Tonkin Tames Afton Modified Field

Afton, NY – Friday night at the Afton Motorsports Park saw even better track conditions than the week before which led to some pretty outstanding racing taking place in all divisions on Afton Driving Park night.
The 30 lap ZMK Construction Modified feature was captured by Brett Tonkin who came on strong late in the race to pass Tim Mayne for the lead on lap 27. Tonkin won over Craig Hanson, Jeremy Smith, Nick Nye, and Mayne.
The 20 lap Chambers & O’Hara Open Sportsman feature will be a feature remembered for a long time at Afton. Sixty – seven year old Skip Pickwick driving the Hart Logging sponsored and maintained car led the entire feature for his first career Sportsman win. Pickwick led Dave Rosa, Dennis Clapperton, Brandon Kuhn, and Tyler Hart across the line.
The 20 lap Butler Auto Sales Crate Sportsman feature almost nearly saw another surprise winner. Corey Cormier passed leader Fred Christ with four laps to go and go on to the win over Bobby Flood, Christ, Kinser Hill, and Blaine Klinger.
The 20 lap The Trophy Guy IMCA Modified feature for the fifth consecutive week the checker went to James Cornell. But the stout IMCA Modified field is making him work harder for each feature win. Cornell took the lead on lap ten from Jake Maynard and went on to win over Beau Ballard, Maynard, Tyler Stoddard, and Tim Vandemark.
The 15 lap Rinker Insurance Agency Street Stock feature saw the four race win streak of Butch Green snapped by Dustin Harris. Both drivers raced side by side for the entire race distance with Harris using set up advice from Green going on to the win. Harris led Green, Ron Greek, Fred Christ, and Jonathon Fowlston across the stripe.
The 15 lap Four Cylinder Truck feature was an elbows up feature on this night with plenty of hard racing taking place. Ralph Cuozzo took the lead from Trey Palmer with two laps to go and go on to his fourth win of the year over Palmer, Brandon Loucks, Jerry Lanfair, and Dylan Nichols.
Tim Mayne and Craig Hanson brought the Modified feature to green with Mayne jumping out to the lead over Hanson, Darwin R. Greene, Brett Tonkin, and Jeremy Smith. With the leading duo pulling away Tonkin slipped under Greene for third on lap four.
On a lap seven restart Mayne once again pulled out to a small lead over Hanson, Tonkin, Greene, and Smith. When Hanson slipped up and over the turn four cushion on lap nine Tonkin was able to grab second.

