Six division show at Mahoning Valley Speedway this Saturday, July 21; Great point battles in progress
(LEHIGHTON 7-17-18) With the second half of the 2018 season well underway much of the action at Lehighton’s Mahoning Valley Speedway sponsored by Lehighton Ford is focusing on points. This coming Saturday evening, July 21, a six division show of stock car racing at the paved ¼-mile oval will be centering on the close championship battles. The action will consist of Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks. Brian DeFebo, fresh off his third win of the year is maintaining the lead in the headline Modified class but hot on his heels are Bobby Jones, Kyle Strohl, Earl Paules and John Markovic who remain within close reach of the defending champ. With his first win of the season coming in last week’s 50-lap feature, two-time and defending Late Model champion Mike Sweeney has moved ahead of Frankie Althouse in the division standings. But, not to be taken lightly is Jeremy Miller who is just a few points behind the lead pair. Equally in the thick of things are Jacob Kerstetter, Paul Koehler Jr., and Kenny Hein. Cody Geist was the Opening Night Street Stock winner and since then has been consistent with 8 out of 9 top five runs which has enabled him to ride the top spot thus far. Mark Deysher is hovering in his shadows along with Corey Edelman, Stacey Brown, Jared Ahner and Jillian Long who are all within 55 points. Mike Stofflet has been the hot ticket in the Dirt Mods to date, winning his fifth race in eight starts last Saturday. Although he has proven the car to beat there is Ricky Yetter and Billy Lowden Jr., who are keeping him within their sights. The Pro 4 class currently has 2015 champion Cody Kohler as the point leader heading into this week’s race meet but keeping him honest along the way has been his top rival Jake Kibler at a mere 19 markers back. The best battle currently goes to the Hobby Stocks. Tied at the top are Michael Wambold and Ryan Berger. Another 12 behind is Al Arthofer while Peyton Arthofer, Travis Solomon and Trisha Connolly are all close enough that any of them can jump to the top with a good outcome. There is an incentive of an additional $150 to the Hobby Stock winner this Saturday too. Adult grandstand admission is $12, $2 off for students, seniors 65+ and active military. Children under 10 are free. Front gates open at 4 pm, racing begins at 6:00 pm. There is also a $2 discount with a Big Diamond Speedway wristband from the night before. Pit gates open at 11:30 am with early paid practice ($25 per car) running from 12:30 – 3:30. Pits are $25 for members and $35 for non-members. Regular warm-ups begin at 4:30. Driver sign-ins will be from 3:00 to 4:15.
Brian DeFebo reaches 99th career win with another Mahoning Modified win; Mike Sweeney cracks win column for the first time this season; Sage Karam impressive in Dirt Mod and Street Stock debut
(JULY 14, 2018) Brian DeFebo wrapped up a great weekend, winning his second Modified feature in two days. Fresh off a Friday night verdict at Evergreen Raceway, DeFebo was able to continue on his winning ways Saturday evening at Mahoning Valley Speedway. The seventh starting DeFebo would make quick work of Joey Jarowicz in taking the lead on lap 15. From there on he remained smooth as he held off Bobby Jones for his third win of the season and registered his 99th overall career win.“We’re at 99 (wins) now and it’s exciting. I love racing here at Mahoning Valley. For years it was a struggle but these past two years it’s been nothing but fun,” said DeFebo, who continues to maintain the class point lead and seeks a second straight championship.“I can’t thank (crew chief) Gary Slusser enough. He’s the brains behind this deal. He spends countless hours and from that we have good race cars.” At the onset Ron Haring Jr., jumped into the lead but had unceasing pressure coming from Jarowicz. Haring also had to contend with Jones who was giving him much of the same opposition on his outside.For Haring it was full defensive mode as several times Jarowicz was able to stick his nose inside the leader while at the same time doing whatever necessary to fend off Jones. Unfortunately it all came to a head on lap 13 when the No. 85 got tripped up just past the start finish line and went spinning from the lead.On the restart Jarowicz was shown as the new leader over Jones and DeFebo. Just one lap after the race restarted, DeFebo made his race winning move by going to the low side in whizzing to the front. Jarowicz and Jones continued a great dogfight to the end with Jones getting the runner-up spot. John Markovic and Gene Bowers rounded out the top five.“There wasn’t much racing on the outside tonight so we had to adapt and take down low,” said DeFebo. “Once you get into the lead you then have to go into a defensive style of driving. We have good group of drivers down here and they all race you hard and clean.
”Up until last evening, two-time and defending Late Model champion Mike Sweeney had led just a single feature lap and was winless in the process. With a big 50-lap race on tap Sweeney was looking to turn the tides and did just that. After a great lead battle with Frankie Althouse that began on lap 20, the Ford powered No. D11 of Sweeney was able to plant himself at the helm by the halfway mark and from there on never looked back, scoring his first win of 2018 and 55th overall. “First of all I have to thank my crew who work their tails off week in and week out to get this car right,” said Sweeney.“Frankie is has been fast and we’ve been trying to catch him and there is bunch of other guys who are all coming on strong this year so we have to go and do our homework in order to win and finally tonight it paid off.” In actuality Sweeney has been having a good year, finishing each race in the top five which included three runner-ups. It was just the big prize that until now eluded him. That now done he also took control as the new class point leader.The race started out with Kenny Hein showing the way and doing a great job of holding back Althouse and Sweeney. Through the first 19 laps the race was all in his hands then Althouse was able to get by and took Sweeney with. That dual would then run hard amongst themselves with Sweeney winning out by lap 25. For Althouse, who came into the night as the point leader, his night came to an sudden end when he was caught up in an accident six laps from the end. Jeremy Miller, Paul Koehler Jr., Hein and Brandon Turbush would complete the top five.
In the Winner’s Circle for the Sportsman Modified feature it became a very emotionally charged scene as 15-yeat old Avery Arthofer had just notched her first win with the class and was greeted by her entire family with hugs and tears of joy. A previous winner in Hobby Stocks, Arthofer is in her first season with the Sport Mods and in the race was able to fend off track kingpin Earl Paules for the memorable victory and caring on a family legacy of winning at Mahoning Valley.
Corey Edelman ran side-by-side with BJ Wambold over the first half dozen laps off the Street Stock main and then used the next time by to advance into the lead and go on to record his second win of the season.
In the Dirt Mods point leader Mike Stofflet once again was the car to beat. Stofflet got by the continuously improving Vince Fegley Jr., for the lead on lap four and then held off hard charging Billy Lowden Jr., for his fifth win in eight starts.
In both he Street Stock and Dirt Mod features Indy Car star Sage Karam raced and held his own nicely, especially in the Dirt Mod show where he was looking to secure a fourth place spot before a cut tire relegated him to seventh in the final run down.
Al Arthofer needed just one lap to hustle the lead from Tad Snyder and then stayed strong to the finish in picking up his second Hobby Stock win of the year over a close running Ryan Berger.
Modified Feature Finish (35 Laps): 1. Brian DeFebo, 2. Bobby Jones, 3. Joey Jarowicz, 4. John Markovic, 5. Gene Bowers, 6. DJ Wagner, 7. Don Wagner, 8. Kyle Strohl, 9. Earl Paules, 10. Josh Scherer, 11. Kristy Arthofer, 12. Jesse Strohl, 13. Lou Strohl, 14. Nick Bear, 15. Ron Haring Jr.
Late Model Feature Finish (50 Laps): 1. Mike Sweeny, 2. Jeremy Miller, 3. Paul Koehler Jr,, 4. Kenny Hein, 5. Brandon Turbush, 6. Samantha Osborn, 7. Rick Smith, 8. Dylan Osborn, 9. Nick Kerstetter, 10. Jacob Kerstetter, 11. Frankie Althouse, 12. Matt Wentz, 13. Lorin Arthofer
Street Stock Feature Finish (30 Laps) 1. Corey Edelman, 2. Cody Geist, 3. Todd Ahner, 4. Josh Mooney, 5. Jared Ahner, 6. Jon Moser, 7. Jill Long, 8. Mark Deysher, 9. Stacey Brown, 10. Shayne Geist, 11. Rick Reichenbach, 12. Jamie Smith, 13. Randy Schlenker, 14. Matt Schlenker, 15. Matt Kocher, 16. Jeremy Schlenker, 17. Ken Erney III, 18. BJ Wambold, 19. Sage Karam, 20. Devin Schmidt
Dirt Modified Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Mike Stofflet, 2. Billy Lowden Jr., 3. Jeff Parker, 4. Ricky Yetter, 5. Ray Deemer, 6. Vincent Fegley, 7. Sage Karam, 8. Bill Sittler, 9. Colton Perry, 10. Corey Edelman, 11. Paul Martin
Verizon IndyCar Series driver Sage Karam set to compete in Dirt Modified July 14 at Mahoning Valley Speedway
The last time Sage Karam was strapped into a race car he was doing so at lap speeds in excess of 225 mph at the “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” running in the 2018 Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil. At this year’s 102nd edition of the world’s most famous auto race, the 23-year old from Nazareth drove No. 24 WIX Filters/DRR Chevrolet to a 24th place finish. It would mark his fifth start in the 500. The next time he goes racing will be a bit extreme from Indy as he is set to run Ricky Yetter’s No. 5 Dirt Modified at the ¼-mile paved bullring Mahoning Valley Speedway in Lehighton on Saturday evening, July 14. By contrast, Karam will be introduced to a whole new style of speed and driving as there is little comparison between an Indy Car and Dirt Modified. Given his talented background however, it shouldn’t be hard to make the transition for the versatile Karam. He is a National Karting champion with over 36 titles. Having started racing at age 7, he is the only driver to ever win the Indy Racing League Stars of Karting and the World Karting Association’s Triple Crown in the same year. He has a record of 29 National Championships and 9 Consecutive National victories. In 2013 he raced to the Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires championship. Karam has also competed in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Series.
Yetter, who is the 2015-16 Dirt Modified division champion, made the deal with Karam just recently when his son was taking part in a wrestling camp being conducted by Karam’s father, Jody. Sage was also there serving as a coach. “I’m very excited for the opportunity to drive Rick’s car and look forward to racing at Mahoning Valley Speedway. The track is just a short drive from our house,” said Karam. “I’ve seen some cool video of the races there and it’s definitely unique in its size. I’m looking to come out and have a fun evening.” Karam plans to get a day of testing in prior to his July 14 Mahoning debut. Yetter will be tutoring him every step of the way.
“I think this is a great opportunity to have a driver of Sage’s caliber race at Mahoning Valley. He is a great talent that has raced all over the country and beyond. We’re very excited to put him in the seat of our Dirt Modified. To think that one of the stars of the stars of the Indy 500 will be racing with us will make for a special night for everyone,” said Yetter.
That same night Mahoning Valley will present a complete show of Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Sportsman Modifieds and Hobby Stocks plus the Flashback Stocks, vintage stock cars, will be in action.
The Late Models will be running in a special 50-lap/$1200-to-win main.
Adult grandstand admission is $16, $2 off for students, seniors 65+ and active military. Children under 10 are free. Front gates open at 4 pm, racing begins at 6:00 pm.
There is also a $2 discount with a Big Diamond Speedway wristband from the night before.
Kyle Strohl, James Pritchard Jr., Tyler Haydt and Joey Jarowicz are Teel Memorial winners…John Markovic is overall champion
(JUNE 30, 2018) It came as no surprise that a season high 24 Modifieds came out to be part of the 2nd Annual Bill Teel Memorial Modified 4-16s. Teel, a past 3-time champion and car owner champion, made an indelible impression with so many people. It was evident by the wonderful turnout both in the pits and grandstands. The event is unique with four 16-lap features – that being the signature car number run by Teel throughout his career. The quick stints made for some thrilling action and outcomes which is exactly how the night panned out. After all was said and done Kyle Strohl, James Pritchard Jr., Tyler Haydt and Joey Jarowicz took respective checkered flags while John Markovic was declared the overall winner by virtue of his average finishing place across the four mains.
In race number one Roger Coss drew the pole and was steadily maintaining the lead while Strohl stayed close behind. As the field crossed the line to complete lap 12 Strohl felt it was time to make a move and he did so by slipping underneath Coss in turn three. He would then take it home from there and collect his second straight win.“It was key to be aggressive in a short run like this. I just made sure of my tire wear and made my move at the right time. Roger Coss was very tough and he’s such a clean driver to run with,” said Strohl. “To win one of these races means so much to my family and I. Bill (Teel) was a great guy and a great racer.”A redraw of 18 for the next race would see Roger Heffelfinger Jr., and Todd Baer on the front row. Heffelfinger wasted no time in jumping out front while Pritchard and Lou Strohl were hard-hitting on him.Pritchard kept Heffelfinger on his toes over the first half until L. Strohl solidified second spot with six laps to go. He then began laying on all kinds of pressure to Heffelfinger. Looking repeatedly to the inside, Strohl tried to squeeze under Heffelfinger in turn two with two laps remaining. What transpired was contact and a spin that ended either drivers from a possible win.For the restart Pritchard was at the point with Don Wagner on his tail. Not wavering, Pritchard would hold on for just his second Modified win and first since October 2012.It was rough and we really had to work for this,” said Pritchard. “Roger Heffelfinger is one tough competitor and I was fighting him on the outside and then Lou (Strohl) got underneath me and I fell back to third. I felt the way they were racing something was going to happen and it was a case of being in the right place at the right time.” Once again the redraw number was 18 and with that Haydt and K. Strohl would bring the field to the green. This race quickly had a good time feel to it as Teel was a longtime friend, mentor, and business partner plus championship car owner of Haydt.|
Haydt’s ride for the night had come together just days earlier as he was called upon by car owner Robert Wagner to driver the Future Motorsports No. 29. It was only the second time in the past six years that Haydt was racing, making a comeback start in this event last year.Haydt would take the lead and engage in a hard fought battle fending off L. Strohl throughout the distance. “This is awesome. I never, ever wanted to win a race in all the years that we ran than one of these features tonight. Billy meant so much to me and I’m stoked,” an emotional Haydt said. “It was no cakewalk either. Lou Strohl was so tough but he ran me clean. We had struggles to get the car right but it all worked out,” he continued.I’m so happy to give Robert Wagner his first ever win too. I want to thank him for giving me the opportunity to drive his car and putting it in Victory Lane where it belongs.”
