Date: 5/8/2011 12:14:37 AM

By Jim Dutko

May 6, 2011


FRANKLIN PA. With lightning flashing all around H&H Motorsports Tri-City speedway kicked off the 2011 season with a lightning quick track. Opening night winners included: Mike Knight (4 Your Car Connection ULMS Super Late Models), Max Blair (Welding Technologies/Shaw industries FASTRAK Late Models), Bob Sloss (Northwestern Heating Open Pro-Stocks), Rich Michael Jr. (M&D Paving E-Mods), and Mother Nature took the R.K. Virgile Thunder Cars.
For the first time in his career Mike Knight scored his first career feature win at the big half mile and he picked a big "Knight"to do it in. With the ULMS sanctioning everybody knew what the competition would be like tonight, and they were not disappointed. "I have to say the quality of the field was amazing. When I pulled in there was hitter, after hitter, after hitter coming in, and I thought I better have my stuff together" said Knight after the races. "When you have guys like these racing is so much cleaner I raced three inches away from Dave (Scott) for 4 laps and there was not even a scratch on my car! I had 1300's and 1350's on for tires tonight and they were not even touched. I love it that I don't have to buy certain tires to come to Tri-City it makes the racing for drivers and fans so much better!" said Knight.
David Scott and Matt Lux led the field down to starter Mark Mathews Double greens and it was on from there. Scott grabbed the lead off the start and kept it until the first cautions came out on lap 4 as Darrell Bossard and then on lap 7 Bump Headman spun. When racing resumed there was a traffic jam as Matt Lux got into turn 1 a little hard and washed up the track forcing Chris Hackett and half the field to check up resulting in Hackett getting spun out with damage. When racing resumed it looked like Scott may have things under control but Knight -time was starting to creep in. On laps 10-13 Scott and Knight went wheel to wheel battling back and forth with Knight coming out on top. That was until Lap 16 when eighth place driver Derek Frank crushed the front stretch wall and forced his early departure on the hook. On the restart it looked as though the Ashville Assassin Dick Barton was shot out of a cannon and moved into second from his 11th place starting spot and tried to
reel in the leader but it was not to be. Following Knight and Barton was Russell King, Scott, and Lux, Scott and Dennis Lunger picked up the heat wins. Robbie Blair in his heat race set a new track record at 17.533 over 103 MPH breaking the previous record held by Billy Moyer.
Max Blair scored his 14th career win in the 20 lap FASTRAK Late Model feature. Staring from the pole position was newcomer Newt Tackett and the veteran Rob Blair to his outside. Newt would jump all over the field as he would lead 16 laps but that was not enough. The race was slowed for the first of two spins for George Kowatic bunching up the field into Deleware formation. On the restart something broke on the Mike Blose car while running third bring out the caution and forcing him out of the race. When the race resumed it looked like Tackett was about to get his first Tri-City win but lapped traffic was put into play on lap 16 when Max Blair chased him down. Coming off turn 2 Max used the high side to get door to door with Tackett who had to check up and allowing Max go on for the victory. After Max and Tackett was Rob Blair, Josh Holtgraver and Kyle Lukon, Tackett and Max scored the heat wins over the 20 car field.
"This place is awesome there was racing all over the track tonight. You could race high, low, in the middle anywhere you wanted for anybody that thought it was a one groove track look again!" said Blair. "I am not 100% sure my plans for this year but I will make it out here as often as possible for 2011" Blair said during the Turn 5 broadcast earlier in the night.
Wins are hard to come by but when it takes 30 years to get career win #1 it tastes so much sweeter. That is the story for our Pro-Stock Feature Winner Bob Sloss who bought a new car in the off season and set his goals high. Sloss started on the outside of the front row and never looked back to lead all 15 laps in his Joy Mining number 44s.
With Jackson Humanic and Sloss on the front row fans knew this was going to be a barn burner. Humanic was the odds on favorite with his breaking the track record on three consecutive laps during the heat with a lap of 20.106. Humanic would fall from contention on lap 4 with a flat tire leaving Sloss clear sailing to the finish. Charging Randy Wyant finished second followed by Tommy Fox, Curtis J Bish, Dave Ferringer rounding out the top 5. Humanic won the heat race.
A surprise visitor paid off as Rich Michael Jr. winning the 15-lap E-Mod feature for his second career feature win at Tri-City Speedway tonight. Michael started in the fourth position and took the lead by lap 2 and was never challenged to the finish.
Mike Eschrich and Carl McKinney led the field down to the green , but that would be short lived as New Rookie Jason Engles looked his machine in turn 2. Then on lap 2 Eschrich went into turn 3 too hard the car washed up the track and let Michael slip by on the bottom. Taking a big lead by lap 4 when the second caution of the event came out as debris from Mike Potosky forced his early retirement from the event and finished 14th. Then things in the back of the pack started heating up as 11th place starter Shawn Shingledecker and 12th place starter Justin Carlson went on the prowl. They were dicing in and out of traffic on a mission to the front until the final caution of the night came out on lap #13. Their charge was not enough as Michael held on for the victory over Carlson, Esrich, Shingledecker, and Dan Davies. Mike Potosky and Justin Carlson picked up the heat race wins over the 17 car field.
The R.K.Virgile Thunder Car feature was sent out onto the speedway only to see the rain drops come down more and more forcing the postponement of the race until next week. Charlie McMillen picked up the heat win for the division.
Tri-City Speedway returns to action next Friday Night with a meet and greet secession for the 4 Your Car Connection Super Late Models on the front stretch at intermission. They will be joined by the Welding Technologies/Shaw Industries FASTRAK Late Models, M&D Paving E-Mods, Northwestern Heating Open Pro-Stocks and double feature for the R.K.Virgile Thunder Cars. Gates open at 5:30 hot laps starting at 6:45 and racing at 7:30. Adult general admission is still just $10 students $5 and pit passes $25.
Tri-City Speedway is owned and operated by H&H Motorsports, which has promoted racing at the popular facility since in 2009. In 2011, Tri-City will host Friday night competition featuring the Super Late Models, FASTRAK Late Models, E- Mods, Open Pro Stocks and Thunder Cars at the Venango County half-mile dirt oval. Tri-City is located seven miles north of Franklin, Pa., off State Route 417.

