Tonkin Collects His Third on Bike Night
The always popular Bike Night returned for its 2022 rendition at the Penn Can Speedway with nearly 70 bicycles given away to area children. With the bikes all lined up along the frontstretch fence, families watched an action packed show that saw some new and familiar faces wrap up their nights in Victory Lane. It was a gorgeous night for racing with a strong car count and a stellar surface showing the fruits of Promotor Keith Beach’s labor.
Brett Tonkin led the way as the Stafursky Paving teammates secured a 1-2 finish in the modified feature Friday night. It’s the third win for Tonkin this season and fourth for the Stafursky team as Dan Vauter made his Victory Lane trip last weekend. With a growing weekly field that featured 21 cars, it was a veteran duo on the front row as George Kostelansky and Mike Nagel brought the field to green. Kostelansky secured the early lead while Mike Loney and Bud Phillips took Nagel three wide off the start. Phillips would be pinched in the middle through turn one with Nagel taking second, Loney third and Nick Petrilak using the inside to grab fourth as Phillips shuffled back to seventh. With Petrilak, Darwin Greene Sr and Phillips packed tightly together into three contact was made between Phillips and Petrilak, leading to a 6 car pileup before the first lap could be completed.
Kostelansky took the outside for the restart as Nagel led down the frontstretch. Kostelansky ripped the outside, moving back into the lead off turn two. With Vauter, Phillips and Brian Malcolm 3 wide for fourth, Vauter snuck under Loney and grabbed the third spot away using Loney as a pick for Phillips. Malcolm muscled his way under Phillips to move into the top 5 on lap four. Lap five had Loney, Nagel and Vauter 3 wide off of four with Vauter on the extreme bottom to take second down the frontstretch. Malcolm slipped under loney to collect the third spot with Tonkin in tow as the field worked lap 8. Vauter made a move for the lead, rolling the bottom to get under Kostelansky on lap ten. He would lead the lap as Nagel came to a stop in turn four drawing the yellow.
Vauter took the inside on the restart as disaster struck for Kostelansky, rolling down the frontretch and pitside with engine failure. Malcolm took over the second spot as Tonkin moved into third. Tonkin made a move on the lowside of turn two to move into second on lap sixteen as the field singled out with ten to go. Tonkin showed Vauter the nose on lap twenty-two looking strong on the inside of the track but lapped traffic would make the difference in the closing laps as the duo worked around Dan Burman who stayed down low. Vauter kept the lead as Tonkin and Burman made contact, costing Tonkin four car lengths. With two to go Tonkin would get the power down pulling alongside Vauter as he powered off the cushion. Tonkin completed the pass as the pair reached the white and sailed off into the night. Malcolm would challenge Vauter for second at the line with Vauter collecting second by half a car length, Hartnett and Alex Tonkin rounded out the top 5. Feature winner Brett Tonkin saluted his crew and the Stafursky family for their hard work in giving him a great car. His battle with Vauter came to him as the top came in and he discussed the strength of the field Penn Can has drawn this season. He would like to thank Jimmy Witco, Alex Tonkin, Garth, Morrison Performance, Stafursky Paving, Stafursky Auto Parts, FNCB Bank, H&K Dunmore Asphalt, and Regal Plumbing and Heating.
Matt Martino and Ned Fitch led the 602 Crate Sportsman as Fitch grabbed the early lead. Martino drifted high in turn two as Mike Nagle Jr. took the middle and Kolyn Schane went low down the backstretch. Martino would be moved back to fourth with Nagel second. A lap 3 yellow for Eddie Kudrako spinning on the backstretch regrouped the field and set up Fitch on the outside of Nagel. Nagel led the way into turn one with things getting hairy from fifth on back. With Alex Konopka, Brian Malcolm Ray Leonard and Michael Samony all jostling for position a John Michael Philipps and Travis Rooney scuffle brought out the yellow once again.
Nagel took the inside on the restart as Brad Weaver and Alex Konopka split Kolyn Schane moving him from third to fifth. Malcolm moved to the inside of Konopka with Schane on top out of turn two before contact between Konopka and Malcolm sent the 14X spinning to the infield. Nagel powered away from Fitch using the inside on the restart with five laps completed. Contact between Ray Leonard and Konopka in turn one would lead to a breakaway at the front as Weaver chased Fitch for second. A calm fell over the field around the halfway point as they singled out for a number of laps. Weaver would use the inside to take second from Fitch with 10 to go as Nagel sailed to a straight away lead. A Ned Fitch spin in the closing laps bunched them back up but Nagel held strong, collecting the winner’s sticker as Weaver, Leonard, Konopka and Mike Schane completed the top 5. Feature winner Mike Nagel has had a rough few weeks but rebounded to find Victory Lane despite caution timing that worked against him. Playing defense at the end, Mike tributed his win to his recently deceased mate Jimmy. Mike would like to thank Brian Franko for lending him a motor to run with, his wife, family and friends, Stanton Racing, NEP Telephone and Snake Creek Marine.