Greene slipped up and over the turn four cushion on lap 12 and that allowed Smith to move into fourth and Nick Nye into fifth.
Up front Mayne was in control and looking to pull off a huge upset win. With the remainder of the race going caution free the big lead that Mayne once had was now shrinking little by little.
What once was a 15 car length lead at the halfway point was now down to three car length lead with eight laps to go. The Tonkin car was getting quicker while it seemed that the Mayne car was slowing down.
Exiting turn two on lap 26 the Mayne car pushed up the track and that was all Tonkin needed as he filled the opening. The two raced side by side into turn three and coming out of turn four Tonkin had the lead.
Once in front Tonkin opened up a big lead with Mayne now trying his best to hold off the remainder of the field. Mayne pushed up in turn three on lap 27 and that allowed Hanson to move into second.
Tonkin in for the win, his first of the year and fifth different Modified feature winner of the year at Afton Motorsports Park; Hanson, Smith, Nye, and Mayne rounded out the top five.
Tonkin and Smith won the qualifying races on this night.
Skip Pickwick and Butch Klinger brought the 20 lap Open Sportsman feature to green with Pickwick motoring out to the lead over Dennis Clapperton, Klinger, Dave Rosa, and Dan Burman.
Following a lap five restart Pickwick once again motored into the lead over Clapperton, Klinger, Burman, and Rosa. Rosa got back by Burman for fourth two laps later.
On a lap 11 restart Pickwick showing superior power in his engine jumped out to his largest lead of the race with Rosa getting past Klinger for third.
Burman moved past a slip sliding Klinger for fourth on lap 15 and on the next lap Brandon Kuhn moved past Klinger into fifth.
Up front Pickwick was running a perfect line around the smooth race track and his lead was getting bigger. Rosa got under Clapperton for second on lap 18 and set his sights on Pickwick for the lead.
At the checkers with the crowd standing and cheering for Pickwick who captured his first career Sportsman feature win. Rosa, Clapperton, Burman, and Kuhn rounded out the top five. In post race tech inspection the Burman car was found to be racing under the minimum weight requirement and was disqualified and this moved Tyler Hart into fifth.
Clapperton and Rosa won the qualifying races earlier in the evening.
Fred Christ and Blaine Klinger brought the 20 lap Crate Sportsman feature to green with Klinger grabbing the lead over Christ, Aaron Shelton, Duane Knapp, and Gary Smith.
On a lap three restart Shelton moved into the lead with a high low move and at the same time Smith went from fifth to third. Smith continued his charge to the front and moved into second on lap five and set his sights on leader Shelton.
Shelton was able to keep his lead on a lap six restart over Smith, Christ, Klinger and Knapp. But on the next restart on lap eight, the entire story of the race changed.
The front row cars of Shelton and Smith became entangled exiting turn four and this stacked the field up and shuffled the running order.
When racing resumed Christ found himself back in front over Corey Cormier, Bobby Flood, Kinser Hill, and Klinger. Hill and Klinger exchanged fourth and fifth several times before Hill took command of the spot for good on lap 12.
Up front Christ was holding his own against Sportsman standout Cormier as it seemed that Cormier didn’t have enough to get by Christ for the lead.
A caution with five laps to go, closed the field up and that is all Cormier needed. When the green lights flashed back on Christ kept his lead but now Cormier was looking for a way around Christ for the lead.
Christ made one mistake and he paid for it as he slipped up exiting turn two on lap 16 and that was all Cormier needed. Cormier  filled the open hole and took the lead entering turn three to lead lap 17.
Bobby Flood quietly was sitting in third and he got under Christ for second on lap 18 and he set sail after Cormier for the lead.
Cormier in for the win over Flood, Christ, Hill, and Klinger.
Cody Clark, Klinger, and Christ won the qualifying races on this night.
Tim Vandemark and Jake Maynard led the IMCA Modified field to green to start their 20 lap feature.
Maynard bolted into the lead over Beau Ballard, Vandemark, James Cornell, and Tyler Stoddard. Cornell moved into third on lap two and applied heavy pressure on Ballard for second and that pressure paid off as he took second on lap four.
Maynard was racing a very consistent line on the bottom part of the track and let Cornell know that if he wanted to pass him, he would have to go around him and not under him.
Once Cornell realized that he wasn’t able to pass Maynard down low he took the high side of the speedway. Maynard was racing hard down low but Cornell was up top and building momentum and was gaining on Maynard for the lead.

As the leading duo raced under the crossed flags Cornell was able to take the lead and once in front opened up a big lead.
Meanwhile Maynard had to hold off Ballard for second and they had their own private race going for second. With two laps to go Ballard took advantage of a Maynard mistake and got under him for second.
Cornell in for his fifth consecutive win over Ballard, Maynard, Stoddard, and Vandemark.
Stoddard won the qualifying race earlier in the racing program.
Ralph Cuozzo and Jonathon Fowlston brought the 15 lap Street Stock feature to green. Third place starter Dustin Harris bolted into the lead over Butch Green, Cuozzo, Ron Greek, and Fred Christ.
Harris and Green like they have been doing all year pulled away from the field to set up their own private race for the lead. Behind them Greek, Christ, and Fowlston were waging a great race for third.
Up front Harris, using set up advice he received from Green during the week was holding the bottom groove better than he has the entire year. Green kept trying to sneak under Harris for the lead but didn’t have enough room to make the pass.
Green knew that he would have to go up and around Harris if he wanted to win his fifth consecutive feature. Green started to run the outside on lap nine and was making ground up each lap.
With the two to go signal being shown Green was up along side Harris for the lead, but the yellow lights flashed on for the spun car of Fowlston.
Harris was able to gather his thoughts and ran two perfect laps to capture the win over Green, Greek, Christ, and Fowlston.
Due to low car count no qualifying races were run.
The Four Cylinder Truck 15 lap feature had Derrick Brundege and Jerry Lanfair lead them to green with rookie racer Brundege getting the lead over Lanfair, Brandon Loucks, Dylan Nichols, and Pete Christensen.
The racing was hard and fast with plenty of contact taking place throughout the field, which led to some caution flag periods.
Trey Palmer moved into fourth on lap two and after a lap three restart Bob Crandall moved Palmer back to fifth as he took fourth.
Rookie runner Loucks grabbed the lead on a lap four restart with Ralph Cuozzo going from sixth to second.

