DAVE MCKNIGHT STEALS MANSFIELD ISMA SHOW FROM LILJE
By Carol D. Haynes
Photos by Jim Feeney
Mansfield, OH – Dave McKnight waited until the last lap of the 40-lap ISMA feature at Mansfield Motorsports Speedway Friday night to steal the win from Vickery, Ohio’s Moe Lilje. But, steal it he did in a "bumping, tire rubbing" move off the fourth turn, as the checkered was about to be unfurled. 2001 ISMA champion McKnight had been winless in ISMA since September of 2001 with his last feature win coming in an MSA event at this very track a year and a half ago. He was hungry. Dave finally was satiated after he moved into second on lap 31 and then closed up the gap on Lilje, driving the Stout 19. Dave and Lilje encountered some slower traffic on the last lap with the pair coming off the fourth turn side by side. McKnight nosed ahead of Lilje to come out in front at the line. He was ecstatic with the long-awaited victory at ISMA’s initial trek to the beautiful half-mile Mansfield oval.
"It’s been a long time coming for the Lucas Oil - Patco Transportation supermodified 94" said the Canadian in victory lane. "It’s been a year and a half now since we won a show. We’ve been fast but the car’s been breaking. We’ve tried to stay focused and the guys put it all together tonight. They did a heck of a job. I didn’t know if I had enough for Moe at the end. We caught up and we came into traffic and that helped out a little bit. We rubbed wheels and we bumped bumpers. It was everything to get by for the win. And, I’m real happy for the team. All it matters is my wheels came across the line first tonight. My hats off to the entire team. They never gave up. We’ve been struggling and I think we’re back."
Lilje, a relative newcomer to the ISMA crowd, but not to the winged supers of MSA, would have liked the end to come one lap earlier. "This was a good race for about 39 laps. The car started getting tight in the last ten laps. I saw on the scoreboard that Dave had gotten into second. I heard him knocking the last five laps, but I couldn’t hold him off. I’m happy with the run. I’ve run this car before in MSA races and had two top fives and a sixth. This is my first run in ISMA and a second is great."
Another relative newcomer, Kyle Carpenter, guided the Lane 97 home in third after having led the first 22 laps. Said Carpenter after his podium finish, "I knew we had a real good starting spot but I had hurt my tire in the practices and the heats. I knew I had to be easy on it. It seemed to clean up and got going pretty good. The car got real loose at the end and I was happy to hang onto a third place and get in a couple pictures."
The first of a two-race series for ISMA began on Friday night at Mansfield with Jennifer Chesbro and Carpenter leading the field down to green. Carpenter grabbed the initial lead with the one and only yellow falling on lap 3 when Rick Wentworth and Justin Belfiore brushed with Wentworth ending up on the hook with a broken radius rod.
On the restart, Carpenter tried to pull away from the 19 of Lilje as the two diced out in front. Jennifer Chesbro held a strong third ahead of Johnny Payne, Joe Grunda and McKnight.
The race progressed at a torrid pace as Lilje dogged Carpenter out front. Coming out of the second turn on lap 22, Lilje made his move and took over the lead as Carpenter prepared for the onslaught from McKnight, who was now in third. Payne, Pat Abold, Russ Wood, Mike Lichty and Chris Perley were still looking to move forward using every inch of the speedway. Jen Chesbro’s good run ended with a flat tire on lap 26.
With ten to go, McKnight moved in on Carpenter and absconded with second, setting his sights on Lilje and a possible win. Abold moved up into fourth with his teammate Russ Wood in fifth as Payne held off Perley who was chased down by Timmy Jedrzejek, as the racing remained intense to the finish in the rapid race.
The white flag dropped for Lilje out front but before the lap was done, McKnight stole the potential first-time victory from the driver of the 19, who settled for second. Carpenter was third but Wood, also on the same lap, took fourth from Abold as Perley took sixth from Payne.
Wood, still getting used to a new car, was satisfied with fourth. "Fourth place isn’t bad. The car was working good. It was getting better and better. It’s still a new car we’re working with. We’re happy with fourth."
