By: Steve Pados, Accord Speedway Media
The summer, if you call what we had was a summer, quickly turned to fall-like conditions yesterday at the Accord Speedway as the rain came in and went and cool weather filled up the rest of the evening. Nevertheless, the Catskills Mountains of New York State provided the backdrop for a great Friday evening as the Accord Speedway presented it’s “Night of Champions” to a large enthusiastic crowd on hand for the event. All track champions were crowned in the final evening of points at the speedway for the 2017 racing season. The over the top event was sponsored by Upstate Auto (www.upstateautoinc.com) and featured a sensational evening paying tribute to all First Responders. The event portion for the First Responders was headed up by Jim Slinsky and the Ulster County Sheriff’s Office K9 Team. An over the top presentation featuring music, bag pipes, 21 gun salute, narration, echoing bugles and a tremendous number of fire trucks and emergency equipment filled the speedway. The show was brought to a climactic close with an another fireworks extravaganza from Santore’s Famous Fireworks.
The event brought out a nice field of drivers and racing equipment as the event served a dual purpose for the drivers who will be entering the spectacular “King of the Catskills” events scheduled for Friday, September 15th. When the final checkered flag fell from starter Jonathan McGibbons, new champions were crowned for five of the divisions for the 2017 racing season. Accord Speedway was the Checkered Flag bonus sponsor.
Heading up the list of champions is “Showtime” Danny Tyler who enjoyed a great 2017 season and finished strongly to capture the United Pump and Tank Modified division title. “The Bushkill Bullet” Kyle Rohner fought off a myriad of mid season problems to capture four wins during the season on his way to his third Accord Speedway title in the Arkel Motors Sportsmen division. “The High Side Hustler” Eric Jennings put his stamp onto the speedway title in the WRWD Radio NEWS Sprint Car division. The pure stock racers had as many as five drivers vying for the title and they raced hard throughout the season but it would be Travis Brockner winning the title in the hotly contested Upstate Auto Pure Stock division to earn his first driving title at Accord. “The Cold Spring Kid” Jake Mason enjoyed a break-out season with eight wins to capture the Want Ad Digest Junior Slingshot title.
The racing action during the evening was hot and heavy on the speedway with a few of the track titles still on the line. “The DC Express” Danny Creeden went out and borrowed a hot rod during the week from fellow racer Chad Loidice and was fast and furious as he captured his third win of the season in the United Pump and Tank Modifieds. “The Otisville Outlaw” Corey Cormier had a fast set of wheels under him as he claimed his second win of the season in the Arkel Motors Sportsman finale. Livy Johnson struggled through a season when she was involved in a mid-season accident in which she suffered a foot injury and was on the shelf for a spell but she put all of the pieces together to capture her first win of the season in the Upstate Auto Pure Stock headliner. “Captain Quick” Jeremy Quick dominated the action to win his third feature of the season in Sprint Car action. Jayden Sleight inherited the lead when Jake Mason suffered mechanical difficulties to capture his second win of the season in the Junior Slingshot feature event. “The Hurricane” Hunter Lapp found a seam to drive to the lead and go and capture his second win of the season in the Rookie Sportsman finale.
The United Pump and Tank Modified division found the veteran Richie Eurich lead lap one of the 30-lap event but fifth starting Danny Creeden hustled and bustled his way into the runner-up slot and grabbed up the lead by lap two. Racing through the field came Andy Bachetti as the wild child started twelfth but was in the top four in just a few laps. By the time Bachetti moved into second, Creeden had checked out on the field. A skirmish or tow slowed the action and brought Bachetti to the back bumper of Creeden for the restarts but Creeden was in the zone and raced to his third win of the season at Accord. Bachetti was second in a great drive while Jimmy Wells raced from 14th to third. Danny Tyler was fourth and Richie Eurich finished fifth. Heading up the second five were Mike Ricci, Kyle VanDuser, Brad Rothaupt, Rich Ricci Jr and Richard Smith.
The WRWD Radio NEWS Sprint Car feature found Jeremy Quick grabbing up the lead at the start of event. Quick was quick and was all business as he opened up a sizeable lead through the first half of the race. A caution for the disabled car of Larry McVay slowed the action but on the restart again it would be Quick in command all of the way to his third win of the season. Andrew Davis was second with Bobby Tersillo, Eric Jennings and Corey Wood completing the field.
