By STEVEN PETTY
THOROLD, ONT – Tim Hortons Night at Merrittville Speedway Saturday August 4th saw two St. Catharines drivers RRRoll to their 7th wins of 2018 – Mat Williamson and Rob Murray in the S&W Service Centre 358 Modified and Hoosier Stock Divisions. Williamson’s win was his first career Jerry Winger Memorial – an annual race hosted by the Speedway’s Reunion Committee.
Two drivers would also take home their third wins of the season – James Friesen also of St. Catharines in the David Chevrolet Sportsman and John Couture from Niagara Falls in the Dave’s Auto & Speed Centre V6 Divisions respectively. Jeffery May from Mt. Hope won his first Vansickle Pet Valu & Groomingsdale’s Mod Lite feature of the season.
The rain delayed 67th Anniversary Celebration also included the Thunder on the Dirt Vintage Racing Series with Steve Billings of Merrickville and Mark Shadwell of Hamilton winning the features for the Sportsman and Modified Divisions.
Prior to race time, longtime starters and racers Steve DeVos and Barry Davidson became the newest inductees into the CAA Niagara Merrittville Speedway Wall of Fame. The CAA Dedication to Racing Award went to Art Bicknell and Jim Irvine.
Mat Williamson and Gary Lindberg led the field of S&W Service Centre Modifieds to the green flag for the 50-lap Jerry Winger Memorial with Williamson jumping into the lead. Mike Bowman would challenge Lindberg for second early on, as Williamson would open-up his advantage. The duo of Williamson and Lindberg would battle for the lead as Pete Bicknell would reel in third place running Mike Bowman. Williamson would pull away from Lindberg as the leaders hit lap traffic on lap 20. Ryan Susice was driving with a mission.
“The Ransomville Renegade” started 13th on the grid and would work his way into fourth place with 15 laps remaining. After a late race restart, Williamson would hold off Lindberg and Susice with Bowman and Scott Wood rounding out the top 5.
Dave Small and Robbie Johnston were on the front row for the David Chevrolet DIRTcar Sportsman feature with Johnston leading the opening circuits. Ryan Ferri would take the lead away on lap three. Johnston would battle with Ferri for several laps for the lead with Rob Knapp racing in third and was followed closely by Paul Gaboury and James Friesen. Johnston would regain the lead on lap nine. Friesen would move into second after a lap 11 caution and would go after Johnston. Friesen would take the lead away on lap 14, as Adam Leslie moved into third. Leslie would take the runner-up position away from Johnston on lap 15. Friesen would go on to score the win with Leslie followed by Paul Gaboury, Johnston and Brent Begolo as the top 5.
Dave Small and Tanner Podwinski brought the Hoosier Stocks to the green flag with Brad Sheehan taking the lead away at the end of lap one. Dave Bailey would move into second and would go after the leader with Kyle Pelrine racing in third place. Bailey and Sheehan would battle for several laps with both exchanging the lead. Sheehan slowed coming out turn two on lap 14 with a flat right rear tire and on the following lap, Bailey would suffer a flat right front tire. Rob Murray would inherit the lead on lap 16 and would hold off Pelrine in the final four laps to score the win, his seventh of the season. Murray would hold off Pelrine to score his seventh feature win of the season with Dave Small, Billy Bleich and Tanner Podwinski as the top 5.
Steve Billings took the lead early in the main event for the Thunder on the Dirt Vintage Series as they split the group into a Sportsman and Modified divisions. Billings would lead all 12 laps to grab the Sportsman win. The Modified feature would see Jim Kirkwood show the way from his pole position. Bill Willard Jr would take the lead on lap two and Mark Shadwell would take the lead away on lap four and held off Willard at the checkered flag.
Qualifying heats were won by Alan Byerly, Jim Kirkwood, Tim Natalino, Jeff Larmet, and Brian Billings.
Chris Watson would take the lead first in the main event for the Vansickle Pet Valu & Groomingdale’s Mod Lites. RJ Pietz would roll several times in turns one and two to bring out the red flag on lap five. On the restart, Jeffrey May would go three wide with Watson and Brent Begolo to take over the lead on lap six. May would lead the rest of the distance to score the win, his first of the season with Josh Sliter, Chris Watson, Begolo and Randy Giroux as the top 5.
Chris Mussat would take the lead off the start in the feature event for the Dave’s Auto and Speed Centre V6 division. John Couture would take second away from Kenny Hair on lap five and would challenge Mussat for the lead. Couture would take the lead away on lap eight and would go on to score his third divisional victory of the season Colton Lane, Mussat, Kevin Conley and Jordan Fidler rounded out the top 5.
UPCOMING at Merrittville Speedway
Monday August 6th, Harvey’s of Port Colborne and Baron Roofing and Siding will present the 100 lap Big Block Modified Super DIRTcar Series 100 lap Main Event in addition to a BEI Lightning Series Event for the Sportsman plus Hoosier Stocks and 4 Cylinders.
