MARKLEYSBURG, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Roaring Knob Motorsports Complex held a Memorial Day doubleheader weekend. On Saturday evening, Flyin’ Ryan Montgomery had a perfect night in the Super Late Model division, setting the fastest time and sweeping his heat, the dash, and the feature event. On Sunday night, third generation driver Sye Lynch won the 410 Sprint Car race. Both drivers received $3,000 for their wins. However, after four successful programs over a three-week period, Roaring Knob will be dark this weekend, as Pennsylvania State Police asked the speedway to shut down. The track plans to resume racing on Saturday, June 5.
Other winners on Saturday included Braeden Dellinger in the Fastrak Crate Late Models and Drake Troutman in the E-mods. Joining Lynch in victory lane Sunday were Garrett Bard in the Allegheny Sprint Tour 305s and Corey Myers in the 270 Micros.
Ryan Montgomery and Tyler Carpenter were on the front row for the Late Model main, with Matt Sponnaugle and Michael Lake right behind them. Brian Bernheisel and Shawn Jones were in the third row, with Andy Anderson and Doug Eck in the fourth row. Ken Schaltenbrand and Travis Stickley made up row five.
It took two tries to get the race going, but when the laps started counting, it was clear that Montgomery was the man to beat this night. While he was able to lead the way, he could never break free form Carpenter, especially in the first half of the race. Numerous cautions for minor skirmishes kept giving Carpenter opportunities to challenge but he could not cash in on any of them.
Sponnaugle raced along in third the entire distance. But, behind him, things were pretty intense.
Lake and Bernheisel were mixing things up with Stickely, Jones, and Anderson. In the middle stage of the race, Bernheisel got to the fourth position. He started to close in on Sponnaugle in the second half of the contest, but he ran out of laps.
Drake Troutman came on strong in the second half as well. Starting in row seven, it did not take the young man very long to crack the top ten. He made it up to seventh or eighth and it looked as though that would be his place in the final running order. But then he found something extra and started his march toward the front, reaching fifth by the time the checkers waived.
At the finish, it was Montgomery by several car lengths over Carpenter. Sponnaugle, Bernheisel, and Troutman rounded out the top five. Lake faded to sixth. Dylan Lewis, Stickley, Kyle Knapp, and Clinton Herst were the rest of the top ten.
Heat winners were Montgomery, Anderson, Sponnaugle, and Carpenter. Montgomery won the dash. He also turned in a lap of 15.580 to get the bonus money put up for the fast time.
Trevor Collins jumped out to an early lead from his second starting spot in the Fastrak feature. However, Breaden Dellinger moved into second and he chased Collins for the first seven or eight laps. Just before the midpoint of the race, Dellinger made his move in turns three and four. He ducked under Collins to take the lead.
Dellinger then had to fend off the challenges of two-time winner Joe Martin over the second half of the race. Logan Zarin advanced from row six to the third position. Collins held off Michael Duritsky for fourth. Steve Lowery, John Over, Ryan Frazzee, Jennae Piper, and Andy Spooner were the next five finishers.
Collins, Over, and Martin prevailed in their preliminaries.
Drake Troutman went wire to wire in the E-mod fearure. Mitch Thomas rallied from an early spin to claim the second position. Darcy Rex fell back to third in the waning laps. Greg Hauger and Amber Mills completed the top five. Troutman was the heat winner as well.
A draw for the first two finishers from each of the four 410 Sprint Car heats put Landon Myers on the pole with Bradley Howard next to him. Sye Lynch lined up in third, flanked by Billy Dietrich. Then came Shelby Sheffer and A.J. Flick. Tim Shaffer shared row four with Chase Dietz, while Trey Jacobs was paired up with Danny Smith in row five.
Myers got out to an early lead, followed by Howard, Flick, Lynch, and Dietz. They maintained that running order through the first five laps. That was when Tyler Ross rolled to a stop on the backstretch. That stoppage enable Lynch to bolt into second on the restart. Shaffer followed into the fourth spot.
The field completed another five rounds before Danny Smith spun in turn two. The restart saw another move in the lead group, as Shaffer passed Howard for third in turn one after taking the green flag.
