MONTIETH CLAIMS FIRST CAREER TRACK CHAMPIONSHIP;
Jeff Rohrbaugh 358 Sprint Champ; Gallagher Thundercar Titleist
YORK, PA, 11/22/08 - Lincoln Speedway track champions and special year-end awards were handed out at the Holiday Inn in York Saturday night, November 22nd. Close to 400 people were in attendance to watch the crowning of the 410 sprint, 358 sprint, thundercar, and 358 late model champions for 2008. The top ten finishers in the season -long point series for all four divisions were honored as well as special awards.
MONTIETH CLAIMS CAREER FIRST CINDY ROWE TRACK CHAMPIONSHIPSheer determination and year-long consistency was the formula which helped Phoenixville’s Brian Montieth dethrone all-time winner Fred Rahmer en route to his first-ever Cindy Rowe Auto Glass 410 sprint car championship at Lincoln Speedway in 2008.
Despite racing an entire season without winning a race, the driver known as "the Edge" thrilled the fans by passing hundreds of cars on his way to 10 top-five and 22 top-ten finishes in 22 races during the season.
It was also the first-ever track title for car owner Jerry Parrish and sponsors Premiere Auto Works and Auto Locator. Montieth’s title also secured the mechanic of-the-year award for chief wrench Scott Zellers.
Sportsmanship award winner Cris Eash of Hanover completed a comeback from retirement to pick up four wins, nine top-five, and 19 top-ten finishes. In the process, Eash climbed to sixth on the all-time Lincoln win list with 42 career wins.
Salfordville's Fred Rahmer, driving the Chad and Jenn Clemens-owned C&S Lawn & Landscaping/Miller Brothers Automotive/Bair’s Tree Service/Materials Handling Systems/Media Camping Center No.51 sprinter, finished third in season points. Though finishing with a season-leading seven wins, 19 top five, and 22 top-ten finishes, the ten-time track champ could not repeat after missing several shows during the course of the season. He continued to rewrite the Lincoln Speedway record-books by upping his all-time Lincoln win total to 161.
Spring Grove’s Niki Young completed his final season with the Neiderer Sanitation team by picking up the season opener (his only win of the season) and scoring four top-five and 17 top-ten finishes.
Alan Krimes of Denver scored two wins en route to a fifth-place finish in season points. He also had 11 top-five and 19 top-ten finishes during the season.
Completing the top ten in season points were Chad Layton, four-time winner and 2006 track champ Doug Esh, Nick Schlauch, Jr., one-time winner Jim Siegel, and Aaron Ott.
Other Lincoln winners included 2008 Most Improved Driver Cody Darrah (who picked up his first career win on a two-win night and added a third win later in the season), Stevie Smith (two wins), Lance Dewease, Greg Hodnett, Jeff Shepard, Jim Siegel, and first-time winner Mike Bittinger.
The rookie of-the-year was teenager Adam Lawrence, who moved up from the 358 sprint division to compete regularly in 2008. He recorded one top five and three top-ten finishes at one of the most competitive Saturday night tracks in the nation.
SPECIAL AWARDS WINNERS (410 Sprints)
Super Sprint Champion - Brian Montieth
Mechanic of the Year - Scott Zellers
Rookie of the Year - Adam Lawrence
Sportsmanship Award - Cris Eash
Most Improved Driver - Cody Darrah
JEFF ROHRBAUGH CLAIMS FIRST-EVER KEIZER LINCOLN SPEEDWAY ALUMINUM WHEELS TRACK CHAMPIONSHIP
Like the Lincoln 410 sprint car champ, West York’s Jeff Rohrbaugh claimed the 358 sprint car track title without scoring a feature win in 2008.
Without question, Lincoln was the most competitive 358 sprint car track in the nation, with 11 different winners in 13 events. The only repeat winner at Lincoln in ‘08 was Aaron Ott, who finished well out of the top ten in the point standings. And the points leader changed nearly every week.
Rohrbaugh, driving the Roy Vincent Racing #7V, recorded a series-leading seven top-five and nine top-ten finishes in those 13 events, and didn’t secure the championship until the final 358 race of the season.
One of the season-long points contenders, Scott Geesey, recorded two top-five and eight top-ten finishes to end second in points.
Gerard McIntyre, Jr. hung on to third in points in a spirited battle with Billy Dietrich that down to the final week. McIntyre recorded five top-five and six top-ten finishes, with Dietrich picking up one win, three top-five and seven top-ten finishes along the way to finish fourth in points.
Tim Wagaman III completed the top five in season points with only two top-ten finishes.
