Photo courtesy Jeff Karabin
Tim Fuller celebrates in victory lane after winning at Fonda Speedway on Saturday night.
By RON SZCZERBA
For The Recorder
FONDA — At the beginning of the 2017 racing season many people were surprised that Tim Fuller had decided to make Fonda Speedway his home track on Saturday nights. It was a win, win for Fuller who would gain DIRTcar points for racing there and for the Fonda fans as well to have a driver of his caliber racing there every Saturday evening in addition to all of the other great drivers who call the “Track of Champions” home.
Perhaps the only drawback for Fuller was the distance that he had to travel to get to Fonda from his home town of Watertown, but that long distance tow paid big dividends on Saturday evening as he was the winner at Fonda for the first time in his career in the Graham Racing #19.
“I’ve been coming here to Fonda for 20 years but only once or twice a year until this year when we decided to make it our home track for the 2017 season,” Fuller told Toby LaGrange in victory lane. “The track was real heavy tonight and I decided to make some changes just before the feature so I really have to thank Ray Graham and my crew.”
Other winners on Parillo Services Night included Dave Constantino (sportsman), Larry Niemiec (limited sportsman), Ivan Joslin (pro stock), Steve Cosselman (street stock), and Ken Hollenback (cruisers).
Troy Palmer led at the drop of Joe Kriss’ green flag from his outside front row start with fourth place starter Mike Maresca in the second spot. An early yellow on lap three slowed the field when Darwin Greene ended up in the tire wall in turn three. He was uninjured but was done for the evening at that point.
Palmer held the lead on the restart with a new second place car in opening day winner Justin Boehler now in that position. Palmer and Boehler were side by side for the lead on lap four with Palmer able to hang on to the lead at that point, but on the next lap, lap five, Boehler used an outside move in turns three and four to get by Palmer for the lead.
The final yellow flag in the event fell on lap seven when Craig Hanson spun in turn four and on that restart seventh place starter Fuller was the new second place car with ninth place starter and defending track champion Ronnie Johnson third and 10th place starter and last week’s winner Stewart Friesen fourth after they all got by Palmer for position.
Fuller got a great run coming out of turn two on lap 14 and got to the inside of Boehler to make the pass for the lead on the back stretch. Three laps later Fuller was in lap traffic which he would have to deal with for the remaining laps in the event while Friesen continued to move towards the front taking the third spot away from Johnson on lap 19 and then the second position away from Boehler on lap 25 of the 30-lap event.
Despite having to deal with lap traffic for the remaining laps, Fuller stretched out his advantage to a straightaway by the time the checkered flag flew. Friesen, Johnson, Boehler, and 12th place starter and last week’s winner Josh Hohenforst completed the top five in the event.
“Don’t screw this up,” is what Fuller told LaGrange on checkerboard square when asked what he was thinking after he took the lead in the event on lap 14.
On Saturday, June 24 it will be Bill Anagnostopulos Night at Fonda with a special Elimination Race to be held in his honor. The 3rd annual event will be for the top five in modified points and one other driver from the top 6-10 positions in points who will also compete in the elimination race featuring a huge payout for only a few laps of racing. Last year Ronnie Johnson swept the event and took home over $2,000 for only 10 laps of racing!
Starting time on Saturday, June 24 will be 7 p.m.
PARILLO SERVICES NIGHT DIRTCAR MODIFIED FEATURE – 30-LAPS – TIM FULLER, Stewart Friesen, Ronnie Johnson, Justin Boehler, Josh Hohenforst, Bobby Varin, Jeremy Wilder, Craig Hanson, Scott Huber, Shaun Pangman, Pep Corradi, Kenny Sparks, Bob Vedder, Troy Palmer, Mike Maresca, Darwin Greene, Cass Bennett (DNS)
PARILLO SERVICES NIGHT DIRTCAR SPORTSMAN FEATURE – 25-LAPS – DAVE CONSTANTINO, Chad Edwards, Rocky Warner, Nick Scavia, Tim Hartman Jr., Adam McAuliffe, Brian Pessolano, Tony Farone, David Manchester, Cody Clark, Ray Zemken, Aaron Burton, Josh DeMagistris, Brian Calabrese, Anthony Cardamone, Griffen Mansmith, Doug Hancock, Mark Mortensen, Harry Shaffer, Brian Nelson, Bruce Loomis, EJ McAuliffe, Larry Niemiec, Kurtis Hohensheldt, Mike Peek (DMS)
PARILLO SERVICES NIGHT DIRTCAR LIMITED SPORTSMAN FEATURE – 12-LAPS – LARRY NIEMIEC, William August, EJ McAuliffe, Mike Block, John Lindblade, Kathy Bellen, Wesley Sutliff, Bill Port, Cory White
PARILLO SERVICES NIGHT DIRTCAR PRO STOCK FEATURE – 20-LAPS – IVAN JOSLIN, Kenny Gates, AJ Walters, Nick Stone, Gus Hollner, Chuck Dumblewski, Justin Knight, Randy Cosselman, Jason Morrison, Shane Playford, Ashley Celebucki, Jamie Warner, Jim Normoyle, Josh Coonradt, Cassidy Wilson, Dennis Joslin, Jason Samrov, Frank Twing, Ron Delease (DNS)
PARILLO SERVICES NIGHT STREET STOCK FEATURE – 12-LAPS – STEVE COSSELMAN, Johnny Young, Cliff Haslun, Bubby Shaffer, Jim Groncki, Harold Chadderdon, Steven Young, Chase Aussicker, Bill Yager
PARILLO SERVICES NIGHT CRUISER FEATURE – 12-LAPS – KEN HOLLENBACK, Chris Andrew, Dale VanAllen, Kerrie Hollenback, Daniel Haslun, Pat McSpirit, William Sass, Zach McSpirit