Myers continued to set a torrid pace, while Shaffer began to close in on Lynch. Another caution came out just after the halfway mark, as Flick slowed. He drove off the track in turn two, ending his bid for a top ten finish.
Myers completed three more laps as the leader when he, too, suddenly slowed. He came to a stop midway down the backstretch, handing the lead over to Lynch.
Lynch held control for the remaining ten laps of the contest. Although Lynch was able to gain some separation in the race’s longest green flag run, Shaffer came storming back in the last few laps. Lynch had caught some slower traffic and that enabled the veteran to close the margin substantially.
When the lead duo took the white flag, Lynch’s lead had shrunk to just a car length or two. Shaffer tucked in behind Lynch as they raced through turns one and two, and he moved around on the backstretch searching for a spot to make a pass for the win. Shaffer dipped to the inside coming off turn four, while Lynch stayed in the middle of the track. Shaffer got to Lynch’s left rear wheel just as the checkers waived.
Behind Lynch and Shaffer was Billy Dietrich. Dietz turned in a creditable run for fourth. Fifth was Cole Duncan, who passed twelve cars to gain the hard charger bonus for the race.
Jeff Halligan was sixth, followed by Howard, Tyler Walton, Jack Sodeman, Jr., and Ross.
The heat winners were Flick, Lynch, Dietrich, and Sheffer. T.J. Michael looked like he would join that group, but a hard crash in turn one on the final lap eliminated him from further competition. he was unhurt. The pair of B Mains went to R.J. Jacobs and Dylan Cisney.
Layton Wagner and Jason Dolick also flipped in turn four in separate incidents, but neither of them were injured. Wagner was able to make repairs and started his heat and the B Main. Dolick was done after his heat race miscue.
In the Allegheny Sprint Tour feature, Bard made his big move on the opening lap wrestling the lead away from Jake Frye as they raced through turns one and two. Kyle Keen and Brandon Hawkins had ringside seats for that display of power. Kyle Colwell and Justin Clark raced along from their third row starting positions.
Bard , Frye, and Keen had a fairly easy time at the front of the field. Clark, Colwell, Hawkins, and Dave Brown were mixing things up for the next several positions. Their battle came to a halt when Colwell slowed for the second caution of the race, with just five laps to go. While the field was circulating under the yellow, Clark came to a stop as well, so two top contenders were eliminated.
Bard completed the final five rounds without incident, as did Frye and Keen. Hawkins crossed in fourth, followed by John Walp. The next five to the finish line were Brown, Larry McVey, Jacob Gomola, Tyler Cochran, and Don Melair.
The three heat winners were Frye, Hawkins, and Clark. Saban Bibent took his car back to Cincinnati with heavy damage as he crashed from the lead of the third heat. He, too, was unhurt. There was no B Main.
In the 270 Micros, Corey Myers easily outdistanced the other racers. But Brian Borawiec and Todd Ruesser put on quite a show fighting for the second spot, which ultimately went to Borawiec. Steve Dunmire was fourth and Ryan Fredericks was fifth. Federicks and Myers split the heats. There was no B Main.
Chip Ganassi Racing unveils Alex Palou’s No. 10 DHL Honda
INDIANAPOLIS, IN (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Chip Ganassi Racing unveiled the livery for two-time and reigning NTT INDYCAR SERIES Champion Alex Palou’s DHL Honda on Tuesday. DHL signed on as the primary sponsor this off-season in a multi-year partnership with the team.
The No. 10 car will carry the familiar yellow of DHL’s branding but adds a splash of red that has been synonymous with the Ganassi team for decades.
“As everybody can see, this is quite the amazing livery,” said Palou. “The No. 10 DHL Honda looks very aggressive, and it will certainly stand out on the track, which is great. I can’t wait to start the season with a run in this livery at Sebring before we kick things off in St. Pete. It’s looking like the perfect livery to try to defend our title in 2024 and I cannot wait to deliver on-track here soon.”
The NTT INDYCAR SERIES season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg presented by RP Funding takes place March 8-10 on the streets of St. Pete.
