OHSWEKEN, Ont. (August 2, 2019) – Ohsweken Speedway resumed action following a one week break and kicked off the month of August with Insta-Panels Memorial Night on Friday, August 2. A total of 126 racecars signed into the pit area in four divisions for the night that featured the Brock Leonard and Art Hill Memorial races for the Insta-Panels Duel on the Dirt Thunder Stocks and Mini Stocks, respectively. The races were run in honour of Brock Leonard, a former Ohsweken track official who passed away eight years ago and in memory of Art Hill, the only driver to have lost his life in competition at Ohsweken.
When the final checkered flag of the night had waved, it was Brighton Speedway regular Justin Ramsay who claimed his first career Ohsweken win in the 50-lap Brock Leonard Memorial for the Thunder Stocks in the Insta-Panels Duel on the Dirt Series. Tyler Lafantasie led the entire second half of the 42-lap Art Hill Memorial to score a Duel on the Dirt Mini Stock Series victory. Nick Sheridan picked up his second win of the season with the Strickland’s Brantford Chevrolet Crate Sprint Cars and Brad Rouse scored a win with the Race of Champions Sportsman.
Insta-Panels Duel on the Dirt Thunder Stocks
Ken Sargent and Justin Ramsay started on the front row for the 50-lap Brock Leonard Memorial in the Insta-Panels Duel on the Dirt Series Combined race. Sargent paced the field early on with Ramsay and Ryan Beagle in tow. Following the second caution of the race on lap nine, Beagle moved past Ramsay into second and Ramsay slipped back to fourth off a lap 18 restart when Jason Fontaine drove his Burger Barn No.21 into the top three.
On lap 26, Beagle caught and passed Sargent to take over the top spot. Behind the top two, Ramsay worked in tandem with Blake Bomberry Jr. to take third and fourth, respectively as Fontaine was shuffled back to fifth. Over the next eight laps, Ramsay seemingly found another gear his No.03 as he wheeled past Bomberry and Sargent and began tracking down Beagle.
On lap 35, Ramsay made a move to the outside to get passed Beagle and grabbed the lead just before the caution flag waved. After a pair of restarts, Ramsay and Beagle battled side-by-side, with the latter using the bottom late while Ramsay worked against the small cushion at the top of the groove. Over the final 10 laps, Ramsay built a lead of a half straightaway over Beagle and eventually managed to put several lapped cars between he and his closest challenger on the way to his first career Ohsweken win.
Beagle, who was the 2017 winner of the event, settled for second while Bomberry claimed a well-deserved third-place finish. Dave Bailey and Logan Shwedyk, who was forced to pit early in the race, rounded out the top-five. Wade Purchase, Dave Bailey, Bill Bleich and Ramsay won their qualifying heat races to start the night while Trevor DeBoer and Donny Lampman won B-Mains.
Insta-Panels Duel on the Dirt Mini Stocks
Mike Sarantakos and Ryan Hillar paced the field to the green flag for the 42-lap Art Hill Memorial for the Insta-Panels Duel on the Dirt Series Combined race. After a pair of cautions with only one lap completed, Ryan Hillar was able to grab the early lead in his No.21h while Kyle Wert quickly raced into second. On the move behind them though was ninth-starting Tyler Lafantasie, who by lap 11 had caught Hillar for the race lead following a tough battle with Wert for second.
At lap 16, Lafantasie made an inside move to try and take the lead from Hillar, but the momentum up top was enough for the driver of the No.21h to retain the top spot. For the next five laps, the two drivers race side-by-side until Lafantasie emerged with the lead on lap 22. A caution on lap 25 produced another exciting restart with Hillar refusing to back down until he fell victim to a flat right-front tire during the final caution of the race on lap 34. Over the final eight laps, Lafantasie opened a convincing lead and drove to take the checkered flag and $1,000 winner’s prize. Wert, Dusty DeBoer, Tristan Da Silva and Tim Nuell rounded out the top-five.
Dusty DeBoer, Hillar, Tim DeBoer and Wert won their qualifying heats to begin the nights while Steve Miller and Paul Longboat won B-Mains.
Strickland’s Brantford Chevrolet Crate Sprint Cars
Nick Sheridan and Lucas Smith brought the Action Sprint Tour Feature to the line for the green flag. The two drivers who entered the night fourth and third, respectively, in the championship standings did not disappoint. While Sheridan had the pole, it was Smith who jumped out to the early lead in the faster outside groove. On lap two, the two drivers nearly made contact at the exit of turn four when Smith slide up in front of Sheridan, but both drivers continued.
A pair of cautions on laps four and five slowed the race briefly before Smith resumed his lead out front while Dereck Lemyre, Paul Klager and 15th-starting Jesse Costa raced inside the top-five. At the halfway point, Costa had found his way to third and the top three broke away from the rest of the field. With six laps to go, Smith found his way into thick lapped traffic and was forced to make a tough decision to get past the slower cars. Sheridan meanwhile erased all of Smith’s lead as he was held up and then on lap 15 when Smith chose the bottom lane, Sheridan drove to the outside and took the lead off turn four.
