Earl Paules, Paul Koehler Jr., Zach Graver, Ricky Yetter, Cody Kohler and Cody Geist Honored as 2015 Track Champions at Mahoning Valley Speedway Awards Banquet

By DINO OBERTO

(NORTHAMPTON, Pa. 11-5-15) Mahoning Valley Speedway division champions, drivers, teams, fans and staff gathered on Saturday evening to celebrate the 2015 season which was held at the Northampton Community Center in Northampton.

While the focus was centered on the six class titleholders, drivers from the top 10 in each class also got their just rewards in terms of point fund money and trophies. There were also numerous special awards presented to deserving individuals.

Modified and Late Model titlists Earl Paules and Paul Koehler Jr., can certainly be considered the benchmark of champions. Between them they have nine Mahoning Valley championships and combined for nearly 150 feature wins.

Journeyman Dirt Modified driver Ricky Yetter vowed that with this being his final season of racing he was going all out as a champion. A tall order indeed but Yetter was a man of his word.

Zach Graver – Street Stocks, Cody Kohler – Pro 4 and Cody Geist – Hobby Stock, are the future of racing at Mahoning Valley. Each notched what could easily be the first of many more championships for this very talented group.

Paules’ title came on the heels of one of the closest point battles in years as five drivers went into the final race with hopes of securing the number one ranking. Runner-up Austin Kochenash was the one driver with the best shot of unseating Paules and he came oh-so-close, winning the final event but when Paules finished in fourth, which was his class leading 16th top-5, it was all he needed to claim his second Mahoning Modified title and fifth overall in the past four years.

The Late Model division was to a tale of two drivers. Koehler and Mike Sweeney. They would rack up 17 feature wins, seven going to Koehler. The real difference was eight runner-ups to Koehler as compared to three for Sweeney that helped cinch his fourth career title. Koehler also added to his all-time Late Model win list, taking the mark up to 47.

Since coming to race on Mahoning’s pavement in 2012 Yetter has been one of the stars of the Lehighton ¼-mile oval. He has also been in some of the close point bouts as well. This year he made it known that win, loose of draw, 2015 would be his final season of racing.

Everyone, including Yetter, knew that settling for anything less than number one would be an unfulfilling ending to a great career.

Yetter would start out the year winning his heat race and take the point lead with it. From that point on there was no looking back. He stayed atop the points for 20 consecutive weeks and in the process won a class leading seven times including a record four in a row. He capped off the year by winning the Octoberfast 50 lapper for a second straight time.

Mahoning Valley’s Street Stock division is arguably one of the best support classes in short track racing. Full fields every week and 19 different winners in 2015 can attest to that.

However, for the second time in as many years the point champion was not among the victors. None the less Graver put up a whale of a dogfight with runner-up Randy Schlenker, who was also win-less. Despite that they brought there title fight right down to the last lap of the last race. Graver would beat Schlenker by one spot in the final feature and it was just enough to garner his career first championship, a well-earned and deserving one at that.

Kohler won the Pro 4 title on the strength of three wins and 18 top-5s in 21 starts. He edged veteran Bobby Kibler Sr., by less than 20 points. He finished ever race in the top-10.

There is no doubt that 17-year old Kohler has made his mark as one of the rising stars of Mahoning Valley Speedway. In a short period of time he has matured into a well-polished stock car driver and can look forward to more wins and titles.

The Hobby Stocks finished out there third year of existence and by far the most competitive as a record nine different drivers visited Victory Lane and five different drivers led the standings.

Champion Cody Geist was one of them and although his older brother, Shayne Geist, led the way with five wins, it was the consistency by C. Geist that enabled him the bring another championship into the Guest household and follow in the footsteps of his famous dad, “Hollywood” Todd Geist.

  1. Geist had an unprecedented 18 top-5 and 20 top-10s in 21 starts. By reeling off finishes of fifth or better over the final half dozen events, it was the key to beating out his brother and everyone else in a most commendable effort.

Two special series events where held this past season. The Central States Modified Gamblers Series and the American Rental Street Stock Gamblers Series. Run under a poker card format, select races where held in which drivers earned cards and then tallied the best hand.

