MOTHER NATURE ALLOWS FOR A SPECTULAR NIGHT OF RACING
By Kayla Peting and Nathan Aldrich
After struggling with weather, the past few weeks the rain finally decided to break while the CRSA sprints came to visit the Penn Can Speedway. With a full night of racing on the docket there was much anticipation as the crowd started to fill in the stands as the pits were busy with action. With 81 cars in the pits, every driver was ready to go after not running last week. Drivers are driving hard to get every point possible as the battle is on for the championship. The SUNOCO Race Fuels and Stafursky Paving Modifieds, Sleepy Hollow Turf and Insinger Performance Sportsman, Street Stocks, A&E Tire and Auto Center 600cc Modifieds, Gary’s U-Pull it 4 Cylinders and the Junior division were all on hand to race alongside the CRSA Sprints.
With the CRSA Sprint Cars making their second visit of 2021 to the Penn Can Speedway Jeff Trombley picked up his first ever Penn Can sprint car win. Ron Greek and previous feature winner Kyle Pierce picked up wins in the two heat races as the lineup for the feature was set. Dan Craun and Jeff Trombley set the pace as they thundered down the front stretch. Trombley grabbed the lead down the front stretch as Josh Flint moved past Pierce for third. Flint stayed after it getting the second spot away from Craun and setting his sights on the lead. As Darryl Ruggles took the seventh spot from Mike VanPelt the first and only yellow flag sliced through the air. Greek spun off of turn four coming onto the front stretch and made hard contact with the inside wall. As Trombley brought the field back to green for the single file restart Dana Wagner and Matt Priscott battled for the fifth spot. Wagner took the position as Ruggles next moved past Priscott to take away sixth. Behind the trio Brandon Sampson and Trevor Years swapped the 9th position betwixt them as Years came away with the spot.
With 11 laps in the books Trombley began to close on lapped traffic and a scary moment ensued for Flint. As Trombley cleared the lapped machine of Hank Katz, Katz caught the wall right in front of Flint. Some quick maneuvering by both drivers kept the race green as Trombley gained a little breathing room in the lead and Katz headed pit side. Trombley next came up on the battling cars of Greek and John Cunningham and would have to be patient as he navigated the traffic. When the two cars split Trombley found his lane up the middle on lap 17 and sailed off over the closing laps to take the win. Flint, Craun, Pierce, Wagner, Ruggles, Priscott, VanPelt, Years and Sampson rounded out the top 10.
Feature winner Jeff Trombley is a veteran racer with 30 years’ experience between sprint cars and modifieds. Trombley enjoys the short track feel of Penn Can as it’s one of the smaller tracks the CRSA sprints compete on. When asked about racing through the lapped traffic Jeff smiled saying “momentum is really big in these cars, you can’t lift too much or they’ll catch you from behind so you have to be patient when they are in front of you and take the hole as soon as it opens”. Trombley spoke highly of his competitors after running the race untouched despite working heavy traffic and with Flint close behind. He and his team made some car changes between the heat and feature and found a super-fast car for the main event. Jeff would like to thank Maple On The Lake, Powdertech Custom Powder coating, Roosevelt’s, Sampson Motor Car and his entire team and crew.
Stafursky Paving Sunoco Race Fuels Modified action got off to a hot start as Bud Phillips and Paul Rooney got heat racing action going. Byron Worthing quickly moved from his handicapped starting spot before slowing to a stop at the top of turn 2 with no laps on the board. Phillips would grab the lead on the restart while Rooney slid back to fourth as Matt Cole and Darwin Greene slipped by. A Greene spin in turn three collected Rooney and Pompey to setup a second restart. While Devon Zona, Dan Pompey and Byron Worthing worked in tight quarters for fourth, Cole took the lead from Phillips and collected the heat race win. Mike Nagel Sr. celebrated a birthday Friday night while starting on the pole in the second heat. Ned Fitch lined up to his outside and grabbed the lead out of turn two with the high side momentum. Alan Rudalavage gave chase to Fitch on the outside as Brian Malcolm worked past Chris Hunsinger and the pair made sight contact down the front stretch. Malcolm took third from Nagel on the next lap while Rudalavage reeled in Fitch to take the lead. Malcolm would follow past Fitch finishing second to Rudalavage at the line. Heat three was all Kevin Hartnett as he worked his way past Jamie Bedford and Brad Schaffer to take the lead on lap 2. Nick Petrilak had a hot run as well despite starting deeper moving past Bedford on lap 4 for the third spot. Petrilak ran out of laps however as Hartnett took the heat win followed by Schaffer and Petrilak.
