Gary Rowe - CPA
Dougs dirt diary
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Webmaster's Note
We are discontinuing operations soon. Please listen to the audio from December 26th for more information. Thank you all for your support over the years.
Friday, June 10th 2011
    New on the Audio Page for today:
 
Mike Prentice tells me why he moved to a Crate Sportsman and why a 358 wouldn’t work.
Jordan Bennett told me about the track he hot lapped on and the blown motor they had early on.
Katelyn Kane sums up how her season has gone so far and the frame they trashed in race one.
Bill Knapp talks about his Pro Stock win at Utica Rome and the work they did during the winter.
 
From Jeremiah Fish’s trip to Penn Can:
 
Kevin Albert told J-Fish about his hopes for The Clash and why he felt it important to support it. 
Rob Bellinger does not hit a lot of ROC events and explained to J Fish why he came to Pennsylvania.
Nick Rochinski spoke with J Fish about the new car he had with him for the Clash at the Can.
Chris Stockham has been on a roll of late and talked with J Fish about his recent feature wins.
Jamie Weaknecht has a new job with DIRTcar Northeast and told J Fish what he will be doing. 
 
Another race weekend is upon us and hopefully Mother Nature will smile on us all three days. Now today looks like we will all be just fine, but it is tomorrow and then Sunday that we could see some rain. Hopefully whatever falls is not enough to cancel and keep the crowds away. Keep your fingers crossed.
 
We have a lot on the site today and a lot of it is from our friend J Fish as he really contributed a lot this week. Be sure to say thanks to him when you see him and let him know how much you enjoy having another person’s perspective on the site. Thanks again buddy!
 
It has been a crazy week for me as the combination of school for the kids, dance rehearsals (not for me) and a lot of other things has kept me busy. So to have some extra help this week was nothing short of a god send. Whew, and with all the outside activities conspiring against us we were still able to give you nine new chats today.
 
And I hope you noticed that we uploaded some new pictures on Thursday. How about the Jessica Zemken flip? Hope everything is alright and hopefully it does not hurt their team too much. Wish you well this weekend JZ and everyone else as it is getting intense out there right now.

As for me I will be racing tonight in the Tired Iron Repair Saab at the Brewerton Speedway.  We learned alot last week in the Claude Hutchings built car and we hope to apply that even more today.  So come on out and root me on as I try to do something I have never done before...win a race.  In the heats we have finished second on three occasions and have not finished out of the top four in the four features we have run. 

So it could happen sometime soon if everything works out.  Of course other things could happen too but we don't want to talk about those.  We are coming off of a clean show last week where we finished fourth by a foot as we went for third coming out of the final corner.  So get out to your local racetrack where there are tons of guys just like me looking for that first win and a moment they will never forget.  That is what makes the sport so great! 
 
Now let’s chat more about what is new on the Audio Page for today. I begin with some of my weekend chats. Mike Prentice tells me why he moved to a Crate Sportsman and why a 358 wouldn’t work so well for someone based in Central New York. He compares the experience to the Modified, why he hopes the racing cleans up a little and why lifting at the right time is not that hard to do. 
 
Jordan Bennett told me about the track he hot lapped on at Fulton on Saturday night and the blown motor they started the year with. He also remembered when he ran of gas while doing well, how he is adjusting to being a dad and how his youngster brightens his day. 
 
Katelyn Kane sums up how her season has gone so far and remembered the frame they trashed in race one. She told me how being at the back of the pack hurt, how badly damaged the car was and when we will see it back on the track again. 
 
Bill Knapp talks about his Pro Stock win at Utica Rome this past Sunday and the work they did during the winter. He described what they did to get the car to handle better, why he was not optimistic coming into the night and where he may add a race this weekend. 
 
Kevin Albert told J-Fish about his hopes for The Clash and why he felt it important to support it. He also summed up how he has been doing weekly at Big Diamond & Grandview, described some of the problems he has been dealing with and why he is not letting it get him down. 
 
Rob Bellinger does not usually hit a lot of ROC events and explained to J Fish why he came to Pennsylvania on Tuesday night He also talked about getting a new sponsor on the side of his Modified, offered his initial take on Penn Can and runs down where we will see him next. 
 
Nick Rochinski spoke with J Fish about the new car he had with him for the Clash at the Can. He talked about some of the bad luck he has had this year, how tough it is to start at the back and thought back on his past at Penn Can. 
 
