WALL TOWNSHIP, N.J. ~ If the overflowing number of cars that were in the Wall Stadium Speedway pit area for the two pre-race practice sessions are any indication, the 43rd running of the Turkey Derby stock car classic at Wall Stadium Speedway could feature a record setting field in both quality and quantity. The event is presented on Friday, Saturday and Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend during the daylight hours.
Among the Tour Type Modified standouts expressing interest in the annual classic are Matt Hirschman of Northampton, Pa., Jackson’s Steven Reed, Austin Kochenash of Danielsville, Pa., Dave Sapienza of Riverhead, N.Y., Howell speedster Eric Mauriello, Shaun Carrig of Little Falls, Les Hinkley of Windsor Locks, Ct., Holmdel’s Andrew Krause, Earl Paules of Palmertown, Pa. and Long Island racers Amber Fortin and Kenny Darch. Also planning to compete in Tour Type Modified action are Matawan’s Anthony Sesely, Jamie Tomaino of Howell, Brick’s Ron Frees, Tommy Catalano of Ontario, N.Y., Howell’s Jimmy Blewett, John Markovic of Bethlehem, Pa., Jonathan Mandato of Toms River and Freehold’s Chas Okerson. More entries are expected during the final two days leading up to the race.
The speedway’s own Downs Ford Modifieds will also be well represented by both local favorites and invaders. Ken Matlach of New Hyde Park, N.Y., Jason Hearne of New Egypt, Brick’s Marc Rogers, Dennis Perry of Pawcatwak, Ct., Derek Stachecki of South Harbor, N.Y., Buffalo, N.Y.’s Andy Jankowiak, Mike Benevides of Westerly, R.I., Howell’s Chris Lane, Derek Hopkinson of Toms River, Wall’s Jack Ely, Ricky Collins of Willow Grove, Pa. and Keith Rocco of Norwalk, Ct. are all reportedly planning to compete in the Wall Modified 100-lap feature. Howell’s Chris Reynolds, brothers Zack and Trevor Alspach, both of Willingboro, Shawna Ingraham of Brick, Adam LaCicero of Lavallette, Jackson’s Jason Treat and Manasquan’s Kenny Van Wickle also plan to be in the field.
Reed, Okerson, Sesely, Krause, Hirschman, Blewett, Mauriello, Carrig and Mandato are among those contemplating competition in both pavement type Modified races. In fact, both Blewett and Krause plan extra duty as they are also planning to compete in the Dirt Modified feature race. A healthy field of Dirt Modifieds has practiced during the two tune-up sessions.
In fact, each division that will compete in Turkey Derby action was well represented at both practice sessions indicating that large fields will be on hand for every class.
On Friday, November 25, day one of Turkey Derby, pit area gates will open at 6:30 a.m., practice will begin at 8:30 a.m. and grandstand seating will open at 9:30 a.m. Qualifying is set for 12:15 p.m. with feature racing scheduled to start at 2:00 p.m. The Snap-on Sportsman cars will compete in a 50-lap main event, the Elite Maintenance Limited Late Models will battle in a 50-lapper, the O’Shea’s Auto Repair Factory Stocks and the Surf Side Collision 4 Cylinder Stocks will each battle in 40-lap races.
On Saturday, November 26, the pit area will again open at 6:30 a.m. with practice at 8:30 a.m. and grandstands opening at 9:30 a.m. Qualifying will start at 11:00 a.m. with main events set for 1:00 p.m. The Tour Type Modifieds are set for a 150-lap, $5,000 to win feature race while the speedway’s Down Ford Modifieds will compete in a 100-lap feature race that offers $4,000 to the winner. Dirt Modifieds will also be on the Saturday card in a 50-lap feature and the Green Flag Driving Experience Legends cars will compete in a 30-lapper. The TQ Midgets will race on the inner oval in a 30-lap race.
The Turkey Derby weekend will then wrap up on Sunday, November 27, with pit gates opening at 10:00 a.m., practice starting at 11:00 a.m., qualifying at noon and main events set for 1:00 p.m. The Legend Cars will be competing in a 40-lapper and the Factory Stocks will race in a 50-lapper. The 4 Cylinder Stocks are set for a 75-lapper on Sunday while the Dirt Outlaw Stocks and the Dirt Sportsman cars have been added this season in 25-lap main events. A Demolition Derby will cap off Sunday’s action.
Among special awards offered for the weekend will be the Larsen Brothers Memorial Fast Time Award for both the Tour and Wall Modified divisions. The fast qualifier in each division will pocket $200.
Aspecial commemorative Turkey Derby 43 sweatshirt will be available during the weekend and fans are reminded to bring small headset type radios to listen to the live call of the race events over the track’s 90.1 FM frequency. Campers are welcome but they are urged to call the speedway office prior to the event to make mandatory reservations.
Turkey Derby rules, registration forms, ticket purchase forms and more detailed information are all available on the speedway website at wallspeedwayracing.com.
Wall Stadium Speedway is located on Route 34 in Wall Township, N.J., just one mile north of Garden State Parkway exit 98 and Interstate 195 exit 35B. The speedway hotline number is 732-681-6400 and email address is CKMotorsports@aol.com.