Oswego, NY - It wasn't a spectacular night of racing at Oswego Speedway Saturday night. After two straight weeks of rain, most were a little too anxious to get back to racing. Howard Page, the winner or survivor if you will, of the Kinney Drug ...
Oswego, NY - It wasn't a spectacular night of racing at Oswego Speedway Saturday night. After two straight weeks of rain, most were a little too anxious to get back to racing. Howard Page, the winner or survivor if you will, of the Kinney Drug Stores-Wendy's Restaurants 50 lap main, was first to admit that the race wasn't pretty.
"We got lucky," said Howard in victory lane, " Almost everyone else crashed. We got some late breaks. It was a tough race for everybody I think. I got lucky in one of those accidents that I didn't get caught up in in. I looked ahead and hoped I didn't get hit from behind. Ordway had a tire going down there and had to pit toward the end. I don't know if we could have caught him. He was fast. It was a rough night all around and I'm happy to be here. It's been a while. I want to thank all my guys. They worked like hell. I wasn't in a very good mood after that heat accident and going into the consi. I'd like to also thank the sponsors who help me, Eddie Bellinger, Vashaw's Collision, Slice and Go Deli, Front Door, Ingles Performance, and Advance Auto Parts. I would kind of like to apologize to the fans, however, as it wasn't a very pretty race all around."
In the companion features, J.J. Andrews took home his first-ever feature victory in a quieter limited super main that saw only two yellows and Bill Moore fended off Tony White for the super stock feature win.
The Kinney Drug Stores 50 started off with a massive pileup and it went downhill from there for many. Just going into turn two after the drop of the green, a front running car got sideways and collected just about everyone behind. Bearing the worst of the melee were 2000 track champ Greg Furlong and Joey Hawksby. Bob Goutermout, Joey Payne, Tim Snyder, Brian Sweeney, Hal LaTulip, Shannon Groves, Keith Gilliam, Ken Bell, Jerry Curran and Jeff Holbrook were among the others to enter the pits on their own or on the hook. Most would make the restart, some not, and others fixed their cars in the pits and got back into things later on as machines dropped by the wayside. Bob Bond took up the initial lead, but only two laps were completed before the second red flag stopped things as a six-car pileup blocked the track this time. Included were Holbrook, Jack Smith, in the 68(the former Gosek 00), Groves, Todd Stowell, Curran, LaTulip and Eldred. Mike Ordway came in for the first of two tire changes on the night. The second one, coming later, would probably cost him the race. Less than twenty cars restarted lap 3. Bob Bond was off like a bullet while Tim Gareau and Todd Stowell chased. Moving up in the field from the back was Mike Ordway in the Booth 61.
Things went smoothly for Bond who continued to stave off Gareau while green flew. On lap 16, Gareau dove under Bond as the duo passed by a limping Furlong. the pass would be negated quickly as yellow flew for a couple top ten runners, Jamie Moore and Jamie Letcher, who both were hooked. Howard Page narrowly avoided the incident.
Yellow flew before another lap was complete, this time for a spinning Jerry Curran.
When the race finally resumed, Bond and Gareau were now chased by Mike Ordway, Todd Stowell and Howie Page. Bond, Gareau and Ordway put on an awesome display of racing with Gareau and Ordway wheel to wheel, side by side behind Bob Bond, running strong and looking for an elusive win. Ordway moved into second finally on lap 26 and then in one more swoop got by Bond to take the lead. As the laps ticked off, Bond stuck with Ordway like glue while Gareau in turn stayed with Bond.
Havoc broke loose once again on lap 35. Gareau and Bond were into the foam, ending the three-way battle. The cause may have been partially due to a slowing Ordway. "I got into it a little hard," said Bond later,. "Ordway was slowing down and I had to get into the brakes so I spun out and lost it." Several other cars were involved including Dave Trytek and Todd Stowell, with Trytek making a trip to the pits. Tim Gareau was checked over in the ambulance after the hit. He was okay.
Yellow made a quick return on this restart as the 97 of Vern LaFave and the 99 of Otto Sitterly came together. Sitterly, who had wrecked his vehicle in warmups, was on the hook again.
Howie Page and Todd Stowell were running up on Ordway when the green finally stuck. Shannon Groves and Ohioan Jack Smith ran top five.
