Gary Balough made it three straight on the Moody Mile in Super DIRT Week VII in October of 1978. Super DIRT Week’s winningest driver qualified third behind Will Cagle and Frank Cozze, and he would share the second row with Sussex, New Jersey, newcomer Brett Hearn.
Although Balough led the most laps in October, 1978, it didn’t appear likely he would score his third straight win with Jimmy Horton leading the way within 20 laps of the finish.
Balough inherited the lead in his Tony Ferraiuolo-owned racer, and he went on to collect the victory. Chasing him at the line were Cozze, Stan Ploski, Ed Delmolino, C.D. Coville, Alan Johnson, Cagle, Hearn, Gary Gollub, and Bobby Gerhart. Jack Johnson finished 42nd.
In other SDW news from the fall of 1978 was the inaugural Syracuse Super Nationals that pitted the Oswego Speedway supermodifieds against sprint cars with no wings.
Here’s an excerpt taken from www.jakessite.com:
The 1978 Supernationals, run on the same weekend as the Schaefer 200, was sanctioned by a fledgling group that called themselves The World of Outlaws. This particular event was an ill-fated experiment to run the supermodifieds with the sprinters on the big mile without wings as many crashed heavily. This configuration gave the supers an edge as they raced wingless at Oswego Speedway as a rule anyway, and the sprinters were thrown into uncharted waters, as they usually ran with wings.
The supers ruled on this day with Bobby Stelter qualifying quickest (33.713) in the Tobin #21 super and Bentley Warren, in the Snyder 77 taking overall combined honors with a win in the first 50km and a 4th in the second after starting far back. Stelter got second overall and the next super in the finishing order was Steve Gioia who was credited with 16th overall.
Ed Thompson, Ronnie Wallace, Gary Albritain, Eddie Bellinger, Brad Thrall and Don Mclaren all also competed in supers. Chuck Ciprich raced a sprinter in the event.
Notables from the sprint/super portion of the event were horrifying wrecks. Randy Wolfe suffered a broken back, and his series of flips was caught on film. http://www.jakessite.com/fair78/wolfe/index.html
In the second feature Steve Gioia lost control headed into turn one, and the ensuing melee left numerous cars destroyed including Ciprich whose car was nearly torn in half.
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