BRIDGEPORT HONORS 2021 TRACK CHAMPIONS

Bridgeport, NJ – For the first time since taking over the helm of the Bridgeport Motorsports Park, Doug and Brittany Rose hosted the Awards Banquet at the Bridgeport Fire Hall on Saturday night. Last year’s event was derailed due to the concerns over Covid-19 but this year’s event went off without a hitch in front of a full house of drivers and owners. This year’s event was catered by Ellery’s Grill and Pub of Middlesex, NJ.

Rose presented every driver from both the 4/10th mile track and the Spirit Auto Center Speedway with their awards during the course of the evening. Rose thanked the competitors for their support throughout the season and told them how much he appreciated the support that they gave to Bridgeport. Rose made sure to include all drivers and owners, not just the top ten or so in each division. “Every one of them (competitors) is important, whether they finish in the top ten or not,” Rose explained. “Each and every one is vital to our racing program.”

Rose also recognized the Bridgeport employees and staff and revealed the new shirts that will be provided for the coming season. “Each one performs a vital job,” Rose continued.

Ryan Godown and his R&M Motorsports were center stage as their 2021 Bridgeport Speedway Foley Cat Modified championship was celebrated. Godown’s performance throughout the season was one of winning and consistency. Godown raced to nine victories on the 4/10th mile surface and placed in the top five eighteen times during the twenty-four race season.

As has been the case following every feature win, Godown praised his race team and his sponsors who have supported him throughout his career. Some of these sponsors have been with Godown throughout his career including Michael Strober of Strober-Wright Roofing who has supported Godown’s racing for the past eighteen years. Godown had Strober join him center stage when he accepted his championship trophy and point fund moneys. ($10,000)

Sponsors on the No. 26 are Camp Out, Ellery’s Grill and Pub, Izzy’s Trucking, Creston Hydraulics, TMI Trucking, Montrose Mouldings, R&M Motorsports and Strober-Wright Roofing plus many product sponsors also keep the No. 26 on track week in and week out. Crew members worked at home in the garage as well as at the track, led by Sam Godown as crew chief. Working on the No. 26 crew are Mike Carlucci, Ryan Godown, Jr., Ron Bennitez, Roger Cox, Dan Fleming, Bruce Johnson, Matt Ellery, John Ellery (trustee), Don Miller, Chelsea Miller and Savannah. Godown always remembers his mom and dad whenever the opportunity arises.

Following the end of the 2020 season, Godown and his crew were looking to improve on the past season’s performance. After exploring some options with other teams, Godown, his brother, Sam and his best friend, Mike Carlucci made the decision to form their own team for the coming season and that’s how R&M Motorsports came to be. They then approached their sponsors who jumped on board for the 2021 season.

Putting the 2020 season behind them, work was begun on the new team. Their goal was to concentrate their efforts on their Saturday night car. When that task was accomplished, then and only then would they think about doing any traveling.

The No. 26 was fast out of the box but the first three races of the season fell short of a feature win as Godown finished third and then second in the next two races. On May 15th, the R&M Motorsports No. 26 went to the Weaknecht Archery Victory Lane for the first time in 2021. Three days later, they returned to win a mid-week show. They were on their way.

“I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for them,” Godown said, indicating his sponsors and crew members. “My job is easy. I just have to drive the car. It’s because of them that I am here!”

Alex Yankowski finished second to Godown in the final point standings after collecting a pair of wins, fifteen top fives and twenty top tens. For the second year in a row, Yankowski finished second in points ($5,000) at the Kingdom of speed.

Dominick Buffalino was ranked third in points in his first season behind the wheel of the potent Hyneman No. 126. Buffalino won three times during the 2021 season – one mid-week show, one point contest and the second annual Danny Serrano 100 for the biggest win of his career to date.

Joseph Watson had one win this season and finished fourth in points ahead of Billy Osmun III in fifth.

Ryan Krachun, Matt Stangle, Sam Martz, Sr., Billy Pauch, Sr. were sixth through ninth in the standings, each with a single feature win. Neal Williams completed the top ten in the South Jersey Overhead Door No. 0.

Sammy Martz, Jr. carried on with the family tradition and captured the South Jersey Overhead Door 602 Crate Sportsman title for 2021. Martz was the 2018 DA’S Auto Body & Repair Rookie Champion on the 5/8th mile track and now just three years later, was being crowned as the Crate Sportsman Champion. After very limited experience on the new Bridgeport surface, Martz started the season off with a win in the opener and then won five more times before the end of the season. The third generation driver gained a lot of confidence by winning the first race of the season. Martz collected fifteen top five finishes and twenty top tens in twenty-four events.