ULMS SUPER LATE MODELS (25 laps): 1. MIKE KNIGHT, 2. Dick Barton, 3. Russell King, 4. David Scott, 5. Matt Lux, 6. Dennis Lunger, 7. Rob Blair, 8. Bump Headman, 9. Greg Oaks, 10. Brent Rhebergen, 11. Darrell Bossard, 12. Billy Henry, 13. Wally Fox, 14. Andy Boozel, 15. Dereck Frank, 16. Chris Hackett, 17. Dutch Davies

FASTRAK LATE MODELS (20 laps): 1. MAX BLAIR, 2. Newt Tackett, 3. Rob Blair, 4. Josh Holtgraver, 5. Klye Lukon, 6. Mickey Wright, 7. John Volpe, 8. Tommy Snyder, 9. Rod Laskey, 10. Bobby Whitling, 11. Damian Bidwell, 12. Jamie Brown, 13. Matt Latta, 14. Kyle Zimmerman, 15. Steve Hollabaugh, 16. Alan McQuarrie, 17. Bradley Streczwlk, 18. George Kowatic, 19. Mike Blose, 20. Jason Reagle

OPEN PRO-STOCKS (15 laps): 1. Bob SLOSS, 2. Randy Wyant, 3. Tommy Fox, 4. Curtis J. Bish, 5. Dave Ferringer, 6. Joe Plesniak, 7. Jackson Humanic, 8. Chris Withers, DNS Don Kramer

E-MODS (15 laps): 1. RICH MICHAEL JR., 2. Justin Carlson, 3. Mike Eschrich, 4. Shawn Shingledecker, 5. Dan Davies, 6. Shane Crotty, 7. Butch Southwell, 8. Ron Roncaglione, 9. Brian Douglas, 10. Carl McKinney, 11. Jason Engles, 12. Tim Peterson, 13. Bruce Powell, 14. Mike Potosky, 15. Ben Asel DNS John Boardman, David Atkinson

THUNDER CAR (12 laps): Rained-Out (Make up Next week May 13)

Return-to-Tri-City Speedway News and Results