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2007   *  Event 1   *  Event 2   *  Event 3   *  Event 4   *  Event 5   *  Event 6   *  Event 7   *  Event 8   *  Event 9   *  Event 10   *  Event 11 * 2007 Standings

Savarese First to Repeat in 2008, Moves to 2nd

By Edgar Perez

October 20, 2007 - Englishtown, NJ - Looks like fall will never get to The East Coast Supercharging Corvette Challenge presented by Yank Racing Converters and Gear Star Transmission. The third week in October and we are still racing in 1500+ DA with temperatures in the mid to high 70's and the humidity still lingering, it was comfortable racing but not what we would expect this time of year. While we cannot expect ice storms, we could expect the "Ice Man" Ralph Savarese to turn it on when it counts. Just like last year, Savarese is making a late surge for the Championship. His event win moves him into 2nd place and with it being his second event win, the all important tiebreaker is in his favor and he will win any tie breaker if he ends up tied in points in his bid to become the first three-time Champion. Today's event was a marathon as it seemed Raceway Park had every class under the sun running. With gates opening around 11:30 am, we did not get to the final around 7:30.

For today's Cartek Racing Pro 10.0 coverage click here.

Round one - 67 racers made the first round for the Corvette Challenge bracket race, the 10th race of 12 this season. We will start with the return of a couple of our Pittsburgh, PA area racers. Corky Hiesler and Jim Cummings returned to the Corvette Challenge and raced the GM High Tech EFI race in addition to ours. Only one made it past first round however. Hiesler defeated Dennis Ciccone, who went red, with a .101 light and 11.107 on 11.16 dial. Cummings lost to Shawn Cavanagh when he went red and Cavanagh went 10.386 @ 134.74 in his supercharged Corvette that also qualified 6th in our Cartek Racing Pro 10.0 today. Several racers were preparing to do double duty today with a test 11.50 index class which had super turnout in the evening. Rich Shuleski was one and dialed his Grand Sport Corvette at 11.19 this round and won when Bill Wilson was late the tree and coupled it with a breakout. Shuleski only needed to run 11.321 @ 110.37 on his dial to accept the win. Three drivers actually dialed 11.50 in this round. Two came away winners and was one on the short end of the stick. John Hadyniak (11.50) got the better of Rob Farley who broke out on his 13.03 dial when his Corvette ran under, 12.982, despite having the better reaction time, while Hadyniak ran 11.513 @ 115.27. Gabe Ciccone was able to freely run under his 11.50 dial when Ken Tyler went red. Gabe ran 11.229 @ 127.70. Sam Swetiny was the third 11.50 dialer and he was late on the tree and needed to run under trying to catch Vic Gandhi. He could and still broke out and Gandhi was the winner with an 11.742 @ 101.71 on 11.68 dial. Gandhi was also running the EFI event. It is always tough to lose first round but even tougher when you let one get away from you. Paul Bogdan cut a .020 light which 9 times out of 10 in this series gets you a win. He carried a nice lead to the stripe but broke out on his 11.70 dial going 11.698, only .002 too quick and John Trescott took the win light and advanced. There were some really good reaction times to report this round with Ralph Blauvelt scoring a .001 yet he was lucky to get the win. You see Blauvelt ran under his dial of 14.10 by almost a tenth! He still got he win because his opponent, Damien Bonkowski was nearly half a second under his dial of 13.50 @ 12.908. Louis Calicchia scored the second best light of the round with a .003. He too got away with a win after breaking out 11.587 on 11.60 dial when Gary Hurta broke out by more, 11.750 on 11.78 dial. I know he won't like seeing his name today but the other side of the reaction time spectrum was James Tucker who must have taken his eye of the tree for a second, really, with a 1.141 reaction time. Joe Signore was the benefactor of the late light and was on his way to the next round. John Panuzzo was dead-on this round going 13.195 on 13.19 dial. Unfortunately that only gets him an early shower as he was late on the tree in yet another loss to Dave Tortolani who was better at the tree and 11.63 on 11.60 dial. I guess some guy's just have other guys numbers. Another dead-on driver was eventual winner Ralph Savarese. He ran 11.208 n his 11.20 prediction and took the win over Bill Fischer Sr. took a shot at the tree but unfortunately went red before Savarese left the starting line. Our eventual runner up, Chris Haase got through Tony Cupolo when Cupolo was well off his dial and Haase carried a .054 RT and 13.741 on 13.64 dial to the win.