Phillips and Nagel Sr. picked up the pace as the pair passed the starting cone and Phillips launched into the lead. Fitch would go to work on Nagel taking the second spot away before a hard charging Rudalavage would cut into the scene. Rudalavage worked his way past Cole and Fitch to takeover the runner up spot as Nagel was shuffled back to sixth. The first yellow of the main came as a checkup in turn three led to a Schaffer spin. Phillips elected for the topside on the restart but surrendered the lead to Rudalavage while Hartnett moved past Fitch and battled with Cole for third. As Hunsinger slowed at the top of turn four the yellow came back out, this time Rudalavage would get his lane choice putting Phillips to his inside. As Rudalavage launched ahead on the restart Hartnett climbed in to second outside of Phillips while Worthing and Malcolm made heavy contact racing for sixth. After the contact Worthing slowed to a stop at the top of turn 2 bringing out the third yellow. With a pair of heavyweights on the front row Rudalavage again elected for the outside and Hartnett prepared for the restart. Rudalavage maintained the lead as everyone settled in to a green flag run.
While Malcolm worked Phillips to take the sixth spot Worthing began his run back through the pack getting Nagel for eleventh and then Greene the following lap. By lap 19 Rudalavage and Hartnett had closed in on lapped traffic as both worked the slower car of Walsh. With a daring move Hartnett would shoot the gap between Walsh and the front stretch wall getting bumped in the process and glancing of the front stretch wall. The move paid off however as Hartnett took the lead holding on until the lap 21 yellow for the slowing machine of Walsh in turn 4. Hartnett would launch well on the single file restart as Petrilak advanced past Pompey for the third spot. The final yellow would setup a six-lap dash when Kenny Sparks and Schaffer ended up facing the wrong direction in turn 3. Everyone gave chase but Hartnett launched ahead and sailed to the checkers followed by Rudalavage, Petrilak, Pompey, Malcolm, Cole, Phillips, Bedford, Mike Loney and Worthing.
Feature winner Kevin Hartnett has multiple victories this season and has had fast machines all year with Brad Grammes turning the wrenches. Though he has been fighting a string of bad luck with some mechanical failures the last few weeks Hartnett has remained positive taking it one race at a time. With the track “having lots of bite allover” it came down to who could work the traffic and find the holes between he and Rudalavage. Coming from a deeper starting spot than Rudalavage, Kevin knew he had to work quick. With the season well underway Hartnett said he isn’t thinking about the championship saying “we run week to week just focusing on getting wins”. The modified star is looking forward to the upcoming fan appreciation night saying “it’s great to have the fans back everywhere” and that “driver’s always need to appreciate the fans because they’re what keeps the sport going”. Kevin would like to thank Brad Grammes, Big Creek Concrete, Brad Grammes Construction, Higfab Chassis, Stone Ridge Reality, and Penske Shocks.
Sleepy Hollow Turf 602 crate sportsman drew a strong field brought to green by Ned Fitch and Alan Komar as Komar got a good launch working the top in turn 2. Behind the leaders Leo McGurrin and Bandon Oleski went door to door before Oleski moved the inside of Fitch. He couldn’t get it done on the inside as they completed lap 2 but would get a successful slide job in turns one and two the next lap taking the spot away. The first yellow would come out on lap four as Ralph Mele bounced off the wall but kept the car going, J Mele slowed to a stop down the backstretch and into turn 3 and Joe Buchanan spun at the top of turn 3. Komar elected for the inside on the double file restart with Oleski his dancing partner getting the jump into turns one and two. Oleski’s night would catch a bad break however as he shot up the track in turn 2 catching the loose dirt and costing him five spots. Lap 7 had Mike Nagel Jr. sprinting forward as he looked to the inside of McGurrin for second only to be halted by the second red flag of the night. The spinning cars of Buchanan, Amanda Scholtisek, and John Cahill were cleared from turn 3 as Scholtisek was taken from the track to be evaluated at the hospital. When the field came back to green it was McGurrin getting the jump over Komar as McGurrin worked the high line. Mike Schane capitalized on his chance getting past Komar as the two worked down the front stretch completing lap 7.
