Two In A Row For Mitchell; Kostelnik Clinches at Motordrome
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SMITHTON, PA (Sept. 2) - Richard Mitchell won a battle of the most dominant drivers in the Napa NASCAR Super Late Model feature, for his second consecutive victory on Friday night September 2, at Motordrome Speedway. In other NASCAR Dodge Weekly Racing Series action, Adam Kostelnik clinched his second straight Smail Pontiac-GMC Modified Championship with his seventh feature win, joining Dave Tavormina (Subway Street Stocks) and Jimmy Stokes (Yellow Book Chargers) as repeat winners. Matt Gardner earned his first career victory in the Advance Auto Parts American Flyers division. Operationfiresafe.org distributed free smoke detectors to fans as well, on Emergency Personnel Night.
Former Pro Truck racer Dan Lewis muscled his way into the lead at the start of the 35-lap Napa NASCAR Super Late Model feature event, passing front-row starter Chad Hemphill and first-time visitor Mike Smith. On lap two, fifth-starting Shawn Pilla moved into second behind Lewis, then took command of the event on lap three. Brandon Manns started fourth and was second by lap four, while Pilla marched away from the field with a healthy lead. By lap eight, eleventh-starting Bobby Henry was third behind Manns, and twelfth-starting Rick Miller was fourth. While dueling for second on lap 13, Manns was tapped by Henry, and the contact sent Henry spinning at the exit of turn two. Three laps after the restart, points-leader Miller grabbed second from Manns, while thirteenth-starting Richard Mitchell had climbed to fourth. Still maintaining a comfortable lead over Miller in the quest for his first-career victory, Pilla’s night came to end when his car inexplicably darted into the outside wall on the front straight, showering the speedway with sparks and suspension parts. Pilla walked away from his car, which was removed by a pair of tow trucks. Miller inherited the lead for the lap 19 restart, with Mitchell second and Manns third, ahead of ninth starting Jon Messenger. Mitchell took the lead from Miller on lap 23, and quickly distanced himself from the defending champion. But, in the final five circuits, Miller closed dramatically on Mitchell, setting the stage for a memorable battle of the division’s leading winners. Six-time victor Miller, looked inside of Mitchell in turn four of the final lap, racing up to the numbers on Mitchell’s door and bringing the fans to their feet. At the finish line Mitchell scored his eighth win of the season by less than a car-length, driving the Howard Concrete Pumping/Martinelli’s Auto/Tom Clark Chevrolet. Behind Miller in second, Henry recovered from his spin to beat Manns for third, and Messenger held on to fifth. Top Dog Challenge Dash winner Garry Wiltrout and Henry won the heat races.
Adam Kostelnik, leading feature winner in the Smail Pontiac-GMC Modifieds, locked up his second consecutive Motordrome Speedway Track Championship, with two nights of points races remaining. Starting on the pole, Kostelnik admitted that he "took it easy," in leading all 20-laps, but was perhaps overly cautious. In the final laps, rookie Bob Shipp gained on Kostelnik, and was mere car-lengths away from a first career win, placing second at the wave of the checkered flag. Joining Shipp with an impressive podium finish was Matt Panaia, who also seeks his first feature victory. Beau Glemba, second in the point standings, placed fourth in the event and Ohio teenager Tom Frank earned his first top five finish of the season, as a rookie. Kostelnik, and recent weeks’ hot shoe John Pribanich won the heat races while George P. Nicola was the Valvoline Hard Charger Award winner.
In Subway Street Stock action, Robin Rimel was chosen at random as the "Subway Challenge Driver," making him eligible to earn every fan at Motordrome a free six-inch meatball sub. Rimel led the first eleven laps in the attempt, but succumbed to the pressure of Dave "The Hammer" Tavormina who started seventh. As the pair of multi-feature winners swapped the lead, points leader Frank Turek battled Andrew Kostelnik for third, securing the position on lap 15 after starting tenth. Turek would advance to a distant second earning the Valvoline Hard Charger Award behind Tavormina, with Rimel third, and Kostelnik fourth. Eleventh-starting Bill Ashton advanced six spots to finish fifth. Bill Henry and Turek won the heats.
