Crawford Captures First SOS Feature Win

Bill Oldroyd

Ohsweken Speedway – July 30, 2004

A solid field of twenty-six sprinters was on hand to do battle under threatening skies but that didn’t dampen the emotions in the pits after the feature.  Bob Crawford of Sutton became the sixth different winner in nine races as the Southern Ontario Sprints returned to Ohsweken Speedway Friday, July 30th.  Earlier in the evening, Crawford had dominated his heat race and then he capped off the night by winning his first feature race with the SOS.  The ever-popular Crawford had a grin from ear-to-ear after the race as he accepted congratulations from his fellow competitors and their crews.  Crawford joined the Southern Ontario Sprints last season after a lengthy career with the Can-Am Midgets.

Dick Mahoney from Newmarket lead the field to the green but before the first lap was completed, a red flag halted the field.  Stephanie Christiano of Tonawanda, NY was involved in a crash in turn two that saw her sprinter go through the inside wall.  Fortunately, Christiano’s only injury was a minor cut and bump to her left knee but her sprinter suffered major damage.  The race was stopped for several minutes while track officials repaired the damaged wall however, once the race was restarted, it would run from green to checkered with no cautions.

A light sprinkle of rain began to fall as the field was being pushed off for a complete restart.  At the drop of the green Dick Mahoney grabbed the lead.  Jack Pillon of Belle River started the feature in forth but quickly moved up into second, followed by Daryl Turford of Stratford in third and Crawford in forth.

Dick Mahoney held the lead for the first five circuits but on lap six, Crawford took over the point position with a pass coming out of turn two.  Pillon was still in third with Warren Mahoney of Lefroy now in forth and John Riegling from Chatham in fifth.

At the halfway point, Crawford found himself with a comfortable lead as the two Mahoney’s, Pillon and Riegling were battling hard for positions two through five.  Cody Geldart from Mossley was now up to sixth with SOS point’s leader, Glenn Styres of Ohsweken a close seventh.  The 1999 SOS Champion, Garry Evans from London made his first appearance of the season and at mid-race was up to eighth place from his twenty-first starting position.  Rounding out the top ten were Adam West of Ridgetown and Turford.

As the race wound down, Geldart was on a mission.  With two laps remaining, the battle for second was intense as Geldart and both Mahoney’s were all determined to take the position.  At one point they ran three wide through turns one and two with Geldart the eventual winner of the battle.  However the night belonged to Crawford as he negotiated lapped traffic most of the race to take the victory.  Geldart would come home second followed by Warren Mahoney, Dick Mahoney and West.

Rookie Pillon had his best night of the season with a career best sixth place in the feature to go with his first ever heat race win earlier in the night.  Styres would finish in seventh and see his points lead now down to only five points over Geldart.  Riegling held on for an eighth place finish, followed by Kyle Patrick of Tilbury and Les MacMillian from Belmont.  The hard charger of the night was Curt Sherwood from Sanborn, NY who started the feature at the tail of the field and finished in eleventh place.

Heat race wins on this night would go to Styres, Crawford and Pillon.  Due to the threatening weather and attrition, the “B-main” and Dash for Cash were cancelled.

Next up the series was scheduled to go to Brighton Speedway July 31st to close out the weekend, however, this race has been cancelled due to the large amount of rain in the area.  The series will now take a week off while several SOS drivers head west to Knoxville, Iowa to compete in the “Brodix Tournament of Champions” race.  The series will then make a return visit to Ohsweken on August 13th.

