Wednesday, January 25, 2017

THE WONDERLING BROTHERS CAPTURED 12 SWEENEY RUSH LATE MODEL WINS IN 2016

BROTHERS JEREMY, MIKEY & BRADY WONDERLING CARRYING ON THE RACING TRADITION SET FORTH BY THEIR FATHER MIKE; THE WONDERLING BROTHERS CAPTURED 12 SWEENEY RUSH LATE MODEL WINS IN 2016
January 25, 2017(By Doug Kennedy)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE








(Pulaski, PA)...A while back, we showcased drivers who are currently racing in the Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Dirt Late Model Series powered by Pace Performance, who have fathers who have raced or in some cases, are still racing.  One family we neglected to include could perhaps be one of the most successful and that is the Wonderling Family.  There's three brothers, Jeremy and Mike Wonderling of Wellsville, NY, and Brady Wonderling of Scio, NY and their dad, Mike.  The two towns are a mere miles apart.    

During the 2016 season, the three brothers won a total of 12 RUSH-sanctioned races.  The breakdown of those wins were Jeremy with nine (3 at Bradford, 3 at Freedom, 2 at McKean, and 1 at Genesee), Brady with two wins at Genesee and Mikey with a win at Bradford.  Jeremy also won two non sanctioned races at Little Valley Speedway giving him a total of 11 for the 2016 season!  
The boys' mentor is non other than their dad, Mike Wonderling, who at 64, raced Late Models beginning in 1980.  Besides helping his sons with their racing programs, Mike also had the opportunity to race against each and every one of his sons during his illustrious career.  All of their resumes are quite impressive.
Jeremy won a 360 Late Model title at Little Valley in 2011 before switching over to a Crate Late Model in 2014.  At 36 years of age, Jeremy, the youngest of the racing brothers and the most successful, first began racing IMCA Modifieds in 1998.  He did that for three seasons before moving to then what was called Super Stocks in 2001. Twice he won points championships at both Little Valley (2011 and 2013) and Outlaw Speedway (2007 and 2008).  The cars were then called 360 Late Models and the Series that he followed was the BRP Series, where he is the all-time leader in feature wins. His career feature win total is approaching 100.  Jeremy's initial reaction to the Crate Late Model as compared to the 360 Late Model is that the Crates are more responsive.    
Being able to race against his brothers is very important for Jeremy.  He looks back to a race at Little Valley in June of 2016 when he was in the lead with his two brothers, Mikey and Brady, in hot pursuit.  Jeremy, who led from the start of the race, would win with Brady finishing second , and Mikey fourth.  At one point in the race, the Wonderlings were at the top of the leader board with Jeremy leading, Mikey second, and Brady third, but that has happened on a number of other occasions as well.   Upon conclusion of that race, Jeremy was thrilled with the victory, but was happier that he gets the opportunity to race against his two brothers on a regular basis. 
There were two other occasions in 2016 that had Jeremy and Brady hook up with a one-two finish. In the May 28th Enlisted Club Warrior race at Genesee, Brady had the lead, only to lose it to his younger brother with 10 laps to go.  In yet another 2016 race at Freedom, Jeremy was once again able to pass Brady for the win.    
There a couple of races that Jeremy puts at the top of his racing list.  Winning a Sweeney RUSH Touring Series race at McKean County Raceway this past August 18 during the Fair is very special for him, but the proudest moment came back in 2008 when he was able to win the "Brock Young Memorial" race at McKean.  Young, who was a very close friend of Jeremy's, had died in a car accident.    "His dad and brother were there so it was a very special win for me," said Jeremy. 
Brother Mikey, who is the oldest at 43, has helped his younger brother on numerous occasions.  Jeremy talks about a race at Little Valley this past season when he borrowed a spare motor from his older brother and went onto beat him in the race that evening.   "Last year, I borrowed his spare motor for a half season or better and it really helped.  Sometimes he took it back because I was beating him with it," said Jeremy. 
For 2017, Jeremy will be driving a brand new GRT since he sold last year's car to Mikey.  Living right next door to each other, Jeremy and Mikey are able to spend a lot of time with each other and share a lot of racing ideas.   "Being that close, we are able to help each other out on a number of occasions," said Jeremy.    
For the last two seasons, all three brothers competed in the RUSH Late Model Series.  Jeremy drives the #3J, Mikey, the #18, and middle son, Brady, who is 40, drives the #z1.  Competing against each other is mostly a thrill, but let's just say that there are times that aren't so good either.
