By Dave Medler
FULTON, NY – Mike Bowman and Larry Wight had the fans on the edge of their seats Saturday night at the Fulton Speedway. Both Bowman and Wight not only raced each other but back markers throughout the last half of the race that saw Bowman pick up his first ever Tracey Road Equipment Big Block Modified win by 0.419 at the finish.
Other winners on RFH’s Hideaway, Hudson Dairy Night saw Tim Sears Jr. pick wins in the SUNY Canton Sportsman and NAPA Late Models, Joe Isabell Mod Lites, Ron Davis III E&V Energy Mod Lites and Keith Zirbel Four-Cylinder Stocks.
Mike Bowman out raced Chad Phelps to lead the opening lap of the 35 lap Tracey Road Equipment Big Block Modified Feature and immediately took off from the field running the top of the speedway.
With laps complete Bowman still was out front being chased by Larry Wight and Mike Mahaney, with Jim Witko and Billy Decker battling for fourth and fifth.
By lap 10 Bowman opened a half a straightaway lead as the rest of the top-five of Wight, Mahaney, Witko and Decker remained the same.
On lap 15 Bowman was on rails trying to runaway on the hide still using the cushion. Wight started using different grooves in an attempt to cut into the lead the leader built-up. Mahaney, Decker and now Jimmy Phelps showed in the top-five.
At the halfway point Wight was able to run Bowman down, cutting his lead down to just three car lengths with Mahaney, Decker and Phelps still showing on the scoring tower.
With 20 laps showing on the lap counter the race was on as Wight was now on Bowman’s back bumper as they started reeling in cars to put a lap down. Mahaney and Decker raced side by side for 2nd with Phelps right there.
Over the last 10 laps Bowman kept running a steady line on the top of the speedway while Wight tried the middle and the bottom of the speedway trying to find speed to get by or trap Bowman behind a back-marker. But Bowman never flinched as he was the first under the checkers by 0.419 at the finish. Alan Johnson came on late for 3rd with Mahaney and Decker rounding out the top-five.
After the feature Mike Mahaney was DQ’d for not reporting to the scales.
“I don’t even know what to say, we’ve tried for so long to just get one (win) period,” said an excited and relieved Mike Bowman after climbing out his Premier Yankee Window, Bowman Auto Repair, Klaben Nursery, No.16.” We have been in position so many times to win but just haven’t been able to capitalize. This year we’ve struggled, worse than we probably ever have up until this weekend, we threw some crazy stuff at the car this week. The guys have been working their butts off and it paid off.”
“I seen him, I didn’t know what 99 it was, I seen him two or three times,” Bowman said about his battle with Larry Wight.” I knew if I hit the top right each lap it would be tough to get by me. The only nervous part was the lapped traffic. With three to go I looked under Bresnahan to see if I could get him but I lost ground. I said were just going to stay on the top and let it work out the way that it will, it worked out perfect.”
Doug Cook, Michael Teachout and Bob Bennett led the early laps of the 20 lap SUNY Canton Sportsman Feature.. The story of the race was Tim Sears Jr. who started 18th grabbed the lead on lap 14 and cruised to the win. Jeremy Pitcher, Greg Kimball, Bob Bennett and John Juhl rounded out the top-five.
A fast field of NAPA Late Models signed in the pits on Saturday night. Just like the Sportsman Tim Sears Jr. was the class of the field taking the lead on lap 4 and was never seriously challenged the rest of the way. Dale Caswell, Sean Beardsley, Alan Fink and AJ Kingsley chased Sears across the line.
In the Mod Lite Feature Joe Isabell passed his brother Jeremy on lap 7 then went on to his second win of the year and maintained his point lead. Jamie King, Gary Jeffries, Jeremy Isabell and Ricky Yelle rounded out the top-five.
Ron Davis III picked up his second win of the year in the E&V Energy Novice Sportsman over Scott Ford, Kyle DeMetro, Jim Graham and CJ Castelletti.
During the week between the Gladiator competitors and the speedway staff it was agreed there would be a name change for the class. They will know be known as the Four Cylinder Stocks for the rest of the season and beyond.
In the Four Cylinder Stock Feature Keith Zirbel and Skip DeGroff put on an exciting race with Zirbel grabbing the narrow win at the checkers over DeGroff. Jerry Herbert, Mark Johnston and Eric M Zirbel finished third through fifth.
This coming Saturday June 25th Burke’s Do It Best Home Center, Carson’s Car Mart, Scotty’s Towing present Dig Safely New York promotional featuring the Tracey Road Equipment Big Block Modifieds, SUNY Canton Sportsman, NAPA Late Models, E&V Energy Novice Sportsman, Mod Lites and the Four Cylinder Stocks.
Gates will open at 5:00 with racing at 7:00. Adult grandstand admission will be $12 with everyone 18 years old and younger admitted free to the grandstand.
Don’t forget to follow Fulton Speedway on Facebook and on Twitter at twitter.com/Fultonspeedway. Brewerton Speedway is also active on both Facebook and Twitter at twitter.com/BrewertonSpdway). Please call Cory Reed at 315-668-6906 or [email protected] with any questions.
(TRACEY ROAD EQUIPMENT BIG BLOCK MODIFIEDS 35 LAPS) – MIKE BOWMAN, Larry Wight, Alan Johnson, Billy Decker, Jimmy Phelps, Dale Planck, Jim Witko, Pat Ward, Chuck Bower, Matt Fink, Ryan Phelps, Chris Hile, Mike Ward Steve Hulsizer, Chad Phelps, Roy Bresnahan, Tim Harris, Joe August Jr., Shane Donath, DQ – Mike Mahaney, DNS – Dan Vauter.
(SUNY CANTON SPORTSMAN 20 LAPS) – -TIM SEARS JR., Jeremy Pitcher, Gregg Kimball, Bob Bennett, John Juhl, Jordan Bennett, Gregg Carner, Tim Schneider, Doug Cook, Matt Emmons, Michael Teachout, Sean McCarthy, Christine Martin, John Wilbur, Joe Kline, Jason Occhino, Josh Blackwell, Greg Mrzywka, Billy Clark Jr., Dave Emmons, Katelyn Kane, Stewart Garrison, Sam Reakes.
(NAPA LATE MODELS 20 LAPS) – TIM SEARS JR., Dale Caswell, Sean Beardsley, Alan Fink, AJ Kingsley, Gus Schmidt, Bodie Bellinger, Scott Fowler, Steven Coit, Ryan Halliday, Brandon Kidd, Shayne Tenace, Dave Talbot, Mike Vaughn, Mike Ramose, Brandon Carvey.
(E&V ENERGY NOVICE SPORTSMAN 15 LAPS) – RON DAVIS III, Scott Ford, Kyle DeMetro, Jim Graham, CJ Castelletti, Devon Boyce, Sean Sommers, Derek Warren, Rick Donovan, DQ – Tony Finch II.
(MOD LITES 12 LAPS) – JOE ISABELL, Jamie King, Gary Jeffries, Jeremy Isabell, Ricky Yelle, Lowell Zehr, Justin Williams, Jeremy Isabell.
(FOUR CYLINDER STOCKS 15 LAPS) – KEITH ZIRBEL, Skip DeGroff, Jerry Herbert, Mark Johnston, Eric M Zirbel, Josh Zirbel, Roland Fiske, Colby Herzog, Jeff Warner.