Sitterly Leads Gruel by Narrow Margin Heading into Race of Champions Weekend
OSWEGO, NY (September 5, 2014) – Oswego Speedway’s year-long Road to the Championship in the Novelis Supermodified and Pathfinder Bank Small Block Super divisions will come down to SUNOCO Race of Champions Weekend September 13-14.
The Race of Champions is the second oldest consecutively run auto racing event in the United States, second only to the Indianapolis 500. This year the RoC will not only be highlighted by the Sunoco Modified 200, but Oswego Speedway’s staple divisions will crown their champions across two days.
The weekend kicks off for Oswego’s regulars on Saturday, September 13 as the Pathfinder Bank Small Block Supers join the NEMA Midgets, NEMA Lites, and the RoC Sportsman.
Oswego’s SBS series will contend in a 50-lap, $1,000 to win main event, that will settle all point battles for the entire season.
Driving the Crow Motorsports No. 18, Andrew Schartner has held the SBS point lead all season long, and with a 95 point lead heading into September 13, Schartner will lock up the title by walking through the main gate.
Unlike the SBS division, the title of track champion in the headline Novelis Supermodified division is wide open with Otto Sitterly, Dave Gruel, Pat Lavery, and Randy Ritskes all having a mathematical shot at the championship.
The title will be decided on Sunday, September 14 with a 75 lap, $3,000 to win main event running off before the Sunoco Modified 200.
Six-time track champion Sitterly now holds a 13 point edge on Gruel for the championship. With one points paying main event win this season coming on May 24 in the Jim Shampine Memorial, Sitterly is coming off his fourth win in the prestigious Budweiser International Classic 200, looking to cap a dream season with a record tying seventh Oswego Speedway supermodified championship.
Should Sitterly come through with the title he will tie Bentley Warren and Jim Shampine on the Oswego Speedway all-time supermodified champions list.
Gruel, who held the championship lead briefly in the mid-season, had a rough outing in the Classic, but is looking to rebound at Race of Champions. Without a main event win this season, a total of ten top ten finishes and five top five runs has been enough consistency to keep Gruel in the race for the title with Sitterly right down to the bitter end.
Lavery and Ritskes complete the top four positions in the championship, each trailing Sitterly by over 45 points. While mathematically they each have a chance at the title, both would need significant help to pull it off.
Two-time Oswego Speedway champion Joe Gosek rounds out the top five with David Danzer, Michael Barnes, Joey Payne, Tim Devendorf, and Michael Muldoon in the top ten spots.
Kody Graham is just outside the top ten; 20 points from a banquet position in November.
SUNOCO Race of Champions Weekend opens its racing program Saturday, September 13 with grandstand gates opening at 3:30 p.m. The racing action will start that Saturday at 5 p.m.
Sunday the action continues with grandstand gates opening at 10:15 a.m. and qualifying to hit the Speedway at Noon.
The Sunoco Modified 200 is scheduled to take the green flag at 4:15 p.m. on Sunday, September 14. The 75 lap Novelis Supermodified main will take place prior to the 200 lap Modified nightcap.
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For more information on Race of Champions Weekend visit www.raceofchampions.net.
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.