By Brett Rose
HAGERSTOWN, MD – Ken Duke, Jr. only needed the final lap to lead to score the win in the Mason-Dixon Showdown on Saturday night at Hagerstown Speedway.
For the first time in the history of Hagerstown Speedway, the IMCA RaceSaver 305 Sprints were the headlining division at the famed Hub City oval. The interregional event showcased cars from the PASS, Laurel Highlands, and Virginia Sprint Series.
53 IMCA cars were pitside with teams coming as far away from Vermont and North Carolina to compete at the Maryland half-mile for the 24 starting spots in the 25 lap feature event.
Zach Newlin and Ryan Lynn paced the field to the start, but Lynn amazingly did a 360* spin in turn four that unfortunately did cause a couple cars to get tangled up before the first lap was in the books.
Newlin led the way on the restart, but quickly had company with Jeff Miller on his tail. Miller powered by on the sixth circuit to grab the top spot, and looked like the car to beat as he sliced and diced through lapped traffic while running all over the track from the bottom to his own groove over the cushion up high near the guardrail.
Meanwhile, Duke quietly worked his way up to a distant runner-up spot from his 11th –place start on the grid. Fortunately for Duke and unfortunately for Miller, Miller’s mount broke and slowed to stop in the pit area after the white flag lap.
Duke led the final half of the last lap to go in the history books as the victor of the first IMCA RaceSaver event at Hagerstown.
Crossing the checkers behind Duke were Newlin, Scott Lutz from 16th, Tyler Reinhardt, and fifth-place finisher Drew Ritchey.
In his winner’s interview with Danny Wilson, Duke stated: “You know honestly, Jeff Miller, he’s fast everywhere we go. He’s one of the fastest cars in this series. Starting eleventh, I would’ve been happy with a top five. We got up to second and began rolling on the bottom really well, and when he pulled off the backstretch, I just couldn’t believe it to be honest.”
“We’ve gone 21 months without winning a race, and that’s the longest I ever want to go without winning one…..I’ll tell you what, this track really takes well to 305 Sprint Car racing and if you have us back, we’d love to come back.”, said Miller.
Qualifying heat winners John Scarborough, Darren Miller, Ritchey, and Newlin each picked up an additional $50 for their efforts courtesy of Turn 5 Turnaround. Twin B-Main winners were Robbie Bartchy and Cale Reigle.
Doug Hoffman got his second Pure Stock win of 2018, coming on the heels of default as unofficial winner Ryan Sager was disqualified upon post-race inspection. The top five was shuffled even more as Mike Desch also was disqualified. So that left second through fifth going to Jamie Zentmyer, Bryan Neff, Danny Beavers Jr., and Tom Wakefield.
Jonathan Raley grabbed the Hobby Stock feature win, while Matt Worley won the U-Car feature nightcap.
Notes: This was the first race held at Hagerstown since April 28th. It was an absolute beautiful night for racing as 106 cars filled the pit area. Thanks go out to everyone who supported this night.
A wild multi-car flip took place in the second 305 Sprint heat race along the frontstretch following a restart, that saw one car just land over the guardrail into the pit area. No one was injured in the melee.
The Pure Stock feature had its share of controversy and attrition that led to only 12 of the 15 scheduled laps completed due to the 30 minute time limit rule.
Next week, the Ultimate Northeast Super Late Model Series presented by All Things Automotive comes back for the second time in 2018 with Super Late Models going for $5,000 to win.
