Rusty Smith - Sunoco Modifieds
Mitchell Wright - Super Stocks
Tim Faro - Super Six
Zack Willis - Auto Value 4 Cylinders
Brad Salatino - INEX Legends


  November 2nd, 2013
Annual Banquet Ends The 2013 Season At Spencer Speedway
  by Gary Spaid

  Friday, November 1, marked the official end of the 2013 Spencer Speedway NASCAR season. The 59th annual awards banquet was held this year at the VFW Post just outside of Palmyra.

  A couple of hundred racers, fans and officials gathered to honor the 2013 Spencer point champions. Both track and NASCAR awards were presented.

  Track announcer, Joe Marotta , hosted the banquet, as track race director Larry Steurrys handed out most of the awards.

  Present this year were all five divisional track champions; Brad Salatino (Legends), Tim Faro (Super Six), Zach Willis (4-Cylinder Scorpions), Mitchell Wright (Super Stock) and Rusty Smith (Sunoco Modified). Each one was given the opportunity to speak to those assembled.

  Willis thanked his crew Curt, Pete and Sam, saying, “this championship belonged to them.”

  Faro thanks his family and girlfriend, along with everyone who worked on the car. Wright thanked John White and the officials for allowing the teams a place to race each week and put on a show for the fans.

  Sunoco Modified driver Rusty Smith stole the show. He started off thanking the other drivers. He stated, “I race at a lot of tracks but at Spencer we all see to have the ‘same reason’ for racing. Everything there just seems more professional.” He then started to joke around with drivers like Mike Leaty, ”Yeah, Mike has won more races then his father this year, speaking of which I have won more then my father this year too.”

  Smith then concluded by thanking his crewmates and car owner, stating, “All I have to do is show up each week and drive.” He also thanked his wife Julie and family, and Blue Ox for their sponsorship support.
The top three drivers in track points all received beautiful trophies for their efforts, along with Whelen All-American wall plaques from NASCAR.

  One special moment came when announcing the Scorpion 4 cylinder awards. Four girls stood proud before the cameras to be in the top ten in track points; Alison Knoepfler, Beth and Jennifer Dennie and Carrie Bolton-Brown. Of course the “drive for diversity” is nothing new at Spencer Speedway, who crowned Amy Catalano a Sunoco Modified champion back in 2009.

  Many special awards were presented. This year’s Hard Charger Awards went to Bobby Lippa Jr. in the Sunoco Modified division, Brandon Larner in the Super Stock division, Keith Butler Jr. in the Super Six division, Joe Clark in the Auto Value Scorpion 4-Cylinders and Josh Marchese in the INEX Legends class.

  The Rookie of the Year honors were presented to Carrie Bolton -Brown in the Auto Value Scorpion 4-Cylinders and Jay Elhage in the Super Sixes.

  Bobby Lippa Jr. picked up a special award for having the Best Appearing Car.
The Spencer Speedway Mechanic of the Year Award went to Michael Dennie. Dennie fields cars for both of his daughters, Beth and Jennifer.

  The Perseverance Award was given to Van Grant in the Super Six division. The Achievement Award was presented to Brandon Larner.

  The Excellence Award was presented to the 75 Auto Value Scorpion Team headed by driver Zach Willis. The Willis team won four times in 2013, out of just nine races run.

  Finally Super Stock driver Willie Strusz took the microphone and announced the racers had gotten together and wanted to present Bobby Lippa Jr. with a special award for keeping the Super Stock division alive and well. Lippa started a traveling series for the division a year ago.

  Larry Steurrys made several announcements about the 2014 season. Official are in the process of booking several special races and looking at starting races each Friday at 7 p.m. instead of 7:30 p.m. The annual Spencer/NHRA Drag racing banquet was to follow the next night at the VFW also.

  On the sadder side, word of the passing of former Spencer driver and late model champion, Pat O’Neil from cancer circulated throughout the gathering. O’Neil won his sole Spencer track championship in 1958. He had ten Spencer feature wins to his credit in the full fender division, all in the late 50’s.

  Oval track racing at Spencer will open for the 60th season in May 2014.

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John White
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3020 Route 104, Williamson NY

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