Sunday, January 22nd, 2017

Mike Leaty Wins Opener at Spencer Speedway

by Gary M. Spaid

WILLIAMSON, NY…Mother Nature finally allowed Spencer Speedway the opportunity to begin the 60th anniversary year at the speedway with sunny skies. Mike Leaty moved into the 7th all-time winningest Sunoco Modified drivers he picked up the season opener.

“I am so pleased we looked good out there tonight,” stated Leaty.”It’s just a privilege to drive this car.”

The N.Y.S. Super Stocks also began their second season as a series. Chris Vogler picked up the 25-lap victory. In support divisions, wins went to Van Grant in the Super Sixes and Shawn Frarey in the 4-Cylinder Scorpions.

Daryl Lewis Jr. led the field of Sunoco Modifieds down to take the starter’s green flag and quickly jumped out into the lead. Amy Catalano tried the outside line but settled into second.

On lap five, Catalano looped her mount in the fourth turn to bring out the yellow. This moved Tony Hanbury into the runner up position. The restart saw Hanbury drop back with a bad handling machine and Mike Leaty move into challenge Lewis Jr.

As the field went into the second turn on lap seven, Phil Wehrheim and Matt Lees tangled sending them both into the outside wall. The impact with the wall inflicted sever damage to both cars, but both drivers emerged unscathed. Officials dropped the red flag as they needed time to remove both cars from the speedway surface.

The restart saw Lewis Jr. fend off Leaty and remain the leader. Then on lap 14, Leaty ducked low going into the first turn and grabbed the lead. He was followed, through the hole he opened on the inside by Kevin Timmerman, dropping Lewis Jr. back to third.

The yellow flew again on lap 25, when Tommy Catalano and Eddie Hawkins came together in the fourth turn. Both returned to the back of the field.

A final yellow came with just five laps remaining, lap 30, when Tim Lewis Jr. looped out in the second turn.

Leaty held off Timmerman for the win, followed by Lewis Jr., Rusty Smith and Hanbury rounding out the top five.

“I began to feel a high frequency vibration near the end of the race,” commented Leaty. “I am just glad we were able to take this win. We want to win the divisional championship  this year.”

Dave Fetterly and Chris Vogler brought the field of N.Y.S. Super Stocks down to take the green. Fetterly quickly jumped into the lead. On lap seven the yellow flew when Fetterly lost the handle in turn four and spun out. This gave Vogler the lead, with Joey Miller running in second.

The restart saw just one more lap get into the record books before Brianna Ramsey slowed on the back stretch and was unable to clear the racing groove.

Vogler, Miller and last year’s super Stock track champion at Spencer, Mitchell Wright, made up the top three. Vogler was able to pull away from the rest of the field to nearly a 20 car advantage. Wright got by Miller for second on lap 16, following minor contact in the first turn.

Miller started to fall backwards in the field as heat winner Steve Malin moved into third and Jim Steffenhagen Jr, took fourth. With just one lap to go the yellow flew as Zach Willis coasted to a stop in the fourth turn. This set up a one lap dash to the checkers.

Vogler took the win followed by Wright, Steffenhagen Jr., Malin, and Willie Strusz to make up the top five finishers.

“I want to dedicate this win to my mom, who died from breast cancer,” stated Vogler in victory lane. “This was a difficult win as we had to change transmissions after our heat race.”

Shaun Frarey led the 4-Cylinder Scorpions the entire distance as their race ran green-to-checkers.  Both Frarey and Joe Clark pulled off a two car break away from the field to finish first and second. The Montgomery boys, Austin and Travis, finished third and fourth with Beth Dennie coming home in fifth.

The Super Sixes also saw just one car lead the distance. Pole sitter Van Grant took the lead at the drop of the green and never looked back. The yellow flew once in the 20-lap event, lap 17, when Denny Coyle made contact with the foam barrier in the fourth turn. This sent up a three lap dash to the checkers.

Van Grant took the win followed by Brandon Allen, who was able to take second in the closing laps. Tim Faro finished third and Adam VanHall came home in fourth. Barrett Schenk rounded out the top five finishers.