In the final 16 Jarowicz shared the front row with Pritchard. The 17-year old made good on the pole start and darted quickly to the front. This young talent has had numerous flashes of glory in his short time in Modifieds and he certainly came of age on route to winning the night’s finale. Behind Jarowicz were Modified kingpins Markovic, Brian DeFebo and Earl Paules. Yet he handled them flawlessly with a solid line of racing. As the checkers waved the Glenn Slocum owned No. 02 had a well-earned career first victory. There have been a couple times that we were close to winning but for whatever reason it just wasn’t to be. It was awesome to get that first win tonight and against guys like John (Markovic), Brian (DeFebo) and Earl (Paules),” said Jarowicz.“With the short distance there’s no holding back. Drawing the pole I knew I just had to run my race and I’d be fine. I didn’t know Bill Teel but heard so much good things about him and this was an honor to get my first win at his memorial.”
Matt Wentz breezed easily to his first ever Late Model win. A seasoned veteran of Mahoning Valley and winner in various classes, Wentz grabbed the lead at the outset. He was then set on cruise control running fast, smooth and steady all 25 caution free laps. Mike Sweeney was second but never able to get close enough to mount a serious challenge.
Jared Ahner has shown that when he’s on he is tough to beat. That was indeed the case in racing to his second Street Stock victory of the season. Ahner took the lead from pole sitter Ken Erney III as the race commenced and then let everyone in his dust as lap after lap he moved further ahead of the pack. The win also came with a bonus as an additional $200 was paid plus an American Racer tire went to the winner.
Mike Stofflet showed lots of muscle in picking up his class leading fourth win seven 2018 starts.Stofflet outdueled Ricky Yetter for the opening lap lead and then put the hammer down to gradually pull away. However, a late race caution would erase his good lead and give Yetter a last chance shot to steal away the lead. Non doing though as Stofflet again showed the upper hand and scored his 35thclass victory
In Pro 4 action Jake Kibler held off point leader Cody Kohler in a solid battle for his second win of the season. June 30, 2018 is a date that will long be remembered by Justin Merkel as he recorded his career first feature win with the Hobby Stocks. And he did it in fine fashion by sweeping the night leading every lap in his heat and likewise over the 20 lap main. 1st Modified Feature Finish (16 Laps): 1. Kyle Strohl, 2. Roger Coss, 3. John Markovic, 4. Bobby Jones, 5. Austin Kochenash, 6. Tyler Haydt, 7. Ron Haring Jr., 8. Nick Baer, 9. Brian DeFebo, 10. Rick Kirkendall, 11. Earl Paules, 12. Don Wagner, 13. Joey Jarowicz, 14. Lou Strohl, 15. Zane Zeiner, 16. James Pritchard Jr., 17. Todd Baer, 18. Roger Heffelfinger Jr., 19 Austin Beers, 20. Terry Markovic
Late Model Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Matt Wentz, 2. Mike Sweeney, 3. Frankie Althouse, 4. Jacob Kerstetter, 5. Paul Kohler Jr., 6. Jeremy Miller, 7. Samantha Osborn, 8. Kenny Hein, 9. Taylor Schmidt
Street Stock Feature Finish (30 Laps) 1. Jared Ahner, 2. Ken Earney111, 3. Stacey Brown, 4. Cody Geist, 5. Mark Deysher, 6. Jon Moser, 7. Randy Schlenker, 8. Jill Long, 9. Josh Mooney, 10. Jamie Smith, 11. Rick Reichenbach, 12. Corey Edelman, 13. Shayne Geist, 14. Matt Schlenker, 15. Devin Schmidt, 16. Matt Kocher, 17. Todd Ahner, 18. BJ Wambold, 19. Eric Kocher, 20. Dennis Buss
Dirt Modified Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Mike Stofflet, 2. Ricky Yetter, 3. Jeff Parker, 4. Billy Lowden Jr., 5.Bill Sittler, 6. Corey Edelman, 7. Dave Chapman, 8. Vincent Fegley, 9. Colton Perry Pro 4 Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1.Jake Kibler, 2. Cody Kohler, 3. Randy Schaffer, 4. Bobby Kibler Jr., 5. Tyler Stangle, 6. Jeremy Guerra, 7. Josh Scherer, 8. Jason Finken, 9. Josh Kuronya, 10. Tucker Muffley, 11. John Bennett
On Friday night’s Big Diamond Speedway, the 3/8-mile dirt oval in Forestville puts on a great show of stock car racing. Saturday’s at the paved ¼-mile oval Mahoning Valley Speedway in Lehighton the same can be said.
Each track can boast their own unique brand of action that always leaves fans coming back for more. Separated by a mere 36 miles, familiar faces can also be seen in both grandstands as numerous buffs like an equal amount both dirt and asphalt racing. Looking upon those prospects Jake Smulley, promoter of Big Diamond and Mahoning Valley’s Jack Carlino have made a commitment to offer spectators a $2-off discount when showing their respective front gate wristbands.
Starting this Friday fans from Big Diamond can attend the next night at Mahoning Valley and take advantage of the $2-off deal. Likewise Saturday’s wrist bands from Mahoning Valley will offer the same discount the following Friday at Big Diamond. Please note that the wristband offer is can only be used on a per-week basis and not carry over an additional week. And, the special offer couldn’t start at a better time as both tracks have big nights planned.
This Friday night at Big Diamond Speedway the 2nd annual Dave Kamp Memorial Night will see plenty of bonus money available to racers in all four divisions.
The Mattera’s Electrical and General Contracting Modified division will compete in a $4000 to win feature. Additionally there will be a $300 to win Dave Kamp Memorial Cash Dash for the night’s heat winners sponsored by Red, White and Blue Auto Sales. In the USS Achey Sportsman division, the winner of the 20-lap feature event will pay a total of $1300 thanks to a $300 bonus courtesy of Pioneer Pole Buildings. A $100 bonus will be given to the halfway leader of the feature sponsored by Ric’s Service Center of Palo Alto. A $150 hard charger bonus sponsored by Ed’s USA Auto Rental will also be available. The Savage 61 Road Runners will race for a total of $608 thanks to a $158 feature winner bonus sponsored by Greg’s Auto Service and Collision. The No Sweat Service Group Street Stock division will race for a payout of $900 to win. Included in that amount is a $400 bonus sponsored by Ken’s Tire. Gates open at 5:30pm with warmups starting at 7:30. Friday’s general admission is $20, kids 10-11 are $10, under 10 free. Senior admission is $18 and as always active Military with ID are free.
Mahoning Valley Speedway is proud to announce that the second running of the Bill Teel Memorial Modified 4-16s will be held on Saturday, June 30. Teel passed away in 2012. He won Modified titles in 1988, 1990 and 2000. He was also the 2011 Modified car owner champion with Tyler Haydt. The Bill Teel Memorial Modified 4-16s will again consist of four 16 lap Modified features paying a minimum $816 to win each plus lap money and contingencies. There will be an overall top finisher who will receive additional money along with a huge trophy. Drivers will draw for heat starting spots to qualify for the first feature. The next three races will be an invert for starting positions 6–20 provided all drivers are on the lead lap at the respective finishes. In-between features cars will be pitted in the staging area.
Also on tap will be Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks plus the ATQMRA TQ Midgets. Kids Big Wheel races take place at intermission.
The winner of the Street Stock feature will earn an additional $200 plus a free American Racer Tire.
On Saturday evening, June 30, Mahoning Valley Speedway will present a tribute to the late #BillTeel. The Bill Teel Memorial Modified 4-16s will be four 16-lap features each paying a minimum $816 to win each plus there will be an overall champion named with the driver who has the best finishing average paying nearly $1000. Contingencies will be handed out too. To many Teel was the Babe Ruth of area short track pavement racing. He was admired by all who knew him from drivers to fans. He made a lasting impression on everyone he met both on and off the track. As a racer he was fierce yet respectable to his counterparts. Fans loved his smooth style of racing and it showed as he amassed a legion of close followers. When he was celebrating a victory it was commonplace to see nearly the entire grandstands empty out to join him in Victory Lane. He was also legendary for his late night race revelries too, no matter if he won or not. Teel passed away in 2012. He won Mahoning Modified titles in 1988, 1990 and 2000. He was also the 2011 Modified car owner champion with driver Tyler Haydt. His driving careen began at Dorney Park Speedway and also included stints at Nazareth Speedway, Flemington Fair Speedway, Evergreen Raceway and selected NASCAR and RoC touring events across the northeast. This will actually be the second running of the Bill Teel Memorial Modified 4-16s. The event is being organized by Dene Smith and the Teel family. Smith is a former crew member of Teel. The 16 is significant in the fact it was Teel’s signature car number and ironically when he won his last feature at Mahoning Valley on July 8, 2000, it would be his 16th. Drivers will draw for heat starting spots to qualify for the first feature. The next three races will be an invert for starting positions 6–20 provided all drivers are on the lead lap at the respective finishes. In-between features cars will be pitted in the staging area which gives fans a great look at teams prepping the cars. Last year’s show was well attended, proof of the impact Teel had in the sport. By the time race night rolled around each of the four features had paid $1116 to win. It was an instant classic. Fitting too where the winners, veterans Don Wagner, Bobby Jones, Todd Baer and John Markovic who scored the respective victories. Each raced and had fond memories of Teel as they came up through the ranks. Wagner also merited the champion title for his best overall finish and took home an additional $1116. With only 16 laps to get things done there was little time to ponder the right moves. Drivers had to act quickly in order to gain positions and none more so than that of the lead. Each race would have that intenseness for the top spot and outcome, reflective of how Teel raced, smart, decisive and to the point. In race one Troy Bollinger had the pole and would lead early on. But there would be an onslaught of competition bearing down on him, Ron Haring Jr., and Wagner especially. On the sixth lap Wagner motored by Haring and two laps later made a swift dash by Bollinger for the lead and eventually the win. In race two Joey Jarowicz was on the pole and primed to get his career first Modified win after coming close several times. He would get the lead but was immediately pressured by Jones and Kris Graver. Jarowicz was not giving in despite cars on either side of him. However, while exhaustedly defending his spot, Jones executed an outside pass while Jarowicz was holding back Graver. There was five laps to go by then and Jones was now the lead defender and held back Jarowicz for the victory. “I really wanted to win one of those features. Billy was a good friend and I miss him every day and I think a lot of people miss him, which was evident by the great turnout. I learned so much of what I do here from him. The most significant thing was how to act. He was a very classy person and he taught you how to behave,” said Jones. For the third feature the redraw put Baer on the pole and once again when the racing commenced things got right down to business in a furious fashion. Baer was in tough company as Brian DeFebo was making a bold effort to drive by him. Baer would not waver as he led the distance and squeaked out a mere .083-margin of victory. “Dene Smith put a lot of work into this event and I felt I wanted to jump on board too. It was a blast and I hope this is just the first of many more Bill Teel Memorial races to come,” offered Baer, who came onboard as a co-sponsor. In the finale it would be the always classy Markovic winning a race in honor of an equally classy guy. Markovic would get the jump at the start over Kevin Graver Jr., who had a slight hiccup when the action commenced. That enabled Markovic to seize the moment and he would be solid through all 16 laps, netting his first win since 2014. “Bill was a great guy, a great competitor and great person all around,” said Markovic. “We love what we do here and it’s a tough sport. There no field fillers anymore, everyone is top of the line. And here at Mahoning Valley all these guys run fair together, it’s always a nice place to come and race,” noted Markovic. Taking the four race best finish average to determine the overall champion, Wagner bested DeFebo and the rest of the field for the added bonus money and trophy. “It’s just an honor. Bill Teel was a great guy who I was lucky to race against quite a bit over the years. I learned a lot from him too. Guys like him are the ones you always admired and I was lucky to have known him,” said Wagner. The Bill Teel Memorial Modified 4-16s will get underway at 6:00 pm with heat qualifying. Also on the card will be the ATQMRA TQ Midgets plus Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks.
