OSWEGO, NY (August 5) – In the 25 year history of the $10,000 to win Mr. Novelis Supermodified event at Oswego Speedway, three previous drivers had won their very first Oswego Supermodified main event in the high stakes spectacular. Saturday night, on a hot and slick ‘Steel Palace’ oval, young Kody Graham made it four behind the wheel of the Xtreme Chassis No. 21. Graham passed fellow up and coming pilot Michael Muldoon for the lead on lap 17, then held off the advances of Supermodified veterans Mike Barnes and Joe Gosek in a three car grudge match to collect the $10,000 pay day in the 75-lap special presented by Novelis.
Gene Lee Gibson (1987), Mike Muldoon (1988), and Tim Gareau (1997) were the original members of the Mr. Supermodified first time fraternity which Graham now joins. Standing in Chris Nelson Insurance Victory Lane at race’s end, Graham was asked if he ever thought it would happen.
“No, not at all,” said Graham, the 21 year old first time winner. “We went back to where the car was good, and it was tight the whole time until about lap 50 when it started getting sideways. I thought, well in a normal feature I would have had it, but I had to dig down deep and find something the last 25 laps.”
Graham, Barnes, and Gosek waged an epic battle over the final 25 laps of the race with Barnes in the No. 99 appearing to be the fastest car on the Speedway. Several times he made attempts on the Graham No. 21 but just couldn’t quite make the move stick.
“I was sideways,” said Graham. “I bumped into Mike on accident, and with all those lap cars I thought he’d get me then if he could, but he didn’t.”
Barnes dogged Graham for several laps and at lap 60 made his first charge at the point. Trying high and low, in traffic and out, and on lap 67 nearly lost the handle in the 4th turn giving Gosek the runner-up spot. Just one lap later, Barnes would pull pit side with overheating issues in the Strong Racing No. 99.
“Kody and I were racing really hard there,” said Barnes after the event. “We actually weren’t really all that good, the car was really loose. I got up alongside Kody there and he took me up high, which he has to do there, and I got all crossed up and Gosek got by me. The motor had been running hot the whole race to that point and I was trying my best to keep it cool, but right when Joe got by it was pegged at 240 so at that point we didn’t have a shot at $10,000 to fix it if I blew it up, so I just pulled it in.”
Gosek, who had finished second in the Mr. Novelis Supermodified five previous times (’88, ’89, ’91, ’06, ’11), would try his hand at Graham in the closing stages but was also unable to up-end the No. 21 on his way to victory.
Muldoon, Dave Gruel, Joey Payne, Otto Sitterly, Pat Lavery, Ray Graham, Brian Sobus, and Jeff Abold would complete the Top 10 runners at the conclusion of 75 laps.
Muldoon and Bobby Haynes Jr. would bring the Novelis Supermodified field down to the Cam’s NY Pizzeria green flag for the $10,000 to win Mr. Novelis Supermodified main event, with Muldoon edging out in front behind the wheel of the No. 50m.
Muldoon, as he has done a few different times in 2012, would immediately blast out to a sizeable lead in the early stages leaving Haynes, Jerry Curran, Kody Graham, and Gruel in his tire tracks. By lap 10, drivers running 2nd through 10th were in a tight freight train, and by lap 13 Muldoon jumped out to a half straightaway lead on the remainder of the field.
The race’s 15th circuit would see the first caution period of the race and this one was for Curran, who lost the handle out of turn four running inside of the Top 5 in the No. 24. During the caution the Gosek No. 00 was stopped at the flag stand to check for a possible leak, but Gosek was passed and allowed to rejoin the field.
At the restart Muldoon led Haynes, Graham, Gruel, and Stephen Gioia III to the green flag. At this point Barnes and Gosek rode just outside the Top 5, with championship leader Sitterly in 9th and two time defending Mr. Supermodified Ray Graham in 13th.
Graham would use the restart at lap 15 to begin his run at the lead, as he pulled to the low side of Haynes to take the runner-up spot coming to green. The No. 21 would quickly pull up to the back bumper of Muldoon and just two laps later again pulled low to take the top spot on the 17th circuit. From there, Graham jumped out to a healthy lead over Muldoon, Haynes, Gruel, and Gioia.
From laps 20-25 Barnes and Gosek began to position themselves within the Top 5.
