Big-Block Mods & 2nd appearance by Penn-Ohio Pro Stock Series highlight Saturday’s “Steel Valley Thunder” program at Sharon

By Mike Leone

July 24, 2018

(Hartford, OH)…Sharon Speedway will wrap-up the month of July this Saturday night (July 28) with a “Steel Valley Thunder” program on Hovis Auto & Truck Supply Night. The Hovis Auto & Truck Supply Big-Block Modifieds, Penn-Ohio Championship Series for the Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars, HTMA/Precise Racing Products RUSH Sportsman Modifieds, Summit Racing Equipment Econo Mods, and Junior Sprints for kids will be part of the program. A mechanics race for Stock Cars will also be run at the end of the night. It’s Twin-State Auto Racing Club Night with FREE grandstand admission for club members. Race time is 7 p.m.

After being unable to complete a full night for the first three months of the season, the Big-Block Modifieds will try Saturday night to get in their third event during the month of July. The prior two July events were under The Mod Tour sanction with Mike Maresca taking the $ 2,000 “Lou Blaney Memorial” win for his first career Sharon victory on July 7, while last Saturday night saw three-time track champion, Rex King, Jr. victorious. It was quite the weekend for the Bristolville, Ohio racer, who also won Friday’s Mod Tour event at Lernerville. Top racers like Jim Weller, Rex King, Dave Murdick, Jim Rasey, Jeremiah Shingledecker, Garrett Krummert, Will Thomas, and others will be hungry for a victory.

The Penn-Ohio Pro Stock Championship Series will make their second appearance of the season in an $ 1,000 to-win, $ 150 to-start feature event. Back on June 16, Brent Johnson’s first career Sharon win was worth a monster $ 10,000 payday as he thwarted off Chris Schneider. The Penn-Ohio Series has only been able to complete three other events with Schneider, Bobby Whitling, and Andrew Gordon victorious.

The Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars haven’t had much better luck than the Big-Block Modifieds getting shows in. Besides the $ 10,000 Penn-Ohio event, only two regular events were run, and with the high car counts, winners Jason Fosnaught and Gordon both earned $ 700 checks. Chris McGuire has a five-point lead over four-time track champion, Steve D’Apolito, in the track standings. Curt J. Bish, Fosnaught, and Mike Clark are third through fifth in points.

Garrett Krummert became the first repeat winner in the RUSH Sportsman Modifieds this season taking the victory last Saturday night despite starting seventh. The GM 602 crate engine division continues to draw solid car counts and has only dipped under 20 cars on two occasions over the past three years. Blaze Myers, Chas Wolbert, and Jeremy Weaver have also been victorious. Myers’ win was the first of his career, while Weaver’s was his second but first ever at Sharon. Krummert has opened up a 20-point lead in the HTMA/Precise Racing Products standings over Josh Deems. Rocky Kugel, Kole Holden, and Kyle Martell are third through fifth.

Veteran racer Dwayne Clay earned his milestone 40th career Sharon win last Saturday in the Econo Mod division for his first victory of the season. Jacob Eucker currently leads the Summit Racing Equipment standings as he’s the division’s only repeat winner as he was forced to start 12th last Saturday after two straight wins. Brian Toto and Ty Rhoades are tied for second just five points back with Mark Titus in fourth as all three are in search of their first career Sharon wins. Defending and two-time champion, Steve Haefke, sits fifth without a win in 2018.

As a reminder on Saturday for the Big-Block Modifieds, RUSH Sportsman Modifieds, and Econo Mods, if 24 or more cars are present then the highest purse structure will be offered, and if there are 32 or more cars a non-qualifier will be run. The highest finishing “358” Small-Block Modified will receive a $ 100 bonus.

Pits are open throughout the afternoon on Saturday with pit passes going on sale at 4 p.m., while the main grandstands open at 5. Pill cutoff is 6:20 p.m. and heat races are at 7. Grandstand admission for those 14 and over is $ 13. Patio seating upgrades are just $ 5 and fan suite seating upgrades are just $ 20 over the cost of general admission. In order to reserve either of these ahead of time, call the office Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 330-772-5481. As always, children under 14 and parking are always FREE! Pit passes are $ 30. Pit passes for children 12 and under are $ 20.