Mahoning Valley Speedway cancels Saturday, June 23 racing due to weather: Bill Teel Memorial up next…June 30 Street Stock winner to receive additional $200 + free American Racer tire
For a fifth time this season rain has put a halt to racing at Lehighton’s Mahoning Valley Speedway. The National Weather Service has forecast showers and thunderstorms throughout the day and into the evening leaving little chance of any on track activities at the paved ¼-mile oval. Looking ahead to next Saturday, June 30 the speedway will present the second running of the Bill Teel Memorial Modified 4-16s. The Bill Teel Memorial Modified 4-16s will again consist of four 16 lap Modified features paying a minimum $816 to win each plus lap money and contingencies. There will be an overall top finisher who will receive additional money along with a huge trophy. Also on tap will be Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks plus the ATQMRA TQ Midgets. A rain date of July 21 is in place if need be for the Teel Memorial. Promoter Jack Carlino has also announced that the winner of next week’s Street Stock feature will earn an additional $200 plus a free American Racer Tire. Carlino noted that other such division incentives will be offered as he is grateful for the support by all race teams that have been in attendance while under his first year of as the head of the speedway. Carlino has also announced that the track is available for practice rental on either Friday’s or Sunday. Teams can rent the track for up to four hours at $150 per car (maximum 10 cars).
Bill Teel Memorial Modified 4-16s set for June 30
(LEHIGHTON, PA. 6-11-18) Mahoning Valley Speedway is proud to announce that the second running of the Bill Teel Memorial Modified 4-16s will be held on Saturday, June 30. Teel passed away in 2012. He won Modified titles in 1988, 1990 and 2000. He was also the 2011 Modified car owner champion with Tyler Haydt. During his driving career, that began at Dorney Park Speedway and also included stints at Flemington Fair Speedway, Evergreen Raceway and selected touring events, Teel was one of the most respected drivers both on and off the track. He won his fair share of features and more so made a lasting impression with everyone who met and knew him from his outgoing demeanor. The Bill Teel Memorial Modified 4-16s will again consist of four 16 lap Modified features paying a minimum $816 to win each plus lap money and contingencies. There will be an overall top finisher who will receive additional money along with a huge trophy. Drivers will draw for heat starting spots to qualify for the first feature. The next three races will be an invert for starting positions 6 – 20 provided all drivers are on the lead lap at the respective finishes. In-between features cars will be pitted in the staging area. This will be a non-point race, however there will be “show-up” points towards the regular season standings. The 16 is significant in the fact it was Teel’s signature car number and ironically when he won his last feature on July 8, 2000, it would be his 16th. Last year’s event far and away lived up to all of the pre-race hype as was to be expected. The unique 16-lap feature format was well the supported by racers and fans. With only 16 laps to get things done there would be little time to contemplate the right moves. Drivers had to act quickly in order to get positions and none more so than that of the lead. Each race would had that intenseness for the top spot and outcome. Don Wagner, Bobby Jones, Todd Baer and John Markovic scored the respective victories. Wagner also earned the champion title for his best overall finish across the four features. Every driver walked away well “It was an honor. Bill Teel was a great guy who I was lucky to race against quite a bit over the years. I learned a lot from him too. Guys like him are the ones you always admired and I was lucky to have known him,” said Wagner. “I really wanted to win one of those features,” said Jones. “Billy was a good friend and I miss him every day and I think a lot of people miss him and that was evident by the great turnout. I learned so much of what I do here from him. The most significant thing was how to act. He was a very classy person and he taught you how to behave.”
There will be commemorative tribute t-shirts available for pre-sale. Last year over 300 where purchased. Anyone wishing to order a t-shirt or sponsor a lap can do so by contacting Dene Smith at 610-392-8653. Also on the card that evening will be Mahoning’s Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks plus the ATQMRA TQ Midgets. Race time is 6:00 pm.
A rain date of July 21is in place if need be.
Power run lands Kyle Strohl second Mahoning Modified win; Frankie Althouse lead the way in Late Models; BJ Wambold, Jon Moser, Ricky Yetter and Beau Drobot are winners
(JUNE 15 2018) Soon after Kyle Strohl had a spirited battle with Lou Strohl for the race lead in the headline Modified feature, he then put the race away, powering to a decisive second 2018 victory. Starting fourth, K. Strohl utilized a lap two restart to get by Nick Baer and then zeroed in on L. Strohl. Once there the pair engaged in a torrid lead fight. Side-by-side they ran with an occasional bump or two. With K. Strohl on the outside line, he was slowly creeping ahead by the start of lap eight. Once that circuit was completed he put his nose just upfront. After finally clearing his way he then put his No. 44 into overdrive and was never challenged en route to a ninth career Modified win and 32nd overall. “The car was working so much better tonight then the past few weeks and I can’t say enough thanks to my crew for all the hard work they’ve put in,” said K. Strohl. “I really have to give a shout out to Lou Strohl for racing me so clean. I know it was a little rough at some points and I’m sure it looked pretty heated from the grandstands – I know it was from my seat.” K. Strohl was so strong that by the time he reached the checkers he had stretched his lead over runner-up John Markovic to over 3-seconds. “The season is still young and if we continue to run like this I think we can make a good statement towards the championship,” he surmised. Markovic himself was having an outstanding run. At mid-race he unseated Earl Paules for second spot and like K. Strohl was able to pull away from the pack, however, the race leader had already been checking out, leaving him to settle for a solid second. “We stumbled across a couple little things that really turned this car around the past few weeks and it’s been really beneficial,” said Markovic, who has been very fast of late. “That kid (K. Strohl) is such a good talent and an all-around good kid and I’m glad to see him win. I was trying to run him down but it was obvious it wasn’t going to be enough so I knew it was best to just hold my line and settle for second.” Point leader Brian DeFebo, who turned the fastest lap of the race, was third, almost two seconds behind Markovic. Gene Bowers had another strong outing in taking fourth while Bobby Jones rounded out the top five.
Frankie Althouse parleyed his outside front row starting spot into his second Late Model win of the season. Althouse jumped ahead of Samantha Osborn at the outset and then set sail. Without the hassle of any cautions, Althouse was able to run hard enough to maintain his lead and hold off Mike Sweeney for the win, which was also beneficial to his current point lead. 2016 Street Stock champion Jon Moser was no match for the field on this night. Even though Jared Ahner showed the way early on, Moser had him figured out, taking the lead after just six laps. From there on it was no contest as he cruised to his first win of the year.
Hard charging Corey Edelman came on strong in the waning laps and notched second spot over Cody Geist as the checkers waved.
For the first time in 20 years a Wambold has won a Modified race. BJ Wambold held off Earl Paules to the checkers in the Sportsman Mod event. Wambold started from the pole and was able to fend off Paules as well as Devin Schmidt for the popular win. His grandfather, “The Legend” George Wambold, last won a Modified feature in 1997.
Ricky Yetter was finally able to shake his early season woes as he picked up his first win since returning after a one year hiatus. Yetter did have a little luck come his way. Rookie Vince Fegley Jr., was leading and handily at that. Fegley was on the cusp of scoring an upset win as he confidently raced in the lead and maneuvered around traffic like a seasoned veteran. However, his great run got sidetracked with three laps to go when he suddenly veered out of line and scrapped the back straight wall. Yetter seized that opportunity and over the final lap held off fast approaching Billy Lowden Jr., for the win. Fegley was third.
The Hobby Stocks had a special 40-lap feature that awarded $400 to win but prior to the start an anonymous donor added an additional $100. With the high stakes it became an exciting event, especially for the lead position. Al Arthofer was showing the way but hot on his heels was Beau Drobo. Steadfastly Drobot hounded Arthofer, finally getting the upper advantage with 12 lap to go. Once he prevailed on that task he was smooth and solid en route to his second win in a month’s time.
Modified Feature Finish (35 Laps): 1. Kyle Strohl, 2. John Markovic, 3. Brian DeFebo, 4. Gene Bowers, 5. Bobby Jones, 6. Earl Paules, 7. Nick Baer, 8. Lou Strohl, 9. Jack Ely, 10. Joey Jarowicz, 11. Rick Kirkendall, 12. Ron Haring Jr., 13. Kristy Arthofer, 14. Cody Geist, 15. Corey Edelman
Late Model Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Frankie Althouse, 2. Mike Sweeney, 3. Paul Koehler Jr., 4. Jeremy Miller, 5. Samantha Osborn, 6. Kenny Hein, 7. Matt Wentz, 8. Jacob Kerstetter, 9. Nick Kerstetter, 10. Taylor Schmidt
Street Stock Feature Finish (30 Laps) 1. Jon Moser, 2. Corey Edelman, 3. Cody Geist, 4. Jared Ahner, 5. Mark Deysher, 6. Stacey Brown, 7. Shayne Geist, 8. Jamie Smith, 9. Jillian Long, 10. BJ Wambold, 11. Randy Schlenker, 12. Todd Ahner, 13. Ken Erney III, 14. Rick Reichenbach
Dirt Modified Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Ricky Yetter, 2. Billy Lowden Jr., 3. Vincent Fegley, 4. Mike Stofflet, 5. Jeff Parker, 6. Corey Edelman, 7. Dave Chapman, 8. Bill Sittler, 9. Mary Peck, 10. Colton Perry, 11. Larry Beers
Hobby Stock Feature Finish (40 Laps): 1. Bo Drobot, 2. Al Arthofer, 3. Todd Geist, 4.Trisha Connolly, 5. Michael Wambold, 6. Justin Merkel, 7. Lyndsay Bush, 8. Peyton Arthofer, 9. Ryan Berger, 10. Cody Boehm, 11. Shawn Kistler, 12. Kassidy Altemose, 13. Peter Maier, 14. Travis Solomon, 15. Jacob Boehm, 16. Gunner Zeiner, 17. Tiffany Wambold, 18. Devin Schmidt, DNS: Tad Snyder
Brian DeFebo rolls to 2nd Mahoning Modified win; Jeremy Miller wins controversial Late Model main
(JUNE 9, 2018) Defending Mahoning Valley Speedway Modified champion Brian DeFebo is clearly hitting his stride. For the second time in six races DeFebo raced to victory and in doing so padded his point lead over Bobby Jones. “You just don’t know how long it’s going to take to win another race here. It gets me wound up because I drove for 10 years at this track and every time I hop in the car I have that drive that I want to win,” said DeFebo who is closing in quickly on 100 career victories, needing only three to attain that milestone. “I would love to get to that by the end of June.” The win didn’t come easy. Gene Bowers took the lead from Nick Baer on lap three and once there was demonstrating excellent power. Thanks to a 20 lap stretch of nonstop racing Bowers was able to pull away from the pack, setting a torrid pace in the process. Meanwhile Bear, DeFebo and Earl Paules where all busy vying for the runner-up spot. Much credit goes to Baer who did a laudable job of holding back the seasoned vets. On lap 20 BJ Wambold had a spin and right in front of oncoming Bowers who did a nice headsup job of avoiding him. The caution was out and with it went away the commanding lead. When the field was ready to re-go, DeFebo, who had just taken over second place, was lined up next to Bowers with Baer and Paules right behind. No sooner did the race resume DeFebo was able to race into the lead where he would stay the rest of the distance. “He (Bowers) raced me real clean on that restart and I always try to give him as much room as I can. You give respect where it’s given and you know who you can give it to and Gene is definitely one of those guys,” offered DeFebo. “I can’t thank my mom (Sophie Welsh) enough for giving me the best equipment and the awesome crew, without those guys this car wouldn’t go around the track.” Bowers settled for a very solid second, his best finish to date. He continues to show that the winning combination is in short order. “Brian (DeFebo) is just the class of the field right now. I had a feeling he would be rolling up second to me,” said Bowers. “My guys gave me a great car tonight. It’s not quite what it needed to be and we’ve been struggling some. Today we made a lot of changes and got it better. We’re going to work hard in the shop this week and make sure this doesn’t happen again.”
When it comes to drama in a feature outcome you can’t beat Mahoning Valley and the Late Model show was all that and more. Jerry Miller and Broc Brown had the house on their feet during the final laps. Miller had taken the lead from Brown midway through the 25-lapper. Brown was not about to back down and despite having to hold off Paul Koehler Jr., he remained fixed on the leader. Over the final few tours it became a scorching battle as Miller protected the inside line, leaving Brown to do his bidding from the topside. The action then came to a full head on the final lap. With the checkers in sight Brown pulled even with Miller and as they crossed the stripe it would be a photo finish. After a review of time and scoring it was determined that Brown won the race. That did not bode so well with Miller as he reached out to officials in a protest and race review. As it turned out Brown was found to have an issue with his transponder in terms of proper positioning. He was then placed at the tail end of the lead lap cars and Miller was awarded the verdict.
In the Street Stocks Mark Deysher has shown all kinds of speed this season, running among the leaders almost each week. This time, after inheriting the lead when Jared Ahner crashed out on lap 12, Deysher was able to seal the deal but not before a fast charging Shayne Geist made a last ditch run to the inside heading towards the finish line. Deysher was able to hold him off by less than a half car length for his first 2018 win.
Mike Stofflet, the reigning Dirt Mod champion, is letting is be known that he is still the man to beat. After a sizzling duel with Billy Lowden Jr., Stofflet got the lead with six laps to go and went on to win for the third time in the last four races.
The Pro 4 race was a bit of an odyssey to say the least as caution fever was prevalent. It effected just about everyone in the field with the exception of young Johnny Bennett who was able to secure the lead on lap five and then stay clear of the chaos and claim the win.
In the Hobby Stocks Trisha Connolly made good use of her pole starting spot as she jumped out front from the outset and never looked back, cruising to a solid first win of the year.
