Kittanning Closure: Schaeffer and Egley Lock in Division Titles! Bolland checkers number five, Barbara and Ellenberger find Victory Lane
Sarver, PA (August 23, 2008) With the Friedman’s Freshmarkets UMP DIRTcar Super Late Models (Alex Ferree) and Ferrante Motor Cars DIRTcar Modifieds (Brian Swartzlander) Track Championships already decided, all attention was focused on the Commercial Truck & Trailer Sprints and Advance Auto Parts UMP DIRTcar Street Stocks with six drivers (three in each division) still in contention for that elusive Lernerville Speedway Budweiser Track Championship. When the dust settled and the champagne bubbled, it was Kevin Schaeffer and Bob Egley (a pair of Kittanning drivers), celebrating a Championship moment with their families and crews in Sheetz Victory Lane!
A little course in Lernerville History, Brian Swartzlander surpasses the legendary Blackie Watt with the most career Ferrante Motor Cars DIRTcar Modified Track Championships with six, Watt has five to his credit. Along the same lines, Kevin Schaeffer joins a distinguished list of Lou Blaney and Ed Lynch Jr. as the only three drivers to win three consecutive Commercial Truck & Trailer Sprint Car Track Championships. Blaney actually won four consecutive championships, a mark Schaeffer will try to match next season.
But prior to the celebrations and rewriting of the Lernerville Record Books, the drivers that make Fab Four Racing the best weekly show in the country, thrilled the crowd once again from the heats the whole through to the features on Armstrong One Wire Night. Kevin Bolland won his fifth Ferrante Motor Cars DIRTcar Modified feature, Keith Barbara scored an emotional win on a long overdue return to Sheetz Victory Lane in the Friedman’s Freshmarkets UMP DIRTcar Super Late Models, Brian Ellenberger picked up his first Lernerville feature win of 2008 in the Commercial Truck & Trailer Sprints, and Bob Egley iced his own Track Championship cake by taking the checkers in the Advance Auto Parts UMP DIRTcar Street Stocks feature. In all, 96 cars took the track, (each division with 22+ competitors), on the final night of Fab Four Racing and Budweiser Points of the 40th Anniversary Season of Don Martin’s Lernerville Speedway.
With Brian Swartzlander locked in as the 2008 Ferrante Motor Cars DIRTcar Modifieds Track Champion and himself being locked into second, Kevin Bolland had little to race for but a feature win. Bolland (#777 of New Brighton) rolled off the grid eighth, but a lap one melee in turn four, (that collected front runners Jeremiah Shingledecker (#37MD of Polk) and last week’s feature winner Del Rougeux Jr. (#20D of Frenchville)), allowed Bolland to advance to fourth before a lap was completed. Tom Winkle (#28 of Mars) started on the pole and appeared to be on his way to Sheetz Victory Lane, but a long green flag run saddled the leaders in heavy lapped traffic. In that situation, most drivers prefer to be in second and that’s exactly where Bolland was running. On lap 19, Bolland dove under Winkle entering turn three and motored on to his fifth win of the season, the 42nd of his impressive career resume at Lernerville Speedway.
Tom Winkle matched his best finish of the season with a second place run. “Double Duty” Dave Murdick (#61 of Slippery Rock) wowed his longtime sponsor Armstrong One Wire with an impressive third place run, his first of two top five runs on Armstrong One Wire Night at the speedway. Two-time defending Track Champion Brian Swartzlander (#83 of Leechburg) raced home fourth, followed by Phil Evans Jr. (#38 of Greensburg). Evans recorded his first top five of the season. J.R. McGinley (#66 of Fairmount City) ran a strong race, spending most of the 25-lapper in the top five before jumping the cushion on the next to last lap. He would recover to cross the stripe sixth followed by Mark Flick, Erik Martin, Carl Murdick and Brian Sadler. Heat race victors were Kevin Bolland and Brian Swartzlander.
Nobody can doubt Keith Barbara’s talent to wheel a Super Late Model around a race track, but nor can they deny that Barbara has had some terrible luck, especially with motors, over the past two seasons. Last night, however the Domhoff powerplant was flawless as Barbara passed six-time Track Champion Lynn Geisler and Two-time defending Track Champion Alex Ferree in the same lap to pick up his first Lernerville feature win in over five years! The win was an emotional one for Barbara as sponsor and friend Jason Shank mourns the loss of his sister Louise. Barbara’s first congratulations came from Shank via cell phone in Sheetz Victory Lane and Barbara dedicated the win to Jason and the Shank Family.
