Top Drivers Honored at 2010 Awards Banquet

November 21, 2010 at 11:03 AM

The 51st season at the Holland NASCAR Motorsports Complex came to a formal close on Saturday evening, November 20th with the annual awards banquet, honoring the champions and top competitors from the 2010 racing season at the Western New York race plant. The event was held in the Fillmore Ballroom of the Millennium Airport Hotel in Cheektowaga, NY.

Buffalo based comedian Nick Syracuse entertained the crowd of about 300 in between awards presentations.

During the banquet, a collection was held to benefit Bank of Holland Charger champion Zach Myers, who was seriously injured in an ATV incident earlier in the week. Zach is currently improving, but remains in serious condition at the Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo. In addition to the championship hardware and point fund monies, each divisional champion received a full size photo posterboard placard of car and driver courtesy of the VSP Marketing Graphic Group of West Seneca, NY.

Mike Fiebelkorn, Jr. of Eden NY earned his second career track title, taking top honors in the NASCAR Raginwolf.com Pro Modifieds. Fiebelkorn scored three consecutive feature wins at the mid-point of the season which put him in the driver’s seat for the championship in Holland’s designated NASCAR Whelen All-American Series division, adding to a consistent record of top three points finishes in the last four seasons of competition.. In adding the 2010 title to the 2007 crown on his resume, Fiebelkorn earned $3,000 in points funds plus additional contingency monies for his efforts. Joining Fiebelkorn on the Pro Modified podium were Amy Catalano and Joe Evans. Catalano recorded but one win for the season, but consistent top five finishes kept her in the championship hunt until the final points night. Amy was also the recipient of the annual Holland Woman in Racing Award, and the Catalano crew won the Best Appearing Pit Crew Award. Evans likewise had one feature win for the summer, and was voted by the fans as the division’s Most Popular Driver. The third place points finish was Joe’s third consecutive seasonal top three.

In addition, the top five drivers in the 2010 Hoosier Tire/Sunoco Race Fuels Holland-Spencer Pro Modified Challenge Series were feted. Buck Catalano of Ontario, NY was crowned as the champion of the ten race series. Amy Catalano placed second, with Jeff Ruddy, Kevin Miller, and Dick Kluth completing the top five.

On the strength of seven victories, T.J. Johnson of South Wales NY earned the 2010 Late Model of Tomorrow championship - the title was his second in three seasons. Johnson was also selected by the balloting of the fans as the division’s Most Popular Driver. 2009 champ Eldon King III scored a single win en route to a second place finish in the LAMOT points chase. Nick Crassi was named the division’s Most Improved Driver and took third place in the final points run-down. Zach Myers had a career best season in Bank of Holland Charger action in 2010. The East Concord, NY driver had four wins on the season, including two in the final three points events to break open a tight points chase and earn his first ever track title. In addition, Myers’ #17x Malibu was selected as the division’s Martin Bros. Chevrolet Best Appearing Car award. Zach’s father Tom Myers accepted the awards on behalf of Zach.

Ted "Big Show" Welshans raced to his first Charger feature win and grabbed second in the seasonal points run. In addition, the West Falls Racing Team, including Ted and his Charger division racing brothers Matt and Nik, was selected as winner of the division’s Best Appearing Pit Crew award. Rich Carnes picked up his first career feature win and placed third in the final points tally. Rich was also named as the division’s Most Improved Driver and was selected by the fans as the Charger class Most Popular Driver.

George Quintana of Eden NY followed up a third place seasonal showing in ‘09 with a first ever 4-cylinder Hornets track title in 2010. Quintana visited victory lane five times, including a stretch of three consecutive wins to claim the crown. Though winless for the year, Jason Adams strung together consistent top five finishes to place second in the Hornets final standings, while Tony Carbone notched his first two career feature wins en route to a third place points finish and the division’s Rookie of the Year title. In addition, Tony’s #31 Honda was judged the division’s Best Appearing Car, and the "Dago Fast" Racing Team of Tony and his racing cousins Dylan Carbone and Chris Powers was awarded the Hornet division’s Best Appearing Pit Crew Award.

In a points battle that went down to the final event, Ashley Kirchberger of West Seneca NY grabbed her third 4-cylinder Queen Bees title in four seasons. Ashley paid six visits to victory lane, including four straight to end the season and wrap up the championship. With four victories, Sylvia Miszczak made a serious run at the title, but fell just short to claim second in the final standings. Sylvia was also named as the Most Improved Driver for the combined Hornet and Queen Bee entries. 2009 champ Samantha Lutz placed third in the final 2010 run-down, and earned the division’s Most Popular Driver honors.