IMCA RaceSaver 305 Sprints – 1. 67-Ken Duke Jr., ; 2. 11Z-Zachary Newlin, ; 3. 33-Scott Lutz, ; 4. 4-Tyler Reinhardt, ; 5. 880-Drew Ritchey, ; 6. 61-John Scarborough, ; 7. 9C-Darren Miller, ; 8. 75-Dylan Shatzer, ; 9. 26-Ryan Lynn, ; 10. 5P-John Walp, ; 11. 8D-Scott Ellerman, ; 12. 50-Jay Krout, ; 13. 12J-Jonathan Jones, ; 14. 44V-Daren Bolac, ; 15. 20-Stephanie Dodson, ; 16. 29B-Robbie Bartchy, ; 17. 6X-Brad Mellott, ; 18. 53W-Jimmy White, ; 19. 6-Tony Harris, ; 20. 57J-Jeffrey Miller, ; 21. 99-Cale Reigle, ; 22. 69K-Kassidy Kreitz, ; 23. 88P-Fred Arnold, ; (DNS) 91J-John Fiore
Pure Stock – 1. S7-Doug Hoffman, ; 2. 81J-Jamie Zentmyer, ; 3. 03-Bryan Neff, ; 4. 62-Danny Beavers Jr., ; 5. 27-Tom Wakefield, ; 6. 7-Brian Swiger, ; 7. 19M-Bobby Meixsell, ; 8. 6R-Joe Rodgers, ; 9. 22-Jamey Swank, 12]; 10. 12-Michael Warrenfeltz, ; 11. 2+2-Chris Ebersole, ; 12. 65-Dillon Wilson, ; 13. 36A-Sam Archer, ; 14. 1-Charles Shearer, ; 15. 6C-Tony Catlett, ; 16. 6-Wayne Hawbaker, ; 17. 19-Danny Atherton, ; 18. 64-William Crook, ; DNS 14-Gary Breeden, DQ 22*-Ryan Sager, ; 59-Mike Desch, 
Hobby Stock – 1. 92-Jonathan Raley, ; 2. 67-Billy Ecton, ; 3. 41-Tom Caravello, ; 4. 57-William Ecton Jr., ; 5. 11A-James Speelman, ; 6. 52-Jeff Dillon, ; 7. 41X-Sam Caravello, ; 8. 7K-Michael Knight, ; 9. 03-Robert Thompson, ; 10. 10-Drew Fertig, ; 11. 34-Terry Leach, ; DNS 00-Charles Noblitt
U-Cars – 1. 6W-Matt Worley, ; 2. 81-Matthew Chronister, ; 3. 69-Robbie Carroll, ; 4. 47-Travis Brown, ; 5. 92-Terry Hartlaub, ; 6. 26-Kent Leonard, ; 7. 21-Ricky Weaver Jr., ; 8. 405-Justin Williamson, ; 9. 00-Anthony Varner, ; 10. 36-Robert Wellman, ; 11. 00X-Shane Seville, ; 12. 18-Kala Varner, ; 13. 64F-Travis Semple, ; 14. 80-Dale Varner Jr., ; 15. 01-Kayla Bookwalter, ; 16. 27-Melvin McCartan, ; 17. 151-Eric Boozel,  DNS 15-Chris Anderson, 01M-Rusty Martin
The much-anticipated Frank Sagi Tribute Race with special guest Buddy Armel is coming up this Sunday, June 10, at Hagerstown Speedway.
Originally scheduled for May 5th, the event was rained out on that night and the decision was made to go “Old School Hagerstown” with a Sunday evening show on June 10th. This special race night honors the late Frank Sagi, who was the track announcer at Hagerstown Speedway for 39 years from 1958 thru 1996. During that time span, Sagi had a remarkable record of missing just one race, which was due to the passing of his Mother-in-Law. This year’s event also honors the distinguished driving career of the legendary “Winchester Raider”, Buddy Armel of Winchester, Virginia.
Armel was one of the top drivers at Hagerstown Speedway from the mid-60’s until hanging up his helmet in 1990, competing in the Super Modified, Super Sprint, Semi-Late and Super Late Model divisions. Always a crowd favorite and top contender, Armel retired as the all-time leading feature winner at the track until being bypassed in later years, and still sits fourth on the winner’s list.
This special evening has a little something for everyone. It all kicks off with a “Meet & Greet” session behind the main grandstand area with Buddy Armel and a great group of other retired drivers from Hagerstown Speedway’s rich history. Grandstand gates open at 4:00, with the “Meet & Greet” running from 4:30 until 5:30. Fans are urged to arrive early to participate in this unique and rare opportunity to rub elbows with their heroes of the past. Bring photos, track program books, racing papers, t-shirts or anything else that you would like to have signed by Buddy Armel and any of the assembled group of great former drivers. There will also be some surprise items on hand for the fans to view, so you’re not going to want to miss it.
