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Hummingbird Speedway Race Report

August 18, 2012

By: Randy Albert


Derek Rodkey takes his first career late model win in the BWP Bats Steel Block Late Model class holding off some of the best drivers at Hummingbird Speedway on Saturday, August 18, 2012.  In the Street Stock division Brandon Connor capitalizes on a very consistent year with his first win.  Doug Surra and Bryan Warren continue to shine with their victories in the Pure Stock and Front Wheel Drive classes respectfully.  Surra has four wins with Warren making it number three.


Randy Sterling from Morrisdale and Derek Rodkey out of Osceola Mills led the BWP Bats Steel Block Late Model division to the track for the first feature event of the evening at Hummingbird Speedway.  Sterling got a quick jump on the green flag followed closely by Eric Moore from Frenchville on the inside and Rodkey on the outside.  After the first few circuits Rodkey’s machine came alive in the top groove as he moved around Sterling.  Moore made use of the bottom line moving by Sterling on the backstretch.  Also on the move up high was Clearfield’s Chris Farrell from his fifth place starting position.  Sterling lost the handle in turn four relinquishing the fourth position to Charlie Powell from Brookville.  A familiar face, who had been absent from “The Bird” recently, was none other than Luke Hoffner of Turbotville moving into fifth place for the restart.  Rodkey’s car continued to work well along the fence.  He first had to fend off Moore for a number of laps, and then Farrell took a crack at the Osceola Mills driver.  While super competitive, neither drive could manage to edge past the hard charging and high running Rodkey.  Hoffner decided he didn’t want to wait to see the outcome and nosed his steel block into the fray for the second and third position.  Powell was having a good run in fifth with last week’s winner, Dwayne Brooks, right behind him.  Farrell tried and tried again to get under Rodkey in turn two and it looked like he had him a number of times but again and again Rodkey kept his cool and held his line coming out in front as they entered the backstretch.    Hoffner and Moore kept Farrell from getting lonely trading places fighting to get a shot at the leader.   On a caution restart Farrell had a couple more good passes at Rodkey down low but that allowed Hoffner to slip in behind Rodkey up high into second place.  Now it was his turn to see what he had for the leader.  Hoffner had him by a nose for half a lap or so but Rodkey held his line and his cool once again and the 14R car held off the charge and moved back into the lead.  A late race caution gave Hoffner one last chance and he put his car on the driver’s side door of Rodkey’s machine but Rodkey would not be denied a well-deserved win going on to take the checkered flag and his first Late Model win of his career.  He earned it by battling some of the best competitors at The Bird including Hoffner, Farrell, Moore, and Brooks in second through fifth position.  The victory lane celebration was well earned and well deserved.  Heat races were won by Rick Maxim, Luke Hoffner, and Charlie Powell.


Next up for the fans racing entertainment was the Street Stock class.  The honor of being on the pole position was given to Rich Howell from Clearfield with Dave Kohler out of Rockton lining up to his right.  Howell and Kohler raced side by side for a few circuits when something broke on the Kohler machine bringing out the caution and sending Kohler to the pits.  On the restart Howell again took the inside pole with Dustin Challingsworth from St Marys outside.  Brandon and Ed Connor from DuBois were not far behind and neither wasted time in challenging for second place.  After the dust settled from a number of early cautions the racers finally got down to some serious racing.  Brandon Connor moved into the lead nosing under Challingsworth with Ed Connor trying to do the same by racing side by side with Challingsworth for a number of laps.  Behind them Chad Rougeux from Clearfield had his hands full with Fuzzy Fields from Brockway with Fields taking the fourth position away from him.  Brandon Connor stretched out a five car advantage as Challingsworth, Ed Connor, and Fields kept it interesting going three wide in turn two.  Both Fields and Ed Connor worked over Challingsworth’s back bumper with Fields finally taking him on the high side.  Ed Connor made the pass a couple laps later and next in line to challenge for fourth was Kyle Shannon from Brockway.  He had made a comeback from a “back of the pack” restart from an early caution.  A couple of late cautions allowed Ed Connor to jump in front of son Brandon with Fields and Shannon getting into the action.  It was the classic high/low battle forming as Bob Sullinger threw the white flag signaling one lap to go.  At the beginning of the lap Brandon Connor held a slight edge over Ed with Fields looking for a way through the father son duo.  Brandon moved under the flag stand first in front of Ed.  Behind them Fields narrowly edged out Shannon for third and Challingsworth had a good run coming home in fifth.  This was Brandon Connors first win this year in competitive Street Stock class that has seen nine different winners in fourteen races.  He has been at the front all year and is in the chase for the points lead going into next week’s race with his father Ed.  I don’t think Ed is going to give anything away in the final point race of the season next week.  Brandon Connor also won the first heat race in the division with Fuzzy Fields taking the other heat race.


