LANCASTER, N.Y. (June 9, 2019) – Lancaster Speedway & Dragway @ New York International Raceway Park (NYIRP) hosted a stock car practice session on Saturday afternoon with 40 competitors on hand. 

Officials from the Race of Champions (RoC) organized the practice session. The RoC is working with the NYIRP ownership group this season to promote a six-race series of stock car events in 2019. 

Tommy Catalano taking laps in his RoC Modified (Paula Thompson photo)

One of the drivers taking advantage of the track time at Lancaster was Race of Champions Modified driver Tommy Catalano of Ontario, N.Y. Catalano is a former Sportsman and Late Model winner a Lancaster, but is still searching for a first career RoC Modified Series win. Former track champion Nick Cappelli of Orchard Park, N.Y. shook down his ISMA Supermodified. Cappelli made his ISMA debut last year at Lancaster, and hopes to make more starts in the near future. 

Additional drivers on hand included Sam Fullone and Dave Russell from the RoC Late Models, RoC Super Stock competitors Joe Mancuso, Ryan Lagoda and Andy Cryan and RoC Sportsman drivers Mark Pennell, Dave Kozlowski and Jeff Szafraniec. The division with the biggest turn out was the Street Stocks with about 10 cars taking laps, including Mike Dalfonso, Chris Powers, Jerry Kosmowski, Nik and Tim Welshans and Jim Loffredo.

The first race of 2019 is the 5th annual Ol’ Boy Cup 60 for the Race of Champions Modified Series on Thursday, June 27. The Street Stocks, 4-Cylinders and NYPA TQ Midgets will also be in action. Additional race dates include Thursday, July 11 for the 4th annual Joe Reilly Tribute 54 for the RoC Sportsman, Autograph Night on Saturday July 20, the 30th annual Tommy Druar/Tony Jankowiak Memorial Modified 110 on August 17, the Ken Heckler Tribute 51-lap Street Stock race on August 24 and the 31st annual U.S. Open weekend on September 13-15. 

For more informational follow Lancaster Speedway & Dragway @ NYIRP and the Race of Champions on Facebook and Twitter or log to their websites: and



LANCASTER, N.Y. (May 15, 2019) – The 60th anniversary season of racing at Lancaster Speedway & Dragway @ New York International Raceway Park kicks off this Saturday with a Test & Tune session for the IHRA Drag Racing program.

Pit gates will open at 10 a.m. on Saturday for tech inspection followed by a time trial session from 12-5 p.m. 

Following of a winter of uncertainty surrounding the facility, local businessmen Vito Antonicelli and Mike Swinarski purchased the 77-acre property and will continue to operate it as a motorsports venue as well as bring in additional events to compliment the 2019 racing schedule.

The new ownership group will operate the business under the name New York International Raceway Park (NYIRP) while keeping the 60 year tradition of racing in Lancaster going strong.

“When the possibility of racing not happening at Lancaster in 2019 started to become a reality, Mike and I decided we needed to step in and help,” said Antonicelli.  “We look at it as redefining the future for generations to come. To keep the facility open for our current racers and fans while growing and adding racers and fans that will keep it going for another 60 years.”

The traditional weekly schedule of drag racing events will start next week with Tuesday night Test & Tune, Wednesday Cruise Night and Friday night IHRA Drag Racing.

Gates will open at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, May 21 for Test & Tune and amateur drag racing. The Junior Dragsters will once again be a part of Tuesday nights this season with their first race on June 4. The Senior Nostalgia class also returns on Tuesdays with six races. Wednesday, May 22, will mark the return of the popular Wednesday Cruise Nights at NYIRP starting at 6 p.m.

The first night of points for the IHRA Drag Racing program will be Friday, May 24 for all weekly classes, including Top ET, Mod ET, Bikes & Sleds and Street ET. The TNT Super Series and the fan-favorite Buffalo Street Outlaws will be a part of the action on opening night.

The ownership of NYIRP have partnered with the Race of Champions (RoC) to put on a series of six stock car events this season. Opening night for Lancaster Speedway @ NYIRP will be Thursday, June 27 with the running of the 5th annual Ol’ Boy Cup 60 for the RoC Modified Series featuring the top Modified stars from New York and Pennsylvania. The Street Stocks, 4-Cylinders and NYPA TQ Midgets will round out the first stock car event of 2019.