On track activity will begin at 6:00 with hot laps for the competing Super Late Model, Mid-Atlantic Modified and Pure Stock divisions. Qualifying heat races begin at 6:30, followed by features for the efficient three division program designed to get fans home at an early hour to get ready for work the next day.
As an added bonus to the fans on this special night, over 200 racing t-shirts will be shot into the grandstands at different times of the evening. This will be done with cannon-like devices furnished by Tim Hottle of the Outback Motor Speedway slot car track in Winchester, Va., and Brent Hottle of Need-a-Sign? in Winchester, Va. A huge variety of t-shirts provided by the Hottle’s, ASI Racewear and the generosity of multiple race teams and sponsors will be available to the fans.
Another point of interest for fans will be a 30-year old vintage door and quarter panel off of Buddy Armel’s 1988 race car that will be chanced off before feature time. Chances will be sold all evening for just $1 each and all of the proceeds will be divided between two different finishing drivers in the Super Late Model feature. The door and quarter panel were generously donated by Mr. Rick Williamson of The Cave Speedway slot car track in Bentonville, Va. One lucky fan will win these great pieces of racing history. As a second prize, a beautifully done framed drawing by popular racing artist Jeff Lindsay of Meyersdale, Pa., featuring four of Buddy Armel’s race cars along with Frank Sagi on the microphone will go to one lucky race fan.
Race fans will be able to witness and rub elbows with a VIP list of retired star drivers like has never been assembled in one place.
Also in attendance will be a large group of his former competitors from over the years whose names were announced over the Hagerstown Speedway microphone hundreds of times each and thousands of times combined by Frank Sagi.
Among the invited VIP guests who raced against Buddy Armel, in no particular order, are: Ray Dovel, Gerald Chamberlain, Denny Bonebrake, Tom Peck, Nathan Durboraw, Jeff Robinson, Sam Nalley, Larry Gorman, Jim McBee, Gary Snelbaker, Tommy Bare, Booper Bare, Gerry Fries, Buck Johnson, Lynn Paxton, Irvin King, Mert Stine, Charlie Beeler, Tommy Irwin, Bob Marhefka, Larry Wright, Gary Martz, Charlie Cragan, Ken Imler, Tom Clise, Buck Rees, Junior Boone, Roy Anderson, Jimmy Spence, Ronnie DeHaven, Sr., Ralph Davis, Wayne Feathers, Roland Cox, Jim Edmonds, Dan Sullivan, David Wilt, Chuck Teets, Glenn Nininger, Will Rowe, Tom Myers, Rick Workman, Les Hare, Charlie Weirman, Don Zechman, Slim Devilbiss, Doug Devilbiss, Mike Woolford, Al Shawver, Sr., Kendall Moore, Bobby Maiers, Ray Kable, Jr., Pete Cameron, George Moreland, Roy Deese, Sr., Larry Dietrich, Ronnie Byers, John Burkholder, Steve Knepp, Ben Milliken, Brent Smith, Wayne Walls, Jr. and Mike Kendall.
Besides that great group, a few still active drivers who competed against Buddy Armel will also be at the speedway on Sunday night, some of them in action. Included on this list is: Gary Stuhler, Roy Deese, Jr., Andy Fries, Jim Bernheisel, Steve Campbell, Bo Feathers and Alan Sagi.
