WOODHULL, NY – Season Championship Night sponsored by Kibbe Oil & Gas Field Services did not disappoint on Saturday night at Woodhull. Championships were settled, with four point races all being won by just a single point.
Two championships were won by the second place car winning their respective division’s feature event. Fans were treated to a fast-moving show as officials hurried the program to beat out forecasted rain that threatened the program.
In the headline Insinger Performance 370 Modifieds, Russell Morseman left absolutely no doubt that he was worthy of being a Woodhull Modified winner. Morseman encountered bad luck just a month ago, when it looked like he was going to pick up career victory number one. But a late race spin after contact dashed his hopes on that night.
Saturday would be far from the same script.
Morseman saw young Modified rookie Bryce Martin lead the opening lap, but Morseman quickly regrouped and passed Martin for the lead as they crossed the stripe on lap two. From that point- it was a full on Steuben County butt whipping as Morseman dominated the twenty-five-lap feature that went green-to-checkered.
Not even several fast lapped cars would slow Morseman down on this night. But nearly a full straightaway behind him, there was a battle royal taking place for the remaining podium positions.
Donnie Lawson quickly moved into second place on lap four and brought Jeffery Daugherty with him in the No. 22jz. Daugherty would tussle with Lawson for the runner up spot and in doing so, allowed eventual nineteen-time Woodhull Modified track champion Billy Van Pelt to close in and make it a three car battle by lap five.
Behind those three, Brady Fultz moved into the top five, making it four straight races that the Troyer Race Cars, Barney Moravec Water Wells, Huckles Towing No. 70 would finish in the top five. With five laps remaining Van Pelt, driving the Instant Heat Wood Pellets No. 13, would pass Daugherty for third after a spirited battle like fans saw the week before between these two for the win.
Morseman went on to his first career 370 Modified win over Lawson, Van Pelt, Daugherty and Fultz. Photographers had to grab the wide angle lenses for the mass of humanity that awaited to celebrate with Morseman in Woodhull’s makeshift Victory Lane used on this night to keep the program rolling to beat the weather.
Van Pelt would go on to win the 2017 Modified track championship, his nineteenth in his career at Woodhull. It was the fourth straight season he has won the championship and the fourth time that he has won a championship for Kevin and Karen Chilson’s race team.
In the NAPA Crate Sportsman division, there were two battles to watch over the course of the twenty-five-lap feature. The heat races provided plenty of entertainment as Stevie Hartman erased his three-point deficit to point leader Dale Welty, by winning their heat race and seeing Welty finish outside the top three. This left the Sportsman championship deadlocked in a tie come feature time.
Championship race aside, there was still a feature to be won and Tim Guild didn’t want to see the whole season pass by without making at least one stop to Instant Heat Wood Pellets Victory Lane. Guild quickly took the lead from front row starters Jerry Aldrich and David Mayo, but Mayo had a fast racecar after having some tough luck just one week ago.
Mayo and Dayton Brewer tagged along up front, but Brandon Butler was charging hard from his ninth place starting spot. Butler, who will end his season third in points, charged past Mayo and put a ton of pressure on Guild for the lead. Unfortunately, an incident on the frontstretch that collected Butler and Brewer would see Butler end his night nosed into the frontstretch sponsor signage.
While all of this was going on, all eyes were also on the point race between Welty and Hartman. Both were swept into their own crashes that set themselves back- Hartman in an early race jingle, suffering damage that had to be repaired under yellow in the pits. Welty made contact with Connor Brown in turn four that saw Welty’s front end fly through the air and come back down onto the Steuben County clay in a hard way.
Both drivers miraculously continued and found themselves bumper-to-bumper over the last five to ten laps battling for the championship. A late race restart cranked up the drama meter just a bit more, but at the checkered flag Guild had a win and Welty had finished one spot ahead of Hartman to take the championship by a point.
The finish is currently under protest, as both engines from Welty and Hartman have been pulled and will be taken this week to be dyno tested and torn down. Stay tuned to Woodhull’s social media accounts and website for further updates on the status of the inspection and official ruling.
The SWL Awards Crate Late Models came into Championship Night tied at the top of the leader board between Steve LeBarron and Kurt Stebbins. LeBarron would use the most important heat race win of his career and a third place finish by Stebbins in the heat, to carry a two-point lead into the twenty-lap feature.
John Waters left no doubt in the twenty-lap feature, winning by a wide margin over Stebbins. Stebbins was able to race by LeBarron for the runner up spot, but LeBarron knew all he needed to do was finish right where he was to lock up the track championship. LeBarron would win the championship by just one point over Stebbins when the final tallies were counted.
Waters was happy to secure another win, but was just as happy to see his teammate LeBarron lock up a title at Woodhull for the first year of the Crate Late Model division.
The most talked about championship battle going into Saturday at Woodhull was by far, the Joe Willcox Performance Automatics Street Stocks between Teddy Morseman and Dylan Cecce. Morseman carried a five-point margin into Championship Night, and would take the same advantage into the feature as Morseman and Cecce both won their heat races.
