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Racing Around: Wilder closes in on title

August 30, 2012
By JAMES A. ELLIS ( , The Leader Herald

The season-long points battle for the modified track championship has come down to the final race of the season at The Ridge.

Bobby Varin led Jeremy Wilder by eight points heading into last week's 35-lap main event.

However, a first-lap wreck broke the front end on Varin's car, relegating him to a 16thplace finish.

Meanwhile, Jeremy Wilder stayed out of trouble and drove to a runner-up finish behind Marc Johnson to take over the top spot in the standings by 21 points, 793-772, heading into Saturday's finale.

Craig Hanson is third in the points with 706.

Hanson has been strong, only to have bad luck strike while leading the main events the past two weeks.

Bobby Vedder (574), Danny Varin (559) and Johnson are locked in a battle for the fourth spot in the modified standings.

Rocky Warner finished second last Saturday, knocking six points off Chad Edwards' points lead in the sportsman division. Edwards now leads the division by 22 points over Warner, 768-746, while last week's feature winner, Chris Schaffer, is third with 718.

In the rookie sportsman division Dave Grace extended his points lead over Mike Jackson from four to 12 last week as mechanical trouble sent Jackson to the pits early and Grace drove to a fourth-place finish.

Two track championships at The Ridge are already in the books.

Rob VanAernam became the lone repeat champion this year as he cruised to a fourth place finish last week to secure his third-straight street stock championship. VanAernam claimed the Harry's Auto Street Stock Series by sweeping all three main events.

Chuck Wainright Jr. had the cruiser division title locked up when he hit the track last week. Keith Tesiero Jr., who picked up his first career win at The Ridge by less-than-a-bumper, entered the night tied with Keith Tesiero Sr. for the second spot. However, the win pushed him past his father, 622-606.

Saturday night will be the final race of the season at The Ridge and the final race at the track under promoters Mike Romano and Jake Spraker, who took over at the quarter-mile dirt track in 2007.

The street stocks will not run on the final race card, but the C.R.S.A. sprint cars will join the modifieds, sportsman, rookie sportsman and cruiser divisions.

The grandstand opens at 3:30 p.m. with hot laps taking to the track at 6:30 p.m. and racing slated to start at 7 p.m.

Classic Weekend

While coming from an area steeped in dirt track history, Otto Sitterly and Kreig Heroth have found their niche on the asphalt at Oswego Speedway.

Sitterly and Heroth respectively locked up the Supermodified and SBS track championships. Heroth raced to back-to-back feature wins in the final two points races for his first title, while Sitterly has won the Oswego super modified track championship five of the past seven years.

Sitterly also will be gunning for his second-straight victory in the prestigious 56th annual Budweiser International Classic this weekend at Oswego Speedway.



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