VERNON, NY- A beautiful Sunday evening greeted the fans to an exciting night of racing, as Mitch Gibbs grabbed the win on Triple B Welding night. It was Gibbs first win of the 2003 season at the fast hal-mile. Jamie Christian, Jason Rood, Chuck ...
VERNON, NY- A beautiful Sunday evening greeted the fans to an exciting night of racing, as Mitch Gibbs grabbed the win on Triple B Welding night. It was Gibbs first win of the 2003 season at the fast hal-mile. Jamie Christian, Jason Rood, Chuck Cushman, and Doug Norrie were also victorious.
In DIRT 358-Modified feature action, Jim Rothwell took the early lead over Pete Taylor on the start, as Rothwell was looking for his second victory of the season. The first caution of the night flew on lap 7, when Paul Jensen and Gus Schmidt made contact, with Schmidt receiving heavy front-end damage. Schmidt was able to continue later in the event, many laps down.
When the green flag flew again, Rothwell again jumped into the lead with Taylor, Chuck Hebing, Mark Flach, and Kevin Crave in tow. At this point, Mitch Gibbs was coming to the front from thirteenth starting position, cracking the top five on lap 9. The caution flew again on lap 11 for the spun cars of Loren Browe and Aaron Jacobs, eliminating Rothwell's lead.
Gibbs used the restart to his advantage, going from fourth to second at the drop of the green. Gibbs immediately went to work on the front running Rothwell, and on lap 14, Gibbs held a slight lead crossing the start/finish line. The veteran Rothwell was not going to give up the lead easily, as he went by Gibbs on the outside to regain the lead on lap 15. The final caution of the evening flew at the halfway point, with Rothwell holding the point, with Gibbs in second, Planck from seventeenth to third, Taylor in fourth, and John Ramsey in fifth. Ramsey dropped out under caution with front-end damage.
Rothwell and Gibbs put on side by side battle for the next 8 laps with Planck chasing the leaders in third. Planck was trying to drive by both Gibbs and Rothwell on lap 20, when he jumped the cushion and lost ground to the front running duo. With Planck out of the picture, Gibbs was able to devote all attention on the fast running Rothwell. Gibbs finally took the lead at the completion of lap 23, and was able to lead the remainder of the thrilling event. Planck used lapped traffic to get by Rothwell to finish in second, with Rothwell third, a heavily smoking JJ Michaels in fourth, and Todd Burley coming home in fifth.
Steve Anderson and Tim Mayne brought the Sportsman starting field down to the green with Mayne grabbing the advantage. The caution flew at the completion for a pileup in turn four involved half of the starting field. Only the car of Bill Trexler Jr. was too damaged to continue. On the restart, Jamie Christian took the lead and dominated the rest of the event, which went caution free until the end. Christian took the special $500 payday, with Mayne following in second, Jim Roberts, Steve Anderson, and Jeremy Vunk filled out the top five.
Tom Denton jumped out to the early lead from his outside front row starting position over pole sitter Jason Rood in the Pro Stock main event, until he spun on lap 4 handing the lead over to Rood. Defending Pro Stock track champion Rood ended Jerry Holmes' stranglehold on victory lane by leading the rest of the way to claim his first win of the season at the speedway. Joe Palmer crossed in second with Jim Normoyle in third, and Mark Effner claimed a hard fought fourth over Buddy Hencke.
Chuck Cushman used his pole starting spot to his advantage in the Pure Stock feature event as he took the lead at the start and was never challenged as he led the entire caution free race. Art Newman came home in second, with Waylan Wilczek in third, Herm Staats in fourth, and Jim Thomas in fifth.
Doug Norrie continued his success in the Central New York Mini Sprint main, taking the lead at the start of the event and was never seriously challenged on his way to victory.