Modified Feature Finish (35 Laps): 1. Brian DeFebo, 2. Gene Bowers, 3. Earl Paules, 4. Bobby Jones, 5. Joey Jarowicz, 6. Roger Coss, 7. Kyle Strohl, 8. Lou Strohl, 9. Nick Baer, 10. Terry Markovic, 11. Avery Arthofer, 12. Cody Geist, 13. BJ Wambold, 14. Rick Kirkendall, 15. Kassidy Altemose, 16. Ron Haring Jr., 17. Roger Heffelfinger Jr., 18. John Markovic
Late Model Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Jeremy Miller, 2. Paul Koehler Jr., 3. Franke Althouse, 4. Mike Sweeney, 5. Kenny Hein, 6. Jacob Kerstetter, 7. Rick Smith, 8. Brandon Turbush, 9. Geno Steigerwalt, 10 Broc Brown
Street Stock Feature Finish (30 Laps) 1. Mark Deysher, 2. Shayne Geist, 3. Jon Moser, 4. Jamie Smith, 5. Cody Geist, 6. Ken Erney III, 7. Stacey Brown, 8. Todd Ahner, 9. Jillian Long, 10. BJ Wambold, 11. Lonnie Behler, 12. Jeremy Scheckler, 13. Devin Schmidt, 14. Jared Ahner, 15. Corey Edelman
Dirt Modified Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Mike Stofflet, 2. Billy Lowden Jr., 3. Ray Deemer, 4. Corey Edelman, 5. Rick Yetter, 6. Bill Sittler Jr., 7. Vince Fegley Jr., 8. Colton Perry DNS: Dave Chapman
Pro 4 Feature Finish (18 Laps): 1. Johnny Bennett, 2. Jake Kibler, 3. Bobby Kibler Sr., 4. Randy Schaffer, 5. Jeremy Guerra, 6. Steven McDonough, 7. Bill Rooney, 8. Josh Kuronya, 9. Tyler Stangle, 10. Cody Kohler, 11. Tucker Muffley
Hobby Stock Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Trisha Connolly, 2. Michael Wambold, 3. Tiffany Wambold, 4. Lyndsay Buss, 5. Travis Solomon, 6. Al Arthofer, 7. Ryan Berger, 8. Beau Drobot, 9. Shawn Kistler, 10. Peyton Arthofer, 11. Hunter Iatalese, 12. Justin Merkel, 13. Devin Schmidt, 14. Tyler Nemeth, 15. Peter Maier, 16. Shayne Geist, 17. Tad Snyder, 18. Colton Breiner DNS: Cody Boehm, Jacob Boehm DNQ: Jake Young
Six division show on tap for this Saturday, June 9 at Mahoning Valley Speedway.Recycling event at Farmers Market
Mahoning Valley Speedway presented by Lehighton Ford got the month of June off to a rousing start with the always popular Fan Appreciation Night. Now it’s on to this weekend, June 9, with a six division show of stock car racing around the paved ¼-mile oval. Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks will fill out the card. The Sportsman Modifieds have the night off. Race time is 6:00 pm. Grandstand adult admission is $12. $2 off for students, seniors 65+ and active military. Children under 10 are free. Front gates open at 4 pm Pit gates open at 11:30 am. Early paid practice will be 12:30 – 3:30. Regular warmups start at 4:30. Driver sign-ins will be from 3:00 to 4:15. At intermission Kids Big Wheel races sponsored by Ron Haring and Chrissy Powell Modified No. 85 will take place. Please sign up at kids table located near the main grandstand gate.
On Saturday morning from 9:00 am to 11:00 am and again from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm Responsible Recycling Services will be conducting a FREE recycling drop off event. Computer, printers, CVRs, microwaves, UPS, lead acid batteries, metal items, cables & codes, laptops, phones, cell phones, string Christmas lights and more can be brought in. Coming up on Saturday, June 16 the Hobby Stocks will contest in a special 40-lap/$400-to-win main.
Kyle Strohl beats the veterans for Modified laurels at Mahoning Valley Speedway
(JUNE 2, 2018) Mahoning Valley Speedway presented by Lehighton Ford hosted its annual Fan Appreciation Night to a great crowd and equally great racing as all seven classes provided excellent showmanship.
Thus far during the 2018 the top five in points has been occupied by seasoned veterans led by Brian DeFebo, then Bobby Jones, John Markovic, Earl Paules and Lou Strohl.There is a lot of wins and championships among that iconic group but next in the point’s line is 18-year old Kyle Strohl who has stayed close in their shadows and on Saturday night he showed the old masters why he is one to be reckoned with.Strohl would lead from the outset and then began to author a dominating drive as he was pulling away steadily into the waning stages of the 35-lapper. However, a caution with two to go would allow Austin Kochenash to pull in behind him for the final few tours but Strohl wasn’t about to be denied and rolled to his first win of the year and eighth time in a Modified.“We’ve been struggling the past few weeks to get the right set-up. At intermission today we hit on something and we just put all our effort into it and it all paid off,” said Strohl, who has 31 career overall feature wins, numbers that are worthy of his aforementioned mentors.Thanks to a string of nonstop laps, Strohl used that span to show his hand and was pulling away from the pack on each circuit.“I was unaware of that fact. We were just holding out line and hitting our marks. I just wanted to hold my line and hope for the best,” said Strohl.Behind him the action remained tight at Lou Strohl, Jones and Joey Jarowicz fought tooth and nail. By mid-race Kochenash was also getting in on the battle.With just two laps to go and Strohl looking home free the caution waved for DJ Wagner who backed hard into the wall off turn two and with that went away the huge lead.For the restart Jones was on Strohl’s tail with Kochenash sitting third. On the white flag lap Kochenash slipped by Jones and was then glued to Strohl’s rear bumper but his concentration remained on to the finish and he took the checkered flag by a scant margin.“My heart was beating on the restart because I knew Bobby (Jones) was behind me and you always have to be on your game with him and Austin (Kochenash) too. There’s a lot of great competitors here and they all have their act together. We were behind the eight ball but I think now we’re finally starting to get it right,” said Strohl.
In the Late Model main Jeremy Miller held onto the lead all race long but by no means was it easy. With the likes of Mike Sweeney, Frankie Althouse, Matt Wentz and Broc Brown hovered in a tight pack behind him, the going was tough.By lap 10 Althouse and Brown went into a torrid two-wide battle while each making stabs at Miller. For Brown, he would be able to take control of the runner-up spot by lap 15 and then set his sights on Miller.It was intense racing between them as Miller led and Brown wanted it just as badly. So much so that with five to go Brown had the top spot while racing the high line. During this two-wide dog fight Brown squeezed down on Miller the next time by and could not hold the handle of his mount and spun.Miller then fended off Althouse and on the final lap Sweeney for his first win of the season.
Whenever BJ Wambold is given the pole he has been able to make the best of it. Starting number one in the Street Stock feature he would be able to keep that spot all the way to the finish for this third time winning in the past two seasons in much the same fashion.Cory Edelman was a close second with point leader Cody Geist in third.
Ray Deemer wheeled his No. 25w to a thrilling Dirt Mod win that saw him fight off Mike Stofflet to the checkers by a mere .033-second margin of victory.Deemer took the lead at the drop of the green and was pressured lap after lap by Stofflet. On the final go around Stofflet let it all hang out and throttled to the outside of Deemer coming off turn four but determination won out.
Cody Kohler scored his fourth consecutive Pro 4 win. Taking the lead with an inside pass on lap 10, Kohler then let everyone else battle for the spots behind him as he motored away to an 18th division win.Although he has amassed quite a few wins, never before has he been able to reel off this many in succession. He needs just one more to tie the record of five in a row.
In the Hobby Stocks it was Shawn Kistler becoming the first repeat winner of the year. Taking to the lead from the get-go. Kistler held off a very impressive Peyton Arthofer for the verdict.
Modified Feature Finish (35 Laps): 1. Kyle Strohl, 2. Austin Kochenash, 3. Bobby Jones, 4. Lou Strohl, 5. Joey Jarowicz,6. John Markovic, 7. Brian DeFebo, 8. Earl Paules, 9. Ron Haring Jr., 10. Cody Geist, 11. Kristy Arthofer, 12. Buddy Miller, 13. DJ Wagner, 14. Nick Bear, DNS: Don Wagner
Late Model Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Jeremy Miller, 2. Mike Sweeny, 3. Frankie Althouse, 4. Matt Wentz, 5. Jacob Kerstetter, 6. Samantha Osborn, 7. Geno Steigerwalt , 8. Kenny Hein, 9. Brian Romig Jr., 10. Broc Brown
Street Stock Feature Finish (30 Laps) 1. BJ Wambold, 2. Corey Edelman, 3. Cody Geist, 4. Todd Ahner 5. Jon Moser, 6. Jill Long, 7. Stacey Brown, 8. Shayne Geist, 9. Mark Deysher, 10. Jamie Smith, 11. Jared Ahner, 12. Bobby Kibler Jr., 13. Ken Erney III, 14. Jeremey Scheckler, 15. Cody Boehm Sportsman Modified Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Earl Paules, 2. Austin Beers, 3. Joe King Jr., 4. Avery Arthofer, 5. Richard Lapolt, 6. Kassidy Altemose, 7. BJ Wambold
Dirt Modified Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Ray Deemer, 2. Mike Stofflet, 3. Jeff Parker, 4. Ricky Yetter, 5. Billy Lowden Jr., 6. Mark Levy, 7. Colton Perry, 8. Vincent Fegley, 9. Corey Edelman
Pro 4 Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Cody Kohler, 2. Johnny Bennett, 3. Jake Kibler, 4. Tyler Stangle, 5. Randy Schaffer, 6. Tucker Muffley, 7. Jeremy Guerra, 8. Josh Kuronya, 9. Bobby Kibler Sr.
John Markovic scores close Modified win over Brian DeFebo; Kenny Hein nabs Late Model glory: Ken Erney III picks up first career win in Street Stock 75; Mike Stofflet, Cody Kohler and Beau Drobot also victors
(MAY 26, 2018) Saturday night’s racing at Mahoning Valley Speedway was very reflective to Dorney Park Speedway as a trio of drivers with deep ties to the defunct 1/5-mile track in Allentown graced Victory Lane.
John Markovic edged Brian DeFebo in a thrilling Modified feature, Kenny Hein held off a throng of on-comers in the Late Model main and Ken Erney III scored his career first win in a thrilling 75-lap Street Stock show. Markovic and Hein began their careers at “The Park” while Erney’s dad was one of the more prominent drivers who competed there. Other winners included Mike Stofflet in Dirt Mods, Cody Kohler in the Pro 4s and Beau Drobot with the Hobby Stocks.
The 35-lap Modified event saw pole sitter Ron Haring Jr., take control of the early going while Gene Bowers and Markovic ran side-by-side in his path. Markovic was able to just get by Bowers for second when a caution waved for a minor incident after seven laps. It would be on that restart that the regarded veteran would seize the lead. Bowers, who was very solid, slipped to second by lap 10 and on the ensuing circuit DeFebo worked into third. For Bowers his night was cut short while under close quarters he slide into the turn two wall at lap 14. From that point on Markovic and DeFebo put on a thrilling duel to the finish. Repeatedly DeFebo was trying to make a pass but each time Markovic stayed unyielding of his spot. He would hold on for a half car length win, his first this season and 61st overall. “I love racing against Brian (DeFebo), he’s a class act. We did a little bumping and banging and hopefully that didn’t mess him up. It was a good race,” acknowledged Markovic. “The car was a little tight and I wish it had been a bit freer.” Markovic notched his career first win 38 years ago at Dorney in a Late Model. “Without racing I’d have nothing else to do. I love the sport and I’m glad to be back in Victory Lane here at Mahoning Valley.” With his runner-up register DeFebo was able to keep his point lead in tack. Kyle Strohl drove nicely to third while Bobby Jones and Earl Paules rounded out the top five. “That was fun tonight. I just couldn’t make any moves on the outside though. I tried making magic on the bottom but just couldn’t do it,” bottom lined DeFebo. “I come here every week with the fire within as if I hadn’t won in 10 years. And had it been anyone else but John (Markovic) I would have drove harder underneath. But I just have so much respect for him and his career. I watched and admired him when I was a kid and I wasn’t going to be the one to take him out.”
In the Late Model race Hein would start from the pole and lead the way after the opening lap. However, bearing down heavily where Mike Sweeney and Matt Wentz who ran in tight formation. Also in the front pack included Broc Brown and Frankie Althouse. That group would go lap after lap in what would turn out to be a caution free race. All the while Hein refused to waver as he kept his aim despite the onslaught. At the end Hein, who like Markovic began racing at Dorney Park in the mid-1980s, picked up a stirring win, his first in six seasons. Wentz, Althouse, Sweeney and Brown completed the front five.
The Street Stocks contested in a special 75-lap/$1000-to-win run. Erney would lead the field to the race commencing green and afterwards lead for the first time in a feature race. This is Erney’s sophomore season and prior to this night had neither a top-5 nor top-10 finish. Setting the early pace it was clear to see that those marks where about to change for the better.
Despite immense pressure from Mark Deysher and Todd Ahner while at the same time running two-wide with each other, Erney never flinched. His restarts where timed perfectly and played a key in his maintaining the lead.
In the waning laps a fast charging Josh Mooney zipped by Ahner and Deysher and would make a strong-willed attempt on the final lap to get past but Erney was determined to not let this one slip away as he took the unforgettable first career victory. It was the first time the Erney name was in Victory Lane since Ken Erney Sr., won at Dorney in 1984.
