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posted July 09, 2001 12:07 AM UIN: 16262997
by Brian Spaid

July 8, 2001


FRANKLIN, PA ... As the summer heat dominated Tri-City Speedway on Sunday night, four drivers were just as hot as Rod George (Allegheny Land & Lumber Super Sprints), Jim Weller (Titusville Motor & Auction Co. DIRT Modifieds), Brent Rhebergen (RE/MAX E Mods) and Dave Ferringer (E.F. Rogers Plumbing & Heating Stock Cars) captured feature wins on Buyer's Fair/Pennzoil Night at the half-mile Venango County oval. In addition, Tim Lowry won the Pittsburgh Circle Track Club Zoresco Senior Series event.
In the 20-lap Super Sprint feature, Rod George of Kittanning, Pa., scored his first win at Tri-City since 1987 aboard his National Rehabilitation Equipment/Kittanning Dairy Queen Gambler No. 4. Starting 12th, George soared into the lead by the 13th lap and cruised to his first win of the season.
"The track was good for our car tonight," said George. "The tires worked well too. Even though it was slick, the track was nice and smooth. I didn't think I'd raced for fourteen years!"
Brent Matus and Gregg McCandless led the field to the green as the top 12 in the heat race finishes were inverted by the luck of the draw. Matus jumped into the lead and held the rest of the runners at bay. On the sixth circuit, Jason Jacoby moved into second. He closed on the leader and tried to slip under Matus. The second generation racers thrilled the crowd with their battle for the lead as George, Jarod Larson and Brian Ellenberger were in the top five by the tenth lap.
After point leader Scott Bonnell spun on the 11th lap, George used the restart to his advantage. Moving to the outside groove, George passed both leaders to assume command on the 13th lap. From there, George cruised to his first win of the season and the eighth of his career at Tri-City.
Behind him, Jacoby finished second over Ellenberger, who used the extreme outside lane the entire race. He nearly passed Jacoby, but could advance no further than third at the checkered. Matus finished a career best fourth followed by Gary Rankin in fifth. Larson dropped out of the race with mechancial problems. George and Ellenberger topped the heats.
"Gentleman" Jim Weller of Hubbard, Ohio, finally ended a bad luck streak in the 20-lap DIRT Modified feature. Since winning on opening night in April, Weller chased after gremlins in his Liberty Steel Bicknell No. 31. This time, Weller outclassed the field for his eight career win at Tri-City.
"We raced this car at Syracuse on Tuesday and lost the rear end," said Weller. "We put it back together and it really runs. We changed cars this week after struggling with the other one. Hopefully, more good things will come with this new Bicknell chassis."
The race featured five lead changes among four drivers. John Braymer led the first six laps of the race before Scott Gurdak took over. Dave Schrader and Gurdak engaged in a side-by-side duel for the lead over the next three circuits with Schrader actually leading the eighth lap. On the 11th circuit, Weller used an inside move to pass Schrader in turn two and Gurdak in turn three.
After taking command, Weller was never headed. Gurdak ended up second over Jeff Hoffman. J.R. McGinley scored his best career feature finish at Tri-City in fourth followed by Dave Murdick. The DIRT Modified heats were won by Jim Rasey, Murdick and defending track champion Kevin Bolland.
In the 15-lap E Mod feature, Brent Rhebergen of Clymer, N.Y., scored his sixth consecutive win to further solidify his track record at Tri-City. It was his seventh victory of the season in Bruce Steadman's Sharp Tool & Die/Finish Line Racing Pierce No. 69 and the eighth of his career. After the race, track officials announced that RE/MAX 1st Oil Country posted a $100 bounty on Rhebergen. The first driver that beats him while he is still running will collect the extra cash.
"This team is awesome," said Rhebergen. "How about this Bob Pierce chassis? These cars run well. We have been on a roll. If it takes a bounty to bring on the competition, I'm looking forward to it."
Mike Hess led at the start of the race, but Rhebergen showed his speed moving from fifth to second out of turn two on the first lap. Running the high groove, Rhebergen patiently challenged Hess. Finally, on the fifth lap, Rhebergen snatched the lead out of turn four.
From there, Rhebergen simply pulled away from the field. Behind Rhebergen and Hess, Dale Applebee found himself bouncing up and down through the top five. After a restart on the fifth lap, he fell from third to fifth. Using the same outside cushion as Rhebergen, Applebee climbed back up to third.
Rhebergen crossed the line in first followed by Hess. After the race, however, Hess was disqualified for an illegal spoiler. That moved Applebee into the runnerup slot for the second week in a row. Bob McCann finished third followed by Mike Samuelson and Ron Jaeger. McCann, Rhebergen and Shawn Domhoff won the heats.
Starting on the front row of the 15-lap Stock Car main, Dave Ferringer of Cochranton, Pa., outlasted the heated challenges of Ron Iorio to score his first win at the track since July 11, 1999. Ferringer won the 2000 track title without winning a feature event in his Bicentennial Blast/Lowry Auto Body Chevrolet No. 02. It was his tenth career win at Tri-City.
"Maybe we finally broke the ice," said a happy Ferringer in victory lane. "I wish we could figure out why we haven't won, but we'll take this one. I knew Iorio was back there and that he would be tough."
Two wild wrecks highlighted the first half of the race. On the third lap, Doug Calvert spun in the frontstretch and was struck by point leader Bobby Whitling, who rolled his car in the first heat. Calvert was uninjured, but his car was severely damaged. Whitling pitted for repairs and came back onto the track three laps down. Then, on the sixth lap, Bob Sloss had the throttle stick on his racer and he vaulted over the top of the third turn fence into the golf course. Amazingly, Sloss was uninjured and drove the car back onto the track without losing a lap.
After those incidents were cleared, Ferringer dominated. Iorio gave chase the entire distance, but had to hold off Andy Buckley at the end of the race to keep second. Buckley finished third after a fine duel with Scotty Carbaugh. Carbaugh, last year's top rookie, spun in turn two on the 13th circuit ending a fine run. Danny Exley and Doug Iorio Sr. rounded out the top five. D. Iorio, Exley and Carbaugh won the Stock Car heats.
At the end of the night, Tim Lowry of Franklin, Pa., won the 15-lap Pittsburgh Circle Track Club Senior Series race. Lowry piloted Dave Ferringer's winning Stock Car to his first career win at Tri-City. Series point leader Wheeler, Bill Wheeling, Don Gamble and Ed Rogers rounded out the top five. Wheeling and Lowry won the heats.
This coming Sunday July 15th, Tri-City Speedway will feature the Allegheny Land & Lumber Super Sprints, Titusville Motor & Auction Co. DIRT Modifieds, RE/MAX E Mods and E.F. Rogers Plumbing & Heating Stock Cars in another stellar show. Joining the action will be the second Lowry Auto Wrecking Demolition Derby of the season as the track celebrates Selker Bros./Pennzoil Night. Gates open at 4 p.m. and racing starts at 6 p.m.

