Malta, NY – The Albany-Saratoga Speedway honored won of its most popular drivers Friday night and it was only fitting that one of the drivers who raced with him the most sat in victory lane at night’s end. Mike Ronca passed away suddenly during the off season three years ago and ever since the Great Race Place has honored him with the Hungry Mike Ronca Memorial event. For the second straight season Kenny Tremont, Jr. picked up the win.
“We won this race last year,” Tremont said. “The Ronca’s are a great family and Mike was a super guy. He would do anything for you so it certainly is an honor to win anything in Mike’s honor.”
The top three finishers in the Upstate GMC Dealers DIRTcar Modified feature event earned extra money while the seventh place finisher in each of the night’s five feature events earned a $100 Hungry Mike bonus. Kenny Tremont, Jr. earned an extra $350 for his win while the second place and third place finishers earned an extra $250 and $150 respectfully.
In other action Mike Ostrander picked up the 25 lap Sportsman feature event while Kim Duell (DIRTcar Pro Stocks), Rob Maxon (Limited Sportsman) and Bill Duprey (Don Don’s Delights Street Stocks) also earned feature event wins Friday evening.
Mark Kislowski and Jim Nagle led the field to the green with Kislowski taking the early lead over rookie Brett Wright, Nagle, John Lutes, Jr. and Neal Stratton. The front running duo of Kislowski and Wright had pulled away from the field by lap two leaving Lutes and Nagle to battle it out for the third position. Kislowski increased his lead a bit by lap six, opening about a six car length advantage over Wright. The leaders still had a near straightaway advantage over the front runners.
By lap eight Kislowski and Wright were entering traffic for the first time. At the same time 12th place starter Tremont was showing his strength. He was running sixth at the line when lap 12 was completed. The first of three caution flags slowed the event on lap nine when Brett Hearn came to a stop on the front stretch. Not only would Hearn’s night be over but his troubles allowed Peter Britten and Marc Johnson to put a big dent in his 88 point lead in the fight for the track championship.
On the restart Ronnie Johnson and Mike Perrotte would be involved in a jingle that would see the yuke tire pushed out into the speedway, forcing the second caution period. Kislowski lead them all on the restart with Wright, Tremont, Stratton and Lutes following. At the same time Matt Delorenzo headed to the infield, ending his evening.
The third and final caution flag waved on lap 10 when Jeff Strunk and Chris Busta found themselves hooked together exiting turn four. Racing resumed after a quick caution period to separate them with the running order the same as it was on the previous restart. All eyes were on Britten and Marc Johnson as they charged through the field, making up valuable points on Hearn. By lap 19 Britten was up to the sixth position while Johnson was not far behind.
Tremont was able to stay with Kislowski and Wright on the restart and on lap 21 took the second position from Wright. The man from West Sand Lake wasted no time and was all over Kislowski for the lead by lap 23. Meanwhile on lap 25 Britten had moved into the top five with Johnson right on his heels. Britten moved past Stratton for fourth on lap 29.
Up front Tremont was able to get along side of Kislowski on lap 30. The duo ran side by side through traffic however after about a lap and a half Tremont had sole possession of the lead. Britten meanwhile was charging hard.
On the last lap Tremont had checked out however the battle was on for second between Kislowski and Wright. Heading into turn two Wright drove up the track and made contact with Kislowski which allowed Britten to blast past.
In the end Tremont would pick up his second consecutive Hungry Mike Ronca Memorial event win. Britten came from the 14th position to finish second with Wright holding on for third, Kislowski fourth and Johnson fifth. Heat races for the 30 car field were won by Kislowski, Stratton and Wright. Kislowski picked up the $100 Hungry Mike Bonus for leading lap seven.
Mike Ostrander picked up his first win of the season in the 25 lap Sportsman feature event. Ostrander and Jack Swinton led the field to the green with Ostrander taking the early lead. The race would see four caution flags slow the pace during the first seven laps. Once the caution flag fever was extinguished, Ostrander would emerge as the race leader over Nick Lussier and Cody Bleau.
Bleau was able to get along side of Ostrander for the lead on lap 17 with the duo locked in a virtual dead heat at the completion of lap 18. Ostrander regained his advantage before the lap was complete and started to pull away. In the end Ostrander would put this Key Siding and Remodeling/Semenza Homes number 62 in victory lane. Bleau was able to hold on for second with Jeremy Pitts third, Lussier fourth and Chris Johnson fifth. Heat races for the 30 car field were won by Connor Cleveland, Swinton and Mike Burdo. The $100 Hungry Mike Bonus for leading lap seven went to Ostrander.
Kim Duell picked up the $700 to win DIRTcar Pro Stock feature event. The event was scheduled to pay $600 to the winner however at the start of the race the New Life Chaplaincy added an additional $100 to the winners share to make the total keep with the night’s theme of honoring Mike Ronca.
Danny Wood jumped out to the early lead and would hold it until giving way to Bill Smith on lap two. Duell meanwhile was on the charge and on lap eight moved past Smith for the lead. Once out front Duell would not be denied as he brought home his second win of the season. Byron Wescott finished second with Smith third, Brandon Emigh fourth and Robbie Speed fifth. Heat races for the 17 car field were claimed by Wood and Smith. The $100 Hungry Mike Bonus was won by Smith.
