Thompson, CT (October 18, 2015) - At the beginning of the 2015 ISMA season, Dave Shullick Jr. had a set goal, to try for an ISMA championship. He won Midwest Supermodified Association (MSA) titles and had many wins. When he had run sporadic ISMA events in the past, he'd won on that circuit too. This year the Bodnar-Shullick team chose to run a full schedule with their eye on the championship. On Sunday, at the Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park World Series of Racing, Shullick charged through the field of 25 to take the ISMA 50-lapper and more importantly, the 2015 Owner-Driver championship. In his first full season in ISMA “Shoe II” became the first Ohio driver to claim the title. Mission accomplished!
Shullick reflected on his successful season and what it all meant.
“I had hoped we could get a win here today. We had a really good car. I knew we'd be tough if we were there at the end. This really caps off a great season.
“We ran last year and missed some shows. We felt if we had run those shows we had missed we would have been there in points. This year we set out with a goal of doing it and seeing through the end. Really, the year went very well. I think we had the lead in the points all year for except after one show. It was a good year. I would say winning a championship is not about your good days, it's about minimizing your bad days. We were able to do that at Oswego for example, when we hit the wall. We were able to put the car together and rebound back up to third. It's an entire team effort; everybody pitches in. And, there's Jim Bodnar, the way he works on the car from 6 am to 9 o'clock at night, every night. He's completely dedicated to winning and you can tell, because we don't break down a lot.
“The team has five wins and Otto had one. We were really happy to see him get that. The wins definitely helped. So we had six wins as a team. Who would have thought it? As I said, it's an entire team effort including Level Performance, Elios Financial and everybody who pitched in throughout the year. In a sport where your father is one of the legends you look for a way that you can separate yourself a little bit from what he did in his legacy. I think this is something we can hang our hats on that we did and he didn't.”
What were the plans for the future? “I assume we will defend this title next year. We'll see when the schedule comes out and what it looks like. I look forward to the ISMA banquet and I will probably run some TQ stuff during the winter with Louie. We are looking forward to that.
After MSA and ISMA championships and the wins there, will you pursue the goal of winning a non-winged race at Oswego? “Absolutely. I will always have that goal of winning at Oswego to win a non-win feature there. I wouldn't put it past a point in my racing career that I actually get to run up there weekly at some point, so we'll see.”
Connecticut driver Rob Summers looked strong from the onset of the race, taking the initial lead and keeping the point until Shullick got by at the halfway mark. Summers was content with his second place after what might be called a luckless season. “I'll take second after the way this year has gone. I would have liked to win, but second is okay. We had a good run. Congratulations to Dave and the team on the win and the championship.”
The guy who had been Shullick's main challenger to the ISMA title, Mike Lichty, tried his best to claim a second ISMA title, but he fell short. He had won a heat on Saturday and was able to work his way up to third from his tenth starting feature spot. He said of his podium finish, “We were way too tight for where we needed to be. I just tightened the car up way too much for what we needed from the car we had yesterday to today. We were just way to snug and couldn't make the passes where they needed to happen. We'll take the third and go on to next year.”
Rob Summers, because of his recent bad luck, started on the pole alongside Ohioan Danny Shirey and after just one lap, Summers had command, trailed by Jeff Locke, Eddie Witkum Jr., Ben Seitz, Trent Stephens, in his first ever run at Thompson, and Shirey.
The race continued non-stop as Summers led Locke, then Seitz, and Stephens through the first 15 laps with Summers cutting into the back of the field before lap 10.
Mike Ordway Sr., who trailed Stephens was first out of the event when he parked the Booth 61 on lap 11. moving Shullick into fifth spot from his 12th starting spot.
On lap 15, yellow fell for a race-ending mishap between the 21 of Eddie Witkum and Timmy Jedrzejek in the Lane 97, who came together off turn four, with both cars receiving heavy damage. The 40 of Bob Magner was caught up in the incident but was able to pit and restart.
After both cars were towed off, the green fell for Summers, but yellow fell immediately for a spin by the 14 of Jon Gambuti who was able to restart.
That stop was the last of the race and Summers was off once again leading Locke, Seitz, Shullick, Stephens, Lichty, Chris Perley, Bobby Santos, Perley's teammate in the 71 and Mark Sammut, all running strong.
But Shullick was on the move and was up to second by lap 20. A lap car slowed Summers a little on lap 22, but he maneuvered by as did Shullick. Two laps later, Shullick was alongside and by the 74 of Summers and he was on his way to achieving that goal that was set months earlier. He pulled away from Summers and picked away at lapping a lot of the field. But Mike Lichty, too, was making some moves and he was right behind Summers by lap 30, while a slight distance behind Stephens, Seitz, Perley, Locke, Santos, Sammut and Shullick's teammate Otto Sitterly, were all racing hard to keep the leaders in sight.
With ten to go, Shullick was in another time zone as Summers and Lichty were still nose to tail, with Stephens and Seitz running behind them several car lengths apart. Perley, Santos, Sammut and Sitterly were still in the same lap but Shullick was moving in on his own team car, putting Sitterly down one just prior to the checkered. Shullick, Summers, Lichty, Stephens and Seitz were the top five under the double flags. Perley, Santos and Sammut, were sixth, seventh and eighth, respectively with Sammut the last car in the lead lap.
The annual ISMA awards banquet takes place on November 21 at Turning Stone Casino.
