Trackside Now: ASA Late Models Challenge at Tri-County - Saturday, March 15, 2008
Season-Opener Postponed Due to Rain
ASA Late Models
Challenge Division
March 15, 2008
Tri-County Motor Speedway
Hudson, NC
Saturday 3:11pm ET - Mother Nature's not going to be kind to the ASALM teams today.  ASALM Officials have officially pulled the plug on tonight's event.  No makeup has been decided, but one will be announced later.  The ASA Late Model Challenge season opener will now be held April 25th and 26th at the track formerly known as Indianapolis Raceway Park (O'Reilly Raceway Park). 

The ASALM teams, many of whom came from as far as Wisconsin, Ohio and Minnesota, are now forced to pack up and head home.  That's where we're headed too.  So long from Tri-County.

Saturday 2:48pm ET - The rain has intensified and has brought in some serious lightning and thunder along with it now.  ASALM Officials are huddled into the press box looking at the radar and crossing fingers for a chance to get on the track.

Saturday 2:07pm ET - It's still raining here at Tri-County.  Track and ASALM Officials have told Speed51.com that there is a county-mandated 11:30pm curfew.  This track is smack dab in the middle of a neighborhood with two churches on either end of the racetrack.  That's why there's so many rules for when Tri-County can and cannot run. 

The 200-lap feature needs to get to lap 101 in order to be official, so ASALM Officials have moved the 10-minute "halfway break" from lap 100 to lap 101 just in case there are weather or time issues later on, thus making it an official race.

Saturday 1:43pm ET - While we wait out the rain, let's catch you up on some big announcements made here earlier today...In a press conference here at Tri-County earlier this morning, ASA Late Models Officials announced that the Challenge Division would be competing at the 1.25-mile Gateway International Speedway on Saturday, September 6th as a companion to the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series.  Gateway VP and General Manager Lenny Batycki joined ASALM President Ron Varney for the announcement.  In addition, Varney announced that the season-ending ASALM Challenge Series event will be held at the .75-mile Memphis Motorsports Park on Friday and Saturday, November 14th and 15th.

Saturday 1:15pm ET - With just about 20 minutes remaining in the second and final practice session of Saturday for tonight's 200-lap ASALM Challenge feature, the rains hit Tri-County Motor Speedway hard.  All the cars hit pit road instantly and now the once-colorful cars have all turned the ugly shade of "car-cover gray." 

ASA Late Model Officials have announced that they will make every effort possible to get the event in tonight, as they will NOT be able to run tomorrow due to a noise ordinance in the town of Hudson. No racing can take place here on Sundays, so it's either we race tonight or come back again some other time.

Before the rain hit, Travis Dassow once again set quick time. 
1.Kris Stump 16.311
2.Derek Thorn 16.326
3.Travis Dassow 16.366
4.Phil Bozell 16.421
5.Tony D’Ambrose 16.429
6.Brian Campbell 16.433
7.Brent Downey 16.446
8.Peter Cozzolino 16.450
9.Sean Murpy 16.476
10.Kyle Sirizzotti 16.486
11.Logan Ruffin 16.499
12.Jimmy Weller 16.521
13.Jimmy Lang 16.531
14.Alec Carll 16.544
15.Darren Robertson 16.611
16.Eddie Hoffman 16.619
17.Cody Smith 16.688
18.Greg Stewart 16.707
19.Stephen Leicht 16.770
20.Rebecca Kasten 16.834
21.Wade Champeno 16.940
22.Bob Varney 17.021
23.Pat Zorn 17.370
24.Jacob Goede 18.853
25.Trevor Dassow No Time

Saturday 12:23pm ET - First of two practice sessions has completed here at Tri-County.  Defending ASALM Challenge Champion Travis Dassow set fast time, with Sean Murphy, Jacob Goede, Brent Downey and Brian Campbell rounding out the top-five.

Practice Session One (1) Results-12:10p.m. EST
1. 89 Travis Dassow 16.222,,,,90.988 MPH
2. 32 Sean Murphy 16.306
3. 72 Jacob Goede 16.318
4. 25 Brent Downey 16.348
5. 77 Brian Campbell 16.351
6. 11 Peter Cozzolino 16.383
7. 5 Kris Stump 16.400
8. 80 Tony D’Ambrose-R 16.404
9. 44 Derek Thorn 16.415
10. 8 Eddie Hoffman 16.444
11. 76 Logan Ruffin-R 16.510
12. 66 Alec Carll 16.523
13. 86 Jimmy Lang 16.530
14. 21 Phil Bozell-R 16.567
15. 15 Cody Smith-R 16.575
16. 40 Greg Stewart 16.635
17. 93 Kyle Sirizzotti-R 16.664
18. 0 Bob Varney 16.699
19. 1 Darren Robertson-R 16.720
20. 23 Jimmy Weller-R 16.755
21. 90 Rebecca Kasten-R 16.795
22. 08 Stephen Leicht 17.055
23. 077 Wade Champeno-R 17.058
24. 43 Pat Zorn-R 17.330
25. 92 Trevor Dassow-R NO TIME

Saturday 10:55am ET - While numerous NCAA basketball conference tournaments are wrapping up this weekend, with tomorrow being Selection Sunday for the 2008 “big dance,” there’s another breed of “March Madness” going on today at Tri-County Motor Speedway in Hudson, NC.  The tight 3/8-mile track is a short jaunt West on Interstate 40 from schools like UNC, Duke and Wake Forest, but there’s no hoops talk here – just the buzz around the first ASA Late Model Challenge event of the 2008 season.

