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Saturday’s Jook George Steel City Classic At PPMS Now Richest Race In RUSH History

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IMPERIAL, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Saturday night’s “Jook George Steel City Classic” is now the richest race in RUSH history with over $10,000 to-win up for grabs in Saturday night’s 30th annual event.

Event coordinator Branden Lockwich told Pittsburgh Racing Nowthat presenting sponsorship from Zarin Truck & Auto and additional contributions from the George Family, Miley Motor Sports, FK Rod Ends, and others are making the event the biggest payday in the tri-state area for the RUSH Late Model Touring Series.

“This year I was blessed to have Jim Zarin, who is a longtime racer at the track, and his son Logan now races in the class,” said Lockwich.  “He approached me and came on and said he wanted to be the presenting sponsor, so that kind of got the ball rolling and got me thinking maybe we can get it to ten-thousand this year.”

“On behalf of the Jook George family, we wanted to do something extra special this year since it’s the 30th anniversary for what used to be called the ‘Fall Classic’ at Pittsburgh’s Pennsylvania Motor Speedway,” expressed Dana George.  “Jook and his #10 race team looked forward to this race every year so we have contributed additional funds so that the first-place prize money will be a grand total of $10,010!”

There is even more money on the line for the race-winner.  Lockwich said PPMS owners Miley Motor Sports also came up with an additional bonus if the winner contributes to the event.

“We wanted to do something to reward the teams and drivers that support this race year-in and year-out,” said Lockwich.  “We came up with the idea of a thousand-dollar bonus, so if Jim Smith wins the ‘Jook George Memorial’ and contributes as far as a lap sponsor, he will win that $1,000 bonus making his payday $11,010, which is pretty good for that class on a one-day race.”

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“Miley Motor Sports is ecstatic about the 30th edition of the RUSH Dirt Late Model Series ‘Jook George Classic’, which is set-up to be the biggest and best ever to honor our great friend of racing, Jook George,” said PPMS promoter Matt Miley. “We can’t thank Branden, the RUSH team, and all who have contributed enough.  It’s a win, win, win, win – for racers, fans, sponsors and the Speedway.”

RUSH announced that payouts for positions 6-26 in the Feature have been increased along with the entire non-qualifier payoff plus 6-Dash positions will now pay.  There will also be a “$500 Club” drawing for the top 15 in PPMS Points where 5-drivers will receive $100 each.

“I started this in 2015 just figuring it would be a one-time deal but it just kind of grew every year,” said Lockwich.  “I’ve been blessed because a lot of these guys and gals that sponsor, they’ve been with me since I took over in 2015.”

Lockwich and Miley are expecting a huge field attempting to qualify for the 50-lap feature.

“I would look for close to 50 if not more cars,” said Lockwich.  “Last year the race was $5,010 to-win and we had 51.  I’d say we’re looking at over 50-cars from 5-or-6-States, maybe some guys from Canada.”

“It’s really amazing how this event has grown and how so many people have gotten behind it to make this all possible,” expressed RUSH Director Vicki Emig.  “We can’t thank the George Family, Miley Motor Sports, Branden and so many others for their amazing contributions, and allow us to present this as a RUSH Late Model Touring Series event.  To think that one driver has the ability to win well over $11,000 is pretty incredible.”

Tickets are available. For more information you can visit the tracks website at www.ppms.com or call 412-279-7223.  The track phone number on race day is 724-695-3363 or 724-695-0393.

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Local Racing

Sye Lynch Partnering With Baughman Motorsports

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APOLLO, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Sprint Car driver Sye Lynch is partnering with Baughman Motorsports for the 2021 racing season.

Lynch, the third generation 410 Sprint Car driver, and his team plan to enter around 80-events as part of this partnership with Josh Baughman and Baughman Motorsports.  Longtime Lynch partner Mosites Motorsports joins new marketing partners Fischer Body Shop of Missouri and Hollywood Blasting and Coating of Odessa, Texas as part of the arrangement.

“I couldn’t be more excited,” said Lynch. “To have Fischer Body Shop and Baughman Motorsports join our efforts at Sye Lynch Racing is pretty special. We’ve been working on these plans for over four months. I’m not sure how we were able to keep it a secret this long, but it’s out there now. I’m ready to get started.”

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Lynch’s schedule is still being finalized but highlights include some of sprint car racing’s premier showcases like the Kings Royal at Eldora Speedway (July 15 & July 17) and the Knoxville Nationals at Knoxville Raceway (August 11-14).

“We are still working out the logistics side of things,” said Lynch. “I hope to have a complete plan of attack released in the coming weeks. I just want to thank all of my partners for their dedication and support. Our goal is to go out every night and put on a show. I’m confident we have what it takes to do that.”

Baughman is stepping back from full-time competition in 2021 but plans to run 10-15 events in 2021.

“We are excited about this new venture with Sye Lynch,” said Baughman. “He’s a talented kid with the hunger to win and we’re proud to be affiliated. I think it’s safe to say that we are all anxious to get the year underway.”

