OSWEGO, NY (August 27, 2013) – Official on track action during Budweiser International Classic Weekend at Oswego Speedway takes the green flag on Friday with Corr-Pak Merchandising ‘First Round Friday’ at the ‘Steel Palace.’
Friday will see a flurry of activity throughout the entire day with hot laps running from 11:30am through 4:30pm as drivers in the Novelis Supermodified, Pathfinder Bank SBS, and RoC Modified divisions look to get valuable track time before qualifications at 6pm.
The always exciting first round of Novelis Supermodified time trials for the 57th annual Budweiser International Classic 200 will be the first order of business at 6pm, as a total of 14 drivers will lock themselves into the richest Supermodified race in the world on Friday night.
Time trials for the 2012 International Classic were blistering and historic, as 24 of the 37 entrants timed in below the 17-second bracket, a new record.
Pat Lavery and Mike Lichty qualified on the front row in 2012, making Lavery once again a potential pole candidate in 2013.
Lichty has not officially announced whether or not he has a ride for this year’s running of the Classic, but his ride from one year ago will be driven by Ohio ace Dave Shullick Jr. this season.
Shullick will see if he can once again wheel the Nicotra Racing No. 2 Supermodified to another front row position here in ’13.
Odds makers are looking at Bob Bond, in the Four Sevens Motorsports No. 47, as another potential threat for the pole position. Bond has only had the car out twice this season, but each time laid down laps in the 16.4 second range.
Last season the pole was set by Lavery at 16.242 seconds, making a possible track record run under the 16.212 mark seem enticing.
Doug Didero set that track record in the Xtreme Chassis No. 3 back in 2009.
Qualifying on the pole for the International Classic is a prize earned by a select few.
Since the modern era of the Supermodified Classic in 1961, only 27 different drivers have qualified on the pole including six Canadian runners. Over that span the race has been won from the pole position 14 times.
While qualifying on the front row for the International Classic is a feat sought by many, locking into the show on Friday will be another major accomplishment. In doing so, drivers will not have to worry about timing again during second round trials on Sunday at noon.
Last year the cut off for the Top 14 positions was a lap of 16.612 seconds, set by eventual champion Otto Sitterly.
Following Supermodified time trials on Friday will be qualifying runs for the Bud Light SBS Classic 75.
Unlike in recent years, a greater emphasis is being placed on time trials for the Small Block Classic this season, as the six fastest drivers will be locked into the front six positions for their 75-lap Classic run on Saturday night. Those six drivers will then be re-ordered based on year-long handicap for the front six starting positions.
Mike Bond ran a sub 19-second lap earlier this season in a qualifying heat race meaning that the SBS track record of 19.081 seconds set by Brian Sobus could be in jeopardy.
Qualifying in the front six positions will be crucial as 30+ Small Block Super racers look to earn the right to be called Classic champion this weekend.
Back on the Friday schedule this season will be the Race of Champions Modifieds with a 100-lap special on tap to end the evening.
Matt Hirschman is no doubt the odds on favorite as he has won both RoC Modified events at the Speedway this season, as the ground pounders make their stapled return to Budweiser International Classic Weekend.
Budweiser International Classic Week runs from August 28-September 1 with the Race of Champions Asphalt Modified 100 joining ‘Fast 14’ Supermodified time trials on August 30. Supermodified time trials will begin on August 30 at 6pm.
The August 31 line-up features the final round of the Shea Concrete ‘Steel Palace’ ISMA SuperSeries with the Bud Light ISMA SuperNationals 60, the Bud Light SBS Classic 75, and the ATQMRA TQ Midget Classic. Race time on Saturday, August 31 is 5pm.
Second round Supermodified time trials, the Bud Light B-Main, and the Budweiser International Classic 200 will all take place on Sunday, September 1. Round two time trials will take the green at noon with the International Classic scheduled to take the green at approximately 3pm.
For more information on Oswego Speedway and Budweiser International Classic Weekend visit online at www.oswegospeedway.com, FOLLOW on Twitter @OswegoSpeedway, or LIKE on Facebook at www.facebook.com/OswegoSpeedway.
International Classic Pole Award Winners (1961 – 2012)
1961 – Gordon Johncock: 21.04
1962 – Dave Paul: 20.63
1963 – Ken Bartholomew: 20.72
1964 – Sam Sessions: 20.41
1965 – Nolan Swift: 20.44
1966 – Johnny Benson: 19.81
1967 – Bentley Warren: 19.96
1968 – Todd Gibson: 19.47
1969 – Bentley Warren: 19.29
1970 – Jim Shampine: 18.73
1971 – Ken Andrews: 18.79
1972 – Jim Shampine: 18.561
1973 – Jim Shampine: 18.592
1974 – Jim Winks: 18.575
1975 – Fred Graves: 18.247
1976 – Fred Graves: 18.228
1977 – Jim Shampine: 17.928
1978 – Chuck Ciprich: 17.919
1979 – Jim Shampine: 17.914
1980 – Ed Bellinger Jr.: 17.646
1981 – Doug Heveron: 17.687
1982 – Dave Shullick Sr.: 17.919
1983 – Warren Coniam: 17.648
1984 – Ed Bellinger Jr.: 17.607
1985 – Dave Shullick Sr.: 17.336
1986 – Bentley Warren: 17.454
1987 – Doug Heveron: 17.402
1988 – Bentley Warren: 17.391
1989 – Bentley Warren: 16.861
1990 – Bentley Warren: 17.050
1991 – Joe Gosek: 17.243
1992 – Gary Morton: 17.037
1993 – Dave Shullick Sr.: 17.002
1994 – Pat Abold: 16.931
1995 – Russ Wood: 16.775
1996 – Doug Didero: 16.681
1997 – Doug Didero: 17.061
1998 – Mike Ordway: 16.981
1999 – Pat Abold: 17.093
2000 – Greg Furlong: 16.650
2001 – Dave McKnight: 16.966
2002 – Russ Wood: 16.926
2003 – Mike Ordway: 16.673
2004 – Mike Ordway: 16.642
2005 – Greg Furlong: 16.601
2006 – Greg Furlong: 16.377
2007 – Doug Didero: 16.508
2008 – Joe Gosek: 16.865
2009 – Doug Didero: 16.212
2010 – Pat Lavery: 16.523
2011 – Randy Ritskes: 16.459
2012 – Pat Lavery: 16.242
About Oswego Speedway: Oswego Speedway, a sports entertainment company, is a 5/8 mile semi-banked pavement racing oval located off the shores of Lake Ontario in scenic Oswego, NY. Oswego Speedway has been a continuously run weekly racing venue since August, 1951. The premier open-wheel pavement short track cars in the world, Supermodifieds, run weekly at Oswego Speedway making Oswego the only weekly Supermodified racing venue in the world. The Small Block Supermodifieds accompany the full blown Supers on a weekly Saturday night schedule which runs from May through September. Oswego Speedway is mentioned in racing circles as the “Indy of the East,” as no fewer than a dozen past and present competitors have competed at the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway including Mario Andretti, arguably the greatest driver of all time, two-time Indy 500 champion Gordon Johncock, along with former International Classic Champions Bentley Warren, Joe Gosek, and Davey Hamilton.