"At times, it's pretty good and at other times, not so good," said Jeremy.  "But I have a lot of fun racing against them."
"For the most part it works out, but we've had our nights," said Mikey.
"All three of us have had our battles where each other didn't feel the other guy did the right thing, but two days later we're back at the race shop sharing information," said Brady.  "If we're all up front and I can't pass them, then I'm cheering them on to win.  I want to win as much as they do because it is a very competitive sport."
One of Mikey's racing highlights is also winning the "Brock Young Memorial" race at Woodhull Raceway in 2014.  Like his younger brother, Young was also a dear friend of Mikey's.
In this past season, there was one race in particular that Mikey remembers that included all three brothers.  "We were running one-two-three, at the end of a race at Woodhull," said Mikey.  The final finish was Brady, Jeremy, and Mikey.  "We've had numerous one-two finishes as well."
For his career, Mikey has won the 360 Late Model title at Outlaw Speedway in Dundee, NY in 2010 and the BRP championship in 2014.  His racing career began in 1998 in a Sportsman car. After spending one year with that, he moved to a 360 Late Model and drove that until getting into a Crate Late Model in 2015.  He figures he has somewhere around 15 career feature wins.     
Brady's racing career began with a Modified.  From there he spent two seasons in the BRP Super Stock Series before moving into a Super Late Model.  He, like Mikey, got into a RUSH Crate Late Model in 2015. 
During his Super Late Model days, Brady had some good runs with the MACS and STARS Series.  "I ran a number of World of Outlaw races and always made the show," said Brady.  In December of 2005, Brady and one of his friends decided to head South for 5 months and raced in Mississippi, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, and the Carolinas.  "At one race at Columbus, Mississippi, I was seventh fastest out of 105 cars," said Brady.
Brady also remembers a race at Outlaw when he won a BRP race in Jeremy's back-up car.  "He was running his main car and I passed him with a few laps to go," said Brady. 
"He kind of pushed him out of the way," said their dad, Mike.  In all, Brady has won somewhere around 30 features during his career. 
For 2017, Brady will be running a brand new Ed Carley Rocket, while Mikey and Jeremy will be running the GRT.  "We've always had good equipment," said Brady.  "It may not be the best, but it's as good as most of what everyone else has."
All of the three boys pretty much run their own racing operations so financing is always a major consideration.  However, all three get support from The Store, a local gas and grocery store, and have some other small sponsors as well.  Jeremy's include Terry Prince Contracting, while Mikey has Evingham Auto Sales and Mike Mesler Garage. 
As for their driving styles, it's pretty much a consensus amongst the Wonderlings that Jeremy is the most aggressive and will take the most chances. Both Brady and Mikey are more conservative, but as Jeremy explained they will be aggressive when it's needed.
"He's wide open," said Mikey of his youngest brother. 
"Brady and Mikey are more conservative," said their dad.  "He (Mikey) thinks more about how much it's going to cost to fix a race car if he wrecks it.  For Jeremy, he knows that he will have to work harder the next week if he wrecks it." 
"I've had the most success with the most features wins because I'm probably more dedicated than they are," said Jeremy of his brothers.
"He takes more chances," added Brady. 
   
Besides mom and dad, the Wonderling boys get a lot of support from their families.  Jeremy gets his from his wife Abigail and their 8 year old son, Carson.
"I love it," said Abigail of Jeremy's racing.  "He's very dedicated to it.  He does a lot of work by himself and doesn't mind doing the dirty work to be successful in racing." 

Mikey's wife is Michelle and he has a 24-year-old step son, Cody.  Brady is married to Stacia and has three step kids, Tyler, Brooke, and Jessie and 8 year old Jadyn. 
The real leader of the Wonderlings is the 64-year-old Mike. After a few seasons of racing a 360 Late Model, Mike moved into a Super Late and stayed there until 2007 when Crate Late Models debuted in the North.  After driving for a few seasons in different series than his kids, Mike sold his car and trailer and was intent on just following the careers of his boys and not race at all.
However that changed when Jeremy called him up and said that he had found a really good race car.  "I was working in Kentucky at the time as a service technician for Air Preheater," said Mike.  "He said that as long as you're going to watch us race every week, you might as well have a racecar.  That was in 2009 so I came home for Easter, got the car right, and raced it for the next five years." 
