Story By: RACE OF CHAMPIONS – WILLIAMSON, NY – Patrick Emerling of Orchard Park, N.Y., made a dramatic move in traffic to get past Andy Jankowiak of Buffalo, N.Y., to take the lead and go on and win the Tribute to Don Pratt ‘62’ at Spencer Speedway presented by Wilbert’s U Pull-It in Williamson, N.Y., which began the tracks 65th consecutive season of competition.
The win was the 15th of Emerling’s Race of Champions career and his third Series victory at Spencer. He’s just 1 win away from tying his crew chief, Jan Leaty, for 4th on the all-time win list.
“We had a good night tonight,” stated Emerling in victory lane. “Things went our way. We raced Andy (Jankowiak) really hard and I knew Eric (Beers) and Mike (Leaty) my teammate were coming behind me. It’s great to pay tribute to another great Modified competitor in Don Pratt and thank you to Curt Tooley for working extra hard to raise additional lap money.”
Jankowiak ended up in the turn four wall on a restart, before Eric Beers of Northampton, Pa., gave Emerling a challenge to the finish.
Beers finished second with Mike Leaty of Williamson, N.Y., recovering from an early race spin to finish third.
Daren Scherer of Binghamton, N.Y., finished fourth and Daryl Lewis, Jr., of Ontario, N.Y., rounded out the top-five.
Chuck Hossfeld of Ransomville, N.Y., posted the Speed51.com “Top of the Board” overall fast time in group time trials with a lap of 18.893 seconds with an average speed of 95.273 mph.
Leaty; Tommy Catalano of Ontario, N.Y., and Hossfeld won the qualifying races.
Tom Barron of Ontario, N.Y., scored the win in the Race of Champions Super Stock opener. Barron topped Tommy Krawczyk of West Seneca, N.Y., who finished second and Zack Willis of Williamson, N.Y., who finished third.
Dave Milbrand of Clarence, N.Y., won the Wilbert’s U Pull-It Four Cylinder division race. Milbrand topped Ryan Brown of Ontario, N.Y., (second) and Allison Montgomery of Ontario, N.Y. (third).