Story By: PAUL SZMAL / THUNDER MOUNTAIN SPEEDWAY – CENTER LISLE, NY – A cool Tuesday night was heated up on track as Snake Creek Marine presented the “Mr. Ford” Mike Colsten Memorial at Thunder Mountain Speedway.
By virtue of a redraw just before the 51-lap Modifed feature, Darren Smith and Cory Costa were the front row starters, with Smith grabbing the advantage. Former feature winner Jim Zacharias brought out the first caution of the event on lap 4 when his car slowed in turn 2. On the restart, Smith and Costa pulled away while Matt Sheppard battled Eric Leet for the third spot. A little further back, Billy Decker had charged into the top ten from his 16th starting spot and he fought with Rusty Smith and Nick Nye to get into the top five.
Sheppard finally locked down the third spot just past the halfway point and traffic allowed him to close on Costa, making the pass for second on lap 34. Eight laps later, Sheppard used the traffic to dive under Smith and take the lead, pulling away from Smith as the race hit the final few laps. Decker was able to make his way into third spot as well…but the race took a dramatic turn on lap 50. Going into turn one, Sheppard was hit by the Rick Wilk car as he attempted to pass him, which spun Sheppard and put him out with a flat left rear tire. That put Smith back on the point for a one-lap dash to the finish. Smith got a great restart and was able to gap Decker for a two car length margin of victory and a $5,100 payday, plus lap money and contingencies. Decker had to settle for second, followed by Costa, Rusty Smith, and Alan Barker.
Rusty Smith was asked by Kinser Hill’s team to drive their DIRTcar Crate Sportsman, and he returned the favor by starting from 16th and avoiding an opening lap wreck that damaged several cars to take the lead from Jordan Millard on lap 19 of the 30-lap feature and cruise home for the win. Millard, who led the first segment of the feature, was the runnerup, with Corey Cormier holding off a late race charge from Kreg Crooker to take fourth, while Grant Hilfiger finished fifth.
In the 20-lap Gary’s U-Pull It Budget Sportsman feature, David Dickey too the lead from Johnathan Fowlston to take a wire to wire win. Fowlston, a three time winner in the division, dropped out with a steering issue while running second on lap 9. Steve Schrader then got the second spot and held it to the checkers behind the winner. Eric Winsor, Dylan Hartman, and Ethan Decker rounded out the top five.
Racing action continues at Thunder Mountain this Saturday, June 19th with all the regular divisions in action.
RACE SUMMARY-THUNDER MOUNTAIN SPEEDWAY-JUNE 15, 2021
SNAKE CREEK MARINE MIKE COLSTEN MEMORIAL MODIFIEDS-DARREN SMITH, Billy Decker, Corey Costa, Rusty Smith, Alan Barker, Eric Leet, Nick Nye, Danny Johnson, Erick Rudolph, Danny Creeden, Danny Tyler, Marshall Hurd, David Schilling, Shaun Walker, Shayne Spoonhower, Bailey Boyd, Rick Wilk, Corey Cormier, Andy Bachetti, Matt Sheppard, Ken Hammond, Ken Titus, Chris Jordan, Jerry Higbie, Joey Colsten, Lance Willix, Landon Cummings, Jimmy Zacharias.
DIRTcar SPORTSMAN-RUSTY SMITH, Jordan Millard, Corey Cormier, Kreg Crooker, Grant Hilfiger, Todd Hayward, Tom Collins Jr, Will Eastman, Mike Nagel Jr, Jimmy Zacharias, Tim Guild, Jamie Kamrowski, Mike Austin, Stacy Jackson, Rich Talada, Ajay Potrzebowski Jr.
GARY’S U-PULL-IT BUDGET SPORTSMAN-DAVID DICKEY, Steve Schrader, Eric Winsor, Dylan Hartman, Ethan Decker, Mike Mikulski, Michael Roach, Austin Nickerson, Jeremy Hamilton, Johnathan Fowlston.