As for racing against his kids, Mike said, "I had more fun doing that than when I was racing by myself.  At times, when they were leading the race or up front, I just got distracted thinking about what they were doing."
Racing against dad was also special for the boys.  "That was the highlight of my career being able to race against him for 15 years," said Brady of his time spent with the Super Lates.  "Dad was great in his time.  When I first got into Late Model racing, he was in the front and I was in the back, but that eventually changed."
"It was a lot of fun," said Mikey.  "I remember a BRP race at McKean.  I was running second to him for 28 laps and passed him with 2 laps to go to win.  That was a lot of fun." 
"There are a lot of memories I have of racing with him going side-by-side," said Jeremy.  "He cared more about what we were doing than what he was doing." 
Mike retired in 2014 on a good note, winning the Freedom track championship with seven feature wins.  He also won 5 other championships and has nearly 100 career feature wins.   A few years ago, Mike took all of his winning trophies down to Allegheny Mountain Speedway.  When a young kid won a race, promoter John Layfield, who refurbished them, gave them to the winning kid.  Now he just follows his sons with his wife, Deborah.  They will take their motor home to the tracks and if it's too far, they'll just stay the night. 
 "I miss the driving and the excitement of racing," said Mike of his retirement.  "I don't miss all the work.  People don't see the work that is involved.  It takes one to two nights to clean up the car and that's if you didn't wreck it.  The older you get, it feels like a lot more work."
"I'm more impressed with my dad because he has done stuff in a race car that I've never seen anyone else do," said Jeremy.    
Business-wise, the Wonderling boys are all into the logging business.  Jeremy and Brady are loggers, while Mike hauls the logs.  Jeremy has been logging since he was 18, buying his own equipment when he was 21.  He actually works for his uncle, Charlie, at Baldwin's Forest Products, situated in Bolivar, New York.   
"He picks the most dangerous things-logging and racing," said Jeremy's wife, Abigail. 
Second son Brady, is the one who actually got his younger brother into the logging business.  There are times, although not regularly, that they end up working together.  Brady is a self employed logger who contracts a lot with Two Rivers Timber Company, located in Addison, NY.  He's been working in the logging business since he was 12 years old.   
Mikey is the one who hauls the logs. "I went to the service for four years when I got out of high school and then started doing the logging right after."
As for the RUSH Series, Mike said, "I think it's a pretty good series. They're doing a good job, especially with the teching.  I'm sure no one gets away with anything."
"I like the series," said Jeremy. "I especially like the rule enforcements and the teching and Manufacturer's Night is definitely a big thing."
Brady said, "(RUSH Series Director) Vicki (Emig) does a real good job.  Everyone would like to get paid more, but the tracks have to be able to afford us as well." 
"I think it's a good thing," said Mikey.  'I don't follow the whole series because of time and money.  If you spend the same amount of money as you win, it doesn't make sense to run the whole series.  "Every year, I say I'm going to follow the entire series and then we have a bad race or wreck and I end up not running the entire series.  But the competition level in that series is pretty stiff.  It's really the only class option for me because I can't afford a Super Late."
RUSH Late Model 2016 marketing partners include Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC, Pace Performance, Hoosier Tire, Bilstein Shocks, Sunoco Race Fuels, Bazell Race Fuels, Insinger Performance, MSD Performance, Maxima Racing Oil, Jones Racing Products, Alternative Power Sources, Precise Racing Products, ARbodies, TBM Brakes, K&N Filters, Lincoln Electric, FK Rod Ends, Velocita-USA, Classic Ink USA, Rocket Chassis, Bobby Lake Motorsports High Gear Speed Shop, CrateInsider.com, B.R.A.K.E.S., RockAuto.com, and Valley Fashions.
E-mail can be sent to the RUSH Racing Series at info@rushracingseries.com and snail mail to 4368 Route 422, Pulaski, PA 16143. Office phone is 724-964-9300 and fax is 724-964-0604. The RUSH Racing Series website is www.rushracingseries.com. Like our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/rushlatemodels and follow us on Twitter @RUSHLM.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON; NEVER AS TRUE AS THROUGHOUT THE SWEENEY RUSH LATE MODEL SERIES






LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON; NEVER AS TRUE AS THROUGHOUT THE SWEENEY RUSH LATE MODEL SERIES

December 17, 2016(By Doug Kennedy)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE




(Pulaski, PA)...No sport can lay claim to having more relatives, whether it be brother to brother, father to son, uncle to nephew, or any other relationship than what is seen throughout the world of auto racing. On a national level, you have the Unsers, the Andrettis, the Earnhardts, the Pettys, and the Rahals; just to name a few.  Can we say it's nepotism at its finest.
