Ransomville Speedway: Rudolph wins first 358 DIRT Modified featureby jmaloni
by Tana Robinson
Ransomville Speedway Marketing & PR Director
It was another great night last Friday, Aug. 24, as Mother Nature provided perfect weather for racing. Clear blue skies greeted fans, drivers, crews and sponsors, as FindItQuick.com and Firth Jewelers presented a four star program of Mighty Taco Modifieds, Original Pizza Logs Sportsman, Ki-Po Chevrolet Streetstocks and Bobcat of Buffalo Fireballs.
Erick Rudolph of Ransomville captured his first feature win of his career aboard the DIRTcar 358 Modified class. Rudolph took the lead away from Ricky Richner prior to half way and held veterans Pete Bicknell and Chad Brachmann at bay the remaining distance.
Piloting his Snyder Industries Inc.-sponsored No. 25, the third generation driver exited his racer with a big smile. Rudolph has spent much of his career on the asphalt surface, making the switch this year to concentrate mainly on the dirt. While still dabbling in the asphalt mods, his dedication to learning how to best the dirt track paid off last week, as Rudolph bested a field of 22 en route to that first big win. Bicknell, Brachmann, Todd Burley and Scott Just rounded out the top five.
The point's battle in the Mighty Taco Modified couldn't have been scripted any better with the final week of points slated for Friday, Aug. 31. Defending champion Brachmann came into the event four markers ahead of multi-time champion Bicknell. The pair finished second and third with Bicknell in front. This resulted in a tie between the two heading into the final event.
Look for results of this title event in next week's paper.
Don Spatorico of Ransomville captured his first feature of the season aboard the Original Pizza Logs Sportsman division. The defending champion and current points leader has had a very consistent season but until this past week has been unable to crack victory lane. That all changed last Friday night as Spatorico used a move to the inside of rookie Matt Farnham with about five laps remaining and held it the remaining distance. Spatorico and crew were all smiles as they knocked the monkey off their back and collected the big win.
Greg Martin finished in the runner up position followed by Scott Krull, James Henry, and Sandy Pembleton. A total of 20 entries took the initial green. Kevin Wills led the first go round prior to giving way to Krull who held it through lap 15. Farnham would lead the next few before Spatorico took command and never looked back.
Spatorico has a solid lead aboard the point's race heading into the final event. Jesse Cotriss, who sat second in points coming into the night, suffered a mishap trackside as a late race caution slowed the main. Cotriss returned after a trip pit side but needs a lot of help in order to close the margin in the point's battle.
Webb Nashwinter of Ransomville took top honors for the second time in 2012 aboard the 20-lap Ki-Po Chevrolet Streetstock main. Just when it appeared points leader Alex Morris had things well in hand up front, disaster struck for the veteran as he suffered suspension problems under a mid-race caution period while leading. Rookie contender Neil Pafk inherited the lead with Nashwinter in tow.
Nashwinter used a move to the inside of Pafk on lap 13 to secure the point position and never looked back. Jaren Israel capitalized on the Morris misfortune with a second place finish, enabling him to close the margin slightly in the points chase. Jesse Johnston, Gerald Poole and Jake Stefanski rounded out the top five. There are two point shows remaining in this division.
Gary Watier Jr. of Gasport captured his second Bobcat of Buffalo Feature last Friday aboard the 12-lap main. Watier took command at the drop of the green with defending champion Jim Harbison in tow. The pair would pull away from the field and put on a great show for the fans as they ran nose to tail. Harbison looked to the inside of Watier on a couple occasions but to no avail as Watier collected the win. Harbison came home in second followed by Pat O'Keefe, Chris Leone and Jim Stone. Stone continues to show the way in the point's battle with two point races remaining.
Upcoming is King of the Hill Weekend on Friday and Saturday, Sept. 14 and 15
Finditquick.Com / Firth Jewelers Summary
Mighty Taco Modified Feature Finish - Erick Rudolph, Pete Bicknell, Chad Brachman, Todd Burley, Scott Just, Danny Johnson, Phil Vigneri, Boyd MacTavish, Ryan Susice, Steve Schumacher, Chuck Hossfeld, John Smith, Scott Kerwin, Ricky Richner, Dave Just, Sam Crogan, Justin Wright, Brian Sage, Tommy Flannigan, Robbie Krull and Jeff McGinnis. Heat winners - Ricky Richner (eight cars), Scott Just (seven cars), and Tommy Flannigan (seven cars).
Original Pizza Logs Sportsman Feature Finish - Don Spatorico, Greg Martin, Scott Krull, James Henry, Sandy Pembleton, Mike Williams, Jipp Ortiz, Don Barnes, Jesse Cotriss, Matt Farnham, Chris Burek, Jim Zimmerman, Nate Reynolds, Brett Martin, Andy Smith, Billy Coleman, Kevin Wills, Allan Wills, Dave Conant and Justin Sharp. FindItQuick.com Heat winners - Jim Zimmerman (seven cars), Sandy Pembleton (seven cars), and Jesse Cotriss (seven cars).
Ki-Po Chevrolet Streetstock Feature Finish - Webb Nashwinter, Jaren Israel, Jesse Johnston, Gerald Poole, Jake Stefanski, Mike Short, Derrick Borkenhagen, Ryan Stephenson, Brandon Sherwood, Andrew Neiderhoffer, Cliff Brucker, Randy Zimmerman, Charles Harvey, Pat Dell, Alex Morris, Kyle Wendt, Pat Burek and Neil Pafk. Heat winners - Webb Nashwinter (10 cars) and Neil Pafk (nine cars).
Bobcat Of Buffalo Fireball Feature Finish - Gary Watier, Jim Harbison, Patrick O'Keefe, Chris Leone, Jim Stone, Marika Morris, Chad Lederhouse, Dick Wilkinson, Steve Matson, Matt Haersock, Anthony Hermanson, Dave Dussault, Jamie Woods, Brandon Otto, Brett Rowles and Ashley Harbison. Heat winners - Gary Watier Jr. (nine cars) and Jim Harbison (seven cars).