OSWEGO, NY (August 4, 2013) – First time winners have become synonymous with the Mr. Pathfinder Bank SBS event at Oswego Speedway, and the form held true on Saturday night as rookie driver Danny Abt cruised to the title victory worth $1,500 presented by POMCO Group.
Abt snuck underneath Dennis Rupert to complete the event’s first circuit and would go on to out hustle a hard charging Mike Bruce on a late race restart to claim the victory, becoming the first rookie driver to win the Mr. Pathfinder Bank SBS since Dan Ferlito in 1999.
Andrew Schartner, Jeremy Pitcher, and Kreig Heroth would complete the top five in Saturday’s 35-lap event.
For Abt, the surprise win rendered him nearly speechless in Turning Stone Resort Casino Victory Lane.
“I don’t even know what to say,” said Abt. “The car was really good. We made some adjustments for the feature, and the car was great. This is just awesome.”
Mike Bruce, who was forced to leave the Speedway after a blown motor in his No. 22 to retrieve the Heagerty Racing machine formerly driven as No. 79, came on for a great charge at race’s end showing Abt a wheel on a late race restart.
“I was leading for 30-laps and nobody showed me a wheel,” said Abt. “The caution came out there with five to go and I was going for it. He (Bruce) got into me a little bit, but he was going for his first win too. Luckily, I was on this end of it. Mikey is a good clean driver, he race’s hard, and he is going to go for it.”
Jason Simmons, Rob Pullen, Jon Tesoriero, Chris Proud, and Cameron Rowe finished all 35-laps in the front ten positions.
Rupert and Josh Kerr brought the 24-car Mr. Pathfinder Bank SBS field to the green flag with Kerr getting the initial jump on the field. However, caution would fly before one lap could be completed as Jack Patrick, Tim Gareau, and Anthony Losurdo went three wide into turn three.
With Patrick low, Gareau in the middle, and Losurdo high, there was simply not enough room as Losurdo spun out of the groove and into the third turn foam. Patrick and Gareau kept going through the scene, with Losurdo heading pit side in the No. 1. After finishing in the runner-up spot two weeks ago and picking up a heat race win Saturday night, Losurdo would rejoin the field but eventually pulled in at lap 10 with a 23rd place finish.
On the complete restart it would be Rupert this time in the No. 99 gaining the edge as Kerr slipped up the race track. With Kerr slipping high it allowed Abt to follow Rupert through on the low side to take the runner-up spot before quickly diving underneath Rupert down the home stretch the steal the lead coming to complete the first circuit.
With Rupert high on the race track both Pitcher and Bruce would pounce as well, sending Rupert into a back slide through the field.
Caution flags would wave again at lap two as Kerr, Mike Bond, and Dave Cliff, who was behind the wheel of the Four Sevens Motorsports No. 67 for the first time, all tangled in the third turn.
When the green lights came on again Abt and Pitcher began to surge away from the field in search of their first wins in the coveted Mr. SBS event.
Former Mr. SBS, Andrew Schartner, was on the charge from further back in the field behind the wheel of the No. 18 as he dove under Gareau for fourth on lap 6 and began to work at chasing down the front three of Abt, Pitcher, and Bruce.
Another early caution flag would wave on lap eight as early leader Rupert came to a stop in the first turn driving the No. 99.
The restart allowed the field to bunch up one more time with Abt leading Pitcher, Bruce, Schartner, Gareau, Heroth, Brian Sobus, Patrick, Russ Brown, and Simmons.
As the field came back to green the front four of Abt, Pitcher, Bruce, and Schartner gained ground on the remainder of the field with Abt eventually distancing himself from the others.
As Abt drove away Bruce would come alive in the No. 22 making a great low side move on Pitcher into turn three to take second leaving the door open for Schartner to follow through in third. Bruce and Schartner would hook up in tandem now trying to chase down Abt, who had built a half straight lead on the remainder of the pack.
It was clear as the race progressed that on a long green flag run nobody had anything for Abt, as by lap 20 he now had a full straight lead on second running Bruce with a fast lap of 19.299 seconds. Bruce and Schartner were still hooked together on their own running second and third leaving a great battle behind between Pitcher, Sobus, and Patrick for fourth through sixth.
The trio ran tight for several laps with not much room for error. Unfortunately, the tight battle would end at lap 30 as Patrick and Sobus came together in turn four sending both cars around.
Each driver would call it a day ending the night 17th and 18th in the final order.
The restart order with five to go would show Abt ahead of Bruce, Schartner, Pitcher, Heroth, Simmons, Pullen, Brown, Teosriero, and Proud.
With Abt so good on long runs, Bruce knew the restart would be his only shot at victory, and he gave it all he had in the No. 22 coming to green.
Bruce dove low into turn one, appearing to have the line he needed, but Abt was not going to give it up as he slammed the door shut forcing Bruce to back out. At the same time Brown would put his hand in the air in the No. 13 pulling to the pits off the back straight, ending a possible eighth place finish, dropping to 16th in the order.