Signet Tool Heat
1. #0 – Glenn Styres, Ohsweken, ON; 2. #17 – Gary Evans, Thorndale, ON; 3. #77 – Les MacMillan, Belmont, ON; 4. #99 – Al Gaukel, Cambridge, ON; 5. #2 – Vinnie Christiano Jr., Tonawanda, NY; 6. #26 – John Watson, St. Thomas, ON; 7. #18 – Stephanie Christiano, Tonawanda, NY

Wiseco Heat
1. #10 – Bob Crawford, Sutton, ON; 2. #6 – Cody Geldart, Mossley, ON; 3. #79 – Dick Mahoney, Newmarket, ON; 4. #25 – Warren Mahoney, Lefroy, ON; 5. #33 – Jamie Collard, Princeton, ON; 6. #30 – Adam West, Ridgetown, ON; 7. #12 – Willy Northcott, London, ON; 8. #75 – Jim Sweers, Westover, ON; 9. #31 – Curt Sherwood, Sanborn, NY

Leaf Racewear Heat
1. #18j – Jack Pillon, Belle River, ON; 2. #1a – John Riegling, Chatham, ON; 3. #93 – Daryl Turford, Stratford, ON; 4. #27 – Paul Ballantyne, Brantford, ON; 5. #17m – Charlie McCann, London, ON; 6. #32 – Mark Schulz, Newfane, NY

Pennzoil Feature
1. #10 – Bob Crawford; 2. #6 – Cody Geldart; 3. #25 – Warren Mahoney; 4. #79 – Dick Mahoney; 5. #30 – Adam West; 6. #18j – Jack Pillon; 7. #0 – Glenn Styres; 8. #1a – John Riegling; 9. #33k – Kyle Patrick; 10. #77 – Les MacMillan; 11. #31 – Curt Sherwood; 12. #17 – Gary Evans; 13. #93 – Daryl Turford; 14. #2 – Vinnie Christiano Jr.; 15. #12 – Willy Northcott; 16. #17m – Charlie McCann; 17. #33 – Jamie Collard; 18. #69 – Garry Evans, London, ON; 19. #27 – Paul Ballantyne; 20. #71 – Craig Downing, Burlington. ON; 21. #75 – Jim Sweers; 22. #26 – John Watson; 23. #18 – Stephanie Christiano

DNS: #5 – Keith Dempster, Alton, ON; #32 – Mark Schulz; #99 – Al Gaukel


1st #19j Rob Ledingham
2nd #20 Jay Mallory
3rd #14 Greg Wilson
4th #56 Dereck Lemyre
5th #7 Steve Ruddy
6th #13 Dennis Giannola
7th #0x Bernard Nieburg
8th #21 Johm Burbidge Sr.
9th #94 Mark Dixon
10th #8c Wayne Conn
11th #9j Tim Zack
12th #11Z Allan Blanchard
13th #44 Lee Mallory
14th #1j Joe Meisel
15th #31 John Burbridge
16th #20k Rick St. Pierre
17th #01 Mike Kruchka

1st #21 Blake Bombery Sr.
2nd #11 Michelle Johnson
3rd #5 Jeff Burke
4th 24A A.J.Lewis
5th #90 David Brewster
6th #76 Travis Bravin
7th #20 Lindsey Riley
8th #3 Brad Bacher
9th #12 Brad Herron
10th #1 Mike Cripps
11th #32 Dave Vogt
12th #47 Gordon Farnsworth
13th #40 Terry Osmond
14th #14 Amanda Stoner
15th #1J Jason Fontaine NS

1st #18 Team #18  R. Dinning
5th #9 Glen Lienen
7th #69e Dan Erskine
8th #265 MIKE EVERS
11th #56 Kevin Slater
12th #13 TED HALLETT
13th #83 Stan Farmer
14th #27eh Dan stewart
15th #23 Andrew & Abel Castelein
16th #mt50 SHARI TURNER
17th #222 DAVE MAGRIN
18th #89 Steve Miller
20th #55 Kevin Thorne
21st #191 Gord Bates
22nd #79 Dan Miller

1st #mt50 SHARI TURNER
2nd #89 Steve Miller
3rd #69e Dan Erskine
4th #55 Kevin Thorne
5th #27eh Dan stewart
7th #5 Dave/Rick Robinson NF