By Mike Leone
December 8, 2013
(Hartford, OH)…Sharon Speedway will celebrate the 2013 racing season with the annual Awards Banquet and Dinner on Saturday, February 1, 2014 at the Yankee Lake Ballroom near Brookfield, Ohio. The top 10 drivers from the Governor Insurance Agency DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds, Barris Supply RUSH Late Models, Summit Racing Equipment Modifieds, Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars, HTMA/Precise Racing Products Econo Mods, and Deforest Used Parts Mini Stocks will be honored.
In addition, several special awards will be handed out, and a new class will be inducted into the Sharon Speedway Hall of Fame. Doors will open at 5:30 p.m. with buffet dinner served at 6 followed by the awards ceremony at 7:30. Tickets are $ 30 and reservations need to be made by January 18. Price includes beer and pop. There will be a cash bar for liquor. Ticket order form is available at SharonSpeedway.com by clicking Driver Info then Forms or directly at www.sharonspeedway.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/Banquet-Form-2013.pdf. Driver or car owner must be present to receive awards and monies.
This year’s championship crop includes five new titlists out of six! Jim Weller, Jr. is the only repeat champion. Though it’s the veteran Hubbard, Ohio driver’s third DIRTcar Big-Block Modified championship, it’s his first since the 2004 season with his other title coming back in 2000 on the old half-mile. It was a tremendous season for three-time winner Weller, who had only one finish out outside of the top five in point events. Despite a career best season by Rex King, Jr., which included five feature wins, it wasn’t enough to overcome Weller as he came up 45 points shy- the maximum number of points a driver can earn in a night.
After winning his first career Sharon feature in the 2012 finale, Dennis Lunger, Jr. decided he’d be a Sharon regular for the first time in his career in 2013. The decision certainly paid dividends as the Albion, Pa. racer captured five feature wins in route to the Barris Supply RUSH Late Model title. Lunger beat out 2012 champion Will Thomas III for the crown. Ironically, Lunger and Thomas, who both had five wins at Sharon, tied for fifth spot in the Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC Weekly Series Championship!
Mike Kinney came out on top of the ultra-competitive Summit Racing Equipment Modified division for his first ever championship. The Ashtabula, Ohio driver was one of 12 different winners on the season! Though he only had two victories, Kinney bagged five runner-ups and was like Weller as he only had one finish outside the top 10 in point race events! Kinney’s 61-point margin over Joe Gabrielson was the biggest by any champion.
It’s hard to believe Mike Clark entered the 2011 racing season winless in his racing career that dated back to the mid-90s. The Bristolville, Ohio driver won two races in both the 2011 and 2012 seasons then had a breakout season in 2013. Clark doubled his career win total with four victories including his biggest career win in the $ 1,500 “Apple Festival Nationals” on his way to the Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Car Championship!
The HTMA/Precise Racing Products Econo Mod championship battle whittled itself down to a so-called two-man championship race, but in this case it was two young boys. Seventeen-year-old Jeremy Double beat out 12-year-old Jacob Eucker by 12 points for the title. The Bristolville, Ohio champion had seven victories to Eucker’s (Hartford, OH) six.
Travis Creech was the fifth new champion as he captured the Deforest Used Parts Mini Stocks, and it was pretty special for the Warren, Ohio racer as he accomplished the feat in his rookie season and in the final night of points on September 28! Creech, a six-time feature winner, edged out seven-time winner Scott Gilliland, who led the points for most of the year, by just four markers!
Sharon Speedway’s next event will actually come one week before the awards banquet on Saturday, January 25 for the “Circle Track Showdown” featuring circle track racing for Snowmobiles, ATVs, and Side-by-Sides.
FINAL Top 10 Governor Insurance Agency DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds: 1. JIM WELLER, JR. (31) 628 2. Rex King, Jr. (165) 583 3. Dave Murdick (61) 555 4. Ricky Richner (26) 522 5. Rex King (65) 492 6. Bob Warren (96B) 407 7. Rob Kristyak (00) 379 8. Tom Glenn (83T) 365 9. Eric Gabany (3E) 351 10. Jeremiah Shingledecker (37MD) 347.
FINAL Top 10 Barris Supply RUSH Late Models: 1. DENNIS LUNGER, JR. (Schwartz 71L) 614 2. Will Thomas III (9) 574 3. Eric Wilson (27W) 543 4. Josh Double (38) 512 5. Jamie Wrightsman (21J) 471 6. Matt Latta (21) 408 7. Rocky Kugel (21KRT) 339 8. Ben Black (27B) 315 9. Clay Ruffo (14R) 283 10. Brian Booher (Hoover 00H) 222.
FINAL Top 10 Summit Racing Equipment (E) Modifieds: 1. MIKE KINNEY (3) 610 2. Joe Gabrielson (58) 549 3. Jeff Johnson (27) 508 4. Alan Dellinger (White 53) 498 5. Jeff Hassay (10) 426 6. Shawn Shingledecker (54s) 415 7. Gary Sullivan (47s) 358 8. Joel Watson (92) 344 9. Clayton Kennedy (9) & Trevor Herr (32) 329.
FINAL Top 10 Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars: 1. MIKE CLARK (7) 584 2. Brian Carothers (02c) 525 3. Paul Davis (3) 514 4. Tim Burns (66) 456 5. Jamie Duncan (67J) 419 6. Brent Coleman (01) 367 7. Bryan Wagner (56) 362 8. Ron Yarab, Jr. (Burns 70B) 352 9. Jesse Brock (22B) 293 10. Jason Stanke (44) 285.
FINAL Top 10 HTMA/Precise Racing Products Econo Mods: 1. JEREMY DOUBLE (83) 721 2. Jacob Eucker 704 3. Ty Rhoades (12R) 620 4. Ryan Fraley (12) 611 5. Steve Burns, Jr. (70B) 575 6. Larry Root (22x) 495 7. Alan Atkinson (30Too) 490 8. Keith Felicetty (98) 428 9. Junior Mechling (89) 377 10. Brian Hathaway (358).
FINAL Top 10 Deforest Used Parts Mini Stocks: 1. TRAVIS CREECH (75T) 754 2. Scott Gilliland (27) 750 3. Jim Haefke, Jr. (421) 687 4. Bill Fuchs (10) 659 5. Tim McAninch (43) 486 6. Ray Gregory (82R) 470 7. Geof Pinch (36) 409 8. Steve Walker II (4M) 397 9. Pat Drennan (24) 350 10. Jim Clay, Jr. (84J) 349.
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 @SharonSpdwy.