FASTRAK NE Tour Sharon Gary Knollinger Memorial 6/23/12 preview
$2,000 TO-WIN 2ND ANNUAL “GARY KNOLLINGER MEMORIAL” UP NEXT FOR FASTRAK NE LATE MODEL TOURING SERIES SATURDAY AT SHARON
By Mike Leone
June 20, 2012 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
(Hartford, OH)…The Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC Pace Performance FASTRAK Northeast Late Model Touring Series will return to Sharon Speedway this Saturday (June 23) for another appearance at the state-of-the-art Hartford, Ohio facility. It’ll be the second annual “Gary Knollinger Memorial,” and with good weather predicted, Sharon will host race #8 of 25 on the 2012 slate.
Saturday’s 30-lap $2,000 to-win “Gary Knollinger Memorial” will pay tribute to a racer that left his mark on FASTRAK in just two seasons. The Wheeling, West Virginia racer won his first ever Touring Series race in 2010 at Sharon, finished fourth in points, and also won the inaugural Mid-Ohio Valley Touring Series title that year. In those two seasons, Knollinger only missed two races counting all Northeast and MOV Touring shows, National Events, and Grand National shows- and both of them came in 2010!
Sharon was one of Gary’s favorite tracks and the site of his popular 2010 victory thus the Knollinger Family decided Sharon was where they wanted to hold this event once again. Friends and family of the Knollingers will again be on hand.
Knollinger was stuck by a vehicle on December 18, 2010 in Triadelphia, W.V. near the Middle Creek Garage located along a busy stretch of U.S. 40. Knollinger was working for the garage when the accident occurred. Knollinger was 39 and piloted the familiar #38K sponsored by Gumby’s Grab & Go and H.P. Excavating.
Saturday’s format will be the same as the “Bill Emig Memorial” where the first heat race winner will draw an invert of 0-9 (three heats), 0-8 (four heats) or 0-10 (five heats). The top four cars following the invert will run the K&N “Cold Air Induction” Dash to determine the first four starting spots of the feature. The remaining positions following the invert will be straight-up from heat and B main finishes. This format will now take effect for all $2,000 or more to-win events.
Thanks to Edwards W. Stifel III, a longtime friend of sponsor of Knollinger, the dash will pay $100 to-win! Second place will receive the $100 K&N certificate with third getting a $50 K&N certificate and fourth place $25 cash. If five heats are run, five cars will be in the dash with fifth place paying $25 cash. The feature winner will receive a beautiful engraved statue trophy to commemorate the win.
Max Blair, the defending “Gary Knollinger Memorial” winner, enters Saturday night with a hefty 42-point lead over Butch Lambert. The 22-year-old Centerville, Pa. defending three-time champion has been off to a magical start winning five of the first seven features along with a pair of third place finishes. His earnings have already topped over $10,000 cash plus contingencies in those seven events alone!
Lambert continues his best ever Touring start in his fifth year on the trail. Lambert has recorded three top 5s and five top 10 finishes with no DNFs. Lambert was able to break the runner-up point tie last Saturday with Chad Ruhlman thanks to a sixth place finish compared to Ruhlman’s ninth. The heated battle for second sees Lambert lead Ruhlman by three, Saturday’s McKean winner Ryan Montgomery by six, and a fast-closing Mike Pegher, Jr. by just seven! After suffering three finishes outside the top 10 in the first five events, Pegher has rebounded with two straight runner-ups!
Montgomery, the 15-year-old West Virginia racer, has also turned up the heat with a fourth on June 8 at Dog Hollow followed by his second career Tour win a week ago. Sharon is the site of Montgomery’s first career Tour win last September when he became the youngest ever FASTRAK Touring winner at age 14!
John Over, who leads the K&N Dash points, is sixth in points in his first season on the Tour. Dan Angelicchio and Joe Martin are tied for seventh as Tour rookie Bobby Rohrer and Nolan Dalton complete the top 10.
The Northeast Touring Series has already had 123 different racers compete over the first seven events! One driver that will make his first Touring start of the season Saturday is Joel Prosser. The New Martinsville, West Virginia has competed off and on with the Series since 2009. Prosser was a good friend to Knollinger and has acquired the services of Knollinger’s former crew chief John Seyler.
Sharon added the FASTRAK Late Models on a weekly basis in 2011, and had the highest average car count in the nation. Meanwhile, the Touring Series has been featured 10 times at Sharon over the past three seasons with seven different winners! Max Blair, who won the Bill Emig Memorial Night 1 on May 26, is a three-time winner and enters as the defending winner of the Knollinger Memorial, while Josh Holtgraver is the only other repeat winner. Other Touring winners at Sharon include Mike Pegher, Jr., David Scott, the late Knollinger, George Kowatic, and Ryan Montgomery.
Sharon point leader, Will Thomas III of Sharpsville, Pa., is in his first full season of FASTRAK and has been off to a fast start with three Weekly Series wins and a trio of runner-up finishes. Thomas is currently 13th in Touring points and will look to improve that standing with another race at his home track. After finishing runner-up a week ago to Thomas, Matt Latta turned the tables beating Thomas for his first career win in Weekly Series action last Saturday at Sharon.
The “Wheelman” Bonus Event Challenge Series for non-qualifiers will be held in addition. Jason Genco, Louie Krushansky, Bob Dorman, Junior Peters, and Kyle Wiser have picked up the non-qualifier wins to date, while Jamie Brown leads the points. An amazing 19 different drivers have scored victories in the 22 races run all-time.