Eric Kocher reaped in $2000 for the Modifieds while veteran Street Stock campaigner Todd Ahner collected $800 for his winning hand.

Rookie of the Year honors where bestowed upon Paul Frantz, Broc Brown, Cory Edelman, Lorin Arthofer II, Johnny Bennett and Kyle Krempasky in the Modifieds, Late Models, Street Stocks, Dirt Mods, Pro 4s and Hobby Stocks respectively.

Most Improved Driver awards went to Jacob Kerstetter – Late Model, Gene Bowers – Street Stock, Ray Deemer – Dirt Mod, Cody Kohler – Pro 4 and Shayne Geist – Hobby Stock.

S & D Bodyline sponsored the Best Appearing Car Award. In the Modifieds it was the No. 01 of Kris Graver. The No. 98 of Jeremy Miller in Late Models. TJ Gursky’s No. 19 in Street Stock. The No. 615 Dirt Mod of Dave Gorbatuk. Nick Baer, Pro 4 No. 41 and the No. 19 Hobby Stock of Kyle Krempasky.

Checkered Flag Fan Club Vice President and Mahoning’s Chief Starter Bobby Stull presented race director Tim Santee with the club’s Service Appreciation Award.

Mahoning Valley Speedway has set Saturday, April 9, 2016 as its season opener which will feature a Race of Champions Tour event as the lid-lifter.

Oswego Speedway’s 59th annual International Classic to Air Nationally on MAVTV Thanksgiving Night

 

OSWEGO, NY (November 23, 2015) – For the second consecutive year Oswego Speedway’s prestigious Budweiser International Classic 200 for Novelis Supermodifieds will air nationally on Suzuki presents SPEED SPORT on MAVTV this Thursday, November 26 at 4:00 & 7:00 p.m. ET/PT.

The one hour broadcast, featuring the world’s most unique open-wheel short track racecars and the richest race in the world of Supermodified racing, will display 34 of the best open-wheel drivers in the country battling for 200-laps and a total purse of over $100,000.

The 59th annual International Classic broadcast will be led in the analyst’s booth by motorsports broadcasting veterans Ralph Sheheen and Derek Pernesiglio.

Oswego Speedway Public Relations Director and former Novelis Supermodified driver Dan Kapuscinski, who finished 5th in the 2006 edition of the International Classic, will provide insight and reports from pit lane.

“The Classic at Oswego is one of the richest traditions in open-wheel racing,” said Kapuscinski.  “Often referred to as the Indianapolis 500 of short track racing, drivers like Bentley Warren, Joe Gosek, Davey Hamilton, Sam Sessions, and Gordon Johncock all took on Oswego’s Classic before heading to the Brickyard.  There is no race in the world quite like the Classic, and we are pleased to again bring this exciting event to a national audience with everyone from Suzuki presents SPEED SPORT and MAVTV.”

Top Supermodified racers Michael Barnes and Dave Danzer will lead the International Classic field to the green in Thursday night’s broadcast after time trialing on the front row of the 200 ahead of former Classic champions and Supermodified veterans Otto Sitterly, Bob Bond, Tim Snyder, Hamilton, and Gosek.

MAVTV features all things in American Real Motorsports including ASCS Sprint Car Racing, ATV Pro MX, and The Dave Despain Show.

For more information on MAVTV as well as Suzuki presents SPEED SPORT visit online at www.mavtv.com and www.nationalspeedsportnews.com.

For more information on Oswego Speedway visit online at www.oswegospeedway.com, follow on Twitter @OswegoSpeedway, or like on Facebook at facebook.com/OswegoSpeedway.

Oswego Speedway – SUZUKI PRESENTS SPEED SPORT on MAVTV

Thursday 11/26 4:00pm & 7:00pm ET/PT – Budweiser International Classic 200 for Novelis Supermodifieds

‘Diamond State 50’ Set For Delaware International Speedway Thursday, May 26;

Short Track Super Series Fueled By VP South Region Special To Offer $5,000 Winner’s Share From $25,000-Plus Purse Structure

DELMAR, DE – The date has been set for a Delaware dirt-track highlight of 2016.

delmarFor the second consecutive year, the Short Track Super Series Fueled By VP South Region will visit Delaware International Speedway to take part in the prestigious ‘Diamond State 50’ at Charlie Cathell’s half-mile oval. After a decade-long absence, the event returned to Delaware International last summer, setting the stage for the ’16 edition.