Other drivers who were unable to advance were Joe Donnelly, Sheila Murchan, Jerry Muniz, Joel Fromkin, Wayne Hagopian, John Arguello, Ed Mowton, James Peins, Gen Paterno, Mike Calicchia, Ken Gallassio, Malcolm Procter, Frank Fiori, Gary O'Connell, Joe Cali, Edgar Perez, Michale Prisco, James Kovitch, Ron Higgins and Andy Heuser

2007 Event 10 Ladder

Round two - Louis Calicchia scored the round best .006 reaction time and ended Vic Gandhi's Corvette Challenge day running 11.589 on 11.57 dial forcing Gandhi to break out, 11.669 on 11.68 dial. Corky Hiesler rode his .008 reaction time to a win as well over Bob Trieschmann, who was dead-on, 13.409 on 13.40 but could not overcome the light. Hiesler went 11.120 on 11.08 dial. Tony Abbruzze had the third best light of the round with a .012 and also took the win because of it. He almost gave it away though as he broke out going 13.068 on 13.07 dial but Michael Archibald, who was .165 on tree, broke out by more, 12.436 on 12.55. Two of our qualified Pro 10.0 drivers ended up paired this round. Shawn Cavanaugh would face Chris Young. Cavanaugh dialed 10.37 to Young's 10.28. Then Cavanagh went red but they motored up the track anyway and Young out ET's him going 10.278 @ 131.64 and Cavanagh 10.413 @ 133.99. Savarese faced Shuleski in this round and Rich went red as did Ralph but Rich did it first so Ralph advanced. Good thing for Savarese as he went 11.107 on 11.20 dial. Haase's face Clifford Bray Jr. and was able to take the win with a.055 to .113 reaction time advantage. Other drivers exiting this round were Don Peppler Jr., Bob Hollingshead, John Ross, David Hollingshead, George Geipel, Joe Signore, Jim Bole, Ken Rammer, Mike Campbell, Joe Latona and Ralph Blauvelt.

Round three - Now we were on the ladder and Louis Calicchia was ranked number one with his .006 light in the prior round and he would get a bye this round so he easily advanced. Dave Tortolani got away with what would be his worst light of the day as Peter Lopresti's was even worse. Tortolani was able to take the win with an 11.684 on 11.56 dial to Pete's 12.997 on 12.80 dial. How bad was it, .391 for Dave and .407 for Pete. This will never happen again I am sure. Chris Young ran his best ET of the day but it was a breakout 10.225 on 10.26 dial. Tony Abbruzze broke out too but Young’s was worse so he would advance. John Trescott was able to take advantage of Dave Buddendorff's .200 light to advance to the next round as well in his Championship hunt. John Hadyniak did the same with a win over Charles Fay. Hadyniak ran 11.475 on 11.46 dial as Fay went 11.761 on 11.60. Hadyniak also had the RT advantage. Corky Hiesler's Corvette day would come to end this round when he went red -.027 while running 11.092 on 11.08 dial. Steve Pistilli was on the winning side of that red. Dan Swadis Jr. was back at the track for the first time this year and made it pretty far but could not get of this round. In a double breakout race, Doug Bereczki took the win over Swadis running 14.343 on 14.39 dial to Swadis' 13.657 on 13.75. Ralph Savarese schooled Al Salanitro with a .039 light and 11.110 on 11.08 dial while Al did not do too badly on the tree at .052 but broke out trying to stay ahead of Savarese, 13.728 on 13.80. Chris Haase advances this round despite a .150 light getting the better of Eric Fischer in their match.

Round four - Steve Pistilli got the bye run this round thanks to taking out the number seed in the prior round so he was moving on. Haase advanced when Hadyniak went -.020 red. He ran out his car on the win going 11.991 on 12.03 dial. Savarese went dead-on his dial, 11.071 on 11.07 and force John Trescott to break out going 11.811 on 11.86 dial. Tortolani continued going rounds when he went dead-on as well. He went 11.573 on 11.57 dial and won a very close one against Abbruzze who was 13.033 on 13.01 dial. Bereczki advanced this round when Louis Calicchia could not run his number. Calicchia went 11.478 on 11.40 dial making Bereczki 14.438 on 14.30 the winner.

