Flat Tire, No Problem: Danny Creeden Nurses Deflated Right-Rear Tire To $5,200 Thunder Mountain Short Track Super Series Modified Victory
By Brett Deyo
CENTER LISLE, NY – Luck was on the side of Danny Creeden on Sunday night at Thunder Mountain Speedway.
Creeden, of Wurtsboro, N.Y., nursed his No. 16x home with a flat right-rear tire to win the ‘Lightning on the Mountain’ 50-lap Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series (STSS) Fueled By Sunoco big-block/small-block Modified event, worth $5,200.
As Creeden sat in Victory Lane, the right-rear tire on his Teo-Pro Car was totally deflated.
“I could feel it start to go down around lap 30,” Creeden said. “I was hoping we didn’t get a yellow. That would have been the end of it. I’ve led this race twice and should have won but had flat tires. Tonight we had some good luck.”
The ‘Lightning on the Mountain’ was originally scheduled for Memorial Day weekend but rain pushed the event back to Sunday night. The event was Race No. 7 of the STSS Halmar International North Region.
A strong field of 44 STSS Modifieds attempted to qualify.
The redraw of top heat-race qualifiers placed Creeden on the pole for the main event. The event was slowed just once by a yellow flag on lap one. The remainder of the main ran caution-free.
On lap two, second-starter Anthony Perrego got momentarily crossed up entering turn one. Perrego momentarily collected Mike Gular before both were able to keep rolling.
Brett Tonkin cleared the tangle and chased Creeden for the first 32 laps of the event as the leaders raced through heavy lapped traffic.
Gular, who had fallen back to sixth, methodically raced back toward the front in the Terry Fasnacht-owned No. 2A. On lap 33, the recently crowned Grandview (Pa.) Speedway champion cleared Tonkin for the runner-up position and began his pursuit of Creeden.
As the leaders raced through the slower cars, Gular closed on Creeden but couldn’t unseat the leader. Creeden collected his fifth career STSS Modified victory and first since Sept. 23, 2016.
Creeden earned $5,000 from the posted pay structure and $200 from Superior Remodeling as the race’s Halfway Leader.
Gular, of Boyertown, Pa., registered his best-career STSS Modified finish in second, worth $3,000 despite damage to the car’s right-side sail panel.
After starting 10th, Matt Sheppard of Waterloo, N.Y., rallied to finish third aboard the Sweeteners Plus No. 92s. Sheppard kept his quest for the $57,500 Sunoco Race Fuels ‘Grand Championship’ alive with the podium effort.
Middletown, N.Y.’s Perrego recovered from his early tangle to finish fourth in Brian Smith’s No. 44. Billy Decker of Sidney, N.Y., held onto the STSS North Region point lead with two events remaining.
Corning, N.Y.’s Cory Costa drove from 13th to finish sixth, followed by Carbondale, Pa.’s Tonkin; Groton, N.Y.’s Nick Nye, who ran inside the top-10 for the entire distance; Central New York driver Mike Bowman, from 15th; and Lake Ariel, Pa., native Brian Malcolm.
Heat winners for the 44 STSS Modifieds were Nye, Perrego, Sheppard, Creeden and Tonkin. The three consolations went to J.R. Hurlburt, Duane Howard and Alan Barker.
Will Eastman of Oneonta, N.Y., dominated the 25-lap STSS Crate 602 Sportsman main event, taking $1,000 home from the fourth STSS North Region event. The win was Eastman’s first with the Short Track Super Series. Eastman started second and led the entire distance.
Pennsylvania teenager Alex Yankowski chased Eastman across the line. Series point leader Tom Collins finished third, followed 13th-starter Dustin Jordan and Rich Talada.
Heat winners were Yankowski, Eastman and Talada.
Earl Zimmer of Newark Valley, N.Y., was declared the winner of the 20-lap Street Stock main event. Zimmer crossed the line in second but was awarded the $1,000 victory when apparent victor Shane Wolf Jr. was disqualified for a tire infraction.
Don Russell finished second, followed by Mike Wilbur, Butch Green and Brenton Miller.
MOUNTAIN MEMOS: The Sunday night event was pushed through rapidly, with the STSS Modified main event completed by 7:50 p.m. and the entire show in the books before 9 p.m., sending fans and racers home early….
Tough break for Rick Laubach, whose car was towed off on the parade lap of the STSS Modified feature with a left-front break issue. He received the WELD Wheels Hard Luck Award….
Runner-up STSS Modified finisher Mike Gular hadn’t turned a lap at Thunder Mountain Speedway since 2003….
Andy Bachetti rallied from 23rd starting position to finish 11th and earned the Hard Charger distinction of $200 cash from Land Hoe Maintenance, a $200 certificate from Beyea Headers and a $50 certificate from QA1….
