Midvale Speedway racing action this past Saturday saw new feature winners in the top two classes, while repeat winners took trophies in the Street Stocks, Compacts, and Mini Trucks. At intermission, a large number of kids participated in the big wheel and bicycle races.
With the Main Event Racing Series at Angola, the McIntosh Oil Company Late Model field was a bit smaller. That said, the only winner on hand from previous events this year was point leader, Mike Miller. That opened things up for a real competitive race and left the trophy up for grabs for someone new. When the green dropped, Rick Sibila raced into the lead ahead of Ron Kirkpatrick. A caution with two laps in, sent Bob Schneider, Jr. to the outside of Sibila for the restart. This time, it was Schneider racing to the lead with Sibila in tow. Schneider held a comfortable, but not huge, lead as drivers shuffled behind. Top qualifier, Mike Miller, was looking to the outside of Tom Stankiewicz for the third spot at the halfway mark. As the duo exited turn two, Stankiewicz came off the bottom a bit and as Miller tried to get back in line, the car got sideways and clipped the Joe Linard #82. Linard’s car then careened off of the backstretch wall, nearly head on. The car then continued to turn three where it came to a rest after another hit against the wall. Linard was okay but the front clip was destroyed. Miller also retired with damage to the left front suspension. Back to green, Stankiewicz continued to apply some pressure but Schneider held a pretty wheel and protected the inside lane. As the checkered waved, it was Dennison, Ohio’s Bob Schneider, Jr. taking the win in his Landstar by Jeff Secrest/Guess Motors #17 taking his third career feature win and his first this season. Following the second generation racer across the line were Stankiewicz, Sibila who rallied nicely after going to the back for breaking out of his qualifying time, Ron Kirkpatrick, and Matthew Mills. The rest of the top ten were Larry Baker, Rick Grudier, Linard, Miller, and Bob Eichel. Schneider and Baker won the heats.
20 beautiful Summit Racing Economy Modifieds lined up for the 25-lap feature event. Tad Grove and Lucas Ripley, both in their second Modified seasons, had good qualifying runs to put them on the front row with a small invert of seven. When the green waved, it was Grove racing into the lead. Veteran racer Glen Jewell quickly moved into second which turned out to be important as the race’s first yellow occurred with one lap in. That put Jewell on the outside for the restart and it turned out that he would keep his car in that groove for just about every lap of the race. Jewell was persistent to make things happen, despite Grove pulling ahead. Eventually, Bob Sibila, Jr. moved to the inside of Jewell and took the runner-up spot away on lap eleven. A couple of laps later, top qualifier Preston Walker moved into the third spot to become a contender. The race’s final caution waved with 19 and gave Sibila a final chance to get at Grove. The New Philadelphia, Ohio driver not only fended off the challenge of Sibila, he also had to hold off Walker who made a nice late race charge. At the checkered, the J.D. Byrider/CNAC Financing #3 was followed to his first career Modified win by Walker, Sibila, Ripley, and Jewell. The rest of the top ten were Justin Courtney, Jason Grewell, Tyler Noeske, Mike Bowers, and Mike Green. Grove, Adam Stewart, and Chris Piehl won the heats.
Arguably, the best race of the night may have taken place in the J.D. Byrider Street Stock division. The 20 lap feature took the green with Teddy Oliver racing into the lead during his first start of the year. Oliver had some rear end issues with his car moments later, though, and retired to the pits. The new leader was Dennis Wood, who has been running great the last couple of weeks in the Petrus Motorsports #41. Wood pulled away for a few laps over Gary Hoopingarner before top qualifier, Rick Elkins, Jr. moved into second. Elkins started to close the gap and applied pressure almost immediately. Lap-after-lap Elkins was looking for a place to go, both low and high. A couple of times, Elkins pulled alongside in the high groove, only to break loose and drop back in line. However, late in the race, the Wood ride developed a slight push and Elkins gave it one last try. On the final lap with the two side-by-side on the exit of four, fans stood to their feet. As the duo race toward the stripe, battle scars were traded. Across the line, Elkins won by mere inches in a photo finish. It was so close that Wood was shown on the electronic scoring as the winner by .006. However, after looking at footage from Mid-Vid, it was determined that Elkins had inched just ahead of him. The crowd approved with nice applause for both and Elkins celebrated in victory lane for the second time this year. The Stewart Flooring/Impact Photography #62 was followed by Wood, Mike Martin, Hoopingarner, and Waylon Orr. The rest of the top ten were Josh Moss, Bob Passwaters, Sr., Bob Passwaters, Jr., Brian Lewis, Sr., and Oliver. Hoopingarner and Moss won the heats.
