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Author Topic:   Kent wins first in Sprints; Riggs claims first ever Mercer Modified win
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posted May 13, 2001 10:29 AM UIN: 16262997
Kent wins first in Sprints; Riggs claims first ever Mercer Modified win

By Mike Leone


Mercer (PA)...The fourth night of the 2001 season at Mercer Raceway Park was
completed on Saturday night. Celebrating with their first wins of the season
in the Moore's Auto Body victory lane were Arnie Kent-Luxaire Heating &
Cooling Sprint Cars, Lonny Riggs-Bolland Machine Big-Block Modifieds, Steve
Young-New Castle School of Trades Sportsman Modifieds, and Ron
Iorio-Butterfield's Pub Stock Cars. It was Brad Doty Night at the track.
Doty signed autographs for over two and half hours, then gave color
commentary throughout the evening. His Coors Light "Silver Bullet" #18
Sprint Car was also on display.

It was only fitting that Arnie Kent won on Brad Doty Night. Kent carried his
hero Doty's car #18 to victory lane for his first win of the season in the
20-lap Luxaire Heating & Cooling Sprint Car feature. "Brad (Doty) brought me
some good luck tonight," said the New Castle, Pa. driver, who became the
fourth different winner in four races this season.

Rob Eyler jumped into the lead from the outside of the front row passing
Brian Woodhall on the start. Kent passed Mike Shearer and Woodhall for
second later the lap. Jimmy Hawley, who started 10th, got by both Troy
Preston and Woodhall for third on lap three.

Eyler caught lapped traffic on lap six as action really heated up. Kent
closed on Eyler on lap seven and made the winning move in traffic coming off
turn four. Kent raced hard through lapped traffic, while Eyler and Hawley
stayed within striking distance. On lap 13, Hawley got under Eyler in turn
two in traffic for second and began to set his sights on Kent.

Kent and Hawley put on quite a race the last four laps that kept everyone on
the edge of their seats as they raced through traffic. Kent continued to run
the outside, while Hawley tried to use the inside to his advantage. On the
final lap, Hawley got under Kent in turn three and the two were side-by-side
racing off turn four, but Kent had enough momentum off the top side to hold
on for his third career Mercer win. The race went non-stop in five minutes
and six seconds.

"I looked up and saw that 3 (Hawley) on the scoreboard in second and ran in
a little harder than I needed, but it worked out," said Kent, who is
sponsored by Dr. Martello Dentistry and McElwain Chevy-Olds.

Ninth starter, Tom Quarterson, made a late charge passing Preston for fourth
on lap 16 then got by Eyler on lap 19 to finish third. Eyler dropped to
fourth over Gary Kriess, Jr. Sixth through tenth were Andy Priest, Preston,
Mike Kekich, Woodhall, and Gary McCollum. Winning the heats over the 20-car
field were Hawley, Eyler, and Kekich.

Lonny Riggs was the beneficiary of Joe Crawford's misfortune to capture his
first career Mercer Big-Block Modified win in the 20-lap Bolland
Machine-sponsored event. "I hated to see Joe (Crawford) get into the wall,"
said the Volant, Pa. driver. "That's a tough break for him, but we're glad
to be here."

Bob Dorman took the early lead from the pole position, while Crawford moved
into runner-up past Rick Hall on the opening lap. Riggs, who started sixth,
worked his way to third by lap four passing Frank Guidace just before the
caution was displayed for Gary Risch, Jr. On the restart, Crawford took the
lead away from Dorman and immediately began to pull away.

Riggs got around Dorman for second on lap seven. The laps ticked off without
any cautions or any changes up front until lap 15 when Dean Pearson and Lou
Blaney both got by Dorman for third and fourth. Pearson went to the inside
and Blaney to the outside of Dorman for the three-wide pass in turn four.

Crawford had a straightaway lead on Riggs and a near 1/2-lap lead on Blaney
and Pearson in third and fourth. The Polk, Pa. driver appeared like he was
going to put all his Mercer bad luck to bed and capture his first Mercer
win. Crawford worked heavy lapped traffic on lap 17 and 18. Coming off turn
four, Crawford and Murdick got together slightly. Crawford tried to clear
Murdick on the outside, but instead hit the turn one wall ending his night.

