Mercer Raceway Park mourns the passing of George Shaffer, father and crew chief of Sprint Car driver Aaron Shaffer. George was a welcome and familiar site in the Mercer pits, always wearing his work apron and always a huge smile for anyone and everyone.
There will be a memorial service on Sunday August 19th at Alpine Valley, the ski resort that George owned and operated in Chesterland, Ohio. A formal service will begin at 2pm followed immediately by a celebration of his life from 3-5.
We send our sincere condolences and prayers to the Shaffer family.
Mercer, PA (July 21, 2012): Adam Kekich scored his first career victory in the Sprint Slugout for Luxaire Heating & Cooling Sprint Cars in a thrilling battle with Jack Sodeman, Jr. and Brandon Matus. Steve Drevicki held off a furious rush by Tim Buckwalter and Alex Bright in the final laps of the ARDC Midget main.
In a non-stop race for the Ti22 Performance Outlaw Sprint Warriors, Jimmy Morris led wire to wire. The Precise Racing Products Open Stock winner was Bob McCann.
Kekich entered the night full of confidence. He was joking around with his best friend, Brandon Matus. Matus said that he was going to win, and Kekich siad, "not so, buddy, I think tonight's going to be my night." Little did they know that they would finish one-two.
At the drop of the green for the 30 lapper, Jack Sodeman, Jr. sped away from the rest of the Luxaire Heating & Cooling Sprint Cars. However, he was not able to get too far ahead of two youthful rivals, Adam Kekich and Brandon Matus, becasue several early yellows slowed the pace. The final caution occurred on lap 5, for Francis Sesco, and the remainder of the race was run without interruption.
Mercer, PA (July 15, 2012): Former asphalt racer, Will Thomas, III, took the top honors in the return of the FASTRAK Northeast Regional Touring Series to its former home track, Mercer Raceway Park. Kyle Fink roared to his second win of the season in the Approved Toilet Rentals 358 Modifieds.
Curtis J. Bish led wire to wire in the Precise Racing Products Stock Cars, while Tyler Fulton held off Wally Stearns in the Mini Stocks.
The TI22 Performance Outlaw Sprint Warriors winner was Mike Miller, for the second time this season. Also chalking up win number two was Shane Pfeuffer in the Modified Lites presented by Big Daddy's Speed Center and Rock Concrete.
Dan Angelicchio rode the cushion into the lead on lap one and dominated the early going. However, Josh Double was nipping on his heels. Double pulled even once, on lap seven, but he bobbled, allowing Angelicchio to slip away. Taking advantage of the miscue was Thomas, who had running a close third.
Thomas closed in on Angelicchio, and used a power move in turn four to grab the lead on lap 10 just before the caution flew for Brad Kling. The double file restart allowed Angellicchio to draw even and he got the run off turn four to lead lap eleven. He maintained control through a pair of cautions on lap twelve.
Mercer, PA (July 7, 2012): Rod George took his second checkered flag of the weekend when he romped to the Luxaire Heating & Cooling Sprint Car win at Mercer Raceway Park. J.R. McGinley, grandson of venerated drivers Dick Rankin and Johnny McGinley, took his first career victory in the non-stop Approved Toilet Toilet Rentals 358 Modified feature.
Todd Gabriel was declared the winner in the Mini Stocks when Leo Hanlon's car failed a post-race inspection.
Chris Matthews scored his first win at Mercer Raceway Park in the Ti22 Performance Outlaw Sprint Warriors. Jeff Teeters sped to victory in the Modified Lites presented by Big Daddy's Speed Center and Rock Concrete.
The Precise Racing Products Stocks went to Shaun Hooks, who was making his first start at the Park in 2012.
A shower hit the track around 3:30 and the added moisture delayed the start of festivities by about half an hour. However, the track was perfectly manicured, and the racers provided an exciting night of action.
Eric Williams and Brandon Matus, two of the division's recent winners, started on the front row of the Luxaire Heating & Cooling Sprint Car feature event. While Williams did grab the early lead, Rod George, who pulled Williams' pill, moved into second.
Williams paced the field for the first twelve laps. However, he got hung up in lapped traffic, and that allowed George to drop to the inside of turn four and pull him off the corner to grab the lead on lap 13.
Mercer, PA (June 30, 2012): Mike Lutz celebrated his reunion with car owner Jim Chappel by taking the potent number 8 to Victory Lane in the Luxaire Heating & Cooling Sprint Cars. Lonny Riggs won the two-lap shoot-out with Jimmy Holden to capture the win in the Approved Toilet Rentals 358 Modifieds.
Dennis Wagner pleased all of the children in the Kids' Club, as he took his first checkers of the season in the Ti22 Performance Outlaw Sprint Warriors. Earlier in the evening, he was the meet and greet driver during their pit tour. He graciously invited all of them back to the remote Victory Lane for a photo opportunity.
Shane Pfeuffer returned to the seat of his Modified Lite and snapped the long winning streak of Mark Marcucci. Pfeuffer had been sitting out due to injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident.
Russ Byler edged Bob Schwartzmiller in the Precise Racing Products Stock Cars, while Tyler Fulton was victorious in the Mini Stocks for the first time in his young career.
The night was capped off with a spectacular fireworks display courtesy of Pizza Joe's.
Mike Lutz was thankful, and apologetic, in his post-race interview. "First of all, I want to apologize to Mercer Raceway Park for my actions last year. What I did was wrong and I apologized to my car owner and I thank him for giving me a second chance."