Mike Miller from Rockton and Colton Joiner out of DuBois led the Pure Stock division onto the track in what was to be a very caution riddled fifteen lap feature event.   At the start Joiner jumped to the early lead with Devin Lewis from Weedville moving into second before the first lap was completed.   Shawn Munoz from Punxsutawney was next to challenge Miller nosing under him and taking the third position on lap three.  Doug Surra was the man on the move coming from his thirteenth place starting position in only 4 laps.  Matt Heindl from St Marys was close behind him not wanting to relinquish too many positions in protecting his points lead.  A number of starts and restarts juggled the field and top five with Surra lining up behind Joiner, Munoz and Heindl restarting in third and fourth and Miller still holding onto fifth.  Joiner held a slight advantage over Surra with Munoz and Heindl looking on from a few car lengths back.  Another couple of cautions brought the competitors back together.  With each restart Surra edged up alongside the driver’s door of Joiner looking to take the lead.  He finally made it stick as they took the white flag.  Surra pulled into the lead in turn two.  Munoz slid high in turn two opening the door for Heindl to take the third position away from him.  At the line it was win number four for Doug Surra making him the driver with the most wins for the season in the class.  In second place it was Joiner followed by Heindl, Munoz and with a good fifth place finish, Todd Bailey from Brockway.  Heat race winners included Ben Smith and Devin Lewis.


Front Wheel Drive Four Cylinders lined up behind Jerry Walls out of Sykesville and Bryan Warren from Curwensville for their 12 lap feature.  Walls and Warren stayed side by side as Matt Bryant from Weedville slid high from his third starting spot opening the door for Randy Albert out of Morrisdale to move into third.  After checking up to avoid Bryant, Mike Lucas from Philipsburg moved around him into fourth to continue the chase to reel in the leaders.  On the race’s only caution restart it became the battle of the black cars up front with Warren gaining the edge over Walls and Albert in hot pursuit.  Lucas in his white Honda was not far behind and his wife Stephanie was right behind him racing Josh Rebuck from Brookville for the fifth position.  Walls nosed under Warren a number of times and made the pass with Albert and Lucas close behind. One lap later Warren swung to the low groove pulling up alongside Walls with Albert glued to his tail.  This time Warren made the pass stick giving Walls and Albert the opportunity to race side by side for the second position.  All three cars were highly competitive with some close racing taking place and Mike Lucas not far from the action waiting for the front pack to bobble or provide an opening.  Albert barely cleared Walls when the group came up on lapped traffic.  Warren cleared the back marker coming out of turn four with Albert no being so lucky going into turn one.  The slower car clipped Albert’s left rear corner sending him sideways.  Walls had to check up to avoid the melee and that opened the door for Lucas to move around them all into second place.  Warren opened up a 7 car length lead with Lucas in a solid second.  Albert managed to gather his machine back up and tuck in behind Walls but was running out of laps to regain any positions.  At the finish line it was Warren with his third win this year followed by Mike Lucas, Walls, and Albert.  Coming home in fifth place was the season point’s leader, Chuck White, who moved up from his thirteenth place starting position.  Heat race winners in the Front Wheel Drive division included Matt Bryant and Chuck White.


71 Cars visited Hummingbird Speedway on another classic Saturday night of dirt track racing action.  21 cars were in the Steel Block Late Model feature, 19 Street Stocks competed in their 20 lap feature.  In the  Pure Stock divisions 14 cars made the call with one DNS and 16 cars lined up for the feature of the Front Wheel Drive Four Cylinder group with one DNS. 


Next Saturday is the Season Championship with double points in all divisions.  Gates open at 4:30 pm with heat races beginning at 7:00 pm.  Other future events include a memorial race for Ina Calagarone on September 8th with additional payoff in all divisions and the annual Mick Orsich Memorial Late Model Special planned for September 15th.    Visit the speedway web site at for current point standings, weekly photographs, and more.