A second midweek stock car special follows on Thursday, July 11 with the 4th annual Joe Reilly Tribute 54-lap race for the RoC Sportsman Modified Series. The traditional “Saturday night under lights” stock car action returns on Saturday, July 20 with Autograph Night headlined by the RoC Sportsman and Late Model Series.

One of Lancaster’s biggest Modified races returns home on Saturday, August 17 with the 30th running of the Tommy Druar/Tony Jankowiak Memorial 110 for the RoC Modifieds. The following Saturday, August 24, will be the Ken Heckler Tribute 51 for the Street Stocks.

Lancaster Speedway @ NYIRP will close out its season in its traditional fashion with “WNY’s Racing Finale”, the 31st annual U.S. Open during the weekend of September 13-15. U.S. Open weekend will keep its traditional schedule with the excitement reaching its peak with the U.S. Open 125 for the RoC Modifieds on the afternoon of Sunday, September 15.

NYIRP will host Road Rage-A-Rama (formerly known as Crash-A-Rama) on Saturday, June 15 presented by JM Motorsports Productions. This family favorite event will include and Enduro Race, Demolition Derby, School Bus Race, Flag Pole Race, Skid Plate Race and Boat Trailer Race. More details on Road Rage-A-Rama will be posted in the coming weeks.



Lancaster National Speedway, home of New York International Raceway Park will roar to life for the 2019 season with six big nights of stock car racing at the historic Western New York speed plant. Recently purchased by local drag racers and Buffalo area businessmen, Vito Antonicelli and Mike Swinarski, the track will once again entertain racing enthusiasts throughout the region in a multitude of racing genres, including modified stock car racing.

Opening night will be Thursday, June 27, with the running of the 5th Annual Ol’ Boy Cup in honor of Bill Colton and his efforts to develop the Thermal Foam soft wall blocks which are now used at many tracks. The Race of Champions Asphalt Modified Series will highlight the night with a 60-lap feature. The Lancaster Street Stocks, Four Cylinders and NYPA Midgets will round out the racing card.

The Race of Champions Asphalt Modified Series will also race on Saturday, August 17 with the running of the 30th Annual Tribute to Tommy Druar and Tony Jankowiak as well as part of the 30th Annual US Open on Sunday, September 15.

The Joe Reilly Summer Slam will take place on Thursday, July 11 for the Race of Champions Sportsman Modified Series, with Race of Champions Sportsman Modified Series events also being held on Saturday, July 20 and Saturday, August 24 along with highlighting the Saturday, September 14 portion of the US Open.

The Lancaster Street Stocks, under their 2018 Lancaster National Speedway rules package will join the card on all six occasions highlighted by the Ken Heckler ‘51’ when the division will take center stage on Saturday, August 24.

The Four Cylinders will bring their thrilling brand of racing to the inner-oval on six different occasions, including as a part of the Race of Champions Four Cylinder Dash Series as part of the US Open. The Four Cylinders will utilize their 2018 rules for the division.

The NYPA TQ Midgets will also play a role in the season, performing on five different nights at the track. Thursday, July 27; Thursday, June 11; Saturday, July 20; Saturday, August 17 and Saturday, August 24.

Purse and race information will be released for the Race of Champions divisions, the Lancaster Street Stocks and Four Cylinders in the near future. Pit Pads will go on sale on June, 1 and will be $40 for the season and the purchased pit pad will be available on the night your respective division races, including the US Open. Any questions in regard to the Stock Car program at Lancaster National Speedway, home of New York International Raceway Park, should be run through the Race of Champions (

The Race of Champions is a sanctioning body presenting Modified and Stock Car racing on asphalt and dirt surfaces throughout the Northeast, with events in New York, Pennsylvania and New Jersey with primary marketing partners Hoosier Racing Tire, VP Racing Fuels, US Army, Upstate Automotive Group, Waddell Communications, Pilat Graphic Design, TDH Refrigeration, Sherwood Racing Wheels,, Wilbert’s U-Pull It and The 69th annual Race of Champions weekend will take place in 2019 at Lake Erie Speedway in North East, Pennsylvania and is the second longest consecutive auto-racing event in North America, second only to the Indianapolis 500.

