Susice leads entire 100 lap Big Block Modified Super DIRTcar Series 100

* Photos courtesy Kevin Miller, Nitroman Media

By Steven Petty

THOROLD, ONTARIO (August 7, 2018) ... THOROLD, ONT - With the threatening skies in the area midafternoon, the Harvey's Baron Roofing & Siding 100 turned our being a beautiful thing for Ransomville NY's Ryan Susice who won his first Big Block Modified Super DIRTcar Series event at his Saturday Night home track Monday August 6th.

Also winning for the first time was Darien, NY's Kyle Inman who won his first Bellinger Electric Inc. Lightning Series Event for the David Chevrolet Sportsman Division while Vittoria's Ryan Beagle took his first Hoosier Stock Victory.

The only repeat winner of the Civic Holiday Extravaganza was Niagara Falls' driver Anthony Kelly now a 4 time winner in the Central Fabricating & Welding 4 Cylinder Division.

Ryan Susice is not a stranger to Victory Lane at Merrittville Speedway, but this one will go down in history as his first career Super DIRTcar Series race win. Susice started on the pole and fended off all challengers to take the win. Danny Johnson, in the newly christened no. 21J Troyer chassis, was the last driver to get a shot at Susice, but he would fall short and settle for second place. Chad Brachmann, a former Series regular and local hot shoe, stayed in the top three all night, bringing the no. 3 car home on the podium in third.

Ryan Susice lead the 30-car field to the green flag, and was never scored below first place. However, that does not mean he set his racing machine on cruise control. Four drivers took shots at the lead. First, the outside pole sitter and second in points, Erick Rudolph, sent some haymakers at Susice around the high-side, but the no. 3RS managed to hold him off. Then, Rudolph fell to third and it was Chad Brachmann's turn, but he too could not take the leader down either. Mike Bowman, in the blue no. 71, passed Brachmann and gave it all he had to sweep by Susice on the outside, but he too fell short. Finally, Danny Johnson picked his way through the top of the field and started knocking on Susice's door. Susice had to work through some lapped traffic, but deftly maneuvered his way through, to hold off the charging Danny Johnson.

The smiles were wide in Ryan Susice's Victory Lane: "It's really special. This race is always one we mark on the calendar. Just to be out here and competing is awesome, but I just had a feeling tonight. I knew we had an awesome car, as long as everything worked out tonight, we made the right moves, I thought we could put it here [Victory Lane]."

The night started out great for Susice as he made it to the redraw but then he saw the number he pulled: "Luckily we drew number 1. Dave [Farney] was up on the stand giving me lots of signals and I was just trying to pace myself. I didn't want to give up too early and waste tires.

It's been a long time coming for Susice: "I was starting to think I would never get one of these. It's really special. I gotta thank Merrittville Speedway for continuing this tradition and putting the show on. Unfortunately, I gotta work tomorrow because I really want to party this one up."

Chad Brachmann did some tuning at Merrittville earlier in the week and found that the car was not right. "After our performance here on Saturday night, I went back and tore the whole car apart last night. I found a bunch of things wrong and it proved that little things make a big difference. Hats off to Ryan, that's great. Track position was everything and he did a great job doing what he had to do. "

Brad Rouse and "Oh Henry" James Henry brought the 24-car starting field to the green flag for the 30-lap feature event with Rouse showing the way early. Rouse used his track knowledge well in the early stages as he opened-up the lead over Henry, James Michael Friesen, Rob Knapp, and Dave Conant.

The first yellow flag of the event would come out on lap eight as Rob Knapp tagged the front stretch wall. On the restart, sixth-place starter Kyle Inman went three-wide with Cody McPherson and Friesen to move into second and would then quickly reel in race leader Rouse. By lap 10, Inman would take the lead away by using the middle groove of the racetrack. Dave DiPietro spun in turn four to bring out the second and last caution of the night on lap 18. The final 12-laps saw Inman hold off numerous challenges from Friesen to score the victory at the Thorold, Ontario oval.

"I found something in the middle of the track off turn two and it stuck", said Inman in victory lane. "I ended up following Kyle in the middle and learned a few things but we were close tonight", stated runner-up finisher Friesen. "We had a good run tonight. Didn't know where Kyle came from off the one restart but overall it was a good night", commented third-place finisher Cody McPherson.