Steve Kemery raced to seven wins and finished second in points followed by Matt Ellery, Tom Sherby and Howie Finch. It was the first season of competition for Ellery who earned a win in one of the Underdog 20 races at the end of the season. Ryan Godown, Jr. finished sixth in points followed by Travis Hill, Rookie Champion, Ethan Bill, Jim Dallett and Ryan Higgs. It was also Dallett’s first year in a 602 Crate Sportsman.

After a very challenging 2021 season, Tom Wills, Jr. claimed his third Street Stock point championship with five feature wins.

Wills spoke about the how the Street Stock competitors came to his aid whenever mechanical issues arose at the track. ” I just hope that I can repay all the kindness that I was shown,” the champion stated.

Jeff Dirkes finished second with four wins, followed by Mike Hughes with one win, Jeramy Doerr and Nick Sandone III. John Parker, Ken Moren, Gary Klimeczak, TJ Henry and Rich Stinson rounded out the top ten.

Ethan Bill raced to the 2021 DA’s Auto Body & Repair Rookie Championship, winning all but two of the Rookie feature events. He finished second in the other two races won by Bryce Higgs and Shane Kassekert. It was a big season for the “Super Rookie” who also graduated from high school during the 2021 season.

Several competitors were honored with special awards, presented by Doug Rose. Jim Gallagher was recognized as the Modified Rookie of the Year as well as Billy Osmun, III whose consistent top ten performances gained him recognition for his 2021 efforts. Billy Chester and Pete Serra were honored for their weekly support and achievements in 602 Crate Sportsman competition. Nick Sandone’s NS3 Street Stock team was honored for their weekly support of both their driver and the speedway in general. This team also raised thousands of dollars in tornado relief for areas surrounding the Bridgeport Speedway that were devastated by summer storms. Doug Rose honored John Ellery for his support throughout the season.

Track champions Godown, Martz, Jr. and Wills, Jr. were presented with beautiful red racing suits from the Bridgeport Speedway.

Most Popular Driver Awards were presented to the winners from the 2020 and 2021 seasons. Fans voted via ballots found in the official Bridgeport Speedway program, the Bridgeport Bullet. For the 2020 season, the winners were Alex Yankowski (Modifieds), Scott Hulmes (602), Nick Sandone (Street Stocks), Gary Bozowski (600 Micros), Alex Swift (270) and Amanda Angstadt (Slingshots). The 2021 winners were Ryan Krachun (Modifieds), Jonathan John (270) and PJ Bozowski (Slingshots). Scott Hulmes, Nick Sandone and Gary Bozowski were repeat winners in 2021.

Connor Gross was crowned as the 2021 Hyper Racing/EVO Injection 600 champion in his first full year of competition on the Spirit Auto Center quarter mile. Gross won on two occasions and collected an impressive eleven top fives and fourteen top tens in fourteen events. All this on top of missing the first two races of the season.

Steve Bracall finished second to Gross with two wins followed by Frank Holmes, Eddie Barber, III and Robert Pierce. Rich Deck, PJ Williams, Steven Snyder, Chris Fenimore and Brandon Pavel rounded out the top ten in a division that saw one hundred and eighty different drivers throughout the 2021 season.

Alex Swift celebrated his third 270 Micro Sprint Championship with car owner, John and Amanda Blanda. The driver and owner came together late in the 2017 season and then won the 270 championship in 2018 (tied with Nick Skias), 2019 and now again in 2021 after a second place finish last season.

Nick Skias finished second followed by Nick Walton, Tommy Rinck, and John Wagner, Jr. Jimmy Wagner, Dom Pomponi, Lee Nardelli, Tom Landwher and Tyler Grau completed the top ten in points.

Amanda Angstadt raced to her first Spirit title in the All Star Slingshot division with four wins during the 2021 season along with eight second place runs. All of the champion’s finishes were in the top five, including one race where an engine was provided by the team of Ryan Davey after Angstadt had mechanical issues.

Michael Beckett finished second in points with three feature wins followed by Ryan Davey with one win, rookie PJ Bozowski and Tim Franks.

In Poker Series competition on the quarter mile, Colin White was the Poker Series Champion for the Hyper 600/EVO Injection 600s. Alex Swift won the title in the 270 micro sprints with Brett Bieber crowned as the champion in the All Star Slingshots. Poker Series titles are determined based upon the cards that a driver earns with his top thirteen finish in each event.

2020 Champion, Steve Kemery finished second to Martz in points with seven wins during the 2021 season. Matt Ellery finished third in points in what was his first season of competition in the 602 Crate Sportsman. Ellery earned a win in an Underdog 20 race in the final weeks of the season. Tom Sherby and Howie Finch rounded out the top five with consistent finishes throughout the season.

Mutli-time feature winner, Ryan Godown, Jr. finished sixth in points followed by Travis Hill, Rookie Champion, Ethan Bill, another first year driver, Jim Dallett and Ryan Higgs.