Nagel Jr. moved into the fourth spot as the high side carried him past Ray Leonard on lap 9. As Nagel Jr. made his move for third the next lap Leonard would follow putting Nagel to third, Leonard fourth and Komar fifth. The race stayed green as Brad Weaver took his machine pit side on lap 11, carburetor issues ending his night early while Mike Wilcha and Moose Gulley contested the tenth spot. Gulley would take the spot as Schane reeled in McGurrin for the lead. With the laps winding down Schane had closed the gap, showing McGurrin’s bumper some love as the two ran down the backstretch. With three to go Schane was looking inside McGurrin and McGurrin held on carrying his momentum off the corner. As they came under the parallel sticks Schane changed lanes moving past McGurrin on the high side and taking the lead but it wasn’t over yet. As the pair came down the backstretch and out of turn 4 on the final lap McGurrin would pull up to Schane as the two navigated lapped cars. Schane would hold on by half a car length as McGurrin closed in with Nagel Jr, Leonard, Komar, Mike Salmony, Kolyn Schane, Oleski, Gulley and Ralph Mele rounding out the top 10.
Feature winner Mike Schane Feature winner Mike Schane came through the field steadily coming from the 9th place starting spot with a very racy track. During the red flag he was concerned for his competitors saying, “it’s a big family and anytime that happens you just hope they’re okay”. While carefully making his way to the front Schane knew he and McGurrin could have a good clean battle as there is a lot of respect between the two drivers. When asked about the taps to McGurrin’s bumper in the closing laps he smiled while saying “Leo had the line I needed, and I had to do something different”. The battle between the two drivers has been one of the best shows in a season of great racing at the speedway for Schane though he said the lapped traffic never rattled his confidence as he was still in the lead as they cleared the cars after the checkered. Mike would like to thank Sharkey’s race fuels and Sleepy Hollow Turf.
A& E Tire and Auto Centers 600cc Modifieds were brought to green by CJ Jochum and Larry Furman as Furman took the lead using the high side in turn 2. The battle behind the leaders intensified quickly as Ali Scutt, Doug Lattner and Brenton Miller went three wide and Miller quickly moved past to challenge Furman for the lead. Coming to the flagger stand it was Miller holding the top spot as teammate Gray came charging through the field right behind. Chuck Lohmeyer took the fifth spot from Scutt as the two battled on laps 3 and 4. Scutt would battle back to recover the spot while ahead of the pair Lattner threw a slider on Furman to wrestle away third. Travis Rooney made some moves as the race approached half way passing Devan Sieben for the seventh spot in turn two after battling with John Glover the prior lap. With the race passing half way Miller would begin to encounter lapped traffic with multiple cars going a lap down before the lap 17 red flag. With John Dinniny going hard into the turn 4 outside wall and Devan Sieben slowing before ultimately catching on fire the field would come to a halt. After the all clear was given and both drivers walked away unharmed the field came back to green for a single file restart.
Lohmeyer retook the third spot from Lattner on the restart while Rooney made it past Prychka for seventh. Miller crossed the checkered flags first, picking up his fifth win of the season as Gray, Lohmeyer, Lattner, Furman, Scutt, Rooney, Prychka, Glove and Jochum rounded out the top 10. Feature winner Brenton Miller was very eager to get back to racing after having a week off. When asked about the battle with Ali Scutt and Doug Lattner going three wide, he stated that he just needed to hold his line and not worry about the other drivers. The red flag made him nervous as he knew teammate and friend Brett Gray was right with him on the restart but racing against him “pushes me to be a better racer”. Miller also stated that the track was in great condition especially for not being ran on for a week and that the track crew did an excellent job getting it ready. With the championship race not far off, Miller states “I am going to keep doing what I have been all year, which is get to the front and stay there.” Brenton would like to thank Wade and Brett Gray, Shannon, Carol and sponsors Moose Wraps, Crawn Trucking, Gray’s Trucking and All Things Vinyl by Alecia.
