Jul 13, 2012 11:22 PM EDT
Donnie Lawson Returns to Black Rock Victory Lane for First Time This Season
Rich Vleck, DUNDEE, NY, (July 13, 2012)- Donnie Lawson’s dry spell at Black Rock Speedway this season had mirrored the mid-summer drought, but he proved why he is a three-time track champion with a definitive win Friday Night.
Lawson, of Woodhull, NY, started fourth in the 20-lap Hoselton Automall Sportsman Feature, but wasted no time driving to the front as he was even with Polesitter Gary Hotelling by the end of lap one and had the lead for good by the next time they came around.
Lawson’s pair of finishes outside the top 10 in the last three events put him up in the handicap process, so while he was able to jump to the front in very little time, the top four in points were mired deep in a stout field as the first 11 laps ran without caution.
Once the first caution came out, a total of four cautions would ensue over a four-lap stretch. The final coming on lap 15 when Brady Fultz and Ross Vleck, the top two in points entering the night, making just enough contact on the backstretch to result in the Vleck No. 83 spinning to the infield and out of the event.
In the final five lap segment, Lawson was once again perfect, driving away from the rest of the pack which was tightly-knit.
Gary Hotelling held on to second for the entire race until the final set of corners when a mechanical issue forced his No. 30 to slow, opening up the door for veterans Fran Hilton and Ray Bliss, who snuck through to capture second and third place, respectively. Hotelling would have to settle for fourth while Silvers claimed his first top five of the season.
For the second time in as many appearances this season, Tyler Walker scored the win in Original Pizza Logs 600 Sprint Tour Feature at Black Rock.
Walker, of North Tonawanda, dove underneath Nate Hendrix on a lap 14 restart and then drove away for his fourth tour win of the year, his seventh overall for 2012.
Walker, started in fourth, a position he held for the first half of the event. He took third place near halfway but struggled to get by leader Hendrix or Darryl Ruggles. Hendrix and Ruggles would clash for the lead though on lap eight and on the second-to-last restart there battle would move back to second as Walker drove on by in his No. 81.
Ruggles was able to hang on for second, as Ben Kysor drove up to third while Hendrix slid back to fourth. Colton Wilson would drive up to round out the top five.
Dylan Cecce entered the night tied for the street stock division lead for heat wins, but not until Friday Night did he break through and pick up his first feature win in his new division.
Cecce, the former bandit and defending 4-cylidner champion from Bath lead all 20 laps of the caution-free event to win by nearly a half-track in the No. 93. In the process the youngster became the fifth different winner in the division this season.
As Cecce was driving away to the win, the weekly battle between Bob Buono and Chris Fisher returned, but this time it was for second. Fisher got the best of Buono in the heat, while the No. 64 prevailed in the feature, scoring the runner-up by just a few feet at the finish line over Fisher, who would have to settle for third. Larry Fenton Jr. and Chuck Winslow completed the top five.
Mike Smith had a very different look to his No. 96 IMCA Modified on Friday, with an all-white car breaking the norm of his typically vibrant graphic design. Regardless of the look though, the defending champion regained his form and made it look easy.
Smith, of Arkport, led all 20 laps to earn his fourth win of the year at BRS. Rich Karlnoski gave chase but would have to settle for second. Point leader Phil Yaw made a final-corner pass on Bruce Tinsley to take home a third place effort.
With the top groove the preferred line around the speedway in the Signs Plus of Kanona 4-Cylinder Feature, Rich Sharpsteen II had no trouble driving to the front and then holding a steady lead for his fifth win of the year at his hometown track.
Sharpsteen started in eighth but was battling for the lead by the end of the first circuit. He was able to let his “Flyin’ X” drift through the corners without concern, as he would hold off Del Cummings, who ran a solid second. James Kreidler III drove under Erick Bell off the final corner for third while Jayson Smart completed the top five.
Adam DelGrosso completed a remarkable month of racing as he won his fourth race in a row in the FWD 4-Cylinder Class. DelGrosso took the lead on lap four and then drove away from the pack, keeping the car smooth on the bottom. Point leader Steve Rogers was able to capture second while Jamie Eldridge completed the podium.
For more information, visit www.BlackRockSpeedway.com.
Hoselton Auto Mall Crate Sportsman Feature (20 Laps)- DONNIE LAWSON, Fran Hilton, Ray Bliss, Gary Hotelling, Chris Silvers, Randy McCulloch, Brady Fultz, Chris Daugherty, Nicole Hoag, Scott Waters, Loren Lincoln, Brandon Butler, Brett Buono, Dale Welty, Joe Cook Jr., Josh Butler, Brent Ayers, John Agnew, Ross Vleck, Trevor Sutherland, Serenity Sutherland, Ryan Tracy, Larry Fenton (DNS).
Lap Leader- Hotelling 1, Lawson 2-20.
Heat Winners- Lincoln, Silvers, Hotelling.
Lap Leaders- Hendrix 1-13, Walker 14-20.
Heat Winners- Kysor, Wilson, Hendrix.
Lap Leaders- Cecce 1-20.
Heat Winners- Fisher, Cecce.
Lap Leaders- Smith 1-20.
Heat Winner- Yaw,
Signs Plus of Kanona/ Watkins Glen NAPA 4-Cylinder Feature (20 Laps)- RICH SHARPSTEEN II, Del Cummings, James Kreidler III, Erick Bell, Jayson Smart, Billy Cagle, Russ Wassner, Harold Fenton Jr., Joey Giardina, Chad Ayers, Chris Ayers, Matt Mashewske, Brad Rathbun, Mike Ziarno, Scott Bradley.
Lap Leaders- Cagle 1, Sharpsteen 2-20.
Heat Winners- Cummings, Sharpsteen
Front Wheel Drive 4 Cylinder Feature (12 Laps)- ADAM DelGROSSO, Steven Rogers, Jamie Eldridge, Alyssa Duby, Karl Werner, James Werner.