Southgate, MI—November 2, 2018: Race teams, officials, family and friends gathered Friday evening at the Crystal Gardens Banquet Center in Southgate, MI for the annual Flat Rock and Toledo Speedways Awards Banquet. Each of the champions received their championship jackets and banners from ARCA President and Flat Rock/Toledo owner and promoter Ron Drager. Over $30,000 in cash and contingency awards were distributed at the annual event.
Prior to dinner, sponsor Pat Moran and driver Greg Studt were honored. Pat, through his Moran Chevrolet business, was presented the ARCA lifetime membership Gold Card for his support of the Late Model division. Moran has served as the Flat Rock Late Model division title sponsor for the past 12 seasons, and has been a sponsor of the Late Model Gold Cup Series for 5 years.
Second-generation driver Greg Studt was presented an ARCA ring, signifying his 10 ARCA track championships. In 2016, Greg captured the Flat Rock Street Stock title, and in doing so, became the first driver ever in track history to win a championship in each of the track’s 3 weekly classes-Late Model, Figure 8 and Street Stock. In addition to those titles, Greg has also captured Late Model, Figure 8 and X Car championships at Toledo.
Flat Rock’s ARCA Moran Chevrolet Late Models were presented their point fund checks and trophies. Jimmy Thiel captured his first-ever track championship. Jimmy and his car owners Dusty Whitney and his father, Rich Thiel, accepted the championship trophies and a check for $1500 from Pat Moran of Moran Chevrolet. Craig Everage, Paul Pelletier, Frank Jiovani, Stan Yee Jr., Jeff Vrsek, Chris Benson, Derrick Sheppard, Joe Hawes and Justin Schroeder completed the top ten in the final point tally.
Make it 4 titles in a row for Billy Earley in the Flat Rock ARCA Victory Lane Quick Oil Change Figure 8 division, giving him 5 in his career. Billy topped Dennis Whisman Sr. for the championship. Dennis Whisman Jr., Eugene Worden, Jeremy Miller, Travis Earley, Ethen Lambert, Dave Lambert, Jeremy Vanderhoof and David Katatiasz were next in line in the final point tally. Victory Lane Quick Oil Change representative Jim Harrington presented the point fund checks and trophies.
The ARCA DTS Drive Train Specialists Street Stock class saw Grant Hedges notch his second Flat Rock Street Stock title over 2017 champ Ray Morneau Jr. by just 25 points. Grant brought his infant son with him to the stage as he accepted his championship trophy. Jeff Hedges, Grant’s father, received a trophy and jacket from Grant for his efforts. Third spot went to Jeff Metdepenningen, fourth to Greg Studt, while Clarity Patton finished fifth. David Liaeff, Guy Fire, Rob Moore Jr., Steve Searles and Craig Lange completed the top 10. Searles was named the Rookie of the Year for the class.
Adam Jezylo captured the 2017 DTS Drive Train Specialists ARCA Street Stock B Main title, and this year, it was his father, Ian at the top of the pack. The championship was Ian’s first-ever in his racing career. LJ Farmer, Rich Abel, Anthony Camilli, James Pankow, Jerry Farmer, Gary Navarre, Vaughn Chambless, Dillon Zalenski and Wilburn Parks.trailed the champ in the final point standings. LJ Farmer captured the B Main Rookie of the Year honor.
The Monroe News Enduro Series championship went to another second generation driver, Derrick Sheppard. The battle went to the final race as Derrick edged out Kyle Metdepenningen by 20 markers. 2017 champ Robb Remick, Rick Bennett, Troy Brehmer, Nathan Sprotberry, Cody Remick, David Rumble, Tony Rumble and Dillon Zalenski finished out the top ten.
The ARCA Late Model Gold Cup Series title went to Frank Jiovani, notching his second Gold Cup championship in a row. Frank also captured his first victory at Toledo in the process. The series is made up of races at both Flat Rock and Toledo. Brian Bergakker, Justin Schroeder, Jimmy Thiel, Chris Benson, Steve Needles, Craig Everage, Paul Pelletier, Dennis Strickland and Albert Francis were next in line for the top 10.
The ARCA Aramark Uniform Services Late Model Sportsman division crowned Howard Kelley Jr. as the champ, his third title in the class and second in a row. Tommy O’Leary IV came home second, just 25 points behind the champ. Greg Stilwell and Landon Schuster tied for third, with fifth to Jim Froling. Andy Harding, Kent McCloskey, Robert Meiring, Dan Grigsby and Craig Osenbaugh (tie for 9th) trailed in the final standings. Meiring was named the Rookie of the Year. Greg Oberle of Aramark presented the checks and trophies to the drivers.
Mike Young was the champ in the 3-race Silver Cup Series for the Late Model Sportsman, sponsored by
R & M Recycling. Mike edged out Froling by just 5 points for the title. Mike called his father, car owner Paul Young, to the stage and presented him with a Silver Cup. O’Leary IV, Kelley Jr., and McCloskey completed the top 5.
17 year old Ethan Stadniczuk topped the ARCA Factory Stocks at Toledo to claim his first title belt over Jacob Thomas, Craig Osenbaugh, Matt Ringger, Adrian Sharp and Mike Miller (tie for 5th), Randy Padgett Jr., Jesse Carrillo, Kyle Worley and Paul Martell.
Greg Stilwell, Jim Froling, Kent McCloskey, LJ Farmer, Jerry Farmer and Rob Moore were the random draw winners for product certificates from AR Bodies.
A bonus program posted by Corrigan Race Fuels at Flat Rock and Bazell Race Fuels at Toledo awarded cash bonuses to the top Sunoco Race fuel purchasers for the season. Greg Stilwell, Landon Shuster and Robert Meiring were the Toledo recipients, while Dennis Whisman, Billy Earley, Derrick Sheppard, Justin Schroeder, Clarity Patton and James Pankow collected the Flat Rock bonus money.
Point fund and contingency award sponsors for 2018 included Moran Chevrolet, Victory Lane Quick Oil Change Centers, Aramark Uniform Services, ARCA, AR Bodies, B & H Race Parts, DTS Drive Train Specialists, Five Star RaceCar Bodies, Hoosier Tire, Penske Shocks, R & M Recycling, Bazell Race Fuels, Corrigan Race Fuels and Sunoco Race Fuels. Gold Cup sponsors included Moran Chevrolet, DTS Drive Train Specialists, Diamond Racing Products, Dani’s Transport, Royal Truck and Trailer, Francis Engineering and HABCO Tool and Development.
The winter office for both tracks may be contacted by calling 419-727-1100. The 2019 schedules will be released around the holiday season. Always check the official websites at www.flatrockspeedway.com, www.toledospeedway.com or www.arcaracing.com.