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Racing Around: Point race tightening at Fonda

August 4, 2011
By JAMES A. ELLIS ( , The Leader Herald

The importance this Saturday's racecard at Fonda Speedway could have on the points battles cannot be overstated.

It is big. It is Huuuuuuuuuge. If it were a bowling match, it would be the foundation frame. Well, you get my point, I think.

With three points races remaining, six-time track champion Bobby Varin is holding onto a one-point lead over Ronnie Johnson.

And, just to liven things up a bit for the modifieds, there is a double feature midweek event in between, offering show up points and 90 grueling laps of feature competition before running double features on the Night of Features on Aug. 13.

At least the racing surface has had a chance to recover and be worked on this week.

Heading into last Saturday's show, the track had a lot of laps on it after the 50-lap late model and modified features. It was slick last Saturday, with a rough patch entering turn one adding more of a challenge.

I overheard a couple of drivers saying they just found a comfortable line, drove through the corner and raced the rest of the track.

Anyway, while Varin and Johnson have built up enough of an advantage over third-place Ryan Odasz to settle it between themselves, other battles also have gone from simmering to boiling.

Varin also is in contention for the Thunder on the Thruway Series points chase, so Wednesday's 60-lap, $6,000-to-win event plus a 30-lap feature carries significance, too.

Pat Ward leads the Thunder Series by 16 points over Varin and Stewart Friesen, 178-162. Billy Decker is fourth with 158. R.J. is back in sixth with 116 points.

In the pro stock division, the battle between Rocky Warner and Kenny Gates has heated up again.

Two weeks ago, Gates was within four points of the division-leading Flying Squirrel but a late-race wreck, coupled with a Warner win, set the four-time division champion back 30 points.

Saturday, it was Warner whose racing luck changed as mechanical problems sent him behind the pit wall early and Gates finished second to Pete Broderson to cut the lead back to six points, 552-546, while Broderson is lurking 30 points behind Gates.

Gates is leading the Thunder Series pro stock standings with 110 points, while Glenn Forward is second with 96 and Bill Knapp is third with 92. Warner, the defending series champion is in seventh with 66 points.

Cassidy Wilson and defending division champion Rob VanAernam are separated by 14 points in the street stock division title chase, while Mark Mortensen is enjoying the largest lead of the four featured divisions with 34 points over defending 602 limited sportsman champion John Scarborough, 548-514.

Ben Righi leads Keith Tesiero Sr. by 30 points, 424-394 in the 4-cylinder standings.

Special events

The Aaron's No. 00 of David Reutimann will be on display Wednesday night at Fonda Speedway along with the Aaron's Monster Truck.

On Saturday, the Northeast Parent and Child Society therapeutic foster family program will host a speedway car show at 338 N. Comrie Ave. (between Udderly Delicious and Herba Nissan).

Cars and drivers from Glen Ridge Motorsports Park and Fonda Speedway will be on hand for the meet and greet, including Chad Edwards, Bobby Varin, Harry Shaffer, Craig Hanson and Kenny Gates. Bug Country will be on hand with a live remote broadcast.

Also on the racing card will be the 10th Annual Jack Lockhart Dash for Cash for non-winners in the 602 sportsman division who are currently in the top 25 in points as of July 30.

The Lockhart Dash for Cash for non-winners in the 602 sportsman division who are currently in the top 25 in points at Fonda Speedway will be run Saturday.

The Empire Lightning Sprint Cars will make their second trip of the season to Glen Ridge Motorsports Park as part of a full card of racing Friday on Snap-On-Tools night. Hot laps take to the track at 7 p.m. with racing starting at 7:30 p.m.


To Korey Wilder and the 21K race team, for taking the time to promote the sport of racing and make a bunch of children happy by taking their sportsman car to the Christian Church of Rural Grove.

To Ed and June Keyser for putting up the money for the heat race winners in the modified division Saturday night on Palmer Service Night. Picking up the bonus money were Ronnie Johnson, Ryan Odasz and Rob Perry. The Keysers, who promote the speedway with the Fonda Futures Club for Kids, also handed out Frisbees and presented a pair of bicycles during the night.

To Justin Auspelmyer on backing up last year's victory in the Jack Lockhart Dash for Cash with his first feature win at Fonda Speedway in the 602 limited sportsman division.



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