When Steve Lewis Sr., captured the prestigious “King of The Hill 100” several years ago in the former Pro Stock division at Ransomville Speedway, he thought nothing could ever top that. He was wrong.
Lewis Sr., recently savored another victory that he says means so much more. It was by his teenage son, Steve Lewis Jr., who won his first career DIRT.car Sportsman race at Ransomville on Aug. 19. Both father and son were still glowing as they prepared in the pit area for last Friday’s racing at Ransomville.
“It was way more exciting for me,” Lewis said of his son’s win.
Three years ago Ransomville management created the Novice Sportsman division to assist the learning curve for drivers who were planning on entering the regular DIRT.car Sportsman class.
It has proven successful with nearly 15 cars on hand on a weekly basis. Some Novice graduates, like Lewis Jr., are now winning races in the regular DIRT.car Sportsman ranks.
In his victory 10 days ago, Lewis Jr., held off the challenges of another Novice graduate, Austin Susice. Susice was last season’s Ransomville Novice Sportsman champion. Susice also captured his first career regular DIRT.car Sportsman win earlier this season.
“We had the Sportsman car sitting in the garage from when I raced,” said Lewis Sr. “I figured that when the Novice class came along that it would be a great way to get him into racing. … He was smooth from the beginning. He wasn’t superfast but he was smooth. If it wasn’t for the Novice class we probably wouldn’t be in the big cars yet but still in the Go-Karts but the Novice program worked out.”
“That win has taken two years,” said Lewis Jr., who will be a senior at Wilson High School. “I started in Novice a couple years ago and kept getting better and eventually got the win.
“The Novice program is great because I moved right up from a Go-Kart and jumped right into Novice Sportsman. I started racing Go-Karts when I was 6 or 7. I got into the Novice class when I was 15.
Genesee trio claims titles
Elsewhere, Kyle Inman, Dave DuBois and Brad Shepard clinched season point championships at Genesee Speedway Saturday night. Genesee will conclude its season next Saturday.
Inman finished second in last Saturday’s Sportsman feature to gain his first career championship. Inman overcame a late afternoon obstacle thanks to teammate Brian Bellinger.
“We were getting ready to leave the house and we found a rear hub that was broken and luckily we called up Brian,” said Inman. “He had a spare one for us because we didn’t have one at the shop. We got here to the track and changed it. We got it fixed. My guys were right on top of it. We worked hard all year for this championship.”
DuBois clinched the 360 Late Model title but not without controversy. On Lap 11 of the feature DuBois tried to move under and then in front of leader Brian Kotarski. DuBois had substantial contact with the side of Kotarski sending it head into the fourth turn wall. Kotarski was not seriously hurt.
Following the incident DuBois was sent to the back of the field for the restart by track officials, who did not believe that DuBois intentionally caused the accident. DuBois worked his way back to third to earn the 360 crown.
Kotarski saw the incident differently/
“He should have been blackflagged off the track for taking out the leader on a move that wasn’t going to work on a rough track,” Kotarski said.
DuBois is in a very tight Genesee Crate Late Model points race with Beamer Guzzardi which will be decided during next week’s Genesee season finale.
Shepard finished third in the Mini Stock headliner to clinch that division’s crown.