ISMA 50, THOMPSON SPEEDWAY MOTORSPORTS PARK WORLD SERIES OF SPEEDWAY RACING Oct 17-18, 2015
Heat 1: Rob Summers, Jeff Locke, Trent Stephens, Mike Ordway Sr., Otto Sitterly, Jon Gambuti, Lou LeVea Jr., Jamie Timmons
Heat 2: Mike Lichty, Mark Sammut, Dan Bowes, Danny Shirey, Dave McKnight, Dave Duggan, Bob Magner, Mike Netishen
Heat 3: Ben Seitz, Dave Shullick Jr., Chris Perley, Eddie Witkum Jr, Timmy Jedrzejek, Mike McVetta, Brandon Bellinger, Howard Page Jon McKennedy 79, dns, blown motor
Feature (50) 1. Dave Shullick Jr. (95), 2. Rob Summers (74), 3. Mike Lichty (84), 4. Trent Stephens (19), 5. Ben Seitz (17), 6. Chris Perley (11), 7. Bobby Santos (71), 8. Mark Sammut (78), 9. Otto Sitterly (7), 10. Jeff Locke (37), 11. Mike McVetta (22), 12. Dave McKnight (70),13. Danny Shirey (49), 14. Mike Netishen (55), 15. Bob Magner (40), 16. Dave Duggan (51), 17. Jon Gambuti (14), 18. Brandon Bellinger (02), 19. Howard Page (18), 20. Lou LeVea Jr. (83), 21. Dan Bowes (25), 22 Eddie Witkum Jr. (21), 23, Timmy Jedrzejek (97), 24. Mike Ordway Sr., 25. Jamie Timmons (27) dns
RADICAL RACE GEAR LAP LEADER: Dave Shullick Jr. ISMA HARD CHARGER ($100) sponsored by Baker Steel Detailing: Bobby Santos ISMA HARD CHARGER ($100) sponsored by Colonel Arnold Briggs in memory of his brother SFC Charles T. Briggs, USMC: Dave Shullick Jr.
Epping, NH (Sept. 12, 2015) - In New England the Star Speedway Classic is the traditional “big” race for supermodifieds. In Ohio, the Sandusky Hy-Miler is its counterpart. At Oswego Speedway, it's THE Classic. Combined, this trio has provided 147 years of racing excellence and excitement. Not many drivers have won two of the three. Only four drivers in all the years, have won all three. Ohio's Dave Shullick Jr. now has won two and he's going after number three. Saturday night at the famed ¼ mile bullring in New Hampshire, Shullick started sixth in the 25-car Star Classic field and slowly worked his way up to second place runner Dan Bowes as the two tried to keep sight of the high-flying leader Jeff Locke. Second generation driver Shoe II got the jump on Bowes to take second on lap 68 and then worked methodically up to Locke's tail, passing for the lead on lap 90. The rest is history as they say. Shullick hadn't really understood the meaning of winning the prestigious New England event when asked what the win meant. But he plans on finding out.
Dave walked through his race from his hauler. “The one thing I tried to do all race is not use it up. I tried to be really smart about it and not wear it out. I didn't even force anything, even with lap cars; just tried to be really smart. It's funny because we're from Ohio and Sandusky is our big one. For most of the guys out here, the Star Classic is their big one. I don't even know what it means to win this race yet. I need to talk to some people around here to understand the history of this race. But, still it feels pretty awesome. This is the third leg of the supermodified triple crown. I have a two of them now and hopefully we can get that Oswego Classic one day. I won't even talk about a championship yet until I run the numbers. I don't want to count my chickens before they hatch!”
While Shullick was cruising the Star oval, picking off cars as he went, a distance away a couple of cars were battling for top five spots. Jeff Abold of Baldwinsville, NY, started 12th and moved into second on lap 115 passing some heavy hitters in Mike Ordway Sr and Chris Perley along the way. But Abold was not completely surprised by his achievements. He knew his car was capable. And he'd been on the podium before.
“We struggled when we first got here. We just kept working on everything and even today we weren't the fastest car through qualifying but the car is just as solid as it's ever been. During the race the car just seems to come alive right around the half way mark, just before lap 100. We can take it from there. Some guys start falling off and here we are. It's just a phenomenal car. This is our second podium here and the fourth year in a row in the top five.”
Third place finisher Canadian Mark Sammut, was however, a little surprised at finally finishing well in the Classic. It was something he had not done before. “We weren't good all weekend except in the race. At the beginning of the race we were spinning the rear tire too easy and I thought we weren't going to last. I tried to baby the tires for the first part of the race trying to hang on to it. Once we got into a bit of clear traffic at the end, I started to pick it up a little. We were getting around pretty good especially when I had the track to myself. It was a little tough in traffic, but we were lucky to be able to pass some good cars. We'll take third place in the Star Classic any day. It's a good run considering we started 17th. This is our best finish by far here. We had a couple good shots at it when we were running in the top three or four in the past, but something always went wrong and we didn't finish. Any time we did finish we were usually a couple laps down.”
As has been Star tradition, the top twelve in time trials were handicapped for starting spots while the remainder of the field lined up according to their times. Only the 00 of two-time Star Classic winner Joe Gosek, who crashed heavily in practice, did not make the starting field.