Of course all of the great contingency programs will be in full force. Besides the K&N “Cold Air Induction Dash” and fan giveaway, the Brake Man “Tough Brake of the Night”, Genesis Shocks “Top Dog of the Night”, Precise Racing Products “Pedal Down” Hard Charger, and the Utsinger’s Towing Hoosier Tire Giveaway will also take place. Decal packages will be again be available on Saturday for these programs. Drivers are reminded that decals are required to be eligible for these awards with the exception of The Brake Man.
Be sure to stop by the FASTRAK Northeast Apparel Trailer and Travel Boutique for all of the latest apparel, merchandise, and novelties. The new 2012 Fan Guide & Driver Handbook will also be on sale.
The FASTRAK Northeast Touring Series will return to Sharon on Saturday, July 21 for Sweeney Night paying $2,000 to-win plus the GM 604 engine. Saturday, August 18 will be huge night as not only will be “Manufacturers Night” paying $1,500 to-win with $15,000 of prizes to be given away, but it’ll also be the May 27 $1,500 to-win “Bill Emig Memorial” feature make-up that will determine the $1,500 point fund! The Touring Series final visit in 2012 at Sharon will be on Saturday, September 15 for the “Apple Festival Nationals”.
There have been 80 Northeast Touring Series races contested with 30 different winners all-time. Max Blair leads nemesis Mike Pegher, Jr. 17 to 14 followed by Dick Barton, Bobby Powell, John Lacki, and David Scott with four, Steve Dixon and Josh Holtgraver at three, Alan Dellinger, Dan Angelicchio, Joe Martin, Robbie Blair, and Ryan Montgomery with two, and Todd Andrews, Kyle Drum, Frank Guidace, Butch Lambert, Carl McKinney, Dennis Lunger, Jr., Tom Snyder, Jr., Chris Meadows, Jim Frank, Mike Blose, Jonathan Davenport, Gary Knollinger, Dusty Hamrick, Bud Watson, Russell King, George Kowatic, and Wayne Robertson with one victory.
Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC Northeast Touring Series Driver Points (must be Touring member to receive points): 1. Max Blair 261 2. Butch Lambert 219 3. Chad Ruhlman 216 4. Ryan Montgomery 213 5. Mike Pegher, Jr. 212 6. John Over 180 7. Dan Angelicchio & Joe Martin 152 9. Bobby Rohrer 133 10. Nolan Dalton 130 11. Brad Kling 124 12. Shane Weaver 119 13. Will Thomas 114 14. Lauren Longbrake 111 15. Jamie Brown 107 16. Chad Wright 105 17. Justin Tatlow 104 18. Steve Dixon 90 19. George Kowatic 88 20. Wayne Robertson & Josh Holtgraver 79 22. Matt Latta, Ricky Meglaye & Adam Sixt 68 25. Andrew Satterlee 67 26. Damian Bidwell 62 27. Andrew Wylie 55 28. Billy Henry, Jr. & Rick Singleton 52 30. Jason Knowles 47 31. Billy Stile, Jr. 44 32. Junior Peters 42 33. Tim Sears, Jr. & Mike Laughard 38 35. David Scott 33 36. Jorden Peters 32 37. Shane Bambarger 25 38. Eric Wilson 23 39. Brian Booher & Steve Beatty 22 41. Shane Hitt 21 42. Patrick Willar 19 43. Jon Lichy 18 44. Doug Horton & Robbie Blair 11 46. Scott Smith & Cody Dawson 10.
Sharon A Feature Payoff: 1. $2,000 2. $1,000 3. $625 4. $525 5. $450 6. $425 7. $400 8. $350 9. $325 10. $300 11. $275 12. $265 13. $250 14. $225 15. $215 16. $210 17. $205 18-24. $200.
Non-Qualifier B Feature Payoff: 1. $175 2. $150 3. $140 4. $135 5. $130 6. $125 7. $120 8. $115 9. $110 10-24. $105. $100 to any driver failing to start either feature.
Pit gates open at 4 p.m. with racing at 7. Pit passes are $30. There is a $100 entry fee. RACEceivers and transponders required for this event.
Sharon Speedway is owned by the Blaney, Weller, and Kirila Families and is a 3/8-mile dirt track located on Custer-Orangeville Road in Hartford, Ohio near the intersection of Routes 7 & 305. For more information, check out the website at www.sharonspeedway.com or call 330-772-5481.
2012 FASTRAK Northeast marketing partners include Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC, Pace Performance, Hoosier Tires, K&N Filters, The Brake Man, Utsinger’s Towing, Original Pizza Logs, Precise Racing Products, VP Fuels, Beyea Custom Headers, Genesis Shocks, H&H Racing Equipment, High Gear Speed Shop, Hyperco, Jake’s Golf Carts, Lincoln Electric, Wrisco Aluminum, and Wylie Race Cars.
You can reach co-directors Vicki Emig and Mike Leone at the FASTRAK Northeast office at 724-964-9300. E-mail to email@example.com and snail mail to 4368 Route 422, Pulaski, PA 16143. The office is open daily late mornings and after 1:30 p.m. For more information, check out the FASTRAK Northeast website at www.fastraknortheast.com. Become our fan on ******** at www.********.com/fastraknortheast and follow us on Twitter @FASTRAKNE
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