MIKE MAHANEY VISITS VICTORY LANE AT FONDA FOR THE FOURTH TIME ON SATURDAY NIGHT
By: Ron Szczerba
Fonda, NY – On Saturday evening at the “Track of Champions” Fonda Speedway, Mike Mahaney won for the fourth time in his career, but for the first time on a regular Saturday evening racing program.
Mahaney’s first win at Fonda came back on 4/7/2012 on opening day in the $4,000 to win “Ice Jam” event. The #21 car that he was driving at that time was sponsored by the family-owned Woodside Farms, but nobody really knew who Mahaney was as he said in victory lane on that day “nobody knows who I am, we just came here today to try out our Finger Lakes motor”.
Turns out that Mike is the son of former competitor Jim Mahaney and as the years went on people started to find out just who Mike Mahaney was. He won at Fonda again on 9/23/2012 in a $12,000 to win, 112-lap event that was a tribute to Jack Johnson in the Woodside Farms sponsored car. Another win for Mahaney came in the Buzz Chew #88 on 8/2/2017 in an event called “The Jack”, a 50-lap event that paid $5,000 to win.
Fast forward to 2021 in a year that Mahaney announced that he was going to be a Fonda Speedway regular in the Adirondack Auto #35 owned by George Huttig. On Saturday evening Mahaney won a regular $2,400 to win Saturday night event for the first time in his career after taking the lead away from JaMike Sowle on lap 19 of the 30-lap Sunoco Modified event.
“It is so cool to be back here in Fonda’s victory lane,” Mahaney told Mimi Lazzaro after his win. “It has been harder for me to win a regular show here than other times that we have been here, and I have been able to win.”
Other winners on Yurkewecz Auto Crushers Night were Chad Edwards (Swagger Factory Apparel Crate 602 Sportsman), Luke Horning (Algonkin Motel Pro Stocks), Jeremy Tyrrell (Montgomery County Office for Aging Inc. Limited Sportsman), Ken Hollenback (SOHC) and Slappy White (DOHC) in the Fonda Fair Four Cylinders.
During the intermission, the Canajoharie Eagles presented $600 to Ashley Abeling and the Fonda Speedway Kid’s Club to be used for giveaways for the kid’s club after they held a fundraiser in Memory of Jack Johnson.
Congratulations also goes out to the winner of the 50/50 on Saturday evening which was worth $2,336!
Fonda Speedway announcer Chris Moore started the Sunoco Modified feature saying, “Joe Kriss are you ready, Fonda Speedway are you ready (resulting in a huge roar from the crowd), it’s time to go racing 30-laps for the Sunoco Modifieds so Ladies & Gentleman clear the dance floor, freshen your glass, find the best seat in the house, because the Sunoco Modifieds are ready to dance.”
JaMike Sowle raced out to an early lead in the Sunoco Modified main event after starting on the outside pole with George Foley in tow. By lap eight Sowle was already in lap traffic with Mike Mahaney on the move into the top five after starting the event in the 11th starting position. The one and only yellow flag in the event flew on lap 11 for Dave Constantino who came to a stop in turn two.
On the restart, Sowle continued to lead with Mahaney advancing two positions after getting by Brian Pessolano and George Foley for the second position. At the halfway point in the event Sowle continued to lead followed by Mahaney, Foley, Michael Maresca, and Josh Hohenforst completing the top five.
While Sowle was running the outside groove on the speedway Mahaney stayed low in the turns and quickly caught the race leader. When Sowle slipped out of the groove in turn four on lap 19, Mahaney got under him for the lead and led the remaining laps for the victory. Sowle finished second followed by Maresca, eighth place starter Ronnie Johnson, and Foley.
“We have been struggling here at Fonda and working hard to try to adapt to the track,” Mahaney said in the Fuccillo Autoplex of Nelliston in Memory of Mike Cole Victory Lane. “I have a great group of guys on my crew and great sponsors that are behind me and I think we finally got it.”