Chris Stockham has been on a roll of late and talked with J Fish about his recent feature wins. He remembered the battle he was in out front at Penn Can’s first mid week show last year, how confident he was coming into Tuesday’s event and spoke about a real bad wreck he had a few weeks ago. 
 
Jamie Weaknecht has a new job with DIRTcar Northeast and told J Fish what he will be doing. He spoke about how the opportunity came about, what else he does that relates to racing and how Club Wago helped open doors for him. 

 
Thursday, June 9th 2011
    New on the Audio Page from Jeremiah Fish at Penn Can Tuesday night:
 
Brett Deyo promoted the race and talked about the person he was trying to emulate with the show.
Jimmy Horton spoke with J Fish about his recent slump, his home tracks and returning to basics. 
Alan Rudalavage talked about how great it was to have a big money show at his home track.
Danny Tyler offered his thoughts on the Clash at the Can and recapped his 2011 season so far.
Billy Decker tells J Fish about his pass for the lead as he won the $8,000 Clash at the Can.
Danny Tyler led a lot of laps at Penn Can and spoke with J Fish about his second place finish. 
Jimmy Phelps came home with the third place finish and told Jeremiah Fish about his race.
 
Other new interviews:
 
Josh Weller spoke with J Fish about his history at Williams Grove and what a win there means. 
Robbie Stillwagon told J Fish how his season has been going running his Sprint with the URC.
Rob Humphries would start a race from the pole and talked about what makes that good & bad. 
Jason Occhino gave me his initial thoughts on the Brewerton Speedway and his hot lap session.
 
Well as you can see today we are highlighting a lot of interviews done by our good friend Jeremiah Fish. All but two of the chats on the site today were done by him and I am truly grateful. Great job buddy!
 
Of course I have said publically on many occasions that I have wanted to put more voices on this site than just me and with J Fish helping out we are doing that very thing.  We have also had other folks on here at times as well and I hope to add more. I see a lot of people out there with digital recorders, so get ahold of me and let’s share your voice and your take on racing with the world.
 
I was a little under the weather yesterday as a stomach thing kept me sidelined for most of the day. But a good nap at dinnertime brought me back and got me motivated to get the work done that I needed to do. When you do a site by yourself content wise, the work needs to be done and that is that!
 
Gonna get in the studio today to get some more interviews done to join the nine that are still sitting in the can awaiting their release. Plus I have an article in the Syracuse Post Standard today that highlights the four types of Sprint Cars that we will see racing this weekend in Central New York. 
 
Now let’s chat more about the new stuff on the Audio Page today. I begin with nine interviews from a good friend of the website. Brett Deyo promoted the Clash at the Can and talked about the person he was trying to emulate with the show. He talked about how the Summer Nationals helped put Ransomville on the map, why he likes to do events at Penn Can and how a big sponsor helped make it happen. 
 
Jimmy Horton spoke with J Fish about his recent slump, his home tracks and returning to basics. He talked about the tight racing at his weekend homes, why he has to leave his New Egypt notes back in New Jersey and highlighted the special shows he has on his schedule. 
 
Alan Rudalavage talked about how great it was to have a big money show at his home track. He remembered how he lost the lead late in the event last year, described the preparation he did for this race and also spoke about his Saturday home down in Woodhull. 
 
Danny Tyler offered his thoughts on the Clash at the Can and recapped his 2011 season so far. He told J Fish about losing a motor last weekend, how it affected him in the points and described what he thought would be the key for a win a Penn Can. 
 
Billy Decker tells J Fish about his pass for the lead as he won the $8,000 Clash at the Can at Penn Can Speedway. He spoke about looking for a good lane to make the move, why he values a good racecar over a good draw and described the small block that got him to victory lane. 
 
Danny Tyler led a lot of laps at Penn Can and spoke with J Fish about his second place finish. He talked about racing against the big boys, how he tried to pass Decker on a late restart and how happy he was with the end result. 
 
Jimmy Phelps came home with the third place finish at Penn Can and told Jeremiah Fish about his race. He talked about a carburetor issue he had early on, explained how close he came to pulling it into the pits and what happened late to make his car better. 
 
Josh Weller spoke with J Fish about his history at Williams Grove and what a win there means. He also told himhow his season has been going so far, remembered a big wreck he was in a while back and his hopes to do well with a big field of 360’s on hand. 
 