A & E Tire and Auto Center 600cc Modifieds brought some fireworks as Devan Sieben and Andy Bolles brought the field to green. Trouble came quickly as John Dinniny spun in turn four and took a hard hit from Tyler Smith. Bolles restarted from the inside as Sieban took the lead with Nate Oropallo and Larry Furman taking Bolles 3 wide down the backstretch for second. Oropallo next moved to the inside of Seban through three and four securing the lead as they came to the frontstretch. Bolles fell back to fifth with Roger Lewis and Furman door to door for third.Bolles would try to shoot the gap up the middle, making contact with Furman and costing Furman some ground. Adam Mudge would find his way under Tyler Smith on the back stretch after running door to door the prior two laps. Lewis would muscle second away from Sieben as the pair worked turn four just before the race’s halfway point, setting his sights on leader Oropallo. Bolles would take the fourth spot working under Sieben on lap 8 with a Mollie Mroz turn 2 spin slowing the field.
Oropallo elected for the inside on the restart pulling ahead of Lewis on the start. Nolan Smith would pull alongside Lewis down the front stretch, taking the second spot as the pair headed for turn one. Lewis drove deep into turn 3 sliding up the surface into Smith and spinning to a halt in turn 4. Oropallo brought the single file restart back to green with Paige Straway spinning with four to go. Oropallo and Smith would make contact in turn two, spinning Oropallo and sending both to the tail. Third place Adam Mudge would inherit the lead, pulling away from Furman on the restart but getting loose in four as the pair ran door to door down the frontstretch. Furman grabbed the lead with five to go as Oropallo rebounded to the third spot. Mudge would lead lap 16 with a slide job through turn four with Furman engaged on the outside of Oropallo for second. The pair would battle fiercely coming to the white flag as Oropallo slid between Furman and Mudge, parting the seas in turn four to move into second. Furman would drive it in deep as they entered turn 3, collecting Oropallo and spinning both as Mudge took the checkers, Nolan Smith second, Balwin, Sieben and Oropallo rounding out the top 5. Feature winner Adam Mudge stated it was about keeping it clean and has kept a watchful eye on the points battle so far this season. With a strong car early on the car loosened up at the end but Mudge nursed it through for the end. Adam would like to thank Rooney Equipment, Wildside Graphix, Mountain Trucking, Towner Excavating and Erick Hines Trucking.
Mike Ferris and Dakota Fuller brought a competitive Gary’s U-Pull It 4 cylinder field out of turn four with Ferris leading the way down the frontstretch. A big slider carried Ferris up high as Fuller and Brian Salmini dove under. Fuller got pinched out as Ferris and Salmini drag raced down the back stretch, Salmini leading the way into turn 3. Jeff Sterling would next grab third from Fuller, followed by Vandermark for fourth. Rich Wagner would take Wilder and Fuller 3 wide for fifth getting both down the backstretch while Vandermark took third from Sterling on lap 4. Vandermark would work Ferris on laps 5 and 6 taking the spot down the backstretch with Sterling in tow. Wagner would pull off from the 7th spot with six laps to go. Phil Burns went up in smoke setting up a single file restart with four to go. Salmini picked up the checkers as Vandermark, Jeff Sterling, Wilder and Ferris rounded out the top 5. Feature winner Brian Salmini secured his first victory after getting a great start and saluted the clean racing within his division this season. He stated “I haven’t had a feature win since 2017 with some back luck and it just not being my time. Last night the car was hooked up and it felt good. I'm very very happy”. Brian would like to thank sponsors: International Welding Corp, Black Label Construction, Brad Built Parts, Tom’s Service Center, Jimmy Difulvio Construction, TVD Tuned, Windy Acres Maple, JR’s Automotive as well as Sheldon Whitman, Scott Beach, teammate Jeff Sterling his Wife Amanda and son Levi, daughter Hailey, . He would like to give a shout out to Two Dollar Pistol and J&J SheetmetalHe would like to wish Haley a happy 16th birthday!
