It had been since 2000 that an ARCA Touring Series last competed at Flat Rock Speedway, when Frank Kimmel found Victory Lane. This last Saturday marked the return as the ARCA Menard’s Series East invaded the quarter mile “Level Pebble”
Billy Venturini filed an entry for his first race, since he last competed in 2007 in an ARCA Series event at Talladega. Billy is NOT coming out of retirement, but Flat Rock was a track he never had the opportunity to race at and he couldn’t resist adding it to his resume. His dad, Bill was a three time winner there, and Billy did the family proud with a 4th place finish.
Scoring the win in the Gibb’s Racing #18 was 16 year old Eden Prairie, Minnesota racer William Sawalich, who has been pretty impressive this season driving in ARCA, NASCAR Trucks, and Trans Am. Local race fans may remember him from winning at Toledo Speedway in the ARCA/CRA portion of the Glass City 200 last September. Sawalich bided his time in fourth place in the first half while saving his tires before a charge into the lead following a restart. He traded paint a couple times with early leader Sean Hingorani before grabbing the lead and pulling away in the closing laps.
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Chris Benson #51 was oh so close the prior week in a heartbreaker, but made up for it with a dominating performance at Flat Rock in a all green 50 lap Moran Chevrolet ARCA Outlaw Late Model feature on the 2nd week of competition at the quarter mile. It was Benson’s first visit to the Monroe Asphalt Winner’s Circle since 2008 with a popular victory.
Ken Schrader followed up his School Bus F8 win the night before by driving the Rob Moore #82 Street Stock to a top 10 finish in Flat Rock Speedway’s most competitive division.
Lance Lipasek #99 took the win in the 25 lap DTS ARCA Street Stock “A” feature with a hard charging Greg Studt glued to his rear bumper, while Ian Jezylo #00 won the 15 lap Street Stock “B” feature.
Defending R&M Recycling ARCA Figure 8 champion Dennis Whisman Jr. #2 earned a hard fought win over Greg Studt in their 20 lap feature race.
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Ken Schrader has competed (and won) in nearly every type of racing you can imagine, but now he can list a School Bus Figure 8 win on his extensive racing resume. Ken bested his nemesis, Jack “the Flipper” Franzil, “Turnover” Terry Smith, Dave Lambert, Sam Mills, AJ Padgett, and Bob Mikolajczyk in the exciting event in front of a raucous crowd.
In other action, Dave Lambert won both the Flagpole race and the Boat Figure 8.
In Toledo Speedway regular divisions, Ron Allen #69 captured the Salenbien Excavating ARCA Late Model Sportsman feature, while Josh Bunting #18 won the Safety Kleen ARCA Factory Stock feature race. It was Bunting’s first time behind the wheel after a hiatus of several years
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Flat Rock Speedway opened for their 71st year of racing with all three of the regular divisions competing on the quarter mile “Level Pebble”
Winners were Justin Claucherty #7 of Clark Lake, Mi who scored his first win at Flat Rock in the Moran Chevrolet ARCA Outlaw Late Models. It was a fantastic race with Justin, Chris Benson #51, Connor Zbozien #45, Eric Lee #5 all battling for the win and swapping positions the entire 50 laps. Benson nearly pulled off the win, but was passed by Claucherty in traffic coming to the white flag.
Justin has competed at Flat Rock for several years in the long distance Joy Fair Memorial 100 and Stan Yee Memorial 150, however this was the first time he found himself in the Monroe Asphalt Winner’s Circle.
Feature winners of the evening were
- Justin Claucherty #7 in Moran Chevrolet ARCA Outlaw Late Models
- Jeremy Vanderhoof #4 in the Drive Train Specialists ARCA Street Stock “A” division
- Troy Brehmer #42 in the DTS ARCA Street Stock “B” division
- Greg Studt #33 in the R & M Recycling ARCA Figure 8 division
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Flat Rock Speedway opened it’s 71st season with a pair of open practice days. The festivities were shortened by rain on the 1st Practice weekend, but the drivers still got to hit the track for the first time in 2023. The last weekend was much drier, and 40 cars showed up in preparation for Opening Day on May 6.
Always great to see all the hard work that everyone put in during the off season as well as some of the more familiar cars that have changed hands and numbers.
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Put-In-Bay, an island located in Lake Erie in Ohio, was the site of vintage road races in the 50’s. This tradition was restarted in 2009 as homage to the events of the days past. While the original course was run through the street of the town, it is now located on the airport runways, which was common in road racing in the 50’s. In another throw back to that era, the course is delineated with hay bales. The race cars are divided into several race groups depending on speed. This is my 2nd visit and it looks like I am making it an annual event.
Photo Gallery can be viewed by clicking on the link below.. All photos are available for purchase.
Sebring, Waterford Hills & Put-In-Bay Road Racing Photos | Level Pebble Racing Pics (levelpebblepics.com)
Corrigan Oil Speedway racers, families, crew, staff, and fans celebrated the 2021 race season in style at the Michigan State University Kellogg Center on Saturday January 8. Congrats to all !
Performing as Master of Ceremonies for the evening were track announcers Matt Prieur and Sean Sprague, with the band Radio Tokyo providing the post award entertainment.
This was the inaugural season for track owners/promoters Tom & Tracey Hernly and they greeted all those in attendance with the 2022 season schedule and what was in store for the upcoming season. The overwhelming consensus was by all that it was an outstanding season and everyone can’t wait for 2022 !
I will be the track photographer for 2022 and looking forward to getting to know everyone. I did work for the track from 2012-2014 as the website writer, so happy to be back.
All photos are available for sale hi resolution and unwatermarked. Details on ordering on the “Order” tab on the top of the website home page.
There is no method to order on line, but contact me by email or message me if there is something you want. Each picture has a number associated with it if you hover over it with a mouse, send me a screenshot, or just tell me “Row 8, Picture 2” etc.
If you want to order a picture of a driver with trophy, just let me know what division and what place they finished in points and I can find it that way.
Racing, legends encompassing all types of motorsports were inducted into the Michigan Motorsports Hall of Fame in n induction ceremony in Mt Pleasant, Mich. on November 13, 2021.
Inductees represented Oval Racing, Drag Racing Road Racing, Rally Racing, Snowmobile Racing, and involvement as Officials, Crew Members, and Speed Shop owners.
Class of 2020
- Ron Allen
- John Bugenski
- Dick Crup
- Rusty Daggett
- Scott Diehl
- Arlen Fadely
- Danny Kellermeyer
- Brett Mann
- Chet Miller
- Eldon Schrader
- Dana Wiltse
Class of 2021
- Joe Boyer Jr.
- Angelo Giampetroni
- Scott Harvey
- Gary Howe
- Ed Inloes
- Poncho Rendon
- Doug Shepherd
- Gorilla Racing (Chris & Chuck Silva)
- Billy Simmons
- Ben Snider
Photo gallery below; all photos available for purchase