Scott Pastorius of Arcade NY had but a single feature win, but he managed to eke out a second career points title in the a tight three-driver battle for the M&M Figure 8 Car crown. Pastorius’ first title was in the 2002 season. Scott was also selected by the fans as the division’s Most Popular Driver. In addition to the second place trophy for his Hornet racing efforts, Jason Adams claimed runner-up honors in the Figure 8 Car class, falling a mere four points shy of the top spot. Adams notched four wins for the year, and was forced out of two other events while leading due to mechanical issues - for this, Adams also received the division’s Hard Luck Award. Dave Reese, Jr. was just 10 points off the top slot to take third in the final standings. Reese picked up four feature wins, and was named the division’s Most Improved Driver.

The Casey’s TQ Midget Series, which considered Holland as its home track in 2010, also honored their champion at this affair, as Justin Mapes of Franklinville NY teamed with car owner Gordon Steffan for their third consecutive Series championship. Mapes was also named the division’s Most Popular Driver.

Major race win awards were presented to Patrick Emerling, for his win in the Pro Modified George Decker Memorial 100, and Dave Krawczyk and Matt Welshans for their victories in 50 lap specials for the Bank of Holland Chargers. Mike Piscitello accepted the Budweiser 100 trophy on behalf of race winner Sege Fidanza, who was unable to attend as he recovers from recent health issues.

The Unsung Hero Award was presented to Race Director Scott Wander, in recognition of his 20 years on the Holland staff in various operational and race official positions. The NASCAR Craftsman Mechanic of the Year Award was presented to Dave Catalano, crew chief for wife Amy’s racing efforts, and a competitor himself in the Late Models of Tomorrow. A Media Appreciation award was presented to long time area race announcer and WXRL-AM racing radio show host Ken Hangauer, Jr. Sponsorship Appreciation awards were presented to VSP Marketing Graphics Group, Bank of Holland, Try-It Distributing, and Martin Brothers Chevrolet. The Late Models of Tomorrow Series presented appreciation awards to Mighty Taco, Auto Wrench Connection, Piscitello Design, Dr. Leon Kantor, and Trank Real Estate and Insurance. On behalf of the Casey’s TQ Midget Series, Charlie DiRosa presented an appreciation award to Tim Bennet of the Holland Motorsports Complex. Other award winners included:

NASCAR Ragingwolf.com Pro Modifieds -

  • Feature race winners: Buck Catalano, Patrick Emerling.
  • Points Awards 4-10: Jeff Ruddy, Tim Welshans, Kevin Miller, Buck Catalano, Don King, Chuck Anderson, Patrick Emerling.
  • Best Appearing Car: Kevin Miller #45. Most Improved Driver: Jeff Ruddy.
  • Hard Luck Award: Chuck Anderson.

Late Models of Tomorrow -

  • Feature race winners: Dave Whittaker.
  • Points Awards 4-10: Mike Ticco, Brandon Glover, Sean Dolan, Joshua Hathaway, Dave Whittaker, Jason Gwin, J.D. Roberts.
  • Clark Rice Memorial Rookie of the Year: Brandon Glover.
  • Best Appearing Pit Crew: J.D. Roberts #70 crew.
  • Best Appearing Car: Brandon Glover #21.
  • Hard Luck Award: J.D. Roberts.

Bank of Holland Chargers -

  • Feature race winners: Dave Krawczyk.
  • Points Awards 4-10: Jim Loffredo, Dave Krawczyk, Mark Harsch, Jerry Kosmowski, Nik Welshans, Rob Miszczak, Tom Northem.
  • Clark Rice Memorial Rookie of the Year: Nik Welshans. Hard Luck Award: Mike Flaig.

4-cylinder Hornets -

  • Feature race winners: Eric Brown (3).
  • Points Awards 4-10: Eric Brown, Waylon Price, Jeff Szafraniec, Jammer Mueckl, Bob Marzec, Eric Marzec, Chris Powers.
  • Most Popular Driver: Jeff Szafraniec.
  • Hard Luck Award: Jammer Mueckl.

Queen Bees -

  • Points Awards 4-6: Elaine Pimpo, Kim Skoney, Robin Frey.

M&M U-Pull-It Figure 8 Cars -

  • Points Awards 4-10: Joe Merlino, Eric Marzec, Bob Marzec, Mike Eckam, Joe Mastrocicco III, Butcher Palmer, Eric Brown.
  • Clark Rice Memorial Rookie of the Year: Eric Marzec.

The Holland NASCAR Motorsports Complex will open for its 52nd consecutive season of racing on Saturday, May 30, 2011.