Defending Dirt Mod champ Mike Stofflet roared to his second straight win with a dominating performance. Stofflet unseated teammate Colton Perry for the lead on lap two and afterwards went into cruise control the rest of the distance.
Cody Kohler rolled to his third consecutive Pro 4 win. It took the former class champ eight hard fought laps to get around early leader Bobby Kibler Sr., but once he did it was smooth sailing the rest of the way.
There is nothing quite like a career first win and for Beau Drobot his came with extra special feel to it. Drobot was unchallenged for all 20 laps of the Hobby Stock win and was understandably emotional when standing in Victory Lane as it was the first time winning in s stock car since his dad, Nimmy Drobot, passed away some 10 years ago.
Modified Feature Finish (35 Laps): 1. John Markovic, 2. Brian DeFebo, 3. Kyle Strohl, 4. Bobby Jones, 5. Earl Paules, 6. Joey Jarowicz, 7. Lou Strohl, 8. Avery Arthofer, 9. Ron Haring Jr., 10. Kassidy Altemose, 11. Gene Bowers, 12. Devin Schmidt, 13. Nick Baer
Late Model Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Ken Hein, 2. Matt Wentz, 3. Frankie Althouse, 4. Mike Sweeney, 5. Broc Brown, 6. Jeremy Miller, 7. Paul Koehler Jr., 8. Geno Steigerwalt, 9. Jacob Kerstetter, 10. Samantha Osborn, 11. Nick Kerstetter, 12. Kevin Behler
Street Stock Feature Finish (75 Laps): 1. Ken Erney III, 2. Josh Mooney, 3. Mark Deysher, 4. Lonnie Behler, 5. Todd Ahner, 6. Corey Edelman, 7. Stacey Brown, 8. Eric Kocher, 9. Jillian Long, 10. BJ Wambold, 11. Cody Geist, 12. Shayne Geist, 13. Devin Schmidt, 14. Jamie Smith, 15. Lyndsay Buss, 16. Jeremy Scheckler, 17. Jared Ahner, 18. Jon Moser
Dirt Modified Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Mike Stofflet, 2. Colton Perry, 3. Ricky Yetter, 4. Billy Lowden Jr., 5. Ricky Ross, 6. Corey Edelman, 7. Bill Sitler Jr., 8. Ray Deemer DNS: Vince Fegley Jr.
Pro 4 Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Cody Kohler, 2. Bill Rooney, 3. Bobby Kibler Sr., 4. Johnny Bennett, 5. Jake Kibler, 6. Randy Schaffer, 7. Josh Kuronya DNS: Tyler Stangle DQ: Steven McDonough
Mahoning Valley Speedway extends invite to area Late Models
Late Models at Mahoning Valley Speedway have been a staple for decades. Some of the best asphalt Late Model racers have and still compete at the demanding paved ¼-mile oval in Lehighton. Mike Sweeney, who is the two-time and defending champion has been the leading Northeast asphalt Late Model winner the past three seasons. Four time champion Paul Koehler Jr., is the all-time wins leader in area pavement wins. Frankie Althouse has been carving his own niche right alongside those two. There are others as well like most recent winner and up and comer Broc Brown. The always steady Jeremy Miller, respected veteran Kenny Hein and hot shoe Jacob Kerstetter to name a few of the current stars who race Mahoning Valley.
Track management is proud of their Late Model group but would also like to invite all area/regional/touring asphalt Late Model racers to be part of #MAHONINGNATION action. With a simple weight adjustment, either left side or total, the track will allow Late Models built to different track/series rules to compete.
Race Director Steve Fox is ready to answer any questions that any competitor might have and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Saturday, May 19 at 6:00 pm Mahoning Valley will host a six division show which includes Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Sportsman Modifieds, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks plus the Flashback Stocks will join the card. (Dirt Mods are off). At intermission a Little Tykes Bullring Enduro will be held for the kids. Grandstand adult admission is $12. $2 off for students, seniors 65+ and active military. Children under 10 are free. Front gates open at 4 pm.
Coming up on May 26 will be a 75-lap/$1000-to-win Street Stock feature and the following Saturday, June 2 will be the always anticipated Fan Appreciation Night with a special $8 grandstand admission. Please note that this night begins one hour early at 5:00 pm.
Bobby Jones makes it two in a row after wild outcome in Ward Crozier Sr., Memorial
(MAY 5, 2018) Mahoning Valley Speedway had an evening of racing that the late promoter Ward Crozier Sr., would have been proud of. On a night that paid homage to his legacy, the pits had nearly 100 race cars, the grandstands where buzzing with enthusiastic fans and the racing was action filled across all seven divisions.
It fit perfectly into the style of Crozier and his concept of how racing should be held at his beloved Mahoning Valley Speedway, the paved ¼-mile oval that he brought back to life in 1987. 31 years later and the same formula changed very little. As part of the tribute all features where run as 26-lappers which was reflective of Crozier’s racing days and his signature car number. Bobby Jones of Palmerton got his start in racing thanks to the kind outreaching of Crozier nearly 30 years ago. Fittingly Jones was humbled when he scored a wild Modified victory, his second in a row. Jones’ first ride in a race car was aided when Crozier offered up a driver’s suit. “I said I had to win this tonight because of him (Crozier) I’m still doing this today,” offered Jones. And, the outcome was just as much a surprise to Jones as was everyone in attendance. DJ Wagner was leading and looking unstoppable en route to a career first Modified win. However, with six laps to go light droplets of rain moved in and prompted the caution. The field remained on the track in order to keep the surface in tack. While touring under the yellow, Wagner abruptly exited the track and yielded the lead over to John Markovic. The driver’s where then asked to relay to officials if the pavement was good to go back green as the rain halted and the answer was all thumbs up. When the race resumed Markovic had Lou Strohl on his tail while Jones was third. If the surprise of Wagner exiting wasn’t enough of a blow, no sooner did the first lap get underway the race took another wild turn. In corners three and four Markovic suddenly drifted high and made slight side contact with Strohl who was hustling for the lead. The lane opened up wide enough that Jones dove to the bottom and a thrilling three-wide pass for the lead ensued. “It was a bit weird how everything just fell in place. Johnny (Markovic) went up and got into the 88 (Strohl) and the door opened up and I wasn’t even ready for it,” explained Jones. For the remaining few laps point leader Brian DeFebo leaped into second and hounded Jones to the checkers. “When they asked us to give a thumbs up or down I had mine up, I felt we really never lost the track. I didn’t realize he (Wagner) got off at first. No one ever told us to get off and to just keep rolling,” recalled Jones about the wet condition situation. “I didn’t realize he did it at first. Honestly I think he would have won the race. The track was fine after we restarted.” Earl Paules, Todd Baer and Markovic completed the top five. Jones has been on a roll winning his fourth feature in the last six races dating to the prior season. “Four of the last six races going back to last season. I’ll take that. Right now we got it going on and I’ll ride it out as long as we can,” Jones said after picking up his 39th career win.
Broc Brown blasted by Jacob Kerstetter on lap seven and then cruised dominantly to his first Late Model win of the season in a caution free race that was over in just under five minutes.
Seeing the name Beers as the winner of a Modified race is nothing new as Eric Beers has won time and again. Saturday night the Beers Modified was again gracing Victory Lane only this time it was Eric’s son Austin who was collecting the accolades. The 15-year old Beers drove to his career first Sportsman Modified win and did so over longtime rival of his dad, Earl Paules. The two would run toe-to-toe for the lead until Beers solidified the top spot for good with 10 laps to go and drove flawlessly to the decisive verdict.
Defending Dirt Mod champ Mike Stofflet made it known from the get-go that he was going to be the man to beat. Taking the lead from the outset Stofflet was on a mission as he stayed well ahead of the pack over the distance and notched a solid victory, his first of the year.
The Street Stock main was the 600th such feature and Corey Edelman was able to hold off a very determined Jon Moser in claiming the thrilling win.
Edelman took control of the race on lap 13 but was in heavy company the rest of the way, having to withstand Mark Deysher and eventually Moser. The finish was a squeaker as he nipped Moser by a mere .038-second margin of victory.
Cody Kohler showed plenty of swiftness on his way to a second straight Pro 4 triumph. After going around Bobby Kibler Sr., on lap eight for the lead Kohler was not about to let up and held back Barry Christman Jr., and Jake Kibler for the resounding win.
The Hobby Stock feature was cut short due to an over expected amount of cautions and track cleanup but that didn’t seem deter Al Arthofer who won for the first time. It would be hard pressed to think otherwise that it was not to be his night as Arthofer was very strong in leading every lap.
Modified Feature Finish (26 Laps): 1. Bobby Jones, 2. Brian DeFebo, 3. Earl Paules, 4. Todd Baer, 5. John Markovic, 6. Lou Strohl, 7. Jack Ely, 8. Joey Jarowicz, 9. DJ Wagner, 10. Don Wagner, 11. Ron Haring Jr., 12. Nick Baer, 13. Kristy Arthofer, 14. Kyle Strohl, 15. Gene Bowers, 16. Terry Markovic
Late Model Feature Finish (26 Laps): 1. Broc Brown, 2. Jacob Kerstetter 3. Jeremy Miller, 4. Frankie Althouse, 5. Mike Sweeney, 6. Geno Steigerwalt, 7. Paul Koehler Jr., 8. Matt Wentz, 9. Kenny Hein, 10. Samantha Osborn, 11. Robbie Kutz, 12. Taylor Schmidt
Street Stock Feature Finish (26 Laps): 1. Corey Edelman, 2. Jon Moser, 3. Cody Geist, 4. Jaren Ahner, 5. Shayne Geist, 6. Jamie Smith, 7. Eric Kocher, 8. Jillian Long, 9. Stacey Brown, 10. Lonnie Behler, 11. Mark Deysher, 12. Jeremy Scheckler, 13. BJ Wambold, 14. Ken Erney III, 15, Todd Ahner, 16. Ken Reeder, 17. Joe Stangle
Dirt Modified Feature Finish (26 Laps): 1. Mike Stofflet, 2. Ricky Yetter, 3. Billy Lowden Jr., 4. Bill Sittler Jr., 5. Corey Edelman, 6. Mark Levy, 7. Colton Perry, 8. Vince Fegley Jr., 9. Brian Fuclli
Pro 4 Feature Finish (26 Laps): 1. Cody Kohler, 2. Barry Christman Jr., 3. Jake Kibler, 4. Bobby Kibler Jr., 5. Jeremy Guerra, 6. Steven McDonough, 7. Bryan Muth, 8. Randy Schaffer, 9. Johnny Bennett, 10. Tucker Muffley, 11. Josh Kuronya, 12. Tyler Stangle
Hobby Stock Feature Finish (16 Laps): 1. Al Arthofer, 2. Travis Solomon, 3. Trisha Connolly, 4. Devin Schmidt, 5. Ryan Berger, 6. Lyndsay Buss, 7. Peyton Arthofer, 8. Tad Snyder, 9. Adrian Dorwart, 10. Michael Wambold, 11. Arland Moyer Jr., 12. Justin Merkel, 13. Shawn Kistler, 14. Jacob Boehm, 15. Kassidy Altemose, 16. Kevin Behler, 17. Tiffany Wambold, 18. Hunter Iatalese, 19. Cody Boehm DNS: Taylor Schmidt, DNQ: Colton Breiner
Ward Crozier Sr., Memorial to take place May 5.all track classes to run 26-lap features
Mahoning Valley Speedway presented by Lehighton Ford closed out the month of April the same way it started – with a rainout. Saturday’s racing was cancelled due to late afternoon heavy rain storms that swept across much of the region. Track management actually pulled the plug the day prior after working off of the predicted forecast of rain by the National Weather Service. The main event, a 75-lap/$2500-to-win Modified feature, will be held at a later date. Up next for the paved ¼-mile Lehighton oval will be the Ward Crozier Sr., Memorial on May 5 at 6:00 pm. The night will be a celebration of the legendary promoter who revived the once dormant speedway back in 1987 and has since become one a track that has turn out to be a major player in short track asphalt racing. The race meet takes place one year to the day of Crozier’s passing. On the card will be all seven tracks classes which includes Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Sportsman Modifieds, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks. Family members have done a great job of raising additional funds and contingencies for the night. The Dirt Mods, a personal favorite of Ward, will have an extra payoff for the winner. Each feature winner will be awarded a commemorative trophy. Each feature will run a distance of 26 laps which was the signature car number used by Ward during his driving days. Grandstand admission is $12. $2 off for students, seniors 65+ and active military. Children under 10 are free. Coolers are allowed in grandstand but must be no bigger than 12” X 12”. There will be Kids Big Wheel Races during intermission sponsored by current Street Stock point leader Cody Geist. Pits will open at 11:30 am. Early paid practice ($25 per car) will be from 12:30 to 3:30. Regular warm-ups begin at 4:30. Pit admission is $25 members, $35 non-members. Driver sign-ins take place between 3:00 and 4:15. Heats will begin at 6:00 pm.
Coming up in two weeks, Saturday May 12, will be a Ladies Night. All ladies entering the grandstands will receive a $2-off discount. It will also be Pocono Raceway Night with ticket giveaways for the upcoming NASCAR, ARCA and IndyCar events at the Tricky Triangle.
