“Tony Hanbury Ends 3-Year Drought, Dominates Sunoco Modifieds at Chemung; Sparks Fly in Supers”

by Carol Houssock

(Chemung, NY) When three of your five divisions run caution-free features it makes for a quick night and that was the case at Chemung Speedrome on Friday. When a driver finds victory lane after a drought it makes for a burnout on the front stretch all the more meaningful. Such was the case for Tony Hanbury, who swept the action in the headline Sunoco Modified division. Other winners included Lee Sharpsteen (Insinger Super Stocks), Monica Robinson (4 Cylinders), Josh Parker (Marion Decker Agency Hobby Stocks), and Derrick Vogler (INEX Bandoleros). Racing continues this Friday night, and Veterans with an ID will be admitted free as Chemung salutes all of our Veterans.

Service Machine & Tool had posted an additional $400 to the winner of the 40-lap Sunoco Modified feature, bringing the winner’s share to $1,200. Tony Hanbury and Bryan Sherwood were strong in their heats and picked up wins that put them in the front row for the start. Zack Curren, who had started fourth, made some great moves and ran second on the opening lap. TJ Potrzebowski advanced from fifth to third by the fifth lap and the trio pulled away from Sherwood and Zach Knowlden. Hanbury, with a clear track in front of him and a powerful motor underneath his #42, began to put distance between himself and that battle behind him for second. Curren held the spot for several laps but just past the halfway point Potrzebowski took over second. On lap 32 Knowlden got to the inside of Curren and he was up to third. With five laps to go Hanbury was solidly in front but the gap between him and Potrzebowski had lessened. Hanbury scored the win, his first at Chemung in nearly three years. Despite a national Hoosier tire shortage, he lit his up and did a burnout before pulling in to the Midstate Basement Authorities victory lane following a dominating performance in a caution-free race. He thanked Service Machine & Tool for the extra money, his crew and sponsors. “I was running hard, but I didn’t feel anybody near me,” he said. Then he made a special dedication. “Thanks to Gary and Rianna Noe, but I’m dedicating it to their new daughter, Dalila.” Good runs by Potrzebowski and Knowlden were negated when both of their cars failed post-race tech. That moved Curren to second, followed by Sherwood and Charlie Sharpsteen.

Caution flags. Called-off restarts. Rough riding. Black flags. That pretty much sums up what took place in the Insinger Performance Street Stock 25-lap feature. Lee Sharpsteen survived all that, and more, to record his second win of the year. Handicapping put Frank Chapman and Garrett Zacharias in row one for the start and Zacharias led the way. Sharpsteen wasted little time working his way up to second and restarted alongside Zacharias after cautions with less than ten laps recorded. Sharpsteen waited and took over the lead on lap 14. It was then that a series of events took place, including sloppy restarts. With Sharpsteen in command, Zacharias was inches behind, or less at times. That’s when Chapman and RJ Zacharias swapped paint several times and it culminated as they came off turn four and worked their way down the front stretch. With sparks flying and both cars spinning in turn one, track officials gave both the black flag, and they were done for the night. Up front the drama continued between Sharpsteen and Zacharias. A rough driving, two-position penalty, assessed against Zacharias, relegated him to fourth on the final restart. Sharpsteen held off Nick Robinson for the win, with Tim Gullo, G. Zacharias and Cameron Nichols all in the top five at the finish. “We did our homework and kept digging. Racing at this place is fun,” Sharpsteen stated. It was a sweep for him as he, Gullo and G. Zacharias won heats.

Monica Robinson, who has said that she’s having more fun this year than ever before, needed a broom Friday night after her sweep in the 4 Cylinder division. From her outside pole starting position, she led the way from the get-go and never looked back. She pulled away and left behind a tight battle for second between her teammates Greg Moldt and Zack Jaynes. With this one staying caution-free and with Robison’s lead increasing as the laps clicked off, there was little anyone could do to change the outcome on this night. Robinson sailed across the finish line and scored her second win of the season. Jaynes did pass Moldt for second, followed by Joey Bevacqua and Mike Harris.

