posted June 10, 2002 01:50 AM
Woodhall and Hall top Sprints and Modifieds in a night of new winners at
By Mike Leone
June 8, 2002 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Mercer, PA.Mercer Raceway Park completed its sixth race event of the 2002
season on Saturday night as four new winners graced the Moore's Auto Body
victory lane. Taking the checkered flag first were Brian Woodhall-Luxaire
Heating & Cooling Sprint Cars, Rick Hall-Big-Block Modifieds, Bill Adams-New
Castle School of Trades Sportsman Modifieds, and Shaun Hooks-Butterfield's
Pub Stock Cars. Moore's Auto Body once again presented bonus monies to the
10th and 16th place finishers in all four divisions.
It was Mahoning Valley Scrappers Baseball Night. Over 400 baseball-themed
prizes were given away including Scrapper tickets and Mercer Raceway Park
baseballs and pennants. All little leaguers were admitted free. Kids got to
meet "Scrappy," the Scrappers mascot.
Seventeen-year-old, second-year racer Brian Woodhall won the 20-lap Luxaire
Heating & Cooling Sprint Car feature for his second career win. "The car was
perfect," said the 2001 Western Pa. Rookie of the Year. "I have to thank my
dad because without him I couldn't do it. We had a good setup and we
switched to American Racer Tires."
Gary Kriess, Jr. shot past pole-sitter Chris Matthews at wave of the green
flag, while Woodhall and Gary McCollum followed in second and third. Rob
Eyler was on the charge from the seventh starting spot. Eyler caught
McCollum and made the move for third on lap five.
Up front, Woodhall closed on leader Kriess and was right on him on lap
seven. Lapped traffic became a factor with Kriess trying to hold on to the
lead. Kriess was struggling to lap Aaron Shaffer and on lap 12 got into the
rear of his machine causing Kriess to loop his mount bringing out the
When racing resumed, the new top five were Woodhall, Eyler, Jimmy Hawley up
from 10th, Arnie Kent, and Tom Quarterson. Woodhall pulled away from the
pack, while Eyler and Hawley diced for second. The final caution was
displayed for Ralph Spithaler, Jr., who spun the Byron West-owned #55S team
car to Pup Nystrom, with 16 laps completed.
Lap 18 saw Quarterson and Troy Preston both pass Kent for fourth and fifth.
Eyler continued to hold off Hawley for second until lap 19 when Hawley got a
good run off turn two to pass Eyler down the backstretch. But Woodhall wasn'
t going to be denied the win in the Brian Woodhall (Sr.)-owned, Premier
Enterprises/CNC Specialties Manufacturing/Keystone Rehabilitation-sponsored
#8B. "The car was a little loose coming off," said the New Kensington, Pa.
driver. "Toward the end I started to lose the brakes. I heated them up too
much in lapped traffic, then they started to come back under caution."
Last week's winner, Hawley, rode home second. Eyler was third for the second
time in three weeks. Quarterson and Preston were fourth and fifth. Rounding
out the top 10 were Kent, Jason Dolick, Dave Wagner, Kevin Andrusky, and
McCollum. Heat winners over the 28-car field were Quarterson, Kriess, and
Preston. Spithaler won the B main.
Kent of New Castle, Pa. was the highest finishing 360 Sprint Car as he
received the $150 bonus for the second time this year. Dolick, Todd Bauer,
and Jamie Martin also received bonus monies for being the second through
fourth highest finishing 360s. A season-high 15 360s were on hand. Bauer
continues to lead the Gardner Competition Racing Engines point standings.
Rick Hall returned to victory lane for the first time since May 1, 1999 in
the 20-lap Big-Block Modified feature to become the seventh different winner
in eight features this season. "I had a lot of fun," said the Grove City
driver. "We changed a lot of this week and it really hooked up good. Tom
(Kristyak) was right there, but I thought I could stay ahead of him if I
could keep inside."
