By BILL FOLEY
With 51 SDS Big Block Modifieds in the pits every driver knew qualifying would be a major challenge.
Two 15 car last chance races lined up with many top runners who you couldn’t’ imagine not qualifying for the main event.
Well, Peter Britten and Justin Haers won handily, but with officials taking only two there was desperation evident on the race track.
Of course, there were provisionals that would come out of these events as Kevin Root, Markus Dinkins, Darren Smith and Mike Gular all got those.
However, the two drivers earning the final spots were Ryan Susice and Chad Phelps.
Susice started sixth and had just 10 laps to get the job done.
Ryan said, “I am trying to learn about this big-block program. I really haven’s had a lot of experience in big=blocks. It was slick out there, but I was able to get a good run off of two and I was able to run the inside wall on the last lap to take the 34 (Kevin Root). I didn’t really expect to make this show. “
Continuing he explained, “I’ve never been able to run this type of top notch stuff as Randy and Bob Slack have provided me with outstanding equipment. We will run the big-block at the SDS show at Ransomville and there is some talk about Oswego. We will just do a handful. Other than that, I am running my own equipment at Ransomville and the Slack car at Merrittville.”
Phelps battled right to the end as he reflected by saying, “I did not get a good start despite starting on the front row. I got into a jumble and I was like a pinball in the middle. I didn’t want to mess up again and picked it back up. The 12 slid up a couple of times and I was finally able to get him for second place.”
Continuing, Chad said, “There were over 50 cars here tonight and just qualifying was going to be tough. Also I am still learning this coil over stuff and that has been a switch. A lot of good guys did not make the show tonight and it is satisfying to get in.”
The night ended up with a 19th for Susice while Phelps had the driveline break in the opening laps, but the duo put on a solid, entertaining show just to earn a spot in the line up.