OSWEGO, NY – Budweiser International Classic Weekend continues on September 1 with Bud Light Night at the ‘Steel Palace’ as the Pathfinder Bank SBS Series, the ISMA Supermodifieds, and the ATQMRA TQ Midgets battle for Classic gold.
Pit gates will open on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. with warm-ups beginning at 3:30 p.m.
Grandstand admission will also open at 3:30 p.m. with hot laps.
The practice sessions will be very limited and rotate until approximately 4:30 p.m.
The evening’s qualifying will begin at 5 with ISMA Supermodified Bud Light SuperNationals time trials. TQ midget heats, the Bud Light SBS Classic consi, and ISMA Supermodified heats will follow.
Saturday night will mark the 21st running of the Bud Light SBS Classic 60 for the Pathfinder Bank SBS Series at Oswego Speedway. Reduced from 100 laps to 60 green flag laps in 2012, the event is sure to be a can’t miss as each and every lap will prove pivotal in the race for the $2,200 top prize.
Several drivers could be considered as possible winners of the annual Classic event, but a few favorites push toward the top of the list.
Kreig Heroth, Rob Pullen, Mark Castiglia, and Cameron Rowe each have multiple wins this season in the SBS division. Heroth went to victory lane in the final two events of the year, claiming the 2012 Speedway track championship in the No. 04. In a bit of a changeup, Rowe will be piloting a brand new chassis out of the FFB stables as No. 74 in the Classic. The machine saw some test time at the Speedway on Tuesday night and was fast right out of the box, running consistent times in the 19.3 second range.
With Rowe vacating his normal seat in the No. 77 prior to Classic, it looks as though former 2-time SBS Classic winner Dave Cliff may be behind the wheel of that machine come qualifying night on Friday.
Mike Bond, JJ Andrews, AJ Bernys, and Andrew Schartner join those above as feature winners during the 2012 regular season campaign.
Schartner of course is the defending champion of the Bud Light SBS Classic and looks to defend his title in ’12. Schartner’s one win this season just happened to come on Race of Champions Weekend in a 50-lap main event, the closest race in nature to the 60-lap Classic go.
Bond is a 3-time winner of the SBS Classic, looking to return to victory lane for the first time since 2009 in the No. 26. The Mexico driver crashed out of last year’s Classic main and hopes to bounce back in grand fashion in 2012.
Bernys has Classic finishes of 13th and 15th in his previous two starts, but after a win in the Mr. Pathfinder Bank SBS event in August, the young driver has renewed confidence behind the wheel of the No. 24.
Andrews, like Bond, dropped out early in the 2011 running of the SBS Classic but had finishes of fourth and seventh in 2009 and 2010 in No. 93. Despite not having a win in the Classic Andrews is one of the more prolific drivers in the history of the event. He ranks third in All-Time Classic points behind only Bond and Russ Brown.
Ranking toward the top of the favorites who have not won in 2012 have to be Brown, Jason Simmons, Jack Patrick, and Tim Barbeau.
Brown came to the Speedway just weeks ago with a brand new No. 13 Hedger Fabrication Chassis, and like Rowe, was immediately fast in his new machine. Brown, a 3-time winner of the Classic, had a runner-up finish on track championship night at the Speedway on August 18 and looks to be on point heading into the big one.
Simmons, who has yet to win a feature event in the SBS division, took fourth in the final championship standings driving the No. 98. Simmons hopes to join Fred Taylor (1994), Jeremy Unruh (1997), and Craig Rayvals (2001) as drivers to win their first feature event at Oswego in the Classic.
Patrick knocked on the door of a win several times in 2012 behind the wheel of the No. 9 mount. Riding seventh on the All-Time SBS Classic point list, Patrick finished fourth in last year’s Classic main and looks primed to advance that position in ’12.
Barbeau took sixth in the 2011 Classic driving the No. 50, but he returns this season behind the wheel of No. 79. Barbeau is ranked 13th on the All-Time SBS point list, but has never had a Top 5 finish in the event and looks to reverse that fortune this season. With a seventh place finish in the final point chase, and several top runs, Barbeau certainly has the speed to contend for a victory.
Joining the SBS Series on Saturday night with a main event will be the always fast and exciting Bud Light ISMA Winged SuperNationals. Saturday’s event will mark the 19th running of the SuperNationals on Classic Weekend, which saw Bentley Warren win the inaugural event back on September 3, 1994 over Dave Simard and Mike Ordway.
ISMA has already been to the ‘Steel Palace’ once this season with Oswego Supermodified regular King Dave Gruel IV earning an immensely popular win for longtime car owner Steve Miller in the Sweet 16. Gruel out-gunned Johnny Benson Jr., Charlie Schultz, Lou Cicconi and Tim Jedrzejek for the electric King of Wings victory.
Last season’s SuperNationals was highlighted with Chris Perley’s dominating performance, which saw him come from the tail of the field after an early spin to go on and win by a six second margin over Tim Ice. Joey Scanlon, Mike Lichty, and Paul White, driving the Miller Sweet 16, finished the Top 5 in 2011.
So far in 2012, Lichty leads the ISMA series standings by a 49-point margin over Cicconi. Timmy Jedrzejek, who won the 2012 Sandusky Hy-Miler Nationals in the Soule No. 32, is only 10-points back of Cicconi with Benson and Jeff Locke completing the Top 5 in the standings.
ISMA competitors Jedrzejek, Benson, Locke, and Craig Rayvals are all currently entered to pull double duty on the weekend competing in both the SuperNationals on Saturday and the International Classic 200 on Sunday.
Jedrzejek will look to qualify the Strong Racing No. 98 in the Classic field on Sunday, while Benson will be behind the wheel of the Graham Racing No. 11 Hawk chassis. Rayvals will once again be inside of a Mike Muldoon chassis for the Classic as Locke will bring his own machine, a former John Nicotra Hawk Supermodified.
The ATQMRA TQ Midgets will take to the inside Speedway at the ‘Steel Palace’ on Saturday in the Bud Light TQ Midget Classic 25 in honor of Joe Payne Sr. Alison Cumens was the big winner of the event just one year ago, joining Star Matteson as only the second female feature winner in Oswego Speedway’s 62-year history.
Alison will be joined in 2012 by her brother, Ian, who won the NEMA Lites main event at the Speedway just one week ago.
Other top competitors in the TQ Midget field include Joey Payne Jr., Ray Sand Jr., Buddy Sload, Jon Gambuti and Ryan Tidman. The night’s TQ racing is also scheduled to include a special TQ/Supermodified shootout featuring drivers Alison Cumens, who will attempt the International Classic driving for Ray Graham, Payne, Lou Cicconi, Gambuti, Tidman, and Sload.
Tickets are on sale now for Budweiser International Classic Weekend through the Oswego Speedway box office, located just outside of the main pit gate at the Speedway. To order tickets over the phone be sure to call (315) 342-0646. Box office hours are Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Three day adult general admission passes are $104, while reserved three day admissions are $115. Three day kids’ admission, ages 6-16, is $35, while children ages 5 and under are FREE for the weekend.
Individual day general admission prices are as follows: Friday – $25, Saturday – $42, and Sunday – $52.
Oswego Speedway events run May through September on most Saturday nights, culminating with the Fall Championship 75 on September 15.
For more information on Oswego Speedway be sure to visit www.oswegospeedway.com. You can also LIKE the (Official) Oswego Speedway page at facebook.com/OswegoSpeedway, or FOLLOW on Twitter @OswegoSpeedway. To purchase tickets or order merchandise please call the Speedway box office at (315) 342-0646.