As the field came to the green, the table was set for Alex Ferree (who had the 2008 Track Championship clinched last week) to win the final feature of his second Championship season from the inside pole. Ferree (#4 of Saxonburg), led the first seven circuits, but saw the famed #1 Cochran Late Model of Lynn Geisler zoom past him on the high side of turn two on the lap eight restart. Three laps later, Barbara (#17 of South Park) zipped past Ferree on the low side of turn two for second. On the same lap, Barbara slid underneath leader Lynn Geisler in turns three & four to take control of the race on lap 11. A caution then slowed the race, but more than half of the field crossed the stripe and the lap counted. A handful of restarts tested the mettle of Barbara, but each time he rocketed off of turn four to a commanding lead as he cruised into Sheetz Victory Lane.
With Barbara at the helm, Ferree and Geisler (#1C of Cranberry Twp.) continued to duke it out for second, exchanging the positions several times as the laps ticked off. At the checkered flag, it was Ferree in second followed by Geisler in third. Two-time feature winner John Mollick (#4J of Toronto, OH) had a roller coaster night as he advanced from eighth to third early in the race, was involved in a mid-race caution, then came from the tail of the field to finish fourth. Dave Murdick (#1J of Slippery Rock) rounded out the top five, despite starting dead last on a loaded 23-car field. Early front runner Mike Blose (#5 of New Bethlehem) rolled into the pits on lap 12 with heavy smoke while running in the top five. Gregg Satterlee (#22 of Rochester Mills) continued his run of bad luck by dropping out of the race on lap two after contact with John Garvin (#J4 of Sarver). The following drivers endured and avoided the attrition of the 25-lap feature and rounded out the top ten; Todd Bachman, Kenny Schaltenbrand, Brian Swartzlander, Jim Kurpakas and Denton Boyer. Heat races were claimed by Brian Swartzlander, Mike Blose and Keith Barbara.
The Commercial Truck & Trailer Sprints rolled off with Championship long shots Bob Felmlee (#6F of Seneca) and Rod George (#4 of Kittanning) on the front row. Conventional wisdom would suggest that the rest of the field would be racing for third. All Star regular Brian Ellenberger, (fresh off his first career All Star win last Saturday Night at Riverside International Raceway in West Memphis, Arkansas), had other ideas. Ellenberger (#20E of Butler) picked up his only feature win of 2007 on the final night of Fab Four Racing/Budweiser Points and matched that feat last night by besting both George and Felmlee. Ellenberger wasted little time putting his stamp on the race as he passed George for second on lap two then blasted past Felmlee exiting turn two on lap four. Lapped traffic, then a few mid-race restarts, did not faze the veteran driver and he checked out virtually unchallenged to Sheetz Victory Lane.
Felmlee, back from a scary fire two weeks ago, ran a strong race to finish second, but could never get a run on Ellenberger. Despite Ellenberger’s dominance and Felmlee’s quick return to action, the best story of the feature was the run turned in by Andy McKisson (#0 of Strattanville). For each of the past three weeks, McKisson has turned in top five finishes, improving by one position each week. Last night, he only matched his best finish of the season by finishing third, but he did so in a most impressive fashion. After starting 12th, McKisson worked his way through the field and, at times, heavy lapped traffic and by lap 16, McKisson was in the top five (passing Rod George, Scott Priester and Kevin Schaeffer in the process). On lap 17, McKisson slid under Todd Bauer for fourth and started to pursue all time wins leader Ed Lynch Jr. for third. After a few failed attempts to slide under Lynch exiting turn four, McKisson took the position from Lynch at the flag stand completing lap 23 and held off the local legend for an incredible third place run. Lynch (#2L of Apollo) came home fourth, while Scott Bonnell (#3B of Fairview) rounded out the CTT Top Five. Kevin Schaeffer (#9 of Kittanning) secured his third straight championship with a solid sixth place finish. The rest of the top ten shook out with Rod George, Todd Bauer, Carl Bowser and Brent Matus. Charlie Holben (of Cabot) had another solid run going in the Dionise #15, but looped it in turns three & four on lap nine while running in the top five. He would recover to record a disappointing 15th place finish after running so well early in the race. Heat races went to Bob Felmlee, Rod George and Scott Bonnell.
