Mercer Raceway Park
Thursday, July 5, 2012
Lutz Looks for Double at Mercer Raceway Park
by Lou Long
MERCER, Pa. -- With the Mid-Season Championships and the Independence Day Holiday in the rear view mirror, the racers will be getting down to business at Mercer Raceway Park with another exciting Saturday Night Live! program. The question on everybody's mind will be whether Mike Lutz can grab another win.
Lutz was reuinted last week with his former car owner, Jim Chappel. It did not take them very long to get the mojo going. They had a disappointing outing in a mid-week All Stars race, but Saturday evening it was like they had never parted company. Lutz drove a flawless race and Chappel had the car set up perfectly for him. The rest, as they say, was history.
At Mercer Raceway Park, the points are awarded to the car, not to the driver. So, the Lutz win added to the total accumulated by Bob Felmlee over the first half of the season. That moved the number 8 team back into second in the championship standings. Now, they trail Eric Williams by 22 points. So, if Lutz can do the double, there is a good chance that he could overtake Williams.
It won't be easy, though. Williams will be scrapping for every point possible, as he is going for his first title in the Luxaire Heating & Cooling Sprint Car division. Plus, Rod George, Scott Priester, Jack Sodeman, Jr., Brandon Spithaler and many others will be gunning for the win.
Lonny Riggs scored the win last week in the Approved Toilet Rentals 358 Modifieds after a stirring battle with defending champion Jimmy Holden. While they have both been fast at times, they have both suffered from numerous mechanical woes. Indeed, Holden finished a close second with a wounded racecar. So, Rob Curtis, who has both been fast and consistent, sits atop the point standings in that class. Kyle Fink, with a win and a second in his recent outings, will be among the other contenders.
Dennis Wagner got the win last week in the Ti22 Performance Outlaw Sprint Warriors, his first of 2012. Joe McEwen, Justin Whitesell, Rob Felix and rookie C.J. Jones will be some of the hot shoes trying to stop Wagner from getting on a roll.
Russ Byler captured the flag in the Precise Racing Products Stock Cars, but Rusty Moore still leads the seasonal standings. Curtis J. Bish, Bob Scwartzmiller, Dan Lewis, Matt Wagner and a host of others will add to the excitement, for sure.
Shane Pfeuffer stopped Mark Marcucci's win streak, which means that Marcucci will no longer be relegated to the last spot on the starting grid for the Big Daddy's Speed Center/Rock Concrete Modified Lites. Can he start another skien? Kotie Kirkbride has been logging some good runs lately, so she just may be the one to stop him.
In the Mini Stocks, recent high school graduate Tyler Fulton got the win in the highly competitive class. Wally Stearns, Ed Haylett, Rudy Troples and Tim Callahan are among the veteran drivers who may have something for the young gun this weekend.
Remember that the action starts at 7:00 sharp, and that the gates will open at 4 p.m.
Regular event ticket pricing will be in effect. So adults will get all of theaction for a mere $13; seniors for $11, and students for a fivespot. Children ages 8 and under will be free, as usual. Family Passes will be just $28, which allows entry for two adults and up to four children of any age. The Pit Pass fee will be $25.
Coming up soon will be the of the FASTRAK Late Model Series for a Northeast Regional showdown, on July 14. The ARDC Midgets will be in for the first of their two appearances on July 21.
About Mercer Raceway Park: Mercer Raceway Park is a 3/8-mile dirt track located minutes from both Interstate 79 and 80 just off Route 19 on Fairground Road in Mercer, Pa. Dirt track racing and quality family entertainment are presented weekly from late March through late September. For more information, check out www.mercerracewaypark.com, www.twitter.com/mercerraceway, or www.facebook.com/mercerracewaypark.