A beautiful afternoon turned into another thrilling night of racing action at Midvale Speedway, this past Saturday, May 28. The McIntosh Oil Company Late Models and Summit Racing Economy Modifieds ran 50-lap special events, while the Pure Stocks and Compact classes also raced.
Brad Channell and Rick Sibila led the 16-car Late Model field to the green with Channell going out front and Sibila struggling with handling problems. Last week's top qualifier, Bob Schneider, Jr. took the second spot moments later and started to hound the race leader. After a lap three restart, Schneider became the leader and built up a comfortable leader. However, on lap 10, the Barnhill, Ohio driver got sideways coming off of turn two and point leader Bubba Smith raced to the outside lane. Smith assumed the point and it was his turn to build up a lead. From lap five to lap 35, the race ran green and Smith worked through lap traffic while maintaining his lead position. The field was bunched up on lap 35 but no one mounted a serious challenge for the 2009 champion. The final 15 laps went green and the North Canton, Ohio driver picked up his second win in-a-row in the Smith's Auto Sales/Finish Line Motors #12. Rich Marcum continued the great start to his season with a runner-up finish, 1.8 seconds behind the winner. Marcus Malcuit made his debut with a third, while Ron Jaberg, Jr. continued to hang around the top five and finished fourth as the final car on the lead lap. Derek Grewell was fifth, while Gene Molnar, Jr., Channell, Emerson Huffman, Schneider, who couldn't get his car to re-fire after a yellow, and Doug McMillen completed the top ten. Schneider and Grewell won the heats, while Rich Marcum set fast time.
The Summit Racing Economy Modifieds already has put together a solid field in its first season of racing. 14 cars lined up for the green flag in the 50-lap feature event. Adam Stewart and Alex Rosenberry brought the field to the green with Kevin McClintock and Tom Garbrandt in row two. Stewart took the lead at the start, while McClintock moved into the second spot. After a restart on lap three, McClintock took the top spot via the outside lane. The yellow waved again moments later, which gave McClintock the bottom lane for the restart. The Dover, Ohio driver never gave up that lane and the car was bolted coming off of the turns. In a race that saw a number of cautions, McClintock had to hold off top qualifier Dave Dobbins and former Late Model champion Ryan Tedesco on a lot of double file restarts. The veteran driver was able to get the job done and went on to claim his second feature win of the early season. Following the Blick Tool & Die/Glass Lumber #38 were Dobbins, Tedesco, Scott Archer, and Mark Willison, Jr. Others in the top ten were Stewart, Lee McCreery, Mike Martin, Doug Higgins, and Bill Burkholder. McClintock and Burkholder won the heats.
The 15-lap Pure Stock feature was a thriller. Brian Minard and Rob Scott led the field during the first couple of laps, but on the move was defending point champion Teddy Oliver. The Canton, Ohio driver was looking for his second win in-a-row and looked destined for it as he took the lead on lap three. A caution came out with two laps to go, which created a double file restart. During that caution period, Oliver stopped by the finish line to tell track officials that he thought someone was leaking fluid as he was sliding on the previous green flag run. When the field went back to green, it was Oliver's #49 sliding sideways through the corners and Minard trying to pull off the surprising win. As the cars raced off of turn four to the checkered, both slid high toward the outside retaining wall. At the line, Minard claimed his first feature win of the year by .1 second over Oliver, Corey Evey, Scott, and TJ Barker. Scott and Don Boron, Jr. finished but had tore up race cars as they grinded along the frontstretch. The Deals on Wheels/Oliver's Garage #51 was also followed in the top ten by Boron, Vince Martin, Noah Osborne, Jesse Patterson, and Josh Flesher. Oliver and Minard won the heats, while Martin set fast time.
Tye Kelly led the first three laps of the Outlaw Compact feature before point leader John McNutt assumed the point. McNutt, who won the first two feature events, seems to have everything going his way early this season. One lap after taking the lead, McNutt had his biggest challenger this season, Kyle Grove, move into the second spot. One week ago, McNutt opened up the bottom lane and Grove took the lead from him only to have a wheel fall off a few laps later. McNutt wasn't about to make the same mistake and open the bottom lane in the second corner on this Saturday night. Grove tried high, Grove tried low, but in the end, McNutt came away with his third feature win in as many tries. Following the Dennison Yard/Jimmy Martin sponsored #35 were Grove, Max McCartney, Jesse Page, and Rich Dunlap. Tye Kelly, Ashlee Page, Jimmy Orr, Rusty Rouse, and Mike Swaney were top ten finishers. Grove and Kelly won the heats, while McCartney was quickest in qualifying.