The night’s real drama came in the last race of the season from the most competitive division of Fab Four Racing, the Advance Auto Parts UMP DIRTcar Street Stocks. Entering the 20-lap event, Bob Egley, Wayne Carbo and Jason Fosnaught were all in contention for the 2008 Track Championship. Fosnaught maximized his point production during heat race action by winning heat number two. Carbo, on the other hand, put himself behind the eight ball by brushing the wall during the same heat, resulting in a ninth place finish. Eventual champion Bob Egley took care of business, however, by finishing second in the first heat race. As the feature rolled onto the track, Egley, (starting on the outside pole), had a comfortable, but not insurmountable points lead. But instead of leaving the points chase up to chance, Egley went out and won the feature and at the same time, his first career Advance Auto Parts UMP DIRTcar Street Stock Track Championship.
Despite the double win, the going was not easy for the veteran driver known as “Batman” (for his years behind the wheel of the immensely popular “Bat Bus”). Pat Hanley, (#380 of Monroeville), started on the pole and led the first lap. Egley (#30 of Kittanning) took the front spot on lap two, but relinquished the lead to Hanley after a mid-race restart. Bob Lipinski, (winner of each of the last two features), charged through the field from 12th again to take the lead on lap 14, but a caution slowed the field with just three laps to go. The lap 18 restart saw three lead changes between three different cars. Jim Fosnaught (#20J of Bairdford) took the lead at the green flag with a big run from the outside of the front row. Lipinski (#55 of Pittsburgh) retook the lead on the back straightaway, only to see the purple #30 of Egley zip past him at the flag stand. Egley led the rest of the way to secure his division-leading fourth feature win of the season and his first career Lernerville Track Championship. Coming to the checkered flag, heavy contact between Lipinski and Jim Fosnaught in turns three & four knocked both cars out of the race, resulting in 13th and 14th place finishes respectively. Egley came to the flag stand with both the checkered and yellow flag waving.
So what became of Wayne Carbo and Jason Fosnaught? Carbo (#54 of Saxonburg) charged from his 18th place starting position to finish fourth, but was never in a position to race for the lead or championship. Fosnaught challenged Egley in the opening laps, and even temporarily took the lead on lap six exiting turn two, but a caution put him back in second. On the restart, Fosnaught stood on the gas, but the car did not go because the J19 busted an axle bringing an early end to Jason’s championship run.
Pat Hanley raced home second to cement his place in the top five of the Budweiser Point Standings. Ryan Moyer (#13X of Harmony) recorded his best finish of the season by crossing the stripe third. Carbo came under the checkers fourth, followed by Paul Schreckengost (#3S of Creighton). Eric Piotrowski (#7 of Cranberry Twp.), like Moyer, saved his best for last by recording his best finish of the season in sixth. Classy Freddy Bratchie finished seventh in Wayne Carbo’s “old car”. Kevin Haas, Terry Young and Randy Hanovick rounded out the top ten. Heat races were claimed by Paul Schreckengost and Jason Fosnaught.
Despite the end of the Fab Four Racing and Budweiser Point seasons, each of the Fab Four divisions will be back in action before the 40th Anniversary Season schedule. Next Friday August 29, the CTT Sprints and Friedman’s Lates are scheduled to compete against the All Star Circuit of Champions Sprints and MACS Late Model Series in the Cleveland Brothers CAT Jim Shank Memorial. The Advance Auto Stocks will also be in action that night in a non-points warm-up for the $2000-to-win Advance Auto Parts Autumn-Motive Fest Street Stock Pandemonium. The Ferrante Mods will be back in action on Friday September 12 as the Advance Auto Parts Super DIRT Series returns to the Action Track after a two year hiatus for the North-South 100. The 100-lap Modified showcase will also be a BRP point race. The following day, Saturday September 13 is the $2000-to-win “Open Rule” Street Stock Pandemonium and another 100-lap, $1000-to-win Enduro. For more details or ticket prices, log on to www.Lernerville.com and click on the “2008 Schedule” link.
