July 30th, 2016
TJ Zacharias Survives Wild Chemung Sunoco Modified Feature
by Carol Houssock

  It wasn’t all sloppy. But when the Sunoco Modifieds, which had run a 40-lap race with just one caution two weeks ago, hit the track it quickly got that way. Yellow fever and some lengthy clean-ups bumped up against the track’s curfew and cut the distance of the Sunoco Modified feature in half. TJ Zacharias won the race, along with Tim Gullo (Super Stocks), JP Harbst (4 Cylinders), Kevin Youngs (INEX Legends) and Bryce Bailey (Bandoleros).

  There was no full moon, no black cats running around, and nothing in the water. But a black cloud was certainly hovering over the 18-car Sunoco Modified field for their scheduled 40-lap feature. Qualifying was harmless enough, with heat wins going to Tony Hanbury and TJ Zacharias. The Sharpsteens, Gene and Charlie, started the feature on the front row. Gene led the first lap before Charlie took over. Then the caution flag took over, literally. Jimmy Zacharias turned Hanbury going for second with five laps complete, then Nick Morich and Zack Curren went into the turn three foam blocks. A lap later Connor Sellars, Patti Pruitt, Cody Jackson and Joe Lane had trouble in turn three. Pruitt needed medical attention for a dislocated shoulder. The restart found TJ Potrzebowski, Jody Buckley, Lane and C. Sharpsteen together. Lane spun on the next restart and still only eight laps had been run. The next issue, involving Jackson, Morich and C. Sharpsteen, resulted in a single-file restart with Jesse Kent and TJ Zacharias sharing the front row. It also meant the track’s curfew would shorten the race to 20 laps. Kent led lap 9 before losing the top spot to point leader TJ Zacharias. That’s when things settled down. Hanbury took second from Kent while Curren and J. Zacharias battled it out for third. When lap 20 clicked off Zacharias had his third win of the year over Hanbury, Kent, J. Zacharias and Curren.

  Chad Lane and point leader Nick Robinson brought the Super Stock field to the green for their 25-lap feature. Mike Nichols made a nice move in turn two of the opening lap to take the lead but it was for that lap only. Tim Gullo, who passed Nichols entering turn three for the lead and win in the heat race, made an identical move on the second lap and became the leader at lap two. The only caution came just five laps into the face when Lane spun in turns three and four. Gullo and Nichols started ahead of Robinson and Randy Davenport. Gullo prevailed and his stout #71 steadily put more distance between itself and the 20 of Nichols. The battle in this one was for second, with Robinson trying everything he could to pass but coming up short. This one ended with Gullo in victory lane. Nichols, Robinson, Lane and Ron Underwood rounded out the top five.

  Four cylinder rookie JP Harbst backed up his career-first win with another on Friday night. Ajay Potrzebowski and Zack Bennett won the two heats to set the field but Potrzebowski’s motor let go just after he took the checkered flag in the heat and was unable to start the feature. Ben Perry started from the pole and led the way for the first four laps. Harbst had started fifth and was running second when he set up a nice pass and led at lap five. Perry, Bennett and Greg Moldt had a lively battle going for second, and Bennett held that spot. Two cautions just past the halfway point brought the field together but on each restart Harbst had the others covered. The last caution, for a flat on the Zack Jaynes 01, set up the first green white checkered finish. Bennett spun and Monica Green, who had worked her way up to second, had one final opportunity. Harbst held her off and took the win in his RWD car. Green was the highest of the FWD group, finishing ahead of Moldt, Jordan Mathews and Triston Kline.

  Friday night Kevin Youngs also backed up an earlier win in impressive style. While Max Evans led the field off turn two on the opening lap Youngs got around him and led where the lap was scored. Early on his brother Kyle was running second, with a hard-charging Brandon DeBrakeleer up to third. Jamie Mullen’s spin brought out the first caution when he spun off turn four. Kevin won the battle of the brothers on the restart while Kyle had his hands full holding off DeBrakeleer, who had several shots coming off turn two only to be denied in turns three and four. Just past the halfway point in the 20-lap event DeBrakeleer took over second, leaving Kyle in a battle with Alexandria Smith for third. Evans spun with 16 laps complete and newcomer Abe Romanik spun on the restart. When things got going again Kevin Youngs had a two car length lead over DeBrakeleer, who could get no closer. Youngs got the win over DeBrakeleer, Smith, Matt Evans and Keith Youngs. “The car has been getting better the last couple weeks and ran really good tonight,” he said from victory lane. He and Smith won the heats.