Jeff Locke and Dan Bowes headed up the 50th running of the Star Classic in front of a huge crowd of fans on hand for the historic event, and it was Locke who vaulted to a commanding lead from the drop of the green. By lap 6 he was lapping at the tail of the field and began to put cars a lap down. Bowes stayed in touch back in second with Timmy Jedrzejek, Eddie Witkum Jr, Mike Ordway Sr, Shullick, Chris Perley, Mike Lichty and Jon McKennedy the key players behind Bowes.
The first yellow came on lap 20 when the 51 of Dave Duggan slid off the track in turn three. Brian Sobus, and Jamie Timmons pitted here with Sobus and Duggan out of the action.
At the drop of the restart green, Locke continued to eat up and spit out lap cars as he went along. Bowes continued to hold second fighting off Jedrzejek, Witkum, Ordway, Shullick, Perley, Lichty and more.
Yellow fell again on lap 34 for a spin by the 7 of Tom Tomberello. He restarted behind Mike Netishen and Jamie Timmons, who had pitted and returned.
The race went clean green for a spell allowing Locke to move farther out in front and Timmy J to swap second place with Bowes as Witkum, Ordway and Perley were just behind.
The racing came to an abrupt halt on lap 44 when the 28 of Eric Lewis went full bore off the third turn and into the trees in the distance. Red was dropped immediately and a round of applause went up when Lewis emerged from the car with no injuries. The car, however, would take some time to be unwrapped from the trees and brush so a refueling was allowed while the safety crew did their work. During the time fourth place runner Eddie Witkum's wing was checked over and declared safe to continue but it would ultimately cause him to leave the race.
Back underway, Locke had two lap cars between his 37 and the second place 25 of Bowes who had one lap car wedged in behind him and Jedrzejek. Shullick was on the move as he came up to challenge Timmy J for third.
Mike Lichty's 84 slowed and moved into the pits on lap 53 with an apparent blown motor, causing him to loose some valuable points in the title chase. He had come into the Star Classic sitting second in markers behind Shullick. Trent Stephens was in and out of the pits in the meantime as was Tomberello.
Locke took off again on the restart with Witkum pulling out of the action several laps later, giving up fourth to Ordway. It was Shullick, Timmy J, Ordway, Jon McKennedy and Perley next in line.
As the counter ticked to the 63 mark, Jeff Abold's 05 was coming alive as he passed by Rob Summers and headed for Perley. Mark Sammut was following Abold on his march to the front.
Shullick moved past Bowes on lap 67 and now headed for the elusive Locke. It was still Bowes, Jedrzejek, Ordway, McKennedy, Perley, Abold, Sammut and Summers fighting for position as the race passed the halfway mark.
Yellow dropped on lap 80 for the 49 of Danny Shirey, stopped on the front stretch. He was pushed to the pits, and done.
Locke did not need the caution as it put Shullick right on his tail now with no lap car cushions. The two ran nose to tail for many laps as Shoe tried to find a way around, but who also knew he had plenty of time.
On lap 90, Shullick found his way and passed by the 37 for the lead. He would soon be gobbling up the slower cars in the field as the laps flew by. Locke, still in second, got caught up by one of those lap cars Shullick had passed and suddenly the 37 crashed into the wall under the flag stand, ending his great run in a shower of sparks, much to the dismay of those rooting for the “hometown guy”. The disappointed Chester, NH driver said later, “We had a good run going early. Just kind of going half throttle, riding around. Then we started getting loose about lap 90 or so and Shullick got by us. I was picking off lap cars and got to the outside of one and he didn't see me I guess, so I have wrecked race car again this week. Two weeks in a row. I really hate it for my guys. These guys work really hard to put this thing together for me. The give me a good, competitive car. Brian Allegresso, Doc Hathaway, and Jerry Martel – these guys work so hard and I really feel bad for them. But, I know we'll get it back. We run good at Thompson and we'll go get 'em then.”
Shullick continued as the front runner on the restart of lap 110 as Abold moved in on first Ordway and then Bowes to take second on lap 116. Ordway soon put Bowes into fourth with Perley and Sammut now on the move as the race wore down to the finish.
Soon some of the key players in the top ten were faced with becoming lap cars themselves as Shullick cruised by Bowes, then Summers, and more. On lap 127, there were no less than seven lap cars between the Bodnar-built 95 and second place Abold, trailed closely by Ordway, Sammut and Perley.
With ten to go in the 150-lapper the 95 moved in on fifth place runner Perley but moved up no farther before the checkered flew, leaving Abold, Sammut, who had passed Ordway and Perley the top five and the only cars remaining in the lead lap.
Ordway, who once again was driving the Clyde Booth 61, finished fourth after a couple non-racing years. The legendary Fremont, NH driver chuckled when asked about his finish. “Action speaks louder than words they say and in this case they are right. Mike said simply, smiling all the while, “The car was pretty good. I had a lot of patience out there. I haven't raced for two years. I figure that's pretty good. I passed some cars. I made it to fourth. I'm pretty happy.”
In fifth for the second time in two weeks, was Chris Perley. Still vocal about the team's tire struggle, he said, “The crew worked their ass off all weekend long. We changed everything. We are still trying to chase the tires. Unfortunately at least the first half of the race showed that with everybody running in line. It makes everybody mental. You start to see cautions because everyone is looking so hard for that spot and it's because we're running on hockey pucks. I'm sorry, but we are running on hockey pucks. But, the Shoe has it together. Awesome. It was a great job for them. They are the ones to beat. But, the tires are killing everyone. If we get a tire we could put on a good show, without this flaying around and spinning the tires.”