After a month hiatus, the “410” Sprints will open the month of August on the 4th for their first of three straight Saturday night appearances racing for $ 3,000. It’ll be another Menards “Super Series” event on Sawtelle Tree Night. The Stock Cars, RUSH Sportsman Modifieds, and Econo Mods will also be part of the program.

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.

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Sharon Speedway

Menards “Super Series” action returns to Sharon on Saturday featuring The Mod Tour for big blocks

By Mike Leone

July 17, 2018 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(Hartford, OH)…After a successful 10th annual “Lou Blaney Memorial” on July 7 and a weekend off, Sharon Speedway looks forward to returning to action this Saturday (July 21) for a Menards “Super Series” event featuring The Mod Tour for the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply Big-Block Modifieds along with Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars, HTMA/Precise Racing Products RUSH Sportsman Modifieds, and the Summit Racing Equipment Econo Mods. It’ll be Texas Roadhouse Night with kids bike races at intermission. Race time is 7 p.m.

Fresh off the “Lou Blaney Memorial” and last Thursday’s visit to nearby Expo Speedway part of the Trumbull County Fair, The Mod Tour will make their third visit to Trumbull County in two weeks on Saturday at Sharon in a $ 2,000 to-win event.

Unfortunately, due to rain, the “Lou Blaney Memorial” was the first time all season that the Big-Block Modifieds have completed a feature event. Mike Maresca became the ninth different event winner in 10 years as he scored his first career Sharon win. The only other time the Big-Block Modifieds have hit the speedway was back on May 26 before rain washed out the remainder of the program.

It’ll be a doubleheader weekend for The Mod Tour as they’ll also be at Lernerville Speedway on Friday night. Rex King, Jr. has an 18-point lead on his father entering action this weekend. Veteran racers Dave Murdick and Jim Rasey are third and fourth in points. Canadian Tyler Willard is fifth. Completing the top 10 in points are Rick Regalski, Jr., J.R. McGinley, Chris Haines, Kevin Hoffman, and Lonny Riggs.

Erick Rudolph is the Series’ only repeat winner with victories at Tyler County and Expo Speedways, while Mat Williamson, Jim Weller, Jr., Rex King, and of course Maresca have also found victory lane. The Mod Tour has competed at Sharon 26 times throughout their history with Rasey leading the way at five victories.

The Stock Cars last competed on June 30 when Jason Fosnaught topped a 27-car field for his first career Sharon win. That full field plus car count allowed the Stocks to race for the $ 700 to-win purse. That event was the Stocks’ first full points events of the season as the June 16 “Steel Valley Pro Stock Nationals” event won by Brent Johnson was show-up points only. The Stocks also received show-up points on May 26 when their heat races were completed before the rains came. Fosnaught has a two-point lead on Chris McGuire in the Gibson Insurance Agency Championship race with Mike Miller, Steve D’Apolito, and Mike Cark completing the top five.

The RUSH Sportsman Modifieds raced both on June 30 and with the Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series on July 2. The full field on June 30 allowed the RUSH Mods to race for the $ 500 to-win purse, which was won by Garrett Krummert, then the $ 600 special on July 2 went to Jeremy Weaver for his first career win, which also came over a 24-car field. The RUSH Sportsman Mods have completed four events in 2018 with an average car count of nearly 26 per event. Krummert has a six-point advantage on Rocky Kugel in the HTMA/Precise Racing Products title run with Josh Deems, Weaver, and Justin Shea completing the top five.

Rounding out the program are the Econo Mods, and like the Stocks and RUSH Mods, they also raced for their high purse structure of $ 400 to-win last time as there were 28 cars in the pits. Jacob Eucker enters Saturday night a winner of two straight, meaning he’ll start no better than 12th. The only other completed Econo Mod event was back on May 5 when Brad Blackshear was victorious. Ty Rhoades, who is still searching for his first career Sharon win, has a 15-point lead over Mark Titus. Brian Toto, Josh Mueller, and Eucker are third through fifth in the Summit Racing Equipment standings.