Robbie Stillwagon told J Fish how his season has been going running his Sprint Car with the URC. He talked about some of the difficulties he has had in heat races, how much better he has done in the A-Mains and his hopes to run more 410 stuff later this season. 
 
Rob Humphries would start a race from the pole at Brewerton in a few hours and talked about what makes that good & bad. He told me how he has been doing getting around the 1/3 mile track, why running a heat before the rained out feature could help and why he still feels he has room to improve. 
 
Jason Occhino gave me his initial thoughts on the Brewerton Speedway and his hot lap session. He talked about which end of the track he was better at, who gave him some advice on how to get around the tricky track and what he learned in his first race. 

 
Wednesday, June 8th 2011
    New on the Audio Page for today:
 
Lance Dewease talks about his Clinton County win and looks ahead to Fonda & Utica Rome. 
Pete Bicknell recapped his win at Ransomville and his tough night at his home track Merrittville. 
Danny Varin walked me through his Modified win at Fonda and gets ready to race today.
Dave Wickham made the trip to Williams Grove and told J Fish about his past at the speedway. 
Mark Alnutt explained why he moved to Sportsman and how much he is enjoying the racecar. 
Sean Sommers is just getting started in a Novice Sportsman and described his races so far. 
Joe Garafalo tells me why he is not racing for points this year and why that can be a positive. 
 
Well things didn’t go as I had planned on Tuesday but thanks to our good buddy Jeremiah Fish, you will still get audio and pictures from the Clash at the Can from yesterday. It was a classic case of life getting in the way of racing for me so I had about a half of dozen reasons to stay home and only one to go. So I stayed home.
 
But it was not like I was sitting around, I recorded several new chats in the home studio and put three of those up today with another four I had saved from the weekend. And be sure to stop by tomorrow for stuff from Penn Can as we will be airing a lot of J-Fish’s work from last night.
 
And don’t forget that the All Stars are at Fonda tonight and the Modifieds will be joining them. It is sure to be a great show so get your butts on out there to see this one. If you miss it, they are also at Williams Grove, Lincoln and Utica Rome this weekend. So I hope you get a chance to see this touring series.
 
Now let’s chat more about what is new for today on the Audio Page. I begin with a man who will be in action later tonight. Lance Dewease talks about his Clinton County win and looks ahead to Fonda & Utica Rome. He told me how good it felt to get his first trip to victory lane of the season, why he is selling the car that he won with and describes the new car he’ll run tonight at Fonda. 
 
Pete Bicknell recapped his win at Ransomville and his tough night at his home track Merrittville. He talked about the back & forth battle he was a part of on Friday, how a fast track made it difficult to get through traffic and remembers the big rain induced crash he was in a few weeks ago. 
 
Danny Varin walked me through his Modified win at Fonda on Saturday and gets ready to race at the Track of Champions again tonight. He talked about losing the lead at one point, how he got it back and runs down his upcoming two race weekend that will see him back behind the wheel of a 305 Sprinter again. 
 
Dave Wickham made the trip to Williams Grove and told Jeremiah Fish about his past at the track. He explains why he didn’t think his runs 25 years ago would help, thinks back on some of his good memories from that time period and the friends who made it possible for him to do it. 
 
Mark Alnutt explained why he moved to Sportsman and how much he is enjoying the racecar. He remembered how he did the last feature at Brewerton, some brake issues he had at Fulton and talks about the state of stock cars right now. 
 
Sean Sommers is just getting started in a Novice Sportsman and described how his races have gone so far. He told me some of what he has learned, why he has an old school look on his car and evaluates where he feels he needs to improve. 
 
Joe Garafalo tells me why he is not racing for points this year and why that can be a positive in some ways. He talked about the problems he had early on this season, wonders if his motor might need a break in period and how his business has been doing back home in Oswego. 

 
Tuesday, June 7th 2011
    New on the Audio Page for today:
 
J.J. Grasso told Jeremiah Fish about his recent races as he got ready to go at Williams Grove.
Brett Tonkin tells me about his Modified win at Penn Can and looks ahead to today’s big race. 
Shawn Donath recapped his weekend in Canada that saw him win his first ever ESS A-Main. 
Bob Bennett thought back on some of his past at Brewerton as he got ready to race last Friday.
Gordy Button has a new crate Late Model at home and talked about when he will bring it out. 
Wendell Washington told me how his season has been going in a Four Cylinder at Brewerton.
Jeff Hachmann explains how fans can get a free pit pass with an advance ticket for Rolling Wheels.
 
