Grundy County Speedway, Morris, IL Race Results - August 31st & September 2nd, 2012

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    Night Of Features Ends Season At Grundy County Speedway
    By: Stan Kalwasinski

    Morris, Ill.””It didn’t hurt if your last name was ”˜Kelly’ Sunday night at the Grundy County Speedway. Veteran Pat Kelly and his teenage son, Nathan, captured feature race wins in their respective divisions and overall track championship honors as the third-of-a-mile paved fairgrounds oval wrapped up its season, hosting its 36th annual Night of Features.

    The elder Kelly made off with top honors in the Late Model ranks, winning the 61-lap Lee Schuler Memorial headliner. Kelly, wrapping up his third Late Model crown at Grundy, pushed his bright orange-colored Ford Fusion No. 16 into the lead, zipping around the outside of leader Josh Nelms for the top spot and never looking back.

    Eddie Hoffman finished second with Larry Schuler, Robbie Pyle, Dave Gentile and D.J. Weltmeyer rounding out the top six. 25 cars started the feature race, which was slowed by too many caution periods. The victory was Kelly’s second Lee Schuler Memorial win as the Coal City racer had previously won in 2006.

    “This is awesome. A great way to call it quits here,” said the 43-year-old Kelly, who will leave the driver’s seat and concentrate on his son’s racing next season. “We were good Friday night and tonight. The car got going pretty good a couple of weeks ago. I messed up on tires Friday night.”

    Young Kelly won the 30-lap Street Stock main event and capped off an impressive season, winning the division title in only his second year of racing. Kelly and his black No. 16 bested season-rival Johnny Senerchia and Pete Odell.

    “It’s official,” said Pat Kelly about his retirement. “We want to put the time and effort into my kid. I think Nathan has all the tools to do the job. He deserves the opportunity.

    Ron Vandermeir Jr. was the winner of the 35-lap Mid American Sportsman main event Sunday at Grundy, giving him four wins in 2012. Vandermeir guided his Chevrolet to the win over fastest qualifier Tommy Knippenberg and John Ventrello. Second generation racer Kevin Gentile was crowned the Mid American champion at Grundy for 2012.

    Steve Hespen surprised the crowd by winning the ”˜handicapped’ Pure Stocks feature. Zach Mitchell and Rich Dearborn started a lap down to the field and came home second and third receptively. For the second year in a row, Dearborn was the division’s champion.

    Sean Murphy won the 25-lap feature race for the Illini Racing Series midgets, getting by leader Patrick Bruns in the closing laps on a rather slippery surface. 20 cars started the feature. 16-year-old Wisconsin driver Cory Talaska was the winner of the INEX Legends division 25 lapper with Andy Jones coming home second. Michael Marden started off the Night of Features by winning the 20-lap chase for Illinois Vintage Racing cars and drivers, taking the checkered flag in front of Nick Clubb.

    North Grand Auto Parts Most Popular Driver awards were announced with Eddie Hoffman (Late Model), Chuck Yuris (Mid American Sportsman) and Cheryl Hryn (Street Stock) and Dan Schmeissing (Pure Stocks) receiving the honors.

    Sunday September 1st
    Late Model
    Fast Time: Pat Kelly
    Feature: Kelly, Eddie Hoffman, Larry Schuler, Robbie Pyle, Dave Gentile, DJ Weltmeyer, John Nutley, Josh Nelms, Chris Cooling, Ricky Baker

    Mid American
    Fast Time: Tom Knippenberg
    Feature: Ron Vandermeir, T. Knippenberg, John Ventrello, Matt Clemens, Joe Vinachi, Ray Brackett, Darrell Phillips, Ron Willems, Jim Kachel, Kevin Gentile

    Street Stock
    Fast Time: Nathan Kelly
    Feature: Kelly, John Senerchia, Pete O'Dell, Chris Lelak, Jeremy Clubb, Logan Love, Cheryl Hryn, Aaron Shelton, Randy Weese, Darrell Gay

    Pure Stock
    Feature: Steve Hespen, Zach Mitchell, Rich Dearborn, Tony Brutti, David Tomasewski, Dan Schmeissing, Dominic Perona, Kirk Lindemuth, Mike Gerike, Nate Fazio

    Friday August 31st
    Late Model
    Fast Time: Eddie Hoffman
    Trophy Dash: Chris Cooling, Larry Schuler
    Heat Race 1: Trevor Tichy, Jim Kachel
    Heat Race 2: Joe Einhaus, Pat Kelly
    Feature: T. Schuler, L. Schuler, Kelly, DJ Weltmeyer, Tichy, PJ Polcyn, Kachel, Brandon Clubb, Dylan Harmon, Chuck Sottosanti

    Mid American
    Fast Time: Tom Knippenberg
    Heat Race 1: Matt Clemens, Kevin Murphy
    Heat Race 2: Ray Brackett, Joe Vinachi
    Feature: T. Knippenberg, B. Knippenberg, Ron Vandermeir, Kevin Gentile, Brackett, John Ventrello, Vinachi, Chuck Yuris, Clemens, Murphy

    Street Stock
    Fast Time: Nathan Kelly
    Heat Race 1: Cheryl Hryn, Jeremy Clubb
    Heat Race 2: Pete O'Dell, Aaron Shelton
    Feature: Kelly, John Senerchia, Logan Love, Randy Weese, Renee Farren, Darrell Gay, Lelak, Clubb, Marqus Hoover, Dick Bartel

    Pure Stock
    Heat Race 1: Nathan Ott, Ron Vavine
    Heat Race 2: Dan Schmeissing, Dominic Perona
    Feature: Chet Hartley, Rich Dearborn, Zach Mitchell, Vavine, Perona, Kirk Lindemuth, Schmeissing, Ott, Nate Fazio, Mark Williams

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