But for now we turn our attention to the local scene and highlight some of the father-son combos that are part of the premier division of the Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC RUSH Racing Series powered by Pace Performance- the Late Models.
We would be remiss if we didn't mention the most well documented father-son duo, Max and Rob Blair, whose success is like none other; however, in this we highlight a large group of drivers who currently compete in the RUSH Late Model division that maybe don't receive as much notoriety, but have dads that have previously raced and are right by their side.  And for some, the dads are still racing even competing against their sons. 
In most cases, the sons, who follow their father's footsteps, have racing careers which develop at an early age due mainly to the exposure they get with their father's careers.  And those that choose to follow that same career path usually develop a bond that only a father and son can experience.  They have the help, support, and more importantly the experience that these racing fathers can lend.
"Racing has brought my dad and I closer together because we both love doing what we do," said 19-year-old Logan Roberson of Waynesboro, Virginia, who captured the RUSH track championships at both Potomac and Winchester Speedways.  "He teaches me a lot as far as racing goes and to have respect for others."
Roberson's father, Greg, continues to race driving for car owner Mike Smiley.  His two rides are a Super Late Model and a Steel Block.  Since the Robersons have four cars in their shop, which includes three MastersBilts with two of the being Steel Blocks, Logan gets the opportunity, at times, to race against his dad. 
"I think it's a blast racing with him because he has way more experience and I can learn from him and it helps me become a better racer."
The driver of the #17 is now in his third season of RUSH Late Model racing and really likes the class.  "I think it's a phenomenal series that is heading in the right direction and on target to take over the entire East Coast.  It's great with the car counts and the rules and gives you something to look forward to.  The Series makes you want to come to the track and race because of all the support RUSH gives to its racers."
Logan, however, can't thank his parents enough for getting him to where he is in his racing career.  "My dad and mom have supported every move I've made," said Logan.  "They give me everything they can for me to be successful in life and I can't thank them enough." 
Damian Bidwell's father, Keith was a racer in the Sportsman's/E-Mod class at McKean County Raceway.   He was quite successful with his two-car operation that had Brent Rhebergen and Alan Dellinger driving his second car.  His last year of racing was his son's first year.  "He gave up racing so I could get started," said Damian.
"He doesn't get to spend time at the racetrack anymore because of his work," said Damian, "but when he's home he's in the garage working of the car to get it ready.  "We have always wanted to put a Modified together so I could run it because he said I would love driving them.  Now that the crate class is growing for the Modifieds, maybe we will put one together to run in the future."
At one time, Damian was part of the Rob/Max Blair race team, but left because he felt he wasn't going to get the necessary information when he's racing against them every weekend.  This past season, Bidwell finished second in weekly points to none other than Max Blair.
Thirty-seven year-old, Brian Knowles, and his 35-year-old brother, Jason, have a lot to be thankful for with regards to their racing father, Larry.  Both Brian and Jason grew up working in the racing shop of their father which helped pique their racing interests.   Brian was 15 when he started racing and Jason was 16. 
"Dad has been a mentor to me," said Brian, who hails from Corning, New York.  "With his racing resume, you listen to what he says.  His work ethic is to go to the track and be 100% ready."
"We have a very strong bond between us," said Brian, the driver of the #7.  "We work together, go to dinner together, go to auctions together, we're just best friends.  And we work together everyday so we better get along."
"Racing seems to keep us together and tight," said Jason, who hails from Addison, New York.  "He's (dad) been a huge help- if it wasn't for him, I wouldn't be able to do what I do."
Larry, the patriarch, was a longtime racer who had a very successful career.  "Growing up, I really never had a driver hero," said Brian, "because when I was crewing for dad, he was that guy.  He was the guy to beat at the track and it's hard to be that guy every week." 
Larry, who is currently 65 years old, retired from full-time racing in 2011, but occasionally, has got back into a racecar since then.  The elder Knowles won a number of track championships and performed his skills not only on the dirt, but on the asphalt as well.  For a five-year period, all three Knowles raced against each other in the Super Stock class.