This gave the lead to Riggs, who led the final two laps for the win in the
Merle Black-owned, Winners Circle Automotive Machine/Suhrie Industrial
Supply Tool Rental-sponsored #58. "That was good," said Riggs in victory
lane. "It felt good to win one here at Mercer- it's been awhile." Riggs'
last Mercer win came on May 30, 1998 in a Sportsman Modified.

Blaney held off Pearson for second. Dorman's fourth place was his best ever
finish. Tim Doran raced from sixteenth to finish fifth. Completing the top
10 were Rodney Beltz, Rob Curtis, Chetter Johnson, Guidace, and Jeff
Schaffer. Heat winners over the 30-car field were Riggs, Johnson, and
Schaffer. Don McKnight won the B main.

Steve Young picked up his first 20-lap New Castle School of Trades Sportsman
Modified win. Young started the event from seventh and raced to the front
taking second off Leroy Johnson, Jr. on lap four. Jerry Schaffer led the
first eight laps. But following the restart for Buck Buchanan's spin, Young
took over the lead from Schaffer. Young of Grove City, Pa. went on for his
ninth career Mercer Sportsman Modified win in the J.R. Greer-owned,
Montgomery Truss & Panel-sponsored #11t. Gary Smoker had a strong run coming
from twelfth to finish second after passing Schaffer for the spot on lap 10.
Allen Ferry came back to finish third after pitting early and restarting on
the tail. Bill Adams and Andy Paden were fourth and fifth. Heat victors over
the 26-car field were Adams, Young, and John Buchanan.

Ron Iorio edged Dave Ferringer to win his first ever Mercer Stock Car win in
the 15-lap Butterfield's Pub-sponsored event. Gary Miller, Jr. took the lead
from Jeff Kravec on lap three, but broke on the lap five restart giving the
lead to Ferringer. On lap six, Iorio passed both Kevin Thompson and
Ferringer for the lead. At the halfway mark it was a three-car race with
Iorio, Ferringer, and Andy Buckley battling for the lead. With three laps to
go, Gary Robinson, Willie Aley, and Lynn Hostetler joined the battle making
it a six-car race for the win. In turn two on the final lap, Ferringer
slipped under Iorio for the lead; however, Iorio returned the favor in turn
four and edged Ferringer by a wheel-length in his Gabany's-sponsored #55.
Third through fifth were Buckley, Robinson, and Aley. Scoring heat wins over
the 37-car field were Miller, Bobby Whitling, Aley, and Buckley. Winning the
two B mains were Mike Aley and Rick Norco.

Notes...Despite the cold and windy conditions with temps dropping into the
40s, $1,431.21 was collected for Sprint Car driver Kevin Andrusky, who broke
three vertebrae in an accident at Tri-City Speedway last Sunday. Stock Car
driver Ed Lombardo was rushed to United Community Hospital in Grove City,
Pa. following an accident in the first B main. Lombardo of New Castle, Pa.
was then life-flighted to Presbyterian Hospital in Pittsburgh were he
remained in fair condition. He is expected to be released from the hospital
in two to three days. Jarod Larson and Tommy Burns, Jr. tangled in the first
sprint car heat with Burns getting upside down. Both drivers were okay, but
done for the night.

Luxaire Heating & Cooling Sprint Cars: 1. ARNIE KENT 2. Jimmy Hawley 3. Tom
Quarterson 4. Rob Eyler 5. Gary Kriess, Jr. 6. Andy Priest 7. Troy Preston
8. Mike Kekich 9. Brian Woodhall 10. Gary McCollum 11. Jason Jacoby 12. Mike
Kaminski 13. Dave Wagner 14. Nathan Hines 15. Gregg McCandless 16. John Toth
III 17. Butch Beasley 18. Mike Shearer 19. Tommy Burns, Jr.-DNS 20. Jarod

