Column By: MARTY CZEKALA / RPW – RANSOMVILLE, NY – Mat Williamson can’t be stopped at his Friday night home.
The 2022 Modified track champion went from 7th to 1st and made the race-winning pass on Chad Brachmann on lap 17, utilizing the bottom of the track.
Williamson had a better long-run car throughout the race, but cautions kept killing “Money Mat’s” momentum.
“The cautions, he was really good. I was so tight that I couldn’t rotate the bottom. I had to be down there, or else I would crowd the guy starting 4th. Fortunately, after the last restart, I jabbed the brake and got the car to turn. Rotated it pretty good to stick with Chad and got by him,” Williamson told RPW after winning his 8th of the year at “The Big R.”
Tonight’s race was a non-points race in a Big Block vs. Small Block Challenge. Williamson brought out his Big Block that he hasn’t run in a while.
“The car is a few years old, but it’s probably got ten races on it,” Williamson said. “This is the car we ran in Canada during the 2019 Super DIRTcar Series. This was the car we put together to run the Canadian races that Buzz (Chew, car owner for #88 in SDS) didn’t really want to do. Now that we got him convinced to do the Canadian races, it’s cool to get out and race this car when we can.”
Brachmann finished 2nd, while Ryan Susice rounded out the podium.
Garrison Krentz took a 4th place finish, his best of 2022. Phil Vigneri III rounded out the top five.
In Street Stock action, Simon Bissell used a lap three restart to make the pass for the lead and score his first career Street Stock win in the Mateo Hope King of the Hill Memorial.
“Unbelievable. It’s so satisfying to get it done for my team. You know, pressured as it was the last one of the year. We were so close all year long. We finally did it.”
Bissell started 3rd in the feature and wasted no time getting closer and closer to the lead.
On lap five of the race, Bissell would get some bite off of turn two to get past Ken Camidge and not look back on the lead.
But to secure the win wasn’t easy. In the long run, Brandon Sherwood was closing in while the leaders were in lapped traffic. With three to go entering turn one, Sherwood jammed on the brakes to avoid taking out the leader and spun himself out to trigger the caution. Due to a 360 spin, while keeping the wheels going, Sherwood blended into P3.
“I could hear him back there. I knew they were closing in. I kept reading the billboard and seeing who was coming to me. I was so focused, and the last couple of laps, I held my breath the whole way around the track,”
Another issue was that his car was starting to overheat.
“The car’s been having an issue all year with the cautions. I was really starting to panic there at the end. The temp started spiking up. It just held on; we were really pushing the car for all it had at the end. It was over 220 degrees,” Bissell explained.
Other winners included Brett Senek in Sportsman and Ryan Plante in Mini Stocks. At the same time, Cole Susice took home the MS championship, 3rd since 2016.
73 cars checked in for the season finale at Ransomville.
BB/SB Challenge (30 Laps)
6 Mat Williamson (14:58.546), 2. 3 Chad Brachmann (2.315s), 3. 38 Ryan Susice (4.443s), 4. 56 Garrison Krentz (7.007s), 5. 44v Phil Vigneri III (7.007s), 6. 11j James Sweeting (13.118s), 7. 3w Noah Walker (14.448s), 8. 9 Jonathon Reid (14.955s), 9. 26 Ricky Richner (17.416s), 10. 11n Ricky Newton (-1L), 11. 41 Tony Pangrazio (-8L), 12. 4 Greg Martin (-14L), 13. 111 Alan Wills (-15L), 14. 678 John Smith (-18L), 15. 55c Jesse Cotriss (-21L), 16. 33J Robbie Johnston (-22L)
Heat Winners: 6 Williamson, 3 Brachmann
Fastest Lap: 6 Williamson 17.470s
Mateo Hope SS King of The Hill (30 Laps)
22 Simon Bissell (26:37.012), 2. 66 Dan Schulz (1.465s), 3. 87 Brandon Sherwood (1.691s), 4. 00 Damien Long (2.753s), 5. 25k Ken Camidge (3.067s), 6. 93 Jared Hill (5.359s), 7. 63 Mike Fellows (5.847s), 8. 36 Austin Susice (7.644s), 9. 34t Tommy Bowen (9.210s), 10. 55d Chris Dziomba (10.259s), 11. 126 Chuck Cala (10.299s). 12. 3 Randy Zimmerman (-1L), 13. J12 Jeff Sonnenberg (-1L), 14. 31x Ronnie Richter (-1L), 15. 2 Pete Stefanski (-3L), 16. 2Q Jesse Qutermous (-6L), 17. 18d Mike Childrose (-11L), 18. 39 Ely Mangiarelli (-13L), 19. 5 Joey Zimmerman (-14L), 20. 74d Dennis Cummings (-25L), 21. 17g Gary Camidge (-27L), 22. 61 Jacob Vick (-28L), 23. 24 Zack Spangenburg (-29L), 24. 375 Ray Henry (DNS)
Heat Winners: 22 Bissell, 39 Mangiarelli, 00 Long
Fastest Lap: 22 Bissell 20.163s