OSWEGO, NY – A total of 10 race cars clocked official times during Tuesday night’s Budweiser Classic Week test session at Oswego Speedway with Stephen Gioia III and Jason Simmons topping the charts in Supermodified and Small Block Super hot laps.
Gioia was sporting a new engine in the No. 9, owned by former Oswego Speedway Supermodfied car owner Ed LaPrade. Struggling with low horsepower all season long, the Gioia team struck a deal to run the LaPrade engine just before the richest and most prestigious Supermodified race in the world.
Late in the Tuesday session, Gioia ran the quickest lap of the night at a 17.027 at just over 132 mph. With a solid power plant under the hood, Gioia is now confident he and his team can work out the handling on the Gioia roadster before ‘Fast 14’ time trials on Friday night.
Brian Sweeney clocked in the second fastest Supermodified time of the night with a 17.045 in the No. 3 machine. After an incident in testing last season, Sweeney is poised to qualify for his first International Classic this season in just over a decade.
Michael Barnes was the third fastest driver on the Speedway Tuesday, after running just nine laps in the Mike Murphy No. 60. Barnes was shaking the car down for Independence, Ohio, shoe Tim Jedrzejek, who will be in the car come ‘Fast Friday.’
Despite not fitting in the car comfortably, Barnes was able to rip off several laps in the 17.1 second bracket with a best lap of 17.114.
Brandon Bellinger was the fourth fastest Supermodified on Tuesday in the No. 02 with a lap of 17.410.
Jason Simmons led the charts in Small Block Super testing, driving the No. 98. Simmons cracked a best lap of 19.250, as he looks to play as one of the favorites for the Small Block Super fast time award during ‘Super 6’ time trials on Friday night.
Steve Abt was back behind the wheel of the Four Sevens No. 67 Tuesday, and will drive the machine come Classic Weekend. Dave Cliff, scheduled to drive the car, will have to sit out the weekend due to work commitments.
Abt turned the second fastest SBS lap of the night with a circuit of 19.413.
Returning driver Bryan Haynes was third fastest in the No. 86 racer. Haynes, who traveled from Maryland to be a part of the weekend, turned a lap of 19.489 in his SBS return to the Speedway.
Mark Castiglia, Cameron Rowe, and Tim Barbeau rounded out the SBS times on Tuesday evening.
Individual seating is available for all three days of Budweiser International Classic Weekend, with three-day ticket packages also available.
Three-day general admission seating is $105, with three-day reserved seating set at $115, and three-day pit passes for $125.
Kids 5 and under are free throughout all of Budweiser International Classic Weekend with three-day child admission for kids 6-16 available for only $35.
Budweiser International Classic Weekend will kickoff on Friday with Corr/Pak Merchandising ‘Fast Friday’ featuring Budweiser International Classic ‘Fast 14’ Novelis Supermodified time trials, Bud Light SBS Classic ‘Super 6’ Pathfinder Bank Small Block Super time trials, and the RoC Modified 100.
A full day of practice begins on Friday at 11:30 a.m. with Small Block Super ‘Super 6’ time trials hitting the Speedway at 6 p.m. followed immediately by Supermodified ‘Fast 14’ time trials at 6:30 p.m.
Classic Weekend’s Bud Light ‘Super Saturday’ will feature the final round of the ‘Steel Palace’ ISMA Super Series with the Bud Light ISMA Super Nationals, as well as the Bud Light SBS Classic 75, and the ATQMRA TQ Midget Classic.
Grandstands open at 3 p.m. on Saturday with qualifying getting under way at 5 p.m.
Budweiser International ‘Classic Sunday’ will see grandstand gates open at 9:30 a.m. and second round Supermodified time trials take to the Speedway at noon.
The 58th annual Budweiser International Classic 200 is expected to take the green flag at 3 p.m.
To purchase tickets for Budweiser International Classic Weekend and the 58th annual Budweiser International Classic 200, call the Speedway’s box office today at (315) 342-0646.
The Speedway’s box office will be open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. each week day leading up to Classic Weekend for ticket sales.
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Budweiser Classic Week Supermodified Testing (Tuesday):
1. 9 – Stephen Gioia III: 17.027
2. 3 – Brian Sweeney: 17.045
3. 60 – Michael Barnes: 17.114
4. 02 – Brandon Bellinger: 17.410
Budweiser Classic Week SBS Testing (Tuesday):
1. 98 – Jason Simmons: 19.250
2. 67 – Steve Abt: 19.413
3. 86 – Bryan Haynes: 19.489
4. 69 – Mark Castiglia: 19.524
5. 77 – Cameron Rowe: 19.535
6. 87 – Tim Barbeau: 19.600