszubinski ahead of Yonge with Pennsylvania's Dave Ely home in for third. After starting in 13th, the 2003 United Racing Club champion collected the Lane's Yamaha hard charger bonus. Cook hung on and took fourth, Jeff VanDusen's ProSpas #56D in for fifth. Rounding out the top ten were Bryan Howland, Warren Alexson, the Salt City Signs #D28 of Shawn Donath, R.C. Faigle's Miller Lite #21A and Mike VanDusen.

Billy White spun around on the original start to bunch up the field again. On lap four, young lady Jessica Zemken lost power and Craig Lane lost his front end for the caution on lap 24.

Taking the Car Mate Trailers heat events were Kyle Moffit, Doug Norrie, Howland and Jeff VanDusen. The Walt's Hobby Dash was taken by Bobby Podolak with Bubby Kerrick copping the KSE Racing Products B-Main.

ESS NOTES: Another solid field of 35 sprints in the pits for the first of three Utica-Rome visits--Making first ESS starts for 2005 were Ely, Zemken, the 2004 Utica-Rome sportsman champion who was making her first ever sprint car start, Ohio's J.R. Stewart and Jonathan Eriksen--.With cash and winner's bonuses, Kaszubinski's take home was worth $2,495 --.The stars and cars for the Empire Super Sprint Tour 2005 will get a well deserved weekend off before tackling the big half-mile at the Little Valley Speedway on Friday June 10th.


Heat 1 -- Kyle Moffit, R.C. Faigle, Mike Stelter, Dave Ely, Doug Emery.

Heat 2 -- Doug Norrie, Lance Yonge, Shawn Donath, Mike VanDusen, Alain Bergeron

Heat 3 -- Bryan Howland, Jeff Cook, Dan Kaszubinski, John Karklin Jr., Don Sharp Jr.

Heat 4 -- Jeff VanDusen, Bob Podolak, Jessica Zemken, Warren Alexson., Russ Bennett.

Walt's Hobby Dash -- Podolak.

B-Main -- Bubby Kerrick, Billy White, Craig Lane, J.R. Stewart.

Provisional Starters -- Nick Fratto, Luke Eriksen.

Did Not Qualify -- Ray Preston, Blase Regina, Jonathan Eriksen, Brian Glasser, Scott Davis, Cory Sparks, Randy Years, Matt Norrie, Frank Senzio.

A-MAIN -- DAN KASZUBINSKI, Yonge, Ely, Cook, J. VanDusen, Howland, Alexson, Donath, Faigle, M. VanDusen, Kerrick, Stewart, Emery, Karklin Jr., Sharp Jr., Stelter, L. Eriksen, D. Norrie, Bennett, Bergeron, White, Moffit, Fratto, Lane, Zemken, Podolak.


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Series Sprint
Drivers Nick Fratt