In consecutive laps Barnes worked underneath both Gioia and Gruel to move into 4th, with Gosek following suit into the Top 5 positions. Each then began to work the Haynes No. 44, but another caution at lap 26 would impede their progress.
Shaun Gosselin and Dave Danzer would turn on the yellow lights in turn four. Gosselin was pushed away from the scene, while Danzer was hooked to the pit area. Each would be done for the night with finishes of 20th and 21st.
The restart order showed Graham, Muldoon, Haynes, Barnes, and Gosek now in the Top 5 ahead of Gruel, Gioia, Payne, Sitterly, and Lavery.
As the green flag waved yet again, Barnes and Gosek continued their pursuit.
Barnes worked low on Haynes into turn three on the restart to 3rd with Gosek making his way under Haynes in turn one on lap 30. From there, Barnes bested Muldoon to the low side in turn three on lap 31 showing the way for Gosek to make the move the following lap into turn three.
At the halfway point of the event the scoreboard now showed Graham, Barnes, and Gosek with a substantial lead over Muldoon, Haynes, Gruel, Gioia, Payne, and Sitterly.
As the Top 3 runner’s lead continued to grow over the rest of the field, the race’s final caution waved on lap 42.
Gioia and Payne were pitted in a heated battle for 7th when the two cars narrowly touched coming out of turn four. The Gioia No. 9 would lose traction as a result, spinning across the main straight, making contact with the inside hub rail. Gioia immediately climbed out of the car, walking to the pit area, while the new No. 9 was hooked to the pit area.
The Payne No. 20 was undamaged and continued on, now into the 7th position on the Speedway.
With 33 laps remaining at the restart, a true battle was shaping up for the top spot between Graham, Barnes, and Gosek. By lap 50 the Top 3 runners had built over a full straightaway lead on fourth running Muldoon, making it clear it would be a three horse race to the finish.
If that wasn’t enough, that full straight lead built to over a half a track by lap 60, with Graham clearly slowing slightly and Barnes beginning his charge.
Both Graham and Barnes were visibly loose, leaving Gosek to sit in the wake looking for an opening. Starting on lap 63 Barnes tried the high side on Graham in consecutive laps in turn three, trying to use the heavily building lapped machines as picks. But Graham used every inch of the track forcing Barnes out of the groove and too high, leaving the No. 99 unable to take the lead. On several occasions, Barnes was so high that Gosek gained looks to the low side, but he too was unable to make any headway.
Finally, on lap 67 Barnes appeared to have the pass made until he and Graham touched wheels out of turn four in traffic forcing Barnes to have to gather up his machine with a great save. That save however allowed Gosek to slip by for second, and just one lap later Barnes pulled pit side ending his night.
With five laps remaining Gosek now began to give the Graham No. 21 fits in lapped traffic, as each were in search of their first Mr. Novelis Supermodified crown. But as the laps ticked away it became evident that Gosek did not have enough to work to the high side of Graham was Barnes did, and it was clear that Graham was not going to leave the bottom side of the Speedway.
With that said, Graham would speed on to his first career Oswego Supermodified win worth a whopping $10,000 as he became the 14th different winner of the event in its 26 year history.
Gosek would be left to his 9th career Mr. Novelis Supermodified Top 5 finish, tying him with Greg Furlong all-time.
“We’ve got a good piece here, we were just off a little bit tonight,” said Gosek in post-race. “Congratulations to Kody, he ran where he needed to and he didn’t slip up when I got to him. I couldn’t get up to the outside; it was too slick out there, so I really couldn’t give him a run unless he slipped on the bottom.”
While Gosek was happy with another podium finish after destroying his No. 00 back in June, he was clearly dejected with his 6th career runner-up finish in the $10,000 event, which he has yet to win.
“We’re happy with 2nd but not tonight, we’ve done that too many times in this stupid race,” said Gosek. “Bridesmaid is no good tonight, but we’ve got a good car, and that is something to build on. We’ve got a great gang and a great team, I just wish we could have got it done tonight, it would have been a nice celebration after coming back.”
After leading the early portion of the event, Muldoon was happy to end another night on the podium in the No. 50m.
