Joey Vital Jr.

It is with heavy hearts that we have to say good bye to another of our racing family.  It is never easy to say goodbye to our loved ones, but to have to do it at such a young age is even harder.  Joey Vital Jr. passed away on September 6 at the age of 22.   Our prayers go out to his fiancé Brittanie Josephson and his daughter Brooklyn.   Joey was a member of the Boyd family that has always been such a big part of the racing family at East Bay.  Our thoughts and prayers are with each of them during this time.  The Celebration of Life Service for Joey will be held at the First Baptist Church of Gibsonton tomorrow, Friday, September 13th at 2:00 PM.   The family will receive friends from 1:00 to 2:00 pm.    Please keep the Josephson, Boyd, Vital and Burnett families in your prayers.

Cumby Scores Florida Late Model Win at East Bay

As the calendar tipped into September, East Bay Raceway Park saw the highest car count of the season as the six-division program brought 119 cars into the jam-packed pit area. The Q Auto & Injury Medical Malpractice Attorneys Wingless Mini-Sprints led the parade as 30 cars signed in for the first round of the Mini Fall Brawl.

The Florida Late Model Series made the first visit of the season to the Clay by the Bay. As race number five of the travelling series schedule, several series regulars made their first visit of the year, but it wasn’t obvious. Point leader Chuck Cumby showed why he holds the top spot, taking the race lead in the late stages of the 25-lap main.

Polesitter Steve Mathis would be the class of the field from the start as Bruce Harvey made a nice move coming off the fourth turn on the first lap to secure second. Harvey would prove to be the early challenger, but Mathis would maintain the point. Meanwhile, Cumby found himself just inside the top five until a restart near the halfway mark. With a powerful drive off turn two, Cumby went from fifth to directly behind Harvey. On a subsequent restart, Cumby was posted outside, but still made the pass to secure second. From there, he closed in on Mathis as leader and runner-up were hunting down lapped traffic. Mathis got caught up behind Dennis Williams and made contact which broke his momentum. Cumby seized the opportunity to grab the lead that would never be given back. Mathis, Harvey and Forrest Gough would secure heat race wins.

The Mini Fall Brawl had originally been planned for August, but weather problems forced the first round to September. The 30 cars contested four heat races, won by Robby Hoffmann, Jamie Tinkham, Austin Craddock and Jordan Feagle. The 15-lap main event saw Hoffmann dive to the bottom to take the lead on the first lap. Tinkham stayed close enough to worry the leader, but soon found himself being pestered by the likes of Zack Amundsen. Deeper in the field, Robbie Smith was making a charge and would soon find Smith in second. All of this was happening behind Hoffmann, who rolled to his seventh consecutive feature win. Hoffmann shared Victory Lane with fellow racer Dusty Cates, who served to spearhead additional sponsorships and prize money for the Mini Fall Brawl, including contingency awards and special prizes for selected spots.

Shane Burrows bypassed race leader Bryan Bernhardt to secure his first victory of the year in the Gagel’s Modified 20-lap main. Burrows was able to slip by as fending off challenges from Josh Sanford, who had a strong run going. Mavrick Varnadore put on a late race charge to move into an eventual second, but Burrows had decided the outcome by that point. Bernhardt, Roger Crouse and Travis Varnadore claimed heat races.

Point leader Austin Martin kept his record perfect by scoring his fourth feature win in as many tries. Martin started the race on the pole, a place he doesn’t particularly like to start, as he stated in Victory Lane. He felt it put him at a disadvantage to learning what the competitors were doing. Still, with his lead, he only had to worry about James McGroarty, who bypassed Martin to lead a few laps, before Martin returned the favor and regained the lead on lap 11. Brian Teeters and Larry Hubbard Jr. claimed heat wins.

V-8 Warrior action was hot and heavy from start to finish as Jason Burnside took the early lead. The leader bobbled on the second lap and then encountered some mechanical issues, exiting the race track. It gave the lead to Gary Lucas, who quickly found himself fighting to hold on with charges from Michael Hart and Raymond Vann. Eventually, it would be Vann who would take the lead and gain his first win of the year. Heat races were victories for Vann and Hart.

Point leader Daniel Bowman helped his cause with his second feature win of the 2019 season in defense of his 2018 track crown. Bowman, who had fuel pump issues with his car in last week’s races, was able to keep himself in the conversation throughout the contest. Bowman, Kyle Bowman and Tracy Maynard scored heat wins.

East Bay Raceway Park will return to action on Sept. 21 with Law Enforcement, Fireman and EMT Appreciation Night. Racing action will see Top Gun Sprints, Street Stocks (Gary Gay Memorial), Outlaw 4s, Q Auto & Injury Medical Malpractice Attorneys Micro Sprints and Florida Old Time Modifieds in action.