Being a divorced dad, Larry had his boys on the weekend and that's when he raced.  "They loved being at the racetrack and around racecars," said Larry.  "It was a natural for my boys to be around when I started in the early '90s.  I got addicted to racing because of my dad.  They were at the track and helped me in the shop.  When they got older, they just wanted to race."
The Knowles all work at Don Gross Construction, a company that does residential and commercial construction.  Larry, who started out as a partner, is now the sole owner of the business.  The company is broken up into four divisions; site work, waste management, equipment sales and rental, and heavy transport that also involves snow removal. 
The Knowles also get the opportunity to race against each other on a weekly basis.  "Some nights it's awesome, other nights it's a headache," said Brian of racing against his brother.  RUSH is definitely the reason we participate.  It's the only series that frees up the racer and allows us to concentrate our funding in other areas because of the Manufacturers Nights and the giveaways."
"I enjoy doing it," said Jason, the driver of the #4.  "I guess the biggest thing is that some days you kind of wish he could be in a different class or I could be in a different class.  Both of us are really competitive.  It's very racer friend," said Jason Knowles. "What they put out is very helpful to the drivers."
Incidentally the Knowles finished three and four in the Touring Series points, with younger brother, Jason, coming out on top.  Jason also captured the inaugural Outlaw Speedway track championship, ironically over his Brian by 16 points.
Late Model driver Daryl Charlier of Midway, Pa. has been racing for 14 years.  "I'm not sure if I can tell the difference between our relationship on and off the track," said Daryl of his dad Dale.  "To me it feels like the same place.
Like his son, Dale was an E-Mod racer and still competes at times.  The pair had a number of opportunities over a two-year period to race against each other in a Modified at Pittsburgh's PA Motor Speedway.
"That was a blast," said Daryl.  "There was always constant discussion in the shop as to who would beat who the following week.  I feel it was even more entertaining for our friends and family.  I would say that 99% of my racing knowledge has come from him," said Daryl.  "He was able to setup a car just by watching me go around the track.  I feel that as a local driver, I was able to accomplish a lot.  When I wanted to race, I had to work for it." 
Wyatt Scott has been climbing the racing ladder and according to dad David, he's really into it.  This past season, Wyatt finished sixth in RUSH Late Model points at Stateline Speedway and also captured the $1,000 "Futures Cup" title.
"I feel I have the best mentor in the sport that anyone could have," said 18-year-old Wyatt of his dad.  He's won everything that he's raced and someone I really look up to.  I think I learn something every time I talk to him.  He's a genius."
The 46-year-old "Slow Ride" continues to race an E-Mod and a Super Late Model for two different car owners.  He will occasionally compete in a few races in the RUSH Late Model Division as well, where he will race against his son.  Jim and Jen Scott, Dave's parents, are the co-owners of Stateline Speedway.
Twenty-year-old Late Model driver Eric Wilson became known as "The Shark" because of his prowess racing Go-Karts in his younger days.  His dad, Chris, competed in Semi Late Models and occasionally Late Models during his racing days and captured the Raceway 7 Semi-Late championship in 1984.
Even though, he began his Go-Kart racing career when he was seven, his dad encouraged him to pursue other interests besides racing.  While in high school, Eric excelled in baseball, basketball, and soccer.  "Once he (Eric) got better in racing, the more we committed to move him in that direction."
Three generations of Wilsons have raced:  Grandfather Dale, Father Chris, his twin brother, Mike, and now son Eric. Dale provides the team's motors, while Eric's dad, Chris, is responsible for everything else that includes the fabricating and chassis set-up. 
"Since he used to race, he understands the challenges I face as a driver," said Eric of his dad.  "He's also sacrificed a lot and has worked overtime to help fund the team.  He's put me in good equipment, but he's taught me how to appreciate it.  He's my biggest fan but also my biggest critic."
The RUSH racing series is the perfect series for someone in my position," said Eric Wilson.  "It's an affordable way of racing but it's also extremely competitive."
Seventeen-year-old Clinton Hersh of Somerset, Pa. competed for the first time this past season in the RUSH Late Model Touring Series where he finished 12th in points.  Last season, Clinton won the Futures Cup title and had a pair of wins at Roaring Knob.  This season, he added a victory at Dog Hollow.  His dad, Tony, used to race Street Stocks at Thunder Valley and asphalt cars at Jennerstown.
"Clinton and I have a good relationship," said Tony.  "I try to help him by showing him how to work on the cars and teach him how to set them up for different tracks." 
