Story By: KENNY SHUPP / WOODHULL RACEWAY – A massive turnout of Police, Fire and Rescue, EMT’s and First Responders were on hand as the Canisteo Police Club presented the night of action at the Woodhull Raceway.
With twenty-three track titles to his credit at the historic Woodhull Raceway one might think that it would get easier for Billy VanPelt, however nothing could be further from the truth as he had to work hard for his second trip to victory lane in the Insinger Performance Modifieds. Mike Bills would jump into the early lead from his pole position starting spot and hold court thru the halfway point of the twenty- five lap affair. VanPelt, who began the event in the seventh starting spot wasted little time in getting to second then dogged Bills before making his winning move at the half -way mark. Once at the point BVP was clicking off some wicked fast lap times, however Jake Dgien who started the event outside row two gave VanPelt everything he could handle throughout the entire second half of the quarter century grid and with the first caution flag slowing the pace on lap sixteen, Dgien looked poised to make his first ever trip to the Woodhull Raceway victory lane. Keeping VanPelt well within striking distance Dgien had one final shot as the second and final yellow flag would wave on lap twenty-four, however VanPelt had too much momentum and Dgien had to settle for a well-deserved runner-up spot at the double checkered flags. Brady Fultz who struggled in his qualifying heat event began the feature in the ninth starting position made several smooth moves and with the help of the lap sixteen caution was able to climb to third, however that is where his charge would end as he settled for the third and final podium finishing position. Mike Bills would slip to fourth after leading early on as he was chased across the line by Russell Morseman who rounded the top five.
Jason “The Jet” Knowles took full advantage of his outside front row starting position in the Armstrong RUSH Late Model twenty lap feature event. Taking command right off the drop of the opening green, Knowles would lead every lap in taking home his first feature win of the season. Knowles good friend, Austin Allen would line up outside row two at the start and the second year Late Model driver would keep Knowles within his cross hairs throughout the entire distance but would come up a few car lengths shy at the finish. 2021 Class Track Champion, Brian “Pork Chop” Knowles advanced four spots from his inside row four starting spot to claim third at the finish as he was chased across the line by opening night winner, Steve LeBarron who began the event along side of Brian Knowles. Veteran competitor in many different forms of full fender classes, Joe Layfield raced within the top five the entire distance and capped off a good run by nailing fifth at the finish.
Several caution flags would keep the field bunched throughout most of the NAPA Crate Sportsman twenty-five lap feature go. Cayden Lawson shot into the early lead from his pole position starting spot and held a healthy advantage throughout the first half of the event. However, while leading under caution, Lawson’s machine came to a stop and with that ended a sure trip to victory lane. On the re-start, former Modified drivers Art Goodier and Stacy Jackson would assume the top two spots and after several laps of spirited competition, Goodier would hold on for his first feature win on the high banks in 2022. Try as he might, Jackson came up just a car length shy at the finish in claiming the runner-up position. While the top two were duking it our for the win, Tim Guild was quietly going about his business and moving forward from his fourth row starting position and with just a few laps remaining was charging hard towards the lead duo, but he would stall out after getting to third and that is where his great drive would end claiming the final podium spot. Lady competitor, Isabel Barron had heat race problems, began the feature in the fourteenth spot, passes several good cars and would cap off her brilliant drive by claiming fourth while opening night winner, David Mayo rounded the top five finishers.
The Joe Willcox Performance Street Stock Division once again put a solid field of competitors on the line for their twenty lap A-main. Two- time 2021 winner, Travis Webster began the event inside row two and wasted little time in getting to the front. From there Webster would have to hold off the relentless pressure of current high point man, Dan Gardner who was looking to make it two feature wins in a row. However, Webster kept his machine glued to the preferred line and held on for his first win of the year. Gardner, who began the event along side of Webster had to settle for second as the lead duo was chased across the finish line by veteran Street Stock competitor, Mick “The Quick” Seeley who claimed third. Fourth place money went to opening night winner and defending class Track Champion, Brett Crawford. Mike Williams began the event in sixth, had to go to the rear on one occasion and wound up claiming fifth at the finish. The machines of Webster, Gardner and Crawford are all built by popular local chassis designer, Dillon Potter.
Like the Joe Willcox Performance Street Stocks before them, the Hobby Stock Division can always be counted on to provide great race action and their twenty- lap feature event on this night was no exception. Second generation and former Crate Sportsman driver, Kaiden Dgien would begin the feature in the second row and after methodically working his way into the lead would cruise to his first feature win of the year. However, for Dgien it would not come easy as he had to hold off a determined Jeredd Dennis who was looking to pick-up his second win of the year, however the 2021 Hobby Stock Track Champion would have to settle for second at the finish as the top two machines were both built by Jerred Dennis and his now retired father, Carter. Mike Spencer was involved in an early race incident and rallied to claim third at the finish while Paul Dgien would put on a steady drive to nail down fourth place at the finish. After a successful career in the Mini Stock Class, Jason Ketrow has shifted his talent to the popular Hobby Stock Division. Beginning the event in the sixth row, he steadily moved forward and claimed fifth at the finish.