FLORIDA LATE MODEL SERIES

Feature: Chuck Cumby (88), Raymond Folwell (3), Steve Mathis Jr. (95), Wayne Reutimann Jr. (00), Bruce Harvey (27), Jason Pope (102), Roger Crouse (15), Tom Fiebelkorn (45T), Josh Peacocok (0), Jimmy Waldrop (9), Phillip Cobb (11), Thomas Burnside (13B), Buck Woodhouse (55), Joe Kump (15K), Dennis Williams (33), Mark Steube (10), Tanner Cobb (03T), Dustin Perez (8), Wesley Livernois (44), Scotty Williams (27W), Forrest Gough (21), Shan Smith (32)

Q AUTO & INJURY MEDICAL MALPRACTICE ATTORNEY MINI SPRINTS

Feature: Robby Hoffmann (66), Robbie Smith (77), Kenny Brewer (45), Zack Amundsen (12), Jamie Tinkham (51), Paige Moss (95), Steve Diamond (9d), Brad Sutton (9), Austin Craddock (17), Kevin McKenzie (7M), Dennis Sanchez (9S), Don Quinn (33), John Crowder (30), Charles Kalck (22), Bruce Comer (21), Donnie Quinn (33D), Joe Askew (78J), Russ Heider (86), Dirk Miller (68), Eddie Moss (23), Jordan Feagle (26), Cody Bryson (30X), David Hall (67), Wayne Feagle (661), Chris Diamond (9c), Mike Meyers (7). DNS – Joe Bartow (3), Dusty Cates (6), Ty Nevins (33N), Camden George (55)

GAGEL’S OPEN WHEEL MODIFIEDS

Feature: Shane Burrows (70B), Mavrick Varnadore (4), Josh Sanford (3), Roger Crouse (15), Bryan Bernhardt (B69), Garret Stewart (67), David Pollen Jr. (88), Seth Geary (7G), Austin Sanders (64), Frank Lewis (72L), Jerry Bourland (777), Randy Shields (69XL), Travis Varnadore (205), Buzzie Reutimann (00), Keven Devrieze (99), Dale Kelley (22), Bill Howard Jr. (47), Drew Jackson (08), Eric Moon (18)

MOD LITES
Feature: Austin Martin (97), James McGroarty (07), Bo Bass (14B), Larry Hubbard Jr. (56), Larry Hubbard III (77), Alex Cline (07c), Andrew Smith (71), Jeff Wolfe (83), Jeff Bonnema (5B), Steve Olone (20), Brian Teeters (44T), David Santee (15), Dalton Ellis (7), Brandon Archer (87A), Aaron Stalling (31A)

V-8 WARRIORS

Feature: Raymond Vann (1), Gary Lucas (23), Juston Meeks (10), George Handy (105), Wayne Kissam (07), Jessica Robbins (09), Kevin Strife (30), Kalen Maynard (2), Macy Bozeman (58), Jason Burnside (12J), Nate Whitehurst (07W). DQ – Michael Hart (99)

STUDIO RED SALON GLADIATORS

Feature: Daniel Bowman (46), Robert Kissam (911), Logan Casteel (7), Ricky Rutledge Jr. (124), Rodney Wingate (8), Kyle Bowman (46k), Alyssa Grant (36g)Nicholas McAllister (97M), Patrick Tabb (03), Terry Burke (16), Rick Rutledge Sr. (4), Bob Zutz (47), Derrick Edwards (17), Kever Raulerson (99R), Rodney Martin (21), Davey Martin (55), Tracy Maynard (62), Johnathan Wood (56). DNS – Chase Seward (20), Rob Ramer (37), David Zemar (13).

Winternationals Schedule Announcement

The 44th annual Winternationals at East Bay Raceway Park will feature 17 nights of racing action wih action starting on January 21 and concluding on Feb. 15.

Featured divisions include UMP/EBRP Modifieds, Street Stocks, Top Gun Sprints,Durrence Layne Chevrolet Late Models, V-8 Warriors/Thunder Stocks, 360 Sprints, Mini Sprints and Micro Sprints. The Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series will make six consecutive appearances in February with the final two races paying $12,000 to the winner.

Ticket prices reflect grandstand prices. Pit Passes are available on the day of the show.

Nosbisch Doubles Down in Pro Late Models

Racers and fans alike took a break from watching the uncertain path of Hurricane Dorian to get back to the business of dirt track racing at the Clay By The Bay. Since the last completed program was almost three months earlier, many were anxious for the action and were greeted with a five-division program that included Twin 20-lap features for the Pro Late Models.

