September 26, 2016
(Milgrove, ON) – Last Saturday night, the Lucas Oil Sportsman Cup 2016 championship season wrapped up with the final event, rained out from the week prior at Flamboro Speedway. It was the third visit of the season to the Hamilton-area’s 1/3rd-mile Asphalt Arena, with Brandt Graham (#14) of Bowmanville, entering the night with a 17-point advantage in the standings over Josh Wood (#66) of London, and 18 markers over ‘The Flying Farmer’ Kevin Gallant (#51) of Vanessa. Gallant, and Mike ‘Hollywood’ Hrynuik (#15) of Essex, were previous winners at the track this season.
Lucas Oil qualifying was the first order of the night, and all eyes were on the track record lap of 16.281 seconds, which Hrynuik had set on May 28th. Two of the first three qualifiers were within 2/10ths of a second of the record lap, but it was 73-year old Bob Merrifield (#43) of Belle River, who was the first to crack the barrier, with a time of 16.203 seconds.
The time stood through a number of runs, but as the session was coming to a close Chad McGlynn (#18) of Kitchener, stopped the clock with a lap of 16.199 seconds.
After losing his record about 10 minutes prior, Hrynuik hit the track as the final qualifier, and re-claimed the track record, turning the oval at a time of 16.005 seconds, shuffling McGlynn to second, and Merrifield to third. Alvin ‘The Bandit’ McNicol (#77) of Exeter, and Graham, rounded out the top-five with laps of 16.280 seconds, and 16.321 seconds. All but one of the cars were in the 16 second range in the tightly bunched field.
The Lucas Oil ‘Fast Five’ draw was held on the front stretch, as five lucky fans were paired up with the quickest qualifiers, and then after signing some autographs, drew their starting positions for the Lucas Oil 100 lap feature event.
McGlynn drew the pole with Graham alongside him. McNicol and Hrynuik would make up row two, with Merrifield rolling off fifth.
When the green dropped for the main event, the Lucas Oil 100, McGlynn paced the field with Hrynuik and McNicol in tow. Gallant was slicing through the field after starting ninth and by lap 20 had moved to third. Hrynuik poked his nose out front for one lap on a restart, but wasn’t able to complete the pass as him and Gallant exchanged second spot a few times, but on a lap 53 restart Hrynuik was able to take the lead at the stripe and a yellow would give him control of the field on the next restart. The yellow was for a big wreck in turns one and two as Gallant was turned around in front of the entire field. Donny Beattie (#40) of Beaverton, and Tim ‘The Intimidator’ Tolton (#3) of Guelph were also involved in the wreck, with Tolton’s night being finished.
On the next restart, the entire field was stacked up coming out of turn two, as a number of cars were piled up together at the end of the backstretch when the smoke cleared, including Beattie and Kevin Allen (#54) of Drumbo.
When the field went green again, the order was Hrynuik, McGlynn, Wood, Graham, and Gallant. Graham moved to third, and the front trio pulled away from the pack, content to settle it amongst themselves. As the laps started to wind down, McGlynn was able to put heat on Hrynuik, and finally 12 laps to go he made the pass for the win. For McGlynn it was the second win of his career on the tour, and the first since Capital City Speedway in Ottawa in 2014, with his only other previous feature win coming back in 1999 during a Delaware Speedway weekly show.
McGlynn spoke about his evening, and running down Hrynuik for the win, “It was a great night for us, and I had a blast racing with Mike. We’ve done this together for a long time, and we didn’t get into each other too much, it was just great racing. My car came to me late in the race, and I was just able to get past him at the end. We’ve had a great season, and this is an awesome way to close it out. We had a lot of other good runs where we had a shot at winning, but tonight we put it all together.”
Hrynuik talked about his runner-up finish, saying, “We had a great car all night. We reset the track record tonight, and had a great battle with Chad. I think we had some contact during the night that knocked the front end out a bit, and that might have slowed us down at the end. I used up a lot of the car racing Chad for the lead on the outside, and at the end of the race, he might have had a little more car then us. We won two races on the season, and if we didn’t miss those events in the middle of the year, I think we would’ve been in the championship hunt.”
