Thursday, October 25, 2012
Lernerville’s 'Steel City Stampede' to Bring Down Curtain on 2012 FASTRAK NE Late Model Touring Season for $2000 to-Win Saturday
by Mike Leone
SARVER, Pa. -- The 2012 Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC Pace Performance FASTRAK Northeast Late Model Touring Series will conclude its sixth year of operation this weekend at Lernerville Speedway for the “Steel City Stampede”. Race #24 will feature an open practice and King of the Hill on Thursday (October 25) with heat races on Friday followed by the B mains, feature, and non-qualifier on Saturday. The rain date is Sunday.
This weekend marks the fourth annual DIRTcar Roundup “Steel City Stampede”, which features 10 different divisions! And while the Crate Late Models have been part of the event each year racing for $1,000 to-win, this year marks the first under the FASTRAK banner and will also pay $2,000 to-win on Saturday night!
Lernerville has held only one FASTRAK-sanctioned event that coming on May 30, 2011 when Max Blair won the landmark race that featured 46 cars as part of the $1,500 to-win Bill Emig Memorial “Wild Card Weekend” with the USAC National Sprint Car Series “Eastern Storm”. With that event disappointingly not held this year due to the change in the calendar, FASTRAK was invited to be including in the “Steel City Stampede”!
“We’re really looking forward to being part of the Steel City Stampede and closing out our year at Lernerville,” stated sixth year Northeast Co-Director Vicki Emig. “We had always hoped to eventually be part of this great season ending spectacular, but in the past the date had always conflicted with our Grand Nationals. Though we were disappointed to find out the USAC show wasn’t able to happen this year, the Steel City Stampede opened up. Our drivers really enjoy racing at Lernerville.”
Blair has already secured his fourth Northeast Touring Series Championship thanks to a record 10 victories in 23 starts! Blair finished only once out of the top 10 with a 12th at Expo on July 4 prior to his first DNF of the season last weekend at Roaring Knob.
One driver that certainly knows his way around Lernerville is Mike Pegher, Jr. The former Stock Car champion has also turned a lot of laps at the Sarver, Pa. oval in both a Crate and a Super Late Model. Pegher has clinched the runner-up position for the third straight year, but five finishes of 17th or worse cost him a shot at the title.
Chad Ruhlman is fresh off his second win of the season last weekend at Roaring Knob and was able to put on a lock on the third spot in points in his first year on the tour. Ryan Montgomery and John Over are in their first full season on the Tour and are currently fourth and fifth. Both racers will be guaranteed those positions in the final points by simply attempting to compete.
Sixth through 10th in the standings are former Lernerville Stock Car Champion Butch Lambert, Dan Angelicchio, Will Thomas III, Shane Weaver, and Matt Latta. Holding down the final points paying positions in 11th through 15th are Brad Kling, Joe Martin, Chad Wright, Lauren Longbrake, and Josh Holtgraver.
While an open practice is the norm on Thursday between 7-9 p.m., FASTRAK racer Josh Holtgraver has put together a King of the Hill that will take place tentatively from 9-10 p.m. The event is slated to pay $1,500 to-win and possibly pay back 10 positions. There is a $20 entry fee to participate. Current sponsors are Pegher Painting, Knobeloch Heating & Cooling, Team Blair Racing, Will Thomas Motorsports, Schwartzmiller Ground Maintenance, Weaver Auto Sales, Rocket Chassis, Beatty Welding, Paper Service Company, High Gear Speed Shop, Alternative Power Sources, RKR, HTMA/Precise Racing Products, Jimmy Steigerwald, Triple-S Auto Outlet, FASTRAK Northeast, Ingram Engines, Zero Wraps, Race 1, Big Daddy's Speed Center, Eriez Speedway, Close Racing Supply, Spartan Tool, Flinner Signs & Decals, and Schaeffer Oil. For more info, contact Josh at 412-865-9159.
The “Steel City Stampede” will be under the special event format where the invert following the heat races (drawn by the first heat winner) will determine who runs the K&N “Cold Air Induction” Dash. That dash will pay $100 K&N certificate to the winner, $50 K&N certificate to runner-up with $25 cash going to the remaining starters. The dash will determine the first four starting spots of the feature (five if five heats are run). Three-time dash winner Joe Martin currently leads two-time dash winner Mike Pegher, Jr. by one-point heading into the final event.
Of course all of the great contingency programs will be in full force. Besides the K&N Dash, the Brake Man “Tough Brake of the Night”, Genesis Shocks “Top Dog of the Night”, Precise Racing Products “Pedal Down” Hard Charger, and the Utsinger’s Towing Hoosier Tire Giveaway will also take place.