The Swagger Factory Apparel Crate 602 Sportsman feature saw six caution flags slowing the 25-lap event with Nick Scavia the early race leader from his outside front row starting spot. Chad Edwards and Mark Mortensen started the event in the fourth row with Edwards in second and Mortensen in third when the caution came out on lap three.
On the restart, Edwards took the lead away from Scavia with Mortensen also trying to get by for second. Mortensen’s great run came to an end on lap 13 when a broken axle and other front-end damage forced him to the pit area. As Edwards pulled away on every restart to a big lead the attention turned to other drivers who started way back in the starting lineup but were making their way to the front quickly.
Those drivers included Brian Calabrese who started the event in the 22nd position, Payton Talbot who started back in the 21st position, and Addison Bowman who started last in the 27th position. Calabrese took the second position away from Scavia on a lap 14 restart but was no match for Edwards who went on to his third win of the season and the 12th of his career in the division on his Birthday in the John Kollar Motorsports #10%.
Calabrese, Scavia, Tim Hartman Jr., and Talbot completed the top five with Bowman gaining 21 positions to finish sixth.
“What a great night,” Edwards said in victory lane. “We’ve got a good piece here (pointing to his race car), we got to the front early, and this is the first time that I have ever won on my birthday.”
Six lead changes made the Algonkin Pro Stock feature one to remember with Jason Morrison the early race leader from his outside front row starting spot. Luke Horning started the event in the 10th position and moved into the third position on lap four and one lap later was the new second place car after getting by pole position starter Andy Graves.
On a lap five restart, Horning took over the race lead with 12th place starter Nick Stone in the second position and from this point on it was a game of cat and mouse between the two drivers. Stone took the lead during laps seven through 10, but Horning kept him in sight and took the lead back on lap 11 but only for one circuit.
The lead changed numerous times each lap as both drivers raced side by side for many laps ducking under and going around each other on both the inside and the outside. At the completion of lap 19, Stone and Horning were side by side for the lead and they stayed that way over the final lap with Horning winning the event by a nose when the checkered flag flew by only 0.043 sec. for his first win of the season and the 22nd time in his career in the division at Fonda.
Stone, eighth place starter Kenny Gates, 15th place starter Josh Coonradt, and Morrison completed the top five.
“We wrecked our car two weeks ago at Albany Saratoga and took our time putting it back together forcing us to miss the race here last week at Fonda,” Horning said in victory lane. “I saw Josh (Coonradt) running the outside here last week to get the win and said to myself I think we’ve got something for these guys. Nick (Stone) left me enough room to race tonight and that’s all that you can ask for.”
Jeremy Tyrrell led every lap of the Montgomery County Office for Aging Inc. Limited Sportsman 15-lap event for his second win of the season followed by fifth place starter Carter Gibbons, eighth place starter Stephen Gray, 11th place starter Jonathan Feagles, and seventh place starter Kyle Dingman.
Ken Hollenback continued his winning ways in the Fonda Fair Four Cylinder division as he was the overall winner of the 12-lap feature event in the SOHC class while Slappy White finished second overall for the win in the DOHC class. Brandon Tyler, Kerrie Hollenback, and Tyler White completed the top five overall. For both Ken Hollenback and Slappy White it was their fourth win of the 2021 season and the 59th and fourth career for Hollenback and White, respectively.
Next Saturday, May 29 a special event will take place as M.W. Roosevelt & Son/Roosevelt Towing & Recovery presents Dave Lape Tribute Night with Twin 22’s on the racing card for the Sunoco Modifieds. All other divisions will also be in action with racing starting at 7:00 p.m. A special ceremony honoring Dave Lape will also take place at the Fonda Speedway Hall of Fame & Museum starting at 3:00 p.m.
Since 1953, the “Track of Champions” Fonda Speedway has hosted the best in stock car racing. Under the management of BD Motorsports Media LLC, the speedway will operate weekly on Saturday nights from April through August plus several special events. Fonda Speedway is located on the Montgomery County Fairgrounds off New York State Thruway Exit No. 28 at 21 S. Bridge Street Fonda, NY 12068.