As mentioned earlier, Jim Johnson, Sr. promotes Genesee Speedway which prompted him to cut back on his racing schedule for 2017.  Both his son, Jimmy, Jr. and his daughter, Sarah, competed at Genesee this past season.  Jimmy finished fourth in Late Model points while Sarah took home fifth place in the Sportsman Modified class.  Besides racing, Jimmy also helps out at the track and works on both Late Models and his sister's Modified.  Incidentally, Jim, Sr. finished 21st in points with a victory to his credit.
"I try to teach both my kids when they started racing that control meant more than speed," said Jim, Sr.  "The smoother they were, the faster they would be.  Off the track, I have told him (Jimmy, Jr.) that he needs four hours of maintenance for every 10 minutes of fun."   He also says that the goal of both of his kids is to win the track championship.
Humberstone Speedway regular Tim Gillespie is carrying on his father, Brian's footsteps.  Brian began racing a '40 flathead Mercury at Humberstone in 1960 and even towed from Canada to Woodhull, NY once in 1974 with a towbar!  Tim began in Go-Karts and eventually moved up to Street Stocks and even built an IMCA Modified together with his father racing at tracks such as Freedom, Eriez, and Woodhull.  After breaking his leg badly in 2010 and suffering from prostate cancer, Brian gave up racing.
"I'm lucky to have him crew chief for me and still help build my RUSH Late Model bodies," explained Tim.  "Sometimes there's a quiet ride home from the track, but mostly all good times which I wouldn't trade for the world.  He loved the father-son picture Vicki (Emig) took of us at Merrittville and has starred at it for a long time.  It is those moments that make racing most enjoyable."
"Eighteen-year-old Colton Ledingham of Port Colborne, Ontario, Canada grew up in a shop with race cars," said his dad Rob Ledingham.  Rob was a racer himself, having competed for 35 years in a number of divisions.   For a period of time, Rob drove the Late Model, while Colton drove in the Truck division.  After Colton spent some time in the Late Model in practice, Rob knew that he was going to be out and his son would be in.  
The Ledingham are a three generation low budget racing operation which makes it so special and fun when they can compete.  Colton has only raced at Humberstone, Merrittville, and Ohsweken, but that could change this year as the team plans on travelling.  Currently, Colton is attending college and majoring in Automotive Engineering.
"He's not only my son, but my best friend as well," said Rob of Colton.  Rob's racing philosophy is simple:  If you can't fix it, don't understand it, or don't work on it, then you're not driving it.
Another Humberstone father-son tandem is Ridgeway, Ontario's Merv and Ken Winfield.  Ken has been a regular in the RUSH Late Model division at Humberstone since 2012.  Merv was a former Six-Cylinder Modified racer at Humberstone competing against Tim Gillespie's father, and now helps his son in the pits every Sunday night.
With his home track being Eriez Speedway, 29-year-old Bruce Hordusky, Jr. went on the road for the first time ever and finished seventh in points in the Sweeney RUSH Late Model Touring Series this past season.  Because of racing, Bruce has had the luxury of having both his dad, Bruce, Sr., and his grandfather, George, being with him on nights and weekends.
Bruce, Sr. has won multiple track championships at Raceway 7 and also has a Stateline-Eriez Circuit championship.  He is fourth in all time Late Model wins at Raceway 7 and is in the top five in wins at Eriez as well.
"My dad has been a great influence on my racing career," said Bruce, Jr.  "It's such an advantage for me to have his knowledge and his experience as a mentor and a crew chief.  I owe everything I have in my career to him.  He was so fun to watch in a 50 or 100 lap event when the racetrack was slick and tire management was critical."
As for the RUSH Series, Bruce Hordusky, Jr. said, "Competing against guys like Max Blair, John Waters, Bryce Davis, and Will Thomas has made my racing program better.  It's great to race under a consistent and fair rules package.  It's been a pleasure for our team to compete with RUSH weekly and I'm proud to support it."
Thirty-four year-old Kyle Zimmerman of Albion, Pa. had the advantage of having a father who spent 35 years in racing.  Keith raced Sportsman, Thunder Cars, and Late Models at various tracks with Lernerville Speedway being his home track.
At 12 years of age, Kyle put his first racecar together, and at 16 became his dad's crew chief.  However, with the rising costs associated with racing, Keith was forced to sell his Late Model motor and retire from racing in 2006.
Kyle's own racing program didn't begin until he was 21, but by 2010 he won the Mercer Raceway championship and the Eriez title a year later.  In 2014, he won championships at both Eriez and Raceway 7. 
