4th of July Celebration Goes to Gary Fedewa


By Mike Strevel

BIRCH RUN, Mich. (July 3, 2003) –
The Dixie Motor Speedway in Birch Run MI hosted the return of the Auto Value/Bumper to Bumper Super Sprint Series Thursday evening. This was the first time in three years the winged warriors returned to the Mike and Krista Kern owned track. The 25 AVSS stars all smiled when they saw the great improvements to the facility. A new state of the art lighting system and a brand new 4/10-mile highbanked oval awaited the teams. The happiest driver at Dixie Thursday night was three-time AVSS national champion Gary Fedewa of Holt MI, who lead all 30 laps in taking his first AVSS feature of the season.

The extremely hot and humid day started with 25 teams attempting to be the fastest driver in the history of this new oval. The winner of Hamilton Trucking qualifications was current AVSS point leader Tom Fedewa of Leslie MI who set the pace at an amazing 13.026. The fastest previous best laps were in a super late model car at 14.806. It was Kevin Newton second at 13.029 and Jeff Bloom third at 13.066.

The three heat races were really eight lap test sessions as the drivers tried to figure out the new configuration of the Dixie Speedway. The three racers taking the heats were Chris Hayes taking the United Trailers heat race, Tim Cox winning the Dowker Engines heat and Dorman Snyder picking up the Wolverine Steel heat. The B-Main went to Tim Angello over Curt Shumaker, Bill Tyler, Troy Underwood and Dennis Craft. The Lane Automotive/Aeroquip provisional was awarded to Doug Stepke. This set the 30-lap feature for 21 stars and cars for the first ever feature on the new and improved oval.

The inversion rolled for the feature by Tom Fedewa was six, so this placed Gary Fedewa on the pole and Jason Blonde to his outside. The standing room only crowd roared its approval at the AVSS three wide salute to the fans and then it was time for some fireworks on the track. The feature started with G.Fedewa leading the field with Blonde in pursuit. The sixth starting T.Fedewa was third in the first three laps and then the first of two red flags was thrown. The first was for the slow roll over of Chris Hayes in turn two. The Rockford MI driver got out of shape going down the front stretch and made contact with another car and tipped over in the second turn. The driver was fine, but the team will have some work to get ready for Salem this next week. The race restarted and on the next lap Kevin Newton climbed Jeff Bloom’s rear tire and flew into the turn four wall. The Stickney Brothers owned machine was virtually destroyed, but the good news was he climbed quickly from the car. The red was thrown for the Newton wreck and then it was time for some great action on the track. The feature restarted and on the next lap T.Fedewa was able to make his move into second and then it would be a 25-lap battle between father and son to see who would end up in victory lane. There were two quick cautions, one on lap 15 and one on lap 24 to slow things down for a couple of minutes. The current point leader T.Fedewa tried several times to get along side of his Dad, but was not able to complete the pass. The first win for the legendary driver since last August at Kalamazoo made the driver very happy in victory lane. The driver of the T&T Promotions car thanked all of his great crew, Annie Rae Chevrolet, McClures Pub and Dowker Engines. The entire family celebrated on the track and as the lights went down it was time for the tracks incredible fireworks show. The top ten finishers were G.Fedewa, T.Fedewa, Blonde, Bloom, Brian Lay, Cox, Kevin Feeney, Johnboy Hotchkiss, Jimmy McCune and Doug Stepke.

The AVSS would like to thanks Mike and Krista Kern for their incredible job in improving the track and all of their staff. The Auto Value/ Bumper to Bumper Super Sprints would also like to thank all the Auto Value and Bumper to Bumper representatives that were there to enjoy the races. The AVSS returns to action Saturday night July 12 at the Salem Speedway in Salem IN for what is quickly becoming a classic among the AVSS races of the year. All the action begins with pit gates opening at 1, hot laps at 3:30, qualifying at 5:30 and racing at 7 CST. The official website of the vas is www.supersprints.com for more information.

RESULTS DIXIE MOTOR SPEEDWAY 7-3-2003

Qualifying- 1. 20 Tom Fedewa 13.026(NTR) 2. 99 Kevin Newton 13.029 3. 26 Jeff Bloom 13.066 4. 45 Brian Lay 13.174 5. 55 Jason blonde 13.206 6. 42 Gary Fedewa 13.291 7. 40 Tim Cox 13.305 8. 98 Kevin Feeney 13.316 9. 71 Curt Shumaker 13.356 10. JB Johnboy Hotchkiss 13.398 11. 2 Tim Angello 13.407 12. 61 Jimmy McCune 13.419 13. 44j Bill Jacoby 13.420 14. 11 Chris Hayes 13.461 15. 35 Ryan Katz 13.467 16. 66 Doug Stepke 13.467 17. 37 Hank Lower 13.478 18. 69 Dorman Snyder 13.537 19. 33 Bill Tyler 13.547 20. 4 Troy Underwood 13.626 21. 92 George Gustafson 13.718 22. 8 Ryan Davis 13.789 23. 70 Dennis Craft 13.804 24. 27 Rick Toncray 13.811 25. 17 Roger Anderson 14.372

Heat results- 1. Hayes 2. Feeney 3. Newton 4. Blonde 5. Lower 6. Craft 7. Underwood 8. Angello

Heat 2- 1. Cox 2. T.Fedewa 3. Jacoby 4. Hotchkiss 5. Lay 6. Tyler 7. Davis 8. Stepke 9. Anderson

Heat 3- 1. Snyder 2. Katz 3. McCune 4. Bloom 5. G.Fedewa 6. Shumaker 7. Toncray 8. Gustafson

B-Main- 1. Angello 2. Shumaker 3. Tyler 4. Underwood 5. Craft 6. Stepke 7. Toncray 8. Gustafson 9. Davis 10. Anderson

A-Main- 1. G. Fedewa 2. T.Fedewa 3. Blonde 4. Bloom 5. Lay 6. Cox 7. Feeney 8. Hotchkiss 9. McCune 10. Stepke 11. Underwood 12. Lower 13. Shumaker 14. Katz 15. Angello 16. Jacoby 17. Craft 18. Tyler 19. Snyder 20. Newton 21. Hayes