The Upstate Auto Pure Stock finale proved to be an exciting as well as entertaining event as Livy Johnson jumped into the early lead with sixth starting Bob Sleight finding the topside to his liking as he worked hard to get into the runner-up slot. While the leaders went nose to tail the rest of the way, the drivers vying for the track crown waged a wicked war behind them. Johnson would hold off Sleight to capture her first win of the season while Ray Tarantino would finish third, Travis Brockner fourth and Emerson Cargain fifth. Brockner with his finish would win the title by a mere two points. John Hechinger, Steve Williams, Steven Kanuk, Harry Bachman and Gary Gamble completed the top ten.
Corey Cormier raced into the lead at the start of the Sportsman feature and even though that proved to be the winning move, he would face heavy resistance the rest of the way from the new champion Kyle Rohner. Rohner tried high and he tried low to slip past Cormier but Cormier ran a great raced to capture his second win of the season. Rohner was second with the returning Greg McCloskey running strong from 15th to finish third. Cole Hentschel continued his great work in fourth and Dave Demorest was a solid fifth. Matt Shultz headed up the second five with Nick Plumstead, Tyler Johnston, Joey Bonetti and Jamie Yannone completing the top ten. .
Jake Mason grabbed the lead at the start of the Junior Slingshot feature and would find Jayden Sleight putting the pressure on him from the opening bell. As the laps clicked off the pair remained close and with a couple of laps remaining Mason broke and handed the win to Sleight for his second win of the season.
Kevin Stevens used his outside pole position start to grab the lead at the start of the Rookie Sportsman feature. Stevens would go on to lead past the halfway mark when a a very quick Hunter Lapp found a seam between two slower cars to drive into the lead and go on to win his second feature of the season. Stevens would finish second with Jeff Higham doing great work for third, Vinny Visconti fourth and John Brown rounding out the top five. John Miller, Jared Miller, Alex VanPelt, Brian Durban and Austin Helmich completed the top ten.
Despite the weather, under the tutelage of Promoter Gary Palmer, help from many divisions at the speedway got the track in real good racing trim. Even though the show began late, the speedway staff along with the First Responders Staff put all of the components together to offer the fans a night to remember
The talented roster of drivers tested the many racing channels of the speedway throughout the evening in preparation for the blockbuster “King of the Catskills” spectacular coming up on September 15th and sponsored by Insinger Fuels.
The speedway took an extended intermission period to pay tribute to all of the First Responders who work so diligently to keep our home security safe. Headed up by Jim Slinsky and the Ulster County Sheriff’s Office K9 Team, many pieces of equipment came out onto the speedway in darkness and hoisted a 70 foot US Flag through the use of ladder trucks and at the designated moment all lights came on and put up an amazing display that covered the speedway and the entire infield area. Many thanks are in order to all of those who played a part in putting the spectacular event together. Santore’s Famous Fireworks once again lit up the sky with their over the top fireworks extravaganza. DVD Copies of the entire salute to the First Responders are available through Videographer Tom Czaban and can be ordered by phone at: 518-250-0001.
Taking part in the ceremony were: Accord, Ellenville, Tillson, Sawkill, Hurley, Kerhonkson, Rosendale, Stone Ridge, Craigsmoor, Napanoch and Saxton Fire Departments, Ulster County Fire Coordinator, Kerhonkson-Accord First Aid, Ellenville Rescue Squad, Esopus EMS, Ulster County Sheriff’s Office, Chris Benson on Bag Pipes, The Bruderhoff Choir, Steve Snyder from the Army National Guard on Bugle and Red Zimmerman form the Bruderhoof on Bugle. Special thanks to DJ Tim Adams for his work in the project and the great patriotic music.
Special thanks are in order to those who donated to the fireworks including RJ Smith Enterprises, Ulster Firearms, Advance Concrete Foundations, Kingston Nissan with Rob Rolleri and Easton Gregory, Upstate Auto, Rapid Tire, Len Bernardo and all of the First Responders.