Bolland Machine Big-Block Modifieds: 1. LONNY RIGGS 2. Lou Blaney 3. Dean
Pearson 4. Bob Dorman 5. Tim Doran 6. Rodney Beltz 7. Rob Curtis 8. Chetter
Johnson 9. Frank Guidace 10. Jeff Schaffer 11. Don McKnight 12. Rob Kristyak
13. Rick Hall 14. Mike Sutton 15. Carl Murdick 16. Lou Gentile 17. J.R.
McGinley 18. Adam Siegel 19. Joe Crawford 20. Scott Gurdak 21. Tommy
Kristyak 22. Nick Ritchey 23. Gary Risch, Jr. 24. George Davis DNQ-Carl
Weatherby, Lee Miller, Mark Sevin, Kevin Bolland, Terry Young, John Boyer,

New Castle School of Trades Sportsman Modifieds: 1. STEVE YOUNG 2. Gary
Smoker 3. Allen Ferry 4. Bill Adams 5. Andy Paden 6. Chanda Reitz 7. Rick
Hall 8. Fred Sasse 9. Jerry Schaffer 10. Gary Bollinger 11. D.J. Schrader
12. Leroy Johnson, Jr. 13. Rick Ryder 14. Buck Buchanan 15. Dave Coggswell
16. Bill Baptiste 17. Brad Watson 18. John Jones 19. Morgan Sasse 20. Randy
Rodemoyer 21. John Buchanan 22. Al Priester 23. Greg Unrue 24. Andy Priest
25. Mike Mathieson 26. Curt Matthews.

Butterfield's Pub Stock Cars: 1. RON IORIO 2. Dave Ferringer 3. Andy Buckley
4. Gary Robinson 5. Willie Aley 6. Jeff Kravec 7. Lynn Hostetler 8. Russ
Kapalin 9. Bobby Whitling 10. Rick Anthony 11. Shaun Hooks 12. Rick Norco
13. Jim Brunson 14. Gary Norman 15. Greg Beach 16. Andy Thompson 17. Ed Hays
18. Mark Felicetty 19. Dwight Boice 20. Kevin Thompson 21. Gary Miller, Jr.
22. Brian Miller 23. Mike Aley 24. Bill Hanna DNQ-Ray Bailey, Jr., Bob Hays,
Adam Reseigh, Bill Kirschner, Todd Titus, Adam Aley, Erick Cwynar, Robert
Caszatt, Jr., Ed Lombardo, Matt Rubright, Lonnie O'Brien, Rusty Moore, Dan

Upcoming Events:

5/19 Hovis Auto & Truck Supply Bill Emig Memorial-Triple 25s for Big-Block
Mods, Sportsman Mods ($500 to-win), & Stock Cars ($500 to-win) plus a Demo

5/26-27 Hunter's Truck Sales & Service "American Thunder Weekend"

Sat-Triathlon Series Sprint kickoff, Big-Block Mods, Sportsman Mods, & Stock
Cars. $500 Dave Blaney Outlaw Driving Experience giveaway.

Sun-ATPA Grand American Spring Nationals-Big Rig Semis, Unlimited Super
Stock Tractors sponsored by Greenhill Farms, Super Stock 4-WD Trucks, & Demo
Derby. (Rain date Monday Memorial Day)

6/02 Sprints, Big-Block Mods, Sportsman Mods, & Stock Cars. "Summer Fun
Kickoff"-Presented by Sandcastle & Idlewild- over 150 ticket giveaways plus
an appearance by Kennywood's Garfield.

Gates open at 4:30 p.m. Racing at 6:30 p.m.

Contact: Mike Leone, 53 East Glenora Drive, Grove City, PA 16127. Office
phone 724-964-9300 and fax to 724-964-0604. Home phone/fax: 724-748-3358.

Mercer Raceway Park is located 3 miles north of I-80, exit 2. The track is
0.5 miles north of SR 258 on US 19, then 0.2 miles east on Fairgrounds Road
in Findley Township. The office number is 724-964-9300. Fax to 724-964-0604.
The race track phone number is 724-662-1310. Our web site is E-mail to

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