Tom Wills, Jr. earned his third Bridgeport Street Stock championship in what proved to be a very tough season for the father and son team. They collected five wins during the 2021 season in addition to six top fives.

Wills spoke about the relationships made among the Street Stock competitors. When the Wills No. 856 lost an engine, they thought their season was over but the Beaumont family provided a power plant. “Any time we had problems at the track,” Wills explained, “other competitors were right there to offer whatever we needed.” Ken Moren even gave up the seat in his No. 73 for Wills to compete in a feature event. “I just hope that I can repay all the kindness that we were shown,” Wills added.

Jeff Dirkes finished second in points with four wins followed by Mike Hughes with one win, Jeramy Doerr and Nick Sandone III. John Parker, Ken Moren, Gary Klimeczak, TJ Henry and Rich Stinson rounded out the top ten in Street Stock points. Henry and Stinson were both multi-time feature winners.

Ethan Bill earned a nickname along with the championship title in the 2021 DA’s Auto Body & Repair Rookie Championship, winning all but two of the Rookie feature events. “Super Rookie” Bill had runner-up finishes in the other two races won by Bryce Higgs and Shane Kassekert. In addition to finishing eighth in the 602 Crate Sportsman points, winning the Rookie Championship, the young driver also celebrated his high school graduation during the season.

Several competitors were honored with special awards, presented by Doug Rose. Jim Gallagher was recognized as the Modified Rookie of the Year as well as Billy Osmun, III whose consistent top ten performances gained him recognition for his 2021 efforts. Billy Chester and Pete Serra were honored for their weekly support and achievements in 602 Crate Sportsman competition. Nick Sandone’s NS3 Street Stock team was honored for their weekly support of both their driver and the speedway in general. This team also raised thousands of dollars in tornado relief for areas surrounding the Bridgeport Speedway that were devastated by summer storms. Doug Rose honored John Ellery for his support throughout the season as well as for his wonderful service, preparing and serving the banquet meal.

Doug Rose had an additional surprise for 4/10th track champions as they were presented with Bridgeport Speedway racing suits, beautifully made by Velocita.

Race fans selected the Most Popular drivers on both the 4/10th mile and quarter mile tracks by submitting ballots found in the official Bridgeport Speedway program, the Bridgeport Bullet. For the 2020 season, the winners were Alex Yankowski (Modifieds), Scott Hulmes (602), Nick Sandone (Street Stocks), Gary Bozowski (600 Micros), Alex Swift (270) and Amanda Angstadt (Slingshots). The 2021 winners were Ryan Krachun (Modifieds), Jonathan John (270) and PJ Bozowski (Slingshots). Scott Hulmes, Nick Sandone and Gary Bozowski were repeat winners in 2021.

How about racing to a championship in your first full season of competition on the Spirit Auto Center quarter mile? Well, that’s exactly what Connor Gross did. After missing the first two weeks of the season, Gross strung a series of top five finishes together. He added two wins and had collected an impressive eleven top fives and fourteen top tens by season end in the Hyper Racing/EVO Injection 600 Micro Sprints. And Gross managed to find time to graduate from high school in June as well.

Also with two wins on the season, Steve Bracall finished second to Gross with Frank Holmes, Eddie Barber, III and Robert Pierce rounding out the top five. Rich Deck, PJ Williams, Steven Snyder, Chris Fenimore and Brandon Pavel rounded out the top ten in a division that saw one hundred and eighty different drivers throughout the 2021 season.

For the third time since joining forces with John and Amanda Blanda, the team of Blanda and Swift claimed their third championship in the 270 Micro Sprints. The No. 15 team as shared the title once with Nick Skias, one the title outright twice and finished 2nd in the other year. This team has won more than thirty races together and has no plans of stopping any time soon.

Nick Skias finished second followed by Nick Walton, Tommy Rinck, and John Wagner, Jr. Jimmy Wagner, Dom Pomponi, Lee Nardelli, Tom Landwher and Tyler Grau completed the top ten in points.

Amanda Angstadt raced to her first Spirit title in the All Star Slingshot division with four wins during the 2021 season along with eight second place runs. Amanda was the third Bridgeport track champion of 2021 to graduate from high school during the 2021 season. All of the champion’s finishes were in the top five, including one race where an engine was provided by the team of Ryan Davey after Angstadt had mechanical issues.

Michael Beckett finished second in points with three feature wins followed by Ryan Davey with one win, rookie PJ Bozowski and Tim Franks.

In Poker Series competition on the quarter mile, Colin White was the Poker Series Champion for the Hyper 600/EVO Injection 600s. Alex Swift won the title in the 270 micro sprints with Brett Bieber crowned as the champion in the All Star Slingshots. Poker Series titles are determined based upon the cards that a driver earns with his top thirteen finish in each event.

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