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Dirt Racing

Schatz Scores Jean Lynch Classic Win at East Bay

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Photo: Chad Warner

GIBSONTON, FL (February 2, 2021): Donny Schatz scored an impressive win over the Madsen brothers, Ian and Kerry, in the second running of the Jean Lynch Classic for the All Star Circuit of Champions at East Bay Raceway Park. The All Stars’ visit to the ‘Clay by the Bay’ was cut to one night due to heavy rain that hit the track Sunday and continued into Monday. The speedway looked more like the fish farm that Jimmy Mingo and others converted into a racy oval over four decades ago. A substantial pond remained inside turn one on Tuesday but, fortunately, no Sprint Cars made a detour into that area.

“It’s been a long time since I was at East Bay,” Schatz said. He estimated that his last appearance at the track was in the early ’90s. “It’s really neat, tricky; it has some slick spots, some shiny spots.” Nonetheless, Schatz had no difficulty mastering the unfamiliar surface.

Ian Madsen and Cory Eliason paced the field for the 30 lap feature event named for the lady who was a former co-owner of the series and track manager at East Bay. Schatz lined up third, with Justin Peck beside him. Tony Stewart and Anthony Macri were in the third row, and Steve Buckwalter and Tyler Courtney in the fourth. The final dash participants, Kyle Reinhardt and Tim Shaffer, made up row five. Then came Jamie Myers and Gio Scelzi.

Eliason assumed command on the opening lap and he began to distance himself from Schatz, Ian Madsen, Peck, and Macri. However, just five laps into the race, Eliason collided with a slower car driven by Chris Windom. Eliason got a flat right front tire, but there was no other apparent damage to his car, so he was able to resume the race at the rear of the field.

Peck, who had slipped by Schatz on the last completed lap, took off at the drop of the green. Schatz raced along in second, followed by Ian Madsen, Courtney, Shaffer, and Macri. The man on the move, though, was Kerry Madsen, who was up to seventh from 17th on the starting grid.

A caution bunched things up at lap eleven. While the front runners did not change, Kerry Madsen made some aggressive moves to enter the top five.

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With fourteen laps in the books, Schatz was hounding Peck for the lead. He got a strong run off of turn two, but Peck moved up a lane to block his advance. Schatz deftly turned under Peck halfway down the back stretch and he was the new leader entering turn three. Peck no longer had the steam to race with the leaders and he slowly started to drift back in the running order after that.

The final caution was displayed on lap 17. Schatz continued to lead over Ian Madsen when racing resumed, but now the battle was for third. Courtney and Kerry Madsen were the contestants, with Shaffer looking for an opening. Madsen wrestled the spot away from Cortney in a few laps, and he set out after his brother.

The sibling rivalry intensified as the pair of Aussies picked their way through lapped traffic. “I didn’t know it was him,” Ian said of the driver pressing him for second. “I knew that he started pretty far back.” For his part, Kerry Madsen had to wonder how things would have played out differently if he had started closer to the front. “It was a great run, I had a great car and could go anywhere I wanted.”

Schatz maintained his lead to the finish. Ian held off his older brother for second. Courtney was fourth and Scelzi benefitted from a miscue by Shaffer on the final lap to gain the fifth spot. Shaffer, Peck, Stewart, Brent Marks, and Hunter Schuerenberg completed the top ten.

Kerry Madsen was the hard charger, advancing 14 positions.

Ian Madsen was the fastest qualifier of the night, turning in a lap of 12.680 seconds. Buckwalter, Courtney, Shaffer, and Schatz scored heat wins. The dashes belonged to Ian Madsen and Eliason. Terry McCarl captured the B Main.

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Local Racing

Western PA Sprint Speedweek Adds Another Sponsor

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SHIPPENVILLE, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Western PA Sprint Speedweek is adding another partner to the growing list of companies stepping up to support the five-race series this June.

J.S. Bova Excavating LLC has signed on to be a presenting sponsor of this summer’s upcoming five-race speedweek, scheduled to run from Wednesday, June 2nd through Sunday, June 6th.

J.S. Bova is a family-owned excavating company and general contractor known for its outstanding service, extensive expertise, steadfast reliability, and commitment to safety. J.S. Bova proudly serves the Eastern Ohio and Western Pennsylvania area out of their central Struthers, Ohio location.

“We’re excited to get behind the revival of Western PA Speedweek” said owner Joe Bova. “We believe the area sprint car competition and racetracks are underrated and on the upswing, and we want to be associated with the excitement that this event brings.”

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Joe and Sherri Bova founded their business in 2013 and worked together to build their organization from the ground up. In less than a decade they have expanded their portfolio to offer a wide range of services and have earned an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

Schaeffer’s Specialized Lubricants signed on to be the title sponsor of Western PA Sprint Speedweek last week.

Western PA Sprint Speedweek returns from a 20-year hiatus June 2nd-6th. Western Pennsylvania’s ‘410 Sprint Cars’ will compete for five straight nights with each show featuring a strong $3,000-to-win, $250-to-start purse.

Schaeffer’s Specialized Lubricants Western PA Sprint Speedweek presented by J.S. Bova Excavating Schedule:

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