51's Grassroots Racing Recap
Who Has Torn Up The Weekly Short Tracks This Week?
Compiled From Various Track PR Reports
Updated - Monday, October 26th, 10:30am ET

Sunday Races:

Sundance Vacations Speedway (PA) - Despite a spin during the early going, Jarrod Hayes of Calverton, NY Patiently waited for the right moment and then moved from third to first with four laps remaining to take the North East Late Model Association (NELMA) Late Model Challenge win Sunday at Sundance Vacations Speedway. Joe Barbush of Drums, PA edged his brother Brad to the Street Stock Fender Fury event and Jason Palmer of Berlin, CT took top honors in the Legends Fall Classic.

Late Model drivers raced the clock during time trials prior to the start of the 100-lap main event and Kevin Metzger peeled off the quickest lap. A redraw followed and the invert put Jerry Hildebrand on the pole position for the show.

Hildebrand set the early pace over Jarrod Hayes, Larry Fisher, Mike Coll and Kevin Metzger. The first of several yellows waved when Metzger spun in turns three and four.

A successful restart was essential for the front-runners. Hildebrand got a good jump over Hayes. Meanwhile, Coll and L. Fisher rubbed fenders and doors as the duo battled for third. L. Fisher encountered a handling issue and headed pit side during the next caution.

Travis Fisher overtook Hayes for the second spot on a lap 13 restart. Hayes began to fade and looped his machine in turn four on lap 37.

The competition yellow flew on lap 50. The short period enabled drivers to re-fuel for the second 50-lap run. Hildebrand led at the break over T. Fisher, Coll, Dave Macomber and Mike Sweeney.

Green flag racing resumed and T. Fisher wasted no time and took the top spot from Hildebrand. Meanwhile, Zane Zeiner came to life and charged toward the top five.

It appeared that T. Fisher might run away with the race win but that was all about to change following a lap 80 caution that involved a multi-car tangle in turn one. The drivers involved were Sweeney, Francis Gross III, Scott Wylie, Metzger and Will Schneider.

Green flag racing resumed and Zeiner shot by Hildebrand. He hounded T. Fisher for the race lead and got to the bottom of the leader with four laps remaining. In typical NELMA fashion, T. Fisher tried to hold his line and Zeiner in the process. The two finally tangled in three and four and as Hayes shot underneath and into the race lead, Hildebrand and Coll got a piece of the melee but continued to hold their positions.

Uncontested, Hayes drove off to his second career NELMA Late Model Challenge Victory over Coll, Hildebrand, Mike Mortimer and Wylie.

Coastal 181 sponsored the event and Hayes was presented with the first-ever Coastal 181 cup.

Joe Barbush timed quickest for the 50-lap Street Stock Fender Fury and started fourth after the redraw. Richie DiMarco led the field of Street Stocks to the drop of the green flag and was overtaken by Kevin Orlando before a lap was complete.

DiMarco held the second spot in the early going, followed by J. Barbush, Chip Wanamaker and Brad Barbush.

Orlando began to experience a flat tire and lost the race lead to DiMarco on lap 23. J. Barbush moved to second with brother Brad in tow.

DiMarco appeared to have the race win sealed but that all changed for the worse on lap 33.

While trying to lap Cory Swartz in turn four, DiMarco was forced to the high side of the track and got caught up in the “loose stuff”. He spun, which gave the lead to J. Barbush.

Uncontested over the remaining laps, J. Barbush grabbed the special win over his brother, Brad. Robert Fink finished a solid third over Orlando and DiMarco put on a late race charge to finish in fifth.

Lehigh Valley Grand Pix sponsored the Street Stock Fender Fury.

Following heat races that were won by Scott Hubler, Jason Palmer and Johnnie Gloor IV, the Legend cars took to the speedway for the 35-lap WPW Equipment Rental Fall Legends Classic.

Prior to the start f the event, the top ten starters were inverted, which put Brandon Michael on the pole.

Justin Grimm overtook Michael before a lap was scored and then Karl Heisler took the lead a lap later.

Heisler fell off the pace for a moment on the third circuit and Gloor took command with Mike Alcaro in second.

Alcaro attempted to drive underneath the leader in turn one on lap six, but made contact and spun Gloor. The incident also collected Kevin Nowak and Jason Sendlewski. The change of events gave the race lead to Mark Tischler.

Tischler held the lead until Cameron Patrick on lap 14 overtook him. With 10 laps remaining, Palmer made the race-winning pass on the leader.

Palmer went on to take the checkers in the exciting event over Patrick, Hubler, Roger Coss and Alcaro.

Thompson International Speedway (CT) - What a difference a day makes. After a rain soaked Saturday, the skies were crystal clear making the way for eleven feature events for the culmination of the XtraMart World Series of Speedway Racing on Sunday, October 25, 2009. Drivers from all over the northeast competed with winning drivers coming from five different states in New England.