Twenty-five ASALM teams hit Tri-County yesterday in practice. Jacob Goede, who swept the biggest ASALM races of 2007 at Bristol and Iowa, was quickest overall in his white and orange #72.  In the three sessions, some familiar names were atop the speed charts, while there were also some new faces to the ASALM ranks that had strong runs in practice. 

Today, practice is underway under gloomy skies, as rain showers and thunderstorms are expected to hit North-Central North Carolina later this afternoon.  ASA Late Model Officials are determined to get the show in tonight, despite the forecast. 

We’ll have updates throughout the day here at Tri-County.  The Casola Family and new track General Manager Joe Lewandoski have done some impressive things around the facility and we’ll be bringing you more on that and some of the hot stories from the ASALM Challenge pit area.  For now, check out the top speeds from Friday’s practice.

Practice Session One (1) Results-12:10p.m. EST
1.  11 Peter Cozzolino 16.117,,,,91.580 MPH
2. 32 Sean Murphy 16.141
3. 44 Derek Thorn 16.150
4. 72 Jacob Goede 16.195
5. 89 Travis Dassow 16.215
6. 5 Kris Stump 16.243
7. 77 Brian Campbell 16.258
8. 21 Phil Bozell-R 16.346
9. 66 Alec Carll 16.353
10. 86 Jimmy Lang 16.373
11. 8 Eddie Hoffman 16.397
12. 93 Kyle Sirizzotti-R 16.451
13. 25 Brent Downey 16.529
14. 23 Jimmy Weller-R 16.536
15. 40 Greg Stewart 16.550
16. 15 Cody Smith-R 16.577
17. 1 Darren Robertson-R 16.613
18. 76 Logan Ruffin-R 16.635
19. 90 Rebecca Kasten-R 16.660
20. 80 Tony D’Ambrose-R 16.674
21. 0 Bob Varney 16.739
22. 077 Wade Champeno-R 17.205
23. 43 Pat Zorn-R 17.211
24. 08 Stephen Leicht NO TIME
25. 61 Paul Freeland NO TIME
26. 92 Trevor Dassow-R NO TIME

Friday Practice Session Two (2) Results (4:30p.m. EST)
1. 72 Jacob Goede 15.903,,,,92.813 MPH
2. 89 Travis Dassow 16.135
3. 5 Kris Stump 16.215
4. 77 Brian Campbell 16.248
5. 32 Sean Murphy 16.283
6. 66 Alec Carll 16.308
7. 11 Peter Cozzolino 16.349
8. 44 Derek Thorn 16.365
9. 76 Logan Ruffin-R 16.423
10. 86 Jimmy Lang 16.430
11. 21 Phil Bozell-R 16.464
12. 90 Rebecca Kasten-R 16.490
13. 40 Greg Stewart 16.556
14. 80 Tony D’Ambrose-R 16.575
15. 25 Brent Downey 16.580
16. 8 Eddie Hoffman 16.665
17. 23 Jimmy Weller-R 16.688
18. 1 Darren Robertson-R 16.889
19. 93 Kyle Sirizzotti-R 16.711
20. 0 Bob Varney 16.828
21. 43 Pat Zorn-R 16.951
22. 61 Paul Freeland 17.511
23. 08 Stephen Leicht NO TIME
24. 15 Cody Smith-R NO TIME
25. 077 Wade Champeno-R NO TIME
26. 92 Trevor Dassow-R NO TIME

Friday Practice Session One (1) Results (2:45p.m. EST)
1. 89 Travis Dassow 15.990,,,,92.308 MPH
2. 32 Sean Murphy 16.101
3. 66 Alec Carll 16.200
4. 5 Kris Stump 16.239
5. 21 Phil Bozell-R 16.264
6. 44 Derek Thorn 16.268
7. 77 Brian Campbell 16.300
8. 72 Jacob Goede 16.311
9. 11 Peter Cozzolino 16.326
10. 86 Jimmy Lang 16.406
11. 40 Greg Stewart 16.441
12. 25 Brent Downey 16.591
13. 80 Tony D’Ambrose-R 16.721
14. 76 Logan Ruffin-R 16.752
15. 90 Rebecca Kasten-R 16.835
16. 0 Bob Varney 17.078
17. 43 Pat Zorn-R 17.471
18. 23 Jimmy Weller-R 18.034
19. 93 Kyle Sirizzotti-R 20.594
20. 1 Darren Robertson-R NO TIME
21. 8 Eddie Hoffman NO TIME
22. 08 Stephen Leicht NO TIME
23. 15 Cody Smith-R NO TIME
24. 61 Paul Freeland NO TIME
25. 077 Wade Champeno-R NO TIME
26. 92 Trevor Dassow-R NO TIME



13-year-old Logan Ruffin, fresh off his Speedweeks successes, is here at Tri-County.  (51 Photos)
"Spotterville" is jammed full of ASALM spotters today.
"Car-Cover Gray" is the color of choice right now at Tri-County.
Jacob Goede has been fast so far in every practice session.
Sean Murphy's SS/GreenLight Racing #32.