Dean Pearson raced to the front of the pack on the opening lap passing Jerry
Bickel and Nick Ritchey. Ritchey then slowed on lap four bringing out the
caution and moved Hall up to third from his fifth starting spot for the
restart. A caution for Steve Barr with five laps completed was just what
Hall needed. On lap six, Hall and Riggs both got past Pearson for the top
two positions. Kristyak, who started 12th, dropped Pearson back another spot
on lap seven when he raced into third.
Kristyak was now the driver to watch as he continued to use the inside
groove. On lap nine, Kristyak slipped under Riggs for second in turn two.
Two more cautions slowed action for the final time, one for Joe Crawford and
the other for J.R. McGinley on laps 11 and 16. Hall though was able to keep
Kristyak at bay for the final laps to score his seventh career Mercer
big-block win. Hall's new Bicknell has proved beneficial as the Hall's
Safety Equipment/Klein Tools-sponsored #B4 already has two top fives and
five top tens and is in the thick of the championship race. Hall didn't
finish better than fifth in any feature the past two seasons.
Kristyak and Riggs finished second and third. Bob Dorman was fourth over Tim
Doran. Sixth through tenth were Jeff Schaffer, Pearson, Rodney Beltz,
Bickel, and Rich Ferguson. Heat winners over the 26-car field were Schaffer,
Doran, and Pearson.
Bill Adams of Hermitage, Pa. topped the 20-lap New Castle School of Trades
Sportsman Modified feature for his first victory since a win 20 years ago at
Pleasantville Speedway in a mini stock. Barry Bulfone led the first two laps
until he spun in turn four giving the lead to Les Myers. Myers' lead lasted
until lap five when Steve Young took over after starting 12th. Just when it
appeared Young was off to another win, he looped his car in turn two on lap
17 and collected the top runners of Myers, Rick Hall, and Chad Reitz. Adams
came through the accident unscathed and held off Jerry Schaffer over the
final four laps to take the win in the Doug Updyke-owned, D&D Redline
Racing/Marsh Farms-sponsored #33. Randy Rodemoyer's third was his best
finish since a second on July 8, 2000. Andy Paden was fourth and Young came
back to finish fifth. Reitz, Ron Eperthener, Jr., and Young were heat
winners over the season-high 28-car field. Brian Booher won the B main.
Shaun Hooks of New Castle, Pa. was at the head of the pack after a wild
15-lap Butterfield's Pub Stock Car feature. Brian Miller grabbed the lead on
the opening lap, while Greg Beach passed Terry Kroner and Rick Lanigan for
second. Two-time winner, Gary Norman, came from sixth to move into third on
lap two when he got around Lanigan. Beach got under Miller to lead lap five
as Norman followed in second. One lap later, Norman charged under Beach to
take over the top spot, while Kevin Thompson passed Miller for third.
Norman and Beach were really going at it racing side-by-side trading the
high and low grooves. On lap 10, the two made contact in turns three and
four; cars scattered everywhere and with the green light still on, Thompson,
Hooks, and Rusty Moore came through in the top three positions. Thompson and
Hooks would now battle for the win over the next five laps. Hooks was right
on Thompson on the final lap and as the two raced down the backstretch,
Hooks appeared primed to take make the winning move. In turn four, Hooks
ducked him Thompson and edged ahead at the checkereds to win by one-half of
Hooks' second career Mercer win came in his Benny Lombardo Auto
Repair/Plotts Transmission/M&D Paving-sponsored #65. Hooks, who leads the
points, has recorded 19 straight top 10 finishes dating to back to last
season. Thompson was second for the second straight week. Third through
fifth were Moore, Andy Buckley, and Jim Brunson in just his second race of
2002. Hooks, Buckley, and Moore won the heats over the 33-car field. Rick
Anthony won the B main.
Luxaire Heating & Cooling Sprint Cars: 1. BRIAN WOODHALL 2. Jimmy Hawley 3.
