Fultz, Swarthout and Smith Score $1,000 Each
Rich Vleck, DUNDEE, NY, (November 5, 2011)- Dave Boylan had run most of the enduro races at Black Rock this season, but had never gone to Victory Lane at the 4/10-mile until Saturday, when he scored the $10,000 top prize.
Boylan led the 100-lap feature on seven different occasions, including pacing the field for the final 34 laps, but a mechanical issue with four laps remaining nearly ended up costing him the big payday as he would cross underneath Scott Hixson’s Checkered Flags ahead of Klem Underwood by just a bumper-length. That tenuous moment would later be inconsequential as Underwood’s No. 06 was disqualified after the event.
“I’m not sure what happened (at the end of the race),” admitted Boylan after the race. “I think something was breaking. I knew (second-place Underwood) was behind me because I could see the scoreboard but I wasn’t sure what his car looked like so when guys got by me at the end I didn’t know if I was still leading.”
Boylan started in seventh after getting a guaranteed starting spot in the October 21st Klein Steel Retail Enduro for finishing in third. Polesitter Joe Boylan would pace the field for the first three laps until Dave Boylan took the lead. He would swap the position with multiple drivers until the lap 50 pit stop, where he was the leader.
The track was re-watered at halfway, which made things slow for the first few laps. George Rushlow would take the lap a few times until his No. 24 fell out on lap 67, where Dave Boylan would hold on from there.
Klem Underwood, a 4-cylinder regular at Dunn Hill 2, had a treacherous race but somehow stayed on the lead lap to be in the running at the end. He made a fierce bid down the frontstrech but would cross in second before later being disqualified.
John Babcock, who got the call this week to drive the No. 10, rallied from two laps down to be the final car on the lead lap in second. Nate Peckham ended up third and was the first car one lap down. He has now finished “The Big One” in the top five all three times. The other car one lap down was Jeff Hamilton, who came from Louisville, KY to score in fourth. Rick Stiles, who battled with Boylan the entire second half of the race despite being two laps down rounded out the top five.
Rich Swarthout entered the race track with the planned to run the open sportsman feature just to get a few extra laps and take in a few extra dollars while he concentrated on the crate sportsman event, but anytime the veteran driver puts on his racing helmet, he goes for the win, and that’s just what captured despite being underpowered.
Swarthout, of Geneva, went to Victory Lane in his first sportsman feature at BRS, just like he did in his first sprint car start there in 2004. “The Phatman” thought he had no shot at the win early on when he fell back to fifth after starting on the outside pole but he steadily got those positions back by using the inside line, getting back to third.
“I’m usually a bottom-dweller anyways,” admitted Swarthout in Victory Lane. “I thought I was a goner with this stock GM Motor.”
On the lap 13 restart, Swarthout drove underneath Phil Vigneri for second place in turn 2 and then executed a perfect slidejob in turn four to grab the lead from Brian White. It was a daring move that would give the No. 38 a lead that he would stretch out until a caution on lap 28 would set up a sprint to the finish.
“When (the caution flag) came out I got worried because I knew those open motors would have some power on the restart but it worked out.”
The final driver to challenge Swarthout was Anthony Perrago, who also had fallen back early in the race but took over second place when Jim LaRock gave up the runner-up spot with two laps to go. Perrago peaked to the inside of Swarthout on the lap 29 restart but would have to settle for second.
Phil Vigneri fought hard inside the top five all race and would cross in third, while Randy Brokaw used multiple lines to finish fourth. Brady Fultz would quietly work his way forward to round out the top five finishers.
Up until Saturday, Mike Smith, the 2011 IMCA Modified Track Champion, who had won 13 features at BRS this season, but had failed to finish either of the two special races this season. Helped in part by quality draws and no mechanical issues, Smith cruised to win 14 at the track this season.
Smith, of Arkport, led all 30 laps en route to the $1,000 top prize that was also a Boone Nationals FastShaft Qualifier. Ray McClure would charge up through the pack in his No. 15M and make a few bids for the lead, but with seven laps remaining, his car would come to a stop, handing the runner-up spot back to Chris Fleming, who was not able to close in on Smith for the win and would have to settle for second. Eddie Sites stayed consistent throughout the race and placed third in the No. 28. J.J. Courcy railed from early-race problems to rebound for fourth while Mark Griffin rounded out the top-five.