Pits are open throughout the afternoon on Saturday with pit passes going on sale at 4 p.m., while the main grandstands open at 5. Pill cutoff is 6:20 p.m. and heat races are at 7. Grandstand admission for those 14 and over is $ 13. Patio seating upgrades are just $ 5 and fan suite seating upgrades are just $ 20 over the cost of general admission. In order to reserve either of these ahead of time, call the office Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 330-772-5481. As always, children under 14 and parking are always FREE! Pit passes are $ 30. Pit passes for children 12 and under are $ 20.

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.

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Sharon Speedway

Dave Blaney becomes 1st “Lou Blaney Memorial” Sprint Car repeat winner after 10 years with All Star victory Saturday night; Career 1st Sharon win for Mike Maresca in Mods

By Mike Leone

July 7, 2018

(Hartford, OH)…On what was the most beautiful race day of the season, a huge crowd turned out on Saturday night at Sharon Speedway to remember the life and accomplishments of hall of fame racer Lou Blaney. Celebrating in the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply victory lane for the 10th annual “Lou Blaney Memorial” presented by Ollie’s Bargain Outlet were Dave Blaney-All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Cars and Mike Maresca-The Mod Tour for the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply Big-Block Modifieds. The event once again benefitted the Alzheimer’s Association. Former racer Jack Bickel of Butler, Pa. was the $ 1,000 Lou Blaney “Shirt Out” winner presented by Colonial Metal Products & Carpenter Towing and donated $ 100 back to the Alzheimer’s Association.

It couldn’t have been more fitting than for a Blaney to become the first event repeat winner for the Sprint Cars. Lou’s oldest son, Dave, retook the lead from George Hobaugh in lapped traffic on lap 23 as the 2014 event winner became the first Sprint Car driver to score multiple wins in the “Lou Blaney Memorial” after 10 years! Blaney also couldn’t have picked a better time to capture his first All Star Circuit of Champions victory of 2018. The 30-lap victory was worth $ 5,000 as Blaney became the fifth different Sprint Car winner in as many events in 2018 at Sharon.

“I’m really happy to win this race and have all these people here,” expressed the 55-year-old Hartford, Ohio native. “It’s a cool night for us. For a couple weeks I’ve really wanted to win this race. We’ve done a lot of things to get ready. You know what you’re getting when you come here- it’s slick, smooth, and wide. I love coming back here to race. It’s kind of bittersweet on dad’s race, but it pays off when you do this. Car owner Pete Grove won this a couple years ago with Danny Holtgraver. I couldn’t be happier to get my first All Star win this season here. You never know what’s going on behind you and I didn’t want to get bottled up so I moved up. We had enough for them tonight.”

Carl Bowser got an excellent start as the green flag waved on the feature event, but Blaney drove by Bowser off turn two on the opening lap for the lead. After gaining two positions in the dash to start fifth in the feature, George Hobaugh looked strong using the bottom to pass All Stars points leader Carson Macedo and Gary Taylor for third on lap one. Hobaugh then remained on the bottom to pass Bowser for second on lap two before a spin by Australian invader, Mitchell Wormall.

When racing resumed, Blaney would catch lapped traffic on lap eight with a straightaway lead on Hobaugh; meanwhile, the battle for third was intense. Macedo put a big slider on Bowser in turns three and four on lap nine to grab the spot; however, one lap later, Bowser and Chad Kemenah were able to get by as the trio went three-wide. Positions would continue to change on a fast pace as the sixth starting Kemenah moved into third on lap 11 with Macedo following. Then on lap 12, Gary Taylor moved back into the top five dropping Bowser back another spot.