I had a good day on Monday although I was a little tired all day as I stayed up too late Sunday night and into the morning playing DiRT 3. So I have nobody to blame but myself.
 
I did some interviews in the studio and left messages for many others that I hope to hear back from soon. Of course some of those folks I will be seeing tonight as I head down to Penn Can for the Clash at the Can with Jeremiah Fish. This show pays $8,000 to the winner and anyone who is anyone or wants to be someone will be at this one.
 
As you can see we have a lot of good stuff on the site although I was cautious on emptying out the can too much as today is not a given. They are saying that strong to severe storms could happen so I will be keeping my eye out for those. But we will be on our way as long as nothing happens.
 
So look for stuff from Penn Can tomorrow but if you are one of the folks that checks me out at midnight, you may have to stay up extra late as I doubt I will be able to make it back home before midnight. 
 
And I also uploaded a lot of new photos on Monday so be sure to check the filmstrip to see those. Each is available to download as well so enjoy them and say thanks to the photographers who are kind enough to share their work with all of us. 
 
Now let’s chat more about what is new for today on the Audio Page. I begin with a chat with one of the best 360 Sprint Car drivers around. J.J. Grasso told Jeremiah Fish about his recent races as he got ready to race at Williams Grove. He also talked about a win he had at Georgetown Speedway, wonders if the track would get slick later on and thought back on some of his past at this historic speedway. 
 
Brett Tonkin tells me about his Modified win at Penn Can and looks ahead to today’s Clash at the Can. He talked about what happened in the previous weeks to put him on the pole for the feature, how the track conditions helped his big block and thinks back on how he did at last year’s clash. 
 
Shawn Donath recapped his weekend in Canada that saw him win his first ever ESS A-Main. He told me how it felt to win at a track he had never seen before, described the atmosphere at the event and gets ready to race with the Sprinter this Saturday at Fulton. 
 
Bob Bennett thought back on some of his past at Brewerton as he got ready to race last Friday. He talked about why he likes the place so much, why he trusts his son’s set up advice and reminds me what part of the car is his area of expertise. 
 
Gordy Button has a new crate Late Model at home and talked about when he will bring it out. He told me what it is, how much different it is than the one he has now and wonders which engine combination is the best to use.
 
Wendell Washington told me how his season has been going in a Four Cylinder Super Stock at Brewerton. He talked about the racecar that gets him around the track, the fun he has at the 1/3 mile track and how he would like to catch those evil front wheel Saabs. 
 
Jeff Hachmann explains how fans can get a free pit pass with an advance sale ticket for the Rolling Wheels race on July 4th. He talked about how well it worked for the first show, shared some driver reaction and reminded fans to check out www.dirtcar.com/tickets for more info or call the office at 315-834-6606. 

 
Monday, June 6th 2011
    New on the Audio Page from Jeremiah Fish’s visit to Williams Grove on Friday:
 
Bob Miller talks with J Fish about the event at the track and the inclusion of the Patriot Sprinters. 
Tim Hogue offered up his thoughts to J Fish on the up & down season he has been having.
Jared Zimbardi remembered the last time he towed to this historic track and told J Fish about it.
Jessica Zemken has been running both 410 & 360 Sprint Cars and talked about some recent gains.
Travis Rilat looked over the field of cars in the pits and how tough it would be on this night. 
Rich Vleck wraps up the PST/URC race at Williams Grove and tells J Fish his overall thoughts.
 
New from Doug’s travels over the weekend:
 
Sam Reakes IV and his dad Sam III talk about the times they have been on the track together. 
Gregg Carner has a new look on his Sportsman this year and summed up how 2011 has been.
Glen Erwin talks about his move to an IMCA Modified and how he has been enjoying the car.
 
I had a nice day on Sunday as I got to sleep late and check out a car show with my dad and daughters. I did take pictures but since it was mostly cars I have shot before I decided not to put them up.
 
As you can see we have a lot from Jeremiah Fish today and three of the people he spoke with have never been on the site before. Plus there is one other on here today that is also a first timer and I’ll send out a free t-shirt to one of you who guesses correctly. If more than one of you gets it, I’ll draw a name from a hat to see who wins. Send me your answers at doug@dougsdirtdiary.com
 
Today I will be back in the studio as I have a list of people I need to track down. And then tomorrow I will be heading to Penn Can Speedway for their big $8,000 to win Modified show. I am not sure if you guys have seen the pre-entry list but it is a great field. The ROC tour has a lot of cars and a lot of big name talent from a more diverse area than any other group out there and is surely giving the fans some great shows. 
 