From there it was all Abt yet again as he sped away to victory for win number one of his budding career.
Bruce, who had the potential to force his way in on Abt to potentially take the lead, talked with Keith Zehr at race’s end after finishing second yet again in the Mr. SBS.
“I knew the speedy dry was going to make it interesting coming off of four on the restart,” said Bruce. “I felt like I got a good run on him (Abt) and I felt like he saw me and then at the last second I didn’t think he saw me. I started to back out and I should have wrecker or checkered it now that I’m out, but Danny Abt – he’s a rookie doing a heck of a job with a great car and a great crew, so congratulations to Danny Abt on his first feature win.”
Bruce said the engine in his primary No. 22 is badly damaged, and he will likely have to look for some new options to complete 2013.
“We’re going to have to talk about doing something here in the next few weeks because the engine is completely cooked in our car,” said Bruce. “I have to give a special thanks to Carlee and Chris Heagerty from HRW Construction, Chris Tedd, my father – all my sponsors; Woodchuck Saloon, Millenium Music and all my sponsors and everyone who helped today on this car.”
One race after pulling into victory lane for the first time in 2013, Schartner was back on the podium in the No. 18.
“The flights coming up here feel a little bit shorter now,” said Schartner. “That was a heck of a night, congrats to Danny (Abt) and Mike (Bruce) also, he ran well. Really all three of us have struggled to start, so hopefully this will be our part of the year.”
Abt would go on to claim the Nice Price Auto Sales Up and Comer Award as well as the Sherwood Racing Wheels Lap Leader Award on Saturday.
The D&S Landscaping Hard Charger was Jon Tesoriero moving from 21st to 8th while Jeremy Pitcher claimed the White’s Car Care 4th Place Award.
Shell Shock Custom Helmet Paint heat race challenge winners were Kerr, Patrick, and Losurdo.
Cliff would go on to win the consolation event.
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To purchase tickets for the 2013 racing season call the Speedway box office at (315) 342-0646.
Saturday, August 3rd, 2013
27th annual $10,000 Mr. Novelis Supermodified/22nd annual Mr. Pathfinder Bank SBS
PATHFINDER BANK SBS
Feature (35-laps): 1. 57 – Dan Abt, 2. 22 – Mike Bruce, 3. 18 – Andrew Schartner, 4. 14 – Jeremy Pitcher, 5. 04 – Kreig Heroth, 6. 98 – Jason Simmons, 7. 2 – Rob Pullen, 8. 47 – Jon Tesoriero, 9. 3 – Chris Proud, 10. 77 – Cameron Rowe, 11. 93 – JJ Andrews, 12. 74 – Mike Bond, 13. 01 – Dalton Doyle, 14. 24 – AJ Bernys, 15. 76 – Scott Shafer, 16. 13 – Russ Brown, 17. 6 – Brian Sobus, 18. 9 – Jack Patrick, 19. 8 – Josh Kerr, 20. 67 – Dave Cliff, 21. 17 – Tim Gareau, 22. 90 – Greg O’Connor, 23. 1 – Anthony Losurdo, 24. 99 – Dennis Rupert
Lap Leaders: Rupert (1), Abt (2-35)
Sherwood Racing Wheels Lap Leader: Dan Abt
D&S Landscaping Hard Charger: Jon Tesoriero
Nice Price Auto Sales Up & Comer: Dan Abt
White’s Car Care 4th Place Award: Jeremy Pitcher
1st Heat (10-laps/6-Qualify): 1. 8 – Josh Kerr, 2. 99 – Dennis Rupert, 3. 17 – Tim Gareau, 4. 04 – Kreig Heroth, 5. 77 – Cameron Rowe, 6. 93 – JJ Andrews, 7. 74 – Mike Bond, 8. 90 – Greg O’Connor, 9. 47 – Jon Tesoriero
2nd Heat (10-laps/6-Qualify): 1. 9 – Jack Patrick, 2. 57 – Dan Abt, 3. 13 – Russ Brown, 4. 18 – Andrew Schartner, 5. 6 – Brian Sobus, 6. 01 – Dalton Doyle, 7. 24 – AJ Bernys, 8. 86 – Bryan Haynes, 9. 76 – Scott Shafer
3rd Heat (10-laps/6-Qualify): 1. 1 – Anthony Losurdo, 2. 22 – Mike Bruce, 3. 14 – Jeremy Pitcher, 4. 98 – Jason Simmons, 5. 2 – Rob Pullen, 6. 3 – Chris Proud, 7. 67 – Dave Cliff, 8. 19 – Nate Noto
Consi (8-laps/6-Qualify): 1. 67 – Dave Cliff, 2. 24 – AJ Bernys, 3. 47 – Jon Tesoriero, 4. 74 – Mike Bond, 5. 76 – Scott Shafer, 6. 90 – Greg O’Connor, 7. 86 – Bryan Haynes, 8. 19 – Andy Noto
PHOTO CREDIT: Bill Taylor