Macedo looked like he may have had the fastest car on the track as he ripped around Kemenah on the top to regain the third position; meanwhile, Hobaugh began cutting into Blaney’s lead as the laps ticked off. With Blaney mired in heavy traffic, Hobaugh closed right in on lap 19. Hobaugh continued to hound Blaney and finally was able to sneak under the hall of famer off the bottom of turn two to lead lap 22. The western Pa. former Micro Sprint standout’s bid for his first career “410” win ended when Blaney got back by one lap later in lapped traffic before Parker Price-Miller got into the fence and brought out the event’s second and final caution with 23 laps scored.

The high-flying Macedo had to be licking his chops when the yellow came out as he had been closing in on the top two, who were running the bottom; however, heartbreak struck for Macedo under caution as his right rear tire went down. Not long before the caution, Macedo slapped the turn three fence pretty hard. The caution and flat for Macedo was a break for Spencer Bayston. Like Macedo, Bayston had been running the top and when racing resumed, he passed Kemenah for fourth on lap 25 then Taylor for third on lap 28 as he stayed committed to the top.

Back up front, Blaney was too strong for Hobaugh in the Pete Grove-owned, Premier Motorsports/Mohawk Northeast #70 as he captured his 49th career All Star Circuit of Champions victory. It was also Blaney’s 29th of his career in a Sprint Car at Sharon to go along with a pair of Big-Block Modified wins and one in an E-Mod giving him 32 overall at the track he grew up at.

After turning in what was an impressive 11th in the first All Star show this season at Sharon after winning his first Series heat race, Hobaugh was coming off a fifth place in last Saturday night’s non-sanctioned Sprint show at Sharon, then shocked everyone with his best performance of his career in a “410” Sprint Car to take a well-earned second place.

“I was just trying to keep myself calm driving around there and I was like ‘shit there’s Dave and I drove by him’,” explained the Chicora, Pa. driver of the Colliers Custom Kitchen/Hobaugh’s Auto Parts-sponsored #40. “It was really awesome to race with those guys. Dad raced with Lou for years. I got to watch Lou race when I was a kid and to be out here racing with Dave for the lead- that’s a blast and you can’t do any better than that.”

Bayston ran out of time as he finished third from the eighth starting spot. Taylor was fourth over Kemenah. Lee Jacobs picked up the MSD Performance Hard Charger award racing from 19th to sixth. Bowser dropped to seventh over Paul McMahan. Though all eyes were up front over the final seven laps, Macedo charged back forward after changing his right rear tire to finish ninth. Max Stambaugh was 10th.

Kemenah set fast time overall against the 41-car field in qualifying with a lap of 13.986. Andrew Palker, Paul McMahan, Tony Stewart, Bayston, and Hobaugh won the heat races. Bowser and Blaney won the twin dashes to earn the front row of the feature. Two-time track champion, Jack Sodeman, Jr., won the C main, while Dale Blaney won the B main in his first 2018 start at Sharon.

Mike Maresca led all 35 laps of The Mod Tour-sanctioned feature for what was the season opener for the Hovis Auto Truck Supply Big-Block Modifieds. Maresca earned $ 2,000 as he became the ninth different winner in 10 “Lou Blaney Memorial” events as Jim Rasey still remains the only repeat winner on the Modified side!

“This means a lot to win this,” stated the soon to be 23-year-year Hannawa Falls, NY driver. “I’m not from the area, but I’ve heard a lot about Lou (Blaney) for what he’s done in the sport being around here the past couple years. This is cool to win a big race like this. I was surprised how fast the race was going. I just tried to hit my marks every lap. I had a really good car tonight. We worked on it all day after having a rough go last night. We tried a couple different things I’ve never tried before and it seemed to work pretty good.”

Maresca drew the pole and was never seriously challenged over the 35 non-stop laps that was timed in 11:43.881. Maresca drove a great race through lapped traffic as he never let Kevin Hoffman get close enough to challenge. Maresca’s Saint Lawrence Radiology/Twin Leaf Storage/Integra Shocks/Keyser Manufacturing/Russ King Racing-sponsored #7MM took the checkered flag first by 1.451 seconds for his first career Sharon victory. Hoffman was a Sharon career best second. Jim Weller, Jr. passed Rex King on lap 29 to finish third for the 2015 event winner. King was fourth over his son Rex, Jr., who was the 2014 race winner.