Other well-known retired drivers on the guest list who plan to be in attendance on Sunday evening, again in no particular order, include: JT Spence, Ronnie DeHaven, Jr., Jeremy Miller, Charles Buckler, Jack Bland, C.S. Fitzgerald, Jerry Foster, Gerald Davis, Van May, Frankie Plessinger, Jack Pencil, Eric Zembower, Dion LaSalle, Chuck LaSalle, Devin Friese, Bob Friese, Jeff Bryner, Randy Bushman, Craig Kline, Mike Warrenfeltz, Russ Moseley, Pete Weaver, Marvin Lescalleet, Terry Lescalleet, Scott Andrews, Brad Houck, Jeff Shearer, Doug Burkholder, Darryl Burkholder, Darryl Kendall, Richard Walls, Mike Hardy, Brian Tavenner, Tony Crim, Richard Irwin, Jim Trenary, Sean Dawson, Terry Carlyle, Mark Elksnis, Jere Weirman, Lenny Hare, Danny McSherry, Clarence Beaver, Travis Beaver, Jim Laye, Dave Burk, Jeff Friese, Bill Palmer, Nick Pappas, Wes Troup, Kim Ramer, Allen Stone, Richie Clipp, Dave Rice, Bill Funk, Pat Beard, Jake Beard, Walter Hammond, Larry Hines, Tim Light, Stan Campbell, Steve Swarmer, Mike Tudor, Frank Howery, Tim Hottle, Brent Hottle, Ralph Shoemaker and Bobby Jones.
Competing racers will have a chance to win a piece of over $10,000 worth of bonus cash and products.
Due to the generosity of a long list of race sponsors, drivers in all three divisions, the Super Late Models, Mid-Atlantic Modifieds and Pure Stocks, will receive bonuses for every position in each feature rundown.
Fans will certainly not be left out either on this special night. There will be a limited number of surprise bonus gifts distributed to youngsters 12 years old and under as they enter the grandstand gates. Also, a large number of racing t-shirts will be shot into the grandstand area throughout the night with two cannon-like devices from the front straightaway. Fans are urged to be on their toes all evening to take advantage of grabbing some of these great shirts, provided by multiple sponsors and race teams.
We hope to see everyone at Hagerstown Speedway this Sunday evening. Grandstand gates open at 4:00. The Legends Meet & Greer autograph session with Buddy Armel and retired former drivers will be held behind the main grandstands between 4:30 to 5:30. Hot laps start at 6:00, and qualifying heat races begin at 6:30.
After a silent month of May that saw three scheduled events rained out with no racing action and a shuffling of races in the 2018 schedule, we all hope that June brings us much better weekend weather for a schedule you don’t want to miss.
On June 2, Super Late Models are back for another 20/20 Dash. The 20 car/20 lap $1500 to win feature events also pays $300 to start and $100 tow money to non-qualifiers. Late Model Sportsman, Pure Stock, Hobby Stock and & 4 Cylinders are also on the card. General admission is $15, gates open at 5pm, and racing begins at 7pm.
And rescheduled from last month, it’s back to “Old School Hagerstown” with a Sunday night edition of racing for the Frank Sagi Tribute/ARCH Night featuring special guest Buddy Armel. A 6pm race time start is planned for the card featuring Super Late Models, Mid Atlantic Modifieds, and Pure Stocks.
For Father’s Day weekend, on June 16, it’s Dad’s Night out featuring the first ever visit for the IMCA RaceSaver 305 Sprint Series. Look for there to be many cars that compete regionally in the Racesaver 305 Sprint ranks to be in attendance. Pure Stock, Hobby Stock, and U-Cars are also scheduled.
June 23 brings another Super Late Model special with the All Things Automotive Ultimate Northeast LM Series, paying $5000 to the winner, plus a Pure Stock special. The UNLMS has had some great car counts at their sanctioned events this season.
Wrapping up the month on June 30 is Fan Appreciation Night. Crate Late Models, Pure Stock, Hobby Stock, and the Penn-Mar Vintage Racers can be seen in the grandstands at a cost of only $5.
Future events to take note of that have also been rescheduled and/or changed as follows:
The Mason-Dixon Shootout Series $1,500 to win event, with the $500 to win events for Pure Stock and Hobby Stock divisions have been moved to be part of the Red Nininger Memorial on July 21.
Pure Stocks have been added to the program on August 18, which is now the final point race night of the season.
An additional event has been created on August 25 for the Mid Atlantic Modifieds, and an Open Competition format for Pure Stocks and Hobby Stocks. The Classic Racing Series will also be on hand that night as well.