With his third-place finish, Graham captured the championship in just his second year of competition. He talked about his title clinching run, “I saved the car early on, and once there were some cars that had dropped out, and we were safe in the points, we thought we had a shot at winning. We weren’t able to win, but it was another solid top-three finish, and completed a tremendous season. I had an idea after we won at the end of last season that might have a shot at the title this year. We won three races in a row in the middle of the year, and were able to improve our qualifying efforts. I have to thank my parents so much for taking me out of a Mini-Stock, and putting me in one of these full-size stock cars a couple of years ago, and it’s awesome to be a champion on a division as competitive as this. Years ago, I said I wanted to win a championship, and I did.”
Allen finished fourth, and Beattie would up fifth.
|Final Results – 1. McGlynn, 2.Hrynuik 3. Graham, 4. Allen, 5. Beattie.|
Final Lucas Oil Sportsman Cup – Championship Points Standings (after 7 of 7 events) – 1. Brandt Graham (681 points), 2. Josh Wood (659), 2. Chad McGlynn (655), 4. Kevin Gallant (652), 5. Alvin McNicol (627).
Final Qualifying Standings (after 7 of 7 events) – 1. McGlynn (51 points), 2. Hrynuik (48), 3. Graham (47), 4. Tim/Bobby Tolton (38), 5. (tie) Wood and McNicol (34).
For more information on the Lucas Oil Sportsman Cup Series, Lucas Oil, or Flamboro Speedway, please visit www.lucasoilsportsmancup.com,
www.lucasoil.ca, www.flamborospeedway.ca, or contact Series Director Dave Didero at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Release and photo by Jamie Maudsley.
|Race #7||“Lucas Oil 100”|
|Flamboro Speedway – Sept. 24, 2016||Track record – 16.281|
|Lap Leaders – 18 (1-18), 15 (19), 18 (20-53), 15 (53-82), 18 (83-100)|
|Hard Charger – #48 Doug Cathcart (7 positions)||Final Standings|
|Fast Time # 15 Mike Hrynuik – 16.005 (new track record)||1||14||Brandt Graham||681|
|Sept. 24th Time Trials||3||18||Chad McGlynn||655|
|1||15||Mike Hryniuk||16.005||4||51||Kevin Gallant||652|
|2||18||Chad McGlynn||16.199||5||77||Alvin McNicol||627|
|3||43||Bob Merrifield||16.203||6||40||Don Beattie||625|
|4||77||Alvin McNicol||16.280||7||88||Scott Laporte||624|
|5||14||Brandt Graham||16.321||8||3||Tim/Bobby Tolton||618|
|6||54||Kevin Allen||16.384||9||43||Bob Merrifield||614|
|7||24||Brennan Didero||16.390||10||8||Adam Martin||603|
|8||40||Don Beattie||16.390||11||48||Doug Cathcart||590|
|9||51||Kevin Gallant||16.402||12||54||Kevin Allen||562|
|10||3||Tim Tolton||16.427||13||15||Mike Hryniuk||473|
|11||88||Scott Laporte||16.482||14||85||Mike Nelson||442|
|12||66||Josh Wood||16.611||15||12||Mark Patrick||84|
|13||8||Adam Martin||16.733||16||24||Brennan Didero||82|
|15||85||Mike Nelson||16.921||Time Trial Standings|
|2016 Schedule||2||15||Mike Hrynuik||48|
|1||May 14||Flamboro Speedway (Mike Hrynuik)||3||14||Brandt Graham||47|
|2||May 28||Flamboro Speedway (Kevin Gallant)||4||3||Tim/Bobby Tolton||38|
|3||June 25||Sauble Speedway (B. Graham & C. McGlynn)||5||66||Josh Wood||34|
|4||July 16||Sauble Speedway (Brandt Graham)||6||77||Alvin McNicol||34|
|5||Aug. 06||Peterborough Speedway (Brandt Graham)||7||43||Bob Merrifield||28|
|6||Aug. 27||Full Throttle Speedway (Mike Hrynuik)||8||51||Kevin Gallant||25|
|7||Sept. 24||Flamboro Speedway (Chad McGlynn)||9||40||Don Beattie||24|
|Flamboro new track record – 16.005||11||48||Doug Cathcart||20|