For more information, contact;

Race of Champions Media at

Follow us on Twitter; Instagram and Facebook; @RoCModSeries

The Lancaster National Speedway, home of New York International Raceway Park schedule for the 2019 season is;

Saturday, June 8 – Practice – All Divisions.

Thursday, June 27 – 5th Annual Ol’ Boy Cup 60 – Race of Champions Modified Series; Lancaster Street Stocks; Four Cylnders; NYPA TQ Mdgets

Thursday, July 11 – 4th Annual Joe Reilly Summer Slam ‘54’ – Race of Champions Sportsman Modifed Series; Lancaster Street Stocks; Four Cylinders; NYPA TQ Midgets

Saturday, July 20 – “Autograph Night” – Race of Champions Late Model Series; Race of Champions Sportsman Modified Series, Lancaster Street Stocks; Four Cylinders; NYPA TQ Midgets

Saturday, August 17 – 30th Annual Tribute to Tommy Druar / Tony Jankowiak ‘110’ – Race of Champions Asphalt Modified Series; Race of Champions Super Stock; Lancaster Street Stocks, NYPA TQ Midgets

Saturday, August 24 – 3rd Annual Ken Heckler ‘51’ – Lancaster Street Stocks; Race of Champions Sportsman Modifieds; Four Cylinders; NYPA TQ Midgets

Friday, September 13 – 31ST Annual US Open – Practice – All Divisions

Saturday, September 14 – Race of Champions Sportsman Modified Series; Race of Champions Super Stock Series; Race of Champions Four Cylinders Dash Series; Race of Champiions TQ Midgets

Sunday, September 15 – Race of Champions Asphalt Modified Series; Race of Champions Late Model Series; Lancaster Street Stocks



LANCASTER, N.Y. (November 11, 2018) – Lancaster National Speedway & Dragway saluted its top performers of the 2018 season this past weekend with the annual awards banquets for the Franco’s Pizza IHRA Drag Racing program and the X-Press Signs Stock Car Series.

The celebration of the Dragway season was held on Friday night at the Variety Club Banquet Hall in Lancaster. Dale Eckert of South Wales, N.Y. was crowned champ in Top ET for the second-straight year. Eckert now has 12 track championships over the last 13 seasons. In McGard Mod ET, Jeff Kerl of Cheektowaga, N.Y. claimed fourth career class championship, and first since 2009. Mike Peters of Angola, N.Y. took top honors in Hebeler’s Sales Bikes & Sleds for the third year in a row. Mason Fix of Amherst, N.Y., was honored as Tread City Tire Street ET champion as he also was a “three-peat” champion.

Drag Champs: Mike Peters, Mason Fix & Jeff Kerl

The Sportsman of the Year award went to competitor Dave Texido for his efforts behind the scenes at Lancaster Dragway. The second annual Libby Gayman Award went to Ann-Marie Nugent in honor of her support of Team Lancaster at the IHRA Summit Team Finals.

As an added bonus to what was already a special evening, the 2018 class of the Lancaster National Dragway Wall of Fame were also inducted. Inductees included former track champion and IHRA National Event winner Mike Swinarski, racer and major supporter of Sunday Nostalgia Weekend Dick Collins and former racer and accomplished chassis builder John Torrelli. Former track employee Mac Myers was inducted posthumously, his son and current LNS&D Director of Safety Mike Myers accepted on his behalf.

The Speedway banquet was held the following night at the Buffalo Pizza & Tap Room. Leading the list of 2018 track champions was Owen Bednasz of Lakeview, N.Y. who claimed his first career VP Racing Fuels Sportsman title. Bednasz’s championship season was highlighted by his feature win on July 14 and top ten finishes in all nine regular season Sportsman races.

Andy Cryan of Buffalo was the 2018 Advance Auto Parts Street Stock champion thanks to a nine-win season in the division. Cryan paid tribute to the late John Julicher, Sr. in his acceptance speech for the support and mentoring he gave Cryan during the final years of his life.

