Bill Holmes and Ray Bliss Lead the Pack at Genesee
Rich Vleck, BATAVIA, NY, (August 27, 2016)- Bill Holmes was able officially shake off his early-season bad luck with a win Saturday Night in Crate Late Model competition.
Holmes, of E. Concord, took the lead from J.J. Mazur on lap 12 in turn four and then held a comfortable lead to the finish for his first win at Genesee this season, becoming the 10th different winner in 15 races in the division this season. Despite capturing a pair of runner-up finishes thus far at Genesee in 2016, Holmes noted after the race that he felt his team had recently turned the corner and found some speed and it finally paid off this weekend. Mazur would settle for second while Jimmy Johnson completed the podium. Canadian Sam Pennachio was fourth while Dave DuBois edged out Beamer Guzzardi for fifth to keep the point battle tight heading in to the final week.
Ray Bliss has had his share of bad luck throughout the course of the season in Sportsman competition, but everything went his way on Saturday night as he scored his second win of the season. The Warsaw veteran started from the outside pole but quickly bolted in to the lead on the opening lap then held a steady distance over point leader Kyle Inman throughout the 20-lap event. Inman would be able to secure the track title with his runner-up finish. Brian Bellinger was third while Ray Smith and Matt Steffenhagen complete the top five.
Three weeks ago, last time the 360 Late Models were in competition, John Zimmerman was involved in a heavy crash on the on the front stretch. After spending much of that hiatus feeling the effects of that incident and putting the car back together, he made it all worth it as he scored his first win of the season. Zimmerman took the lead on lap 11, just after a frightening crash that saw leader Brian Kotarski slam hard in to the turn four wall after contact with Dave DuBois. Kotarski would walk away on his own power and when the race restarted Zimmerman walked away from the field. Zimmerman would be followed across the line by Tom Baker, who scored a season-best finish of second. DuBois ran back up to third to secure the division title a week early, while Austin Kotarski and Tommy Butler rounded out the top five.
Byron Dewitt scored the win in the Street Stock feature to continue his pursuit to claw back in to the point battle. Dewitt, of LeRoy, took the lead from Bob Babbitt on lap six and appeared to be the class of the field, but the final three laps got interesting for the former champion as he lost his brakes and had to use his experience to hang on for his second consecutive win, his fourth in 2016. Babbitt would settle for second while Butch Zimmerman was third to hang on to 10 point lead heading in to the final week. Mike Jackson and Ryan Allen rounded out the top five.
Dante Mancuso had a fast car in the Mini Stock feature, but waited patiently until lap 12 to clear leader Deanna Shepard and hold on for his fifth win of the year, his second in a row. Mancuso, of Batavia, knew the top line was quicker, but while he tried to pass on the bottom, Brad Shepard was applying pressure from behind for second and at times appeared to be destined to win but when Mancuso took the lead, he weaved through the lapped traffic the best and got enough distance for the win. Deanna Shepared would finish second, just edging out father Brad, whose third place effort was more than enough to clinch the track title. Chris Leone and Mike Taddonio rounded out the top five.
Cole Hicks outdueled Eddie Kowalczyk to be the first to win his seventh Bandit feature of the year, and in the process gained a few critical points in the championship chase. The Brockport Teenager led until lap seven when Kowalczyk took over the lead, but only two laps later he spun around while out front, giving Hicks the lead back for good. Jessica Traxler would complete the podium for the second-straight week.
The regular season comes to an end next Saturday, September 3, as BDK Construction and Trucking presents a Super 6 program featuring a $2,000-to-win Russ Prentice Memorial for the 360 Late Models. For more information, visit www.Genesee-Speedway.com.
Genesee Speedway Results: 8/27/2016- Warrior House of WNY & Operation Injured Solider Night
MHL Performance Crate Late Model Feature (20 Laps)- BILL HOLMES, JJ Mazur, Jimmy Johnson, Sam Pennachio, Dave DuBois, Beamer Guzzardi, Zach Wiech, Jon Rivers, Randy Ralyea, John Venuto, Sherman Gage, T.J. Downs, Nick Snayczuk.
Lap Leaders- Mazur 1-11, Holmes 12-20.
Heat Winners- Pennachio, Mazur.
Zeliff Farms Sportsman Feature (20 Laps)- RAY BLISS, Kyle Inman, Brian Bellinger, Ray Smith, Matt Steffenhagen, Adam Leslie, Gordy Hermanson Jr., Shane O’Grady, Greg Mrzywka, Ray Bliss Jr, T.J. Newton, Damian Long, Brandon Machaud, Carl Inman, Alan Bratek, Jason Rumsey, Sarah Johnson, Henry Maier, Tim Downs (DNS).
Lap Leader- Bliss 1-20.
Heat Winners- Leslie, K. Inman, Steffenhagen.
City Slicker’s Bar & Grill 360 Late Model Feature (20 Laps)- JOHN ZIMMERMAN, Tom Baker, Dave DuBois, Austin Kotarski, Tommy Butler, Brian Farnsworth, DJ Krug, Carl Shetler, Tommy Kemp, Brian Kotarski, Zack Carley, Little Carl Shetler.
Lap Leaders- Baker 1-2, B. Kotarski 3-9, DuBois 10, Zimmerman 11-20.
Heat Winner- DuBois, Kemp.
Yasses Trucking & Construction Street Stock Feature (20 Laps)- BYRON DEWITT, Bob Babbitt, Butch Zimmerman, Mike Jackson, Ryan Allen, Jesse Qutermous, Dick Park Jr., Dalton Martin, Jason Babbitt, Jim Claypool, Steve Austin, Bill Button, Kenny Begnouche, Casey Jonathan, Tiffany Rumsey, Tommy Cooper, Roy Amidick.
Lap Leaders- B. Babbitt 1-5, Dewitt 6-20.
Heat Winners- Dewitt, Begnouche.
Rivers Performance Mini Stock Feature (15 Laps)- DANTE MANCUSO, Deanna Shepard, Brad Shepard, Chris Leone, Mike Taddonio, David Bohn, Lee Hicks, Tom Childs, Gary Hopkins, Lauren DuBois, Chris DiLaura, Joe Hulme, Scott Williams, Billy DuBois, James Gayton, Tony Hermanson, Gary Williams, Tony Kulesza (DNS), Doug Green Jr (DNS).
Lap Leaders- D. Shepard 1-11, Mancuso 12-15.
Heat Winners- Mancuso, D. Shepard.
DML Sealing Bandits (12 Laps)- COLE HICKS, Eddie Kowalczyk, Jessica Traxler, Jessica Schleede, Olivia Coniber, Marcus Jackson, Trinity Reynolds, Noah Robbins, Adam Jackson.
Lap Leaders- Hicks 1-6, Kowalczyk 7-8, Hicks 9-12.
Heat Winner- Hicks.