The Crate Sportsman was the third feature, and with the first two finding most of the competitors on the bottom, some frontrunners ran the inside, but Brady Fultz found the top line to his liking and used it to score the win.
Fultz, from Dundee, became the first driver to win his fourth sportsman race of the year at BRS as he drove around Ray Bliss to complete lap four and then had to fight off Anthony Perrego to claim the $1,000 top prize.
“The track hasn’t been like that all year, that was great,” exlciamed Fultz in Victory Lane. “It changed a lot of after the early features and I saw the top had some bite so I went up there, got the lead, and stayed there the whole way.”
Fultz started in sixth but on a lap two restart built up momentum on the top of the track and drove to the lead. Fultz would have some challenges after many of the restarts but his car would come to life after a few laps of green flag action. A slower restart on lap 21 would allow Perrego to drive underneath the No. 70 to grab the lead but Fultz was poised to drive back by.
“He was running good on the bottom but I knew the top was where I had to be so I stayed with it and it worked out,” added Fultz.
Coming to complete lap 24, Fultz got back around Perrego and then began to drove away. Soon after, Bob Henry Jr. would also get by Perrego’s No. 18 and began to cut the lead down but would come up a few laps short and come home in second.
Perrego would hang on for third while early leader Ray Bliss Jr. was fourth. Jim LaRock would round out the top five.
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Black Rock Speedway Results: 11/5/2011-
Big One Enduro Day
Big One Enduro Top-20 (100 Laps)- DAVE BOYLAN, Jeff Babcock, Nate Peckham, Jeff Hamilton, Rick Stiles, Martin Weaver, Nick Griest, Bill Davis, Joe Grocholski, Matt Prescott, Derek Frank, Bill Price Jr., Jeremiah Clonch, Eric Boynton, Nate Freeland, Justin Hillard, Shaun Ryba, Tim Gillette, Klem Underwood (DQ).
Lap Leaders- J. Boylan 1-4, D. Boylan 5-8, Pierce 9-14, J. Boylan 15, D. Boylan 16-22, Peckham 23, D. Boylan 24-29, Neiss 30, D. Boylan 31-32, L. Albanese 33-40, D. Boylan 41-59, Ruslow 60, D. Boylan 61-65, Ruslow 66, D. Boylan 67-100.
Crate Sportsman Feature (30 Laps)- BRADY FULTZ, Bob Henry Jr., Anthony Perrego, Ray Bliss Jr., Jim LaRock, A.J. Lloyd, Bob Johnson, Fran Hilton, Gary Hotelling, Trevor Sutherland, Josh Butler, Brandon Butler, Gus Hurlburt, Brent Ayers, Tyler Dippel, Chris Daughrety, Tyler Siri, Donnie Lawson, Rob Humphreys, Bill Williams, Quinn Sutherland, Rich Swarthout, Ross Vleck, John Venuto, Loren Lincoln.
Lap Leaders- Bliss 1-3, Fultz 4-21, Perrego 22-23, Fultz 24-30.
Did Not Qualify- Jamie Batzel, Tim Bebout, Walt Chyrwaty, Billy Brown.
Heat Winners- Hotelling, Swarthout, Lawson, Henry.
Consi Winner- Q. Sutherland.
Open Sportsman Feature (30 Laps)- RICH SWARTHOUT, Anthony Perrago, Phil Vigneri, Randy Brokaw, Brady Fultz, Ray Bliss Jr., Robert Caswell, Brian White, Jim Spano, Chris Daugherty, AJ Lloyd, Gary Hotelling, Jim LaRock, Greg McClosky, Bob Henry Jr., John Venuto, Joe Cook Jr., Ross Vleck, Zach VanNordstrand, Don Slover, Vinny DeCicco (DNS).
Lap Leaders- Vigneri 1, White 2-13, Swarthout 14-30.
Heat Winners- Daugherty, Hotelling, White.
IMCA Modified Feature (30 Laps)- MIKE SMITH, Chris Fleming, Eddie Sites, J.J. Courcy, Mark Griffin, Gary Roberts, Rich Karlnoski, Jerry Lobdell Jr., Brad Weaver, Mike VanDyke, Kevan Cook, Jared Kinney, Jim Walsh, Don Newell, Ray McClure, Pete Neff, Jason Amidon, Josh VanTassel, X, 56.
Lap Leaders- Smith 1-30.
Heat Winners- Sites, Smith.