Rasey was sixth over Dave Murdick, who won the event in 2015. Last Saturday night’s RUSH Sportsman Modified winner, Garrett Krummert, was eighth as Travis Shingledecker and Rick Richner completed the top 10. Heat wins went to Richner, Rick Richner, Krummert, and Murdick over the 32-car field. Jimmy Holden won the last chance B main.

All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Cars “Lou Blaney Memorial” (30 laps, $ 5,000 to-win): 1. DAVE BLANEY (Grove 70) 2. George Hobaugh (40) 3. Spencer Bayston (Swindell 39) 4. Gary Taylor (McGhee 11) 5. Chad Kemenah (Hunter 10H) 6. Lee Jacobs (Lewis 81) 7. Carl Bowser (Chiapelli 98) 8. Paul McMahan (Buch 13) 9. Carson Macedo (Gaerte/Norman 3G) 10. Max Stambaugh 5M) 11. Cale Conley (Jessup 7K) 12. Dan Shetler (7K) 13. Jared Zimbardi (35) 14. Tim Shaffer (Demyan/Rudzik 49X) 15. Andrew Palker (57x) 16. Dale Blaney (Coomer 21) 17. Jac Haudenschild (3) 18. Aaron Reutzel (Baughman 87) 19. John Garvin, Jr. (51) 20. Brandon Spithaler (22) 21. Mitchell Wormall (97AU) 22. Tyler Esh (35) 23. Parker Price-Miller (Destiny 4) 24. Tony Stewart (14) 25. Brandon Matus (13).

DNQ for the feature: Dan Kuriger (08), Bryan Salisbury (126), Adam Kekich (5K), Brent Matus (33), Jack Sodeman, Jr. (23Jr), Michael Bauer (46), Jeremy Kornbau (27K), Cody Bova (20B), Paige Polyak (Woodring 19), Gary Kriess, Jr. (Frederick 55), Joe McEwen (Blaney 11), Paul Kish (4c), Eric L. Williams (4W), Joe Trenca (Mucci 98), Sye Lynch (42), Haley Lapcevich (77L).

The Mod Tour for the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply Big-Block Modifieds “Lou Blaney Memorial” (35 laps, $ 2,500 to-win): 1. MIKE MARESCA (7MM) 2. Kevin Hoffman (00) 3. Jim Weller, Jr. (31) 4. Rex King (65) 5. Rex King, Jr. (165) 6. Jim Rasey (32) 7. Dave Murdick (61) 8. Garrett Krummert (29) 9. Travis Shingledecker (73MD) 10. Rick Richner (26) 11. Rick Regalski, Jr. (13) 12. Jeremiah Shingledecker (37MD) 13. Will Thomas III (9) 14. Tyler Willard (777) 15. Chris Haines (35H) 16. J.R. McGinley (66M) 17. Sid Unverzagt, Jr. (17JR) 18. Lonny Riggs (Black 58) 19. Colton Walters (18) 20. Kyle Fink (66F) 21. Jimmy Holden (28H) 22. Bob Warren (96B) 23. Skip Moore (17M) 24. Mark Frankhouser (03) 25. Tom Holden (68H) 26. Brian Swartzlander (83).

DNQ for the feature: Erik Martin (29E), Shawn Fleeger (88), Chris Rudolph (25), Tom Glenn (83T), Rich Whitney (19W), Steve Barr (25B).

There will be no racing on July 14 due to the Trumbull County Fair. Racing returns on Saturday, July 21 for another Menards “Super Series” event featuring The Mod Tour in a $ 2,000 to-win event along with the Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars, HTMA/Precise Racing Products RUSH Sportsman Modifieds, and the Summit Racing Equipment Econo Mods. There will be kids bike races during intermission. It’ll be Texas Roadhouse Night. Pits open at 4 p.m. with grandstands at 5 and racing at 7.

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.

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Sharon Speedway

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