Dan Dressel of Amherst, N.Y. clinched the 2018 Roaming Buffalo 4-Cylinder championship with four wins this past season. He recorded top ten finishes in all 14 4-Cylinder features in 2018.

Street Stock driver Mike Dalfonso received the 2018 Alex Friesen Spirit of Racing Award. Dalfonso continues to improve in the competitive Street Stock division, but is also willing to lend a hand to his fellow competitors when needed. Lancaster National Speedway lead tech inspector Dave Johnson was honored with the Tommy Druar Contribution to Racing Award. In his three years on the job, Johnson has tirelessly sought to improve the tech inspection process, worked on rules changes and used his own money to acquire new tech tools for his staff.

Both programs had their largest banquet gatherings in several years with over 150 guests at each event. Following the Stock Car banquet on Saturday, Program Director Todd Hannon assured those in attendance that racing will continue at Lancaster in 2019.

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Order your 2018 Stock Car Banquet Tickets

Order your 2018 Stock Car Banquet Tickets

Stock Car Banquet – Saturday, November 10 at Buffalo Pizza & Ale House & Banquet Room (603 Dingens St.)

Prices: $38 for adults, $20 17 & Under – Ticket order forms to be out Friday – CLICK HERE FOR TICKET ORDER FORM

Menu: Roast beef, Chicken Marsala, vegetable medley, garlic mashed potatoes, salad and rolls

Open bar 3 hours: draft beer, well liquor, wine and pop included. $2 up-charge for bottled beer and top shelf

Cocktails 6-7 p.m., 7-8 dinner & awards, 8-10 DJ and dancing

Ticket includes live music in bar next to banquet room plus 50% off hotel rooms. Must book rooms through bar (716-240-9161)

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LANCASTER, N.Y. (September 23, 2018) – Matt Hirschman of Northampton, PA won the 30th annual U.S. Open 125 Race of Champions Modified Series event on Sunday afternoon at Lancaster National Speedway for his record-tying fifth U.S. Open Modified win.

In additional action from U.S. Open Sunday, Tommy Catalano of Ontario, N.Y. won the 30-lap Race of Champions Late Model Series event. Rich Sharpe of Lancaster won the Advance Auto Parts Street Stock U.S. Open feature for the third year in a row.

The 30th edition of the U.S. Open 125 featured an all Catalano front row as brothers Tommy and Timmy Catalano drew the top two spots during the redraw. They lined up in front of Hirschman and Mike Leaty for the opening green flag. Tommy Catalano and Hirschman launched from their inside row starting positions to take first and second place on the opening lap.

Catalano and Hirschman broke away from the pack early on with Leaty running third. Chuck Hossfeld made his way from the eighth starting position to fourth place. The caution flag came out for just the second time on lap 43 when Chris Ridsdale spun out in turn 1. Close to half of the field pitted during the caution period, including Leaty, Hossfeld, Patrick Emerling, Daren Scherer, Daryl Lewis, Jr., and George Skora III.

Catalano and Hirschman stayed out along with Timmy Catalano, Tyler Rypkema, Danny Knoll, Jr. and Scott Wylie. Hirschman took advantage of the lap 50 restart to take the lead from Catalano from the outside of the front row. His stay in first place was short lived, however, as Catalano managed to take back on lap 54. Catalano drove under Hirschman down the frontstretch to regain the top spot.

While Catalano and Hirschman battled for the lead, the cars that pitted for a new tire were barnstorming their way back to the front of the field led by Leaty, Hossfeld and Andy Jankowiak. Leaty took over second from Hirschman on lap 64. It looked like Leaty would then track down Catalano, but two laps later slid out of the groove in turn 2 to give the runner-up spot back to Hirschman.

The yellow flag flew for the third time on lap 79 when Eric Beers spun into the grass off of turn 4. Hirschman used this opportunity to make his tire stop and surrendered his track position. This put Leaty back in second followed by Jankowiak and Emerling. Jankowiak, the 2017 U.S. Open 125 winner, needed just two laps after the restart to get by Leaty and Catalano to take the lead on lap 90.

Jankowiak had command of the field with 25 laps to go followed by Leaty, Skora, Emerling and Hirschman. Hirschman got by Emerling and Skora on lap 103 to take back third. The final caution period of the race happened on lap 103 when Daryl Lewis, Jr. spun out in turn 3. Hirschman dispatched of Leaty for second shortly after the ensuing restart.