“The car went the complete opposite on us in the feature,” Muldoon said. “We thought it would be tight and instead it got really loose after about 15 laps, and it was pretty impossible to drive by the end of the race. I couldn’t compete with these two (Graham and Gosek), I had no chance, but I’m pretty happy. I really wanted to win, but we’ll take third, because with the car we had tonight I would not have expected a third anyways.”
The next event on Oswego Speedway’s schedule will be presented by C’s Beverage as well as Days Inn/Travelodge featuring a 50-lap Novelis Supermodified feature event, a 30-lap Pathfinder Bank SBS Series main as well as the Tobias SpeedSTR series coming next Saturday, August 11.
Racing will begin at 6:30pm with general admission pricing set a $17. Tickets are also available for this Saturday at any Price Chopper Supermarkets location for just $14. Kids 16 and under are FREE with paid adult, as well as any active Military with ID.
For more information on Oswego Speedway be sure to visit online at www.oswegospeedway.com. Fans can also like the Speedway on Facebook at www.facebook.com/OswegoSpeedway or follow on Twitter @OswegoSpeedway.
For tickets or merchandise call the Speedway box office at (315) 342-0646.
Saturday, August 4th, 2012
Mr. Novelis Supermodified 75 – Mr. Pathfinder Bank SBS 35
Saturday, August 11th – C’s Beverage Center/Days Inn-Travelodge Night
Feature (75-laps): 1. 21-Kody Graham, 2. 00-Joe Gosek, 3. 50m-Michael Muldoon, 4. 50-Dave Gruel, 5. 20-Joey Payne, 6. 7-Otto Sitterly, 7. 22-Pat Lavery, 8. 90-Ray Graham, 9. 60-Brian Sobus, 10. 05-Jeff Abold, 11. 0-Jarett Andretti, 12. 24-Jerry Curran, 13. 88-Randy Ritskes, 14. 15-Dave Shullick Jr., 15. 06-Dave Cliff, 16. 01-Dan Connors, 17. 44-Bobby Haynes Jr., 18. 99-Mike Barnes, 19. 9-Stephen Gioia III, 20. 26-Shaun Gosselin, 21. 52-Dave Danzer, 22. 81-Kelly Miller, 23. 56-Hal LaTulip, 24. 14-Joe Chillemi, 25. 02-Brandon Bellinger
1st Heat (12laps/6 Qualify): 1. 50m – Michael Muldoon, 2. 99 – Mike Barnes, 3. 50 – Dave Gruel, 4. 9 – Stephen Gioia III, 5. 90 – Ray Graham, 6. 60 – Brian Sobus, 7. 88 – Randy Ritskes, 8. 14 – Joe Chillemi, 9. 15 – Dave Shullick Jr.
2nd Heat (12laps/6 Qualify): 1. 00 – Joe Gosek, 2. 44 – Bobby Haynes Jr., 3. 7 – Otto Sitterly, 4. 20 – Joey Payne, 5. 05 – Jeff Abold, 6. 52 – Dave Danzer, 7. 81 – Kelly Miller, 8. 56 – Hal LaTulip
3rd Heat (12laps/6 Qualify): 1. 21 – Kody Graham, 2. 24 – Jerry Curran, 3. 22 – Pat Lavery, 4. 26 – Shaun Gosselin, 5. 01 – Dan Connors Jr., 6. 0 – Jarett Andretti, 7. 06 – Dave Cliff Jr., 8. 02 – Brandon Bellinger
PATHFINDER BANK SBS SERIES
Feature (35-laps): 1. 24-AJ Bernys, 2. 79-Tim Barbeau, 3. 98-Jason Simmons, 4. 2-Rob Pullen, 5. 26-Mike Bond, 6. 69-Mark Castiglia, 7. 04-Kreig Heroth, 8. 3-Chris Proud, 9. 91-Barry Kingsley, 10. 18-Andrew Schartner, 11. 47-Jon Tesoriero, 12. 93-JJ Andrews, 13. 01-Dalton Doyle, 14. 8-Josh Kerr, 15. 17-David LaTulip, 16. 5-Tim Gareau, 17. 22-Mike Bruce, 18. 87-Bryan Haynes, 19. 77-Cameron Rowe, 20. 9-Jack Patrick, 21. 1-Anthony Losurdo, 22. 99-Dennis Rupert, 23. 88-Brad Haynes, 24. 11-John Ketcham
1st Heat (10laps/All Qualify): 1. 04 – Kreig Heroth, 2. 77 – Cameron Rowe, 3. 01 – Dalton Doyle, 4. 26 – Mike Bond, 5. 8 – Josh Kerr, 6. 93 – JJ Andrews, 7. 88 – Brad Haynes, 8. 1 – Anthony Losurdo