But the three-week handicap gave the advantage to Cecce, who would start in the third position as opposed to Morseman’s ninth starting spot. Branden Morseman jumped out front to lead the first three laps after the drop of Scott Lyon’s green flag.
But Cecce was on the charge, first getting by Dan Gardner and then making a move for the lead on Morseman on lap four. Cecce had to win the race, as the gap between first place and second was worth five points alone or finish at least five spots ahead of Morseman if he was going to come back to win.
Morseman fought hard from ninth, but each pass got harder and harder to make as each lap clicked off and he moved closer to the top five. He would climb as high as the third spot, but could not make a pass on Kurt Stebbins for the runner up position.
Cecce rolled away for the win and the track championship by just one point over Morseman. Stebbins finished second followed by Morseman, Gardner and another top five for “Mick The Quick” Seeley.
The Daugherty’s Auto Sales Mini Stock championship had already been decided weeks ago, but there was still a regular season feature to be decided and Williamsport, PA’s Karl Born finally got a win in 2017. Born stalked early race leader Corky Grant- who was running the final points event of his ‘Farewell Tour’ after forty years racing on the High Banks.
Born ran the bottom, while Grant rode the cushion with Born eventually using patience to finally clear Grant to lead at the halfway mark. Track champion for the second straight year, Chris Woodard, would work his way into the third spot and give Grant a hellacious battle for the runner up position. But Grant was up to the task.
In what has been a season of being just a tick off and enduring family loss, Born parked the blue No. 06 in Victory Lane where father Fred was happily waiting to greet him.
Earlier in the day, the Borns helped fellow Mini Stock racer Scott Lehman change his motor out and replace it with their spare motor to keep Lehman on track Saturday night. A classy move from one of the great teams in the pit area, who have also taken several youth drivers under their wing for advice and support.
Post-race, Grant got to drive a lap around “New York’s Toughest Bullring” backwards, giving a wave and a salute to Woodhull’s fans for forty great seasons of competition.
Shawn Gleason and Codie Baker decided the Woodhull Auto Supply Front Wheel Drive track championship on Saturday and they did it in the same fashion as they did in 2016. Gleason had to win the race to clinch the championship in 2016, but in 2017 it would be Baker who swept the heat and feature to make it a 1-1 tie in championships between the two powerhouse teams.
Baker started the night five points back of Gleason, but drew that down to four points after winning the heat over Gleason in second. They didn’t realize at the time just how important that one point would be later in the night.
Baker and Gleason started in the fifth row and worked to make their way through traffic in their quest for the lead. They joined ‘Captain America’ Todd West and Nick Brown’s No. 14x in the battle for the lead.
As the race wore on, Baker found the Bear’s Auto Body No. 14 in the lead and maintaining a steady advantage over Gleason. Gleason tried high line and low line to reel Baker in, and even had a chance during a late race restart to try and get by. But Baker was able to find some late season magic to win his sixth feature out of the last nine points-paying events to claim his first ever Woodhull title by a single marker.
Gleason, Nate Freeland, West and Brown rounded out the top five.
Dennis French beat out Jeredd Dennis in the ten-lap Hobby Stock feature, to pick up his first Woodhull win on Saturday night. Dennis was driving the car his father Carter drove to eleven victories and the Hobby Stock track championship.
Aaron Miller, Joe Birdsall and Brent Williams rounded out the five car field.
Carter Crooker claimed his second career Woodhull victory in the Daugherty’s Auto Sales Warrior division. Crooker piloted Chris Woodard’s No. 97, after his own No. 32 mount suffered heavy damage a few weeks ago. Crooker had to hold off the advances of Brody Amidon, who finished his season second in points on a very high note.
Garrett Wilson was aboard the McClain Racing No. 53b to finish on the podium. Dustin Skinner made his return to Woodhull to finish fourth in a photo finish with Wilson. Ronnie Dailey closed out his 2017 campaign with a solid top five in the Chip Warner No. 73.
Cole Youse had a bout of tough luck with a flat tire early in the event, but came back out two laps down to finish off his first Woodhull track championship. Youse made it a double championship season, after sewing up the Bandits track championship in Dundee, NY just 24 hours prior.
Though the point races are now all settled, there are still several Fall specials coming up to close out the 2017 season at “New York’s Toughest Bullring.”
This coming Saturday at Woodhull Raceway is the annual Lyle Sherwood Memorial for the Big Block/Small Block Modifieds, paying $1,700 to the winner. Also on the card will be Crate Sportsman, Crate Late Models, Open Street Stocks, Woodhull rules Mini Stocks, Woodhull rules Front Wheel Drives and the Woodhull Warriors all presented by Griffith Energy.
Race fans should note that Saturday’s show will start earlier than normal at 5:30PM.
