LANCASTER, N.Y. (September 13, 2019) – Lancaster Dragway @ New York International Raceway Park held a special Thursday night race for its IHRA Drag Racing program this week to make room on the schedule for U.S. Open weekend for the Stock Cars. This next to last points race of the season was a crucial one for drivers challenging for their respective class championships.
Two drivers clinched 2019 Lancaster Dragway @ NYIRP track titles on Friday. Lucas Salemi of Clarence Center, N.Y. secured the Hebeler’s Sales Bikes & Sleds track championship. It is his second career championship after winning his first in 2015. Donny “DJ” Raiser clinched the Tread City Tire Street track title. It is the third championship for Lancaster Dragway Wall of Famer and his first in 24 years. Raiser won the Pro ET championship back in 1994 & 95. Salemi and Raiser join Jr. Dragster champ PJ Marston as the first track champions crowned this season.
Thursday night winners included Tom Coonly of Blasdell, N.Y. in Mallare Trucking Top ET. Wayne Cleveland of Williamsville, N.Y. was victorious in Top 8 Eliminator. In Gianna Mazia’s Mod ET, Clay Ricketson of East Aurora, N.Y. grabbed his first win of 2019. Mike Peters of Angola, N.Y. picked up his fifth win of the season in Hebeler’s Sales Bikes & Sleds. Scott Baron earned his first career win in Tread City Tire Street.
The remaining track championships left to be decided are in Gianna Mazia’s Mod ET and Mallare Trucking Top ET. Reid Ricketson leads twin brother Ryan Ricketson by 30 points for the Mod ET title. In Top ET, Jan Winkowski is ahead of Paul Cochi by 30 points and Keith Cleveland by 50 points.
The points titles will be decided on Friday, September 27 on the final night of the regular season. That night will also be the rescheduled Ryan Thurnherr Memorial with an extra $2,500 donated to the purse thanks to the Thurnherr family. Gianna Mazia’s Mod will have even more money to chase because it is their bonus bucks night with an extra $500 to the winner courtesy of Paul Cambria.
Lancaster Dragway will be open for Tuesday Test & Tune and Wednesday Cruise Night this coming week, but the facility will be quiet next weekend (Setpember 20 & 21) as our teams head to Keystone Raceway Park near Pittsburgh for the IHRA Team Finals.
RESULTS (Driver, hometown, vehicle, reaction time, dial-in, elapsed time and top speed)
Mallare Trucking Top ET
Winner: Tom Coonly (Blasdell, N.Y.) 1975 Chevrolet Nova .512 6.30 6.300 seconds, 104.92 mph
Runner-up: Bill Balser, Jr., (W. Seneca, N.Y.) 1972 Plymouth Duster .538 6.03 6.049 seconds, 111.95 mph
Top 8 Eliminator
Winner: Wayne Cleveland (Williamsville, N.Y.) 1923 Ford T-Bucket .508 5.68 5.702 seconds, 115.41 mph
Runner-up: Mike Swinarski (Orchard Park, N.Y.) 2002 Chevrolet Camaro .585 5.200 seconds, 132.40 mph
Gianni Mazia’s Mod ET
Winner: Clay Ricketson (E. Aurora, N.Y.) 1974 Dodge Dart .509 7.204 seconds, 93.96 mph
Runner-up: Mike Hickey (Batavia, N.Y.) 1972 Plymouth Duster .533 6.78 6.749 seconds, 98.96 mph
Hebeler’s Sales Bikes & Sleds
Winner: Mike Peters (Angola, N.Y.) 1980 Kawasaki .517 5.49 5.511 seconds, 122.96 mph
Runner-up: Lucas Salemi (Clarence Center, N.Y.) .563 6.46 6.438 seconds, 100.04 mph
Tread City Tire Street ET
Winner: Scott Baron (Lackawanna, N.Y.) 2003 Subaru Legacy .567 11.26 seconds, 63.28 mph
Runner-up: Tim Markle (Hilton, N.Y.) 1989 Pontiac Firebird .595 9.36 9.364 seconds, 74.87 mph