Bailey takes Hoosier Stock Duel on the Dirt
Opener – Jones becomes
358 Modified Feature Winner
SMS Machine Tools Night kicked off the 2015 Duel on the Dirt Home Track Series for the Hoosier Stock Division with Hagersville Driver Dave Bailey taking home the 20 lap Event and his second win of the season.
Port Robinson’s Tim Jones won his first Pinty’s Delicious Foods 358 Modified Feature becoming the 9th different winner while other
Lucas Oil Weekly Racing Series action had Ridgeway’s Gary Lindberg notching his fifth feature of the season in the Rick’s Delivery Sportsman Division.
Josh Sliter of Port Colborne won the Rev’s Full Throttle Powersports Modified Lite Feature by a mere 1/1000th of a second with Jason Coutu winning in the Van Raine Construction 4 Cylinder Division.
“I don’t usually like it when it’s tacky,’ said Dave Bailey in Hoosier Stock Victory Lane for the second time, “I’m better on a slick track … but here we are – this is sweet!”
Chris Crawford first to lead the 20 lap Duel on the Dirt Home Track Event for the Hoosier Stocks setting the pace until lap 3 when Brad Sheehan was left facing the wrong way in Turn 4 slowing the 23 car starting field for the first time.
On the restart, Bill Bleich became the new leader with Crawford back out front to start the next lap. Bleich stayed with Crawford with Dave Bailey trailing in third spot. Caution once again slowed the pace on lap 7.
Crawford and Bleich were side by side on the restart until a lap 8 incident also collected Kevin Knapp who fell victim to a flat tire. Bleich got the jump on the restart with Bailey following into second spot. Down the backstretch, Bailey would take control of top spot and right away opening up about half a straightaway.
Bleich had about the same margin over third place driver Peter Reid by lap 15 until Crawford regained the show position. Caution on lap 18 set up a 2 lap dash to the finish.
Bailey resumed control on the return to action holding off a hard charging Mark Fawcett who edged Bleich at the start finish line. Crawford and Ohsweken Speedway regular Dave Silverthorne rounded out the top 5.
The 2015 Duel on the Dirt Series that for 10 years has featured the Hoosier Stocks against the Pro Stocks from Brighton Speedway now includes events for the Affordable Towing Street Stocks from Ohsweken Speedway and the JC Auto Street Stocks from the Humberstone Speedway. Merrittville’s second Home Tack Event is set for Saturday August 1st when Tim Horton’s Night also features Round 2 of the David Chevrolet King of the Crates Series for the Rick’s Delivery Sportsman.
“The last couple of weeks the track has changed so much … we’d been experimenting with a lot but tonight it was back to basics,” said Tim Jones after his first 358 Modifed win.
Travis Miller was first to lead before Wayne Conn took control the first time down the back stretch in the 35 lap Feature for the Pinty’s Delicious Foods 358 Modifieds.
Tim Jones would join the battle for top spot between Conn and Miller and took top spot on lap 8. By lap 10 opened up an advantage with Mark D’Ilario now in the runner up spot.
By halfway, Jones was coming up on lap traffic holding a 20 car lead on D’Ilario who quickly began to close in on the leader. Australia’s Brett Clark slowed off the pace in Turn 4 on lap 23 slowing the pace for the first time.
Jones set the pace on the restart with D’Ilario trailing with only one lap complete before caution once again.
With Jones back out front, D’Ilario began to pressure the leader. With Mat Williamson in third – the trio broke away from the field. Jones by lap 30 had pulled away to a comfortable lead with Williamson now in the runner up spot.
Jones would hold off Williamson by a couple car lengths with D’Ilario settling for third. Pete Bicknell and Scott Wood closed out the top 5.
“The track was real heavy tonight … we fell back a bit at the start,” said Gary Lindberg in Sportsman Victory Lane for the 5th time of 2015, “somehow I snuck through the big one – we’re lucky to be here tonight!”
The big one was a multicar incident on lap 6 that left cars stranded between Turns 3 and 4 including Cody McPherson, Justin Sharp, James Friesen, Joey Mastroianni and Rob Knapp who were all at the front of the field at the time of the incident.
After a lengthy red flag to separate Mastroianni and Knapp, early race leader Jordan Cosco resumed the lead with Brad Rouse and Gary Lindberg on the move.
Cosco set the pace on the start of the 25 lap Feature for the Rick’s Delivery Sportsman Division opening up a 10 car lead by lap 5.
Along the backstretch of lap 9, Lindberg took over top spot with Rouse following suit to the runner up spot. Just before halfway a Turn 4 incident eliminated a huge lead Lindberg had opened up.
Lindberg resumed control on the restart and by lap 20 drove away to a lead of about half a straightaway.
With the white flag in the air, lap traffic wouldn’t slow the second generation driver with Brad Rouse, Paul Gaboury, Brent Begolo and Chad Chevalier closing out the top 5.
“That’s the best the top has been in a long time – I was surprised Jamie (Gilbert) gave it up on the restart,” said Rev’s Full Throttle Powersports Modified Lite Feature Winner Josh Sliter, “Jamie taught me how to run the top years ago … and his wife Jill did my tires tonight!”
After pole sitter Steven Beckett failed to fire on the original start of the 15 lap Feature, Dylan Davidson was first to lead when the green flag was thrown again.
Quickly Jamie Gilbert took control of top spot with Josh Sliter landing in the runner up spot until caution slowed the field on lap 4.
Gilbert and Sliter raced back to the green flag with Sliter taking control to start lap 5 in a see-saw battle for top spot. Gilbert found an advantage around the bottom retaking top spot holding a couple car length advantage.
