Sweeney RUSH Late Model Tour’s “Bill Emig Memorial” highlights Saturday night’s racing program
By Mike Leone
July 1, 2014
(Hartford, OH)…Sharon Speedway looks to continue the great stretch of Saturday weather that has been the trend as this week (July 5) would mark the seventh straight completed Saturday night of racing! Saturday’s program as part of the 85th anniversary season will include the Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Dirt Late Model Touring Series along with the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds, HTMA/Precise Racing Products Econo Mods and Deforest Used Parts Mini Stocks. The Summit Racing Equipment Modifieds and Gibson Insurance Agency Stock Cars will have the night off. Race time is 7 p.m.
The Sweeney RUSH Late Model Tour will make its first of two appearances of the season on Saturday night. The event is part of the two-day “Bill Emig Memorial Wild Card Weekend” presented by Bilstein Shock Absorbers with Lernerville Speedway on Friday night. Both shows will pay $1,500 to-win with an additional $1,500 point fund posted to the top five drivers with $500 to the champion. Drivers’ points from each night will be added to their infamous card draws each night. Emig was a longtime car owner in the Semi Late Models and Six-Cylinder Modified divisions throughout the region and his daughter Vicki is the co-director of RUSH. The “Bill Emig Memorial” events have been held at several tracks throughout the region in different divisions over the years.
West Virginia teen Ryan Montgomery enters the weekend as the Sweeney Tour point leader. After leading the Series with five feature wins and a runner-up in points in 2013, Montgomery has yet to win a Tour event in 2014. Montgomery will be making his first Sharon appearance of the season on Saturday night where he won two Tour events in 2013. Pittsburgh area racer, Jason Rider, is in his first season on the Tour and is second in points. Cody Dawson travels from near the Maryland shore to hit all of the shows and is currently third over Chad McClellan, and New York’s John Waters, who has never competed at Sharon before. Sixth through 10th in points are local Eric Wilson, Rick Singleton, John Over, Ralph Morgan, Jr., and John Imler.
McClellan won the opening event at Freedom Speedway in NY on May 30; however, since then Singleton has been on a tear winning the $1,500 “Bill Hendren Memorial” at Roaring Knob Motorsports Complex, then swept the two-day “Mid-Atlantic Classic” two weeks ago at Potomac and Winchester Speedways winning over $5,200. Singleton had went over a year without a Sweeney Tour victory until starting his win streak.
The “John Buzzard Memorial” K&N Dash will pay $100 to-win on Saturday. In addition to RUSH’s normal contingencies, two major prizes will be given away including a Lincoln Electric Power Mig 140C machine and utility cart valued at $750 along with a 16-Volt TurboStart racing battery valued at over $250! These prized will be drawn randomly.
In Barris Supply RUSH weekly action, defending champion Dennis Lunger, Jr. has won four of the eight events; however, missing one of the shows this season has allowed three-time winner and 2012 champion Will Thomas III to maintain the point lead. Alan Dellinger was the opening night winner.
It took Brian Swartzlander to stop the Kings and Weller’s domination of the DIRTcar Big-Block Modifieds on June 21, but Swartzlander wasn’t in competition last Saturday night and it was Rex King, Jr. back in victory lane. “Cooter’s” victory was already his fourth of the season, which is tops in the division. He has a five-point lead over Jim Weller, Jr. in search of his first championship. Weller and the elder King both have two victories apiece. Jim Rasey is fourth in the Hovis Auto & Truck Supply points over Ricky Richner, who has finished fifth or sixth for the last six straight weeks!
Defending champion Jeremy Double joined Steve Burns, Jr. and Brandon Blackshear as repeat winners in the ultra-competitive Econo Mod division. Double has opened up a nine-point lead over Blackshear and Ty Rhoades, who are tied for second. Josh Mueller and Jason Longwell, who are looking for their first wins, are tied for fourth in points 33 behind. Just 41 points separates the top seven in the HTMA/Precise Racing Products standings.
The Mini Stocks had a major shake-up as kingpin Travis Creech was missing in action. The defending champion was leading the Deforest Used Parts points in addition to leading all racers at the speedway with six wins this year. With Creech not in action and a couple other top racers missing, Adam Little was a happy camper winning his career first feature in his rookie season. 2011 champion, Bill Fuchs, now finds himself in the point lead by 21 over Creech. Jamie Maxwell, who is still searching for his career first win, is 36 points back of the lead in third. Jim Haefke, Jr. and Tim McAninch are fourth and fifth respectively.
Hovis Auto & Truck Supply will award four complimentary pit passes for the following week; a pair to a lucky driver in the division that competes first and a pair to a lucky fan. Summit Racing Equipment will award $25 gift cards to the hard charger in the Econo Mod division. Sweeney Chevrolet/Pace Performance will award $50, $25, and $25 certificates to the top three GM 602 crates in the Econo Mods that have been purchased through them or have secondary seals.
Pits open at 4 p.m. with grandstands at 5, drivers meeting at 6:20 followed by RUSH warm-ups and heat races slated for 7. Admission for those 14 and over is $15. Pit passes are $35. As always, children under 13, parking, and camping is always FREE!
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.