May 20, 2011 11:42 PM EST
Fran Hilton Dominates at Black Rock
Rich Vleck, DUNDEE, NY (May 20, 2011)- Optimal track conditions made the Black Rock Speedway very racy on what turned out to be a beautiful spring night, but the battle for the lead in the second half of the sportsman feature was not much of a contest as one driver made it look easy in front of the pack.
Fran Hilton, of Geneva, took the lead from local Brent Ayers on lap 11 and then checked out from the pack for his first feature win at Black Rock in nearly a year. Hilton has been fast throughout May, but was in a league of his own on Friday.
Hilton started sixth and moved his way into third by the time the first caution occurred on lap three for a multi-car pile-up on the front stretch. Two laps after the restart “The Gentlemen” dove underneath Eric Williams for second and set his sights on early leader Brent Ayers.
Hilton finally got the optimal drive off the bottom of turn four to take the lead and then on the two restarts that ensued was impressive, gaining a major advantage down the straight away and never having an issue through the first set of corners.
Brent Ayers would hang on for a career-best second place, keeping point leader Donnie Lawson at bay as Lawson would settle for third. Chris Silvers was solid for fourth for the second straight week with Ray Bliss Jr. completing the top-five.
Dave DuBois, of Corfu, scored his first late model feature since July of 2009 on Friday as he held off a hard-charging Glenn Whritenour for the win.
“We’ve been struggling trying to get everything together and tonight it finally came together,” noted DuBois in Victory Lane.
Despite having the left front tire well off the ground in the heat and barely qualifying for the handicap process, the 2008 track champion hit the setup in the feature and moved by Brandon Smith on the lap four restart and would never lose the lead again.
Whritenour took second on the race’s final restart on lap 10 and despite closing in on DuBois, would have to settle for the runner-up finish. Smith was third, with Jim Johnson and Dusty Waters completing the top-five.
Scott Bennett helped the speedway with restoring the lights during the intermission, and then lit it up on the track as he dominated the IMCA Modified feature for his first win at the Speedway.
Bennett, of Waverly, ran down early leader Josh Sawyer on lap eight and then ran away in his No. 18s to become the fourth different winner in the division this season.
Sawyer held on for second in yet another caution-free event for the division. Rich Karlnoski was third ahead of point leader Mike Smith who used a borrowed ride to start the feature. 2006 Street Stock Champion Dave Yehl rounded out the top-five in his first start in the division.
After watching the sportsman feature from the infield, Jared Hill recognized that the bottom would be the quick way around the track. Despite running the middle groove for much of the race, the Dundee resident held off Chris Fisher for the final 10 laps to pick up his first win in nearly a year.
Hill took the lead from Scott Sebring on lap nine and one lap later Fisher was in second and pressing the No. 93 for the lead. Fisher consistently dove underneath Hill, but each time was unsuccessful in his bid for the lead.
One final caution flag flew before the final lap would be completing setting up a final restart where Hill was perfect. Like Fran Hilton in the sportsman division, it was Hill’s first win since June 18, 2010.
Bob Buono would climb up to third in the late stages with early leader Scott Sebring and Frank Guererri Jr. completing the top-five.
Dylan Cecce capped off the show in style as he won a duel with Brandon Morseman for his third win of the season in 4-cylinder division.
Cecce, of Bath, took the lead from Ray Cornish on lap four but would soon hand it over to Morseman for a lap before taking the lap for good.
On the final lap, Morseman peaked to the inside but Cecce had just enough momentum to pad his point lead. Behind those top two were Rick Horton, Val Stephens and Scott Bradley.
The speedway will lie dormant next Friday in observation of Memorial Weekend. Racing action resumes on June 3rd and 4th with a pair of shows highlighted by monster trucks. A full racing card will be part of the Friday program. For more information, visit www.BlackRockSpeedway.com.
Hoselton Auto Mall Crate Sportsman Feature (20 Laps)- FRAN HILTON, Brent Ayers, Donnie Lawson, Chris Silvers, Ray Bliss Jr., Steve Swarthout, Eric Williams, Brady Fultz, Serenity Sutherland, Gary Hotailing, Rob Richmond Jr., Russell Morseman III, Sean Sommers, Matt Richmond, John Juhl, Brandon Butler, Trevor Sutherland, Randy McCulloch, Loren Lincoln, Tyler Siri.
Lap Leader- Ayers 1-10, Hilton 11-20.
Heat Winners- Ayers, Juhl, Silvers.
Lap Leaders- Wonderling 1, Miller 2, Smith 3, DuBois 4-20.
Heat Winners- Smith, Wonderling.
Lap Leaders- Sawyer 1-7, Bennett 8-20.
Heat Winners- Karlnoski, McNeal.
Lap Leaders- McIntyre 1-5, Sebring 6-8, Hill 9-20.
Heat Winners- Fisher, Daggett, Buono.
Signs Plus of Kanona/ Watkins Glen NAPA 4-Cylinder Feature (20 Laps)- DYLAN CECCE, Brandon Morseman, Rick Horton, Val Stephens, Ray Cornish, Ray Speicher, Scott Bradley, Chris Ayers, Mike Ziarno, Brian Thompson, Adam Austin, Billy Cagle, Bobby Teed, Andy Stamp, Del Cummings (DNS), Jordan Siri (DNS).
Lap Leaders- Cornish 1-4, Cecce 5-6, Morseman 7, Cecce 8-20.
Heat Winners- Morseman, Cecce.
Home Necessities Bandits (10 Laps)- ALLISON TEED, Lance Irwin, Zach Teed, Lewis Sharpsteen, Brandon Matthews, Trista Teed, Lisa Cornish.
Lap Leaders- Irwin 1, A. Teed 2-4, Z. Teed 5, A. Teed 6-10.