DUNDEE, NY – A little over a month ago, Ron Cartwright Jr from Portageville, NY picked up his second Dutch Hoag National Open victory in the Modifieds. He followed that up by taking a dominant win in the Turkey Bowl Sunday at Black Rock Speedway in the Open/Crate Sportsman division.
Cartwright was wheeling an open engine Sportsman for the Vigneri race team which had its roof replaced by a full blown sprint car wing. All divisions had open tire and body style rules for this event and Cartwright’s team pulled out all the stop signs in putting together the No. 44v for the Black Rock Modified standout.
Everyone in attendance Sunday could see that Cartwright was going to be tough to beat right from the drop of the green flag in hot laps. Cartwright would be the top performing car in hot laps, would walk away with the win in his heat race and would go away from the outside of the second row for Steve Kellogg’s initial green flag.
Karl Comfort would take the lead on the opening circuit and ensure that Cartwright wouldn’t lead every lap enroute to the victory. Comfort’s Crate Sportsman ride was stout in its own right, which would end out the day in the runner-up position. While Cartwright pulled away out front, the battle on the track would be for second.
Shayne Spoonhower had a great run early on in the event, battling Comfort for the second spot. Just past halfway Spoonhower ran into trouble with the battery- ending his day prematurely.
The first thirty laps of the 50-lap feature would go on a single green flag run, which allowed the dominant Cartwright to lap the entire field by the halfway mark on lap 25. Once out front, Cartwright only needed to worry about mechanical failure which would be all that would stand between him and victory. A threat to victory, that nearly came to fruition, late in the race.
With approximately five to ten laps to go, the Cartwright No. 44v started to break up when the car would rotate through the corners. Cartwright would speak to that problem in Victory Lane.
“I think we might have had a fuel pickup problem there at the end, I wasn’t sure we were going to make it,” said Cartwright.
“We’ve been friends with Phil (Vigneri) for a long time. He called me up and asked me if I wanted to race and we jumped at the chance.”
Cartwright’s No. 2b is torn down for the winter already, but after a successful bid at the Parts Peddler auction- the Portageville, NY driver will pilot a brand new Teo chassis for 2016.
Comfort would hold off a hard-charging Stacey Jackson at the end to come home second. Jackson had to settle for third while Ray Bliss and AJ Lloyd rounded out the top five finishers.
Jared Hill and Jim Schuyler brought their Canandaigua legal Pro Street Stock No. 57J for the Turkey Bowl and ended up with smoked turkey and a cool $600 at races end on Sunday afternoon. Controversy was bountiful in the grandstands and pit area regarding the legality of the Schuyler-owned former BRP Late Model racing against the Street Stocks in this ‘Run What You Brung’ event.
Both the 57J and the No. 30 of Adam Depuy were former BRP Late Model chassis and needed to make specific changes to their cars per the request of Black Rock Speedway officials. Those changes were made prior to both team’s arrival on Sunday and were deemed legal to race in the Turkey Bowl once a pre-race inspection took place.
Steve Deinhardt had the car to beat early on, as his No. 73 had some mean ponies under the hood which allowed him to hold the lead for the opening eight laps. A lap 8 restart found Hill and Deinhardt on the front row with Hill making quick work of things to take the lead.
Once out in front, Hill opened the lead up to as much as a full straightaway. But as it was proven all day long, being out in the lead was not necessarily where you wanted to be on Sunday.
With 5 laps to go, Hill started showing smoke out from underneath the No. 57J. White smoke billowed from Hill’s machine and only got worse with each passing lap. An apparent radiator hose failed for the leader of the event, but there was enough left in the tank to get Hill to the checkered flag and the $600 victory.
“I couldn’t see a thing out there the last few laps,” said Hill in front of his fluid-covered ride.
“I was just hoping it would hold on for us, Jim gave me a great opportunity to jump in this car for the Turkey Bowl.”
Deinhardt had to settle for a disappointing second place finish after having a stout piece under the hood of the No. 73. Earl Zimmer finished third, Depuy fourth and Dennis Cummings rounded out the top five.
The 305 Sprint Cars were scheduled for a 20-lap feature event, but this event was shortened to a 10-lap Dash with only two cars making the call for the Turkey Bowl. Jonathan Preston led wire-to-wire to pick up the win over Mike Jackson, who was making his first ever start in a sprint car. Preston, from Romulus, NY, continues to impress early on in his open-wheel career.
The IMCA Modifieds and EMods made an appearance during the Turkey Bowl with open tire and body rules making for an exciting event with winner JJ Courcy turning some extremely fast laps in his No. 369 ride.