It was wild action throughout the entire Wicked Tee’s Mini Stock feature event with several different drivers taking their turn at the top. Even with relatively small numbers, the Mini’s still managed to put on great race action with Jason Warner, Rick Amidon and Tony Dickerson all taking their turn leading the event. With just a few laps remaining it appeared as though Warner was going to pick-up his first feature of the season, but Dickerson had other ideas as he swept around Warner late in the event to take home his first feature win of the season. Warner settled for second as former Crate Sportsman lady driver; Danielle Thomas had her best run of the year in taking home third. Ryan Stone began the feature deep in the field and rallied to claim fourth while early race leader, Rick Amidon struggled late in the event but still managed to round out the top five.
Ryan Austin in the FWD and Bradly Morseman in the Wicked Tee’s Youth Warrior Divisions continue to remain undefeated in their respective classes as both competitors were flawless in making their third trip to victory lane.
For Austin he began the event inside row two, shot into the lead entering turn one and the rest was history as he cruised to the win. Wesley Houghtaling was able to shake off some earlier season gremlins to finish second as Kevin Doud and Nick Brown followed him.
In the Wicked Tee’s Warriors, Morseman began the fifteen- lap feature in the sixth position, moved into the top spot quickly and never looked back. A few yellow flag slow downs would keep Marshall O’Brian within striking distance, but for the third time this season, O’Brian would have to settle for a well -deserved second place finish. Jaden Stone, Kayley Bacon and Kayleigh Morseman would complete the top five. Other Warrior competitors included Courtney Thomas, Brayden Feenaughty and Desaray Miles.
Congratulations to all competitors.
Up next at Woodhull it will be the Annual George Williams Memorial featuring a 30 lap, $2,500 to win Insinger Performance Modified feature in addition to a regular show for all of Woodhull’s weekly divisions. The night of action sponsored by Superior Propane and the Elkland Moose.
Gates for the May 21 event open at 4:30 with racing at 6:30.
INSINGER PERFORMANCE MODIFIEDS. (16 cars)
25 lap feature. BILLY VANPELT (2), Jake Dgien, Brady Fultz, Mike Bills, Russell Morseman, Donnie Lawson, Dayton Brewer, Brian Doolittle, Joe Dgien, Braden Bills, Cole Youse, Gregg Turner, Steve Coots, Ken Wade, Tony Harris, Bob Silvernail.
NAPA CRATE SPORTSMAN (16 cars)
25 lap feature. ART GOODIER, Stacy Jackson, Tim Guild, Isabel Barron, David Mayo, Levi Riley, Ajay Costley, Josh Nobriga, Adam Taft, Matt Sullivan, Brayden Buchanan, Matt Strauss, Cayden Lawson, Ted Morseman, Blake Lawson, Josh Makatura
ARMSTRONG RUSH CRATE LATE MODELS. (12 cars)
20 lap feature. JASON KNOWLES, Austin Allen, Brian Knowles, Steve LeBarron, Joe Layfield, Brett Marlatt, Jim Buck, Aaron Miller, Jason McGregor, Jacob Tubbs, Rickie Loucks, John Haggerty
JOE WILLCOX PERFORMANCE STREET STOCKS. (10 cars)
20 lap feature. TRAVIS WEBSTER, Dan Gardner, Mick Seeley, Brett Crawford, Mike Williams, Luke Boom, Dennis Loucks, Roland Duell, Jesse Tuthill, Shane Wolf Jr.
HOBBY STOCKS. (17 cars)
20 lap feature. KAIDEN DGIEN, Jeredd Dennis, Mike Spencer, Paul Dgien, Jason Ketrow, Joe Birdsall, Scott Brown, Wayne Robertson, Brian Austin, Greg Young, Brandon Conklin, Scooter Brown, Mike Carapella, Meadow Dgien, Dillon Philip, Brent Williams, Keegan Smith
WICKED TEE’S MINI STOCKS. (8 cars)
20 lap feature. TONY DICKERSON, Jason Warner, Danielle Thomas, Ryan Stone, Rick Amidon, Jordan Costley, Travis Southard, Ray Hyer
FRONT WHEEL DRIVE (4 cars)
20 lap feature. RYAN AUSTIN (3), Wesley Houghtaling, Kevin Doud, Nick Brown.
WICKED TEE’SS WARRIORS. (8 cars)
15 lap feature. BRADLY MORSEMAN (3), Marshall O’Brian, Jaden Stone, Kayley Bacon, Keyleigh Morseman, Courtney Thomas, Brayden Feenaughty, Desaray Miles