By STEVE PADOS
ACCORD, NY – The always popular King of the Catskills event at the Accord Speedway will be a great way to cap off a solid year of racing events in the Catskill Mountains as some big names in the Northeastern Modified ranks are set to converge on the tiny village of Accord, New York this coming Friday night, September 15th to go head to head in a sixty lap battle royal and ultimately be named the King of the event and along with it a big $5,000.00 payday offered up by Accord Speedway Promoters Gary and Donna Palmer. The expected huge crowd will have the opportunity to many of their favorite local stars in action on the always pristine, semi-banked quarter mile speedplant as three divisions of racing have been selected to work their magic out on the raceway. As always, the hard working Accord Promoter Gary Palmer has been feverishly at task to attend to his duties to give the the talented combatants a moist and tacky track surface they can race from wall to wall throughout the evening. The event is sponsored by Insinger Performance and Sunoco Race Fuels located in Dushore, Pennsylvania.
The evening of speed will bring out the United Pump and Tank sponsored mighty modifieds in a sixty lap excursion as the hometown aces of the Accord Speedway will defend the home turf against the anticipated invaders of the Northeastern Modified world. The evening will bring in the King of the Catskills 60 lap event Modified event that will pay $5,000.00 to the first driver under the checkered flag at the end of 60 laps of the hard driving excitement. “The Chairman of the Board” Rich Ricci Jr captured the 2016 event with a wire to wire triumph to earn his fourth King of the Catskills victory. Ricci took some time off during the 2017 racing season but when the big money is on the line Ricci can always be counted on to be at the finish.
The opposition will be equally as strong as from Sheffield, Massachusetts, “The Wild Child” Andy Bachetti is coming off a superb season in which he captured the 2017 Afton Speedway track championship and will be making a return to the speedway for the event. Bachetti is a two-time track champion at Accord, a past winner of the King of the Catskills and in a couple of appearances at Accord in 2017 came away with a win and a runner-up finish.
Accord Speedway offers some great in-house driving talent as the newly crowned United Pump and Tank track champion, “Showtime” Danny Tyler will defend the home turf as the 2017 speedway champion. Tyler enjoyed a great season in 2017 with two wins behind the wheel of the family owned potent Doug Tyler & Son/Chief Enterprises sponsored hot rod and was consistent all season long to earn his first Modified speedway title. “The DC Express” Danny Creeden captured the final points feature event to give him three wins on the year as he finished runner-up in the points chase and served notice he is prepped and ready for this week’s event. “Little” Richard Smith captured one win during the season and enjoyed his best season at the speedway with a strong third place at the title. “Primetime” Scott Ferrier went winless during the season but great finishes landed him fourth in points and no one can count out “Jammin” Jimmy Wells as the 2016 Sportsman Champion transitioned into the Modifieds and captured two wins while nailing down a fifth place in the final points tally.
“The Marksman” Jesse Marks was sixth in points while “Gentleman” Ed Dachenhausen captured one win and finished seventh in points. “Double J” Joe Judge had a fast hot rod during the last half of the season and vaulted into eighth place in points. “The Legend” Richie Eurich finished ninth in points even though he missed a few weeks and has continuously shown he still has plenty of moxie and talent to win races. Rounding out the top ten in points was the “KF Flier” Kenny Ferrier as even though he suffered through some tough luck during the season he still managed to finish in the top ten.
“Iron” Mike Ricci also took some time off in 2017 to assist his Nephew Jimmy Wells. Mike is a master of the short track real estate and will be well prepared for the King of the Catskills headliner, an event he has captured twice in the past.
The Modified roster at Accord is very diverse with lots of talent throughout the ranks with names such as “The Rhinebeck Rocket” Brad Rothaupt, Kyle VanDuser, former Sportsman champion Kevin Ward, Eddie Burgess, Tommy Johnson, Alissa Cody and Mark Pullen. Many others will be showcased as they do their best earn their way into the starting feature line-up and looking for the $5,000.00 pot of gold in the WRWD Radio Victory Lane.
Brian Krummel captured the opening night victory at Accord and is expected to return, while “The Statesman” Jerry Higbie also picked up a win in limited appearances and is a three time champion at Accord and former winner of the KotC event. The 2016 Speedway Champion, “The Montgomery Missile” Anthony Perrego also picked up a win in limited appearances at Accord this season and will be returning for the event.
The Arkel Motors Sportsman will be in action and pointing towards a $1,500.00 prize as the speedway offers a memorial event to one of the truly good guys in racing, Joe Giachinta. Joe lost his life last year in an industrial accident after the season ended but was instrumental in assisting the Accord Speedway with his innovative Redi Rock International concrete blocks that make up the speedway’s retaining barriers from turn three all of the way into turn one. Joe competed at Accord since 2003 and his missing name on the driving roster is heart breaking to everyone who knew him. Joe assisted with the career of “Jumpin” John McGill and followed up by helping Sportsman racer Brandon McGill and Junior Slingshot racer Jake Mason.