As for his father Keith, "He's the mastermind of my racing program," said Kyle, who is very technically oriented. "He is just a wealth of knowledge.  If I can have it my way, I'll be racing and I'm sure my dad won't be far away.  It's something we both love and enjoy doing it together.  Besides, I've been doing this so long I have no idea what normal people do all summer.  The RUSH Series has really been the key to growing the sport in this region and the reason I'm able to race today." 
Twenty-six year-old Jamie Wrightsman of Cortland, Ohio didn't start racing until he was 20.  His career started racing school buses at Expo Speedway before racing full-time in 2010 at Sharon Speedway in the Mini Stock division.  His dad, Jim, started racing in 1979 in a Stock before moving to a Modified and a Limited Late Model.  He raced three nights a week, pulling double duty on many nights, at Raceway 7, Tri-City, and Sharon. 
As for his dad and the help he gives, Jamie said, "Without his help, there would be no way I could be able to race.  He spends countless hours in the garage fixing something or just getting the car ready to go for next week.  We butt heads on certain things...in the end, it all works out, sometimes with me saying I told you so.  I see myself racing with RUSH for years to come...it's an excellent program."
Twenty-seven year-old Brad Mesler of Wellsville, NY began racing Go-Karts against his dad, Bill, when he was 11 years old.  Bill got into a Late Model after his son had, but one thing he always wanted was to beat his son.  Brad remembers back to a night at Bradford when the two of them were coming to the checkered flag and racing for second and ended up in the infield with both cars tore up.
"He was my dad and a friend for life and racing brought a way for me to compete against him," said Brad.
Forty-five year-old Matt Aber of Wooster, Ohio competes at Wayne County Speedway.  His dad, Blaine, has been racing for 51 years.  Blaine has eight track championships to his credit.  He is actually Matt's step dad, but he's raised Matt since he was six years old after the death of his real father. 
"He taught me a lot about life and racing," said Matt of his dad.  "He is my go to guy for everything.  We're more like best friends these days.  At the track, he gives me suggestions, sometimes good, sometimes bad and are each other's biggest fans."
Another driver who has the luxury of having their dad race as well is Mike Duritsky, Jr. of Masontown, Pa., whose dad, Mike, raced Street Stocks.  The younger Duritsky competed against his father in the Stocks before moving up to the Late Models in 2015 where he finished third in the "Futures Cup" points.
2016 RUSH Late Model marketing partners include Sweeney Chevrolet Buick GMC, Pace Performance, Hoosier Tire, Bilstein Shocks, Sunoco Race Fuels, Bazell Race Fuels, Insinger Performance, MSD Performance, Maxima Racing Oil, Jones Racing Products, Alternative Power Sources, Precise Racing Products, ARbodies, TBM Brakes, K&N Filters, Lincoln Electric, Beyea Headers, FK Rod Ends, Bobby Lake Motorsports, Velocita-USA, High Gear Speed Shop, CrateInsider.com, B.R.A.K.E.S., RockAuto.com, and Valley Fashions.
E-mail can be sent to the RUSH Racing Series at info@rushracingseries.com and snail mail to 4368 Route 422, Pulaski, PA 16143. Office phone is 724-964-9300 and fax is 724-964-0604. The RUSH Racing Series website is www.rushracingseries.com. Like our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/rushlatemodels and follow us on Twitter @RUSHLM.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Dickens of a Christmas 2016 Schedule of Events Wellsboro, Pennsylvania



Dickens of a Christmas
2016 Schedule of Events
Wellsboro, Pennsylvania
Friday, December 2
All Day
          Merchant Sales & Discounts
 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
         Professional Dickens Portraits
          Lobby, Deane Center
10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
          Indoor Book Sale      
          Green Free Library
 3:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. 
Indoor Craft Show
United Methodist Church
 3:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
          Indoor Craft Show, Food
          Wellsboro Senior Center
 3:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.  
          Dickens Eve House Tour
          Check-in for tickets/information
          Lobby, Deane Center
 4:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
          Dickens of a Dinner
          Trinity Lutheran Church
 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
          VESTA Art and Craft Show & Sale
          w/music & refreshments
          Gmeiner Art & Cultural Center
 7:00 p.m.
          Movie: “It’s a Wonderful Life”     
          Arcadia Theatre
 7:30 p.m.