And for you Fonda fans, don’t forget that the All Star Sprints are coming to the track on Wednesday and favorite daughter Jessica Zemken is expected to compete. Then the series visits Utica Rome on Sunday. Plus the ESS goes to Fulton on Saturday so it is a great time to be a Sprint Car fan in New York State.
 
Now let’s talk more about what is new for Monday on the Audio Page. And the first six clips are from a good friend of mine who was gracious enough to help. Bob Miller talks with J Fish about the event at the track and the inclusion of the Patriot Sprinters for this show. He spoke about how much history is at Williams Grove, how the season with the URC has been going so far and the broad mix of talent that follows the tour. 
 
Tim Hogue offered up his thoughts to J Fish on the up & down season he has been having so far. He talked about his second place in Delaware, the search for some consistency and how bad things just seem to happen to him at Williams Grove. 
 
Jared Zimbardi remembered the last time he towed to this historic track and told J Fish about it. He explained what he learned in the race, how much he is hoping it would help him later in the night and summed up how his year has been going. 
 
Jessica Zemken has been running both 410 & 360 Sprint Cars all over the country and talked about some recent gains. She told J Fish about getting better in time trials, her upcoming return to Fonda & Utica Rome and wonders if her past races at Williams Grove would help her on this night. 
 
Travis Rilat looked over the field of cars he was racing against and how tough he believed it would be. He talked about the 410 drivers who were also running 360’s, recapped his recent USAC events and described how much he was looking forward to getting some laps to Williams Grove. 
 
Rich Vleck wraps up the PST/URC race at Williams Grove from Friday night and tells J Fish his overall thoughts. He talked about the PST drivers that made the show, how they did on the track and how tough the conditions were. 
 
Sam Reakes IV and his dad Sam Reakes III talk about the four times they have been on the track together as they got ready for number five. They tallied up the feature win totals, teased each other about who is a better driver and then got serious about the fun they have when they get these rare opportunities. 
 
Gregg Carner has a new look on his Sportsman this year and summed up how 2011 has been. He described a recent issue he had that made it tough to see, how it contributed to some front end damage and how much it cost to fix it. 
 
Glen Erwin talks about his move to an IMCA Modified and how he has been enjoying the car. He explained why he made the move up from a Four Cylinder Super Stock, compares the costs of the two divisions and described the set up help he gets from his brothers down in Virginia. 

 
Sunday, June 5th 2011
    New on the Audio Page from the Fulton Speedway:
 
Pre race conversations:
 
Jim Graham remembered the tough way he started his season and how close he is to winning. 
Jason Parkhurst spoke about his move to a Late Model and described how he has been doing. 
Billy Clark has already equaled his win total from last year and talked about his trip to victory lane.
Chris Hile explained why they have scaled back a little this year and how it helping back home. 
Ryan Phelps recapped his Friday at Brewerton and remembered the crash he was in early on.
Tim Sears had a dream night at Brewerton winning two features and talked about today at Cornwall. 
 
After the heat races:
 
Sean McCarthy was not feeling too good in the pit area but talked about how good it felt to win. 
Dave Emmons won the second Sportsman heat and described the tough luck he has had so far. 
Jimmy Phelps went from sixth to first on the first lap of his heat and told me how he did it.
Ryan Phelps explained how he found a fast groove on the top of turn two to win his heat race. 
 
After the features:
 
Tim Sears Jr. put on a dominating performance to win the Late Model race and talked trackside. 
Doug Williams lost it early only to recover to win the Mod Lite race and enjoyed it in victory lane.
Pat Ward won the Modified race in dramatic fashion and talked about his strong late race charge. 
Jimmy Phelps led a lot of laps finishing second and compared his racecar to the race winner. 
Ryan Phelps finished in fourth place and described the battle he was in early with his cousin. 
Dale Planck had his second top five finish in as many nights and looked ahead to his next shows.
Billy Clark gets emotional in victory lane after a late race pass gets him his second win in a row. 
 
It was another nice night of racing as I made my first trip the Fulton Speedway for 2011. And the racing was real good including an exceptional Modified race. 
 