Club Castropignano Pasta Dinner Tickets will be available when the Grandstands open at 4 with Show Time at 7 PM.
For further information – call 905-892-8266 or visit www.merrittvillespeedway.com
For all the news on Merrittville Speedway’s 2018 Season, Race fans and Race teams alike can follow Merrittville on Face Book https://www.facebook.com/groups/merrittvillespeedway/ and Twitter https://twitter.com/Merrittville?lang=en
MERRITTVILLE SPEEDWAY SPONSORS The 2018 67th Anniversary Bobcat of Hamilton Weekly Racing Series for Merrittville Speedway’s 5 Divisions is brought to race fans and racers by division sponsors – S&W Service Centre, David Chevrolet, Hoosier Tire Canada, Vansickle Pet Valu & Groomingdale’s, Central Fabricating and Welding and Dave’s Auto & Speed Centre in addition to many marketing partners Visit them at http://www.merrittvillespeedway.com/sponsors.htm and visit them when you require their products and/or services.
Celebrating more than15 years of serving the Hamilton, Halton and Niagara Regions, Bobcat of Hamilton is a leading provider of compact equipment for a wide variety of markets – striving to empower customers to do their jobs more efficiently and effectively.
To learn more about more about the Bobcat of Hamilton Advantage click on www.bobcatofhamilton.com.
Bobcat of Hamilton … One Tough Animal!
Tim Hortons Night – Saturday August 4, 2018
Bobcat of Hamilton Weekly Racing Series Complete Results
50 lap Jerry Winger Memorial for the S&W Service Centre 358 Modifieds (50 laps) Mat Williamson, Gary Lindberg, Ryan Susice, Mike Bowman, Scott Wood, Rick Richner, Fred Carleton, Chad Brachmann, Tommy Flannigan, Todd Gordon, Tom Neale, Adam Leslie, Pete Bicknell, Tim Jones, Matt Farnham.
David Chevrolet Sportsman Division Feature (25 laps) James Friesen, Adam Leslie, Paul Gaboury, Robbie Johnston, Brent Begolo, Rob Knapp, Justin Sharp, Jordan Cosco, Jay Mallory, Ryan Ferri, Dylan Davidson, Garrison Kretz, Chris Bellamy, Chris Storm, Brandon Gruhl, Trevor Wright, Sean Dominey, Brad Rouse, Dave DiPietro, Dave Small, Jason VanMil, Paul Cunningham, Derek VanMil, Lee Mallory, Vince Fargnoli.
Hoosier Stock Division Feature (20 laps) Rob Murray. Kyle Pelrine, Dave Small, Billy Bleich, Tanner Podwinski, Bill Podwinski, Zach Bleich, Jeff Humphry, Robin Mortensen, Dave Bailey, Brad Sheehan.
Vansickle Pet Valu & Groomingdale’s Modified Lite Division Feature (15 laps) Jeffrey May, Josh Sliter, Chris Watson, Brent Begolo, Randy Giroux, Craig Martin Rob Misener, Zach Trotter, Ryleigh Sliter, Tyler Winger, Ray Sliter, Jr., Dave Cornish, RJ Pietz.
Thunder on the Dirt Vintage Racing Series Modified Feature (12 laps) – Mark Shadwell, Bill Willard, Alex Morris, Steve Billings, Jim Kirkwood, Terry Larmet, Ron Wiltsie, Chris Ketch, Alan Byerly, Dillon Sliter, Tim Natalino.
Thunder on the Dirt Vintage Racing Series Sportsman Feature (12 laps) – Steve Billings, Tim Natalino, Jeff Larmet, Andy Imbeault, Jenn Landen, Conrad Baker, Bill Trip, Steve Lackie, Patty Charland, Kevin Lawes, Darrell Wilson.
Dave’s Auto and Speed Centre V6 Division Feature (12 laps) John Couture, Colton Lane, Chris Mussat, Kevin Conley, Jordan Fidler, Nick Hendricks, JJ MacDonald, Alana MacDonald, Tina Ronning.
Bobcat of Hamilton Weekly Racing Series Point Standings after August 4th Event
S&W Service Centre 358 Modified Division Mat Williamson – 654, Gary Lindberg – 628, Chad Brachmann – 622, Ryan Susice – 614, Mike Bowman – 594.
David Chevrolet Sportsman Division James Friesen – 544, Adam Leslie – 526, Brent Begolo – 522. Paul Gaboury – 510, Rob Knapp – 506.
Hoosier Stock Division – Rob Murray – 684, Dave Bailey – 620, Kyle Pelrine – 612, Brad Sheehan – 574, Dave Small – 568.
Vansickle Pet Valu & Groomingdale’s Modified Lite Brent Begolo – 612, RJ Pietz – 532, Chris Watson – 530, Jeffrey May 506, Tyler Winger – 493.
Dave’s Auto and Speed Centre V6 Division – John Couture – 624, Adam Plazek – 588, Chris Mussat – 536, Alana MacDonald – 496, Tina Ronning – 454..