42-cars signed in pitside despite threatening weather around the Niagara Region.

The Samco Designs Low Cash Dash was won by Scott George over Cameron Tuttle in an exciting six-lap battle.

Contingency award winners were Pails of VP Race Fuels went to James Michael Friesen and Jim Harbison. The Lucas Oil/Leslie Motorsports package went to Cody McPherson. The certificate from Bicknell Race Products went to Darrell Farraway. Henry's Exhaust certificate went to Zach George and the Fab Shop 54 certificate went to Boyd MacTavish. The Wild Card draw went to Jordan Cosco.

BEI Lightning Series officials would like to thank contingency sponsors Bicknell Racing Products, Rick's Delivery, Leslie Motorsports, Henry's Exhaust, Fab Shop 54, Samco Designs LLC, Smith's Speed and Pro Shop, Innovative Auto Repair, and Dialed Designs.

Olivier Larocque led the field to the green flag to start the 15 lap Feature for the Central Fabricating & Welding 4 Cylinder Division with Alex Riley taking over top spot the first time into Turn 1.

Just as the field completed the first lap caution slowed the pace after Austyn Werstroh fell off the pace and coasted into the infield in Turn 1.

Riley resumed control on the restart with Anthony Kelly now in the runner up spot. The two front runners would soon drive away from the pack to lap 5. By halfway the gap had stretched to almost a full straightaway.

Kelly would begin to close in on Riley and took over top spot crossing the start finish line to start lap 11.

At the finish, Kelly and Riley were followed by Cole Hardy, Olivier Larocque and Kyle Rothwell.

"It's just great racing with Alex," said Anthony Kelly after winning for the 4th time of the season, "we raced each other clean and hard. I can't thank my Dad enough for all he does - this is our 5th engine of the season."

"My first win here ... I'm feeling so good," said Ryan Beagle, an Ohsweken Speedway regular from Vittoria, " I came here as a fan ... to win here with all the history - it's really special."

Jason Fontaine was first to lead the 20 lap Hoosier Stock Feature before Dave Bailey took control in Turn 2 of lap 2. Soon Fontaine would face a challenge from Brighton Speedway regular Justin Ramsey. The battle for the runner up spot allowed Bailey to open up a comfortable lead not to mention the three and four wide racing through the field.

Bailey would be slowed on lap 9 for caution. Wild action behind him had Beagle landing in third before taking over second just before a second caution on lap 12.

Bailey was back out front on the restart with Beagle edging ahead down the backstretch. On the move in the closing laps was Rob Murray who would take second from Bailey on lap 13.

Taking the white flag, Murray was about a car length behind Beagle - but couldn't get any closer.

Beagle and Murray were followed by Brad Sheehan who made a late race charge to get by Bailey. Jason Fontaine closed out the Top 5.

PIT NOTES On behalf of the Big Block Modified and Sportsman Race Teams - Thank You to all those that supported the 2018 Lap Sponsorship Programs.

Growing up as a Race Fan ... Regional Chair Alan Caslin was joined by Harvey's of Port Colborne's Terry St. Amand and Baron Roofing & Siding's Terry Keagan in giving the Gentleman Start your Engines command and up on the flagstand.

UPCOMING at Merrittville Speedway

Saturday August 11th, the Niagara Employment Help Centre will present a Bobcat of Hamilton Weekly Racing Series Event and the annual Kid's Box Car Races.

Grandstands open at 5:30 with Show Time at 7 PM.

Action quickly returns Sunday August 12th with the Seaway Mall presenting Motorized Mayhem that features the 100 lap Vansickle Pet Valu & Groomingdale'sEnduro by Niagara College ... the 2nd Annual Country 89 vs Giant FM Bus Race for Charity and a performance by Monster Truck Train Wreck.

Grandstands will open at 11 with Show Time at 1 PM.

For further information - call 905-892-8266 or visit

For all the news on Merrittville Speedway's 2018 Season, Race fans and Race teams alike can follow Merrittville on Face Book and Twitter

MERRITTVILLE SPEEDWAY SPONSORS The 2018 67th Anniversary Bobcat of Hamilton Weekly Racing Series for Merrittville Speedway's 5 Divisions is brought to race fans and racers by division sponsors - S&W Service Centre, David Chevrolet, Hoosier Tire Canada, Vansickle Pet Valu & Groomingdale's, Central Fabricating and Welding and Dave's Auto & Speed Centre in addition to many marketing partners Visit them at and visit them when you require their products and/or services.