ISMA concludes its season at the Thompson Speedway Motorsports Park, October 16-18. After the Star Classic, the points should show that the championship is still up for grabs.
50th Running ISMA Star Classic Star Speedway, Sept. 12, 2015
1. 95 Dave Shullick Jr. 11.050, 2. 97 Timmy Jedrzejek 11.226, 3. 21 Eddie Witkum Jr. 11.265, 4. 37 Jeff Locke 11.274, 5. 25 Dan Bowes 11.323, 6. 11 Chris Perley 11.363, 7. 61 Mike Ordway Sr., 8. 98 Justin Belfiore 11.384, 9. 79 Jon McKennedy 11.409, 10. 7 Tommy Tomberello 11.412, 11. 05 Jeff Abold 11.460, 12. 84 Mike Lichty 11.461, 13. 74 Rob Summers 11.463, 14. 19 Trent Stephens 11.483, 15. 55 Mike Netishen 11.499, 16. 28 Eric Lewis 11.504, 17. 78 Mark Sammut 11.507, 18. 49 Danny Shirey 11.519, 19.17 Ben Seitz 11.525, 20. 65 Tim Ice 11.531, 21. 51 Dave Duggan 11.672, 22. 8 Lonnie Adamson 11.750, 23. 27 Jamie Timmons 11.805, 24. 14 Jon Gambuti 11.808, 25. 5 Brian Sobus 12.074
Star Classic 150
1. 95 Dave Shullick Jr., 2. 05 Jeff Abold, 3. 78 Mark Sammut, 4. 61 Mike Ordway Sr., 5. 11 Chris Perley, 6. 25 Dan Bowes, 7. 97 Timmy Jedrzejek, 8. 74 Rob Summers, 9. Trent Stephens, 10. 65 Tim Ice, 11. Mike Netishen, 12. 27 Jamie Timmons, 13. Justin Belfiore 98, 14. 37 Jeff Locke, 15. 8 Lonnie Adamson, 16. 14 Jon Gambuti, 17. 79 Jon McKennedy, 18. 49 Danny Shirey, 19. 17 Ben Seitz, 20. 21 Eddie Witkum Jr.. 21. 84 Mike Lichty, 22. 7 Tommy Tomberello, 23. 28 Eric Lewis, 24. 51 Dave Duggan,25. 5 Brian Sobus.
Delaware, Ontario (Aug. 21, 2015) – Dave Shullick Jr. opened the ISMA season with a last lap pass win at Delaware International Speedway in May. Shullick of North Ridgeville, Ohio came back strong to win the 75-lap ISMA Super Modified main event presented by Don-Mor Carstar Friday evening in front of a packed house at Delaware Speedway. Shullick, who started fourth in the event, was the ISMA points leader entering the evening and his strong performance ensures that he left the night with that lead intact. It was Shullick's third win of the 2015 season.
Said Dave in victory lane, “I really like this place now. I love the bumps actually. It's a lot of fun to race. I know this car really well. It started out a little free but this car tightens up as it goes. You just have to stick with it. I had a lot left at the end. I really did. On the last I was getting hand signals. I was cruising and saw the 84 pop up. So the last 5 or 6 laps I was going at a pretty good clip. But the car was really good at the end of the race.
Commenting on taking the lead on the last restart, “I kind of knew under the red flag that he was getting really loose. I told these guys that I didn't want to sound too confident but I knew we had a good car and he was really loose so I saw that coming. I've got to thank Jim Bodnar, my dad Dave Shullick Sr., the crew, Mark, Enders Racing Engines, Helios Financial Group and everybody for helping us out. Thanks to all the fans also for coming out. I love racing in front of you Canadians. We come up here a couple times a year and you guys come out for us. So I appreciate it. The championship is not over by a long stretch. There are three races left – Oswego, Star and Thompson. The car is running good and we just have to keep it going.”
Mike Lichty, who gained some ground on that same restart as Shullick mentioned, said of the situation, “I don't know if some thing broke on the 97 but he kind of checked the two cars that were ahead of me. The bottom was open and I just took an opportunity. It was a good run. We started 18th and we definitely didn't have the greatest car. But everybody worked hard today. I'm happy to come out second. I want to thank Reed's Salvage, Patco Transportation and all the Canadian fans for coming out.”
Ben Seitz, who has been a winner at Delaware in the past, parked it in third at race end. “The car was good. We had a good run. It was a tough race. There was a lot of back and forth battling among the drivers. The oil in the middle of the race pretty much ruined the racetrack. Everyone was slipping and sliding. It was a tough We lost a spot on that last restart when the 97 didn't take off. I think something was breaking on the car. I don't know what happened but it kind of cost us a spot. I need to thank my sponsors Sam Lorusso and Cape Cod Aggregates. We'll take our third and fight hard at Oswego.”
Trent Stephens (#19) of Ravenna, Ohio led the opening 48 laps of the event before being passed by Tim Jedrzejek (#97) of Independence, Ohio. Just prior to that lead change there was a fierce on-track battle around lap thirty between Stephens, Tim Jedrzejek, and Ben Seitz for the top spot.
At the midway mark it was Stephens holding off a pressuring Timmy J, Seitz, Dave Shullick and Jeff Locke. Tim Ice, Dan Bowes, Lichty, Witkum, Kyle Edwards, Dave McKnight, Mark Sammut and Rob Summers were in the chase.