Keith Nosbisch swept the main events, named in honor of his father, with convincing wins on both counts. Nosbisch won the first race, taking the lead on lap three and building a half track lead before a lap 16 caution bunched up the field. Former East Bay track champion Phillip Cobb would be charged with trying to thwart Nosbisch’s efforts, but the eventual winner picked up where he left off to the head to Victory Lane.

In the second event, Nosbisch had his work cut out for him as early leader Jimmy Waldrop would stave off challenger after challenger. When it became Nosbisch’s turn to make a passing attempt, he swept past Waldrop in the fourth turn to masterfully take the lead on lap 12. From there, it was a repeat of race one as no one could provide a serious challenge to the checkered.

The wins are the fifth and sixth for point leader Nosbisch on the 2019 campaign. Cobb and Nosbisch were the class of the heat races as well.

The night began with the V-8 Warriors who opened the feature races with point leader George Handy coming out on top. It was a sweep for Handy, who claimed the heat before nabbing his third main event of the year.

Brandon Yates padded his point lead with a convincing victory in the 15-lap feature. For Yates, it was his third triumph in four attempts. He also scored the heat race.

Street Stock action saw Mike Wilson in position to grab the early lead and defend it against oncoming assaults throughout the early stages. Finally, Tim Gay was able to secure the combination to slip past Wilson. Wilson did not go quietly, staying glued to Gay’s bumper for the next few laps. Gay was able to put some distance between himself and the field to cruise on to his fifth feature of the year. Thomas Pratt rallied back after falling out of the top five to claim a second place run. Pratt and defending track champion John Bradley held top spots in the preliminaries.

The Studio Red Salon Gladiators provided the shining moment of the night as class regular Logan Casteel recorded his first feature victory of his young career, Casteel, who was 2018 Rookie of the Year, has been close to victory on numerous occasions and faced plenty of adversity in his quest for a win. The win came tonight as he had to hold off former feature winners Kever Raulerson and Patrick Fiore through the night’s action. Casteel was not to be denied and a huge throng of supporters greeted him in Victory Lane, including many fellow competitors. Raulerson and Casteel led the night with heat wins.

East Bay Raceway Park will return to action on Saturday, Sept. 7. Scheduled activity includes a $1,000-to-win 25-lap main for Florida Late Models, Gagel’s Modifieds, V-8 Warriors, Studio Red Gladiators, Mod Lites and the opening round of the two-race Fall Brawl for the Q Auto & Injury Medical Malpractice Attorneys Mini-Sprints.

PRO LATE MODELS

Feature # 1 – Keith Nosbisch (02), Phillip Cobb (03), Josh Peacock (0), Megan Meyer (11M), Forrest Gough (21), Jesse Brown (7), Jimmy Waldrop (9), Travis Varnadore (95V), Doug Horton (28), Steve Mathis Jr. (95), Tanner Cobb (03T), Daniel Woody (29), John Norris (87), Waylon Haynes (11), Thomas Burnside (13B), Jason Russell (75R)

Feature #2 – Keith Nosbisch (02), Phillip Cobb (03), Travis Varnadore (95V), Steve Mathis Jr. (95), Jimmy Waldrop (9), Megan Meyer (11M), Waylon Haynes (11), Forrest Gough (21), John Norris (87), Jesse Brown (7), Jason Russell (75R), Doug Horton (28), Josh Peacock (0), Thomas Burnside (13B), Tanner Cobb (03T). DNS – Daniel Woody (29)

V-8 WARRIORS

Feature: George Handy (105), Gary Lucas (23), Jason Burnside (12J), Wayne Kissam (07), Macy Bozeman (58)

OUTLAW 4S

Feature: Brandon Yates (53), Eric Knight (7), Stephen Hohlbaugh (23s), Mark Moniz (41E), Vernon Hart (48), Candice Kealy (D4R). DQ – Alan Weeks (5)

STREET STOCKS

Feature: Tim Gay (90), Thomas Pratt (22), Nick Hebrank (24), Mike Wilson (68), Jerry Bruce (35), Henry Burnside (31), Matt Bozeman (58), Randy Shields (30), Mark Roadarmel Jr. (B75), Billy Barstow (56), John Bradley (57), Doug Johnson (09). DNS – Thomas Braswell (67)

STUDIO RED SALON GLADIATORS

Feature: Logan Casteel (7), Kever Raulerson (99R), Kyle Bowman (46k), Daniel Bowman (62), Rodney Wingate (8), Hunter Lovelady (7L), Rick Rutledge Sr. (4), Nicholas McAllister (97M), Patrick Fiore (88), Ricky Rutledge Jr. (124), Derrick Edwards (17), Patrick Tabb (03), Terry Burke (16), Alyssa Grant (36g), Robert Kissam (911), Robert Zutz (47), Davey Martin (55), Chase Seward (20), Rodney Martin (21). DNS – Tracy Maynard (62)