Andrews Dominates Bruising Small Block Super Feature at Oswego

By – Chris Porter
Photos – Jim Feeney

Mexico’s Jay Andrews led all 35 laps en route to the feature win Saturday night at the Oswego Speedway. Originally slated to start on the outside of the second row, a string of opening lap accidents eventually promoted him to the point. Once the race finally got rolling, Andrews took full advantage and simply sped away for his third career win.

JJ Andrews stands atop the starter's stand with checkered flag in hand after winning Saturday night's small block supermodified race at Oswego.
JJ Andrews stands atop the starter’s stand with checkered flag in hand after winning Saturday night’s small block supermodified race at Oswego.

The pilot of the “Team Tapout” Jason Simmons-owned No. 93 became the seventh different winner of the year in the small block supermodified division.

Listen toJJ Andrews

Originally, Scott Shafer and Mike Bruce led the 25-car field to the green to begin the 35-lap event. However, as the duo traded blows up front the field jammed up behind them heading into the third turn. Reacting to Jeremy Pitcher getting crossed-up, the field scattered for racing room behind him. Of the half-dozen small blocks involved, Jack Patrick’s No. 9 received the heaviest damage. After catching a wheel, the No. 9 car was launched into the outside wall, driver’s side first. The hard-luck season continued for the Fulton native.

Listen toJack Patrick

The complete restart found Shafer and Bruce bouncing off of one another, once again. However, as Bruce’s No. 22 began to inch out ahead of Shafer’s No. 76, the two cars touched. The result was a parking lot in turn No. 2. All but 11 cars were forced into the pits. Though, most of those that didn’t pull in for repair still received some sort of damage.

Both, Shafer and Bruce offered up their take on what happened.

Listen toMike Bruce

Listen toScott Shafer

Dalton Doyle, Cameron Rowe, Greg O’Connor and Andrew Schartner all exited via the hook. Receiving the worst of it was North Carolina invader, Schartner. Like Patrick, Schartner’s luck has been anything but kind in 2013. Not only was his No. 18 machine in bad shape after the accident, the driver was a little shaken as well.

Listen toAndrew Schartner

With zero laps completed, a single-file restart was ordered from the officials tower. Having received both front and rear damage, but not having pitted for repair, Andrews would lead the remnants of the original field to the green.

Finally, the field was able to complete its maiden lap. AJ Bernys, Chris Proud, Pitcher and Russ Brown chased Andrews across the stripe.

Proud dove under Bernys between turns one and two, taking over second place. However, as the Andrews No. 93 raced its way towards the 10th lap, Proud would find keeping up with the race leader a losing cause.

Five lengths behind Bernys, Pitcher, Brown, Kreig Heroth and Dan Abt were fighting hard for fourth. Brown and Heroth powered under Pitcher’s No. 14 on the 10th lap. Half of a circuit later, Abt would do the same.

At the halfway mark, Andrews found himself catching the tail-end of the field. His lead would continue to grow.

Brown caught and began to press Bernys for third on the 19th lap. While Andrews was diving into lapped traffic, Brown maneuvered his way around Bernys’ No. 24. The rear of Proud’s No. 3 would soon start drawing nearer.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Nearly a full stretch behind the race leader, Proud, Brown and Bernys entered lapped traffic on the 25th lap. Two trips later, Brown took to the high side of Proud. Pinning him behind Dennis Rupert’s lapped No. 99 car, Brown won over second place. With just a handful of laps remaining and Andrews a full straightaway ahead of him, Brown would need the caution flag to fall if he were to have any chance at challenging for the lead.

On the 31st lap, he got his wish. A simple spin by Bruce’s No. 22 slowed the field and set the stage for a five-lap dash to the finish. Andrews would lose a four second advantage over Brown.

However, with Brown’s No. 13 planted firmly on the rear bumper of the No. 93, Andrews would hold his ground. Building up a three-car advantage two laps into green flag session, Brown was never able to mount a bid for the race lead. Taking the white flag with a five-car advantage, Andrews cruised the final five-eighths of a mile to earn the win.

Series points leader, Brown, brought the Ray Hedger-owned No. 13 home in second. The Mannsville native was able to pad his slim points lead.

Listen toRuss Brown

Hitting his first top-five finish of 2013, Brewerton’s Proud landed his No. 3 in third.

Listen toChris Proud

Getting his first top-five finish since winning earlier this season, Oswego’s Bernys finished in fourth.

Listen toAJ Bernys

Driving the Doug Soucy-owned Heroth Motorsports No. 04 to a fifth-place finish, was Fort Plain’s Heroth.

Listen toKreig Heroth

Rookie, Dan Abt drove the Four Sevens Motorsports No. 57 to a sixth-place finish. The Syracusan remains in second place to Pitcher for 2013 Rookie of the Year honors.

Listen toDan Abt

Volney’s Simmons raced his Team Tapout No. 98 to a seventh-place finish. It was his seventh top-10 run of the season.

Listen toJason Simmons

Pitcher, Mike Bond and Tim Gareau filled out to top 10 finishers.

The SBS Racing Series returns to the Oswego Speedway on Friday night for a special 50-lap feature as part of the 63rd running of the Sunoco Race of Champions weekend event. Qualifying heats begin at 6:15pm.

Pathfinder Bank SBS 35-Lap Feature: 1. JJ Andrews (93), 2. Russ Brown (13), 3. Chris Proud (3), 4. AJ Bernys (24), 5. Kreig Heroth (04), 6. Dan Abt (57), 7. Jason Simmons (98), 8. Jeremy Pitcher (14), 9. Mike Bond (74), 10. Tim Gareau (17), 11. David LaTulip (27), 12. Rob Humphries (07), 13. Jon Tesoriero (47), 14. Zach Amo (44), 15. Dennis Rupert (99), 16. Mike Bruce (22), 17. Cameron Rowe (77), 18. Scott Shafer (76), 19. Anthony Losurdo (1), 20. Dalton Doyle (01), 21. Rob Pullen (2), 22. Andrew Schartner (18), 23. Jack Patrick (9), 24. Mark Castiglia (67), 25. Greg O’Connor (90)

Heat #1: 1. Bruce (22), 2. Shafer (76), 3. Bernys (24), 4. Pitcher (8), 5. Heroth (04), 6. Patrick (9), 7. Bond (74), 8. O’Connor (90), 9. Castiglia (67)

Heat #2: 1. Andrews (93), 2. Proud (3), 3. Simmons (98), 4. Schartner (18), 5. Losurdo (1), 6. Abt (57), 7. Rupert (99), 8. LaTulip (27), 9. Gareau (17)

Heat #3: 1. Tesoriero (47), 2. Doyle (01), 3. Pullen (2), 4. Brown (13), 5. Rowe (77), 6. Humphries (07), 7. Amo (44), DNS – 8. Josh Kerr (8)