Celebrating more than15 years of serving the Hamilton, Halton and Niagara Regions, Bobcat of Hamilton is a leading provider of compact equipment for a wide variety of markets - striving to empower customers to do their jobs more efficiently and effectively.

To learn more about more about the Bobcat of Hamilton Advantage click on

Bobcat of Hamilton ... One Tough Animal!

Harvey's of Port Colborne Baron Roofing & Siding Night - Monday August 6 2018

Bobcat of Hamilton Weekly Racing Series Complete Results

  • 100 lap Big Block Modified Super DIRTcar Series 1. 3rs - Ryan Susice; 2. 21J - Danny Johnson; 3. 3 - Chad Brachmann; 4. 6M - Mat Williamson; 5. 25RS - Erick Rudolph; 6. 71 - Mike Bowman; 7. 6H - Max McLaughlin; 8. 44F - Stewart Friesen; 9. 98H - Jimmy Phelps; 10. 9S - Matt Sheppard; 11. 42 - Pete Bicknell; 12. 28 - Todd Gordon; 13. 96 - Fred Carleton; 14. 20 - Brett Hearn; 15. 63 - Adam Roberts; 16. 37S - Tommy Flannigan; 17. 21A - Peter Britten; 18. 15J - Tim Jones; 19. 38 - Scott Wood; 20. 8 - Rich Scagliotta; 21. 7F - Matt Farnham; 22. 08 - Mark D'Ilario; 23. 26 - Rick Richner; 24. 777 - Tyler McPherson; 25. 2X - Tom Neale; 26. 48T - Dave Rauscher; 27. 28ZT - Gary Lindberg; 28. 15 - Adam Leslie; 29. 11S - Steve Lewis Jr.; 30. 27 - Jim Zimmerman Jr.
  • BEI Lightning Series for the David Chevrolet Sportsman Division (30 laps) Kyle Inman, James Michael Friesen, Cody McPherson, Brad Rouse, Greg Panunte, James Henry, Chad Chevalier, Brett Senek, Paul Gaboury, Brent Begolo, Robbie Johnston, Adam Leslie, Jay Mallory, Dave Conant Justin Sharp, Dave DiPietro, Trevor Wright, Garrison Krentz, Derrick Borkenhagen, Jim Harbison, Boyd MacTavish, Zach George, Darrell Farraway, Rob Knapp
  • Low Cash Dash: Scott George, Cameron Tuttle, Chris Storm, Ryan Ferri, Chris Bellamy
  • Qualifying Heat Winners: Dave Conant, James Michael Friesen, James Henry, Cody McPherson, Brad Rouse
  • Last Chance Qualifier Winners: Trevor Wright, Darrell Farraway
  • Failed to Qualify: Jordan Cosco, Dylan Davidson, Cameron Tuttle, Scott George, Chris Storm, Ryan Ferri, Chris Bellamy, Tyler Puchalski, Noah Walker, AJ Custodi, Sean Dominey, Luke Carleton, Mike Denning, Vince Fargnoli, Josh Wilcox, Rob Sauder, Zach Sam, Brandon Gruhl
  • Central Fabricating & Welding 4 Cylinder Division Feature (15 laps) - Anthony Kelly, Alex Riley. Cole Hardy, Olivier Larocque, Kyle Rothwell, Jay Moulton, Sam Iftody, Tony Kelly, Carrie Teeple, Clinton Nicholls, Vincent Pagnotta, Jeremy Smith, 4, Bobby Tolten, Chris Laskey, Mike Giberson, Daniel McKay, Jason Tolton, Austyn Werstroh.
  • Hoosier Stock Division Feature (20 laps) - Ryan Beagle, Rob Murray, Brad Sheehan, Dave Bailey, Jason Fontaine, Kyle Pelrine, Blake Bomberry Jr., Justin Ramsey, Steve Shaw, Tanner Podwinski, Aaron Rewutzsky, Jack Myers, Bill Podwinski, Go Fast Teeple, Robin Mortensen, Jeff Roelfe, Zach Bleich, Jens Mortensen.

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