The new crowned Sportsman track champion “The Bushkill Bullet” Kyle Rohner will head up a top flight contingent of drivers seeking to pull off the big win. Rohner earned four wins during the season in his Advanced Concrete sponsored racer to earn his third track title at Accord. Plenty of competition will arrive to try to work their magic out on the speedway as runner-up in the points chase Tony Kowalchuk earned two wins during the season and was in contention for the title until the final event. Former National Junior Slingshot Champion, “The Tornado” Tyler Johnston, has been strong all season long and an emerging star at the speedway. “Kid Ice” Cole Hentschel earned a win late in the season and has really stepped up his game and will be a contender on Friday. “The Otisville Outlaw” Corey Cormier captured two wins during the season and a threat to win any event. Additional drivers looking to climb the pedestal on Friday include Matt Shultz, Jimmy Johnson, Nick Johnson, Nick Plumstead, Brandon McGill, Rich Ricci III, Dave Demorest, Jamie Yannone, Leo Fotopolous, Mike Senecal, Anthony Recchio and the recent return of “The Kingston Cruiser” Greg McCloskey.
The thrill a second Emmanuel’s Marketplace Four Cylinder Enduro gang will also be a part of the race card. One hundred laps of racing on the Accord clay will determine the winner of the $2,000.00 prize offered up by the speedway. There have been five events in 2017 with Johnny Bankich winning the opener and then Dave Donovan captured the next four events. Gene Helms has been a steady runner all season long and just may be the spoiler in the long distance event.
The King of the Catskills event has been a true test for the hometown stars
of the speedway as the local talent has been successful in holding their own against many of the outside invaders. The event began in 2005 and has shown a great history of tremendous battles between both outside competition and the track regulars. Rich Ricci Jr is the defending champion of the event and the following results range from 2016 to 2005, showing the many great names that have been victorious or have enjoyed great runs at the facility.
2016 King of the Catskills: (60 laps $5,000.00) Rich Ricci, Jimmy Horton, Mike Ricci, Jeff Strunk, Tommy Meier, Brian Krummel, Andy Bachetti, Nick Rochinski, Donnie Elliott, Danny Tyler, Scott Ferrier, Jesse Marks, Nick Petrilak, Rob Rowe, Brian Malcolm, Ed Dachenhausen, Richie Eurich, Joey Grammes, Danny Creeden, Anthony Perrego, Jimmy Wells, Bobby Trapper Jr, Mike Colsten, Mike Kolka
2015- King of the Catskills Modifieds: Jeff Strunk, Jeff Heotzler Sr, Scott Ferrier, Mike Mahaney, Danny Johnson, Andy Bachetti, Richard Smith, Joe Judge, Craig Mitchell, Robbie Green, Corey Lowitt, Nick Rochinski, Jimmy Wells, Dave Hinsch, Danny Creeden, Anthony Perrego, Matt Janiak, Tommy Meier, Danny Tyler, Shaun Walker, Dan Humes, Tim Hindley, Chuck McKee, Mike Ricci
2014- King of the Catskills Modifieds: Mike Ricci, Jackie Brown, Rich Ricci, Jeff Strunk, Danny Creeden, Tommy Meier, Danny Tyler, Chuck McKee, Jeff Heotzler Sr, John Ferrier, Nick Rochinski, Richie Eurich, Ray Jashembowski, Mike Mahaney, Tommy Johnson, Scott Ferrier, Andy Bachetti, Brett Hearn, Bobby Hentschel, Mike DuBois, Jeff Heotzler Jr, Anthony Perrego, Chris Shultz, Richard Smith, Darrell Ford
2013- King of the Catskills Modifieds: Jackie Brown, Danny Johnson, Anthony Perrego, Matt Sheppard, Tommy Meier, Jerry Higbie, Kenny Tremont, Andy Bachetti, Danny Creeden, Stewart Friesen, Brett Hearn, Jeff Heotzler Sr, Chuck McKee, Mike Mahaney, Bobby Varin, Brett Haas, Mel Schrufer, Mike Sabia, Keith Flach, Kevin Bates, Mike Ricci, Jeff Strunk, Pat Ward, Dave Hinsch, Rick Laubach, Bob Hentschel, Elmo Reckner, Danny Tyler, Craig Mitchell, Richie Eurich
