Sarver, PA October 6, 1999
Lernerville Speedway celebrated thirty-two years of racing in 1999. Staging events for the past 32 seasons has taken a lot of teamwork, dedication and personal pride. On behalf of owners, Helen Martin and Patty Roeniqk, Co-Promoters Albert "Ouch" Roenigk and Gary "Arch" Hunter, and staff, we would like to thank everyone for their support this past year, as we look back and review 1999,
Twenty-nine evenings of competition were scheduled at the speedway. Mother Nature checkered six. Several nights were rescued by the fine work of the track and infield crew. Special events showcased the Pennzoil "World of Outlaws Sprints," All Star Sprints, two Late Model Classics, Western PA Modified Tour'99, PCTC Senior Series Races, "School Bus" Races and the season-ending Autumn-Motive Fest. Other activities included the "Kid's" Bike Races, Demolition Derbies, and F-Mods, plus the July 4~1' holiday Zambelli International Fireworks display for fan appreciation night.
Lernerville and #1 Cochran also remembered former KDKA Radio and Lernerville track announcer Bill Steinbach with a ground display during this July holiday weekend. TNN announcer Brad Doty made guest appearances and signed autographs. Nostalgia Night brought together the "stars" of yesterday for the fans to meet. Banner night was a success. Making an appearance at the track were Chad Little's John Deere Show Car and Big Foot, Little Foot. There were drives for the Marwood Food Bank, Life Steps, Make-A-Wish, Navy Recruits, March of Dimes, Diabetes Foundation, Veterans Administration, Kiwanis, Armstrong and Butler Big Brothers and Sisters, and Volunteer Fire and Ambulance Companies. The Nell family established a Glade Neil Memorial Western PA WoO Sprint Fund for the top performing local drivers in the Pennzoil WoO Races and they were Ed Lynch Jr, Jimmy Hawley and Ralph Spithaler.
The color of green and number thirteen are supposed to be unlucky in auto racing but such was not the case for Pennzoil World of Outlaws driver Steve Kinser. The "King" of the Outlaws drove an awesome race in his Quaker State green #11 at Lernerville, May 25 to comer his 13 th track AMain and capture the $10,000 top prize money. He is
Lernerville's top WoO feature victor; Sammy Swindell follows with 12. For the fourth consecutive year, Mark Kinser of Dolitic, Indiana captured the Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup Sprint Race, collecting $32,000 for the victory. His "grand slam" has netted him over $122,000 since 1966. He also set a new track record of 12.692 this July.
The third WoO Sprint race scheduled in September was cancelled due to rain the first night and the funeral of 30 year-old WoO Sprint driver Kevin Gobrecht the second evening.
The seventh annual Western PA All Star Sprint Speedweek opener at Lernerville saw Dean Jacobs take over the lead from Jimmy Hawley with two laps to go. Hawley's misfortune with engine problems was Jacob's $5,000 gain.
Young Kasey Kahne captured his career first All Star victory at the Earl and David Bauman Memorial All-Star Sprint Race collecting $6,000 Sept.3 Id . Kahne's win over Greg Hodnett came when race-long leader Dean Jacobs blew his engine as he took the white flag in the event.
Davey Johnson of Greensburg mastered the 25 lap Friedmans Supermarket's/Bi-Lo Foods Late Model Mania collecting $2,000. The "Blue Panther of Ben Miley tamed the competition and claimed the $3,000 prize in the second 30 lap Late Model Summer Classic.
Jim Weller triumphed over a stellar field of 36 cars in the 25 lap Western PA Modified Tour '99/Ferrante Oldsmobile main event.
Alan "Jim Dandy JR" Dellinger bested a field of 72 Stahl E-Mods in theYork Triathlon Series to win his seventeenth race of the year.
Blackie Watt and Harold Giradat, winning two apiece, placed them at the top of the class in the three "School Bus Races." Chris Egli and Amy Ball each took a single Powder Puff Bus Race and Cathy Grupp and Becky McClure garnered two.
Eddie Bashaar won the first Zoresko Equipment Senior Series Race and Don Gamble proudly won the Glade Neil Memorial Race in September.
The track had 16 "Fabulous Fourj' Race Nights. The 1999 Point Champions are as follows: AGIP Motor Oil Sprints-Jimmy Hawley, West Middlesex; Friedmans Supermarkets/Bi-Lo Food Late Models- Dave Norton, Shinglehouse; Ferrante Oldsmobile Modifieds- Jim Weller, Hubbard, Ohio and Dingbats Restaurant Pure StocksJoe Kelley, Mt. Pleasant.
There were five different victors in the AGIP Motor Oils Sprints. Point Champion Jimmy Hawley- had eight wine and twelve top four finishes and won nine heat races. Runner-up Ralph Spithaler claimed two wins and had fourteen top six places. Ed Lynch Jr garnered four main events and Scott Priester claimed one. It was a career first for Brent Matus after eleven years of racing
The Friedman's Supermarkets/BiLo Late Model class was the most competitive class with 10 separate winners. Point Champion Dave Norton conquered three main events and had 10 top three finishes and 14 places in the top six. The 1999 runner-up and 1998 defending champ Gary Lyle had two victories as did the third place finisher of Ben Miler. Lynn Geisler also claimed two wins but topped the most preliminary events, which was seven. Sharing one main event was Davey Johnson, Nick Jones, Dave Satterlee, Keith Zimmerman and a career first for Jeff Henry.
Consistency was the key to the efforts of the Jim Weller team. He secured the Ferrante Oldsmobile Championship on the last night of racing with his second victory and also had 14 top six finishes. Seven drivers recorded victories. Runner-up and defending Champ Brian Swartziander had four wins and won six heats. The "Modified Icon" Lou Blaney recorded six top events securing third in the point standings, having missed a couple of race nights. Collecting one victory was Kevin Bolland, Mike Sutton and it was career firsts for Chetter Johnson and Steve Young,
For the second consecutive year it was "smiling" Joe Kelley posting a banner season in the Dingbat's Rostaurant Pure Stocks. Kelley won four features, garnered 15 top six finishes, and claimed ten heat victories. Nine drivers captLired a feature event. Jeff Walters was second, earning one feature and placing in the top seven, 14 times- Dave Harbaugh won three main events to take third. Scoff l3ochek captured five races and claiming one apiece were Bobby Whitling, Jeff Walters, Bruce Milbert, Matt Lux, Mike Faas and a career first for Chris Schneider.
In 31 years of racing, the track records show the following:
Johnny Beaber-55 Lou Blaney- 49 Ralph Quarterson-47
Ed Lynch Jr-40 Craig Rankin-30 Bob Felmlee-27 Jimmy Hawley-21
Bob Wearing Sr-117 Lynn Geisler-81 Ben Miley-33 Blackie Watt-23
Lou Blaney-67 Bob Wearing Sr-61 Blackie Watt-61
Ed Lynch Sr-39 Dick Rankin-28 Brian Swartzlander-22
Milbert-27 Robinson-21 Kennedy-19 Britsky-17 Noland-17
Ralph Spithaler claimed the $1,000 bonus from Eracer's Go-Kart Park Bonus Bucs. Nine new corporate boxes and 500 bleacher seats were added to section AA.
See you at the banquet March 4, 2000. Racing will resume the first Friday in April 2000.
From the track