One lucky fan will win a K&N “Cold Air Induction” system valued up to $500 for use on a personal vehicle. There will be big blow-out sales on FASTRAK Northeast apparel including t-shirts 2 for $25, hoodies $25 or get a hoodie and a t-shirt for $25!
There have been 96 Northeast Touring Series races contested with 35 different winners all-time. Max Blair leads nemesis Mike Pegher, Jr. 22 to 15 followed by Dick Barton, Bobby Powell, John Lacki, David Scott, and Joe Martin with four, Steve Dixon and Josh Holtgraver at three, Alan Dellinger, Dan Angelicchio, Robbie Blair, Ryan Montgomery, Will Thomas III, Wayne Robertson, and Chad Ruhlman with two, and Todd Andrews, Kyle Drum, Frank Guidace, Butch Lambert, Carl McKinney, Dennis Lunger, Jr., Tom Snyder, Jr., Chris Meadows, Jim Frank, Mike Blose, Jonathan Davenport, Gary Knollinger, Dusty Hamrick, Bud Watson, Russell King, George Kowatic, Matt Latta, & Sammy Stile, and Chad Wright with one victory.
Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC Northeast Touring Series Driver Points (must be Touring member to receive points): 1. Max Blair 737 2. Mike Pegher, Jr. 660 3. Chad Ruhlman 622 4. Ryan Montgomery 573 5. John Over 540 6. Butch Lambert 505 7. Dan Angelicchio 500 8. Will Thomas III 440 9. Shane Weaver 429 10. Matt Latta 418 11. Brad Kling 370 12. Joe Martin 355 13. Chad Wright 328 14. Lauren Longbrake 309 15. Josh Holtgraver 305 16. Bobby Rohrer 291 17. Jamie Brown 289 18. Steve Dixon 236 19. Andrew Wylie 233 20. Justin Tatlow 226 21. Nolan Dalton 224 22. Eric Wilson 161 23. Wayne Robertson 143 24. Junior Peters 138 25. Andrew Satterlee & Bryce Davis 130 27. Ricky Meglaye 118 28. Damian Bidwell 109 29. Jason Knowles 106 30. Brian Booher 101 31. Adam Sixt 91 32. George Kowatic 88 33. Mike Laughard 87 34. Shane Bambarger 86 35. Billy Henry, Jr. 65 36. Rick Singleton 52 37. Tim Sears, Jr. & Jon Lichy 48 39. Billy Stile III. 44 40. John Lacki 43 41. Cody Dawson 41 42. Jason Stetson 40 43. Pat Willar 39 44. Steve Beatty 36 45. David Scott & Doug Horton 33 47. Jorden Peters 32 48. Ken Herman 30 49. Matt Harvey 25 50. Shane Hitt 21 51. Luke Carleton 12 52. Robbie Blair 11 53. Scott Smith, Jason Longwell & Chris Peterson 10.
A Feature Payoff: 1. $2,000 2. $1,000 3. $625 4. $525 5. $450 6. $425 7. $400 8. $350 9. $325 10. $300 11. $275 12. $265 13. $250 14. $225 15. $215 16. $210 17. $205 18-24. $200.
Non-Qualifier B Feature Payoff: 1. $175 2. $150 3. $140 4. $135 5. $130 6. $125 7. $120 8. $115 9. $110 10-24. $105. $100 to any driver failing to start either feature.
Pits open each day at 3 p.m. Practice will begin at 7 p.m. on Thursday. Racing will get underway at 7 p.m. on Friday and 6 on Saturday. Transponders (AMB) and RACEceivers are mandatory. There is a $100 entry fee.
Lernerville Speedway is a 4/10-mile clay oval located 11 miles southeast of Butler, Pa. on Route 356 at 313 North Pike Road, Sarver, PA 16055. Lernerville is just 30 miles northeast of the Pittsburgh metropolitan area. For more information, check out their website at www.lernerville.com or call 724-353-1511 (office) or 724-353-1350 (track).
2012 FASTRAK Northeast marketing partners include Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC, Pace Performance, Hoosier Tires, Original Pizza Logs, K&N Filters, The Brake Man, Utsinger’s Towing, Precise Racing Products, Genesis Shocks, VP Fuels, Beyea Custom Headers, H&H Racing Equipment, High Gear Speed Shop, Hyperco, Jake’s Golf Carts, Lincoln Electric, Wrisco Aluminum, and Wylie Race Cars.
You can reach co-directors Vicki Emig and Mike Leone at the FASTRAK Northeast office at 724-964-9300. E-mail to email@example.com and snail mail to 4368 Route 422, Pulaski, PA 16143. The office is open daily late mornings and after 1:30 p.m. For more information, check out the FASTRAK Northeast website at www.fastraknortheast.com. Become our fan on Facebook at www.facebook.com/fastraknortheast.