RPW Column: Matt Sheppard Captures DIRTcar Modified Win At Orange County Fair Speedway

Column By: MIKE TRAVERSE / RPW – MIDDLETOWN, NY – After leading for quite a few laps of the 76 lap Summer Championship race at OCFS on July 2nd, Matt Sheppard eventually finished 2nd to Anthony Perrego.

When Sheppard took the lead in Saturday night’s United Rentals DIRTcar feature, he made sure that there would be no repeat of the previous week’s result as he raced to Victory Lane over Mike Gular and Alex Yankowski.

After the redraw, it was Gular and Yankowski leading the field to green. Gular was the early leader followed by Yankowski and Sheppard with Super Matt taking 2nd on lap 6. Perrego had moved up to 4th behind Yankowski when caution was out after 12 laps completed for Charles Loiodice. Sheppard made his move for the lead on the restart with Perrego racing into 3rd. Perrego slowed with a flat on lap 18 bringing out the caution.

Sheppard maintained his lead on the restart, but Gular was hanging tough. After a few laps, Sheppard gradually opened up the lead. The rest of the way went caution free with Sheppard taking the win by 2 seconds over Gular with Yankowski 3rd, Max McLaughlin 4th and Tyler Boniface 5th. Jimmy Horton was 6th with Danny Creeden 7th, Dillon Steuer 8th, Tanner VanDoren 9th and Bobby Flood 10th.

John Bockhorn captured a hard earned wire-to-wire win in the Arkel Motors Sportsman division. It was Bockhorn’s first ever Sportsman victory as he was victorious over Cody Higbie and Drew Boniface.

After some early cautions, the race settled down with Bockhorn leading John Kendall. Boniface was working well on the high groove and moved to 2nd on lap 7. With some green flag laps, the running order remained stable, with Boniface pressuring Bockhorn for the lead until caution was out on lap 17.

After the restart with 3 to go, there were some big changes in the top 10 running order. As Bockhorn was able to close out the final 3 laps for the win, there was some charging towards the front from Higbie. Cody restarted 10th and took 2nd from Boniface on the final lap. Mike Sabia moved from 7th to 4th. Travis Green was 5th with Tyler Peet 6th, Grant Hilfiger 7th, Kendall 8th, John Farissier 9th and Gary Edwards Jr. 10th.

Second Generation racer, Joey Conklin Jr., has shown good speed and improving results so far in 2022, racing in the Precision Hydraulic and Oil Rookie Sportsman division. And the young up and coming driver put it all together Saturday night as he took his first win in an impressive showing. Street Stock Ace, Walt Henry, continues to impress in his open wheel car with a 2nd place finish. Mark Shupp was 3rd, Fred Pavia 4th and John Doty 5th. Rounding out the top 10 were Mike Mikulski 6th, Mike Weslowski 7th, Randy Torres 8th, Thor Holmgren 9th and Donnie Campbell 10th.

The OCFS Kids Club held a successful Bike Giveaway on Saturday. Over 40 youngsters went home happy with a shiny new bike to ride around in their neighborhoods. A very well done and thank you goes out to Christina Contento, the Kids Club director and to all those at OCFS who pitched in and helped out the bike giveaway a big success with donations.

Racing resumes at OCFS on Saturday, July 16 with the Big Blocks, the H.O. Penn Small Blocks, Sportsman and North East Parts Group Street Stocks all in action.

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