OSWEGO, NY (August 15, 2013) – Since 2008, only two different drivers have won Novelis Supermodified track championships at Oswego Speedway.
On Saturday, as a part of Cystic Fibrosis Awareness Night presented by Bosco & Geers Food Market and Oswego County Federal Credit Union, Joe Gosek and Otto Sitterly will continue their back and forth battle for ‘Steel Palace’ supremacy.
Sitterly has claimed five Speedway championships since 2006 with only Greg Furlong and Joe Gosek standing in his way in 2007 and 2011.
With three feature victories during the 2013 Speedway campaign, Sitterly appeared to be in the driver’s seat for a sixth track title. However, a broken rear end part sent Sitterly into the outside wall last Saturday, resulting in a 21st place finish.
Sitterly’s misfortune turned into Gosek’s gain, as the No. 00 finished second behind Shaun Gosselin to surge into the point lead over Sitterly by a slim seven markers.
Just as in Gosek’s 2011 championship season, the two-time Speedway champion has yet to win a main event in 2013 but is the only driver to finish in the top ten in every Supermodified main event this season.
Gosek and Sitterly, who have combined for 33 Supermodified wins at the Speedway since 2006, are left now with just two championship events remaining to settle the score.
Behind the front running championship duo is a host of other Supermodified shoes looking to gain valuable point positions.
Dave Gruel, who has one feature win and four top five finishes, currently rides third in the No. 50 machine. Gruel has had his share of misfortune in 2013 but has managed to make the most of it, rebounding each week with consistent top ten finishes.
Gosselin bounced back to fourth in the standings one week ago after blowing an engine in the No. 26 during warm-ups for the Mr. Supermodified event on August 3. Gosselin had run as high as third in the standings, and with last week’s first career victory he now finds himself only three points shy of Gruel for a top three position.
After riding outside the top ten in points for most of the early portion of the season, Pat Lavery stands fifth in the championship battle in No. 22. After battling to the bitter end for the track title one year ago, Lavery has fallen a touch short in 2013, but is likely still smiling after collecting his first Supermodified victory in June of this year.
Feature winner Dave Danzer is sixth in the Supermodified point standings ahead of Michael Barnes, Michael Muldoon, Dan Connors Jr., and Brandon Bellinger.
The battle for the 2013 Supermodified Rookie of the Year title will likely go right down to the wire as Tony Steiner leads Clayton Brewer III by just 32-points.
While Gosek and Sitterly are once again leading the way in the Supermodified division, at first glance the SBS series looked as though it would once again be a battle between Russ Brown and Mike Bond.
For the majority of the season Brown has led the way with Bond looking to play catch-up. However, a string of bad luck for Bond has dropped him to third in the standings behind Jason Simmons.
Like Gosek, Brown has yet to win a main event in 2013 but has secured a total of eight top five finishes, which is three more than any other driver. With a 53-point lead on Simmons with only two events remaining, Brown is looking to keep his nose clean on his quest for Speedway championship number five.
After nabbing his first career Oswego Speedway win in May of this season, Simmons has put together quite the year in the No. 98. Nine top ten finishes has propelled the Team Tapout shoe to a runner-up position in the standings, as he looks for some help in trying to chase down Brown for the championship crown.
Despite ending his heat race on his head last weekend, Bond was able to continue on in the main event and cross the line with a 13th place finish which has kept him in consideration for the championship. A year that started once again with championship aspirations has come onto hard times for the No. 74, but Bond knows no quit and will attempt whatever it takes to try and claw back into contention for championship number four.
JJ Andrews and Kreig Heroth are tied for fourth in the championship hunt, only three points behind Bond.
Andrews has one main event win this season, while defending champ Heroth joins Brown with the most top ten finishes of the year at ten.
Andrew Schartner, Rob Pullen, Dalton Doyle, Jack Patrick, and Jon Tesoriero complete the top ten in the championship order.
Saturday night’s racing will see pit gates open at 2pm with hot laps beginning and grandstands opening at 4pm. The night’s first green flag will wave at 6:30pm.
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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.