Jimmy Stokes established a goal of five wins for his team in 2005, and achieved the mark by dominating the 15-lap Yellow Book Charger feature. Tracy Keller, second in the championship standings was second in the event, with point leader Jeff Giles placing third, and advancing the most positions to be named Valvoline Hard Charger. Bryan Shipp and Denny Keller completed the top five. Stokes, who contemplated retirement in victory lane, won his heat race as well.
A first time winner parked in victory lane after Advance Auto Parts American Flyers feature event. Matt Gardner started on the pole, and led every lap for the big win, after also winning his heat. He held off a late race challenge from five-time winner Richie Miller, who placed second in the feature after starting seventh. Valvoline Hard Charger Ed Dinneen, the points leader, placed third after starting ninth and Aaron Minjock placed fourth. Gene Greco recovered from an early spin to finish fifth.
This Friday, September 9 is geared towards kids and highway safety as it is Kid's Bike Race Night and Allstate Insurance / AAA Buckle Up Night at the Speedway. With only the title for the Smail Modifieds clinched, the chase to the division championships continues for the Napa Late Models, Subway Street Stocks, Yellow Book Chargers and Advance Auto Parts American Flyers. For more information regarding the racing at Motordrome, visit our web site at Motordrome.com or call the business office at 724-853-7223.
MOTORDROME SPEEDWAY RACE RESULTS – September 2, 2005
Napa Late Models –
Top Dog Challenge Winner: Garry Wiltrout
Valvoline Oil Hard Charger: Richard Mitchell
Heat Race Winners: Bobby Henry, Garry Wiltrout
Feature (35 Laps): 1. Richard Mitchell, 2. Rick Miller, 3. Bobby Henry, 4. Brandon Manns, 5. Jon Messenger, 6. Garry Wiltrout, 7. John Komarinski, 8. Dan Lewis, 9. Mike Adams, 10. Chad Hemphill, 11. Steve Black, 12. Shawn Pilla, 13. Mike Smith
Smail Pontiac GMC Modifieds –
Valvoline Oil Hard Charger: George Nicola
Heat Race Winners: John Pribanich, Adam Kostelnik
Feature (20 Laps): 1. Adam Kostelnik, 2. Robert Shipp, 3. Matt Panaia 4. Beau Glemba, 5. Tom Frank, 6. John Pribanich, 7. Mike Bakalon, 8. George Nicola, 9. Jim Nicola, 10. Al Sivik, 11. Rick Huffman, 12. Ben Easler, 13. Harry Opfer
Subway Street Stocks –
Valvoline Oil Hard Charger: Frank Turek
Heat Race Winners: Frank Turek, Bill Henry
Feature (20 Laps): 1. Dave Tavormina, 2. Frank Turek, 3. Robin Rimel, 4. Andrew Kostelnik, 5. Bill Ashton, 6. Shawn Phillips, 7. Bill Henry, 8. Vince Kaider, 9. Lonnie Hoffman, 10. Max Schlessinger, 11. Jason Holder, 12. Richard Burbidge, 13. Jonathan Hileman, 14. Jamie Shipley
Yellow Book Chargers –
Valvoline Oil Hard Charger: Jeff Giles, Jr.
Heat Race Winners: Jim Stokes
Feature (15 Laps): 1. Jim Stokes, 2. Tracy Keller, 3. Jeff Giles, Jr., 4. Bryan Shipp, 5. Denny Keller, 6. Cliff Abbott, 7. Rick Broadwater, 8. Harold Hunt, 9. Bob Garchak, Jr. 10. Victor Keller, 11. Garry Ankrom
Advance Auto Parts American Flyers –
Valvoline Oil Hard Charger: Ed Dinneen
Heat Race Winners: Matt Gardner
Feature (8 Laps): 1. Matt Gardner, 2. Richie Miller, 3. Ed Dinneen, 4. Aaron Minjock, 5. Gene Greco, 6. Roger Bryan, 7. William Oldham, 8. Kevin J Ludwick, 9. Larry Vance.