Gary’s U Pull It 4 cylinders put on a great show as Scott Beach and Dakota Fuller picked up the pace under the green flag. Beach handled the lead as Kenny Underwood and Tim Vandermark worked their way around Fuller. Underwood made moves quickly passing Beach for the lead on lap 2 while Jeff Sterling slipped around Fuller for fourth. By lap 4 Vandermark had reeled in Underwood and looked to take the lead on the inside. Underwood held off the first challenge but had his night ended early as he slowed to a stop from the lead on lap 5. With Vandermark taking the outside on the restart he pulled away from Beach, leaving Beach to contend with Andy Bolles for second. While Bolles took the spot Josh Wilder worked the high side to get past Sterling. Mike Ferris threw his name into the mix getting past Wilder, Sterling and Beach to move into the third spot momentarily as Beach began to develop a problem with his rear tire. On lap 9 Beach attempted to pull into the infield as the tire gave him serious issues but collided with the Rob Sterling machine bringing out the yellow. Bolles and Vandermark would go door to door after the restart and would stay that way throughout the rest of the event. Wilder and Ferris had a heated battle for third as Wilder moved to the inside taking the third spot away on lap 11.
On lap 12 Bolles would work the inside of Vandermark as the two rubbed rails off of turn 4. Vandermark held on to the spot but couldn’t shake Bolles off of his tail. Meanwhile Jeff Sterling used the momentum up top to take the fourth spot from Ferris as the crowd’s attention remained on the great battle for the lead. With two to go Bolles made another run at it staying door to door with Vandermark for the entire lap as the two were almost dead even taking the white flag. Vandermark would close the door in turn 3 sealing off the line and taking the victory by half a car length as the pair charged out of turn 4. Wilder, Sterling and Ferris would round out the top 5 finishers. Feature winner Tim Vandermark came back to the pits with a smile on his face and states “that was some of the best racing I’ve ever done in a race car”. After suffering a tough break two weeks ago in the feature and the night ended on the hook, Vandermark stated that the spindle, axle, and tie-rod and that it took some work to get the car back to where it needed to be. When asked about his battle with Andy Bolles, Vandermark stated “Bolles was a rough riding guy and made it so much fun”. Vandermark stated he gets the better run on the straight away and that Bolles had him on turns three and four. The red flag allowed the drivers more time and Tim stated, “I hope the driver is okay, but I went into the stands and had a sandwich with my family”. Tim would like to express his most sincere thanks to his grandpa for all the work he does on the car day in and day out.
Sunoco Race Fuels Street Stocks put on a great race as Travis Brockner and Oliver Gage battled hard throughout the feature. Nick Bonham and Gage took the green flag as Brockner followed Gage past Bonham on the opening lap. The top two would run nose to tail over the first half of the race as Brockner chased Gage around the speedway waiting for a slip up. Gage would hold stead keeping Brockner behind him until the closing laps as Brockner found a lane inside in turns 3 and 4 with three to go. With two laps remaining the cars ran door to door all the way up until turn one of the last lap. With both driver’s pushing hard, the pair made contact and it was Brockner who recovered first, pulling ahead and picking up the win. Feature winner Travis Brockner was excited about racing so hard for the win and had a car that could go anywhere he wanted to put it Friday night. Early on Gage had his number matching every move he made trying to get past for the lead and he felt the two had very equal cars. Brockner downplayed the late race contact as the two had battled cleanly for many laps prior and both were racing their hardest for the win. Brockner would like to thank his sponsors: Michael & Puerschner Construction, Grafix Unlimited, Mootz Tree Trimming, Behrents Performance Warehouse, Billstein Shocks, Wehrs Racing Products, and Close Racing Supply. He would also thank to thank the following people: Ryan, Eric, Mom, Bonham Family, Gram, Grandpa, John and Donna, as well as John and Kathy.
With a great night of racing behind us, the fans are looking forward to the following weekends. With next week being the Twin 20s for the Modifieds which there will be a bonus to the highest feature finish of both races plus a complete show. On the 6th of August it will be Pack the Track and Fan Appreciation Night with a complete show as well. With only 8 weeks remaining till Championship night, the drivers are growing more eager to get those points and the races are something you won’t want to miss. To stay up to date on everything follow us on Facebook at: The Penn Can Speedway or visit our new website: The Penn Can Speedway to be current on all that is going on with our drivers and at the track.