  Seth Zacharias led the Bandolero field off turn two on the opening lap of their 10-lap feature but Teddy Bowen got to the inside for the lead and brought Bryce Bailey along for second. The first of two cautions came with just one lap complete, putting Bowen and Bailey on the front row for the restart. Bowen held his lead while Garrett Zacharias passed Bailey and started reeling in Bowen. When Connor McCarthy spun with two laps to go it brought Zacharias up alongside Bowen for the restart. As the field exited turn two Zacharias was leading. Over those final two laps Seth Zacharias was in third with Bailey chomping at the bit behind him. Up front Garrett Zacharias took the checkered flag for his ninth overall win. Bowen was second while Bailey (top among the Bandits) made a late pass on S. Zacharias for third. Joey Bernatavitz rounded out the top five. Bowen and G. Zacharias won the two heats.

  This week Chemung runs on Saturday, August 6th. Chemung welcomes back the Ferris Mowers Race of Champions Modified Tour for a 75-lap event. The track’s Super Stocks, INEX Legends and Bandoleros will also be in competition. Pits open at 2 PM, grandstand gates open and practice begins at 4. First race starts at 6 PM. Admission is $22 for adults, $20 for seniors 65+, $6 for kids 6-12, and free for kids 5 and under. Fans who bring their adult or senior grandstand ticket stub from July 29th will receive $3 off their admission price.

  Of note:
  · TJ Zacharias, Tim Gullo and JP Harbst earned the Winner Winner Chicken Dinner bonus for free wings at Buffalo Wild Wings in Horseheads, NY.
  · Quick work by a track official to put out a fire in Tony Gullo’s Legend car resulted in applause from the crowd, and it enabled Gullo to repair the damage for the feature.
  · EMT’s and the track clean-up crew were both put into service on several occasions, the former for issues involving Nathan Musso and Patti Pruitt, and the latter for oil on the track on numerous occasions.

  For more information, log on to www.chemungspeedrome.net or “like” us on Facebook. Chemung Speedrome and NASCAR, Asphalt Racing at its Finest!

  Sunoco Modifieds (20 Laps): TJ ZACHARIAS, Tony Hanbury, Jesse Kent, Jimmy Zacharias, Zack Curren, Gene Sharpsteen, Connor Sellars, TJ Potrzebowski, Jody Buckley, Chris Clemens, Zack Knowlden, Kenny Hammond, Cody Jackson, Nick Morich, Tommy Rought, Charlie Sharpsteen, Patti Pruitt, Joe Lane
Heats: Hanbury, TJ Zacharias

  Super Stocks (25 Laps): TIM GULLO, Mike Nichols, Nick Robinson, Chad Lane, Ron Underwood, Randy Davenport
Heat: Gullo

  4 Cylinders (20 Laps): JP HARBST, Monica Green (FWD winner), Greg Moldt, Jordan Mathews, Triston Kline, Kyle Lingerfelt, Zack Bennett, Ben Perry, Jared Sullivan, Ricky Lane, Zack Jaynes, Bob Chilson, James Peck, Jason Peck, Ajay Potrzebowski (DNS)
Heats: Potrzebowski, Bennett

  INEX Legends (20 Laps): KEVIN YOUNGS, Brandon DeBrakeleer, Alexandria Smith, Matt Evans, Kyle Youngs, Pat Judson, Anthony Riforgiato, David French, Tony Gullo, Max Evans, Timothy Bowen, Mike Bollen, Jamie Mullen, Charlie Lohmeyer, Daniel Carter, Abe Romanik, Keith Youngs (DQ – refused tech)
Heats: Smith, Keith Youngs

  Bandoleros (10 Laps): GARRETT ZACHARIAS, Teddy Bowen, Bryce Bailey (Bandit winner), Seth Zacharias, Joey Bernatavitz, Joshua Duke, Connor McCarthy, Griffin Montfort, Dominick Wood, Nathan Musso, Shea Bailey
Heats: Bowen, G. Zacharias

 

                               

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