Rob Eyler 4. Tom Quarterson 5. Troy Preston 6. Arnie Kent 7. Jason Dolick 8.
Dave Wagner 9. Kevin Andrusky 10. Gary McCollum 11. Gary Kriess, Jr. 12.
Todd Bauer 13. Aaron Middaugh 14. Jamie Martin 15. Garrett Jacobs 16. Aaron
Shaffer 17. Staple Nash 18. Pup Nystrom 19. Chris Matthews 20. Leonard
Ripper, Jr. 21. Ralph Spithaler, Jr. 22. Paul Kapuchuck 23. Randy Kriegisch
24. Eric Turrill DNQ-Brian Hartzell, Paul Kish, Butch Beasley, Gregg
Big-Block Modifieds: 1. RICK HALL 2. Tommy Kristyak 3. Lonny Riggs 4. Bob
Dorman 5. Tim Doran 6. Jeff Schaffer 7. Dean Pearson 8. Rodney Beltz 9.
Jerry Bickel 10. Rich Ferguson 11. Carl Murdick 12. Chanda Reitz 13. Rick
Kress 14. Steve Barr 15. Justin Broerman 16. Jim Bickel 17. J.R. McGinley
18. Jeff Baker 19. Greg Unrue 20. Frank Guidace 21. Nick Ritchey 22. Joe
Crawford 23. Scott Kay 24. Adam Kozar 25. Les Myers-DNS 26. Ed Alcorn-DNS.
New Castle School of Trades Sportsman Modifieds: 1. BILL ADAMS 2. Jerry
Schaffer 3. Randy Rodemoyer 4. Andy Paden 5. Steve Young 6. Leroy Johnson,
Jr. 7. Chad Reitz 8. Dave Cogswell 9. Steve Toth 10. Kevin Latshaw 11. John
Confer 12. Fred Maxwell 13. John Jones 14. Al Priester 15. Les Myers 16.
Rick Hall 17. Mike Mathieson 18. John Buchanan 19. Jim Schaffer 20. Gary
Smoker 21. Barry Bulfone 22. Ron Eperthener, Jr. 23. Brian Booher 24. Zack
Moran 25. Jim Thompson-DNS DNQ-Morgan Sasse, Shane McElhaney, Fred Sasse.
Butterfield's Pub Stock Cars: 1. SHAUN HOOKS 2. Kevin Thompson 3. Rusty
Moore 4. Andy Buckley 5. Jim Brunson 6. Terry Kroner 7. Gary Norman 8. Bobby
Whitling 9. Rick Lanigan 10. Brian Miller 11. Mike Aley 12. Rick Anthony 13.
Phil Kaufman 14. Duane Grinnell 15. Rick Norco 16. Scott Peterson 17. Jason
Johns 18. Joe Updegraff 19. Mark Sanders 20. Greg Beach 21. Doug Iorio 22.
Willie Aley 23. Andy Thompson 24. Ron Iorio DNQ-Robert Caszatt, Jr., Don
Greenlee, Clyde Roberts, Chuck Kerr, Tim Zuschlag, Russ Coyne, Rich Chess,
Sr., Lester Bates, John Iorio.
Upcoming Events:June 15 "Wingless/The Return - Part III" presented by
Chevron East. NAMARS vs. ARDC Midget Car Clash ($2,000), Wingless Sprints
($2,000), Sportsman Mods ($500), & Stock Cars ($500).
June 22 Sprints, Big-Block Mods, Sportsman Mods, & Stocks. Jr. Fan Night
featuring the Nickelodeon "Rugrats", kids bike races, and Grove City Auto
Mall "Meet Your Heroes"/Sportsman Mods.
June 29 Sprints, Big-Block Mods, Sportsman Mods, & Stocks. American Patriot
Night. Fireworks spectacular- A Zambelli Internationale Production. Free
admission for all vets with ID and all scouts in uniform.
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 15. 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 www.mercerracewaypark.com E-mail to email@example.com