Rob Maxon won the 15 lap Limited Sportsman feature event. Jesse Edwards moved out to the early lead and would hold it until lap four when Maxon took over. Once out front Maxon pulled away for the win. Edwards held on for second with Jack Bublak third, David Emigh fourth and Andrew Buff fifth. Heat races for the 21 car field were won by Edwards and Bublak. Maxon picked up the Hungry Mike Bonus.
Bill Duprey won his fourth Don Don’s Delights Street Stock feature event of the season. It was also his second consecutive feature win. Jason Meltz put on pressure for the lead but had to settle for a second place finish. Frank Monroe finished third with Damon Anderson and early race leader Darrell Older completing the top five. Older picked up the Hungry Mike Bonus.
The Albany-Saratoga Speedway returns to action this Friday night with a King of the Catskills qualifier for the Upstate GMC Dealers DIRTcar Modified division. The Featherfoot Warrior Series for the Sportsman division will also be in competition. All other divisions including the Greg’s Towing and Repair Four Cylinders will be on the card.
On Wednesday night July 30th the track will be back in action with an All-Star type double header. The Upstate GMC Dealers DIRTcar Modifieds will compete in a 35 lap, $2,000 to win event. Prior to qualifying for this event the remaining 89 laps of the Brett Hearn promoted Big Show 6 will take place. The Big Show 6 is part of the Super DIRTcar Series. General Admission is $10 for this event. Since the Big Show 6 was considered complete after eight of the nine events were completed, wristbands will not be honored at the show.
Friday, July 18, 2014 – Malta, NY – 3rd Annual Mike Ronca Memorial, Upstate GMC Dealers DIRTcar Modified Results (35 Laps) – 1) Ken Tremont Jr, 2) Peter Britten, 3) Brett Wright, 4) Mark Kislowski, 5) Marc Johnson, 6) Neil Stratton, 7) John Lutes Jr., 8) Elmo Reckner, 9) Don Ronca, 10) Keith Flach, 11) Rich Scagliotta, 12) Rich Ronca, 13) Jimmy Davis, 14) Jeff Strunk, 15) Matt Depew, 16) Jimmy Cottrell, 17) Brian Whittemore, 18) Chris Busta, 19) Justin Barber, 20) Dylan Scribner, 21) Kris Vernold, 22) Mike Minick, 23) Jim Nagle, 24) Jeremy Wilder, 25) Brian Gleason, 26) Ronnie Johnson, 27) Brett Hearn, 28) Mike Perrotte 29) Matt Delorenzo, DNS) Cass Bennett
Sportsman Results (25 Laps) – 1) Mike Ostrander, 2) Cody Bleau, 3) Jeremy Pitts, 4) Nick Lussier, 5) Chris Johnson, 6) Jon Miller, 7) Derrick McGrew, 8) Tim Hartman Jr 9) Jack Swinton, 10) Jack Gentile, 11) Dave Baranowski Jr, 12) Alex Bell, 13) Scott Duell, 14) Joe Orlando, 15) Jack Speshock, 16) Timothy Davis, 17) Connor Cleveland, 18) Nick Anatriello, 19) Hunter Bates, 20) Chad Miller, 21) Adam Gage, 22) Colin Bokus, 23) Mike Burdo, 24) Olden Dwyer, 25) Joey Scarborough, 26) John Proctor, 27) Robert Bublak, 28) Elliott Lussier, 29) Jake Scarborough, 30) Bert Film
Limited Sportsman Results (15 Laps) – 1) Rob Maxon, 2) Jesse Edwards, 3) Jack Bublak, 4) David Emigh, 5) Andrew Buff, 6) Anthony Alger, 7) Christopher Ronca, 8) Brandon Pitcher, 9) Ricky Davis, 10) Ken Conroy, 11) Matt Atwood, 12) Shannon Donnelly, 13) Bruce Schwab, 14) Steve Wagoner, 15) Alissa Cody, 16) Diana Huyck, 17) Zach Daurio, 18) Emily Quinn, 19) Bob Schmidt, 20) Ben Brownell, 21) Ron Casey
DIRTcar Pro Stock Results (25 Laps) – 1) Kim Duell, 2) Byron Wescott, 3) Bill Smith, 4) Brandon Emigh, 5) Robbie Speed, 6) Ken Martin,7) Dan Older, 8) Rob Yetman, 9) Ed Thompson, 10) Danny Wood, 11) Chuck Dumblewski, 12) Kevin Loomis, 13) Randy Brownell, 14) Jeff Washburn, 15) Norm Loubier, 16) Bernie Companion, 17) Dave Depaulo
Don Don’s Delights Street Stock Results (20 Laps) – 1) Bill Duprey, 2) Jason Meltz, 3) Frank Monroe, 4) Scott Lawrence, 5) Damon Anderson, 6) Darrell Older, 7) Josh Coonradt, 8) Jody Thew, 9) Fred Harris, 10) Curt Condon, 11) Paul Braymer, DNS) Dave Stickles, DNS) Luke MacIsaac, DNS) Randy Miller