Bobby Jones holds off Don Wagner for top Modified honors; Paul Koehler Jr., is best in Late Models; Earl Paules notches first win with new Sportsman class
(4-21-18) Bobby Jones could be forming a pattern it seems. Last year when Brian DeFebo won Opening Night Jones came out victorious on week two. Fast forward one year later and the same scenario played out as Jones took the week two laurels yet again.
For the outset of the 35-lap main Don Wagner and Joey Jarowicz shared the front row. Once underway Wagner sprung to the lead with third place starter Jones in tow. Jones was wasting little time in looking to pass Wagner and by lap four he was in motion to do so until a caution negated his effort. On the restart Jones would make good on his foiled attempt as he vaulted by for the lead. Two laps later the second and only other caution waved which afterwards led to a quick paced run. Jones would set that tone as he ran a consistent line while keeping Wagner in check. At the checkers the personable veteran took his APS Powder Coating/Franzosa Trucking No. 1J across the line for his 38 career feature win. Wagner followed with a solid second which made up for a lackluster Opening Night run. Gene Bowers had steady and solid race as he was third by lap seven and stayed right in line with the front pair. DeFebo and Earl Paules rounded out the top five.
Paul Koehler Jr., needed just one week to get back into the swing of winning, something he quite accustomed to. The Kingpin of asphalt Late Model racing won his first race in just his second week back after sitting out all of last season. Koehler had things going his way from early on as he notched his heat. Then when the feature began he would lead the field to the green and continue on at the top spot for the rest of the nonstop 25-lap distance, collecting his 72nd career Late Model victory. And, although the lead was all his, Koehler was in some heavy company the whole while as Opening Night winner Frankie Althouse, Broc Brown and Mike Sweeney were stayed closely his tire tracks. None, however, could progress enough to make a pass as Koehler registered his 53rd Late Model win at Mahoning.
The much awaited debut of the Sportsman Modified finally took to the track with a respectable half-dozen cars on hand made up of a great crop of young talents. However, it would be a grand veteran who would etch his name into the record books as the very first class winner with Earl Paules taking the verdict. Avery Arthofer went into the early lead and was impressive in her Modified debut. A caution on lap eight saw Paules lined up next to her for the restart and it would be then where he seized the lead and go on to the eventual victory. 2017 Hobby Stock champion Austin Beers, who made his Modified debut the previous week with the headline division, was a firm runner-up while Arthofer held on for third.
When Jared Ahner unveiled his brand new Camaro Street Stock during pre-season testing, it turned many heads for its sleek and sharp look. On Saturday night Ahner showed everyone that it not just looker but a very fast racecar as well. Taking the lead away from Eric Kocher on lap six, Ahner was able to fend off a very strong running Mark Deysher the rest of the way and secure his first win of 2018.
Cody Kohler had to withstand a rash of cautions not to mention the hard pressing Jake Kibler in gaining the Pro 4 win. Kohler inherited the led after Josh Kuronya spun from contention on lap two. Afterwards it was yellow fever but none of that nor the persistent Kibler could stop Kohler from his focus on winning.
In the 20-lap Hobby Stock feature it was Devin Schmidt taking the win. Schmidt needed the first five laps before taking the lead from Kevin Behler and once in front there was no stopping him. Schmidt cruised with no trouble to the checkers while a distance back Michael Wambold nipped Travis Solomon for runner-up.
Modified Feature Finish (35 Laps): 1. Bobby Jones, 2. Don Wagner, 3. Gene Bowers, 4. Brian DeFebo, 5. Earl Paules, 6. John Markovic, 7. Lou Strohl, 8. Kyle Strohl, 9. Nick Baer, 10. Jarred Ahner, 11. Joey Jarowicz, 12. DJ Wagner, 13. Kristy Arthofer, 14. Jack Ely, 15. Ron Haring Jr., 16. Terry Markovic
Late Model Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Paul Koehler Jr., 2. Frankie Althouse, 3. Broc Brown, 4. Mike Sweeney, 5. Jeremy Miller, 6. Kenny Hein, 7. Jacob Kerstetter
Street Stock Feature Finish (30 Laps): 1. Jared Ahner, 2. Mark Deysher, 2. Jill Long, 4. Cody Geist, 5. Jon Moser, 6. Stacey Brown, 7. Shayne Geist, 8. Bobby Kibler Jr., 9. Todd Ahner, 10. Jamie Smith, 11. Ken Reeder, 12. Corey Edelman, 13. Ken Erney III, 14. Jeremy Scheckler, 15. Eric Kocher, DNS: BJ Wambold
Pro 4 Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Cody Kohler, 2. Jake Kibler, 3. Bill Rooney, 4. Bobby Kibler Jr., 5. Josh Kuronya, 6. Brian Muth, 7. Tucker Muffley, 8. Jeremy Guerra, 9. Randy Schaffer, 10. Matt Clark, 11. Tyler Stangle
Hobby Stock Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Devin Schmidt, 2. Michael Wambold, 3. Travis Solomon, 4. Tiffany Wambold, 5. Kevin Behler, 6. Trisha Connolly, 7. Al Arthofer, 8. Justin Merkel, 9. Peyton Arthofer, 10. Ryan Berger, 11. Shawn Kistler, 12. Lyndsay Buss, 13. Hunter Iatalese, 14. Cody Boehm, 15. Kassidy Altemose, 16. Tad Snyder, 17. Adrian Dorwart, 18. Jacob Boehm, 19. Beau Drobot, 20. Taylor Schmidt
For Brian DeFebo, Opening Night win was déjà vu; Frankie Althouse, Cody Geist, Mark Levy, Jake Kibler and Shawn Kistler among class winners
(APRIL 14, 2018) A new era of racing was ushered in at Mahoning Valley Speedway on Saturday. Now under the leadership of Jack and Rebecca Carlino, a great Opening Night crowd poured into the track to kick-off the 2018 season.
Defending Modified champion Brian DeFebo got his year off to a great start as well, scoring the Opening Night laurels for a second straight time. And, just as he did a year ago the win came over Austin Kochenash. DeFebo would use a last lap restart to slip below Kyle Strohl and then held back Kochenash, who also advanced on the same restart, to register his 67th career Modified win and 96th overall. “It’s exciting to start this way and a great way to come back and defend our championship,” said DeFebo who is back behind the wheel of the Welsh Motorsports No. 53. With a heads-up start from heat finishes to begin the 35-lap main, Joey Jarowicz and Strohl would bring the field to the race commencing green. From there Jarowicz went right to the lead and was turning solid laps in the process. Strohl was settled in second and every few laps would make a bid at the lead. Each time, though, Jarowicz was able to guard his spot, looking very poised for his overdue first win. With 16 laps in Strohl again went for the lead and this time was able to pull to the inside of Jarowicz. Afterwards a thrilling two-wide battle ensued. Then on the 19th tour the pair came into turn three and Jarowicz got slightly loose. He and Strohl then made incidental contact. Before Jarowicz had a chance to recover his car got completely out of line and skidded into the front straight wall and suffered race ending damage. “That was just circumstances. Joey (Jarowicz) just got the car a little sideways. Kyle had nothing to do with that from where I was sitting,” offered DeFebo, who was riding behind the two when the incident unfolded. Afterwards it was Strohl over DeFebo and with the laps winding it was appearing to finish that way. Unfortunately for Strohl a last lap caution waved for debris and with one last shot DeFebo powered under Strohl and took Kochenash with him. “There was no outside line tonight. Once we had that last restart I had Austin (Kochenash) assisting me. I was then on the 44 (Strohl) and he left me just enough room,” explained DeFebo on his race winning move. “Kyle did a great job but you have to do what you have to do in order to pass here. It’s not at a point stance right now. We’re all here tonight win and everyone wants to win the first one.”
In Late Model action Frankie Althouse made a breathtaking three-wide pass for the lead on lap four and remained in control the rest of the distance in notching the top spot. Two-time and defending class champ Mike Sweeney took control at the outset but it would be short lived as Broc Brown used a lap one restart to overtake him. With Althouse in third, he then drove low two laps later to go underneath Brown while Sweeney was forced to the high outside lane. While much of the huge crowd may have gasped by what could have been a chaotic consequence, the trio of talented wheelmen held their own and settling into the lead was Althouse. From there on it was smooth sailing for Althouse who picked up career win number 24. Brown was quick but had to settle for second while Sweeney came home third.
Being in the right place at the right time aided Cody Geist in winning the Street Stock feature. Corey Edelman was within reach of taking the Street Stock checkers until a late race nudge from Josh Mooney dashed his hopes. When the field was reset Geist, who was riding third, was in charge and over the final few laps had no problem fending back 2017 division titlist Stacey Brown. Opening Night wins are always special but when it came to the Dirt Mod event perhaps no one could have more elated then Mark Levy.
The high-spirited Levy moved into the lead during a lap one caution period after then leader Ricky Yetter had to pit for a flat. When the race resumed Levy showed no signs of relinquishing the point as he motored around the 1/4-mile with perfect accuracy and won over Billy Lasko. It was only the second win for Levy whose last win came exactly five years and a day since then.
Jake Kibler raced to the Pro 4 victory but it was with a heavy heart as the day prior his mother, Pat Hosier, passed away. Kibler started from the pole and early on had a good fight going with Cody Kohler. After Kohler spun while trying for the lead on lap 8, Kibler then let second place play out to everyone else as he steadily held his position the rest of the way. Bill Rooney claimed the runner-up spot.
Shawn Kistler certainly had plenty to celebrate on this night as he finally broke through for his career first feature win, taking top honors in the Hobby Stocks. Kistler passed Lindsay Buss on lap two and from there never looked back en route to the unforgettable verdict.
Alex Greenzweig was best in class with the visiting Micro Stocks.
Modified Feature Finish (35 Laps): 1. Brian DeFefo, 2. Austin Kochenash, 3. Earl Paules, 4. Kyle Strohl, 5. Lou Strohl, 6. Gene Bowers, 7. Nick Baer, 8. John Markovic, 9. DJ Wagner, 10. Ron Haring Jr., 11. Austin Beers, 12. Bobby Jones, 13. Joey Jarowicz, 14. BJ Wambold, 15. Don Wagner, 16. Kassidy Altemose
Late Model Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Frankie Althouse, 2. Broc Brown, 3. Mike Sweeney, 4. Lorin Arthofer II, 5. Jeremy Miller, 6. Jerric Johnson, 7. Paul Koehler Jr., 8. Kenny Hein, 9. Jacob Kerstetter
Street Stock Feature Finish (30 Laps): 1. Cody Geist, 2. Stacey Brown, 3. Bobby Kibler Jr., 4. Jillian Long, 5. Shayne Geist, 6. Todd Ahner, 7. Jamie Smith, 8. Mark Deysher, 9. DJ Wambold, 10. Ken Erney III, 11. Jared Ahner, 12. Ken Reeder, 13. Corey Edelman, 14. Josh Mooney, 15. Joe Steigerwalt, 16. Jeremy Scheckler, 17. Jason Kuhn, 18. Eric Kocher
Dirt Mod Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Mark Levy, 2. Billy Lasko, 3. Jeff Parker, 4. Billy Lowden Jr., 5. Bill Sitler Jr., 6. Corey Edelman, 7. Colton Perry, 8. Ray Deemer, 9. Vince Fegley Jr., 10. Ricky Yetter, 11. Mike Stofflet
Pro 4 Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Jake Kibler, 2. Bill Rooney, 3. Randy Schaffer, 4. Cody Kohler, 5. Tucker Muffley, 6. Jeremy Guerra, 7. Bryan Muth, 8. Matt Clark, 9. Tyler Stangle DNS: Jason Finken, Bobby Kibler Sr., Johnny Bennett, Josh Kuronya
Kids giveaways big part of Mahoning Valley Speedway Opening Night
(APRIL 9) As part of Opening Night festivities this coming Saturday evening, April 14, at Mahoning Valley Speedway presented by Lehighton Ford, the younger set will be treated to some special delights. Karen Bortz, Mahoning Valley Speedway Special Event Coordinator has been busy as always taking care of business with the track’s younger generation. The first 250 children age 12-years and younger to enter the grandstands will receive a plastic Easter egg filled with a coupon for a FREE Kids Meal with the purchase of an adult entrée at Texas Roadhouse, 6268 Hamilton Boulevard, Trexlertown. Texas Roadhouse of Trexlertown has graciously sponsored the Easter egg giveaway, which had originally been slated to take place on April 7 before poor weather pushed back the season opener to this Saturday. There may even be a few “special” prized eggs handed out! Also being given away to a few lucky kids will be brand new bicycles and big wheels. Details will be available upon arrival at the track. A special thanks to Bonnie’s Flower Boutique, Inc., Responsible Recycling Services, Atlas Towing Inc., Don’s Auto Service, Aqua Duck and HB Motorsports, Frontline Graphix, Kromer Plumbing, Heating and Air, IIC/K2 Motorsports and Devin Schmidt Racing for the generous donations of the bikes. There is much anticipation heading into the 2018 lid-lifter as great weather is predicated with temperatures calling for the mid-70s. Pit gates will open at 11:30 am. Early paid practice is from 12:30 to 3:30 at $25 per car. Driver sign-ins for the night’s action will be from 3:00 to 4:15. Regular warmups start at 4:30. Race time is 6:00 pm. Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks will run heats and features. All will draw for starting heat spots. Features will be lined in a heads up start by heat finishes. Also competing will be the Micro Stocks. The Sportsman Modified class will have their debut on April 21. Grandstands open at 4:00 pm. Adult admission is $12. There is $2 off for students, seniors 65+, and active military. Children under 10 are free.