Jean Lynch Classic Coming to Lernerville Speedway
(February 6th, 2024) – Western PA Speedweek and Lernerville Speedway are introducing ‘The Jean Lynch Classic presented by Rustler Sales & Service’ as the cornerstone event of the 2024 Western PA Speedweek. The $4,000 to win, $350 to start event on Friday, May 31st will mark the highest paying Speedweek race since the 2021 reincarnation.
“My family and I can’t thank Tyler Beichner, Lernerville Speedway, and everyone involved with Western PA Speedweek enough for putting this together to honor my grandmother Jean Lynch,” said racer Sye Lynch, Jean’s grandson, in a Facebook post. “Her accomplishments and legacy in the racing world should never be forgotten. My team and I are working to make this night even more special and memorable for everyone. That’s how “Mrs. Jean” as many called her, would want it.”
Jean Lynch was a pioneer for women in racing with ties to tracks and organizations such as NASCAR, CART, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Indy 500, the All Star Circuit of Champions and Ohio Sprint Speedweek, and much more. However, her love for racing never left the local racing scene as she could be found managing, promoting, and renting out tracks all across the northeast. The pinnacle of Jean’s lifelong love for racing came in 2013 when she was inducted into the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame. Lynch is also a member of the Lernerville Speedway Hall of Fame, Pittsburgh Circle Track Hall of Fame, Tri-City Speedway Hall of Fame and DIRT Motorsports Hall of Fame.
Lynch passed away last year on June 30, 2023.
Rustler Sales and Service is teaming up with Western PA Speedweek to be presenting sponsor of the Jean Lynch Classic. Owned and operated by former racer Brian Steinman, Rustler Sales and Service specializes in heavy truck sales, service and towing across northwestern Pennsylvania. Call (814) 214-7023 or visit rustlersalesandservice.net to find out how Rustler’s can best serve you.
JEAN LYNCH CLASSIC PAYOFF:
Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix Names MINI 2024 Marque Of The Year
PITTSBURGH, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – MINI, the iconic British brand, is the 2024 ‘Marque Of The Year’ for the Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix. 2024 marks the third time for the brand to receive the honor, which also occurred in 2004 and 2014.
“Excitement is in the air as MINI and MINI of Pittsburgh takes the spotlight as ‘Marque of the Year’, said Morgan McLane, Motoring Advisor at MINI of Pittsburgh. “Join us as we revitalize the spirit of motoring, embrace the elegance of the past, and set the stage for a future filled with MINI adventures.”
MINIS will be everywhere this summer in Pittsburgh including on-track both weekends and at all of the PVGP car shows throughout race week, July 26 through August 4.
“This honor is a testament to our commitment to excellence and we can’t wait to share this thrilling ride with the entire Pittsburgh community,” said Jason Karpa, Motoring Manager at MINI of Pittsburgh.
The Classic MINI debuted in 1959 as an inexpensive, 4-person “saloon” that didn’t use a lot of gas or take up a lot of space.
MINIS are no stranger to the race track. In 1961 British racing legend John Cooper added some horsepower, bigger brakes, tuned the suspension a tweak and the Classic MINI Cooper 997 was born.
John Cooper’s Classic MINI Cooper and Cooper S went on to dominate the 1960’s race scene, winning almost every international competition imaginable, including historic wins at Monte Carlo in 1964, 1965, 1966 and 1967.
MINIS will be on the track in 2024 as Mini of Pittsburgh and Vince Longo Jr. team up for the MINI Track Rides program for the 11th year. Three race-equipped MINI Coopers are custom-wrapped and showcased on the track and at Grand Prix Race Week events. Longo and his certified racers take riders around the track for an experience and view you can only get from inside a car.
Todd Cook created the 2024 PVGP Poster, which features Bruce Whipple racing his 1962 Austin MINI Cooper S that competes at Schenley Park and Pitt Race. Whipple, from Newton, New Jersey plans to change his race number to 42 signifying the 42nd running of the PVGP to match the poster.
Cook also created a second poster featuring a GT40 in honor of the GT40 60th Reunion the PVGP is hosting July 26-28.
For a complete schedule of events, visit PVGP.org.