Pat Ward came from 4th to 1st in the closing laps getting by leader Jimmy Phelps on lap 33 with a nice outside move in turn two. The two were swapping lines at each end of the racetrack and it was quite a show for the fans. 
 
Early on it was a Phelps family reunion at the front after Ryan and cousin Jimmy each won their heats. Then in the feature it was Ryan leading with Jimmy chasing and eventually passing Ryan on a lap 26 restart. 
 
But in the end it was Ward who ending up winning his second feature at Fulton this year. Or course I spoke with Pat and four of the top five as well as the Modified & Sportsman heat winners and six pre race chats.
 
Now I did not get as many recordings done as usual as I think I spent more time gabbing off the mic than on it. It does happen every now and then as I just need to do some catching up with people about things we don’t necessarily record. Need to work harder on that. But I also was busy with the camera getting over 75 photos. 
 
And don’t miss the altered finger of Mike Phelps as he shows us how a pinky finger is not supposed to bend. You’ll cringe when you see it. His brother Jimmy has seen it before as you can tell by his reaction in the background. Ecch!
 
Tim Sears Jr. continued his winning ways as he ran away with the Crate Late Model feature race. It was his third win in a row this weekend and today he will try to make it four as the Sportsman Super DIRTcar Series visits one of the most unusual and fun tracks around…Cornwall Motor Speedway. 
 
Billy Clark has it going on in the Sportsman division at Fulton as he made a late race pass to win his second in a row. He only won once last year and it was at the end of the year. Looks like Billy is on his game now! 
 
And how about Doug Williams? He almost spun out in his Mod Lite feature just missing a ute tire in turn two and then comes from the back from that to win the race. Then he says he needs more motor as he is standing in victory lane. I am sure the rest of the guys he raced against are not exactly hoping he gets his wish huh?   If so, he could run off the track twice and win maybe. It’s also good Dougie knows I am kidding him but you never charge from the back to win and say you are underpowered. Bad karma!
 
So as you can tell I had a great time once again at a track that was the first one I ever attended. I just love Fulton as you sit up high and have a great view of the track. And with my new glasses I can read sponsors on the cars from as far away as the pit area. Because they are transitions lenses they look just like sunglasses so there is no vanity issue. Nobody has noticed or said anything about it. And I can see crystal clear…except when I look at my clipboard. Guess you can’t have it all huh?
 
Today I am going to a car show with my dad and daughters before heading to Penn Can on Tuesday. Tomorrow we will have a lot from Jeremiah Fish’s trip to Williams Grove on Friday night. He did ten interviews and most of those will show up tomorrow as well as some of the fourteen I have in the can. 
 
Have a great Sunday and keep checking back as you never know when new photos are going up. And I will be putting my car show pics up too so look for those. I may even include my Camaro if it is not a rainy day and take that for a ride since it is all nice and legal now. See you later!

 
Saturday, June 4th 2011
    New on the Audio Page from the Brewerton Speedway:
 
Pre race conversations:
 
Ryan Bartlett told me about a motor he exploded at Utica Rome and what was in the car now. 
Dale Planck explained why he was under the weather and looked ahead to a pair of features.
Mike Mahaney described how busy they have been back at the farm because of the wet spring. 
Mike Mullen came into the night in the top five in Mod Lite points and talked about his season. 
Jeremy Pitcher spoke about his recent feature races and how married life has been treating him. 
Ted Lamb remembered his bad crash the week before and talked about his small block Modified. 
 
After the heat races:
 
Jeremy Pitcher walked me through his heat win that saw only three Sportsman finish the race. 
Jim Witko talked about the work he did to his car during the week and his Modified heat win.
Dan Vauter led every lap in his Modified heat win and described the racing lines he was running. 
Matt Fink won the final Mod heat and told me how much the track changed in the three qualifiers. 
 
After the rained out features:
 
Tim Sears Jr. won the first Sportsman feature race and spoke about it trackside with Bill Foley
Alan Johnson led all 20 laps after the rainout restart and told me about changing his line a few times. 
Jimmy Davis had his best Brewerton finish so far coming home third and told me all about it. 
Mike Mahaney faded from second to fifth and wondered if he showed the leader his line too soon. 
 
After the 35 lap regularly scheduled Modified feature:
 
Jimmy Phelps talked about winning his first Brewerton feature of the year and his final lap. 
Billy Decker had a pair of 2nd places and walked me through his night that started with a crash. 
Dale Planck had a third place finish and told me about the three car battle he was in at the end. 
Alan Johnson finished his night out with a 4th place run and explained why he was too tight. 
Jim Witko had a successful Modified feature finishing fifth and told me what he felt best about.
 
