OSWEGO, NY (August 19) - Kreig Heroth trailed Mike Bond by 37 points in the battle for the Oswego Speedway Pathfinder Bank Small Block Super championship just two weeks ago. After sweeping both a heat race win and feature win on August 11, Heroth was back for more on Saturday night at the Steel Palace. Once again, driving the Soucy No. 04, Heroth charged on to a heat race win and went on to pass Cameron Rowe on lap 10 of the main event to claim back to back wins and overcome Bond for his first career SBS track championship at Oswego Speedway.
Heroth’s win was the fifth of his career at Oswego, but more importantly for Heroth was Bond’s fifth place feature finish which handed Heroth the title by just six championship points.
“Holy cow, I don’t know what to say,” said Heroth to Danny Johnson in Chris Nelson Insurance Victory Lane. “The car was wicked good and I came in after the heat and we started changing a bunch of stuff and car owner Doug Soucy says ‘man, what are you doing? You’re going to kill yourself before we start.’ I knew if we could get the car snug enough we would be good off the top at the start and we did exactly what we had to do and these guys just put a hell of a racecar under me every week.”
Russ Brown, driving a brand new Ray Hedger Fabrication chassis, came on strong at the end of the feature to nearly squeeze passed Heroth for the win at the line. Jack Patrick, Rowe, and Bond completed the Top 5 positions.
Rowe would jump out into the early lead driving the No. 77, but it was Heroth who was on the move early on from deep in the field to take the fifth position by the end of the first lap. With Heroth running fifth, Bond was mired back in 11th after three circuits as the race seemed to play right into the hands of Heroth in the battle for the championship.
Lap four saw Heroth work passed 2012 Rookie of the Year Jon Tesoriero for third in turn three and only two laps later Bond worked high around hard chargers Andrew Schartner and Tim Barbeau to try and gain valuable ground.
A debris caution on the back straight at lap six bunched the field with Rowe leading Patrick, Heroth, Tesoriero, David LaTulip, JJ Andrews, Brown, Jason Simmons, Bond, and Mark Castiglia.
On the restart both Brown and Simmons found room to get by Andrews, who was slipping through the field in the No. 93. Just moments later up front, Heroth dove under Patrick for second and one lap later did the same to Rowe for the top spot into turn one on lap 10.
At this juncture Heroth, Rowe, Patrick, and Brown had a commanding lead on the rest of the field with Tesoriero, LaTulip, Bond, Simmons, Andrews, Schartner, and Castiglia all in tow further back.
Andrews, who lost several spots in just a few laps, brought out the race’s next caution on lap 12 spinning into the inside hub rail trying to find racing room to the inside of a slowing LaTulip in the No. 17. Josh Kerr and Rob Pullen were also involved, as all three cars rejoined the race.
As the race restarted Bond could clearly see Heroth as the race leader, forcing the No. 26 to begin an all-out assault on the field if he wanted to secure the championship. Unfortunately for Bond, after working passed Tesoriero on lap 14 to get into fifth, his assault would stall out.
Up front Patrick and Brown had teamed up to try and work further into the Top 5 and on lap 19 each made their way passed Rowe to move to second and third in the order. Eventually Brown would move under Patrick as well to slide into second at lap 26.
With four laps to go it looked as though Heroth would be on to an easy win over fellow Hedger runner Brown. However, lapped traffic played a huge role in the final two laps, allowing Brown to close right on the back bumper of Heroth out of turn four. As the two came to the line Heroth edge Brown by just .103 seconds for the win and the championship.
Had Brown snuck passed Heroth at the line, dropping the No. 04 to second, Heroth and Bond would have been co-SBS champions.
Chasing Heroth and Brown across the line were Patrick, Rowe, and Bond in the Top 5 ahead of Simmons, Schartner, Tesoriero, Castiglia, and LaTulip in the Top 10 order.
“The car is pretty good, it’s a brand new car, and we are just here testing for Classic,” said Brown, who returns to Oswego for the second time this season. “The car is a whole new design, we changed some stuff to try and get these guys faster. I don’t know, it is off a little bit, but it is fast, it’s a good racecar. All in all it was a good night, good test session, and hoping for more at Classic Weekend.”
Jack Patrick was once again on the podium in the No. 9.
“We finally got the car running good here at the end of the year,” said Patrick. “It’s been a rough year, but we finally got the car running pretty good. We thought we could have had one tonight but Kreig beat us to the front, obviously he was a little hungrier than us tonight. We’ll be back for Classic and hopefully get a win here.”
Next on tap at Oswego Speedway is the NEMA Midget, NEMA Lite, and US Legends Car special coming up on Saturday, August 25. Racing will begin at 6:30pm.
Saturday, August 18th, 2012
Bosco and Geers/Oswego County Federal Credit Union Track Championship Night
August 25th – NEMA Midgets, NEMA Lites, US Legends Cars
PATHFINDER BANK SBS SERIES
Feature (30-laps): 1. 04 – Kreig Heroth, 2. 13 – Russ Brown, 3. 9 – Jack Patrick, 4. 77 – Cameron Rowe, 5. 26 – Mike Bond, 6. 98 – Jason Simmons, 7. 18 – Andrew Schartner, 8. 47 – Jon Tesoriero, 9. 69 – Mark Castiglia, 10. 17 – David LaTulip, 11. 24 – AJ Bernys, 12. 01 – Dalton Doyle, 13. 93 – JJ Andrews, 14. 91 – Barry Kingsley, 15. 8 – Josh Kerr, 16. 2 – Rob Pullen, 17. 1 – Anthony Losurdo, 18. 44 – Justin Connell, 19. 87 – Bryan Haynes, 20. 65 – Kevin Jackson, 21. 79 – Tim Barbeau, 22. 95 – Lou LeVea Jr., 23. 99 – Dennis Rupert, 24. 88 – Dave Danzer
(Kreig Heroth earns 1st Pathfinder Bank SBS Series championship, defeating Mike Bond by six points)
1st Heat (10laps): 1. 04 – Kreig Heroth, 2. 98 – Jason Simmons, 3. 17 – David LaTulip, 4. 69 – Mark Castiglia, 5. 13 – Russ Brown, 6. 8 – Josh Kerr, 7. 87 – Bryan Haynes, 8. 88 – Dave Danzer
2ndHeat (10laps): 1. 26 – Mike Bond, 2. 47 – Jon Tesoriero, 3. 93 – JJ Andrews, 4. 2 – Rob Pullen, 5. 1 – Anthony Losurdo, 6. 95 – Lou LeVea Jr., 7. 44 – Justin Connell, 8. 65 – Kevin Jackson
3rd Heat (10laps): 1. 9 – Jack Patrick, 2. 77 – Cameron Rowe, 3. 79 – Tim Barbeau, 4. 18 – Andrew Schartner, 5. 24 – AJ Bernys, 6. 91 – Barry Kingsley, 7. 01 – Dalton Doyle, 8. 99 – Dennis Rupert