FASTRAK NE Late Model Series is featured attraction Saturday with double features on Manufacturers Night
By Mike Leone
August 15, 2012
(Hartford, OH)…After the second rainout in the past three weeks last Saturday, Sharon Speedway is primed to return to action this Saturday night (August 18). It’ll be a big night of action that will get underway 30 minutes earlier than normal with action beginning at 6:30 p.m.
The Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC Pace Performance FASTRAK Northeast Late Model Touring Series returns for “Manufacturers Night” along with the May 27 make-up feature, which will begin the night. Also on the card will be the Summit Racing Equipment E-Mods, Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars, HTMA/Precise Racing Products Econo Mods, and the Deforest Used Parts Mini Stocks. Saturday’s home-cooked meal special is stuffed shells and meatballs for $6.
The $1,500 to-win make-up feature is part of the Bill Emig Memorial “Wild Card Weekend,” which will crown a $500 champion amongst the $1,500 point fund. Following that event, the cars and stars of FASTRAK will compete in an entirely new program with another $1,500 on the line!
A strong field of cars is expected for FASTRAK’s “Manufacturers Night,” will see over $27,000 in products and certificates awarded to FASTRAK teams in a random drawing! Fifty drivers will be guaranteed to receive at least two prizes!
The Northeast Touring Series is having another banner season with great car counts. The Series averages 35 cars per show, and had 42 at the last Sharon event. Three-time champion, Max Blair of Centerville, Pa., is the Series point leader. Blair has set a single season Touring record in 2012 winning seven features, but has been shutout from victory at the past five events. Sharon point leader, Will Thomas III of Sharpsville, Pa., is the only other driver to repeat. Thomas also has three Weekly Series wins at Sharon.
Other drivers winning Northeast Touring Series features this year include Mike Pegher, Jr., Ryan Montgomery, Joe Martin, Chad Ruhlman, Matt Latta, and most recently Wayne Robertson at Black Rock Speedway last Saturday.
The Touring Series has been featured 12 times at Sharon over the past three seasons with eight different winners. Blair, who won the Bill Emig Memorial Night 1 on May 26, is a three-time winner, while Josh Holtgraver and Martin are the only other repeat winners. Other Touring winners at Sharon include Pegher, David Scott, the late Gary Knollinger, George Kowatic, Montgomery, and most recently Sammy Stile.
The battles between Joel Watson and Jack Young have been well documented throughout the 2012 season in the E-Mods. Just three points separate the two combatants with Watson leading the way as each driver has three feature wins. Third place point man Joe Gabrielson is fresh off his second win of the season, but trails Watson by 57 points. The E-Mods continue to attract between 20-30 cars per night.
It was good to see a season-high 21 Stock Cars in the pits the last time out for the Stock Cars and the competition level was high. Nine drivers were in contention for the victory for most of the race as Shaun Hooks held off point leader Tim Burns for his second win of the season. Burns, who has never won a track championship, added to his point lead extending it to 14 over four-time champion Steve D’Apolito, who finished third.
On August 4, the Econo Mods produced another strong field of 19 cars. It was former Stock Car racer Steve Burns, Jr. holding on for his second win of the season. Brandon Blackshear leads Mini Stock graduate Jeremy Double by 37 markers. Fourteen-year-old Cameron Nastasi and Brian Foley, Jr. were the latest additions to the growing class, which is now up to 34 different competitors this year!
Jim Haefke, Jr. has been tough to beat wherever the 30-year-old Austintown, Ohio racer has started from this year. On August 4, Haefke took off from the pole position and never looked back for his track leading seventh victory. Haefke won’t be able to start any better than sixth this Saturday. The second-year racer is closing in on for his first championship as he leads defending champion Bill Fuchs by 32 points.
“The weather looks perfect for Saturday, and this should be a great night of racing,” stated third year GM Dave Willoughby. “We should have a great field of FASTRAK cars, and fans will be able to see two features plus a complete show of E-Mods, Stock Cars, Econo Mods and Mini Stocks for regular admission prices!”
Pits open at 4 p.m. and grandstands at 5. Racing will get underway at 6:30. Adult admission is $13. Kinds 13 and under are free. Pit passes are $30.
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.