SWEENEY RUSH LATE MODELS TO RETURN FOR 3RD STRAIGHT YEAR
November 17, 2016
(By Mike Leone)
(Bradford, PA)...In August 2015, the Old Bradford Speedway returned to life under the ownership of Norm Asel. The Asel Family completed their first full season of ownership at the northern Pennsylvania quarter-mile dirt track in 2016 featuring the Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Late Models. Asel recently informed RUSH that not only will the Late Models return for the third straight season under the RUSH banner, but will add the Sweeney RUSH Pro Mods as a weekly division on Sunday evenings in 2017!
The Sweeney RUSH Pro Mod division debuted this past season running weekly on Saturday nights at Stateline Speedway in Busti, New York. The Pro Mods feature a standard E-Mod-type car utilizing the GM 604 or 602 crate engine on RUSH 91 pump gas with $135 sealed, spec RUSH Bilstein Bandits Shocks. Fifteen Pro Mod events were run at Stateline as Justin Carlson won the $3,500 Sweeney Weekly Series championship, while Zach Johnson won the $300 "Futures Cup". Over $20,000 in cash point funds and contingencies was distributed for the inaugural season.
"I had been wanting to add an open wheel Modified-type division at Bradford," explained Asel. "I was keeping an eye on the RUSH Pro Mod division at Stateline and felt it was the way to go for 2017. I've had a lot of the racers approach me even this past season about running them at Bradford. There's going to be several new racers coming on board for 2017 and I'm looking forward to teaming with Stateline to provide these racers a second night to compete and go after RUSH points."
"We have to thank the Asels for not only continuing to run our Late Model division, but allowing us to grow the Pro Mod class," stated RUSH Director Vicki Emig. "We had hoped to be able to give the Pro Mod racers the ability to compete in some additional events in 2017 and this announcement does just that. It's possible for a few more events to be added as well."
"It's great that Bradford has stepped up to give the RUSH Pro Mods a second home," said David Scott, son of Stateline owners Jim and Jean Scott. "The crate program with the tires and the motor puts everybody on the same playing field. There ended up being 10 full-time legal RUSH Pro Mods at Stateline plus we knew of several new cars planning on joining the class already and this announcement should spur the growth even more. I really think this class is going to take off."
Veteran racer Scott Gurdak competed in the RUSH Pro Mod division at Stateline where he won two features and the track championship. Gurdak battled down to the wire with Carlson for the Sweeney Pro Mod crown, but came up 15 points shy and earned $2,000 in point money. Gurdak is a big proponent of the class, and will also continue to run his RUSH Late Model in 2017. Gurdak is now expected to do double duty at both tracks!
Once again in 2017, RUSH Late Model member racers will be able to participate at Bradford and be eligible for all of the programs including the Sweeney Weekly Series Championship, the Pace Performance "Summer Chase", along with the Bilstein Bandits and the "Futures Cup" for those eligible racers. Member racers will battle for the "Track Pack Bonus" with $300 going to the driver that accumulates the most RUSH points at Bradford, $200 to second, $150 for third, $100 for fourth, and $50 for fifth. Contingency prizes will then be posted for those racers in sixth through eighth in the RUSH member points.
While membership is not mandatory to compete in any RUSH-sanctioned event, membership also include a $100,000 excess participant accident policy, which is over and above drivers' health insurance and speedways' participant accident policy.
In the 2016 RUSH Late Model "Track Pack Bonus" at Bradford, Damian Bidwell earned the most points at the track and will receive $300 at the RUSH awards banquet on January 21. Brad Mesler ($200), W.L. Stile ($150), Chad Silleman ($100), and Joe Chamberlain ($50) will also receive monies for finishing second through fifth in RUSH points at Bradford.
Bradford has a long history of stock car racing dating back to 1954. In 1958, noted legend Junior Johnson won a NASCAR Grand National Series event at the speedway. The natural clay at Bradford runs as much as 18-feet deep! Below that natural clay is some of the highest-grade oil deposits on the face of the earth. It's called "Penn Grade" oil and its superior lubricating qualities made the Bradford Oil Fields the richest in the country back in the 1870s and 1880s. At the Bradford Speedway, the clay is there because of the track's elevation. At 2,160 feet above sea level, it's the highest-elevation track east of the Rocky Mountains!
The Old Bradford Speedway is located at 330 Summit Road, Bradford, PA16701. For more information, call general manager Jeff Gardner at 814-598-9599 and check out their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/theoldbradfordspeedway.
RUSH Late Model 2016 marketing partners include Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC, Pace Performance, Hoosier Tire, Bilstein Shocks, Sunoco Race Fuels, Bazell Race Fuels, Insinger Performance, MSD Performance, Maxima Racing Oil, Jones Racing Products, Alternative Power Sources, Precise Racing Products, ARbodies, TBM Brakes, K&N Filters, Lincoln Electric, FK Rod Ends, Velocita-USA, Classic Ink USA, Rocket Chassis, Bobby Lake Motorsports High Gear Speed Shop, CrateInsider.com, B.R.A.K.E.S., RockAuto.com, and Valley Fashions.
E-mail can be sent to the RUSH Racing Series at email@example.com and snail mail to 4368 Route 422, Pulaski, PA16143. Office phone is 724-964-9300 and fax is 724-964-0604. The RUSH Racing Series website is w