Mahoning Valley Speedway set for season Opener…Lehighton Ford named as presenting sponsor
(April 8, 2018) Mahoning Valley Speedway’s 2018 season Opening Night may be one week later than planned but indications are that it will be well worth the wait. After losing this past weekend’s first race meet to poor weather conditions, the paved ¼-mile oval is in an all-systems-go-mode for Saturday, April 14.To get things going Mahoning Valley Speedway proudly welcomes Lehighton Ford as an official presenting sponsor for the 2018 regular season. Lehighton Ford is located at 54 Blakeslee Boulevard Drive East in Lehighton and is conveniently located just a few miles east of the race track on PA Route 443.Although no racing took place there was still a bevy of ongoing activity as track crews continued to ready the facility, assuring fans and race teams alike that all is in top form when the gates swing open.This coming Saturday’s agenda begins with pit gates opening at 11:30 am. Early paid practice is from 12:30 to 3:30 at $25 per car. Driver sign-ins for the night’s action will be from 3:00 to 4:15. Regular warmups start at 4:30. Race time is 6:00 pm.Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks will run heats and respective features. All will draw for starting heat spots. Features will be lined in a heads up start by heat finishes. Also competing will be the Micro Stocks. The Sportsman Modified class will have their debut on April 21.Thanks to a number of gracious supporters there will be bicycle giveaways for the kids.Grandstands open at 4:00 pm. Adult admission is $12. There is $2 off for students, seniors 65+, and active military. Children under 10 are free. On April 21 the American Three Quarter Midget Racing Association is on the race card for the club’s first race of the year. They will join the regular night’s line-up of Modifieds, Late Models, Sportsman Modifieds, Street Stocks, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks. The Dirt Mods have the evening off The Modifieds will have a 75-lap, $2500-to-win feature set for April 28.
Inclement weather pushes Mahoning Valley Speedway Opener back one week
(APRIL 4, 2018) The much anticipated Saturday, April 7, season opener at Mahoning Valley Speedway will have to wait another week as Mother Nature is being uncooperative with the weekend forecast. Weather projections are calling for temperatures in the 30s and mid 20s as well as the possibility of snow and 90% precipitation. With that said track management will cancel any racing activity for this Saturday.Opening Day will now takes place on Saturday, April 14 at 6:00 pm. The line-up will consist of Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks plus the Micro Stocks are on the docket. All of the aforementioned classes will run a series of heats and features.The Sportsman Modifieds will make their debut on April 21 as per the schedule.There will be early paid practice from 12:30 to 3:30 at $25 per car. Regular warmups start at 4:30. All drivers will draw for heat starting spots. Feature line-ups will be heads-up from heat finishes for the first week only. Afterwards regular handicapping will be in effect.Grandstands open at 4:00 pm. Adult admission is $12. There is $2 off for students, seniors 65+, and active military. Children under 10 are free. On April 21 the American Three Quarter Midget Racing Association joins the Mahoning gang for the organizations first race of the season. The Modifieds will have a 75-lap, $2500-to-win feature on April 28.
March 31: Final Test and Tune was a busy day
Racers of Mahoning Valley Speedway came out in force during a beautiful sun splashed Saturday afternoon for the final Test and Tune. During the day-long action race cars went nonstop in shakedown runs, all in preparation for the much anticipated April 7 season Opener. Fans in attendance saw a great preview of what lies ahead for the 2018 season as car after car looked positively superb in appearance. Each class had excellent representation as well with Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Sportsman Modifieds, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks filling the pits. “If today is an indication of what we have coming for our Opener then we are in for a great season. We are close to selling all our pit spots,” said new track promoter Jack Carlino. “All throughout the day our concession stand was busy, our staff was busy and the track was hopping with cars. There was a lot of excitement in the air and we are very upbeat for things to get rolling.” Carlino even extended the session and extra hour-and-a-half to accommodate everyone. The attention now focuses on Saturday, April 7 for the 2018 lid-lifter. On tap will be all seven regular classes with a 6:00 pm start for heats. There will be early paid practice for those looking to get in one final tweaking from 12:30 to 3:30 at $25 per car. Regular warmups start at 4:30. All drivers will draw for heat starting spots. Feature line-ups will be heads-up from heat finishes for the first week only. Afterwards regular handicapping will be in effect. Grandstands open at 4:00 pm. Adult admission is $12. There is $2 off for students, seniors 65+, and active military. Children under 10 are free. On Saturday, April 14 the Micro Stocks will be added to the card. Sportsman Modifieds will have the week off.
Final Test and Tune takes place this Saturday, March 31. We are adjusting the times due to losing last weekend to weather and with Opening Night a week away.
Pit gates will open at 10:00 am. On track action for practice by 11:00. Practice will continue until 5:00 pm or later if need be in order to accommodate everyone as best we can. All types of race cars are welcomed.Grandstand admission is FREE. Pits: $10 per person and $25 per car and driver. Race director Steve Fox will again be doing all car inspections for Mahoning Valley cars. Drivers please have your gear with you for inspection also.
Tires for all classes will be available on Saturday. If anyone would like to purchase tires prior to Saturday you can do so on either Wednesday or Thursday from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm at the warehouse located at 525 West Church Street, Slatington, Pa. 18080. You can also call Dino Carlino for special requests at 484-569-0124.
Track concession stand will be open Saturday featuring discounted select menu. $1 hotdogs, $2.50 hamburgers and cheeseburgers, $2.50 French fries, $5.00 hoagies. Please note the special discount will also be in effect on March 31 only.
A special thanks to Texas Roadhouse at 6268 Hamilton Blvd. Trexlertown, for the donations of the plastic Easter 🐣 eggs and coupons for kids on Opening Night. The first 250 children 12 years old and younger to enter the grandstands on Opening Night will receive a plastic Easter egg filled with a coupon for FREE KIDS MEAL WITH THE PURCHASE OF AN ADULT ENTREE. There will also be a few prize eggs. Karen Bortz, Kids Special Events Coordinator is looking for sponsors to donate new bicycles for giveaway on Opening Night April 7. Ages Groups: 4 and under, 5 – 8, 9 – 13. The first Kids Big Wheel races will on May 5 and May 12. Kids Power Wheel Enduro is on May 19. On May 26 the popular Banner Contest will be held.
Mahoning Valley cancels Saturday, March 24 Test and Tune due to snow
Heavy snowfall accumulation that blanketed the Lehighton and surrounding area on Wednesday has forced track management to cancel this coming Saturday’s Test and Tune. The track, pits, grandstand and parking areas are not able to hold the activities. Saturday, March 31 from noon to 4:00 pm will be the final Test and Tune day in preparation for the 2018 season opener set for April 7 at 6:00 pm. Promoter Jack Carlino will again be offering a discounted select menu at the Test and Tune which includes $1 hotdogs, $2.50 hamburgers and cheeseburgers, $2.50 French Fries, $5.00 cold cut hoagies. Race director Steve Fox is also encouraging as many teams as possible to take advantage of the test day and use the opportunity to have their cars and gear inspected. Grandstand admission is FREE. Pit admission is $10 per person and $25 per car and driver. All types of race cars are welcomed to partake.
Ward Crozier Sr. Memorial Race Night 5/5/18 - Donation Drive On this night in Ward’s honor, all seven divisions, (Modified, Late Model, Street Stocks, Sport Modified, Dirt Modified, Pro 4 and Hobby Stocks), will run 26 lap features. All feature winners will receive a trophy.
At this time, it is our intent to raise monetary donations to be used in any or all of the following ways.
Increase the Dirt Mod winner’s purse. We’ve chosen this division because they were Wards favorite “Weekend Ride”.
Hard Luck Award. To be issued to the team experiencing the most damage at the end of the nights events and may be awarded to any team in any division. This is something Ward has done in the past.
Lap money. Keep in mind that donations can be given to any position on any individual lap, not necessarily to the leader.
We are asking for monetary donations, however, product and gift certificate donations will be accepted as well. We will be collecting your pledges beginning mid March thru Race day.
For more information or to make a donation, please contact Betty or Barry Christman on Facebook or call 610 261 0478.
Please show your support to the man that made racing possible at M.V.S. for the past 30 years.
Initial Mahoning Valley Sportsman Modified shakedown run showed great potential
During this past weekend’s Test and Tune at Mahoning Valley Speedway there was but a limited number of drivers who, despite brisk and chilly temperatures, came out to shakedown their mounts in preparation for the April 7 season Opening Night at the paved ¼-mile oval. Of those cars the most focus was on a pair of Sportsman Modifieds being driven by multi-time track champion Earl Paules and his stepdaughter Kassidy Altemose. It was significant in the fact this was the first laps being turned by the new division that was introduced during the off-season and it was the first time 14-year Altemose was behind the wheel of a Modified stock car. Her prior stock car experience has been in Jr. Enduro and Hobby Stocks. The division is mirrored after most other area and regional tracks that run the Sportsman Modified which is limited in select rules to a full Modified. The Mahoning Sportsman will utilize a 602 crate motor and run 8 inch American Racer tires on a 10 inch wheel, the same as that of a Street Stock. The class will race on an every other week basis in an emphasis to curtail costs. “I think it’s going to be the go-to division. We wanted to get out early with these two practice days and show the other guys that these cars are a pretty cool division. Our times are going to be right there with the Late Models,” said Paules who had turned laps in the10.5-second range. “It’s going to be really good and the moves you’ll see because they are able to turn so well will lend itself to some exciting passing.” Paules was on a twofold mission. Feel out the new car while also breaking in Altemose. “The same line at Mahoning is the same line no matter what car you’re driving. The power isn’t there like a full Modified but it’s a lot more forgiving and you essentially did have to drive the race car but with the smaller tire on that was actually fun,” explained Paules. “So far we ran over 200 laps on those tires and it didn’t even touch them yet as far as wear is concerned so I really feel there will not be an issue there. You have to remember we’re running a 2600 pound car versus a 3000 pound Street Stock so that’s a lot.” Altemose showed steady improvement throughout the weekend and bit by bit lowered her lap times. The class has been generating plenty of interest from both seasoned drivers as well as up and comers. “I would say to the other experienced drivers is we have to give and take a lot. Just let things unfold – we’re not going too obviously win every week so just let these kids get that opportunity to learn. Kassidy picked up a lot from the first day to the second. I’m certain any kid old enough can run this division,” said Paules. Newly appointed Race Director Steve Fox was also keeping a close eye on the pair. Fox has put detailed work into making the rules level for all competitors. Seeing the final product on track was gratifying from a project that just a came about a few months ago. “There were a lot of questions leading up to the cars getting on track. The performance looked great. We saw a look into the future here this weekend. These Sportsman Modifieds I feel are the future of our sport,” offered Fox. “I think some other people have questioned what direction short track racing is going and I feel it needs to be more affordable and the rules have to be in such a way that people can afford to race every week or every other week in this case. “Putting these cars back into the hands of the driver is playing right into what the crate engines and lower horsepower engines are all about as well as the tire selection. We want people to jump out of a support class and get in this Modified and feel good.” Mahoning Valley will conduct two more Test and Tune days, March 24 and 31 from noon to 4:00 pm.
Mahoning Valley Speedway in conjunction with Five Star Race Car Bodies is proud to announce the Five Star Race Car Bodies 2018 Contingency Award Sponsor Program for the paved quarter-mile’s Late Model racers.
This program has been developed for the continued growth of stock car racing by rewarding individual racers who have helped promote the importance of both stock appearing, template-style late models and other oval track race cars. The lucky Late Model recipient will be awarded a $500 Five Star Race Car Bodies gift certificate at the 2018 Awards Banquet. “I think it’s great to help the Late Model guys out like that,” said Mahoning Valley Speedway two-time and defending champion Mike Sweeney. “We’re not the Modifieds, we are the next tier down but we still have a lot of money invested into our cars and anything that anyone can give always helps. For Five Star to step up like that is just awesome. I would say there is a about 90% of us at Mahoning that run Five Star bodies.” In order to be eligible for the $500 gift certificate drivers must display Five Star decals in a designated location. Cars must compete in stock appearing, template-style body. Competitors must compete in 75% of all scheduled race events. The winner will be by a random draw taking place at the season ending banquet. “It’s just a superb body. I know they’ve been working real hard on some new stuff and they’ve always been at the top of their game when it comes to Late Model bodies,” added Sweeney. “Five Star always has a great stock of parts and they try to get you what you need as quick as they can. There are plenty of dealers across the country so if you don’t deal direct you can work with one of their dealers.” Five Star Race Car Bodies is headquartered in Twin Lakes, Wisconsin. Online at www.FIVESTARBODIES.com. S & D Bodyline of 2501 Cherrywood Lane in Bath is the area distributor for Five Star Race Car Bodies.
