Glenn Styers Becomes SOS Series Champion
Mark Schulz Captures Ohsweken Feature - 9/12/03
By Dave Cook, Media Officer
Grand Island drivers in bold
September 12, 2003 Ohsweken, Ontario. . . The writing on two-year old Teegan Styers’ ‘T’ shirt told the story Friday night at Ohsweken Speedway. “My daddy is the 2003 SOS Champ”.
Immediately following the final regular points race for the Southern Ontario Sprints (SOS) season, the young daughter of track-owner Glenn Styers was busy being photographed while sitting on her father’s knee inside his race car. Glenn Styers had just wrapped up his first ever SOS title with a hard-fought eighth place finish in the feature race, which was won by Mark Schulz of Newfane, N.Y.
Styers had to finish no worse than six places behind runner-up Warren Mahoney of Lefroy, Ontario in order to take the title. Styers cut it close as Mahoney, who finished third, was eight places ahead at the half distance and Styers was having handling problems.
“That was close. I should have finished better but my car was really ‘out to lunch’. It just wanted to push badly when I was running the top line’” said Styers after his popular victory on his home-track.
Being the hometown favourite, Styers’ win overshadowed a superb drive to the checkered flag by rookie driver Mark Schulz.
“The car was awesome. We wrecked at Ransomville last week and so this week Dave Macleod, who owns my car, stepped aside and let me run his car tonight. I have to thank him and also Bud Link who works with us setting the team cars up,” he said.
Macleod said the choice of who was going to drive the team’s remaining car was an easy one. “It went to the fastest guy”.
Schulz started from the third row and steadily moved toward the front. By lap four he took the lead and had no problem with the 20-car field for the rest of his trip to the flag. Cody Geldhart, the sensational 15-year old Mossey, Ontario driver, making only his fourth feature race start in a sprint car, started on the pole but was beat off the line by Dick Mahoney of Newmarket, Ontario. Mahoney held the lead for three tours of the 3-8 mile banked clay oval. Mahoney started to fall off the pace, finally finishing 15th.
By lap seven Keith Dempster of Alton, Ontario, passed Geldhart to pick up the chase but was never really within striking distance. Rookie Bob Crawford of Sutton, Ontario was fourth, Warren Mahoney and his father Dick were running fifth and sixth respectively while Vinnie Christiano Jr. of Tonawanda, N.Y. was seventh.
At the halfway flag Schulz continued with a commanding lead over Dempster and Crawford. Warren Mahoney was fourth followed by Geldhart, Christiano Jr. and Mike Lauterborn of Rochester, N.Y.
Mahoney moved into third place on lap 12 with Crawford, Geldhart, Mike Lauterborn of Rochester, N.Y., Christiano Jr., Adam West of Ridgetown, Ontario, Kyle Patrick of Tilbury, Ontario and Tim Phillips of Grand Island, N.Y. rounding out the top 10.
Caution came out on lap 15 when Phil Armishaw of Mt. Hope, Ontario and Frank Baranowski of Hamilton, Ontario tangled in turn two. It was at the restart that Styers moved into contention for the championship title. He was in 11th place on lap 14, which was not enough to give him the needed points for the championship.
After the restart he moved to the lower side of the track and began to move forward in the field, taking ninth place on lap 15 and then into eighth place on lap 17. That was enough to win the title providing Mahoney stayed put.
“My car was just too tight and I was losing all those positions running on the top side of the track. It was just no good up there. I moved to the bottom and things started to get better,” said Styers.
Kevin Loveys, who is Glenn’s crew chief, said he just misread the track and gave Glenn the wrong set up. “I thought the track was going to change so I tightened the car up too much obviously,” he said later.
Kyle Patrick of Tibury, Ontario wrapped up the Rookie of The Year title with an 11th place finish. Patrick also finished third overall in the series.
Ohsweken Speedway, September 12, 2003
Heat One: 1. Keith Dempster, Alton, Ontario; 2. Bob Crawford, Sutton, Ontario; 3.Tim Phillips, Grand Island, N.Y.; 4. Adam West, Ridgetown, Ontario; 5. Daryl Turford, Stratford, Ontario; 6. Frank Baranowski, Hamilton, Ontario; 7. John Riegling, Chatham, Ontario
Heat Two: 1. Glenn Styers, Ohsweken, Ontario; 2. Dick Mahoney, Newmarket, Ontario; 3. Mike Lauterborn, Rochester, N.Y.; 4. Kyle Patrick, Tilbury, Ontario; 5. Phil Armishaw, Mt. Hope, Ontario; 6. Stephanie Christiano, Tonawanda, N.Y. Did Not Finish; Joel Lehman, Elora, Ontario
Heat Three: 1. Cody Geldhart, Mossley, Ontario; 2. Dave Schulz, Newfane, N.Y.; 3. Warren Mahoney, Lefroy, Ontario; 4. Vinnie Christiano Jr., Tonawanda, N.Y.; 5. Kyle Moffit, Dayton, N.Y.; 6. Keil Woodburn, Sugargrove, Pa.; 7. Neil Fair, Ancaster, Ontario; 8. Jim Porter, Grand Island, N.Y.
Dash; 1. Styers; 2. Dempster; 3. Geldhart; 4. D. Mahoney
Feature: 1. Schulz; 2. Dempster; 3. W. Mahoney; 4. Crawford; 5. Lauterborn; 6.Geldhart; 7.Christiano Jr.; 8. Styers; 9. West; 10. Woodburn; 11. Patrick; 12. Moffit; 13. Phillips; 14. Riegling; 15. D. Mahoney; 16. Fair; 17. Porter. Not Running, Baranowski, Armishaw, S. Christiano
Next Race: Canadian Sprint Car Championships, Ohsweken Speedway, September 27th.