Four of the top five drivers in season points did not win a Lincoln race in 2008.
One-time winners Dale Hammaker, Danny Dietrich, and Chad Criswell (who received both the Most Improved Driver and Sportsmanship Awards at the banquet) finished sixth through eighth in points. Glenndon Forsythe and Adam Wilt completed the top ten in season points.
Six different drivers picked up their first Lincoln career wins in 2008, including Ott (3 wins), Criswell, Denny Gross, Kevin Nouse, Kevin Nagy, and rookie of-the-year Ricky Stonebraker.
Dale Hammaker was the leading heat winner (five), and Ott led the most feature laps (53). Ott also set a new 10-lap track record (2:24.16).
SPECIAL AWARDS WINNERS (358 Sprints)
358 Sprint Champion - Jeff Rohrbaugh
Rookie of the Year - Ricky Stonebraker
Sportsmanship Award - Chad Criswell
Most Improved Driver - Chad Criswell
SAM GALLAGHER CLAIMS FIRST CAREER LINCOLN SPEEDWAY THUNDERCAR CHAMPIONSHIP
Hanover’s Sam Gallagher recorded a division-leading five wins and rode a wave of consistency en route to his first career Lincoln Speedway Thundercar track championship in 2008.
Though Gallagher led the point standings most of the season, the Hanover racer had to keep looking in his rear-view mirror for second-generation racer Mike Slaybaugh, who stayed within striking distance down the stretch, preventing Gallagher from clinching the track title until the next-to-last race of the season.
Gallagher’s five wins, coupled with 17 top-five and 18 top-10 races in 22 events, made him the obvious class of the field in one of the most competitive support divisions in Central Pennsylvania.
Slaybaugh, son of legendary racer Kenny Slaybaugh, picked up one win along with seven top-five and 14 top-10 finishes in 2008 en route to his best season ever at the Pigeon Hills oval. The season had contrasting highs and lows for the Abbottstown racer, as he endured the passing of his father at mid-season. But he was able to fight through the painful loss to record an emotional crowd-pleasing second career win a few weeks later. Slaybaugh also received the coveted Sportsmanship Award at the banquet
Gettysburg’s Scott Fisher did not pick up any wins in 2008, but used his four top-five and 13 top-10 finishes to finish a career-best third in the final point standings.
2008 Most Improved driver Gino Comi broke through in a big way in 2008, as he not only recorded his first career win, but added two more during the course of the season and instantly became one of the fan-favorites every week. In addition to his three wins, the Pylesville, MD racer recorded 6 top-five and 14 top-10 finishes to end up fourth in the season-long points race.
Finishing fifth in season points was Gettysburg’s Kyle Martin, who scored 7 top five and 12 top ten finishes.
Sixth through tenth in points were Larry Neiderer, Justin Mong, one-time winner Danny Beard, Jimmy Combs, and rookie of-the-year Mikey Guise.
All told, six drivers recorded career first wins in the thundercar division. At the top of the list was Gettysburg’s Brian Walls, who won four times overall during the course of the season. Ronnie Thomas (2 wins), Danny Beard, Doug Bennett, and Brad Shank were the new winners.
There were ten different winners during 2008.
Brian Walls was the leading heat winner and led the most feature laps in his breakout season.
SPECIAL AWARDS WINNERS (Thundercars)
Thundercar Champion - Sam Gallagher
Rookie of the Year - Mike Guise
Sportsmanship Award -Mike Slaybaugh
Most Improved Driver - Gino Comi
GENE KNAUB CHAMPION IN MALCO LANDSCAPING 358 LATE MODELS
Three-time winner Gene Knaub of Dover claimed the 2008 track championship in the 358 late models after building a huge points lead by winning the first three races of the year.
Mike Walls, Dave Sokoloski, Fred Harden, and Roy Warehime all ran consistently to finish second through fifth in season points.
Two-time winner Bobby Beard, Roy Miller, Travis Mease, Jake Lettich, and Craig Wagaman (the other 2008 winner) finished sixth through tenth in points.
In addition to being the track champ and leading feature winner, Knaub was also the leading heat winner (3) and feature lap leader (50) on the season.
Don’t forget to check-out Lincoln Speedway On-line at http://www.lincolnspeedway.com for all the final results of the 2008 season along with statistics and point standings. The 2009 Lincoln Speedway schedule is still being finalized and is planned for release in the near future. This we do know, Lincoln will host its traditional Northeast Season Opener featuring the 410 sprints in the Ice Breaker 30 on Saturday afternoon, February 28, 2009. Gates will open at noon, with the first official green flag waving at 2 PM.