Racing action returns this Saturday to Hagerstown Speedway with Student Night/Armed Forces Appreciation Night.
All students with school identification, military personnel, and senior citizens will be admitted to general admission for free of charge as a token of appreciation from Hagerstown Speedway.
Super Late Models are back on the card for a 25 Lap featuring event, paying $2,000 to win and $200 to start. The Mid Atlantic Modifieds will make their second appearance of 2018, and the 4 Cylinder (RWD) Mini-Stocks will make their first appearance of the season. Pure Stocks and Hobby Stocks will also be a part of the lineup.
General admission is $15, while pit admission is $30. Pit gates open at 4pm, Grandstand gates open at 5pm, and racing begins at 7pm.
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For more information, visit the website, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or call the track office at 301-582-0640.
This Saturday night on May 5 at Hagerstown Speedway, the second annual Frank Sagi Tribute that honors the former speedway announcer will feature local racing legend Buddy Armel as a special guest to the racing festivities, along with many other former drivers that were longtime competitors at the Hub City speed plant.
Now, if you have been a fan of local dirt track racing since the 1960’s, 70’s, or 80’s, then you need not have to ask who Armel is. Simply put, he was one of the best Late Model drivers ever to suit up and climb behind the steering wheel.
Throughout Armel’s career, he drove in and won races in his own No.15 and as a driver for Gerry Smith’s Valley Proteins No.35, 36, and 1vp machines. But he will forever be best remembered as the driver of the yellow and blue No. S-3 machines from the late Lee Stultz.
Anytime and anywhere the S-3 of Stultz and Armel showed up to race, the threat of a win was eminent.
During a spell in the mid to late 1970’s, Armel was practically unbeatable at Winchester Speedway. In 1977, Armel parked the S-3 into Victory Lane at Winchester for 19 wins. Armel won his share of races at Hagerstown as well, with a career total of 81 victories and five track championships.
The biggest win came in 1983 at Hagerstown when Armel bagged a $10,000 payday in the Conococheague 100 over a field mixed of touring professionals and Hagerstown regulars. Armel retired from racing after a stellar career in 1990.
As the featured special guest of the Frank Sagi Tribute, fans will have the opportunity for a meet and greet with the 80-year old from Winchester, Virginia along with many other racers that mixed it up with Armel on the racetrack.
Gates will open at 5pm, while the meet and greet will take place from 5:30-6:30 behind the main grandstand before the racing begins at 7:00. Fans should make plans to get their early for any autographs, and are encouraged to bring any personal memorabilia they would like to be signed.
Fans will also get a once in a lifetime opportunity at a chance to own a piece of Armel memorabilia as the right side body panels from his 1988 No.15 will be raffled off and won by some lucky race fan.
On the racing card will be the Super Late Models, the Mid Atlantic Modifieds, Pure Stock, and Hobby Stock divisions. This is a special event that will be offered at the regular price of admission of $15 for the grandstands. Students/Seniors/Military are $12, and pit admission is $30.
Last year’s Frank Sagi Tribute was an overwhelming successful gathering of racers from the past as well over one hundred former winners were in attendance, and this year should be bigger than last. It’s a race of nostalgic proportions that race fans will not want to miss.
If needed, this race carries a special rain date of Sunday June 10, with an hour earlier start. Stay tuned for details if necessary action will need to be taken for this special event.
By Brett Rose
HAGERSTOWN, MD – For the first time in series history, the Mid Atlantic Modifieds took center stage as the headlining event at Hagerstown Speedway, and it was Michael Altobelli, Jr. picking up the checkered flag at the end of the 20 lap main event.
It was the third MAM win of the 2018 season for the 33 year old racer out of Saxton, Pennsylvania, and his first career win at the Hub City half-mile.
Altobelli started on the pole and led several laps before being overtaken by former Hagerstown Speedway Pure Stock track champion Mike Corbin. Several cautions past the mid-way point of the feature were the only thing that could slow down the lead pair.
But with just a couple laps remaining, Altobelli powered past Corbin to regain the lead and went on to victory. Rick Hulson was able to get by Corbin for second, while Alyssa Rowe and Ray Kable III rounded out the top five.
