First, congratulations to the staff and management at Glen Ridge Motorsports Park on their successful race program last Friday night.
The Empire Super Sprint race and close finishes throughout the night in the modifieds, sportsman and street stock divisions gave the many first-time visitors plenty of actions.
Plus, Tony Stewart flying in, unannounced, from Loudon, N.H., and strapping into a 360-sprint car was an added bonus.
Stewart's visit to the track has led to several people asking me my opinion, (that right there is a scary thought in itself) about his not giving interviews to the media and spending time talking more with fans.
OK, here goes.
Tony Stewart was there to race and help out the crew of the No. 14 driven by Jessica Zemken. It gave him the opportunity, as a team owner, to address some problems the team had in a hands-on way. In addition, he got a chance to play a little bit.
If he had been paid an appearance fee to be there and did not give interviews or chat with the fans, then yes, people should be upset. But, I agree with a post on a local racing forum where the poster said if he had a choice of seeing Tony Stewart in street clothes and signing autographs for four hours or watching him race, he would take the latter every time.
The ESS show would have been a success at Glen Ridge with or without Stewart. That was a bonus and something that the reported 1,000 fans in the pits and 1,500 fans who packed into the spectator area, standing six-deep in spots, will remember.
Oh yeah, Aric Almirola, who was the standby driver for Jimmie Johnson at Loudon, was also there.
Again, congratulations to Mike Romano and Jake Spraker and their crew for putting together a good show that will only help the track in its future endeavors.
It is hard to believe that the racing season at Fonda Speedway is at the halfway point.
Multiple rainouts have kept the points battles close.
Bobby Varin has a slim 20-point lead over Matt DeLorenzo, 340-320, at the top of the modified standings. Dave Camara sits in third with 292, while Jimmy Davis and Ronnie Johnson are tied for fourth with 284. A.J. Romano is within striking distance in sixth with 264.
David Towns is in control of the open sportsman division with five straight wins and 356 points. Mark Mortensen is having a solid season and is second with 312 points, followed by Ricky Quick, 276, Vinnie Sanganetti, 272 and Rob Langavin with 265.
John Scarborough tops the 602-limited sportsman division with 310 with Ray Zemken second with 289. Rookie Brian Gleason is third with 268, while Adam McAuliffe is fourth with 262 and defending division champion Jeremiah Munson rides fifth with 258.
Roy Fifield is on top in the pro stock division with 344 points, 40 ahead of Pete Broderson and 42 up on Rocky Warner. Kenny Gates is fourth with 284, two points ahead of Ivan Joslin.
Cassidy Wilson and Rob VanAernam lead the street stock points battle with 332 and 320 points, respectively. Dave Horning Sr. rides third with 300, while Chuck McSpirit and Dan Pollock are tied for fourth with 284 apiece.
George Catanzano leads the UMP points with 423. Kevin Buff is second with 404 followed by Matt Shadic (354), Jeremy Cramer (343) and Aaron Jacobs (304).