In all forms of sport when the big events are on the line there is a very
good chance that a veteran in this sport will be in contention for the big
win. After going through a winless season until mid August veteran Jan Leaty
showed on Saturday night at the Oswego Speedway that he is back in the hunt
for a feature win every time he races.
After winning the RoC event back on August 14th at Spencer in a
dominating fashion. Saturday night Jan made it look just as easy as he won
the Parts Plus sponsored 100 lap feature by following the rules of the race,
getting a great pit stop, and having an outstanding running racing machine.
Jan who started fourth dropped back to sixth on lap 53 as the
leading pack of cars entered heavy lap traffic. While in heavy lap traffic
an accident took place involving three of the five cars in front of him.
During this yellow flag period several drivers pitted during a closed pit
and when the pits were opened the two drivers in front of Jan passed the 25
mile per hour pace vehicle in the pits. After all of this the field was
brought the red to sort out the running order and Jan found himself in
When the race resumed on lap 57 Jan made quick work of the cars in
front of him as he moved up to the outside groove to take third on lap 62.
Jan then passed Wilbur Hebing for second on lap 68 and one lap later Jan
motored around leader Dave Wollaber exiting turn four to grab the lead he
would never give up.
Hebing challenged for the lead a couple of times and when that
happened turned up the wick and made his lead even bigger. Chasing the top
two across the stripe was Rowan Pennink, Rusty Smith, and TJ Potrzebowski.
“ We had a crappy start in the heat and made the most of that and
then started fourth in the main “ said the $3,500 victor. “ The car was
pretty decent all night but after the pit stop the other guys were just in
my way that is how good the car was. “
Jan spoke about his great crew and the confusion that took place
around the lap 54 pit stop. “ A couple of guys made the mistake of pitting
when they weren’t suppose to pit and a couple of guys made the mistake of
passing the pace vehicle on pit road when we could pit. I just don’t
understand how they can do that kind of stuff and expect it to work. But my
crew they’re the best as I came into the pits fourth and they got me out
first of the cars who pitted and that was the difference. “
“ It’s hard to make that mistake of pitting at the wrong time “
said Jan. “ I don’t know if they don’t have their one way radio hooked up
right or their spotter is not listening to race control. But there is no
excuse not to follow race procedures as they haven’t changed over the years
Jan turned his attention to the pit stop and the new right rear
tire that was put on. “ The car was slowly going away as we had that long
green run at the beginning. At first the car was tight then it went to
neutral and then it went to loose. There is always that consideration to
hang out there and not pit, but I said to the crew during the green that we
would have to pit. We pitted and put the same stuff back on the car with the
same sized tire and the car was mint. “
“ We were missing a little piece earlier in the year “ said Jan
when talking about his early in the season struggles. “ Changing the cam
before the Spencer race was the final piece in the puzzle and now we’re
running like we should be running. You need the whole combination to be
working properly to be successful and when one piece is off or missing;
you’re not going to be up front and winning like we are now. “
Jan finally spoke about the gaggle of lap traffic in front of the
leaders on lap 53 which saw him drop back, but he avoided the wreck that
happened one lap later. “ What I was trying to do was plan out ahead of me
all the time. Other words don’t put yourself in a position where you have no
way out. I was trying to keep lanes open all the time to have a way out just
in case I needed to. That wreck in turn two that a couple of guys in front
of me got into and I didn’t because they didn’t have a way to get out of it
and I did a have way out. “
Wilbur Hebing who ended up second which saw him receive the All –
Star Race birth next week has had a rough year to date. “ All year we’ve
struggled with stuff breaking or missing the setup “ said Wilbur.
To get back on track Wilbur talked to two veteran drivers that got
him back on track. “ During the week I talked with Jan and he helped me with
some stuff. We were fast in practice tonight and after that I went over to
talk to Tony Hirschman and he gave me some tips and they lasted the whole
“ I finally had some breaks go my way, a little luck, and the tires
lasted ( he didn’t pit ). I couldn’t be happier “ summed up Wilbur.
First time on the RoC Series this year Rowan Pennink was on hand to
tune up for this week’s Sunoco RoC. “ We had a couple of small carburetor
problems earlier in the day but we got the figured out “ said Rowan. “ I was
pretty happy with the car as it was good right out of the trailer; we’ll
make a couple of changes to make it faster for next week. “
Qualifying heats for the 27 car field saw heat wins go to Pennink,
Matt Hirschman, and Eric Beers.
STEEL PALACE NOTES: Accomplished asphalt racing veteran Davey
Hamilton drove the Horwith Freightliner number 9 as a teammate to Eric
Beers. Davey in his first time in a Modified had a rough night as he spun
into the infield pit road during the heat race and got tangled up in the lap
54 accident. Todd Geist ran the second Earl Paules entry on this night.
Paules had a terrible evening with numerous carb problems. No driver had a
tougher night than Billy Putney. Putney broke the driveline in hot laps and
in the first lap of the heat was bumped into the back stretch wall doing
considerable damage. In the feature Billy was about to pit during the closed
pit, backed up and stayed on the track gaining 15 positions. Billy then
raced his way into third and was challenging for second when the right front
hub broke ending his long and frustrating evening. Marilyn and Don Toal have
raised $15,643 in lap money for this week’s 59th Sunoco Race of Champions
Modified event. With his seventh place finish Matt Hirschman claimed the
Regular Season Point Title by ten over Rusty Smith.
RACE OF CHAMPIONS DART ASPHALT MODIFIED TOUR
REGULAR SEASON RACE
FINISH; Jan Leaty, Wilbur Hebing, Rowan Pennink, Rusty Smith, TJ
Potrzebowski, Pete Brittain, Matt Hirschman, Erick Rudolph, Daren Scherer,
Tommy Farrell, III, Eric Beers, Jim Storace, Mike Leaty, Dave Wollaber, Mark
Tychoniewicz, Kyle Ebersole, Doug Reaume, Tom Kinsella, Billy Putney, Jeff
Hamman, Chuck Hossfeld, Davey Hamilton, Earl Paules, Rick Kluth, Todd Geist,
Tom Wiest, Ron Smith.
LAP LEADERS; Ru. Smith ( 1 – 10 ) Rudolph ( 11 – 53 ), Ru. Smith ( 54 ),
Wollaber ( 55 – 68 ), J. Leaty ( 69 – 100 )
DART MACHINERY AWARD SET OF $1,500 HEADS; J. Leaty.
GATER RACING NEWS DRIVER BONUS DRAW $500 ( SPENCER ); Ru. Smith.
GATER RACING NEWS DRIVER BONUS DRAW $500 ( OSWEGO ); Pennink.
HOOISER RACING TIRE HARD CHARGER AWARD; Hebing ( 21st to 2nd ).
HOOSIER RACING TIRE HARD LUCK AWARD; Hamman ( 6th to 19th ).
NEXT RoC EVENT; Sunday September 13th – Oswego Speedway – Championship
Series Race #2 – 59th Sunoco Race of Champions – 200 laps - $10,000 to win -
minimum of $15,643 in lap money.
The Race of Champions Dart Asphalt Modified Tour is proudly sponsored by;
Dart Machinery, Hoosier Racing Tire, Sunoco Race Fuels, Gater Racing News,
Total Seal Piston Rings, PBM Performance Products, Afco, Xceldyne
Technologies, Melling Performance, Competition Engineering by Moroso, Erson
Cams, Dynatech, Dura – Bond, CV Products, and LA Sleeve.