Ted Christopher of Plainville, CT, book-ended the season with Thompson Speedway victories in the Whelen Modified Tour. The veteran racer opened the season with a victory in the Icebreaker and capped off the 2009 season with a World Series win. Donny Lia secured the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour championship with his fourth-place finish.

A last lap pass found Chris Perley of Rowley, MA, in International Supermodified Association (ISMA) victory lane. Nokie Fornoro of Stroudsburg, PA, scored the Northeastern Midget Association 30-lap main event to send his retiring car owner out in grand style.

Ronnie Silk of Norwalk, CT, came out on top of a fierce Sunoco Modified battle to score the World Series win. In racing of the Late Model variety it was Mike O’Sullivan of Springfield, MA, scoring the Super Late Models victory; his brother Tommy made it a family affair winning the Late Models. Rick Gentes of Woonsocket, RI, continued his domination of the Outlaw Late Models with a dominating performance.

Other winners included Larry Barnett of Moosup, CT, in the Limited Sportsman; Sean Foster of Middletown, CT, in the Outlaw Strictly Stocks; and Beth Adams of Winchendon, CT, in Outlaw Mini Stocks. Rob Richardi, Jr. of North Easton, MA, was tops in the Pro-Four Modifieds.

Saturday Races:

Orange Show Speedway (CA) - The Gundersons of Maple Valley, Wash., made the Lucas Oil/Pick-A-Part Outlaw Figure 8 West Coast Championships a family affair Saturday night.

Nick Gunderson won the 200-lap, $25,000 affair at Orange Show Speedway and his father, Brian Gunderson, teamed with Bill Wade to finish second, one lap behind the winner and 17 laps ahead of third-place Jerry Toporek, of Venice, Calif.

Those finishes were worth a total of $11,600 to the Gunderson-Wade combine. Nick got $7,500 for the victory, Brian shared the $3,500 runner-up prize with Wade and both got $300 in tow money to partially reimburse them for making the 1,200-mile trip. Toporek took home $2,500 for third.

The race, which was placed on the schedule only about eight weeks ago, brought Best in the West Racing’s inaugural season at the ASA-sanctioned quarter-mile to a close, and about 4,500 spectators were on hand to see it.

Unfortunately, the late addition of the race, the depressed economy, indirect interference by a nearby track and what West Coast organizer Rod Proctor said at the drivers’ meeting was “too much faith” in other racing organizations combined to keep the entry list from reaching the hoped-for level of 20 cars or more. Then a myriad of mechanical problems befell many of those who were in attendance.

Corey Turner, of Indianapolis, the only Midwest driver to make the trip, won the pole and led by more than 5 seconds before his motor broke on lap 41 of the opening segment. Engine maladies also struck Proctor, of Riverside, who took the lead when Turner broke, and Greg Scott, of Monroe, Wash., while Harry Kuenigger, of San Bernardino, was hampered by driveshaft problems.

There were 13 starters in the opening segment, which Nick Gunderson finished a lap ahead of his father, but only seven made an appearance for the second 100 laps, in which Toporek moved from fifth to third ahead of Proctor and Jay Henson, of Oak Hills, Calif.

Thompson International Speedway (CT) - After a valiant attempt at running day two of the World Series of Speedway Racing, the persistent and prolonged rain forced Thompson International Speedway to postpone the remaining schedule of events until Sunday, October 25, 2009.

Friday Races:

Atlanta Motor Speedway (GA) - Tonight's running of Atlanta Motor Speedway's Winter Flurry series has been cancelled due to inclement weather.

Atlanta Motor Speedway's Wintery Flurry will return on Nov. 20 for the second-scheduled contest of the six-date season.

To complete a full six-date schedule of points racing, the cancelled week one Winter Flurry races will likely be rescheduled as double features during a later Winter Flurry date.

Thompson International Speedway (CT) - Friday of the Thompson International Speedway XtraMart World Series of Speedway Racing is traditionally reserved for qualifying for a host of regular Thompson divisions and the always varied and exciting Outlaw divisions. In an effort to be proactive with a less than stellar forecast, Speedway Management decided to run feature events for the ARTS Truck Series, the SK Lights, TIS Modifieds, and Mini Stocks.

After post race technical inspection, John St. Germain of West Sand Lake, NY, was scored as the winner of the ARTS Trucks. Brit Anderson of Branford, CT, scored the victory in the SK Lights Modifieds. TIS Modified champion Brian Sullivan of S. Windsor, CT, put an exclamation point on his 2009 season with a victory at the World Series. Randy Churchill of Niantic, CT, continued his prowess in the Mini Stocks with a win.


The Speed51.com Grassroots Racing Recap showcases the winners of weekly racing events throughout the country in the headlining division(s) of local short tracks. 

If you represent a track and would like for your results to be considered for the report, please e-mail your track press releases and/or results to Twist@Speed51.com

Releases that are well-written and concise will be given priority.  Releases where the winners and divisions are mentioned in the opening lines are also much easier to incorporate into this feature and will stand a much better chance of being used.  Due to the number of short tracks across the country, we cannot guarantee that every track will get into the report every week, but we will do our best to showcase everyone we can.