NOTES- 27 DIRT 358-Modifieds, 12 DIRT Sportsman, 18 DIRT Pro Stocks, 15 Pure Stocks, and 25 CNY Mini Sprints were entered for the night's competition. The Sportsman competed in a non-point race due to the Sunoco Race Fuels Super DIRT Series Sportsman event being run at Cayuga County Fairgrounds. The Pure Stocks feature event was also a non-point race because of the Battle of the Street Stock event being held at Freedom Raceway. Heat races for the 358-Modifieds were won by RC Faigle, Chuck Hebing, and Pete Taylor, and Dave Rauscher took the consolation event. Steve Andereson and Tim Mayne took the Sportsman heats, Jason Rood and Tom Denton won the Pro Stock heats, and Chuck Cushman and Waylan Wilczek won the Pure Stock qualifying heats. In CNY Mini Sprint qualifying action, the heats were won by Doug Norrie, Lance Odell, and Jeremy Quick. Four-time Utica-Rome Speedway track champion Paul Jensen returned to competition for the first time in several years, driving the second Roger Heroux entry formerly driven by Mitch Gibbs at Five Mile Point Speedway.
Tonight's action was the beginning of a busy week at the "Action Track of the East", with this Thursday, June 19th, when the Turning Stone Casino Super DIRT Series for the 358-Modifieds (100 laps) make a stop at the speedway. All the DIRT stars will come trying steal the win from the Utica-Rome Speedway regulars. FX Caprara Car Companies will present the racing action this Thursday that will also see the DIRT Pro Stocks and Four Cylinder Stocks in action. Gates will open at 4 p.m., with time trials at 6:30 p.m., and racing beginning at 7 p.m. The speedway will come to life again on Sunday, June 22nd, evening when North Norwich Motors and Rothwell's Used Auto Sales presents Student Night with a regular show of DIRT 358-Modifieds, DIRT Sportsman, DIRT Pro Stocks, and Pure Stocks plus the popular one on one spectator races. Any student with a passing report card will be admitted to the races for free. Gates will open at 4 p.m. and racing will begin at 6 p.m.
TRIPLE B WELDING NIGHT
DIRT 358-MODIFIED FEATURE FINISH (30 LAPS)- MITCH GIBBS, Dale Planck, Jim Rothwell, JJ Michaels, Todd Burley, Matt Sheppard, Pete Taylor, Paul Kinney, Chuck Hebing, Dave Rauscher, Jeff Kotary, Ted Lamb, Ray Zemken, Paul Jensen, Kevin Crave, Mark Flach, RC Faigle, Kory Gurney, Loren Browe, Joel Thomas, Aaron Jacobs, Willy Decker, Gus Schmidt, John Ramsey, and Mark Tily. DNQ- Ted Teal and Tony Ross.
DIRT SPORTSMAN FEATURE FINISH (15 LAPS)- JAMIE CHRISTIAN, Tim Mayne, Jim Roberts, Steve Anderson, Jeremy Vunk, Steve Way, John Johnson, Tim Nye, Josh Flint, Butch Reiter, Darren Keyser, and Bill Trexler Jr.
DIRT PRO STOCK FEATURE FINISH (15 LAPS)- JASON ROOD, Joe Palmer, Jim Normoyle, Mark Effner, Buddy Hencke, Bret Belden, Bill Knapp, George Kiskiel, Chad Ray, Jerry Holmes, AJ Digsby, Eric Vanderhoof, Brian Belden, Joel Herne, Ed Ostrander, John Santolin, Paul Rogers, Tom Denton, and Mark Lighthall.
PURE STOCK FEATURE FINISH (15 LAPS)- CHUCK CUSHMAN, Art Newman, Waylan Wilczek, Herm Staats, Jim Thomas, George Schulze, Phil Norman, Rick Trexler, Dave Janczuk, Ted Crawford, Dana Camenga, Frank Hyatt, Rob Seavy, and Rick Condes. DNS-Ray Fancher
CNY MINI SPRINT TOP FIVE(15 LAPS)- DOUG NORRIE, Bryan Howland, Cory Sparks, Jeremy Quick, and Jerred Fink.