On lap 110, Hirschman dove under Jankowiak down the front straightaway, and by the time the pair exited turn 2 Hirschman had taken the lead. Hirschman then cruised the final 15 laps to score his fifth U.S. Open Modified victory. He tied Chuck Hossfeld for most Modified win in the 30 years of the event.

Jankowiak finished second after leading 20 laps late in the race. He closed within five points of Hossfeld for the RoC Modified Series championship with one race to go. Leaty finished third followed by teammate Patrick Emerling. Tommy Catalano completed the top five after leading 86 of the first 90 laps.

Emerling’s fourth place finish gave him enough points to clinch the Treichler-Troyer Trophy as the RoC Modified driver to earn the most points in the five RoC Series races at Lancaster in 2018. The points were based on the scoring system used by Lancaster’s weekly divisions. He was awarded a unique championship trophy that was designed and built by NASCAR Monster Energy Cup Series driver Corey LaJoie.

Before starting on the pole for the Modified feature, Tommy Catalano won the RoC Late Model Series feature for his first U.S. Open victory. Catalano, driving the Joe Brainard-owned #98, passed Eldon King III for the lead on a lap 13, and then held on for the win.

King took the lead from Sam Fullone on the race’s second lap. He originally lost the lead to Catalano following a restart on lap 12 when Catalano drove under him and Bobby Weber. The pass was negated, however, when the yellow flag came out again for a spin by Dave Whittaker. Catalano made a similar move after the ensuing restart to pass King and Weber again out of turn 2.

Rich Sharpe dominated the 35-lap Advanced Auto Parts Street Stock feature as he led every lap after starting on the pole. The win was Sharpe’s third U.S. Open Street Stock win in a row.

While Sharpe pulled away from the pack there was an intense battle for the rest of the top five spots. Mike Scott, Nik Welshans and Jake Wylie were among the drivers that fiercely ran hard side-by-side for most of the race. Welshans eventually secured his spot at the top of the heap as he finished second. Wylie finished third. Jarrod Brown and Tommy Wentland rounded out the top five.

The 30th U.S. Open brings an end to the 2018 X-Press Signs Stock Car Series at Lancater National Speedway. The day had a bittersweet feel as it was the final stock car event for both Track President Tim Packman and race director Todd Hannon. We wish both Packman and Hannon all the best in the future endeavors, and thank them for their years of dedication to LNS.



Fast Qualifier: Mike Leaty – 17.012

Heat Winners: Daren Scherer, Andy Jankowiak, Matt Hirschman

U.S. Open 125 Finish: MATT HIRSCHMAN, Andy Jankowiak, Mike Leaty, Patrick Emerling, Tommy Catalano, George Skora III, Eric Beers, Scott Wylie, Chuck Hossfeld, Tyler Rypkema, Timmy Catalano, Daryl Lewis, Jr., Karl Hehr, Danny Knoll, Jr., Alan Bookmiller, Larry Jackson, Amy Catalano, Chris Ridsdale, Daren Scherer, Jack Ely DNS: Chris Finocchario


Heat Winners: Bobby Weber, Eldon King III

Feature: TOMMY CATALANO, Eldon King III, Bobby Weber, Terry Weldy, Dave Heitzhaus, Bob Minacapelli, Frank Batista, Jr., Nick Crassi, Sam Fullone, Dave Whittaker, Ron Richter, Mark Mecurio DNS: Dave Russell, Matt Bove


Heat Winners: Max Northem, Brian Hoffman, Dave Vona, Jim Mallaber

Feature: RICH SHARPE, Nik Welshans, Jake Wylie, Jarrod Brown, Tommy Wentland, Jim Mallaber, Max Northem, Andy Cryan, Dave Vona, Tim Welshans, Chris Powers, Mike Scott, Tim Garlock, Kenny Hejna, Garrett Cleversley, Frank Prell, Kory Rider, Jay Canonico, Rick Meyers, Jeff Szafraniec, Brian Hoffman, Bob Blaszak, Jr., Scott Soos, Scott Chaplin DNS: Lou Carbone, Mike Rogers

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