Commercial Truck & Trailer Sprints Feature (25 Laps)
- (20E) Brian Ellenberger, Butler
- (6F) Bob Felmlee, Seneca
- (0) Andy McKisson, Strattanville
- (2L) Ed Lynch Jr., Apollo
- (3B) Scott Bonnell, Fairview
- (9) Kevin Schaeffer, Kittanning
- (4) Rod George, Kittanning
- (45) Todd Bauer, Clarion
- (10) Carl Bowser, Sarver
- (33) Brent Matus, Wampum
- (11) Scott Priester, Rimersburg
- (8K) Gary Rankin, Renfrew
- (23) Steven Lines, AUS
- (D4) Danny Holtgraver, Pittsburgh
- (15) Charlie Holben, Cabot
- (08) Dan Kuriger, Freedom
- (98) Dan Shetler, Johnstown
- (56) Ralph Spithaler, Evans City
- (29E) Brent Ellenberger, Butler
- (4K) Bill Kiley, Cabot
- (24S) Brian Steinman, Lucinda
- (96) Lindsay Enscoe, Petrolia
- (4C) Paul Kish, Poland, OH
- (X) Cory Good, Smicksburg
Heat Race Winners: Bob Felmlee, Rod George, Scott Bonnell
B-Main Winner: Dan Shetler
Friedman’s Freshmarkets UMP DIRTcar Super Late Models Feature (25 Laps)
- (17) Keith Barbara, South Park
- (4) Alex Ferree, Saxonburg
- (1C) Lynn Geisler, Cranberry Twp.
- (4J) John Mollick, Toronto, OH
- (1J) Dave Murdick, Slippery Rock
- (66) Todd Bachman, Natrona Heights
- (29) Ken Schaltenbrand, Sarver
- (111D) Brian Swartzlander, Leechburg
- (72B) Jim Kurpakas, Leechburg
- (56X) Denton Boyer, Punxsy
- (23) Tony Burke, Sarver
- (3) Dan Swartzlander, Freeport
- (6A) Chuck Kennedy, Mars
- (15K) Ray Kroll Sr., Renfrew
- (5) Mike Blose, New Bethlehem
- (38R) Nick Reges, Butler
- (21) Matt Lux, Franklin
- (1L) Dane Laraway, Irwin
- (56) Russell King, Bristolville, OH
- (10) Gary Lyle, Hyde Park
- (J4) John Garvin, Sarver
- (25B) Mark Booth, Irwin
- (22) Gregg Satterlee, Rochester Mills
Heat Race Winners: Brian Swartzlander, Mike Blose, Keith Barbara
Ferrante Motor Cars DIRTcar Modified Feature (25 Laps)
- (777) Kevin Bolland, New Brighton
- (28) Tom Winkle, Mars
- (61) Dave Murdick, Slippery Rock
- (83) Brian Swartzlander, Leechburg
- (38) Phil Evans Jr., Greensburg
- (66) J.R. McGinley, Fairmount City
- (2) Mark Flick, Apollo
- (29E) Erik Martin, Butler
- (6) Carl Murdick, Butler
- (5) Brian Sadler, McKean
- (74) Kevin Green, New Castle
- (45) Steve Feder, Butler
- (71) Randy Chronister, Slippery Rock
- (29) Garrett Krummert, New Castle
- (17H) Kevin Hoffman, Franklin
- (96) Mike Turner, Butler
- (37MD) Jeremiah Shingledecker, Polk
- (20D) Del Rougeux Jr., Frenchville
- (75) Jeff Miller, Sarver
- (72) Mike Miller, Chicora
Heat Race Winners: Kevin Bolland, Brian Swartzlander
Advance Auto Parts UMP DIRTcar Street Stocks Feature (20 Laps)
DNS: (77S) Bryan Shaffer, New Castle
- (30) Bob Egley, Kittanning
- (380) Pat Hanley, Monroeville
- (13X) Ryan Moyer, Harmony
- (54) Wayne Carbo, Saxonburg
- (3S) Paul Schreckengost, Creighton
- (7) Eric Piotrowski, Cranberry Twp.
- (54L) Fred Bratchie, Saxonburg
- (48) Kevin Haas, Sarver
- (28Y) Terry Young, Butler
- (1) Randy Hanovick, Mars
- (24) Mike Gilliland, Portersville
- (57) Troy Jeuther, Valencia
- (55L) Bob Lipinski, Pittsburgh
- (20J) Jim Fosnaught, Bairdford
- (12) Shawn Thorn, New Castle
- (32) Mark Sanders, New Castle
- (78) John Watson, Apollo
- (29B) Scott Byers, Butler
- (9R) Roger Stivenson, Freeport
- (52B) William Shipock, Gibsonia
- (J19) Jason Fosnaught, Creighton
- (02) Joseph Heinl, Prospect
Heat Race Winners: Paul Schreckengost, Jason Fosnaught
Car Count Total: 96
Late Model: 23
Street Stock: 23
Contact: Lernerville Speedway
Eric J. Westendorf, Public Relations Director