AJ Catanzaro 2010
Old Bridge Township’s Raceway Park
Kessler, Rojas Claim E-Town Victories
By Scott Lukaitis Photo by Lukaitis Photo.com
ENGLISHTOWN, NJ AUG 12
The dog days of summer are upon us and motocross is in full swing at Raceway Park. The hot summer days make for a battle of the elements as well as a battle of man and machine. Gone are the days of loamy moist track condition instead they are replaced by hard packed dusty conditions. The Mickey Kessler prepared track held up well despite the 90 degree temperatures and in turn those in attendance were treated to excellent racing in all classes.
The first 125 “Lites” Expert moto saw Fox/ Dragon backed Honda rider Adam Blessing get the early lead over the rest of the field. Trailing Blessing hot on his heels were riders Ronnie Stewart, Mt Holly KTM rider Ryan Gainey, Suzuki mounted Henry Rojas and Goodfellow’s Honda rider Onorino Fascelli. Working through the moto Blessing continued to lead but Kessler was on a roll eventually working past Fascelli and Gainey into third. By motos end it was Blessing with the victory followed by Rojas and Fascelli who got back around Gainey and Kessler for third.
In the second “Lites” moto Kessler grabbed the early lead nailing down the holeshot followed by Stewart and Blessing. Honda mounted Bryan Wallace was catching up to the leading trio and would eventually start knocking on the door of Blessing. Stewart got by Kessler and tried to run away but Kessler would get back by and hold on to the lead until the end taking the victory followed across the line by Stewart and Wallace. Kessler’s 5-1 motos would get him the overall for the day followed by Blessing’s 1-5 and Onorino Fascelli in third 3-4.
The first 250 “Motocross” Expert moto Blessing got the holeshot followed by Kessler and Fascelli with Kessler going by them all on the way up the staircase and into the lead. Just one lap in Stewart worked his way past Blessing and set off to catch Kessler. Stewart got by Kessler and set off to take the moto win. He was followed across the line by Rojas who worked his way through a fast pack of Experts to take second and Kessler held on for third.
The second moto saw Stewart grab the early lead followed by Rojas, Fascelli and Kessler. Stewart began to stretch out his lead as Rojas and Fascelli began to scrap for position. Gainey was in fourth watching the race in front of him unfold. While out front cruising to his second moto win of the day Stewart put his leg down wrong in a corner and had to pull off the track in extreme pain injuring his ankle and could not continue. Rojas was handed the moto win and overall win with his 2-1 motos. Fascelli’s 4-2 netted him second overall and Bryan Wallace’s 5-4 gave him third overall. The next event at Raceway Park will be the 15th annual Vet and Vintage Reunion on September 1st.
When the AMA was looking for a Northeast point to take its 2007 National series, Englishtown was the most logical choice. The facility was the perfect venue and their brand new road course would be the site of the inaugural event. But for a Supermoto to be exciting there has to be a dirt section as well. So practice track designer Carl Anderson was called in to create two exciting motocross style jump sections that received rave reviews from the competitors. Since the series is still in its infancy the pits are an open style with no extra ticket required to get up close and personal with the men (and woman) and their machines. The series is contested by all of the major manufacturers and the entry list reads like a who’s who of motorcycle racing. From motocrossers like David Pingree and Jeff Ward, freestylers like Carey Hart, World Gp riders like Kurt Nicoll and the man behind Troy Lee Designs, Troy Lee himself this sport has it all.
Sunday’s event was lightly attended due to the rain in the forecast for the afternoon but those who came to the race saw excellent competition in all three professional classes.
Hot Wheels Supermoto Lites
Graves Motorsports Yamaha’s Brandon Currie took the class win after taking the pole in his qualifier. He grabbed the early lead running Troy Lee Designs Honda rider wide in the first turn and never looked back. If he did get the chance to see behind him his goggles would have been full of Pingree who kept the Yamaha rider in his sights ready to make the move when Currie would make a mistake. That mistake never came and Currie went on to take the win with Pingree in second and Monster Kawasaki rider Matt Abbott in third.
M&R Supermoto Unlimited
Factory Aprilia Rip It Energy Racing’s Ben Carlson was the class of the Unlimited field taking the advantage from the pole and stretching his lead to a multi second advantage before backing it down to a close race by the end. Factory HMC KTM teammates Kurt Nicoll and Johnny Lewis rounded out the top three.
AMA Supermoto Premier Class
Although the forecasted rain held off for most of the day, by the time the premier class got started there was a light but steady drizzle coming down. Troy Lee Designs Honda rider Cassidy Anderson grabbed the early lead only to throw it away in the first slippery dirt section. Anderson’s teammate Jeff Ward and Graves Motorsports Yamaha mounted Mark Burkhart showed the rest of the field that this was to be their race eventually pulling out to a 20+ second lead. Ward and Burkhart battled each other tooth and nail as the track conditions deteriorated. Burkhart would go on to take the victory 4+ seconds over Ward with factory KTM rider Troy Herfoss rounding out the podium.
It looks like Supermoto racing is here to stay in the Northeast. With tight racing and exciting action it appears to be around for awhile. Check it out next time it’s around.
