Story By: BRETT DEYO / SHORT TRACK SUPER SERIES – AFTON, NY – Will there be “Working Man’s Race” winner No. 15?
Since its inception in 2006, the American Racer Cup Short Track SuperNationals has produced 14 different winners in its 14 editions, most recently Queensbury, N.Y.’s Demetrios Drellos in last October’s running.
This weekend – Friday-Saturday Oct. 7-8 – the Afton Motorsports Park, located off Interstate 88 Exit 7 in Afton, N.Y., again hosts the Short Track SuperNationals for two days of racing, headlined by the 50-lap, $5,500-to-win big-block/small-block Modified event.
The Short Track SuperNationals got its start as the first event promotion by Brett Deyo of BD Motorsports Media LLC in 2006, partnering with Pat and Janet Jordan, then promoters of the Afton Fairgrounds oval.
Mike Ricci, a southeastern New York short-track ace, won the very first Short Track SuperNationals in ’06 at Afton. Following a two-year break due to Deyo’s work commitments at Area Auto Racing News, the event was back in 2009 at Five Mile Point Speedway in Kirkwood, N.Y., starting a five-year run at the quarter-mile oval.
Pennsylvania’s Kevin Hirthler topped the ’09 version at Five Mile Point kicking off the event at the ‘Home Speedway of the Southern Tier’ with Justin Holland (’10), Duane Howard (’11), Danny Tyler (’12) and Craig Hanson (’13) etching their names in SuperNationals history as Five Mile Point victors.
For the ’14 edition, the SuperNationals moved back to its birthplace at Afton. Claiming victory in the return to Afton (then operating under the I-88 Speedway moniker) was Southern Tier standout Shaun Walker. In the years to follow, checkered flags went to Danny Creeden (2015), Ryan Godown (2016) and Rusty Smith (2017).
The Short Track SuperNationals took place at Thunder Mountain Speedway in Center Lisle, N.Y., for one year with Andy Bachetti taking the 2018 triumph.
Matt Sheppard (2019), Max McLaughlin (2021) and Demetrios Drellos (2022) have topped the last three editions at Afton, with 2020 falling to New York State COVID restrictions.
Two days of racing are set for ’23 edition of the “Working Man’s Race.”
Friday (Oct. 7) includes a 30-lap, $1,500-to-win Crate 602 Sportsman event ($2,000 to win with $20 “Gambler’s Fee” posted), American Racer Cup Crate 602 Sportsman One-on-One Match Races ($1,000 to win), Factory Stocks (now $1,000 to win for the Shirley Shootout), Limited Sportsman ($500 to win) and Modified Open Practice (two fastest lap times transfer to Saturday’s redraw).
Saturday (Oct. 8) is headlined by the STSS Modifieds in a 50-lap, $5,500-to-win, $1,000-for-10th, $500-to-start program. Modifieds take part in American Racer Cup One-on-One Match Races ($2,000 to win) plus STSS Crate 602 Sportsman in the Precision Hydraulic & Oil North Region championship round ($1,500 to win), FWD Four Cylinders ($300 to win) and Mohawk Valley Vintage Dirt Modifieds.
If conditions permit, Sunday (Oct. 9) could be utilized as a rain date.
Short Track SuperNationals Event History
October 8, 2022 (Afton Motorsports Park): DEMETRIOS DRELLOS – Bobby Hackel – Craig Hanson – Dillon Steuer – Danny Creeden
October 9, 2021 (Afton Motorsports Park): MAX McLAUGHLIN – Billy Pauch Jr. – Danny Bouc – Matt Sheppard – Alan Barker
October 12, 2019 (Afton Motorsports Park): MATT SHEPPARD – Bobby Varin – Duane Howard – Andy Bachetti – Mike Gular
October 7, 2018 (Thunder Mountain Speedway): ANDY BACHETTI – Mat Williamson – Shaun Walker – Danny Bouc – Billy Decker
October 7, 2017 (Afton Motorsports Park): RUSTY SMITH – Andy Bachetti – Mike Gular – Mike Ricci – Rich Ricci Jr.
October 9, 2016 (I-88 Speedway): RYAN GODOWN – Danny Creeden – Andy Bachetti – Tommy Meier – Shaun Walker
October 10, 2015 (I-88 Speedway): DANNY CREEDEN – Mike Mahaney – Paul Jensen – Jeff Heotzler – Mitch Gibbs
October 11, 2014 (I-88 Speedway): SHAUN WALKER – Mike Mahaney – Mitch Gibbs – Tyler Dippel – Bobby Varin
October 12, 2013 (Five Mile Point Speedway): CRAIG HANSON – Anthony Perrego – Jackie Brown Jr. – Pat Ward – Chad Phelps
October 6, 2012 (Five Mile Point Speedway): DANNY TYLER – Bobby Varin – Brian Weaver – Billy Pauch Sr. – Mitch Gibbs
October 7, 2011 (Five Mile Point Speedway): DUANE HOWARD – Danny Tyler – Billy Pauch Sr. – Jeff Strunk – Jeff Heotzler
October 9, 2010 (Five Mile Point Speedway): JUSTIN HOLLAND – Billy Pauch Jr. – Kevin Bates – Brian Weaver – Danny Tyler
October 10, 2009 (Five Mile Point Speedway): KEVIN HIRTHLER – Mike Ricci – Mike Gular – Sean Merkel – Joey Grammes
October 7, 2006 (Afton Speedway): MIKE RICCI – J.R. Hurlburt – Brian Weaver – Joey Grammes – Davie Franek