Round five - Tortolani got the bye this round and he was on his way to the semi final. Savarese won a double breakout race against Pistilli. Savarese was .013 on the tree. Pistilli was .053 on the tree. Savarese chased and ran him down breaking out on the 11.07 dial with an 11.061 while Pistilli broke out by more with a 13.086 on 13.16. Haase faced Bereczki who went red on his 14.29 dial so Haase laxed on the tree and ran his car out going 11.936 on 11.98 dial as the weather was really cooling now.

Round six - This time it was Haase's chance at a bye. He was on his way to the final and this time got his dial perfect! 11.920 on 11.92 dial. He was ready. Savarese would have a tougher time this round. He faced Tortolani who laid down a .006 reaction time. Savarese was slower getting off the line with a .060 so was going to have to do some hard chasing. Tortolani, dialed 11.54, would have to ward off the two-time champ in a match that would determine who leaves this race in second place in the points. Anther double breakout! Savages managed to break out the least going 11.044 on 11.05 dial and Dave went 11.487 on the 11.52. Savarese was going to the final.

Round seven - Haase had been to the final one time this year, in event 7. Savarese had also been to the final once this year, in event 6 and came up the winner. The dials were on the cars and Haase would leave first with an 11.91 dial on the car. Savarese would follow with an 11.05 on his car. Haase left with a .104 reaction time and Savarese a .024 so Haase was in trouble. The reaction time difference was what Savarese needed as he ran a comfortable 11.139 on the brakes at 111.53 and Haase could not run his number going 11.944. Both drivers were extremely happy with their performance today. Savarese moved into 2nd place trailing by one point and has a realistic shot at overtaking Trescott for his third Championship. Haase took over the Rookie points lead and holds that by two points. The stage is set for these two drivers just like they wanted it.

Corvette Challenge Points Update

We go into the last points race of the year, October 27, 2008 with seven drivers having a shot at the championship. John Trescott goes in the points leader with 36 points that he as managed to accumulate with consistency and no event wins, which is the first tie breaker. Ralph Savarese, with a late season surge sits in second with 35 points but has the advantage in tiebreakers with two event wins. Should Ralph end up in a tie with anyone in points, he will own all tiebreakers so he will capture the Championship if he is tied in points. They are followed by Don Peppler Jr. with 33 points and Dave Tortolani with 32. These drivers need some help but if both Trescott and Savarese go out early the door will be opened for them. Three drivers have 28 points and need the most help but are still mathematically capable for the Championship. John Hadyniak, Ralph Blauvelt and Doug Bereczki trail Trescott by 8 points. As soon as Trescott takes the first round light, however, these drivers will be eliminated from Championship contention. Should be lots of fun.
2007 Corvette Challenge Standings
Corvette drivers page with more driver information

Rookie of the Year Update

The rookie chase took a turn for the CHAASE, that is Chris Haase. His runner up finish give him 27 total points, 2 points ahead of Steve Pistilli (25) who moved into 2nd with his performance today. Alfred Salanitro follows in third with 24 points and Michael Archibald and Gary Hurta with 22 points each. The key here is both Archibald and Hurta have event wins this year which is the first tie breaker. These drivers are so close that it is nearly impossible to describe all the scenarios for a winner. The only certain thing is all five of these drivers have a realistic shot at the Rookie of the Year honors. Good luck Rookies.
Rookie of the Year Standings

Corvette Challenge Team Challenge Cup

At the end of event 10 things have settled down in the ECSCC Team standings. Ridin' Dirty, at 105 points, holds spot #1 by a mere 5 points over The Eliminators. It's still anyone's guess who'll come out on top with one race remaining. The Vapors trail by yet another 5 points and Going Rounds, barely able to keep it interesting, is a full 21 points from first place. It would take nothing short of a miracle to get any other teams in the running at this point. To date, Ridin' Dirty and The Tree Trimmers share the honor of earning 17 points for a single event, while The Mad Dawgs hold the singular distinction of earning just 1 point. With just days before the last event we'll soon see if any teams can beat the record high or put up a big goose egg. Good luck to all!