For the first time, the new small oval at Midvale Speedway was utilized. On this night, it was the Stock Compacts giving it a try. Though most thought it would be impossible to run side-by-side or make a pass, the racing was actually pretty entertaining. Allen Clark took the lead from his front row starting position and led the first five laps as his competitors shuffled behind him. Clark's chance for a feature win came to an end on lap six, though, as he broke out of his qualifying time and was black flagged. That gave the lead to Dan Buckey. On the final circuits, youngster Braden Swaney drove to the high lane and looked to have a great chance to pull off the victory. Going into turn three, Swaney tried to close the door but Buckey was still just to the inside. He locked up his brakes, the two made contact, both steered out of it and raced to the checkered. At the finish, it was Buckey claiming his first feature win of the season in his Eastern Ohio Sports Complex/Buckey Mowing #50, while Swaney came home second. Kohlten Bryan crossed the line third in his P.T. Cruiser but the finish was disallowed because of heated springs. That gave Colton Cottis, Charles Storesina, and Clark top five finishes. Swaney won the heat and set fast time.
Crowds and racing have exceeded expectations early this season. The 2011 campaign will continue this coming Saturday, June 4 with this season's edition of autograph night. At intermission, all of the cars and drivers will come onto the speedway and fans will be allowed to go look at the cars up close and get their share of autographs. Track chaplain Phil Chalmers will be passing out an autograph program to the kids with pictures of the cars and drivers, a great piece to get signed.
Late Models, Economy Modifieds, Pure Stocks, Outlaw Compacts, and Stock Compacts will race, plus the third Spectator Drag qualifier.
Pit gates open at 2:00, hotlaps and grandstands at 3, qualifying at 4:45, and racing action at 6:30. Grandstand admission is $12 for adults, $10 for seniors 62+, $8 for kids 6-15, and children 5 and under are free.
More information may be found at www.midvalespeedway.com.
Results For Midvale Speedway
McIntosh Oil Company Late Models
Top Qualifier - Rich Marcum 14.532
Heat #1 - Bob Schneider, Jr., Bryant Smith, Bubba Smith, Ron Jaberg, Jr., Rich Marcum
Heat #2 - Derek Grewell, Mike Bowers, Jonathan Reitter, Brad Channell, Rick Sibila
Feature - Bubba Smith, Rich Marcum, Marcus Malcuit, Ron Jaberg, Jr., Derek Grewell, Gene Molnar, Jr., Brad Channell, Emerson Huffman, Bob Schneider, Jr., Doug McMillen, Jonathan Reitter, Bryant Smith, Bob Eichel, Mike Bowers, Rick Sibila, Rich Dessecker
Summit Racing Economy Modifieds
Top Qualifier - Dave Dobbins 14.995 Heat #1 - Kevin McClintock, Scott Archer, Dave Dobbins, Ryan Tedesco, Mark Willison, Jr. Heat #2 - Bill Burkholder, Mike Martin, Joe Ujcich, Doug Higgins, Lee McCreery Feature - Kevin McClintock, Dave Dobbins, Ryan Tedesco, Scott Archer, Mark Willison, Jr., Adam Stewart, Lee McCreery, Mike Martin, Doug Higgins, Bill Burkholder, Alex Rosenberry, Randy Smart, Tom Garbrandt, Joe Ujcich
Midvale Speedway Pure Stocks
Top Qualifier - Vince Martin 16.930 Heat #1 - Teddy Oliver, Vince Martin, Rob Scott, TJ Barker, Corey Evey Heat #2 - Brian Minard, Josh Flesher, Noah Osborne, Jesse Patterson Feature - Brian Minard, Teddy Oliver, Corey Evey, Rob Scott, TJ Barker, Don Boron, Jr., Vince Martin, Noah Osborne, Jesse Patterson, Josh Flesher, George Bowers
Midvale Speedway Outlaw Compacts
Top Qualifier - Max McCartney 17.765 Heat #1 - Kyle Grove, Rich Dunlap, John McNutt, Jesse Page, Max McCartney Heat #2 - Tye Kelly, Blaine Salsberry, Ashlee Page, Jimmy Orr, Rusty Rouse Feature - John McNutt, Kyle Grove, Max McCartney, Jesse Page, Rich Dunlap, Tye Kelly, Ashlee Page, Jimmy Orr, Rusty Rouse, Mike Swaney
Midvale Speedway Stock Compacts
Top Qualifier - Braden Swaney 16.645 Heat - Braden Swaney, Dan Buckey, Waylon Orr, Charles Storesina, Colton Cottis Feature - Dan Buckey, Braden Swaney, Colton Cottis, Charles Storesina, Allen Clark