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Racing Around: Sitterly claims Oswego crown

September 3, 2009
By JAMES A. ELLIS, The Leader-Herald

After a second-place finish in the first of the Aug. 22 twin features for Supermodifieds at Oswego Speedway, Otto Sitterly took it easy and cruised to a seventh- place finish in the second 30-lap feature.

The runner-up finish was enough for the Canajoharie driver to lock up his second straight track championship in Oswego's premier class. Sitterly edged runner-up Joey Payne by 29 points, 1,062-1,033, for his third championship in four years.

"It is sort of cool," Sitterly said. "We had a very good race car this year. We had two wins this year with my car and we ran 10 wingless features and eight times were in the top four. One time, we had a crash and another we didn't finish. We were seventh in the last point race, but we were pretty much just riding to make sure we secured our points deal."

Now the team has its sights set on the 53rd Annual Budweiser International Classic this weekend at Oswego.

"We just bought another new car, called an Extreme. It is new to us at least," Sitterly said. "We are putting a motor in it and getting it ready. John [car owner John Nicotra] may put a driver in it. I will test it Friday and then we may put a shoe in it for the Classic."

While Sitterly has three track titles to his credit, victory in the Classic has eluded him.

"I have been second in the Classic," he said. "We have the two Hawk cars we had last year and Davey Hamilton will be in the other car for the Classic. Both of the cars are very competitive and have a good chance of winning Sunday's race."

Earlier this season, Sitterly had the opportunity to team up with NASCAR driver Kasey Kahne for a race and put on a show before beating Kahne to the finish line.

"It was an exhibition," Sitterly said. "He did very well, actually, better than I expected."

Originally, Ryan Newman was scheduled to drive one of the Nicotra cars, but complications put Kahne in the car instead.

"Newman got in my car and his shoulders were bulging up over the bars on the sides," Sitterly said. "He couldn't have driven it, it was way too tight."

Championship Saturday

Glen Ridge Motorsports Park will wrap up its 2009 points battles Saturday night.

Rainouts the last two Saturdays have altered the original plans for this weekend.

Saturday's race program will feature double points for all divisions.

Last weekend's Ridge Runner Budget Sportsman Series race will be run Saturday after the fifth leg of the series will run Friday night at Albany-Saratoga Speedway.

The Midstate Vintage Car Club also is scheduled to be part of the event.

Gates open at 5 p.m. with hot laps taking to the track at 7 p.m. and racing starting at 7:30 p.m.

James A. Ellis is a sports reporter for The Leader-Herald. We invite your feedback on this or any other sports-related topic. E-mail your opinions or ideas to us at



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