The race contained six cautions and one extended red for refueling while the safety crew cleaned up an oil down. Affected by cautions were Danny Shirey, Alison Cumens, BJ McDonald, Ryan Coniam, Jon McKennedy, Rob Summers, Mark Sammut and Dave McKnight.
On the second-last caution Shullick would make his move getting the best of Jedrzejek, with a right front tire going down, and pulling to a half-straight lead almost immediately.
Caution would fly once more on lap 66. When the 21 of Ed Witkum spins.
On that final restart Mike Lichty (#84) of Innerkip, Ontario would manage to vault himself from sixth place all the way up to second where he would finish. Ben Seitz (#17) of Bourne, MA would finish third, followed by Jeff Locke, and Trent Stephens in the top five.
Locke, who won his first career ISMA feature on a Friday night at Delaware, was once again in contention. “We had a good run. We finished fourth. We lost the brakes half way through and it kind of put a damper on things. It was a tough race. The track was slick and I'm loosing my brakes. It was one of the hardest races I've driven. But the car was really good and we're looking forward to the rest of the year. These guys work hard for us to come home fourth and to come here and have a good time. We appreciate all the fans for sticking with us.”
Trent Stephens, who had a much better finish in August than he had had in May at Delaware, commented, “I guess I had bad luck. I think when I was leading, the track got oiled down. It kind of screwed me up. It bothered me because I think I was the first one hitting it. I didn't know what the heck was going on. By the time I realized there was something on the track it was too late. I just had a lot of bad luck. I think I had a lot better car than fifth. I think I probably had a second or first place car. Sometimes you just don't get lucky. I definitely have to thank all my crew. They've done a real good job especially the last couple weeks. We had a rough time in New England. Then we came back and went through the car again. And it was pretty damn quick tonight. We'll regroup and move on to Oswego and hope the car is this good there.”
Tim Ice, Ed Witkum, Kyle Edwards, Dan Shirey and Dan Bowes rounded out the top ten.
Shullick's victory also earned him the top-spot in the two-race Harvey Lennox Memorial Series. Ben Seitz and Jeff Locke took the second and third place Series honors. Each received a plaque and check from Series sponsors PATCO Transportation, Murray's Transmission, and Arctic Equipment. The tenth place finisher Dan Bowes received $182 check in memory of the late Harv Lennox, commemorating his 182 wins.
On Sept. 5th ISMA heads to the 22nd running of the Bud Light Super Nationals, a part of the 3-day Budweiser International Classic weekend at Oswego Speedway. Shullick Jr. is the defending champion of this event.
ISMA Event #9 Delaware Speedway Harvey Lennox Memorial Series
August 21, 2015
Heat 1 – Ed Witkum Jr, Jon McKennedy, Ben Seitz, Kyle Edwards, Alison Cumens, Mike McVetta, Kevin Jaycox Jr
Heat 2 – Dan Shirey, Dan Bowes, Timmy Jedrzejek, Dave Shullick Jr, Mark Sammut, Dave McKnight, BJ McDonald
Heat 3 – Trent Stephens, Jeff Locke, Tim Ice, Rob Summers, Mike Lichty, Ryan Coniam
Feature (75) – 1 Dave Shullick Jr (95), 2 Mike Lichty (84), 3 Ben Seitz (17), 4 Jeff Locke (37), 5 Trent Stephens (19), 6 Tim Ice (65), 7 Ed Witkum Jr (21), 8 Kyle Edwards (11), 9 Dan Shirey (49), 10 Dan Bowes (25), 11 Timmy Jedrzejek (97), 12 BJ McDonald (4), 13 Mark Sammut (78), 14 Rob Summers (74), 15 Dave McKnight (70), 16 Kevin Jaycox Jr (5), 17 Jon McKennedy (61), 18 Ryan Coniam (46), 19 Alison Cumens (39), 20 Mike McVetta (22).
Oswego, NY (Sept. 5, 2015) - The day at Oswego Speedway did not start out well for Timmy Jedrzejek and the Lane Racing team when they blew a rear end in practice. They almost called it quits, but instead the team went to work and got the car repaired in time to take the last time trial of the afternoon. From there it was on to a second place in a heat and a sixth place starting spot in the the 22nd annual Oswego Speedway Super Nationals 60, after which Jedrzejek would come home with his third win in the prestigious event. The win brought his Oswego Speedway winged career feature win mark up to six and was worth $6,000.
The Independence, Ohio driver replayed his exciting road to victory.
“What a race. I don't know how long it took us to go from sixth to the lead, maybe twenty laps. But I knew Mikey was coming up through as fast as I did and I knew he was there. We ran some more laps and I said, okay he's not too close to my bumper. I got down there in lap traffic and the slow cars slid up a little bit and there there goes Mikey. I said damn, now I'm running for second. And then I just started to stay with him. He'd get me by two-three car lengths and just started maintaining that. I knew we were still in the game. I said there's 30 laps or so to go. The cautions came out and then the reds came out. That always changes the race a little bit. Mikey and I were so evenly matched. He might have been a tick faster on some laps and I might have been a tick faster on other laps. I was able to get a couple good runs on him on restart, coming off four and shutting underneath him and I'd get almost up to him but he drove in so deep into one, which Mikey always does here. His car just does that here and he's able to hold it in there. It just wasn't enough to make me feel he knew I was there. He never saw me and that's why I got out of there. I did have a couple of those good runs and at that point I thought maybe we can get another shot at him. The lap traffic was what made it happen.