The lead spot in the Canton Auto Salvage Compact feature changed hands a number of times in the early stages. Zack Cogar, a second year racer, led for a lap before Dan Buckey assumed the point. Looming large behind them, though, was point leader Kyle Grove. Grove had some bad luck on Friday night as his primary ride suffered clutch issues. The team went to the backup on Saturday with success in qualifying, setting fast time. However, the motor mount broke and took the power steering with it. Missing the heat to repair the issue, the car was back on track for the feature and Grove came through the field quickly. Grove surpasses Buckey at the front of the field on lap five right before the race’s final caution. With the final ten laps going caution free, Grove built a sizable lead, fortunately for him, as Justin Renicker moved into second on lap nine and was laying down some impressive laps. At the checkered, Grove claimed his fourth win of the year by 1.4 seconds. The J.D. Byrider/Affordable Towing #3 was followed by Renicker, Wes Ennis, Buckey, and Braden Swaney, who was filling in for Jeffrey Orr. Others in the top ten were Tim Frederick, Clayton Oliver who nearly rolled his car when it went on two wheels while battling on the backstretch, Larry Ennis, Jr., and Gage Jaberg. Renicker and Laney Striejewske won the heats.
The final race of the night was the 10-lap Finish Line Motors Mini Truck class. Derek Cordia and Keith Anderson brought the field to green in the feature and just as soon as it waved, it was a four wide formation as Cyler Bertram went low and Mike Martin went high. Bertram took the lead in the first corner while Martin followed closely. As the race wore on, Martin stayed within striking distance but Bertram didn’t make any mistakes and held on for the win. For the Springfield Township, Ohio driver, it was his second win in a row. Martin took second with Anderson and Cordia third and fourth. Bertram’s Lake Auto Recycling/Tony Newman Roofing #155 finished second to Martin in the heat. Martin set fast time in qualifying.
Racing will continue this coming Saturday, June 21, as all five divisions will be on the track at intermission for autograph night. Spectator drags will also be held. Late Models, Economy Modifieds, Street Stocks, Compacts, and Mini Trucks will race.
Pit gates open at 2:30, hotlaps and grandstands at 3:00, qualifying at 4:45, and racing will start 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. Pit admission is $25 for members and $30 for non-members.
More info at midvalespeedway.com.
Results For Midvale Speedway
McIntosh Oil Company Late Models
Top Qualifier – Mike Miller 14.090
Heat #1 – Bob Schneider, Jr., Tom Stankiewicz, Mike Miller, Joe Linard, Matthew Mills
Heat #2 – Larry Baker, Rick Sibila, Ron Kirkpatrick, Rick Grudier, Nathan Embree
Feature – Bob Schneider, Jr., Tom Stankiewicz, Rick Sibila, Ron Kirkpatrick, Matthew Mills, Larry Baker, Rick Grudier, Joe Linard, Mike Miller, Bob Eichel
Summit Racing Economy Modifieds
Top Qualifier – Preston Walker 14.730
Heat #1 – Tad Grove, Glen Jewell, Bob Sibila, Jr., Lucas Ripley, Kevin McClintock
Heat #2 – Adam Stewart, Mike Bowers, Don Boron, Jr., Tyler Noeske, Justin Courtney
Heat #3 – Chris Piehl, Shawn Marder, Philip Cox, Bryce Allensworth, Ryan Baker
Feature – Tad Grove, Preston Walker, Bob Sibila, Jr., Lucas Ripley, Glen Jewell, Justin Courtney, Jason Grewell, Tyler Noeske, Mike Bowers, Mike Green, Chris Piehl, Bryce Allensworth, Philip Cox, Kevin McClintock, Adam Stewart, Lee McCreery, Don Boron, Jr., Shawn Marder, Ryan Baker, Todd Ripley
J.D. Byrider Street Stocks
Top Qualifier – Rick Elkins, Jr. 16.076
Heat #1 – Gary Hoopingarner, Dennis Wood, Mike Martin, Rick Elkins, Jr.
Heat #2 – Josh Moss, Waylon Orr, Bob Passwaters, Jr., Jason Wright, Bob Passwaters, Sr.
Feature – Rick Elkins, Jr., Dennis Wood, Mike Martin, Gary Hoopingarner, Waylon Orr, Josh Moss, Bob Passwaters, Sr., Bob Passwaters, Jr., Brian Lewis, Sr., Teddy Oliver
Canton Auto Salvage Compacts
Top Qualifier – Kyle Grove 17.937
Heat #1 – Justin Renicker, Wes Ennis, Braden Swaney, Clayton Oliver, Dan Buckey
Heat #2 – Laney Striejewske, Chase Beatty, Allen Clark, Cristian Bailey, Brandon France
Feature – Kyle Grove, Justin Renicker, Wes Ennis, Dan Buckey, Braden Swaney, Tim Frederick, Clayton Oliver, Larry Ennis, Jr., Laney Striejewske, Gage Jaberg, Zack Cogar, Chad Wise, Allen Clark, Brandon France, Cristian Bailey, Chase Beatty
Finish Line Motors Mini Trucks
Top Qualifier – Mike Martin 17.401
Heat – Mike Martin, Cyler Bertram, Keith Anderson, Derek Cordia
Feature – Cyler Bertram, Mike Martin, Keith Anderson, Derek Cordia