Sliter would mount a challenge in the closing laps, regaining the lead to start lap 14.
The two team-mates almost crossed the finish line in a tie but the Lucas Oil Live Leaderboard had Sliter’s Niagara Falls Nissan #17 out front of Gilbert by 1/1000th of a second.
Davidson, Rob Misener and defending champion Jeff May rounded out the top 5.
“It’s cool with the transponders this year … you can see all the heavy hitters behind you,” shared Van Raine Construction 4 Cylinder Feature Winner Jason Coutu, “I’ve lost a few late in the race this year – but tonight was our night.”
What Coutu didn’t see however was that his wheel base measurements did not meet the rules.
Coutu took the lead from pole sitter Jay Moulton the first time the 25 car starting field raced down the backstretch.
On a lap 7 restart, Coutu and challenger Rob Goulding were side by side for a couple laps and before Coutu would find the advantage may have come together. Tyler Lafantaisie would soon join in with the trio three wide for top spot on lap 10.
With Coutu in control on lap 12, Kyle Haynes would make the race for second three wide. Defending Champion Leroy Buscumb would take over third on lap 13 just ahead of the final caution.
In the two lap dash, Coutu would be followed by Lafantaisie, Haynes, Buscumb and Kyle Rothwell.
Coutu was fined half his points and winnings for his infraction.
PIT NOTES 103 cars through all 5 Lucas Oil Weekly Racing Series Divisions were in attendance.
Merrittville Speedway would like to thank the race fans and race teams that wore their Retro Race T Shirts … it was cool to see them which came from all 7 decades of racing.
UPCOMING AT MERRITTVILLE SPEEDWAY The Ontario Truck Driving School presents the popular Autograph Night Saturday July 20th in support of the Canadian National Autism Foundation. On track action will feature the Rev’s Full Throttle Powersports Modoified Lites in a TUSA Modified Lite Series Event as part of the 5 Division Lucas Oil Weekly Racing Series Race Card.
The Grandstand Gates open at 5:30 for both events. Showtime is 7:00.
To reach Merrittville Speedway call 905-892-8266 or via e mail – firstname.lastname@example.org. Merrittville Speedway is located at 2371 Merrittville Highway in Thorold Ontario.
For all the news on Merrittville Speedway’s 64th Consecutive Season in 2015 – visit www.merrittvillespeedway.com. Become a fan of Merrittville Speedway on Face Book at www.facebook.com/Merrittville Speedway and follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/Merrittville
Hoosier Stock Feature (20 laps) Dave Bailey, Mark Fawcett, Billy Bleich, Chris Crawford, Dave Silverthorne, Blake Bomberry, Pete Reid, Jeremy May, Rob Murray, Kevin Knapp, Wyatt Van Wart, David Bitner, Jack Myers, Brad Sheehan, Bryce Richardson, Dale Gyokery, Dave Small, Kyle Pelrine, Jim Lampman, Trevor DeBoer, Mason Smith, Richard Champigny, Chris VanMill..
Pinty’s Delicious Foods DIRTcar 358 Modified Feature (35 laps) Tim Jones, Mat Williamson, Mark D’Ilario, Pete Bicknell, Scott Wood, Chad Brachmann, Fred Carleton, Mike Bowman, Bill Bleich, Tyler McPherson, Chris Steele, Travis Miller, Tommy Flannigan, Billy Dunn, David Flannigan Jr., Brett Clarke, Chris Bellamy, Wayne Conn, Todd Gordon, Boyd MacTavish, Jeff McGinnis, Dennis Giancola.
Rick’s Delivery DIRTcar Sportsman Feature (25 laps) Gary Lindberg, Brad Rouse, Paul Gaboury, Brent Begolo, Chad Chevalier, Jason Moore, Cody McPherson, Jordan Cosco, James Friesen, Justin Sharp, Chris Storm, Austin Wood, Robert Baker, Jay Mallory, Larry Pearce, Ryan Ferri, Gord Moreau, Charlie Lynch, Joey Mastroianni, Rob Knapp. DNS - Derick Hodge.
Rev’s Full Throttle Power Sports Modified Lite Feature (15 laps) Josh Sliter, Jamie Gilbert, Dylan Davidson, Rob Misener, Jeffrey May, RJ Pietz, Marty deMoel, Kellie Mason, Ray Sliter Jr., Chris Watson, Steven Beckett, Mike Journeaux.
Van Raine Construction 4 Cylinder Triple Crown Series Opener (15 laps) Jason Coutu, Tyler Lafantaisie, Kyle Haynes, Leroy Buscumb, Kyle Rothwell, Rob Goulding, Mike Sadusek, Alex Riley, Jeffrey Larmet, Adam Hallett, Kourtney Kocarik, Gary Hodason, Alex Pidgein, Kurtis Wiley, Jay Moulton, Tim Deboer, Jeremy Smith, Chris Ryckman, Shane Dixon, Trevor Young, Sam Iftody, Mike Giberson, Clinton Nicholls, Dennis Teeple, Eric Larmet.
MERRITTVILLE SPEEDWAY SPONSORS The 2015 64th Anniversary Lucas Oil Weekly Racing Series for Merrittville Speedway’s 5 Divisions is brought to race fans and racers by division sponsors – Pinty’s Delicious Foods, Rick’s Delivery, Rev’s Full Throttle Powersports, Hoosier Tire Canada and Van Raine Construction and Contingency Partners http://www.merrittvillespeedway.com/contingency.html in addition to many marketing partners. Visit them athttp://www.merrittvillespeedway.com/sponsors.htmand visit them when you require their products and/or services.