Pit gates will open at 3:00, with pit passes carrying a $30 fee. Grandstands will open at 3:30 for $15 general admission. Seniors 65+ and ages 8-12 will be $8. Children 7 and under are always free at Woodhull Raceway and there is free camping on the grounds.
Race fans are encouraged to sign up for the fastest alerts from Woodhull Raceway’s Rained Out Alert system by sending the text message “WoodhullAlert” to 84483, message and data rates may apply.
For more information race over to www.woodhullraceway.com, Like Woodhull Raceway on Facebook at www.facebook.com/WoodhullRaceway or Follow Woodhull on Twitter @WoodhullPR.
Woodhull Raceway is located in Woodhull, NY, just 30 minutes West of Corning, NY and competes weekly on Saturday nights from mid-April through Labor Day Weekend. The track offers several special events including the Patriot Sprint Tour 360 Sprints and the Short Track Super Series Modifieds in late-August.
Woodhull Raceway Kibbe Oil Night Official Results September 2nd, 2017
INSINGER PERFORMANCE MODIFIEDS, 12 cars (25 laps): RUSSELL MORSEMAN (1st Career Modified Win), Donnie Lawson, Billy Van Pelt, Jeffery Daugherty, Brady Fultz, Dillon Groover, Brian Doolittle, Art Goodier, Kenny Peoples Jr., Bryce Martin, Bob Silvernail, Frank Dunning
H1: Billy Van Pelt, Kenny Peoples Jr., Donnie Lawson
H2: Brady Fultz, Frank Dunning, Brian Doolittle
**2017 Track Champion: Billy Van Pelt**
NAPA CRATE SPORTSMAN, 19 cars (25 laps) **UNOFFICIAL PENDING TECH**: TIM GUILD (1), AJ Costley, Dale Welty (pending tech), Stevie Hartman III (pending tech), David Mayo, Jake Dgien, Josh Keesey, Brian Doolittle, Jerry Aldrich, Jordan Bacon, Dayton Brewer, Blake Lawson, Kirk Reynolds, Ajay Potrzebowski Jr., John Austin, Brandon Butler, Connor Brown, Clay Wheat, Stacey Jackson
H1: Dayton Brewer, Tim Guild, Jake Dgien
H2: Connor Brown, Josh Keesey, David Mayo
H3: Stevie Hartman III, Brandon Butler, Brian Doolittle
**2017 Track Champion (pending tech): Dale Welty by 1 point**
SWL AWARDS CRATE LATE MODELS, 7 cars (20 laps): JOHN WATERS (9), Kurt Stebbins, Steve LeBarron, Darin Horton, Jamie Freeman, Randy Ralyea, Jason McGregor
H1: Steve LeBarron, John Waters, Kurt Stebbins
**2017 Track Champion: Steve LeBarron by 1 point**
JOE WILLCOX PERFORMANCE AUTOMATICS STREET STOCKS, 12 cars (20 laps): DYLAN CECCE (7), Kurt Stebbins, Teddy Morseman, Dan Gardner, Mick Seeley, Russell Morseman, Brett Marlatt, Jeredd Dennis, Jim Weatherley, Billy Giles, Tracy Dunn, Jim Buck Jr.
H1: Teddy Morseman, Kurt Stebbins, Branden Morseman
H2: Dylan Cecce, Brett Marlatt, Dan Gardner
**2017 Track Champion: Dylan Cecce by 1 point**
DAUGHERTY AUTO SALES MINI STOCKS, 11 cars (20 laps): KARL BORN (1), Corky Grant, Chris Woodard, Chip Warner, Rick Amidon, Dylon Gleason, Jason Ketrow, Bob Hauber, Derrick Puryear, Scott Lehman, John Hand Jr., Danielle Thomas
H1: Chip Warner, Jason Ketrow, Karl Born
H2: Bob Hauber, Dylon Gleason, Chris Woodard
**2017 Track Champion: Chris Woodard**
WOODHULL AUTO SUPPLY FWD, 12 cars (20 laps): CODIE BAKER (8), Shawn Gleason, Nate Freeland, Todd West, Nick Brown, Scott Lehman Jr., Luke Hoffner, Robert Gardner, Greg Moldt, Brendan Schweigart, Ryan Stermer DNS: Matt Prescott
H1: Nate Freeland, Todd West, Ryan Stermer
H2: Codie Baker, Shawn Gleason, Nick Brown
**2017 Track Champion: Codie Baker by 1 point**
DAUGHERTY AUTO SALES & SERVICE WARRIORS, 11 cars (10 laps): CARTER CROOKER (2), Brody Amidon, Garret Wilson, Dustin Skinner, Ronnie Dailey, Austin Labar, Dylon Morseman, Trevor Hamilton, Cole Youse, Noah Talada, Brooke McClain
**2017 Track Champion: Cole Youse**
HOBBY STOCKS, 5 cars (10 laps): DENNIS FRENCH (1st Woodhull Win), Jeredd Dennis, Aaron Miller, Joe Birdsall, Brent Williams
**2017 Track Champion: Carter Dennis**