“Went the wrong way on an adjustment but my Uncle Gene helped out and got it back where it needed to be,” Josh Parker said following his third win in the Marion Decker Agency Hobby Stock division. Their 20-lap feature also ran caution-free and boiled down to a two-man race between Parker and Chuck Nichols. Both had won two features coming in to this one and each was hoping for racing’s ‘hat trick’. “I have to thank Dave Decker, who loaned me some parts,” Parker added about the sportsmanship among racers in this growing division. Newcomer Genevieve Yamelski finished third, followed by Tyler Harbst and Decker.

Derrick Vogler continued his winning ways in the INEX Bandolero division with a sweep of the action. He and fellow Outlaw Kalysta DeMark won their heats, and she provided his closest competition in their 10-lap feature. The race was slowed just once for a caution four laps in. Over the remaining six laps Vogler pulled away to a comfortable advantage and held on for his fourth win. “I kept it smooth, clean and green,” he told the crowd. Chase Sinsabaugh, who finished third behind DeMark, was the top-finisher in the Bandit age group.

This Friday night Chemung thanks Veterans who provide an ID with free admission for their selfless service. Drivers in the Sunoco Modified division will run race #2 in the Buckley’s Automotive B Mod Challenge, a special 4-race series that offers more prize money for the 40-lap race, and the series will crown its own champion in August. Zach Knowlden won the first race but enters race #2 in a tie with Tony Hanbury. Joining them Friday night are the Insinger Performance Super Stocks (25 laps), 4 Cylinders (20 laps), the Marion Decker Agency Hobby Stocks (20 laps) and the INEX Bandoleros (10 laps). Pit gates open at 4 PM, grandstand gate at 5, practice at 6 and racing at 7. Admission is $13 for adults, $10 for seniors, $5 for kids ages 6-12 and free for kids 5 and under.

For information, log on to the track’s website: chemung-speedrome.com, ‘like’ us on Facebook: Chemung Speedrome – Racing at the Drome, or call Ray Hodge, Promoter, at 607-483-3468.

Of Note:
A Hanbury family member won the $500 50/50/ winner’s share, doubling the family’s winning ways.
Matt Lewis from WEBO and Choice 102 was on hand and provided several live updates throughout the evening.

Service Machine & Tool Night Results June 4th 2021

Sunoco Modifieds (40 Laps): TONY HANBURY, Zack Curren, Bryan Sherwood, Charlie Sharpsteen, Teddy Bowen, Bill Chandler, Jr., Gary Noe, TJ Potrzebowski (DQ, 2nd), Zack Knowlden (DQ, 3rd)
Heats: Hanbury, Sherwood

Insinger Performance Super Stocks (25 Laps): LEE SHARPSTEEN, Nick Robinson, Tim Gullo, Garrett Zacharias, Cameron Nichols, Jim House, DJ Shaw, Robert Fink, Jason Duke, Sr., Derrick Tarbox, Frank Petroski, Jason Duke, Jr., Aaron Cornell, Gil Sharpsteen, Nate Peckham, Chad Lane, Gary Noe, Frank Chapman (DQ), RJ Zacharias (DQ)
Heats: L. Sharpsteen, Gullo, G. Zacharias

4 Cylinders (20 Laps): MONICA ROBINSON, Zack Jaynes, Greg Moldt, Joey Bevacqua, Mike Ferris, Dustin Pruyne, Jason Peck, Matt Jenkins, Ricky Lane, Nick Bevacqua (DNS)
Heats: Moldt, Robinson

Marion Decker Hobby Stocks (20 Laps): JOSH PARKER, Chuck Nichols, Genevieve Yamelski, Tyler Harbst, Dave Decker, Jim Hollister
Heat: Nichols

INEX Bandoleros (10 Laps): DERRICK VOGLER (Outlaw), Kalysta DeMark, Chase Sinsabaugh, Cullen Sharpsteen, Michael Bast, Joey Attowatt, Devin Gullo
Heats: Vogler, DeMark

Pictures from Emily Knowlden Photography

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