Next up at Thunder Mountain is the two-day “Working Man’s Race” Short Track SuperNationals on Friday-Saturday October 5-6. Friday night includes STSS Sportsman, the American Racer Cup Sportsman Match Races, CRSA 305 Sprint Cars, XCel 600 Modifieds and Modified practice. The Saturday agenda includes STSS Modifieds and American Racer Cup Modified Match Races, STSS Crate 602 Sportsman, XCel 600 Modifieds, Street Stocks and American Racer Cup Champion’s Dash and Vintage Modifieds.
Thunder Mountain Speedway is located at 91 Hunts Corners Road Center Lisle, NY 13797, approximately 25 miles north of Binghamton. The three-eighths-mile clay oval features hillside concrete seating, free parking and camping, a variety of concession items and novelties, a family environment and more.
To learn more about the 2018 Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco, visit www.shorttracksuperseries.com, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, check out ‘Short Track Super Series’ on Facebook or @ShortTrackSS on Twitter or Instagram.
The Short Track Super Series is presented by American Racer/Lias Tire, Sunoco Race Fuel, Insinger Performance, Bob Hilbert Sportswear, Halmar International, Allstar Performance, ATL Racing Fuel Cells, Behrent’s Performance Warehouse, Beyea Custom Headers, Bicknell Racing Products, Dirt Track Digest, Fast Axle, Fox Racing Shocks, Henry’s Exhaust, Hig Fab, HyperCo, Kirkey Racing Fabrication, K&N, Land Hoe Maintenance, Precision Hydraulic & Oil, QA1, Race Pro Weekly, Racing Optics, Superior Remodeling, Teo-Pro Car, Vahlco, Velocita, Weld & Wilwood.
‘LIGHTNING ON THE MOUNTAIN’ RACE SUMMARY – THUNDER MOUNTAIN SPEEDWAY SEPTEMBER 23, 2018
Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco Halmar International Modified North Region Event No. 7 Feature Finish (50 laps): DANNY CREEDEN, Mike Gular, Matt Sheppard, Anthony Perrego, Billy Decker, Cory Costa, Brett Tonkin, Nick Nye, Mike Bowman, Brian Malcolm, Andy Bachetti, Mat Williamson, Steven Cummings, Craig Hanson, Rusty Smith, Mike Colsten, J.R. Hurlburt, Alan Barker, Mike Mahaney, Jeremy Smith, Colton Wilson, Lee DeWitt, Brad Szulewski, Joe Judge, Rick Laubach, Duane Howard, Jerry Higbie.
Did Not Start: Mike Ricci.
Did Not Qualify: Shaun Walker, Steve Davis, Bobby Stahl, Kurt Hundeland, Nick Rochinski, Kurt Decker, Damon Decker, John Morse, Steven Deinhardt, Kailee DiMorier, Sam Allen, Brent Wilcox, Larry Mekic, Ken Titus, Chance Spoonhower, Shayne Spoonhower.
American Racer/Lias Tire Bonuses (FREE Tire): Brian Malcolm (10th) & Craig Hanson (14th)
ATL Fuel Cell Bonus ($200): Billy Decker (fifth)
Behrent’s Performance Warehouse Bonuses ($50 Gift Cards): Anthony Perrego (fourth) & Mike Bowman (ninth)
Beyea Custom Headers Heat Winners ($50 Certificates): Nick Nye, Anthony Perrego, Matt Sheppard, Danny Creeden & Brett Tonkin
Beyea Custom Headers Hard Charger ($200 Certificate): Andy Bachetti (23rd to 11th)
Henry’s Exhaust Power Position ($50 Certificate): Andy Bachetti (11th)
Land Hoe Maintenance Hard Charger ($200 Cash): Andy Bachetti (23rd to 11th)
QA1 Hard Charger ($50 Certificate): Andy Bachetti (23rd to 11th)
Racing Optics Bonus (Sleeve of Tear-Offs): Matt Sheppard (third)
Sunoco Race Fuels/Insinger Performance Bonuses ($50 Credit): Mike Gular (second), Mat Williamson (12th) & Lee DeWitt (22nd)
Superior Remodeling Halfway Leader ($200): Danny Creeden
WELD Wheels Hard Luck Award (FREE Wheel): Rick Laubach (25th)
Wilwood ‘Lucky 7’ Bonus ($50 Certificate): Brett Tonkin (seventh)
Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco Halmar International
Crate 602 Sportsman North Region Event No. 4 Feature Finish (25 laps): WILL EASTMAN, Alex Yankowski, Tom Collins, Dustin Jordan, Rich Talada, Jimmy Zacharias, Mike Schane, Kyle Rohner, Hunter Lapp, Dale Welty, Mike Austin, Travis Green, Daniel Morgiewicz, Joe Brown, Hilary Ward, Corey Cormier, Olin Renwick, Kenny Hammond, Matt Spencer, Bryan Bartos, Brandon Fritsch, Rich Powell, Marc Goodwin.
Street Stock Feature Finish (20 laps): EARL ZIMMER, Don Russell, Mike Wilbur, Butch Green, Brenton Miller, Jonathan Carpenter, Bob Crandall, Kevin Garland, Kyle Stark, Doug Stack Jr., Jerry Lobdell, Jonathan Fowlston.
Disqualified: Shane Wolf.