A lap 45 yellow -red would beat Ordway more than anything else. While Joey Payne and Vern LaFave were getting hook treatments, Ordway and Stowell came into the pits - Stowell for fuel and Ordway for another flat tire. Mike said after a charge back up to fourth place at the 50 mark, "What a night huh? Nothing's easy. Two right rear tires flat. Both of them got cut by something. There was a lot of stuff out there floating around the track. With fifteen to go, I noticed it was going down. I stayed out there for that last green flag there, but with five to go it just went right down on me. I don't think I would have made it to the end. I should have come in at fifteen to go I guess."
As the green waved for the final five, Howie Page had inherited the lead with Shannon Groves tucked in behind. Bob Bond had made a great charge back up to third. Ordway would come back up through the pack of cars, some many laps down, to get by Dave Trytek for fourth. And, that's the way they crossed under the checkered.
Shannon Groves, having another good run, said, It was definitely a really long night. There was a lot of wrecks that didn't really need to happen. In the first accident we bent a radius rod so the car was not good. It was loose and pushing and everything else. But, we're happy with second. We're all going home pretty much in one piece so that's good. I tried really hard at the end there. It was my first chance at winning and I got under Howie a few times, but the car just wouldn't stick."
Bob Bond, in his best race of the short year, indicated "We had a good race. I had to come from the back there when I got into it a little hard. Ordway was slowing down and I had to get into the brakes so I spun out and lost it. That probably cost me the race I guess but we got back up to third. We ran good. I have to thank everybody for helping, especially Doug Holmes for putting this motor together. He was really busy and didn't really have time to do mine, but he squeezed it in and got it done. I really have to thank him for that. He did a good job. I'd also like to thank Brighton Bakery, Brighton Discount Liquors, Roger's Market, Andrews Auto Parts and J&K NAPA."
J.J. Andrews, who has tried hard to become a first-time feature winner for some time now, got his wish Saturday. He started out the leader and finished right there with only two slowdowns along the way in the early going. The first yellow came for a slowing Eddie Horne, back behind the wheel of the limited #98 and the second for a foam buster by Star Matteson on lap 7. J.J. was challenged from that moment on by the 80 of Shawn Muldoon, but Muldoon just couldn't get by thanks to a finely tuned #93. "We finally got t he setup right on the Pollitt 93," said J.J. at the end of the 25-lapper.. "Got a lot of help from Mike Bond and Mike Ducaire. We put three new tires on it and a lot of hard work on the car in the garage. Shawn drove me perfect. He drove me clean. He made a great move there coming up on the last lap just that my car was right tonight and it was our night. I'd like to thank J&K Auto Parts, JR Graphics of Canada, Finger Lakes Machine who builds the awesome engines, Timco Sales, Robert J. West Excavating, and Andrews Auto Parts in Mexico, NY."
Muldoon wasn't just fighting to get by Andrews either as he spent a lot of time slamming the door on charges by Chris Proud and Bob Rundell. . Matt Wheeler didn't leave any room for errors here either. With a strong remaining field - only five cars left before the checkered - behind, J.J. ran his heart out and it showed in the tumultuous victory lane ceremony with Bob Andrews driving his #50 alongside to congratulate his brother. Proud, hounding Muldoon for second much of the way, grabbed the spot by a nose as the duo came down for the final flag. Muldoon was relegated to third with Bob Rundell and Matt Wheeler the top five.
Bill Moore of Camillus also ran flag to flag in the super stock event to win his first of the season. He was pressured by Joe Miller and Lou LeVea from the start until that duo brought out the yellow on lap 10 and both went to the rear.
Moore continued to lead as now Tony White, with one win under his belt in 2001, looked for a way around. White couldn't find one and Moore went on to his first of the year. An elated Moore said in victory lane, "Here I am shaking again. It's my first race of the year that I've won. This is a great place. I love it. I saw Tony (White) kind of sneaking in there for a second, so I said giddyup to this thing or I'm gonna lose it." Kelly Miller, Dave Bock and Erik Cuppernall finished up the top five. Saturday, July 7 the winged midgets return to Oswego with a 5 pm starting time. Gates open at 2 pm. Fireworks, originally slated for June 30, will conclude the evening. On July 14, an added treat, the Crash Moreau Thrill Show along with a regular program.