OSWEGO, NY – As the International Supermodified Association season opener continues to draw closer at Oswego Speedway, the winged traveling series roster continues to grow with a mixture of returning vets and interesting new combinations for the coming season.
One of the most intriguing combinations that will debut at Oswego on May 3 will be the recent teaming of defending ISMA Supermodified champion Lou Cicconi with veteran car owner Clyde Booth.
Cicconi claimed the 2013 ISMA Supermodified championship by 70-markers over Ben Seitz, including a June 8 victory at Oswego, driving for another veteran owner in Vic Miller.
With Miller not committing to a full-time franchise commitment with ISMA in 2014, Cicconi now moves to the Booth No. 61 with the ‘Steel Palace’ first on his racing calendar with the ISMA series on May 3.
While Miller has not franchised for 2014, his team does intend on competing through the New England portion of the ISMA schedule including all four Shea Concrete ‘Steel Palace’ ISMA Super Series events at Oswego Speedway.
Chris Perley is expected to again be behind the wheel of the familiar No. 11 machine, looking to add win number nine to his career listing at the Speedway. Perley’s last win at Oswego came just one year ago, winning the 56-lap running of the inaugural ‘Irish’ Jack Murphy Memorial over Cicconi and Canadian Mark Sammut.
Mike Lichty was no doubt the ‘King’ of Oswego Speedway winged racing in 2013 earning the Shea Concrete ‘Steel Palace’ ISMA Super Series championship as well as victories in the King of Wings title event and the Bud Light ISMA Super Nationals on Budweiser Classic Weekend.
Lichty is again franchised for the 2014 ISMA Supermodified season and will again walk through Oswego’s steel gates on May 3. While victory lane will no doubt be in Licthy’s sights, he also plans to set aim on the Speedway’s track record of 14.972 seconds at 150.282 mph set by Dave Shullick Jr. last season.
Last year Lichty had the goal of becoming the first driver in the 14-second bracket at Oswego Speedway, but fell just short to Midwest rival Shullick. In race trim Lichty would go on to defeat Shullick on two occasions at the Speedway, with Shullick starting deeper in the starting field.
‘The Shoe 2’ will return to Oswego on May 3, looking to knock off Lichty and ISMA’s best, and return to Oswego victory lane for the first time since May 4, 2008.
Shullick now has two Jim Bodnar built Supermodifieds in his shop, looking not only to head to victory lane, but to lower his existing 14.972 track record circuit.
While Shullick and the Bodnar No. 94 have become the talk of winged Supermodified racing in the last year, the Ohio racing veteran also plans to run at the Home of Supermodifieds without a wing yet again, team with Otto Sitterly and John Nicotra.
Shullick plans to make his 2014 Novelis Supermodified debut on Memorial Day Weekend at the Speedway on May 24.
On ISMA’s returning list for 2014 is last season’s Rookie of the Year, Alison Cumens.
Cumens, who became the first woman driver to earn a top 5 finish in a Supermodified at Oswego during last year’s running of the Bud Light ISMA Super Nationals, will return to Oswego on May 3 driving the same No. 39 Vic Miller chassis.
The former TQ Midget racer ended her 2013 campaign in grand style with tremendous runs at both Oswego and Thompson International Speedways on her way to a 6th place finish in the final driver standings.
Joining the list of returning ISMA threats will be series runner-up Seitz in the Bien Racing No. 17. Seitz looks to debut a brand new Allegresso chassis in 2014 and continue his run of great finishes at Oswego, which includes a victory back on September 6, 2010.
Jeff Locke will also return weekly with ISMA in 2014 behind the wheel of his bright red No. 37 machine.
Locke, who ran sparingly with Oswego Speedway’s Novelis Supermodified division in 2013, will also field a non-wing Supermodified full-time for Randy Ritskes to compete with at Oswego in search of his first Speedway championship.
A newcomer to ISMA Supermodified racing and Oswego Speedway will be Ryan Gath, a graduate of 350-Supermodified racing at Lee Speedway.
Gath will be driving for Lane Racing in 2014, piloting the No. 97.
Other current franchise listed racers are Dan Bowes, Tim Ice, Sammut, Rob Summers and Eddie Witkum Jr.
ISMA’s deadline for franchise commitments is not until April 30.
Other drivers that have verbally committed join the ISMA regulars for the Oswego Speedway opener on May 3 include a new comer and a returning veteran.
Oswego Speedway’s 2013 Novelis Supermodified Rookie of the Year Tony Steiner will strap a wing on his Muldoon chassis No. 07 machine for the ‘Irish’ Jack Murphy Memorial. Steiner ended the 2013 season at Oswego 15th in the overall driver standings with one top 5 finish.
Steiner has never before competed with a winged Supermodified.
Expected to return to Supermodified racing in 2014 is veteran Keith Gilliam.
A longtime weekly Novelis Supermodified competitor with his No. 87 machine, Gilliam intends to run the Shea Concrete ‘Steel Palace’ ISMA Super Series at Oswego, staying close to home.
Gilliam looks to return to the ‘Steel Palace’ with the same Supermodified he has competed with in past seasons, most recently in 2012.
Two-time Oswego Speedway Novelis Supermodified main event winner Shaun Gosselin is also among the drivers looking to throw his hat into the ISMA ring at Oswego on May 3.
Gosselin, who surprised many with a 3rd place overall finish in the Novelis Supermodified driver standings at Oswego in 2013, is no stranger to winged racing.
Midwest Supermodified ace Moe Lilje is also expected to be on hand with the No. 08 Supermodified, which carried him to a top 5 finish at Oswego in June of last season.
On track activity begins at Oswego Speedway on April 26 with the annual open test session for all racing divisions.
Testing will run from 1-5 p.m. on April 26 and is free for spectators to sit in the main grandstand.
Racing action at the Speedway begins on May 3 with the 64th annual Gater Racing News Opening Night featuring the Shea Concrete ‘Steel Palace’ ISMA Super Series ‘Irish’ Jack Murphy Memorial 56 and the opening round of the Pathfinder Bank SBS Road to the Championship.
The Speedway’s flagship non-wing Novelis Supermodified division will kick-off its 53rd consecutive season of racing at the Home of Supermodifieds on May 10tpresented by Mitchell’s Speedway Press and Planet Fitness of Oswego.
Nearly 30 Novelis Supermodifieds are expected in be in action including defending champion Otto Sitterly, Indianapolis 500 veterans Joe Gosek and Davey Hamilton, and Novelis Supermodified Rookie of the Year contender Jessica Zemken.
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