Old Bridge Twp. Raceway Park
Loretta Lynn’s Area Qualifier
A Tale of 2 Days
By Scott Lukaitis/ photo by Lukaitisphoto.com
ENGLISHTOWN, N.J. APR 14/15, 2007
Two words say it all. Loretta Lynn’s. The road to the amateur nationals at Loretta Lynn’s Dude Ranch in August begins many months before. If you want to race against the 42 best riders in your class you must start in March and April and do well in the local area qualifiers from there you go on to the regional and finally the big show.
One the weekend of April 14th and 15th for the first time in its 32 year history Raceway Park played host to an area qualifier. With the weather forecast for 2 entirely different days riders were going to have to contend with all that nature could throw out them.
Saturday’s program went off under sunny skies and cool temperatures but the racing was anything but cool. Several riders make the long trip to New Jersey in search of their National Championship. Dade City Florida Honda rider Oscar Diaz showed impressive speed by finishing fourth in the MX Lites “A” class and winning the Motocross “A” class. Also taking the long trip were the Medaglia brothers Tyler and Jeremy from Ontario Canada. Jeremy won both the Motocross and MX Lites “B” stock classes on his Yamaha while Suzuki mounted Tyler was the winner of the “A” Lites class and the non-qualifying Open A class.
Sunday’s weather was the complete opposite. Overnight a powerful Nor’Easter blew in bringing with it torrential rains and winds with gusts up to 50 miles an hour. The storm which encompassed the entire east coast caused widespread flooding and even temporarily closed one of the roads leaving the track. But motocross runs rain or shine and although not all classes had enough to run several classes braved the conditions and ran the moto. Due to the track and weather conditions a one moto format was run and practice was cancelled. Riders were given a hot lap to check the track out before their moto. The track was shortened due to safety concerns and racing was started. One of the best races of the muddy afternoon was the MX Lites “C” Modified in which Kawasaki mounted Zak Klaptosky made a last ditch pass on leader and fellow Kawasaki rider Kyle Thompson to take the victory. Local Suzuki rider Frank Lettieri was a double class winner on Sunday taking the victory in both the Super Mini 12-15 and MX Lites Schoolboy 14-16 class.
Good luck to all of those riders who made the cut and will go on to the Regional.
In the 30 years of championship racing at Loretta Lynn’s several NJ racers have won championships. Here they are:
BRIAN CARROLL. Vineland, NJ
BRUCE DENGLER. Chatworth, NJ
1992: Senior Plus 40
JASON LAWRENCE. Estell Manor, NJ
2001: 85cc Stock 12-13
2004: 125 B Modified
2004: 250 Open B Modified
2005: 125 A Pro Sport
PASQUALE MORROCCO. Voorhees, NJ
2003: 125 C Modified
2003: 125 C Stock
JESSE PIERCE. Clarksburg, NJ
2009: 250 C Modified
LUKE RENZLAND. Hewitt, NJ
2010: Schoolboy 1 12-16 B/C
RAY SOMMO. Gillette, NJ
1983: 85cc Stock 14-15
Information courtesy RacerX.
See every National Champion in the 30 year history HERE.
Old Bridge Township Raceway Park
Pee Wee MX & Youth Quad Series
Englishtown, N.J., May 26, 2007
4-6 50 Stock (PW): 1. Shawn Rothstein (Oth); 2. Ricci Randanella (Oth); 3. Devin Kusmider (Ktm); 4. Logan Leitzel (Oth); 5. Tyler Carr (Hon).
4-6 50 Oil Injected (PW): 1. Devin Kusmider Ktm); 2. David Albertson (Oth); 3. Scott Spruill, Jr. (Ktm); 4. Steven Moquin (Ktm); 5. Shawn Rothstein (Oth).
7-8 50 Oil Injected (PW): 1. Joseph Mancini (Oth); 2. Jamis Perrotta (Ktm).
4-6 XR/CRF/TTR 50 (PW): 1. Tyler Carr (Hon); 2. Ryan Treveliese (Ktm); 3. Troy Milne (Hon); 4. George Gonzalez (Hon); 5. Robert Moore (Hon).
7-8 XR/CRF/TTR 50 (PW): 1. Trevor Pritchard (Oth); 2. Mitchell Reed (Hon); 3. Joseph Mancini (Oth); 4. Abbie Faccone (Hon); 5. Tyler Nichols (Hon).
4-8 Open 50 (2nd class ) (PW): 1. Trevor Pritchard (Oth); 2. Shawn Rothstein (Oth); 3. Ricci Randanella (Oth); 4. Alexander Guerrierie (Ktm); 5. Jacob Keane (Ktm).
7-8 50 Stock (PW): 1. Alexander Guerrierie (Ktm); 2. Trevor Pritchard (Oth); 3. Gage Solis (Oth); 4. Sean Patterson (Ktm); 5. Jacob Keane (Ktm).
4-8 50 Stock (QUAD): 1. Frank Bason (Oth); 2. Dale Raven (Oth); 3. Andrew Jacobs (Suz); 4. Jake Policastro (Suz); 5. Gabriel Gonzalez (Oth).
6-11 70 Production (QUAD): 1. Roy Gendron (Oth); 2. Lillo Paxia (Oth).
8-15 90 Production (QUAD): 1. Ryan Perkowski (Hon); 2. Nichoals Bassista (Hon); 3. Taylor Johnson (Xtr); 5. Nijah Jacobs (Oth).