Sheridan, a Mount Brydges, Ont. native who just graduated eighth grade, then drove the final five laps to score his first trip to Mister Transmission Victory Lane. It was Sheridan’s second official win on the season after he was credited with a victory on June 14 following a disqualification in post-race technical inspection. Smith held on for a second-place finish while Costa earned the hard-charged award with a third-place result and assumes the point lead in the championship standings after entering the night tied for first with Steven Beckett, who finished 13th.
Klager, Hannah Ferrell, Allan Downey and Smith scored victories in the qualifying heats earlier in the night. Jeremy Hughes and Liam Martin claimed B-Main victories.
Race of Champions Sportsman
The Race of Champions Sportsman 25-lap feature was the Brad Rouse show. The driver of the No.18r started on the front row and led all 25 laps to score the victory. Initially, Rouse opened a 15-car length lead while Adam Leslie and James Michael Friesen engaged in a thorough battle for second behind him. Eventually, Friesen claimed the runner-up spot and began to run down the leader.
Rouse had proven quick in the outside groove while Friesen made gains running on the very bottom of the track. With just four laps to go, Friesen caught Rouse and showed the nose to his inside in a battle for the lead. That prompted Rouse to quickly change lanes and take the bottom groove, breaking Friesen’s momentum and allowing him to drive off with his fifth career Ohsweken win. Friesen settled for second while Chad Chevalier, Leslie and Jordan Cosco rounded out the top-five.
Rouse and Friesen also scored heat race victories. Leslie was the overall fastest qualifier in time trials with a lap 17.117 seconds.
Up Next at Ohsweken Speedway
Ohsweken Speedway resumes its normal Friday Night Excitement schedule on Friday, August 10 when the Kool Kidz-Corr/Pak 360 Sprint Cars return to action on Renway Energy Christmas in August night. The Strickland’s Brantford Chevrolet, Middleport Mechanical Thunder Stocks and HRW Automotive Mini Stocks will all be in action as well.
As part of the track’s annual Christmas in July night, fans are encouraged to bring a new, unwrapped toy to help support underprivileged children at Christmastime. Santa Claus will be on hand at the track to help collect all purchased toys. Race time is 7:30pm and adult admission is just $14 and children 12 and under are $3 or less. For additional event information, visit www.ohswekenspeedway.ca.
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About MavTV Canada’s All North Racing Powered by Pinty’s
Ohsweken Speedway is excited to announce its Friday Night Excitement racing will be the centerpiece of a new international television broadcast on MavTV Canada called All North Racing powered by Pinty’s. All North Racing will visit Ohsweken for six live broadcasts that will be re-aired multiple times in Canada and the United States. The MavTV broadcasts are scheduled for May 31, June 21, July 22, July 23, August 30 and September 14. These broadcasts include both nights of the Northern Summer Nationals featuring Tony Stewart, Christopher Bell and Rico Abreu as well as the 15th annual Canadian Sprint Car Nationals. For more information on MavTV Canada, visit www.facebook.com/MAVTVCanada.
Ohsweken Speedway Live Stream
Can’t make it to the track or don’t live within driving distance? No problem! Check out all of Ohsweken’s weekly Friday Night Excitement action live online for free via the Ohsweken Speedway Live Stream. The stream goes live at 7:30pm EST each race night at www.OhswekenSpeedway.ca and on our official Facebook page.
Ohsweken Speedway’s 24th season of weekly Friday Night Excitement features four divisions of racing, including the Kool Kidz-Corr/Pak 360 Sprint Cars, Strickland’s GMC Crate Sprint Cars, Middleport Mechanical Thunder Stocks and HRW Automotive Mini Stocks. Visit www.OhswekenSpeedway.com or call (519) 717-0023 for more information.
About Ohsweken Speedway: Founded in 1996, Ohsweken Speedway is a motorsports complex which includes a 3/8 (0.375) mile clay oval track. The facility is owned by the Styres family, and located in the village of Ohsweken, Ontario, Canada. Ohsweken’s weekly Friday night racing program runs from May to September each year, featuring 360 Sprint Cars, Crate Sprint Cars, Thunder Stocks and Mini Stocks. The season finishes each year with the track’ annual Canadian Sprint Car Nationals. Ohsweken Speedway also hosts weekly Micro Sprint racing on Thursday nights.
OHSWEKEN SPEEDWAY MEDIA
Phone: (519) 717-0023
Ohsweken Speedway thanks the following partners for their support: Ackland Insurance, Arrow Express, Auto Parts Centres, Bradshaw Brothers Fuels, Burger Barn, Case IH O’Neil’s Farm Equipment, Core-Mark International, Corr/Pak Merchandising Inc., Creative Edge Signs & Graphics, EPIC Racewear, Gale’s Auto Aftermarket, Grisdale Racing Products, Hoosier Tire Canada, HRW Automotive, Insta-Insulation/Insta-Panels, Jibs Action Sports, Kool Kidz Ice & Water, McDonald’s Restaurants of Paris & Brantford, Middleport Mechanical, Miska Trailer Factory, Nitro 54 Variety/Club 54 Racing, Pinty’s Delicious Foods, Renway Energy, Rochester Knighthawks, Strickland’s GMC and Victory Gamez.