Abold, trying to catch up to Perley in ISMA points, was looking for a yellow. "We needed a caution. We needed the thing to stop a little bit to cool the tires down. We basically went the whole race. It must have been a good race for the fans. It was fun on our part. There were a lot of guys loosing their tires at the end. Tomorrow night’s going to be interesting."
Mansfield Motor Speedway (OH) - Friday, August 13
ISMA Lucas Oil-Helping Hands America - Event #11
Heat 1: Jack Smith, Jen Chesbro, Timmy Jedrzejek, Joe Grunda, Eric Shirey, Randy Burch, Sean Sauer, Nokie Fornoro (dns)
Heat 2: Moe Lilje, Russ Wood, Chris Perley, Mike Lichty, Larry Lehnert, Vern Romanoski, Ryan Klingelhofer, Rick Wentworth, Lou Cicconi (Lane 97) dns
Heat 3: Pat Abold, Dave McKnight, Johnny Payne, Kyle Carpenter, Mark Sammut, Dave Shullick Jr., Scott Martel, Justin Belfiore
Feature (40): 1. Dave McKnight (94), 2. Moe Lilje (19), 3. Kyle Carpenter (9), 4. Russ Wood (29), 5. Pat Abold (26), 6. Chris Perley (11), 7. Johnny Payne (88), 8. Timmy Jedrzejek (7), 9. Mike Lichty (84), 10. Scott Martel (14), 11. Joe Grunda (1), 12. Mark Sammut (78), 13. Dave Shullick Jr. (49), 14. Justin Belfiore (8), 15. Vern Romanoski (5), 16. Lou Cicconi (97), 17. Nokie Fornoro (32), 18. Larry Lehnert (92), 19. Randy Burch (52), 20. Jack Smith (09), 21. Jennifer Chesbro (33), 22. Sean Sauer (2), 23. Ryan Klingelhofer (77), 24. Rick Wentworth. (Eric Shirey dns, Mike Ordway, dns -motor in warm-ups)
Epping, NH (Sept. 8, 2018) – The 53rd running of the traditional Star Classic was a poignant one for the nineteen ISMA supermodifieds on hand who had come to run and possibly win the race named for the man who helped develop the class he so loved and brought it to a new level of excellence. Bob Webber Sr., after fighting a vicious illness for some time, passed away in January of 2018 and his family immediately named the race he founded and continued for many years at the New Hampshire oval, in his honor.
Oswego, NY (Sept. 1, 2018) - Saturday night's Jack Murphy Memorial Super Nationals at Oswego Speedway featured more than a little drama with both excitement and heartbreak, some of which started prior to the race's green flag. But in the end Ohio's Timmy Jedrzejek stood in victory lane for his fifth Super Nationals victory of his career and his seventh career-Oswego winged win overall.
The win was a popular one as attested to by the thunder of applause that erupted from the large crowd on hand, as he pulled into victory lane. The driver of the Lane 97 was ecstatic with the win, but also paused to dedicate the race to one who was not there to share the moment this night.
August 23, 2018 - For only $35 per lap you can purchase a lap of the ISMA 150 Star Classic.
This is your chance to sponsor one or more of the 150 laps of this prestigious Supermodified event. Advertise your business or send a message to your favorite driver/ team on a lap of your choice. Laps will be updated on social media, at Star Speedway leading up to the Classic, and announced on Classic day! This is a great way to support your favorite team!
Delaware, Ontario - (August 18, 2018) – Mike Ordway Jr. and the Clyde Booth 61 team had had a particularly discouraging couple races, prior to the Ollie Silva Memorial at Lee USA Speedway on August 10, especially at the Sandusky Hy-Miler where Ordway was the defending race champion. But, they would not stay down too long as attested to by the fact that Mike dominated the 75-lapper at Lee taking the lead at the beginning, picking up a Shea Concrete $1000 halfway bonus along his way to a wire to wire victory. His victory at Delaware Speedway on Saturday was not a cookie-cutter of the Lee win, but more of his racing acumen coming to play as he worked his way up from ninth to the front on lap 68 to take this victory.