Mike McVetta Leads the Way at ISMA Return to Lorain County Speedway
Amherst, OH – June 26, 2015…Thirty-one years ago the International SuperModified Association ran their first race event at Lorain County Speedway. The 22 of Doug Saunier of Navarre, OH was the winner of the 1984 100-lapper. Fast forward to 2015 when ISMA returned to Lorain County and saw young NASA engineer Michael McVetta win the Friday night 50-lapper, driving to a career-first victory. McVetta, ironically just happens to be Saunier’s son-in-law. It was all the more rewarding for McVetta who had crashed heavily at Oswego Speedway on June 13 and was nursing an injured finger from the incident. Unfortunately, McVetta also saw is first victory marred at race end when a broken watts link sent him into the first turn with a damaged car.
Getting a lift to victory lane as his car went on the hook, McVetta was all smiles despite the fact he faced another major repair session, as he spoke, “This is unbelievable. I want to thank all those who stepped up and helped us get back on track. There are so many to thank. Acme Racing gave us a big hand and gave us a rear end. Euphoria Vapor came over one night at ten o’clock and helped us set up the car. The Fourth Turn Crazies; they are always there for us. I can’t say enough about Dave Ennis and his family. They do everything for us. Thanks to Ridgeway photos. Thanks to my family, my sponsors and friends. I can’t thank them all enough. I couldn’t do this without them.”
Rob Summers, who might have garnered a win had things played out differently said, “I thought I had it for sure there. The twenty-two did what he had to do. He kind of put me toward the wall one time and toward the infield another. I could have probably put my foot into it but we would have probably had two wrecked race cars. For us to get a second place is good because the beginning of this year has been tough for us. I’m happy for the whole team.”
Dave Shullick Jr., who started back in fourteenth commented, “I just started a long way back. I had a good car. I learned a few things tonight about where the track wants us to run. If we race tomorrow, we’ll be pretty good.”
Despite some ominous weather forecasts for the weekend, Lorain County Speedway was able to finish their planned activities just before a light rain beginning to fall.
Lichty in a Lickety Split Lap-
Twenty-five ISMA supermodified competitors filled the pits hoping for the chance to finish at least the first of the two-days of racing scheduled. Time trials were won off without a hitch as Canadian Mike Lichty broke the existing Lorain track record with a 11.798 lap. Dave Shullick Jr and Rob Summers were also under the previous record of 11.858 followed by Otto Sitterly and Timmy Jedrzejek in the top five trialers.
Danny Bowes, McVetta and Danny Shirey won the qualifiers as the program moved by at a rapid, uninterrupted clip with rain showers looming not far away.
The Shoe Honored-
Just prior to the start of the ISMA feature Dave Shullick Sr was honored as the winningest driver in Lorain’s history with the dedication of the new Clubhouse on the backstretch named after him. Saunier was also interviewed as the last ISMA winner at Lorain County Speedway.
McVetta Takes Command at Start-
The 50-lap ISMA event hit the track running just after 9 pm with McVetta and Dave McKnight leading the 25-car field to green. McVetta immediately took control and never really was threatened despite several skirmishes that slowed the event with yellow flags.
Jeff Locke brought out the first flag on lap 3 and was the first race casualty followed by Rich Reid and Charlie Schultz.
McVetta took off on the restart trailed by Trent Stephens, McKnight, Rob Summers, Jon McKennedy, Ben Seitz and Dave Shullick Jr.
Yellow fell again in lap 13 when Moe Lilje, driving the Vic Miller machine, came around in turn two. Lilje took the car pit side and was out of the race. Tim Ice was also called in at this juncture for leaking fluids and he too, declared out for the night.
On the green, the yellow and red number 22 gunned it and pulled away from Stephens, McKnight, Summers, McKennedy, Shirey, Shullick, Seitz and Timmy Jedrzejek, the Oswego winner on June 13.
McVetta put Kevin Jaycox Jr. down a lap on the 22nd circuit and gained some real estate and Stephens and the others battled by the Jaycox, Jr. as the halfway mark approached and passed.
On lap 29, Alison Cumens, who had also met with the foam blocks at Oswego on June 13, spun trying to get by the 5. Just as the green flew, Shirey was nudged out of sixth place and into the infield.
McVetta Staves off Stephens-
McVetta, after each yellow was able to pull away from Trent Stephens as McKnight held off a charging duo of Summers and Shullick. Summers moved into third on lap 33. One lap later Alison Cumens again flew the yellow in turn four and restarted at the tail of the field.
Once more McVetta was able to take control pursued by Stephens, Summers, McKnight, Shullick, McKennedy, Otto Sitterly, Seitz, Jedrzejek and Mike Lichty.
