By Mike Leone
July 12, 2012
(Hartford, OH)…After just three days off from another successful Lou Blaney Memorial, Sharon Speedway returns to action this Saturday night (July 14) with another special event as the Buckeye Outlaw Sprint Series (BOSS) make its first ever appearance featuring the traditional non-winged Sprint Cars.
Also on the card will be the Summit Racing Equipment E-Mods, Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars, Summit Racing Equipment Econo Mods, HTMA/Precise Racing Products Econo Mods and the Deforest Used Parts Mini Stocks. The event will be presented by Bob & Chuck Eddy. Race time is 7 p.m.
While Brandon Matus captured the All Star Sprint Ohio Speedweek victory on June 26 and earlier this week Brad Sweet picked up the Lou Blaney Memorial for the “410” Sprints, Saturday’s event will be of a different variety. The wings will be coming off as the “traditional” Sprints will run for the first time since 2000 when Dave Darland picked up the victory on the old half-mile.
Saturday’s event will be sanctioned by BOSS, a second year organization led by racer Aaron Fry, featuring non-wing “410” Sprint Car races throughout Ohio, western Pennsylvania, and eastern Indiana. BOSS has already completed seven events this season with seven different winners as a total of 97 different drivers have competed to date!
Jamie Miller picked up the opener at Fremont. Mike Burkin and local racer Brandon Spithaler won the Wayne County and Mercer Raceway Park doubleheader weekend respectively. Landon Simon was the Southern Ohio victor with Justin Grand victorious at Lawrenceburg. West Virginia racer Andre Layfield scored an upset victory at Pittsburgh in just his third ever non-wing start, and Thomas Meseraull won the most recent event at Waynesfield.
Ironically the top four racers in points have yet to win! Dustin Smith leads Tony Beaber by just 12 points with Kirk Jeffries, Aaron Middaugh, and Simon completing the top five. Western Pa. racer Brandon Spithaler is currently seventh. Spithaler began his career at Sharon as a young teenager capturing wins in the Green Flag Limited Sprint division. In recent years, Spithaler has won winged “410” races at Mercer and Lernerville, while dabbling without the wing.
Look for many local racers to take off the wing and compete with BOSS against the invaders as Mercer Raceway Park has dropped the Sprint Cars from their program on Saturday.
“I’m really looking forward to seeing the non-wing Sprints Saturday,” stated third year General Manager Dave Willoughby. “It’s been 12 years since they’ve been to Sharon and will be the first time ever on the new configuration. There’s been a lot of interest from both the racers and fans so hopefully the weather will cooperate so we can get this event in.’
Joel Watson was the last E-Mod winner on June 30 and that victory propelled the Conneaut, Ohio racer into a six-point lead over Jack Young. One-time winner, Joe Gabrielson, is 38 points back and is up three on early point leader Shawn Shingledecker, who has yet to win this season.
Tim Burns extended his point lead to 25 over four-time champion Steve D’Apolito on July 1. The Greenville racer was trying to fend off D’Apolito when D’Apolito braked for an accident and was rear-ended by third place runner and third place point man Rod Laskey. Greenville’s Burns is in hot pursuit of his first championship.
It’s been an up and down season for Brand Blackshear. The Brookfield, Ohio racer has won five features along with a pair of runner-ups, but four DNF’s have allowed his fellow competitors to remain within striking distance in the Econo Mods. Blackshear has a 32-point lead on one-time winner Brian Hathaway, while another first career winner in Jeremy Double is just three more points back.
Jim Haefke, Jr. has certainly been the speedway’s most improved racer winning the first five races of his career this season in the Mini Stocks. The Austintown, Ohio racer leads last year’s champion and dominator Bill Fuchs by just seven points. Fuchs has only three wins this season.
Pits open at 4 p.m. on Saturday with grandstands at 5. Race time is 7 p.m. Adult admission is $13 and pit passes are $30. Kids 13 and under are always free.
The Barris Supply FASTRAK Late Models and Governor Insurance DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds will have the night off, but will return on Saturday, July 21. FASTRAK will be featured in a Northeast Touring Series event for $2,000 to-win plus a GM 604 engine will be given away valued at over $5,000 thanks to Sweeney Chevrolet.
Sharon Speedway is owned by the Blaney, Weller, and Kirila Families and is a 3/8-mile dirt track located on Custer-Orangeville Road in Hartford, Ohio near the intersection of Routes 7 & 305. For more information, check out the website at www.sharonspeedway.com or call 330-772-5481. Become a fan of Sharon Speedway on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sharonspeedway and follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/sharonspdwy.