Current Team Standings

TeamTeam NameTeam CaptainPoints
T01 Ridin' Dirty Savarese, Ralph 105
T08 The Eliminators Trescott, John 100
T02 The Vapors Tortolani, David 95
T06 Going Rounds Fischer, Eric 84
T10 Tree Trimmers Farley, Rob 81
T09 Mistress and the Mayhem Rudolf, Kimberly 78
T05 More Meds Higgins, Ron 73
T07 The Trap Shooters Kovitch, James 65
T03 Sgt Pepplers Lonely Racers Peppler, Donald 64
T04 CYFA! Sebrowski, Robert 64
T11 Devon's Demons Bole, Devon 62
T12 Mad Dawgs Muniz, Jerry 53
click to see drivers on each team
Click if you cannot see Team Challenge Cup Standings

Spectrum Equipment Service Gear Jammer Award Update

Yet another title up for grabs next week is the Gear Jammers award. Don Peppler Jr. holds the lead with 33 points. It is a very good lead as Tony Cupolo is second back by 6 at 27 points. Peppler's recent bad luck in the early rounds is causing the gap to close. Steve Pistilli has a mathematical shot but would be eliminated when/if Peppler Jr. takes the first round tree. He maintains a shot at the runner-up spot which pays as well so look for some serious gear jamming next week. Good luck to the Gear Jammers. Spectrum Equipment Service once again sponsors the "Gear Jammer of the Year" award, presented at year-end banquet to the racer with most points in his/her manual transmission Corvette.
Gear Jammer Standings.

Awards Handed Out at this Event

  • Ralph Blauvelt won the 'John Panuzzo Jr. Memorial' trophy presented by Team Panuzzo Racing for the best winning reaction time in the 1st round. Ralph Blauvelt was quickest on the tree in the 1st round when his RT was .001.
  • Ken Tyler won the 'Almost Perfect Award' with a loss in the 1st round with the red light closest to .000 (Almost Perfect). Ken Tyler's light was -0.012 and was rewarded a trophy from Old Bridge Township Raceway Park recognizing the effort put forth to try and capture a perfect light but just slightly red.
  • Ralph Savarese won the CCDV 'Closest to Dial Award' by running only .002 off his dial. Ralph Savarese was awarded a trophy and free tech card for a future race from Corvette Club of Delaware Valley.
  • Gary Hurta won the 'Ohh so Close Award' presented by Zaino when being edged out in the 1st round by the smallest margin of victory of .0172. That number is the MOV number on your time slip. Although suffering a loss in the 1st round by the smallest Margin of Victory, Gary Hurta earned a Zaino starter package that includes various Zaino products.
  • All winners of the first round were awarded a trophy . With 79 cars making this event, we sure gave out quite a few trophies or 1st Round Trophy Upgrade Program credits.

Next Two Races

October 27, 2007 - This will be our final points race of the year meaning it is all decided here. The Vette Doctors Pro 8 Shootout will return at this event for its final race of the season. Gates open at 11:00 AM

November 17, 2007 - This will be the Top 16 Gamblers Invitational Race. This is the big one. The Top 16 drivers will be invited to partake in this race in which they will pay an extra $75, (payable to Edgar in the staging lanes) and will compete for a $1,000 payout. Alternates will be invited in the event there is someone who cannot make it. There are other classes running you can race in and this will be the date to end the season long banter between REDGAR and INSANITY. A heads-up Red Sled vs. Blueberry race. Gates open at 8:30 AM

Visit the Drag Schedule at to view Raceway Park's schedule for other events and days for test and tuning.

As always, we couldn't enjoy our passion for racing without the tireless efforts of our coordinators - Edgar Perez, Bob Trieschmann, Dennis Kazimir, Joe Amodea and Paul Ziajski. We'd be reduced to time shots only without our sponsors - many thanks for the continued support of Corvette Challenge - East Coast Supercharging | Yank Racing Converters | Gear Star Transmission | Team Panuzzo | Corvette Club of Delaware Valley - CCDV | Spectrum Equipment Service | Simple Man | QTP - Quick Time Performance | Carroll's Rod & Racecraft | Kooks Custom Headers | CFM Racing | Tortolani Racing | Anger Management Racing | East Coast Corvettes | | Zaino Bros | Pro Torque | Perez Web Design

Pro 8 Shootout - The Vette Doctors | Carroll's Rod & Racecraft | PM Construction | Marchese Homes, LLC | Lucid Diagnostic Imaging Services, LLC

Pro 10.0 Index - Cartek Racing | Silly Goose Racing Stables | Best Western, East Brunswick, NJ | Marchese Homes, LLC .

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