The final slow down came on lap 36 when AJ Lesiecki drove into the infield and back out, still seeing the flag unfurled from the starter.
With McVetta seeing a career-first victory just 13 laps ahead, he once again gave it his all as Summers and Shullick hounded Stephens who still held second. On lap 38 Summers made his move around Stephens as Shullick also came by for third.
Pressure Cooker for McVetta-
With ten to go, Summers was definitely closing with Shullick tacked right on his rear. McVetta now was holding on for dear life as the five to go was given and the lapped car of Jaycox was about to create an obstacle as Summers and Shullick were applying all the pressure they could muster. Stephens lost fourth to Shullick’s teammate Otto Sitterly shortly afterwards. McKennedy also moved by the Stephens in the waning laps.
With two to go, McVetta, Summers, and Shullick, Jr. were nose to tail, McVetta was able to gain a couple of feet as the white flag well. As the checkers fell for McVetta, the crowd gave its approval at the newest winner, but the drama wasn’t over quite yet. McVetta’s car was stopped just off turn one as flames erupted from the car. He was out of the car in an instant and quickly rolled to extinguish any possible harm.
Summers and Shullick finished second and third with Sitterly and McKennedy rounding out the top five.
Oswego Speedway Champ Talks-
Sitterly, coming off two non-winged wins at Oswego the previous week, one a dead heat, had this to say about his fourth place. “It wasn’t too bad of a run. The car was pretty tight. It got a little bit better when we were in an open track, especially if I was behind other cars. It was just pretty tight most of the race. It was a really tough place to pass. I talked to Dave (Shullick Sr) earlier in the night and he sort of told me a couple lines to run. I tried a couple of things he told me. And, more than anything some of the guys just didn’t come off the bottom. Once DJ went around and showed me the outside, I learned from what he did and was able to make a few passes on the outside.”
Jon McKennedy Describes His Race-
Jon McKennedy was not displeased with fifth. “We had a decent day. We pushed most of the race so it was tough to maneuver but overall it was a good day. It’s a tough little place. The car has to be turning just right to be able to pass. We’re in one piece and have a top five. Hopefully we’ll get it in tomorrow.”
ISMA Event #5-Summercade Night 1
- Lorain County Speedway – Amherst, OH
- June 26, 2015
- Time Trials – new track record set by Mike Lichty 11.798
- Heat 1: Dan Bowes, Charlie Shultz, Ben Seitz, Rob Summers, Ed Witkum, Alison Cumens, Moe Lilje, Jon Henes
- Heat 2: Mike McVetta, Jon McKennedy, Timmy Jedrzejek, Dave McKnight, Dave Shullick Jr., Ryan Coniam, Tim Ice, Jeff Locke
- Heat 3: Danny Shirey, Trent Stephens, Otto Sitterly, Mike Lichty, Jim Paler, Mark Sammut, AL Lesiecki, Kevin Jaycox
- Dave and Buster’s Summercade ISMA 50: 1. Michael McVetta (22), 2. Rob Summers (74), 3. Dave Shullick Jr. (95), 4. Otto Sitterly (7), 5. Jon McKennedy (61), 6. Trent Stephens (19), 7. Ben Seitz (17), 8. Eddie Witkum (21), 9. Timmy Jedrzejek (97), 10. Mike Lichty (84), 11. Ryan Coniam (46), 12. Danny Shirey (49), 13. Mark Sammut (78), 14. Dan Bowes (25), 15. Jim Paller (64), 16. AJ Lesiecki (77), 17. Alison Cumens (39), 18. Kevin Jaycox Jr. (5), 19. Dave McKnight (70), 20. Jon Henes (36), 21. Tim Ice (65), 22. Moe Lilje (11), 23. Jeff Locke (37), 24. Rich Reid (48), 25. Charlie Schultz (71).
51 Caution laps were run
- ISMA Free Bike Giveaway was sponsored by Reed’s Salvage of Grafton, OH
- Hard Charger Award, sponsored by the 4th Turn Crazies – Dave Shullick Jr.
- Radical Race Gear ISMA Lap Leader – Michael McVetta
DAVE & BUSTER’S SUMMERCADE SCHEDULE:
Saturday, June 27 Gates open at 10:00 AM & Racing at 7:00 PM. Dave & Buster’s SUMMERCADE 2015 • ISMA SUPERMODIFIED 100 LAP NIGHT OF THUNDER (ISMA-100, MOD-40) presented by M.J. Griffith Paving
Ticket information is available on www.LorainCountySpeedway.com as are directions, etc.
Lorain County is located just 25 miles west of Cleveland in Amherst, Ohio, just ½ mile south of the intersections of Route 58 and 113. The address is 9100 Leavitt Road, Elyria, OH 44035.