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Sunday, August 19 - This Sunday excersion started where many of them have lately, at the Park & Ride at William Penn Highway of Rt.33. Today the crew would consist of my brother, Bob, Pat and I leaving the Easton area at 11:15 AM. Destination was the Chemung Speedrome, a 3/8 mile semi-banked asphalt oval located right off Rt. 17 west of Binghamton, New York. We arrived around 2 PM after making the necessary stops for food and nature calling. We have not been back to Chemung since it opened and the facility is upkept very nicely and is top notch. A five division card was to be presented today highlighted by the appearance of the ROC modified tour which would run a 125 lap affair. Their 24 cars would be joined by the bandoleros (5), super stocks (7), legend cars (19) and four cylinders (4). Racing got underway a tad late at 2:45, 15 minutes off the scheduled starting time but was moved along well once underway.
One heat was run for the bandoleros, super stocks and four cylinders while three heats were needed for the legend cars and the ROC modifieds. No consies would be needed in any division so all preliminary qualifying was in the books by 3:34. A reasonable 30 minute intermission followed on a glorious mid August Sunday afternoon which I believe is my favorite day to witness racing during the day time. The 10 lap bandolero feature was first up at 4:11 and was red flagged when young Cody Jackson drifted down the banking after spinning and was clobbered by Nick Morich. Jackson was carefully removed from the wrecked car via backboard and reports were that no one was seriously injured in the scary accident. Once back underway Alex McCollum held sway until late in the event when David French passed him and went on to his sixth win of the year. The four cylinder feature was next and this was not too exciting as two of the four cars were from the dirt oval at Woodhall and were not that competitive on the asphalt. Gene Purvis won this one over Frank Morich.
The 20 lap super stock feature was next up and was a decent race. John Lane led the majority of the race being pressured by lady driver, Brittany Jack, from lap 6 until lap 15 when Jack made the winning pass and took home her first win of 2012 at Chemung over Lane and Terry Potrzebowski. The legend cars would go 30 laps as this one was a qualifier for the big show later in the year at Atlanta paying some big bucks to win. Mike Alcaro and Matt Pappa, a runner all over the east coast running for the national title battled it out in the early going. Pappa powered to the front on lap 10 and would hold the lead the remainder of the distance. Alcaro came home second with Todd McCollum third, Brandon DeBrakeleer fourth and Raven Schrantz turning in a good run rounding out the top five.
Now it was time for the ROC modified 125 lap main event. Matt Hirschman drew the pole and took off into the lead. He held sway until a lap 19 restart when Chuck Hossfeld best him for the top spot. Hirschman regained the lead on lap 21 and Hossfeld returned the favor off of turn four on lap 31. A lap 56 caution for the disabled machine of big winner on the Southern Tier, Jimmy Zacharias, saw many runners dive to the pit area for new tires but Hirschman remained on the track and in the lead. A long green flag period followed as Hossfeld, Kyle Ebersole and Erick Rudolph worked their way back to the front after pitting for new tires. These three caught back up to Hirschman but never made a challenge for the lead. At 6:31 Matt Hirschman flashed under the checkered flag winning his fourth straight ROC tour race over Ebersole, Hossfeld, Rudolph and Brian DeFebo claiming fifth.
All in all it was a good day of racing on a beautiful Sunday afternoon doing something that brings enjoyment and pleasure to our crew. Next week a Central Pennsylvania run looks to be in the making with four races in three days with a variety of race cars in the mix. Stayed tuned and in the meantime get out there and enjoy some good short track racing at a track near you or take it on the road for a new memory.
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