“I saw on the board that there were six laps to go and there was a line of lap traffic in front of us. I said this was my only shot I had at this. What happened was the same kind of thing. Mikey went down into one on the outside of a lap car and the lap car slipped up. I went by on the bottom. We were all banging wheels coming out of two and half way down the backstretch. Nobody lifted and we made it around. I came around and saw the white flag and said wow, if I can hold on for one more lap, we have this. It was amazing. My hats off to Mikey. We've raced so much side by side this year and in previous years when I was in the 32 and like I told him, it's always fun and a joy to race with him. I knew it wasn't fun for him tonight, but it is usually fun and we respect each other so well.
“We have an amazing team here. Dr Mom and School I Cool and all the other backers on this team, Enerco/Mr. Heater and more. The team never gave up today. We blew a rear end in practice and over revved the motor. We made the first call that we were done for the day, but the crew didn't accept that and just never gave up. They rebuilt the rear end and changed valve springs in the motor and it was a gamble. A lot of times those things don't work out so good. I really appreciate everything and the equipment they gave me today to drive. It's really a joy to be around this team.”
Lichty's comments were short and to the point. He felt a slower car might have cost him his fifth Oswego career win. He described his loss of the lead near race end. “I got up along side of him in one, showed him a wheel, he didn't give me any room and he drove me into the fence. And, I lost a race. Hats off to Timmy. I have a lot of respect of Timmy as a driver. It was also a great run for DJ, coming from the back of the pack. But, I thought it was our race. I have to thank everybody at Reed's Salvage, Patco Transportation, Level Performance and Hoosier Tire East.
ISMA point leader Dave Shullick did not have a great day either after a wreck in time trials. He was quite satisfied with his third place finish. “After the day we've had and starting dead last in the feature, I'd have to say I'm happy with a third place. It took some work by everyone to get us here. It was a good run for us and congrats to Timmy J on the win.”
Alison Cumens and Danny Bowes led the 23-car field to green, after attrition had pared down the car count by four going into the 60-lap feature, and it was Bowes taking the point. The Byfield, Mass. driver held onto the point for 11 laps before Timmy Jedrzejek moved in to take over leaving Bowes, Cumens, Mark Sammut, Mike Lichty and Chris Perley the nearest challengers.
Red fell on lap 14 when the 74 of Rob Summers came off turn four in a ball of flames and headed to the pits. The incident left the track safety crew to lay down a lot of speedy dry and ironically, while sitting on the track waiting, the 46 of Ryan Coniam was also seen to be smoking and off he went into the pits. Pitting in the interim were Mark Sammut, Dave McKnight and Kevin Jaycox, who would not return.
Back underway, it was Jedrzejek, Bowes and Lichty next up with Perley moving into fourth by Cumens.
Timmy J began to built up a healthy lead but Lichty was on the move and by lap 20 he had Jedrzejek in his sites. Bowes ran third with Perley and Cumens the top five. Trent Stephens, Dave Shullick, Eddie Witkum, Jeff Locke and Tim Ice ran in the top ten.
But, as the 97 began to lap tail end cars, Lichty was able to use those same cars to wrest the lead from Timmy J on lap 24 and he began to build up some distance over the 97 and the 95 of Shullick.
Unfortunately, red fell again just before the halfway mark when the 39 of Cumens blew up, causing her to leap out of the car to avoid hot liquids and causing several cars to slide around in turn one. Called in on this cleanup were the 65 of Tim Ice and the 27 of Jamie Timmons., neither of whom would restart.
Lichty was able to pull away from the 97 of Jedrzejek on the restart but only by a car length or two. The 72 of Eric Shirey, a lap car, sat between the 97 and the 95 of Shullick as Bowes held off Perley. Stephens, Witkum, Jeff Locke, Dan Shirey, Ben Seitz, McKnight and Sammut were the on-track remnants of the increasing attrition.
Lichty led the way to lap 35, when yellow fell again, this time for the 37 of Jeff Locke which hit in turn three. The car was flat-bedded off the speedway.
Jedrzejek was able to make one of his runs at Lichty on this restart, but it did not stick and the race was on to a long green streak. Lichty, Jedrzejek and Shullick remained the top three as Trent Stevens was able to sneak by the battling Bowes and Perley, for fourth.
With ten to go, it looked like Lichty was about to take his second win of the season. But as Jedrzejek described above, lap traffic was about to play the game changer when with 3 to go, the 84 and 97 ran up on the 49 of Shirey and as they did, Jedrzejek made the move for the lead as Lichty lost ground passing the 49.
Jedrzejek came across for the victory with Lichty and Shullick copping podium finishes. Trent Stephens held onto the fourth place spot with Chris Perley 8-time winged winner at Oswego, with the majority of the total coming at the Super Nationals, in fifth
Stephens, experiencing an up and down season, liked his fourth place. “I actually had a really good run. This is the first time in a while at Oswego that I had a really good car. It wasn't very good during the day but we kept working on it. It turned out to be a pretty good race car then. Starting fourteenth and getting up to fourth is something I'm pretty happy with. That probably by far one of the better races we've had this year. This is two good runs in a row so hopefully we can keep going from here . I've got to thank all my sponsors, Kasper Auto Group, PPG, Shaefer's Racing Oil, Real Wheels, Landom Springs, and my entire crew. The season has been rough on them.”