“Uncle Mike” Hansen from WRWD Radio was back on board last evening with the WRWD Radio show truck and once again joined announcers Steve Pados and Tim Adams in the tower. Mike thanked promoters Gary and Donna Palmer for their hospitality as he thoroughly enjoys the great racing action taking place on the speedway.
Jerry Fornino was on hand to explain the flag flying at the speedway last evening. Jerry is a retired FBI agent and was at the first bombing of the World Trade Center in 1993 and on 911 in 2001. The flag flying was flown in front of the trade center grounds on February 26, 2003.
Happy birthday wishes go out to Lisa Agate from the Dibble Family and Accord Speedway.
Miss Motorsports, Taylor Albert was on hand at the speedway last evening helping in the victory lane presentations. She also interviewed with track announcer Steve Pados in regards to her reign as Miss Motorsports for 2017.
Heat race action in the Modifieds found Joe Judge, Jesse Marks and Danny Creeden capturing victories. Mike Senecal, Matt Shultz and Cole Hentschel scored heat wins in the Sportsman action. The Pure Stock heats went to Ray Tarantino and Travis Brockner. Eric Jennings captured the Sprint Car heat win. Rookie heat wins went to John Brown and Hunter Lapp.
Grandma Ann’s Pies were a big hit with all of the feature winners and two were raffled off during the 50/50. Many thanks to Vinny Visconti Racing for the hat donation and to WRWD for the shirts.
United Pump & Tank Modifieds: Danny Creeden, Andy Bachetti, Jimmy Wells. Danny Tyler, Richie Eurich, Mike Ricci, Kyle VanDuser, Brad Rothaupt, Rich Ricci Jr, Richard Smith, Ed Dachenhausen, Kevin Ward, Eddie Burgess, Tommy Johnson, Joe Judge, Alissa Cody, Scott Ferrier, Kevin Krom, Jesse Marks, Ken Ferrier, Joey Bruning
Arkel Motors Sportsman: Cory Cormier, Kyle Rohner, Greg McCloskey, Cole Hentschel, Dave Demorest, Matt Shultz, Nick Plumstead, Tyler Johnston, Joey Bonetti, Jamie Yannone, Nick Johnson, Tony Kowalchuk, Ryan McCartney, Anthony Recchio, Mike Senecal, Rich Ricci III, Lenny Helmich, Leo Fotopolous
WRWD Radio NEWS Sprint Cars: Jeremy Quick, Andrew Davis, Bob Tersillo, Eric Jennings, Corey Wood, Larry McVay
Upstate Auto Pure Stocks: Livy Johnson, Bob Sleight, Ray Tarantino, Travis Brockner, Emerson Cargain Jr, John Hechinger, Steve Williams, Steve Kanuk, Harry Bachman, Gary Gamble, John Drake, Jay Smalley, Ryan Brockner
WRWD Radio Rookie Sportsman: Hunter Lapp, Kevin Stevens, Jeff Higham, Vinny Visconti, John Brown, John Miller, Jared Miller, Alex VanPelt, Brian Durban, Austin Helmich, Fred Smith, John DeWitt, Brandon Daley
Want Ad Digest Junior Slingshots: Jaden Sleight, Jake Mason
Racing is on tap every Friday night at Accord Speedway from April through September. Please make note of the new starting times: Pit Gates open at 5:00; Spectator Gates open at 5:30; Hot Laps begin at 7:00 and the racing begins at 7:30 PM. Admission for Adults $14.00; Seniors (65+) $12.00; Children $3.00 (11+ under) Indoor Seating $20.00; Family four pack special: 2 Adults + 2 Children and $20.00 in Accord Bucks for $44.00 (a savings of $10.00)
Special event shows do have an increase in admission.
The next event at Accord will be September 15th as the grandaddy of all Accord events, “The King of the Catskills” will take place, sponsored by Insinger Fuels and offering up a huge $5,000.00 pay day to the winner. The Joe Giachinta Memorial for the Sportsman will offer up $1,500.00 to the winner and the Emmanuel’s Marketplace Four Cylinders with as much as $2,000.00 on the line will close the show. Additional information for the event will follow.