BWP Bats Steel Block Late Models

  1. 14R                         Derek Rodkey                   Osceola Mills

  2. 15                           Luke Hoffner                     Turbotville

  3. 53                           Chris Farrell                        Clearfield

  4. 00                           Eric Moore                          Frenchville

  5. 1B                           Dwayne Brooks                                Falls Creek

  6. 11G                        Dan Gill                                 Clearfield

  7. 18                           John Chesnalavich Jr       Reynoldsville

  8. 9                              John Reed                           Reynoldsville

  9. 48 Jr                       Rich Runyan Jr                   Brockway

  10. 10                           Bruce Raybuck                  Falls Creek

  11. 42                           Jason Reed                         Milesburg

  12. 44                           Dan Smeal                           Houtzdale

  13. 94                           Charlie Powell                   Brookville

  14. 36                           Paul Kot                               Brockway

  15. 102                         Rick Maxim                         Reynoldsville

  16. 00S                         Randy Sterling                   Morrisdale

  17. 15W                       Tim Steis                              St Marys

  18. 57                           Bo Lockwood                     Hazen

  19. 0                              Ben Asel                              Kane

  20. 99x                         Kyle Beimel                        St Marys

  21. 15S DNS               Ed Connor                           DuBois


Street Stocks

  1. 05                           Brandon Connor               DuBois

  2. 33                           Ed Connor                           DuBois

  3. 28                           Fuzzy Fields                        Brockport

  4. 1S                           Kyle Shannon                    Brockway

  5. 46                           Dustin Challingsworth    St Marys

  6. 69R                         Brian Rhed                          Brockport

  7. 96E                         Tim Fannin                          Ridgway

  8. 78                           Paul Blake                           Weedville

  9. 137                         Jamie Price                         Clearfield

  10. 105 Jr                     Emory Rinehart Jr            Morrisdale

  11. 68                           Don Henry                          DuBois

  12. 09                           Dennis Asel                        Kane

  13. 3                              Rich Howell                         Clearfield

  14. 7                              Rich Howell Jr                    Clearfield

  15. 94R                         Chad Rougeux                   Clearfield

  16. 00S                         Curtis Teats                        Morrisdale

  17. 8F                           Dale Yeaney                       Brookville

  18. 21Y                         Devin Yeaney                    Brookville

  19. 29L                         Dave Kohler                       Rockton


Pure Stocks

  1. 3                              Doug Surra                          Kersey

  2. 1*                           Colton Joiner                     DuBois

  3. 76                           Matt Heindl                        St Marys

  4. 15M                       Shawn Munoz                   Punxsutawney

  5. 57T                         Todd Bailey                         Brockway

  6. 88                           Mike Miller                         Rockton

  7. 4T                           Randy “Tank” Coombs   Big Run

  8. 44                           Jim Challingsworth          St Marys

  9. 9-11                       Tony Brown                        Reynoldsville

  10. 73                           Devin Lewis                        Weedville

  11. 1S                           Ben Smith                           Penfield

  12. 8                              Cory Silvis                            Brookville

  13. 13 ½                       William Taylor                    Spring Mills

  14. 88M                       Doug Zimmerman            Brookville

  15. 45 DNS                  Tim Steis                              St Marys


Front Wheel Drive Four Cylinders

  1. 5                              Bryan Warren                    Curwensville

  2. 81                           Mike Lucas                          Philipsburg

  3. 92                           Jerry Walls                          Sykesville

  4. 17                           Randy Albert                      Morrisdale

  5. 7K                           Chuck White                      DuBois

  6. 1R                           Josh Rebuck                       Brookville

  7. 74                           Stephanie Lucas                               Philipsburg

  8. 6B                           Frank Barrett III                                DuBois

  9. 10                           Kevin Lannigan                  Shippenville

  10. 2B                           Rusty Murray                     Mayport

  11. 94R                         Richard Sheley                  Reynoldsville

  12. 29Z                         Brittney Johnson              Derry

  13. 34                           Zach Lindemuth                                Brockport

  14. 96                           Matt Bryant                        Weedville

  15. 65C                         Cory Reitz                            Brockway

  16. 97 DNS                  Bryan Sprague                   Reynoldsville