Sheldon Whitman and Charlie Towner paced the field for the Factory Stocks as Whitman pulled away down the back stretch. Jason Rhodes moved into third on the opening lap as Whitman drifted high on lap two putting Towner briefly in the lead. Whitman and Towner would run door to door for the lead until lap 3 with Witman drifting up the track and losing ground in turn two. Rhodes would move to Whitman’s inside down the back stretch with the pair making contact off turn four. Whitman would send it hard into turn one ending up in the wrong direction and leading to the yellow. Gilbert and Towner led the way for the restart as Towner pulled ahead working the outside.Gilbert would find some grip down the backstretch taking the lead as the pair switched lanes the next lap. A Whitman spin reset things again as Gilbert took the outside and pulled away from Towner. Rhodes and Towner made contact in turn four on lap 12 as the duo vied for second. Rhodes would take the spot on lap 12 but couldn’t catch Gilbert as he collected his second win of the year. Feature winner Charlie Gilbert has been collecting wins at Penn Can speedway for many years and had the right setup and experience to excel on the slick track surface. With the key to victory coming from taking it easy in the corners Charlie would like to thank his wife and crew for their support.
The speedway will be off this coming Friday but comes roaring back on the 24th wthl a full weekly card and will introduce this year’s Hall of Fame class. The show will wrap up June events for the Speedway as the summer and points battles continue to heat up.
STAFURSKY PAVING MODIFIEDS
WINNER – 27K - BRETT TONKIN
2.) 9-Dan Vauter 3.) 119-Brian Malcolm 4.) 5-Kevin Hartnett 5.) 37-Alex Tonkin 6.) 117-Alex Stanton 7.) 72-Nick Petrilak 8.) 23P-Bud Phillips 9.) 73-Casey Plummer 10.) 1-Darwin Greene Sr. 11.) 17D-Mike Loney 12.) 57-Jamie Bedford 13.) 57-Dan Burman 14.) 52B-Brandon Fritsch 15.) 17-George Kostelansky 16.) 7M-Mike Nagel 17.) 14-Stanley Wilkins 18.) 52-Brian Franko 19.) 484-Travis Brockner 20.) 145-Alan Rudalavage 21.) 42-Nick Pecko
602 CRATE SPORTSMAN
WINNER – M7 - MIKE NAGEL JR.
2.) 1A-Brad Weaver 3.) 3R-Ray Leonard 4.) 14K-Alex Konopka 5.) 197-Mike Schane 6.) 55-Marty Goodwin 7.) 54T-Travis Rooney 8.) 10K-Kolyn Schane 9.) 84-Mike Wilcha 10.) 226-Matt Martino 11.) 88S-Michael Samony 12.) 70J-Joe Novak 13.) 44-Jim O’Hara 14.) 32-Eddie Kudrako 15.) 23JR- John Michael Phillips 16.) 16-Ned Fitch 17.) 14X-Brian Malcolm 18.) 12-Parker Overbaugh 18.) 7R-Tommy Groover
A & E TIRE AND AUTO CENTER 600 c.c. MODIFIEDS
WINNER – 54T - ADAM MUDGE
2.) 77X-Nolan Smith 3.) 17-Jeff Baldwin 4.) 167-Devan Sieben 5.) 30NN-Nate Oropallo 6.) 1JR-Darwin Greene Jr 7.) 176-Mollie Mroz 8.) 354-Andy Bolles 9.) 67-Paige Straway 10.) 217-Larry Furman 11.) 12J-John Dinniny 12.) 9X-Josh Towner DNS 999-Bill Johnson DQ 110-Roger Lewis, 80-Tyler Smith
WINNER - 28 - CHARLIE GILBERT
2.) 57ND-Jason Rhodes 3.) 5T-Charlie Towner 4.) 4MK-Sheldon Whitman 5.) 91K-Cody Fassett 6.) 23B-Brad Chilson
GARY’S U-PULL IT 4 CYLINDERS
WINNER – 77 - BRIAN SALMINI
2.) 107-Tim Vandermark 3.) 56-Jeff Sterling 4.) 5-Josh Wilder 5.) 17-Mike Ferris 6.) 71-Rob Sterling 7.) 55G-Dakota Fuller 8.) 71S-Shawn Mills 9.) 21-Scott Beach10.) 25-Mike Girjatowicz 11.) 66-Josh Storms 12.) 8-Phil Burns 13.) 8W-Rich Wagner DNS TO-Chris Wesser