LANCASTER, N.Y. — Mark Sammut of London, Ontario captured the 50-lap International Supermodified Association (ISMA) feature on Saturday night at Lancaster National Speedway. Sammut passed Michael Muldoon for the lead with 12 laps go to secure his second career Supermodified win at Lancaster.
In additional X-Press Signs Stock Car Series action, Andy Cryan of Buffalo won the 25-lap Advance Auto Parts Street Stock feature. Kevin Bainbridge of Amherst, N.Y. earned the victory in the 25-lap Roaming Buffalo 4-Cylinder feature. In the Can-Am TQ Midgets, Darren Dryden of Freelton, Ontario won the 25-lap main event.
A large crowd was on hand to see the ISMA Supers back at Lancaster following their triumphant return last season after 14 years. Dave Shullick, Jr. broke the track record he set last season during his heat race with a fast lap of 14.561 seconds with an average speed of almost 123 mph.
Dave McKnight and Michael Muldoon led the field of 17 ISMA Supers to the initial green flag for the 50-lap feature. Muldoon jumped out the early lead and quickly pulled away from the field.
Sammut started third and battled with McKnight early on for the runner-up position. He eventually took over second on lap 15, but Muldoon had built up an advantage of nearly five seconds on the track.
Shullick started 13th and had his work cut out for him as he tried to drive through the field to catch Sammut and Muldoon. He entered the top five just past halfway point of the race on lap 26. Shullick then took third place from McKnight on lap 36.
Muldoon continued to lead, but Sammut closed the gap to just over two seconds as the leader approached lapped traffic. Before Sammut could make up those final two seconds, he caught a break as the caution flag came out for the first and only time on lap 36 when Mike Lichty stopped on the track with a broken front end. This bunched the field up for a restart with 14 laps to go as Muldoon led Sammut and Shullick.
On lap 38, Sammut moved to the outside of Muldoon coming off of turn two and took the lead as the pair entered turn three. Shullick got by Muldoon three laps later to take second, and he then went after Sammut. Shullick chased Sammut for the final nine laps with both drivers running their fastest laps of the race during this time.
Sammut was able to protect the inside line and hold off Shullick to collect the win. It was his second career Supermodified win at Lancaster after an MSA Supermodified victory in 2009. It was also the seventh ISMA Supers win of his career.
Shullick finished second after earning the Hard Charger Award for coming from 13th to second. Dan Bowes of Epping, NH rounded out the top three finishers. Chris Perley came from the 11th starting position to finish fourth. Moe Lilje rounded out the top five. Muldoon dropped out of the race with mechanical issue shortly after giving up third to Shullick.
In the Advance Auto Parts Street Stock feature, Mark Hoch and Tommy Wentland battled from their front row starting positions at the drop of the green flag. Rich Sharpe started sixth and was looking for his third-straight win to start the season.
Sharpe caught Hoch for the lead on lap eight, but the pair made contact in turn two. This allowed Andy Cryan to drive by and take the lead. Sharpe recovered and chased Cryan down to take over first place on lap 13.
The yellow flag was displayed on lap 17 when Nate Straus developed a mechanical problem. Sharpe was forced to pit during the caution period for an unsafe bar protruding from the left front of the car. The pit stop by Sharpe handed the lead back to Cryan.
Sharpe drove back through the field after his pit visit. He caught Hoch and Nik Welshans going into turn three on lap 21 when the trio collided and plowed into the Thermal Foam.
Cryan held of Max Northem for the final four laps to score the victory. Dave Vona, Tim Welshans and Ken Maltby rounded out the top five.
Kevin Bainbridge passed Dave Milbrand, Jr. for the lead with seven laps to go to capture the Roaming Buffalo 4-Cylinder feature. Milbrand had led every lap from the pole until that point, and he had done a good job at protecting the bottom line through the first 17 laps. On the 18th circuit, Bainbridge squeezed between Milbrand and the inside retaining wall on the frontstretch to take over first.
Darren Dryden came from the fourth starting position to win the 25-lap Can-Am TQ Midget feature. Dryden passed pole sitter Brandon Zavarella for the lead with eight laps to go to score his second win of the Can-Am TQ season.
Adrian Stahle finished second with former Lancaster TQ winner Mack DeMan in third. Zavarella finished fourth with Kyle Hutchinson rounding out the top five.
Lancaster’s X-Press Signs Stock Car Series is back in action this Thursday night at 7 p.m. with a special midweek show. The VP Racing Fuels Sportsman will finish their rain-delayed feature from May 19 followed by a full show for all three home track divisions. The next Saturday night stock car event is June 16 with the Joe Reilly Sportsman Summer Slam 75.
-Lancaster National Speedway Press Release
-Photo credit: Paula Thompson