          HG Choirs
          Dickens of a Concert
           St. Peter’s Catholic Church

Saturday, December 3
All Day
          Area Merchants Sales & Discounts
 8:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.
Dickens of a Breakfast
With Father Christmas
Trinity Lutheran Church
 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Indoor Craft Show, Food
Wellsboro Senior Center
 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
          Indoor Craft Show
United Methodist Church
 9:00 a.m.
Wellsboro High Dickens Choir
Arcadia Theatre
 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
          Street Vendors & Performers
          Outdoors on Downtown Streets
 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Model Train Show, Cookie Sale
St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
 9:00 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Indoor Craft Show, Food
Wellsboro Firemen’s Annex
 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
          Professional Dickens Portraits
          Lobby, Deane Center
 9:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
          Trolley Rides at 45-minute intervals for
Highland Chocolates Factory Tours
          Parking Lot, First Citizens Bank
10:00 a.m.
          Victorian Stroll
          Outdoor Stage, Deane Center
10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Alternative Christmas Fair
w/refreshments & music
          First Presbyterian Church
10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
          Open House w/refreshments
          Tussey-Mosher Funeral Home
10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
          Lunch, Church Tours, Thrift Shop
          St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Open House w/refreshments
Tioga County Historical Society
10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
          Live Music & Refreshments
          United Methodist Church
10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
          VESTA Art and Craft Show & Sale
          Gmeiner Art & Cultural Center
10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Indoor Book Sale
          Green Free Library
10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
          Clara’s Court story time & crafts
          w/Nutcracker characters
          Lobby, Deane Center
10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
          Festival of Trees
          Goodwill building
          Wellsboro Plaza
10:30 a.m.
HG Productions
“A Christmas Carol”
Coolidge Theatre, Deane Center
11:00 a.m.
          Movie: “It’s a Wonderful Life”
          Arcadia Theatre
11:00 a.m.
HG Productions
“A Christmas Carol”
Warehouse Theatre, Deane Center
11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Open House w/ refreshments
Green Free Library
11:00 a.m.
          New Heights Dance Theater
          “Nutcracker in Motion”
Main Street Window, Deane Center
 12:00 p.m.
Best Dressed Contest Registration
Outdoor Stage, Deane Center
 12:00 p.m.
          New Heights Dance Theater
          “Nutcracker in Motion”
Main Street Window, Deane Center
 1:00 p.m.
          Best Dressed Contest Judging
          Outdoor Stage, Deane Center
 1:00 p.m.
          New Heights Dance Theater
          “Nutcracker in Motion
Main Street Window, Deane Center
 1:00 p.m.
HG Productions
“A Christmas Carol”
Warehouse Theatre, Deane Center
 1:30 p.m.
HG Productions
“A Christmas Carol”
Coolidge Theatre, Deane Center 
 1:45 p.m.
          Movie: “It’s a Wonderful Life”
          Arcadia Theatre
 2:00 p.m.
          Victorian Stroll
          Outdoor Stage, Deane Center
 2:00 p.m.
          New Heights Dance Theater
          “Nutcracker in Motion”
Main Street Window, Deane Center
 3:00 p.m.
          New Heights Dance Theater
          “Nutcracker in Motion”
Main Street Window, Deane Center
 3:00 p.m.
          Wellsboro Men’s Chorus
          Arcadia Theatre
 3:20 p.m.
   Wellsboro Women’s Chorus
   Arcadia Theatre
 3:30 p.m.
HG Productions
 “A Christmas Carol”
Coolidge Theatre, Deane Center
 3:40 p.m.
Combined Chorus Sing-a-long
Arcadia Theatre
 4:00 p.m.
HG Productions
 “A Christmas Carol”
Warehouse Theatre, Deane Center  
 4:00 p.m.
Choral Evensong Service
 St. Paul’s Episcopal Church
 5:00 p.m.
Candlelight Walk for Peace
Packer Park to The Green
 5:30 p.m.
Tree Lighting Ceremony w/Santa
The Green
 7:00 p.m.
          Movie: “It’s a Wonderful Life”
          Arcadia Theatre

Sunday, December 4

11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
          VESTA Art and Craft Show & Sale
          Gmeiner Art & Cultural Center
12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
          Festival of Trees
          Goodwill building
          Wellsboro Plaza
1:45 p.m.
          Movie: “It’s a Wonderful Life”
          Arcadia Theatre
 2:30 p.m.
HG Productions