Fonda Speedway is on the web at www.thefondaspeedway.com. To learn more, call the office at 518.915.4395, like Fonda Speedway on Facebook www.facebook.com/thefondaspeedwy or follow the speedway on Twitter: @thefondaspdwy.
YURKEWECZ AUTO CRUSHERS NIGHT
SUNOCO MODIFIED FEATURE – 30-laps – MIKE MAHANEY, JaMike Sowle, Michael Maresca, Ronnie Johnson, George Foley, Adam McAuliffe, Jessica Friesen, Josh Hohenforst, Rocky Warner, Craig Hanson, Brian Pessolano, Jack Lehner, Bobby Varin, Rich Christman, Derrick McGrew Jr., Steve Akers, Brian Calabrese, Aaron Jacobs, Pep Corradi, Dave Constantino, Ancel Collins, Dylan Scribner, David Schilling DNS
1st win of 2021 and 4th career win for Mahaney.
Lap leaders – 1-18 Sowle, 19-30 Mahaney
Heat race winners – Jessica Friesen, Sowle, Pessolano
SWAGGER FACTORY APPAREL CRATE 602 SPORTSMAN FEATURE – 25-laps – CHAD EDWARDS, Brian Calabrese, Nick Scavia, Tim Hartman Jr., Payton Talbot, Addison Bowman, Dan Santabarbara, Ricky Quick, Aaron Burton, Tim Dwyer, Brian Borst, Griffen Mansmith, Michael McCallion, Troy Palmer, Bill August, Jason Reome, Troy Zilles, Chip Constantino, Dana Camenga, Cody Clark, Mark Mortensen, Brendan Gibbons, Tanner Warner, Kurtis Hohensheldt, Tony Farone, Mike Ketchum, Tucker O’Connor
3rd win of 2021 and 12th career win for Edwards.
Lap leaders – 1-3 Scavia, 4-25 Edwards
Heat race winners – Scavia, O’Connor, Santabarbara, Hartman Jr.
Consolation winner Talbot
Did not qualify – Shane Larman, Joe Orlando, Kathy Bellen, Jason Greco, Joe Geniti, Greg Havlichek, Brett Mortensen
Greco’s NAPA Hard Charger – Addison Bowman 21 positions from 27th to 6th
ALGONKIN MOTEL PRO STOCK FEATURE – 20-laps – LUKE HORNING, Nick Stone, Kenny Gates, Josh Coonradt, Jason Morrison, Ivan Joslin, Chuck Dumblewski, Bill Knapp, Jim Normoyle, Beau Ballard, Andy Graves, Randy Cosselman, Frank Hoard Jr., Kyle Hoard, Steve Cosselman, Shane Playford, Chuck McSpirit, Cliff Haslun, Terry Graves, Gary Silkey, AJ Walters, Devon Camenga, Chris Daughtry
1st win of 2021 and 22nd career win for Horning.
Lap leaders – 1-4 Morrison, 5-6 Horning, 7-10 Stone, 11 Horning, 12-18 Stone, 19-20 Horning
Heat race winners – Horning, Knapp, Graves
MONTGOMERY COUNTY OFFICE FOR AGING INC. LIMITED SPORTSMAN FEATURE – 15-laps – JEREMY TYRRELL, Carter Gibbons, Stephen Gray, Jonathan Feagles, Kyle Dingman, Clayton DuMond, Ryan Sweet, John Anderson, Lance Hill, Bill Port, Bob Rowback, John Young, Taylor LaPlante, Todd Morey DNS
2nd win of 2021 and 2nd career win for Tyrrell.
Heat race winners – Tyrrell, DuMond
FONDA FAIR FOUR CYLINDER FEATURE – 12-laps – KEN HOLLENBACK (SOHC), SLAPPY WHITE (DOHC), Brandon Tyler, Kerrie Hollenback, Tyler White, David Peek-Britten, Wayne Russell Jr., Riley Pedrick, Keith Tesiero, Billy Hillman, TJ Marlitt, John Napoli
4th win of 2021 and 59th career win for Hollenback.
4th win of 2021 and 4th career win for White.
Lap leaders – 1 Napoli, 2-3 Tyler, 4-12 Ken Hollenback