Tom Fedewa Wins at Kalamazoo

By Mike Strevel

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (May 17, 2003) –
The Kalamazoo Speedway was host to the Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper Super Sprint Series Saturday evening and capturing his second win of the season was Tom Fedewa. The driver of the Katz Well Drilling car was nearly perfect at the ultra quick 3/8 mile oval by qualifying second fastest, winning his heat and taking the checkered flag in the 30 lap main event. This is after his father Gary had won the last five consecutive AVSS races at Kalamazoo.

The day began with Hamilton Trucking qualifications and rookie sensation Brian Lay of Millbury OH became the fastest man ever to qualify at Kalamazoo with an amazing time of 10.928! This earned the young racer who picked up his first ever feature win last week at Owosso a total of $200.00 for setting fast time and breaking the track record set by Bill Tyler in 2000 at 10.999. It was T.Fedewa second at 10.929 and Kevin Newton third at 11.061.

The three AVSS heat races were next and they were among some of the best heat races ever at the legendary oval. The winner of the United Trailers heat race was Jay Rohrback of Belleville. It is especially gratifying for Rohrback who crashed hard in practice and had to replace the front axle on the car. The Dowker Engines heat went to Tom Fedewa in a brilliant pass of Troy Underwood on the last lap and the Wolverine Steel heat went to Kevin Newton who started sixth and passed all cars in front of him in one lap and cruised to the victory.

The B-Main was scratched as Gary Howe owner of the fine facility allowed all 23 cars to start the 30 lap main event. It was the last race of the evening and what an incredible show it was. The gigantic crowd saluted the AVSS three wide salute and then it was time for Kevin Feeney and Johnboy Hotchkiss to lead the field to the green. The race started with Hotchkiss taking the lead and Kevin Feeney following. The yellow was waved on lap four for the spinning Hank Lower who stopped on the front stretch. The race was quickly restarted and Hotchkiss continued to lead. A major accident happened on lap seven when Mike Astrauskas slowed and went off the track. As this happened Marvin Carmen lost a wheel on the back stretch and Lay cut a tire and hit the back stretch wall hard with the back of his car doing severe damage. The Dennis Venia car also suffered a flat and the red flag was thrown to help with clean up and let the teams refuel.

When racing restarted it was a 23-lap battle to see if Hotchkiss could capture his first ever AVSS victory. He continued to lead with Dorman Snyder and Feeney chasing him. The man with the plan was Fedewa who was moving up from his fourth starting position. The Leslie MI driver passed for second on lap 11 and was quickly closing on Hotchkiss. The pass for the lead was made in traffic as Hotchkiss had some trouble with the lapped cars and Tom Fedewa was able to make the move on lap 18. This was all she wrote, as Fedewa was able to pull away and Hotchkiss had an incredible battle on his hands with Feeney for second. He did hold on to the runner-up position.

The driver of the Katz Well Drilling 20 machine was very excited in Kalamazoo victory lane as he thanked his great car owner Mike Katz and all the hard working crew. This moved Fedewa into the point’s lead with his second win in the first four races of the 2003 season. The Hamilton Trucking Fast Time award went to Brian Lay and the Suspension Spring Specialists driver of the race was Hotchkiss. The Sweet Manufacturing Sweet Move of the race goes to Jay Rohrback and his crew for their hard work in fixing the car and then winning the United Trailer’s heat race.

The Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper Super Sprints would like to thank the hard working staff at Kalamazoo and remind everyone that the fastest 3/8 mile oval in the country will once again host the AVSS on Saturday August 9th. The AVSS will next return to action on Saturday May 31 at Baer Field Speedway in Fort Wayne IN. This will be the second of four appearances at the Tom Isch promoted track. The pit gates at Fort Wayne open at 2, with hot laps at 3, qualifying at 5 and racing at 7. The AVSS website is for more information.


Qualifying- 1. 45 Brian Lay 10.928 NTR! 2. 20 Tom Fedewa 10.929 3. 99 Kevin Newton 11.061 4. 44j Dorman Snyder 11.175 5. JB Johnboy Hotchkiss 11.210 6. 26 Jeff Bloom 11.265 7. 40 Tim Cox 11.266 8. 98 Kevin Feeney 11.272 9. 42 Gary Fedewa 11.334 10. 55 Jason Blonde 11.403 11. 70 Dennis Craft 11.407 12. 11 Chris Hayes 11.446 13. 33 Jay Rohrback 11.463 14. 71 Curt Shumaker 11.479 15. 35 Ryan Katz 11.503 16. 27 Rick Toncray 11.609 17. 4 Troy Underwood 11.619 18. 69 Chris Hettinger 11.621 19. 61 Marv Carmen 11.626 20. 37 Hank Lower 11.644 21. 11 Dennis Venia 11.928 22. 3A Mike Astrauskas 12.051 23. 66 Doug Stepke 12.234

United Trailers Heat- 1. Rohrback 2. Cox 3. Blonde 4. Lay 5. Toncray 6. Carmen 7. Snyder 8. Astrauskas

Dowker Engines Heat- 1. T.Fedewa 2. Underwood 3. Craft 4. Feeney 5. Hotchkiss 6. Shumaker 7. Stepke 8. Lower

Wolverine Steel Heat- 1. Newton 2. Katz 3. G.Fedewa 4. Bloom 5. Hayes 6. Hettinger 7. Venia

Feature- 1. T.Fedewa 2. Hotchkiss 3. Feeney 4. Bloom 5. Blonde 6. Snyder 7. Newton 8. G.Fedewa 9. Katz 10. Craft 11. Hayes 12. Cox 13. Underwood 14. Hettinger 15. Stepke 16. Venia 17. Toncray 18. Rohrback 19. Shumaker 20. Lower 21. Lay 22. Carmen 23. Astrauskas