“I thought Corbin had me. He looked really good tonight and my car actually got a little bit better the longer the race went there, but that was just a really good race.”, elated a jubilant Altobelli in his winner’s interview.
Sam Archer collected his career first Hagerstown Speedway Pure Stock win in a wire to wire effort to hold off Doug Hoffman in the 15 lap contest. Jamie Zentmyer, Wayne Hawbaker, and Keith Koontz completed the top five.
Defending Hobby Stock track champion Davey Gross, Jr. was awarded the victory after Jonathan Raley was disqualified due to a technical infraction. All finishers were advanced up a position as it was Kevin Boyer credited with second as Jeff Dillon, Billy Ecton, Jr., and Tom Caravello finished in the top five.
Robbie Carroll picked up the U-Car feature win after a battle with Chris Anderson for the lead. The early race leader regained the top spot as Anderson’s car began to slow down in the final laps. Ricky Weaver, Jr. finished third, Wayne Brenize finished fourth, and Anthony Varner finished fifth.
Scott Rickrode and John Marks won the Penn-Mar Vintage Racers combo feature in the Modified and Sportsman divisions, respectively.
Notes: Next week on May 5, Super Late Models return with the MAM, PS & HS divisions for the Frank Sagi Tribute featuring special guest Buddy Armel along with many others legendary drivers that competed at Hagerstown Speedway.
Mid Atlantic Modifieds – 1. 95H-Michael Altobelli, ; 2. 40-Rick Hulson, ; 3. 25-Mike Corbin, ; 4. 55-Alyssa Rowe, ; 5. 90-Raymond Kable, ; 6. 95J-Justin Cullum, ; 7. 80-Keith Reed, ; 8. 26X-James Sparks, ; 9. 99-Bryan Green, ; 10. 0-Haley Kaiser, ; 11. 70L-Kyle Lloyd, ; 12. 95-Chris Fletcher, ; 13. 44-Frank DiBella, ; 14. 8M-Jeffrey McCauley, ; 15. 7H-Josh Hughes, ; 16. 1N-Hunter Nester, ; 17. 12S-Rusty Pennington, ; 18. 13M-Gary Moreland Sr., ; 19. 33-Brandon Churchey, , DNS- V16-Vic Vandergrift
Pure Stock – 1. 36A-Sam Archer, ; 2. S7-Doug Hoffman, ; 3. 81J-Jamie Zentmyer, ; 4. 6-Wayne Hawbaker, ; 5. 08-Keith Koontz, ; 6. 65-Dillon Wilson, ; 7. 03-Bryan Neff, ; 8. 62-Danny Beavers Jr., ; 9. 22-Jamey Swank, ; 10. 54-John Catlett, ; 11. 6C-Tony Catlett, ; 12. 1W-Michelle Walls, ; 13. 64-William Crook, ; 14. 19-Danny Atherton, ; 15. 11-Ed Pope, ; 16. 69-Dwayne Snyder, ; 17. 6R-Joe Rodgers, 
Hobby Stock – 1. 27-Davey Gross Jr.,; 2. 03-Kevin Boyer, ; 3. 52-Jeff Dillon, ; 4. 57-William Ecton Jr., ; 5. 41-Tom Caravello, ; 6. 67-Billy Ecton, Jr. ; 7. 11A-James Speelman, ; 8. 22-Kenny Thomas, ; 9. 7K-Michael Knight, ; 10. 10-Drew Fertig, ; 11. 55-Robert Thompson, ; 12. 12LC-Laura Chamberlain, ; DQ 92-Jonathan Raley
U-Cars – 1. 69-Robbie Carroll, ; 2. 15-Chris Anderson, ; 3. 21-Ricky Weaver Jr., ; 4. 22-Wayne Brenize, ; 5. 00-Anthony Varner, ; 6. 5-Justin Williamson, ; 7. 80-Dale Varner Jr., ; 8. 64F-Travis Semple, ; 9. 9X-Shane Seville, ; 10. 36-Robert Wellman, ; 11. 00X-Eric Seibert,