SPENCER SPATTER: Amy Catalano must have been the proud “queen of racing” as four of her sons were on the track at one time or another during the night. Tommy competed in the Sunoco modifieds, Tim raced in the 4-Cylinder Scorpions and her two youngest boys were part of a microd demonstration that took place during intermission….The fans had the opportunity to “meet and greet” the drivers during the intermission on the front stretch….former track announcer, Jim Fremouw, returned behind the microphone as he will be working with Joe Marotta this season.

This coming Friday, June 6th marks one of the biggest weekend of racing at Spencer. The mighty RoC Modifieds return to Spencer for their 75-lap qualifiers.  Also on the race card is the makeup race for the Big 10 Super Stocks, originally scheduled for May 16th. The Super Sixes, Scorpion 4-Cylinders and INEX legend cars round out this special program. Race time starts at 7 p.m. sharp, one half hour earlier than normal.

Spencer Speedway is located just fifteen minutes east of Rochester, NY, along Route 104 in the Town of Williamson. Spencer Speedway is the local “NASCAR Place to Race” for Central New York in 2014. Points earned each week at Spencer are counted into the national NASCAR Whelen All-American Points.

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HEAT 1:  J. Clark, A. Montgomery. T. Montgomery, A. Knoepfler, R. Brown.

HEAT 2:  S. Frarey, T. Alloco, B. Dennie, D. Knapp Jr., Ti. Catalano.

FEATURE (15-laps):   SHAUN FRAREY, Joe Clark, Austin Montgomery, Travis Montgomery, Beth Dennie, Alison Knoepfler, Tom Alloco, Ryan Brown, Donnie Knapp Jr., Timmy Catalano, Carrie Bolton-Brown, Ashley Schoonmaker, Tyler Pratt.



HEAT 1:  A. VanHall, A. Cocilova, B. Allen, B, Mitchell, P. Moose.

HEAT 2:  V, Grant, R. Hilleger, T. Faro, B. Schenk, K. Butler Jr.

FEATURE (20-laps):  VAN GRANT, Brandon Allen, Tim Faro, Adam VanHall, Barrett Schenk, Josh Schoonmaker, Andy Cocilova, Keith Butler Jr., Bill Mitchell, Paul Moose, Denny Coyle, DNS: Ryan Hilleger, Brian Hallett.



HEAT 1:  M. Wright, C. Vogler, J. Steffenhagen Jr., J. Miller, W. Strusz.

HEAT 2:  S. Malin, B. Gleason, D. Fetterly, Z. Willis, D. Lazzaro.

FEATURE (25-laps):  CHRIS VOGLER, Mitchell Wright, Jim Steffenhagen Jr., Steve Malin, Willie Strusz, Billy Gleason, Phil Alhart, Dale Lazzaro, Zach Willis, Joey Miller, Dave Fetterly, Mike Ide, Brianna Ramsey, Jason Dinzler.



HEAT 1:   A. Catalano, T. Hanbury, K. Timmerman, M. Lees, E. Hawkins.

HEAT 2:   D. Lewis Jr., M. Leaty, P. Wehrheim, C. Risdale, R. Knapp.

HEAT 3:   T. Catalano, A. Lewis, R. Smith, T. Lewis Jr., B. Semmler.

FEATURE (35-laps):   MIKE LEATY, Kevin Timmerman, Daryl Lewis Jr., Rusty Smith, Tony Hanbury, Bobby Lippa Jr., Eddie Hawkins, Tommy Catalano, Chris Risdale, Tim Lewis Jr., Andy Lewis,  Billy Semmler, Amy Catalano,  Phil Wehrheim, Matt Lees, Tom Wiest, DNS: Ricky Knapp.





1)      Mark Harvie, 2) Sam Capizzi Sr., 3) Neal Onderdonk, 4) Dean Olschewski


1)      Sam Capizzi Jr. , 2) Sam DeMareo II, 3) Paul Zardarlik Sr., 4) Terry Duerr.


1)      Jacob Lippa, 2) Bob Lynchesky, 3) Matt Galiotti


1)      Dave Stock, 2) Paul Zardarlik Jr.

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