Perley, struggling of late to get that first win of the season, commented, “This was good, I was really happy to finish fifth. I have nobody to blame but myself. The crew worked really hard on the car and we got some speed back today, but I still can't race anyone. I still can't pass anyone. Maybe I'm too old! When I finally got by the 25 I could check out and be gone. But when I'm behind somebody and I'm running slower, the car is loose. When I spun out there it was nice to get my spot back. I saw the fireball (the 74) down there and I didn't know what I was seeing. When it came over the radio, I checked up and spun. There was a lot of oil on the track already before that. There seemed to be a lot of cars dumping oil. Everything on the car is covered. I wish we could have run good at one of these Oswego races for Ed (Shea). They (Hoosier) came out with a little different rear tire and it seemed there was more passing out there tonight. But, I'm just going to keep plugging until we figure it out. It's on to Star.”
ISMA Supermodified 22nd Bud Light Super Nationals
ISMA Supermodified Bud Light Supernationals (60-laps): 1. 97 - Timmy Jedrzejek, 2. 84 - Mike Lichty, 3. 95 - Dave Shullick Jr, 4. 19 - Trent Stephens, 5. 11 - Chris Perley, 6. 25 - Dan Bowes, 7. 21 - Ed Witkum Jr, 8. 78 - Mark Sammut, 9. 70 - Dave McKnight, 10. 49 - Danny Shirey, 11. 17 - Ben Seitz, 12. 72 - Eric Shirey, 13. 37 - Jeff Locke, 14. 96 - Lou LeVea Sr, 15. 39 - Allison Cumens, 16. 65 - Tim Ice, 17. 27 - Jamie Timmons, 18. 18 - Howard Page, 19. 5 - Brian Sobus, 20. 46 - Ryan Coniam, 21. 74 - Rob Summers, 22. 07 - Kevin Jaycox Jr, 23. 1 - Kyle Edwards
Heat #2 (10-laps): 1. 46 - Ryan Coniam, 2. 78 - Mark Sammut, 3. 11 - Chris Perley, 4. 37 - Jeff Locke, 5. 19 - Trent Stephens, 6. 17 - Ben Seitz, 7. 07 - Kevin Jaycox Jr, 8. 5 - Brian Sobus
Heat #3 (10-laps): 1. 84 - Mike Lichty, 2. 25 - Dan Bowes, 3. 1 - Kyle Edwards, 4. 21 - Eddie Witkum Jr, 5. 49 - Danny Shirey, 6. 18 - Howard Page, 7. 22 - Mike McVetta
ISMA Fast Time Trialer: Mike Lichty (sponsored by May's Polynesian Motel & Mini Mart ISMA Hard Charger: Dave Shullick Jr. (sponsored by Support the DT100 for Make-A-Wish NH Radical Race Gear ISMA Lap Leader: Mike Lichty
Bonus Added Feature Purse: Sponsored by Cape Cod Aggregates
Lee, NH (Aug. 7, 2015) – Ohioan Dave Shullick Jr., was no a stranger to victory lane when he pulled into it at Lee USA last night. He had won the Ollie Silva Classic in 2008 driving the Clyde Booth 61. Friday night he brought his Bodnar-built 95, nicknamed Fire, to continue his quest for a first-ever ISMA championship in 2015. And, winning the 75-lap grind over some of winged supermodified's best, certainly helped his cause. Going into Lee he was the point leader. He came away with an even stronger lead.
Said Shullick afterwards, “The first two runners were running pretty hard out there. Really I didn't show my hand until the last ten laps. I had a pretty tight car until ten to go and then I used it up in those last ten laps. I figure it was time to let it all go. I didn't mind the refueling because it let me know what's going on around me. When you're leading you don't know whose doing what. I saw who was moving a little bit. And the 61 came out of nowhere toward the end but he knows the track pretty well. I told Jon today that he was going to be the one I was racing with. So, I researched him on MyLaps to see what he did the last race so I'd be ready for him.”
Defending race winner Jon McKennedy had moved from 20th to 2nd and was definitely the hard charger of the race. “It was a good run. We struggled in our heat race. We had to start way back. We had a good car. It was a little inconsistent. I tried something for the end. I think at the end we had the car to beat we just ran out of laps. From 20th to second is a good night. I want to thank the crew. They worked pretty hard today. Thanks to all the fans... there was a good crowd today.”
Jeff Locke, who had started 11th was pleased with his podium finish. “It was pretty good. I was just riding around for a while, picking off cars along the way. I can't thank these guys enough. It's a good finish for us, a podium finish. Shawmut Equipment, Locke Crane Service. It is nice to be home, twenty minutes from here in Chester and to finish third. It was great for our team. All these guys work hard every week to make sure we get a good race car and go out and have fun. We'll take it. It was a good run for Dave Shullick and Jon McKennedy. They are fierce competitors. You have to bring your A game with these guys. Thanks to my family for putting up with me. Man this feels good. Waterford tomorrow is totally different. It's got more grip which is better for the driver.”
Ohio's Tim Ice held the pole in the 23-car starting field and he quickly took off to take the lead. As Bowes, Shullick, Mark Sammut, Dan Shirey, Timmy Jedrzejek and Chris Perley fell in to challenge.
Yellow fell early when Dave Duggan and Jamie Timmons tangled in turn four. Both would restart, but Timmons then called it a night.