It was another super fun night at the Brewerton Speedway as I got to report for the website and get back behind the wheel of the Tired Iron Repair Saab. It was a busy night for everyone and a long one too as a pair of rained out features from last week were added to the card.
 
It was a lot of fun and the track stayed fairly tacky all night even with all the laps that were turned on it. The first Modified feature had twenty laps to go when they waved the green flag and Alan Johnson kept his top spot after a challenge early from Mike Mahaney and went on for his second win in as many weeks. 
 
Alan rebounded for a fourth place in the second feature as Jimmy Phelps went on to record his third win of the season and his first at Brewerton. Now in the Modified division has had seven winners in seven races so far. Guess the competition is tight here huh?
 
After a crash early in the night Billy Decker went on to record two runner up finishes and was putting on quite a show as he blasted his way to the front. Let’s be honest, Billy can drive the car as hard as anyone I have seen and it was impressive to see the lines he runs sometimes. You gotta take your hat off to a guy like that. Yeah, he was that good. 
 
In an emotional race for the entire division, J.J. Courcy won the Dean Hubbs Memorial for the IMCA Modifieds. We lost Dean at a crash at the track back in 1997 ironically on the very night he debuted his home built car. That was a tough year for racing and I must admit I thought about that a lot over the course of the night and I was a little distracted at times. More on that later.
 
I’ll track J.J. down this week and make sure we have a chance to talk about how special that win was for him. Also the car that won the first ever race at Brewerton was on display as old timers were honored with a ceremony at the break. It was a special night top to bottom and I was so happy to be a part of it.
 
The racing was real good although it was a little greasy early. But with all the racing that they had planned for the night they had to get the track wet or it would have been too slick later. There were multiple grooves and as always this track continues to be one of the raciest around. And with 25 Modifieds in the pit area, there were a lot of people to root for. 
 
Tim Sears Jr. had a great night as he won a pair of Sportsman features. This young man is on quite a roll right now and you have to wonder what the next step for him may be. But as we all know all too well, a competitive Modified costs a heck of a lot more than a crate powered Sportsman. Twice as much as a minimum. 
 
This is the tough part about the sport because I am sure there are many talented drivers in Sportsman, Stock Cars or a lot of other non-headline divisions out there that could make a mark in a Modified or Sprint if they had the right opportunity or the funding to do it.  It is a cruel sport sometimes and hopefully the young Mr. Sears will get his chance sometime down the road.  
 
Now since I was doing double duty, I was hustling al night long doing interviews and taking pictures.  I did 28 interviews and took over 75 photos.  I did hold on to nine of my prerace chats and I will release them later during the week as I am going to do today at Fulton and then hit a car show with my family on Sunday.  And yes, I’ll be taking pictures at both events.
 
As for me behind the wheel, I came from 7th to 2nd in the heat and 9th to 4th in the feature. Now that 4th place finish is our lowest of the year but I felt I learned a lot last night. And I almost got 3rd at the line falling short by about a foot to former track champion Chuck Powelczyk.
 
I also do not think I was aggressive enough as I was thinking again about that tragic night back in 1997. And I actually had a dream the night before about hitting the frontstretch wall head on at Brewerton. I tried hard all night not to think about all that but I must admit I was distracted and maybe a little gun shy. 
 
Then as we were getting ready to go put for our heats a Mod Lite flipped many times on the front stretch with the driver getting some time in the ambulance afterwards. He was in there for a while too so hopefully he is ok. We’ll say a prayer for him now as he took a wild ride. 
 
So with all that going on, I might have been a little too cautious. I don’t know how these drivers come back from a hard crash and still throw their cars around as if it didn’t happen. Heck, some drivers never make it fully back after a scary crash and who could blame them? 
 
I have more respect for race drivers now than I have ever had and I did not think that was possible. I cherish my relationship with them and marvel at what they do. I have the best job in the world and there is nothing I could want now that I don’t already have. (except maybe a feature win) And now I get to do it all over again today. Thanks for reading this far down the page and if you did, send me a message at doug@dougsdirtdiary.com to share your thoughts or see me on facebook. 
 
Have a great Saturday everyone. Be safe, be fast and have fun. 

 
     
 
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