SUPER SPRINTS (20 Laps): 1. ROD GEORGE, 2. Jason Jacoby, 3. Brian Ellenberger, 4. Brent Matus, 5. Gary Rankin, 6. Chad Hill, 7. Mark Cassella, 8. Brent Covell, 9. Scott Bonnell, 10. Gregg McCandless, 11. John Toth III, 12. Ricky Ferkel, 13. Ray Bullis, 14. Brian Hartzell, 15. Sheila Rankin, 16. Jarod Larson.
DIRT MODIFIEDS (20 Laps): 1. JIM WELLER, 2. Scott Gurdak, 3. Jeff Hoffman, 4. J.R. McGinley, 5. Dave Murdick, 6. Del Rougeux Jr., 7. Dave Schrader, 8. Kevin Bolland, 9. John Braymer, 10. Joe Crawford, 11. Brian Swartzlander, 12. Jeremiah Shingledecker, 13. Rex King, 14. Josh Skarzenski, 15. Chris Schiffer, 16. Rob Kristyak, 17. Jim Rasey, 18. Kevin Hoffman, 19. Nick Ritchey, 20. Gary Risch Jr., 21. Carl Murdick, 22. Skip Moore, 23. Chanda Reitz, 24. Dell Kuchta, 25. George Hobaugh, 26. Tim Engles.
E MODS (15 Laps): 1. BRENT RHEBERGEN, 2. Dale Applebee, 3. Bob McCann, 4. Mike Samuelson, 5. Ron Jaeger, 6. Todd Roncaglione, 7. Russ Dunn, 8. Dale Fuller, 9. Bob Craig, 10. Kevin Decker, 11. Tim Henrich, 12. Bill Taylor, 13. Bootie Petsko, 14. Steve Artrip, 15. Shawn Shingledecker, 16. Kari Petrosky, 17. Dean Ruth, 18. Ron Loney, 19. Herm Myers, 20. Shawn Domhoff, 21. Jim Mechling, 22. J.R. Peebles, 23. John Kellogg, 24. Jim Abbott, 25. Mike Potosky, 26. Mike Hess (DISQ). DNS: Dave Ferringer.
STOCK CARS (15 Laps): 1. DAVE FERRINGER, 2. Ron Iorio, 3. Andy Buckley, 4. Danny Exley, 5. Doug Iorio Sr., 6. **** Pascorell, 7. John Shetler, 8. Jamie Shetler, 9. Lonny Blair, 10. Jim Green, 11. John Sutley, 12. Todd Titus, 13. Bud Shontz, 14. Mike Miller, 15. Scotty Carbaugh, 16. Brian Counselman, 17. Rod Urey, 18. Bobby Whitling, 19. Arthur Edwards, 20. Bob Garris, 21. Bob Sloss, 22. J.R. Ziegler, 23. Jay Feely, 24. Mike Dolecki, 25. Jason Jones, 26. Doug Calvert, 27. Scott Peterson, 28. Russ Kapalin.
PCTC SENIOR SERIES (15 Laps): 1. TIM LOWRY, 2. Terry Wheeler, 3. Bill Wheeling, 4. Don Gamble, 5. Ed Rogers, 6. Bud Holben, 7. Curt Bish, 8. Pat Wilcox, 9. Sid Haas, 10. Car No. 38, 11. Gary Proper, 12. Don Bauer, 13. Steve Anderson.


July 15 - Sprints, DIRT Modifieds, E Mods and Stock Cars with Lowry Auto Wrecking
Demolition Derby (Selker Bros. Pennzoil Night)
July 20 & 21 - Motor Madness Monster Jam Featuring SFX USHRA Monster
Trucks and Amateur and Professional Quad Wars Presented by Schwab Ford
(Gates Open 4 p.m., Show Starts 7:30 p.m. each night)
July 22 - NO RACING (Midsummer Break)
July 29 - Sprints, DIRT Modifieds, E Mods and Stock Cars (Klasen Oil/Pennzoil Night) (Student
Appreciation Night) (Shrine Night)
Aug. 5 - Advance Auto Parts Super DIRT Modified Series A Crivelli Chevrolet/GMC 100
(Titusville Motor & Auction Co. DIRT Modifieds, $6,000-to-win) and York Triathlon
E Mods Series

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