The race restarted but only for a lap when Joey Scanlon spun on the backstretch. Justin Belfiore pitted out of the race in the interim with a broken wing.
Back underway, Ice took off as Bowes battled Shullick for second. Chris Perley was on the move as he too tried to get by the 25 of Bowes.
Yellow flew again on lap 27 when the 14 of Jon Gambuti was parked off turn two.
On this restart, Shullick was able to close the gap on Ice, as Perley finally got by Bowes for third. But yellow flew quickly for the 5 of Scanlon and another restart ensued.
Green fell on the race as it approahed the lap 30 mark. Ice pulled away from Shullick and Perley while Bowes, Timmy Jedrzejek, Mark Sammut, Jeff Locke, Danny Shirey, Mike McVetta, Ben Seitz and Eddie Witkum were still in the hunt.
With a $1000 midway mark bonus donated by Shea Concrete, Ice was not about to let up on his lead. And on lap 38 he collected that $1000, and that would be a comfort to Ice later in the event.
The leader Ice began to lap slower cars at the rear as the race continued green. Shullick was one lap car away from Ice on lap 45 while Jedrzejek moved into third and Jeff Locke fourth as Perley's 11 began to slip backwards. Mark Sammut, Mike McVetta, Perley, Danny Shirey, Ben Seitz and Jon McKennedy had moved into the top ten by lap 50.
On lap 53, Shullick was finally able to pass by Ice for the lead and left the 65 behind facing Timmy J, Locke and more.
Yellow fell on lap 56 for Mark Sammut, who was facing the infield. McVetta, Bowes, Summers, Perley and Sammut all ended up pitside on this slowdown. Summers and Perley would not return. On the restart of this circuit, Ben Seitz slowed and stopped off turn four and this would bring the race to a halt for refueling due to the allotted number of fuel caution laps were used.
Misfortune befell Ice at this point as it had been deemed he had passed before the green on the previous caution and he was relegated to the rear despite some protest. Seitz returned to the fray and the race resumed with less than 20 laps remaining.
Shullick pulled easily away but Jedrzejek, Locke, Shirey and now McKennedy were strong challengers behind.
The final race yellow fell on lap 62 when Bowes, who had been running near the front earlier, had incurred a right rear flat which he would change and return to the back.
Shullick was not to be denied this win and would become the first repeat winner of the ISMA season, after notching a win at Delaware on opening day. But back behind the racing was still fast and furious as McKennedy had come alive to challenge Locke who had gotten by Jedrzejek on the restart and Shirey. McKennedy dove under Timmy J on lap 63 and was by Locke for second on lap 65. Behind Locke was now third after passing the 97 with Shirey now in the top five on his first-ever trip to the New Hampshire 3/8ths mile oval.
And when Shullick crossed under the checkers, McKennedy held second with Locke, Jedrzejek and Shirey trailing in a nose to tail line.
Timmy Jedrzejek, one of the Ohions who had made an impact on the finish said later, “We had a solid run tonight. Just got a little tight at the end. We gave up a couple spots there. We have a lot to be proud of tonight. We had a good car. It's tricky here. I don't have a lot of time at this track. I think we paced ourself real nice. We were at a good spot running second there for a while. Congrats to DJ and the 95. We had nothing for him. We gave the second away on the last restart. I just couldn't hold the car down and the 61 and 37 got by me. Congratulations to the top three. We're in one piece and we're ready for Waterford tomorrow.”
Probably the most excited with his top five was Amherst, Ohio's Dan Shirey, a second generation driver for the Stout team. Said Shirey “Obviously I had a good day. Started off with a heat win and got a fifth in the feature. We made a lot of adjustments and they were the right ones. Steve, Rich and the whole crew worked their butts off all day to put a good car under me. It got a little tight toward the end. I thought I could put a wheel on Timmy but he's a veteran driver and he's good at keeping his position. Hats off to every body. It was a tricky track. For my first time here I had a good run. No complaints. Thanks to the whole ACME crew.”
ISMA Event # 7 Lee USA Speedway Ollie Silva Memorial Classic
August 7, 2015
Heat 1 - Eddie Witkum Jr., Tim Ice, Dan Bowes, Mike McVetta, Joey Scanlon, Jon Gambuti, Dave Duggan, Kevin Jaycox Jr. (dns)
Heat 2- Danny Shirey, Timmy Jedrzejek, Jeff Locke, Mike Netishen, Alison Cumens, Rob Summers, Jon McKennedy, Jamie Timmons
Heat 3- Chris Perley, Mark Sammut, Dave Shullick Jr., Trent Stephens, Ben Seitz, Mike Lichty, Justin Belfiore, Tom Tombarello
Feature (75) 1. Dave Shullick Jr (95), 2. Jon McKennedy (61), 3. Jeff Locke (37), 4. Timmy Jedrzejek (97), 5. Danny Shirey (49), 6. Alison Cumens (39), 7. Ed Witkum (21), 8. Mark Sammut (78), 9. Mike Lichty (84), 10. Trent Stephens (9), 11. Mike McVetta (22), 12. Ben Seitz (17), 13. Tim Ice (65), 14. Mike Netishen (55), 15. Dan Bowes (25), 16. Jon Gambuti (14), 17. Rob Summers (74), 18. Chris Perley (11), 19. Dave Duggan (51), 20. Joey Scanlon (5), 21. Jamie Timmons (27), 22. Justin Belfiore (98), 23. Tommy Tombarello (7)