The 20-lap feature would see the field complete ten laps before a competition caution would fly at the halfway mark. The field was brought to a stop and inverted for the final ten lap run. Jeff Austin suffered mechanical woes during the inversion and would have to call it a day in the No. 10a.
Brad Smith and Justin Chaddock led the three remaining cars to Steve Kellogg’s green flag but Courcy was too strong- taking the lead in Turn 1 on the restart. Courcy had some American Racer Modified tires strapped onto his IMCA-style Modified and proved to be the winning combination.
“This car was violent fast out here,” said Courcy post-race.
“I would turn into the corners and I swear that it was going to throw me out the passenger window! This event is so much fun because we’ve always talked about wanting to see what these cars could do on soft rubber. I guess now we have our answer.”
Chaddock, Smith and Austin would round out the four car field.
Twenty-three 4 Cylinders filled the pit area and would take the green flag for their 30-lap Rear Wheel Drive/Front Wheel Drive Challenge race. It was an afternoon dominated by the Front Wheel Drives as only less than a handful of the 23-car field was comprised of Rear Wheel Drive cars.
Phil Burns took the early lead in the event before giving away to JJ Kreidler in his infamous No. 79k. Kreidler previously won a 4 Cylinder Challenge race in 2015, but with the open tire rule, appeared to dabble with Street Stock tires for the Turkey Bowl.
Kreidler would take the lead on lap 9 and looked to pull away for the victory, but would come up lame on the backstretch with less than ten laps to go. This would hand the battle for the lead over to Garett Rushlow, Chris Leone and Dalton Martin.
These three drivers would put on an exciting show with incidental contact sending Rushlow spinning to the infield with three laps remaining. Leone would have to hold off the late advances of Martin, but would get the job done to take the victory in the 4 Cylinder Turkey Bowl.
Leone is a regular competitor at the Ransomville Speedway and decided to make the trip to Dundee based on the suggestion from his fellow Ransomville competitors. Martin came home in second, Chris Bonoffski third, Chris Shelly fourth and Eric Rowley filling out the top five finishers.
Mike Jackson and the entire staff from Black Rock Speedway would like to thank all of the fans, teams, crew members and drivers for a great 2015 racing season. Although the on-track action came to a close on Sunday, there is still the season-ending awards banquet yet to be completed.
The 2015 season banquet will be held on Saturday January 30th, 2016 at the Benton Fire Department in Penn Yan, NY. Cocktail hour will begin at 6pm with dinner at 7pm and awards to follow immediately after. Creekside Entertainment will keep the crowd entertained all night with Stu Ovens handling the music. Tickets are $30 and may be obtained by calling (607) 215-5697. All drivers are reminded that they must attend the awards banquet to receive their point fund earnings.
For more information race over to www.blackrockspeedway.com, follow Black Rock Speedway on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BlackRockSpeedway or follow us on Twitter @BlackRockSpeed
Turkey Bowl Official Results November 29th, 2015:
Open/Crate Sportsman (50 Laps): RON CARTWRIGHT JR., Karl Comfort, Stacey Jackson, Ray Bliss, AJ Lloyd, Shannon Pitcher, Brett Buono, Tim Guild, Mike Ward, Doug Smith, Eric Williams, Ray Smith, Shayne Spoonhower, Casey Wagner, John Austin, John Venuto, James Oldfield, Rob Humphreys DNS: Chris Mangiarelli
Street Stocks (30 Laps): JARED HILL, Steve Deinhardt, Earl Zimmer, Adam Depuy, Dennis Cummings, Dan Force, Allison Teed, Kurt Stebbins, Shane Wolfe Jr, Jarod Brown, Kyle Saylor, Teddy Morseman, Jason Doty, Bob Buono, Shawn Boynton, Kane Stebbins DNS: Doug Stack
305 Sprint Cars (10 Laps): JONATHAN PRESTON, Mike Jackson
IMCA/EMods (20 Laps): JJ COURCY, Justin Chaddock, Brad Smith, Jeff Austin
4 Cylinders (30 Laps): CHRIS LEONE, Dalton Martin, Chris Bonoffski, Chris Shelly, Eric Rowley, Dave Dussault, Matt Prescott, Jamie Radley, Garett Rushlow, Chris Woodard, Rick Amidon, Phil Burns, JJ Kreidler, Tim Dunn, Jeremy Trank, Nathen Powers, Howard Guthrie, Rich Wagner, Jerry Herbert, Chuck Cala, Nick Brown, Mike Kramarz, Colby Herzog