2nd Heat (10laps/All Qualify): 1. 79 – Tim Barbeau, 2. 2 – Rob Pullen, 3. 9 – Jack Patrick, 4. 87 – Bryan Haynes, 5. 47 – Jon Tesoriero, 6. 91 – Barry Kingsley, 7. 5 – Tim Gareau, 8. 17 – David LaTulip
3rd Heat (10laps/All Qualify): 1. 24 – AJ Bernys, 2. 69 – Mark Castiglia, 3. 98 – Jason Simmons, 4. 22 – Mike Bruce, 5. 18 – Andrew Schartner, 6. 3 – Chris Proud, 7. 11 – John Ketcham, 8. 99 – Dennis Rupert
About Oswego Speedway: Oswego Speedway, a sports entertainment company, is a 5/8 mile semi-banked pavement racing oval located off the shores of Lake Ontario in scenic Oswego, NY. Oswego Speedway has been a continuously run weekly racing venue since August, 1951. The premier open-wheel pavement short track cars in the world, Supermodifieds, run weekly at Oswego Speedway making Oswego the only weekly Supermodified racing venue in the world. The Small Block Supermodifieds accompany the full blown Supers on a weekly Saturday night schedule which runs from May through September. Oswego Speedway is mentioned in racing circles as the “Indy of the East,” as no fewer than a dozen past and present competitors have competed at the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway including Mario Andretti, arguably the greatest driver of all time, two-time Indy 500 champion Gordon Johncock, along with former International Classic Champions Bentley Warren, Joe Gosek, and Davey Hamilton.
Oswego Speedway is honored to recognize several sponsors and corporate partners that help to bring the racing action to you each Saturday night (listed alphabetically): All Seasons Inn, Alliance Bank, Bacc Off, Best Western/Quality Inn, Blue Bowl Sanitation, Bonded Motor Sales, Bosco & Geers, Bracy’s Transmission Services, Bridge Street Jewelers, Brioschi Pharmaceuticals International LLC, Burke’s Home Centers, Burritt Motors, Butler Disposal, Canales Restaurant, Canales Insurance, Century 21 Galloway Realty, Chris Nelson Insurance, Cleaning for a Reason, City Electric, CNY CPR, Coca-Cola, Compass Federal Credit Union, Constellation Energy, Corr-Pak, CPS Electric, C’s Beverage Center, Davis Bros. Meats, Days Inn/Travelodge, Dufore’s Jewelers, Dunkin Donuts, Eagle Beverage, Ellsworth Heating and Cooling, Entergy Northeast, Ferris Industries, Gater Racing News, Green & Seifter CPA, G&I Homes, H. Lee White Marine Museum,Hofmann’s, GMAC Insurance, Gioia Signs, Hoosier Racing Tire, Hudson Dairy, Jerome Fire Equipment, Johnston’s Propane, John Costello & Associates, K&G Lodge, Lighthouse Lanes, Longley Dodge, Marollo Racing Engines, May’s Country Store, McCaffrey Chiropractic, Mickey’s Magical Vacation, Munski’s Auto and Marine, Novelis, Ontario Orchards, Oswego County Federal Credit Union, Oswego Health, Oswego Inn, OTB/Western Region, Oswego Quality Carpet, The Palladium-Times, Par-K Enterprises, Pathfinder Bank, Outdoor Power West, Performance Harley Davidson, Pizza Villa, Ponderosa, The Post-Standard, Precision Balancing, Press Box, Price Chopper, Pullen’s Plumbing, RE Davis and Son, RJ Caruso Tax & Accounting, Rudy’s Lakeside, S&S Tractor, Scriba Electric, Scriba Meats, Shapiro Motor Sales, Sharon’s Hair Gallery, Speedway Press, Steve Abt Auto, Stop DWI – Oswego County, Sunset RV Park, Supercuts, Terrell’s Potato Chips, Thunder Road Bar and Grill, Turning Stone Resort and Casino, Universal Metal Works, Vashaw’s Collision Service, Yogi Bear’s Jelly Stone Park