SUPER GEN PRODUCTS CRSA SPRINT CARS
WINNER – 3A JEFF TROMBLEY
2.) 41J-Josh Flint 3.) 18C-Dan Craun 4.) 9K-Kyle Pierce 5.) 25W-Dana Wagner 6.) 48JR-Darryl Ruggles 7.) 22M-Matt Priscott 8.) 112-Mike VanPelt 9.) 13T-Trevor Years 10.) 96S-Brandon Sampson 11.) 28-Ron Greek 12.) J27-John Cunningham 13.) (DNF) 4-Hank Katz 14.) (DNS) 66-Jordan Hutton
STAFURSKY PAVING SUNOCO RACE FUELS MODIFIEDS
WINNER – 5 KEVIN HARTNETT
2.) 145-Alan Rudalavage 3.) 72-Nick Petrilak 4.) 11-Dan Pompey 5.) 119-Brian Malcolm 6.) 24X-Matt Cole 7.) 23P-Bud Phillips 8.) 111J-Jamie Bedford 9.) 17D-Mike Loney 10.) 63-Byron Worthing 11.) 1-Darin Greene Sr. 12.) 99Z-Devon Zona 13.) A11-Sam Allen 14.) 49-Kenny Sparks 15.) 54-Paul Rooney 16.) 014-Schaffer 17.) 4B-Brandon Fritsch 18.) 7M-Mike Nagel Sr. 19.) 713-Mike Walsh 20.) 17-George Kostelansky 21.) 15JR-Chris Hunsinger
INSINGER PERFORMANCE SLEEPY HOLLOW TURF 602 CRATE SPORTSMAN
WINNER – M1 MIKE SCHANE
2.) 70J-Leo McGurrin 3.) M7-Mike Nagel Jr. 4.) 3R-Ray Leonard 5.) 88-Alan Komar 6.) 88S-Michael Samony 7.) 10K-Kolyn Schane 8.) 30 plus-Brandon Oleski 9.) M14-Moose Gulley 10.) 7-Ralph Mele 11.) 84-Mike Wilcha 12.) 3F-Frank Payne 13.) 44-Jim O’Hara 14.) 32-Eddie Kudrako 15.) 4J-Buchanan 16.) QR1-Brad Weaver 17.) 16-Ned Fitch 18.) 75-John Cahill 19.) 88A-Amanda Scholtisek 20.) 7X-J Mele 21.) 121-Jamie Cortazar 22.) Dave Nixon DNS 25B-Ryan Burkett
A & E TIRE AND AUTO CENTER 600 c.c. MODIFIEDS
WINNER – 29 BRENTON MILLER
2.) 28-Brett Gray 3.) 5-Chuck Lohmeyer 4.) 101-Doug Lattner 5.) 217-Larry Furman 6.) 108-Ali Scutt 7.) 54T-Travis Rooney 8.) 28T-T. Prychka 9.) 72-John Glover 10.) 777-CJ Jochum 11.) 30NN-Nate Oropallo 12.) 167-Devan Sieben 13.) 12-John Dinniny 14.) 1-Darwin Greene Jr. 15.) 17-Jeff Baldwin 16.) 22-Mollie Mroz 17.) 4MK-Sheldon Whitman
GARY’S U-PULL IT 4 CYLINDERS
WINNER – 107 TIM VANDERMARK
2.) 354-Andy Bolles 3.)5-Josh Wilder 4.) 56-Jeff Sterling 5.) 17-Mike Ferris 6.) 5B-Madyson Beach 7.) 8W-Rich Wagner 8.) 49Z-Scott Furman 9.) 76-Dave Nixon 10.) 7-Daniel Brown 11.) G55-Dakota Fuller 12.) 21-Scott Beach 13.) 71-Rob Sterling 14.) 16-Kenny Underwood DNS 8-J. Backoswski, 944-Jeremie Trurizo
SUNOCO RACE FUELS STREET STOCKS
WINNER – 151 TRAVIS BROCKNER
2.) 0J-Oliver Gage 3.) 41-Nate Bonham
JUNIORS – WINNER – TREVOR HOUGHTON