Ward Crozier Sr. Memorial set for May 5…All features to run 26 lap distance (LEHIGHTON, PA. 1-31-18) Ward Crozier Sr., passed away on May 5 of last year but make no bones about it he left behind a legacy. It was Ward who perhaps can be singled out as the person most responsible for keeping pavement racing alive and well in eastern Pennsylvania from the late 1980’s to the present time, most notably at Lehighton’s Mahoning Valley Speedway. At the end of the 1986 season Dorney Park Speedway in Allentown closed its doors leaving the many faithful pavement racers of the area without a track. The cars at Dorney, Sportsman and Late Models, were somewhat exclusive to that track. Thanks to the heads-up thinking of Crozier, he stepped in knowing that a track was available to keep alive the racing. In early 1987, Ward and wife Dottie where able to make a deal with land owner Charlie Abrachinsky to reopen Mahoning Valley Speedway, a ¼-mile oval that had been sitting dormant the past 10 years. The weekly races under the Crozier’s reign where considered some of the best years at Mahoning as they built a solid and loyal base – fans that had a true passion for the sport and the drivers they deeply supported. He also introduced new classes such as the Pro 4 and D/A Mods. Gone but never forgotten, the Speedway, with much thanks and effort from the Crozier/Christman families, are proud to announce that the “Ward Crozier Sr., Memorial” will be held on Saturday, May 5, exactly one year to the day of his passing. The format will be distinctive to Ward as each feature that evening will be 26 laps in distance. The 26 was the signature number that Ward ran throughout his career. The family has already begun the process of collecting monies and contingencies that will be disburse across the classes. The Speedway will also be sweeting the pot so racers coming out in support of this very special event will be well compensated. Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Sportsman Modifieds, Dirt Mods and Hobby Stocks will be in action but the Pro 4, the class which was pioneered by Ward, is being strongly considered as well. More details on the “Ward Crozier Sr. Memorial” will be forthcoming.
Mahoning Valley Speedway divisional meetings to be held January 28
Mahoning Valley Speedway has announced that divisional class meetings will be held on Sunday, January 28 at the Mahoning Valley Farmers Market which is located adjacent to the speedway. The meetings will be held for all 2018 classes beginning at 10:00 am and conducted by race director Steve Fox. Each class is slated to be over a 45-minute period and have the following group begin at the top of the hour. Up first will be the Pro 4s followed by the Late Models at 11:00 a.m., Dirt Mods at noon, Hobby Stocks at 1:00 p.m., Street Stocks at 2:00 p.m., Modifieds at 3:00 p.m. and Sportsman Modifieds at 4:00 p.m. All past, present and future drivers are welcome and encouraged to attend. The meetings will be limited to driver and owner only. Pit license and pit spots will be sold during the day.
Sunday will also be the final opportunity to reserve a 2018 pit spot. The Mahoning Grill will be open and serving food.
Mahoning Valley Speedway to be well-represented at Pioneer Pole Buildings Motorsports Racecar and Trade Show Presented by Sunoco and Fueled by Insinger Performance, January 19-21 (LEHIGHTON, PA. 1-8-18) When the popular 2018 edition of the Pioneer Pole Buildings Motorsports Racecar and Trade Show Presented by Sunoco and Fueled by Insinger Performance takes place January 19-21 at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks, Lehighton’s Mahoning Valley Speedway will have a firm presence. First time promoters Jack and Rebecca Carlino will be looking forward to meeting everyone during the weekend racing extravaganza where they will set-up shop at the Mahoning Valley Speedway booth. On display will be the No. 22 Late Model of Frankie Althouse along with the latest track class edition, a Sportsman Modified prepared by Zane Zeiner. Newly appointed Race Director Steve Fox will be on hand throughout the weekend as well to field any questions and concerns from drivers. Also in the show representing the paved ¼-mile oval will be 2017 Octoberfast 200 winner Bobby Jones who will showcase his race winning No. 1J that will be displayed in the APS Powder Coating booth. On Saturday Mike Sweeney, the 2017 Late Model champion, will for a third consecutive time be lauded as the as the top overall Northeast Asphalt Late Model winner. According to the annual compiling of the Top Northeast Winners list by Area Auto Racing News, Sweeney’s 10 feature victories put him at the pinnacle of his respective class this past season. It is a feat that he repeated from 2016 and in 2015 was tied for number one. At the Mahoning booth drivers and team members can take the opportunity to purchase their 2018 pit licenses and also reserve pit spots. There has been no increase in price from last season in either of those items and Carlino is happy to inform that the electric will be back on in the pits for those selected spots where available. The Sunday following the Trade Show, on January 28, there will be meetings taking place for all 2018 track classes which include Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s, Hobby Stocks and Sportsman Modified.
The meetings will be held at the Mahoning Valley Farmers Market which is adjacent to the speedway and conducted by Fox. The meetings will begin at 10:00 am and be held per division on the hour. Any and all drivers who intend to compete at Mahoning are highly encouraged to attend, however, please be advised it is for driver and car owner only.
Steve Fox Named As Mahoning Valley Speedway's Race Director, Dino Oberto Appointed To General Manager Slot
By Area Auto Racing News: STEVE BARRICK
TRENTON, NJ – The purchase of Mahoning Valley Speedway's property and business by local resident Jack Carlino has led to key staffing changes at the top of the personnel list. Carlino now owns property that contains the Speedway and the Mahoning Farmers Market. Effective immediately, Dino Oberto, 59, of Hazleton, Pa., has taken over the general management of the speedway operations and Steve Fox, 60, of Hawley, Pa., and formerly of Hazleton, has been named the track's Race Director. Carlino acquired the speedway business from the Santee family and the property ownership from Charlie Abrashinsky, who had owned the property throughout its rebirth. The late Ward Crozier and his family, local businessman Chuck Pollock, and the late Doug Hoffman all preceded Santee in the operation of Mahoning. Carlino lives just west of MVS in Normal Square, the first crossroads west of the speedway. He has been involved directly with the track since 2012 as a concessionaire. Oberto and Fox have known one another personally for over thirty years. They worked together previously, in the 1990s, at Evergreen Speedway in St. Johns, Pa., both in official capacities. Oberto hired Fox for the Race Director position. “Steve has a vast and diverse knowledge of racing to bring to the position,” Oberto, 59, said. “It helps greatly that he and I worked together at Evergreen Raceway in the past and have kept in touch over the years. Oberto has himself been an integral part of the Mahoning Valley Speedway operations dating back to the Chuck Pollock era. His duties at MVS most recently have included announcing, public relations work, sponsor procurement, program publishing and direct interaction between competitors and management. Oberto will continue to fulfill these responsibilities. Oberto feels that Mahoning Valley Speedway recently has attained a position of prominence in northeastern paved track racing, though some recent events have stunted growth. He intends to restore the prior greatness. “Mahoning Valley Speedway is a good place to race. I think that with some attention to detail and a back-to-basics philosophy, Mahoning best days will lie ahead. “I look at my position at the track as being a voice of reason between the drivers and owners and Jack Carlino. I want to do what I can to make the races entertaining and at the same time, make decisions that will benefit Mahoning Valley Speedway as a business. Yes, it's entertainment, but it is also a business that has to be profitable,” Oberto offered. Several issues have already been addressed. American Racer tires, introduced in 2017 for the first, time, will be the tire of choice once again in 2018. “The reaction to the tires was fifty/fifty,” Oberto said. “Which it was before with the other tires. I think as the year went along, more and more teams got comfortable with and saw the virtues of the American Racer.” Oberto said he has been in negotiations with the American Three Quarter Midget Association (ATQMRA). Oberto said that three ATQMRA dates will be booked for the 2018 season. At Oberto's suggestion, track owner Carlino has reduced the front gate spectator admission price for a regular show from $14 to $12. Mahoning will also feature two Fan Appreciation Nights in 2018. An alliance is being sought, under the direction of Race Director Steve Fox, to align with Pocono Raceway with its three major racing weeks. Walter Smith will return as Mahoning Valley Speedway's official photographer. Oberto views his Mahoning assignment as general manager as a great opportunity. “I have been involved in racing for most of my life, and have spent years at Mahoning. The opportunity to be involved at the decision-making level comes at a great time in my life and in my career in racing. I am committed to doing whatever I can to make the place fun for everybody.” For Oberto, the hiring of Fox for the race directorship post was a case of offering the position to the best possible candidate. “Steve has a vast and diverse knowledge of racing to bring to the position,” Oberto, 59, said. “It helps greatly that he and I worked together at Evergreen Raceway in the past and have kept in touch over the years. When Fox as contacted by General Manager Oberto, he immediately accepted the Race Director position. “I've always been impressed with Dino's worth ethic,” Fox said. “I was glad to accept.” Fox's resume in auto racing is extensive. He has competed for several years in ARCA, principally at Pocono Raceway twice annually in the ARCA events but most notably at Daytona. He intends to race the two Pocono races with ARCA in 2018. “I'm on my own now, along with Tony Aquilino who has been with me from the beginning, with the ARCA program,” Fox said. “I love the big track racing all of my background is in short tracks. I'm really a short track guy.” Fox's full time occupation is the directorship and administration of Stock Car Experience, a long-lived, popular NASCAR Stock Car driving enterprise that trains would-be racers, as well as providing recreational race car driving opportunities for fans. SCE operates exclusively at Pocono Raceway and has for nearly two decades. Fpx was there at the beginning of SCE, which was founded by Jesse Roverana. The firm experienced explosive growth beginning in 2000, leveled off after 2008 but has now experienced a renaissance, due in part to the dissolution of other driving schools such as Skip Barber. Fox is also involved in an unusual, little known automotive pursuit: The Silver State Classic Challenge. Run in Ely, NV, the event is held over a 90 mile stretch of public highway, Nevada Route 318, in the Nevada dessert which is closed to public access during the competition. The concept is to drive as fast as possible for the 90 mile distance. Success is expressed in average speed. Vehicles are sorted by class and are staged at time intervals so there is little side by side racing. Fox has competed in the 100 MPH bracket and hit a high of 155 MPH at one point. The holy grail of the SSCC is attaining the fastest speed on a public road and a place in the Guinness Book Of World Records. The 2018 meet has been scheduled for September 13-16, 2018. Fox believes that Carlino's actual ownership of the speedway will be a catalyst for a change for the better. “Jack has been here for the past several years. He operated the pizza stand and has seen the how the attendance has developed. Our plan is to look closely at the rules, discuss them with drivers in each class. We want to find out what the teams are thinking. We think that the rules packages in place right now are sound, safe and fair, but there's room for improvement in anything. “We recognize that to build, we have to constantly remember that we are first and foremost in the entertainment business. All that we do has to center around that concept,” Fox began. Toward that end, Fox articulated the tenets of what will be his race directorship. “When the green flag is out, what happens on the track is up to the drivers. You'll be surprised at what we will tolerate. Racing is racing. “But when the caution flag comes out and after the checkered flag falls, we will have zero tolerance for any contact on the race track. Under no circumstances will we allow any competitor to use their race car as a weapon. Period,” Fox stated. Fox did not specify what sanctions would be taken against competitors who breech protocol. “We want to establish a 'gentle' way of maintaining order,” Fox expressed. “Suspensions and fines are the last resort.” Maintaining order in the pit area is another area within the Race Director's overview. Fox has set forth unambiguous guidelines for pit area contact. “By definition, the pit space of each team is there space. If trouble develops in any pit area, the driver or team who is inside of another person's pit will be considered the aggressor,” Fox put forth. “Any action of this nature will not be tolerated.” Fox said all competitors will be advised to contact track officials to express their grievances, which, he said, will be addressed fairly and immediately. “Talk to the officials, not to the other driver,” Fox emphasized. “We all know that this is a sport of great passion. And things do happen on the track that arouse that passion. But drivers are encouraged to settle their problems with track officials. Fox also addressed the issue of competitors leaving their race cars while on the track after a crash. “Drivers must stay inside their cars. They should pull the window net down if they're not injured. There is no reason for a driver to be outside of a race car and on the track. It will not be tolerated,” Fox offered. Mahoning's season opener, the first under the Carlino/ Oberto/ Fox leadership, is set for Saturday, April 7. For pre-season practices, on the two Saturdays and Sundays prior to the opener, are also planned.
Mahoning Valley Speedway 2018 Opener set for April 7
(LEHIGHTON, PA. 12-10-17) Mahoning Valley Speedway is excited to announce that Opening Day 2018 is set for Saturday, April 7, which follows four Test and Tune days on March 17-18-24-31. Now under new management led by promoter Jack Carlino, he and his organizational staff have been busy preparing the upcoming season schedule while also working on a host of other new items and promotions. The weekly action will once again consist of Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks. There is a new addition to the line-up as Sport Modifieds will be introduced on a rotating basis with the Dirt Mods and Pro 4s. The Sport Modified rules are being finalized and will be similar to most other area and regional tracks that run the class. Beginning April 7, the season will then run through its final point race on September 22. Each race night will begin at 6:00 pm. The full schedule will be released by the start of the new year. Adult grandstand admission has been discounted to $12 from $14. The annual season ending Octoberfast will take place on October 13 with the main attraction being a 150-lap/$5000-to-win feature for the Modifieds. The Late Models, Street Stocks and Hobby Stocks are also on the slate with special events. With this being a new beginning for Carlino and Company, he will be looking forward to meeting fans and drivers at the upcoming 2018 Pioneer Pole Buildings Motorsports Racecar and Trade Show Presented by Sunoco and Fueled by Insinger Performance, January 19-21 at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks. Following the show there will be a full day of driver/owner meetings for all classes of past, present and future teams at a soon to be announced date. More news and continued updates presented during the coming weeks.