2012- King of the Catskills: Brett Hearn, Danny Johnson, Duane Howard, Jerry Higbie, Pat Ward, Kevin Duryea, Mel Schrufer, Jimmy Phelps, Ryan Godown, Jeff Heotzler, Jackie Brown, Justin Holland, Butch Tittle, Stewart Friesen, Mike Mahaney, Danny Creeden, Jim Davis, Chuck McKee, Mike Ruggiero, Danny Tyler, Doug Manmiller, Mike Ricci, Bobby Varin, David Hunt
2011- King of the Catskills Modifieds: Andy Bachetti, Bobby Varin, Duane Howard, Jeff Heotzler, Brett Hearn, Jeff Strunk, Justin Holland, Mike Ricci, Butch Tittle, Pat Ward, Richard Smith, Michael Storms, Danny Tyler, Mel Schrufer, Mike Mahaney, Jeremy Quick, Danny Creeden, Danny Johnson, Rick Holsten, Billy Decker, Wade Hendrickson, Stewart Friesen, David Hunt, Ryan Watt, Jerry Higbie, Shaun Walker
2010- King of the Catskills Modifieds: Danny Johnson, Andy Bachetti, Matt Sheppard, Stewart Friesen, Mike Ricci, Brett Hearn, Pat Ward, Meme DeSantis, Bobby Varin, Duane Howard, Robbie Green, Jamie Yannone, Doug Manmiller, Sean Gunther, Craig Mitchell, Shaun Walker, John Willman, Rick Laubach, Dom Roselli, Bobby Trapper, Mel Schrufer, Brian Weaver, Neil Harris, Rick Mill, Frank Cozze, Jerry Higbie, Greg Hastie, Jeff Heotzler, Ronnie Johnson
2009- King of the Catskills Modifieds: Jerry Higbie, Andy Bachetti, Mike Ricci, Mike Colsten, Pat Ward, Greg Hastie, Chuck McKee, Kevin Duryea, Danny Johnson, Billy Pauch, Stewart Friesen, Jamie Yannone, Brian Weaver, Clinton Mills, Brett Hearn, John Lutes Jr, Russ Zimmerman, Jeff Richardson, Vinny DeCicco, Rick Mill, Bobby Trapper, Brian Malcolm, Brent Boyer, Jeremy Markle, Danny Creeden, Shaun Walker, Ricky Yetter, Mark Pullen, Howard Jarvis
2008-King of the Catskills: Rich Ricci Jr, Brett Hearn, Danny Tyler, Chuck McKee, Billy Van Pelt, Pat Ward, Keith Hoffman, Jimmy Johnson, Andy Bachetti, Jackie Brown Jr, Mike Ricci, Richie Eurich, Stewart Friesen, Jerry Higbie, Joey Grammes, Jeff Heotzler, Kevin Duryea, John McGill, Scott Ferrier, Tom Hindley, Ricky Yetter, Mike Colsten, Danny Johnson, Bobby Trapper, Jeff Rudalavage, Alan Rudalavage, Brian Weaver
2007- King of the Catskills: Rich Ricci Jr, Mike Ricci, Danny Johnson, Jackie Brown Jr, Danny Tyler, Robbie Green, Donnie Elliott, Jamie Yannone, Rick Mill, Scott Ferrier, Joey Grammes, John McGill, Joe Barbagallo Jr, Mark Pullen, Danny Creeden, Brian Weaver, Jerry Higbie, David Bush, Brett Hearn, Andy Bachetti, Richie Eurich, Alan Rudalavage, Jeremy Smith, Mel Schrufer
2006- King of the Catskills: Rich Ricci Jr, Tom Hindley, Jerry Higbie, Andy Bachetti, Dave Camara, Brian Malcolm, Jason Hamilton, John McGill, Rick Mill, Tom McGurrin, Hank Goranson, Mark Pullen, Chris Johnson, Joe Barbagallo Jr., Jackie Brown Jr., Ernie Palmer Jr., Jeff Heotzler, Larry Badaracco, Dom Roselli, Ryan Stortini, Mel Schrufer, Vinnie DeCicco, Barry Davis, Jim Winchell.
2005- King of the Catskills: Mike Ricci, Jackie Brown Jr., Rich Ricci Jr., Craig Mitchell, Jason Hamilton, Joe Barbagallo Jr., Marc Johnson, Barry Davis, John McGill, Scott Ferrier, Mike Tholin, Stan Lemiesz, Jack Gentile, Robbie Green, Ed Strada Jr., Larry Hendershot, Mark Pullen, Rick Raisner, Tom Mayberry, Darren McCaughey.
Racing is on tap every Friday night from April through September. The King of the Catskills spectacular is this week for the speedway on September 15th. The rain date in September 22nd. Pit Gates will open at 5:00; Spectator Gates open at 5:30; Hot Laps are at 7:00 and the racing begins at 7:30 PM. Admission at the gate for the show is Adults $24.00 Seniors $22.00 (65+) (12+) Children $5.00 (11+ under); Reserved Indoor Seating $30.00; Reserved Outdoor Seating $26.00; Family four pack special: 2 Adults + 2 Children and $20.00 in Food Vouchers for $68.00 (a savings of $10.00)
For further updates and information regarding all of the news and additions to the Accord Speedway, log on to their very well documented website at: http://www.accordspeedway.com or call the speedway hotline at: 845 626 3478.