The ‘Diamond State 50’ is scheduled for Thursday, May 26, 2016. An August rain date will be used, if needed.

“We are very pleased to be able to showcase our series in the First State and work with the Cathell family again next year,” said Short Track Super Series organizer Brett Deyo of BD Motorsports Media LLC. “Our out-of-state racers were blown away by the tacky clay surface and amenities at Delaware International. It was a season highlight for all of us.”

The ’15 ‘Diamond State 50’ was slated for Tuesday, August 4. Heavy rain pushed the event back to Wednesday night. David Van Horn Jr. of Harmony, N.J., picked up the $5,215 victory over Delaware’s Matt Jester, Pennsylvania star Craig Von Dohren and Maryland drivers Shawn Ward and Brad Trice.

The ’16 May date, preceding Memorial Day weekend, will showcase the ‘Diamond State 50’ earlier in the season when race teams are fresh and more competitors are in the mix for top positions in the STSS South Region point standings.

“Last year’s race set the groundwork for a success in ’16,” Deyo said. “The earlier date as a true ‘kickoff to summer’ should allow even more competitors to take part in the event before the summer stretch and get the holiday weekend started with a bang.”

Again, the ‘Diamond State 50’ will be headlined by a big-block/small-block Modified 50-lap main event offering a total purse of more than $25,700. The winner’s share of $5,000 will be boosted by lap money and bonus cash. The 10th-place finisher will receive a minimum of $1,000, with $400 to take the green flag.

Crate 602 Sportsman will take part in the program. A full lineup will be announced as the event approaches.

Cathell is looking forward to the return of the STSS at the ‘Diamond State 50’ program.

“We had cars from as far north as New York last year and the crowd was strong in spite of the weather postponement we faced,” Cathell said. “We’re looking forward to an even bigger and better show this time around.”

The STSS South Region is set for its second season with a focus on racers from New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Delaware. Ryan Watt of Boyertown, Pa., was the inaugural STSS South Region champion and pocketed $7,500 for his efforts.

Marketing opportunities for the ‘Diamond State 50’ are available now by contacting Deyo at 845.728.2781 or via e-mail: bdmotorsportsmedia@gmail.com.

The Delaware Motorsports Complex, located on the First State side of the Delaware/Maryland border, includes Delaware International Speedway, the U.S. 13 Dragway and the U.S. 13 Kart Track. The Cathell family has operated the facility since 1963.

The ‘Diamond State 50’ is the first of two midweek Modified events on the track’s ’16 calendar. The annual Camp Barnes Benefit Stock Car Race is slated for a Tuesday night in June. This event is run to benefit the Camp Barnes, not-for-profit youth summer camp run by the Delaware State Police in Ocean View, Del.

To learn more about the Short Track Super Series or BD Motorsports Media, visit www.bdmotorsportsmedia.com, call 845.728.2781 or e-mail bdmotorsportsmedia@gmail.com.  “Like” Short Track Super Series on Facebook or follow @ShortTrackSS on Twitter.

Delaware International Speedway, located at 37854 Sussex Highway Delmar, Delaware 19940, is on the web at www.delawareracing.com and can be contacted by phone, Monday-Friday from 9 a.m.4 p.m., at 302.846.3911.

Past ‘Diamond State 50’ Winners

2015: David Van Horn Jr. (Modified)
2005:
Danny Johnson (Modified) & David Hill (Late Model)
2004: Ricky Elliott (Modified) & Kenny Pettyjohn (Late Model)
2003: Weather
2002: Jimmy Horton (Modified) & David Hill (Late Model)
2001: Jimmy Horton (Modified vs. Late Model)
2000: Kenny Brightbill (Modified vs. Late Model)
1999: Gary Stuhler (Modified vs. Late Model)

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