Empire Stop Features First Time Winners
The inaugural visit for the Canadian based Quick 32 Sportsman and PBSS series’ to Empire Dragway in Western New York State produced two first time circuit winners….
In what was round #3 for the 2014 campaign, racing at the Leicester area facility was a 1/8th mile format.
Driving his 2006 GTO in Top Sportsman, Jon Schmid won his first Quick 32 Sportsman Series event. The Orchard Park, NY racer took out Top Dragster finalist Buddy Forrest of Rochester, NY and his Chevy-powered Spitzer dragster with a 4.089 at 120.72 on the Empire eighth-mile track.
Schmid eliminated Steve Corriveau of Fonthill, Ontario in the Top Sportsman final, and Forrest eliminated Sam Christian of Amherst, NY in the Top Dragster final.
Schmid qualified number seven in Top Sportsman, while Forrest qualified number eight in Top Dragster.
Melanie Simmons Salemi of Orillia, Ontario qualified her Top Dragster number one and also recorded top ET of the meet and set a new Quick 32 Sportsman Series eighth-mile elapsed time record with a 3.983 second pass. Scott Wildgust of Wartburg, Ontario set a new Quick 32 Sportsman Series eighth-mile mph record with a 187.57 mph run.
Qualifying number one on the Top Sportsman side was Marc Caruso of Canandaigua, NY with his 2009 Cobalt, and he set low ET with a 4.292 pass. Caruso went out in round two, and Simmons Salemi was a first round victim.
Top Sportsman semi-finalist was Dan Flanigan of Buffalo, NY, while Glen Vardy of Burlington, Ontario, and Billy Leber of Tonawanda, NY went to the semi-finals in Top Dragster.
Presently Tony Positano of Toronto, Ontario leads in the Championship Point Award Series, followed by Jon Schmid, Glen Vardy, Scott Wildgust and Wilson & Gray, the Top Five. The Quick 32 Sportsman Series, now in its sixth year, is presented by NAPA Auto Parts.
Also going to victory lane for the first time was Matt Luke, a Pro Bike rider from Cicero, NY. Luke, who qualified 10th, went rounds on his Suzuki and eliminated number nine qualifier and Pro Bike rider Mike Nearhoof of Youngstown, NY in the final with a 5.656 at 123.03 over Nearhoof’s 5.611, 121.16.
Semi-finalists in this PBSS event, which is presented by Wiseco Performance Products, were 2013 PBSS champion Dan Cryderman of Thamesville, Ontario with his Pro Bike entry, and Pro Sled rider Jessica Tourloukis of Innisfil, Ontario with her Thundercat snowmobile. Setting the pace for the PBSS was John Orfanidis of Toronto, Ontario, who posted a 4.753, 148.58 pass to take top qualifier along with setting top ET and speed. He was eliminated in the first round.
With his semi-finalist placing at Empire, Cryderman leads in the PBSS Championship Point Award Series, followed by Mark Catanzaro, Curtis Beck, Ted Glinny and John Orfanidis, the Top Five.
Next event for both the Quick 32 Sportsman Series and the PBSS is the popular 18th Annual Stratford Spectacular Hot August Nationals August 8-10 at the Grand Bend Motorplex.
Photos by Dave Ross
Posted by: Tim Miller