With another yellow coming out on lap five, the next restart was a wild one indeed. The front row of Loucks and Cuozzo became entangled for a little bit and that was all Palmer needed to go from third to first.
Cuozzo was able to move past Loucks for second on lap nine and with a yellow coming out on lap 11, that was all Cuozzo needed.
Cuozzo applied heavy pressure on Palmer for the lead and he finally made it work with a turn four high side pass coming down for the one to go signal.
Cuozzo in for the win over Palmer, Loucks, Lanfair, and Nichols.
NOTES; there will be a new ZMK Construction Modified track champion as two time consecutive and defending Modified track champion Andy Bachetti has decided to race elsewhere on Friday nights. Two excellent examples of true racing sportsmanship took place on this night with Street Stock racer Butch Green during the week giving set up advice to Dustin Harris and that set up advice made the Harris car just that much faster that Green couldn’t get past him for his fifth consecutive win. In the Crate Sportsman feature Kinser Hill spun out and track officials made a call that would have sent Tyler Ward to the rear for spinning Hill out, Hill stopped to inform track officials that he was already going around before Ward hit him and thus Ward kept his position. Brandon Walters suffered terminal engine woes in his heat ending his evening of racing.
Next Friday night at Afton Motorsports Park will be New York State Stock Car Association ( NYSSCA ) Night. John Keegan and his NYSSCA Staff will be on hand to award bonus money to NYSSCA Members who finish in the top finishing position in the feature events. They will also be signing up new members at the track on this night. In racing competition will be the ZMK Construction Modifieds, Chambers & O’Hara Open Sportsman, Butler Auto Sales Crate Sportsman, The Trophy Guy IMCA Modifieds, Rinker Insurance Agency Street Stocks, and Four Cylinder Trucks.
Pit gates open at 4 pm, grandstand gates open at 4:30 pm, hot laps are at 6:15 pm, and the first heat goes green at 7 pm sharp. Pit admission with no track license / membership required is $30, adult grandstand admission is $12, seniors age 62 and up are $10, youth aged 9 to 14 are $5, and 8 and under are free with a paid adult admission.
For more information on Afton Motorsports Park please log on to the World Wide Web at or by calling 607 – 639 – DIRT or 607 – 624 – 3772.
Afton Motorsports Park is fast, fun, and furious…come check us out!

ZMK Construction Modified Finish; Brett Tonkin, Craig Hanson, Jeremy Smith, Nick Nye, Tim Mayne, Darwin R. Greene, Mitch Gibbs, Rusty Smith, JR Hurlburt, Steve Babicek, Kenny Titus, Ray See, Jim Cummings. DNS; Brandon Walters.

Chambers & O’Hara Open Sportsman Finish; Skip Pickwick, Dave Rosa, Dennis Clapperton, Brandon Kuhn, Tyler Hart, Butch Klinger, Claude Hutchings, Jr., Don Hart, Jr., Craig Pope, Bill Deckleman, Steve Andersen, Rich Coons. DQ; Dan Burman ( light ).

Butler Auto Sales Crate Sportsman Finish; Corey Cormier, Bobby Flood, Fred Christ, Kinser Hill, Blaine Klinger, Tyler Ward, Aaron Shelton, Craig Monroe, Gary Smith, Ryan Macartney, Michael Grover, Rob Loucks, Duane Knapp, Cody Clark, Fred Smith, Matt Roberts. DNS; AJ Digsby.

The Trophy Guy IMCA Modified Finish; James Cornell, Beau Ballard, Jake Maynard, Tyler Stoddard, Tim Vandemark, Gary Roberts, Eric Stumpf, Bryan Steigerwald, Bill Nichols.
Rinker Insurance Agency Street Stock Finish; Dustin Harris, Butch Green, Ron Greek, Fred Christ, Jonathon Fowlston, Ralph Cuozzo, Ernie Staelens, Jason Burgher.

Four Cylinder Truck Finish; Ralph Cuozzo, Trey Palmer, Brandon Loucks, Jerry Lanfair, Dylan Nichols, Jeff Young, Pete Christensen, Kyle Lanfair, Derrick Brundege, Bob Crandall.

Friday June 22nd – 7 pm – NYSSCA NIGHT – * Bonus Money to NYSSCA Members – Modifieds, Open Sportsman, Crate Sportsman, IMCA Modifieds, Street Stocks, and Four Cylinder Trucks.
Friday June 29th – 7 pm – Modifieds, Open Sportsman, Crate Sportsman, IMCA Modifieds, Four Cylinder Trucks, and CRSA Sprint Cars. Plus Vintage Cars will be on display all night long on the midway. *** increased admission ***  NO STREET STOCKS.
Saturday June 30th 10 am – Vintage Cars on display and on track racing action. FREE ADMISSION!
Friday July 6th – 7 pm – 129TH AFTON FAIR – FAIR CHAMPIONSHIP RACES – Modifieds, Open Sportsman, Crate Sportsman, Street Stocks, and Four Cylinder Trucks. FIREWORKS at the conclusion of racing.  *** increased admission ***  NO IMCA MODIFIEDS.