By Camden Proud
OSWEGO, NY (May 29, 2022) – Lockport, NY’s Bobby Holmes has only started two J&S Paving 350 Supermodified feature events at Oswego Speedway. He has won both of them, with each victory for a different car owner, and in a different race car.
While he will pilot the MacLeod Racing No. 32 this season; due to engine issues, Holmes last night was tabbed to drive Mike Barbera’s ‘Purple People Eater’ No. 75.
Holmes started on the outside pole of the 35-lap Memorial Weekend Special and never looked back enroute to his second career 350 Supermodified checkered.
“The handling was starting to go away at the end and I wasn’t sure why, but I looked at the right rear and it is blistered to the chords, so that would explain it,” Holmes said. “Norm (MacLeod) and Mike (Barbera) put this deal together. We blew a motor in the 32 at Evans Mills. Mike rang us up and told me the only way I could drive his car is if we win, so I didn’t want to let him down. I have to thank Mike for putting me in the car. I had a purple TQ car and we did a lot of winning in that, so I guess there is something about purple. Tonight we are numbered 75, but really we’re 99 for Terry Strong. Thank you to Top Quality Construction, CME Electrical Supply, Gilbert Excavating Service, Raby’s Ace Home Center, WW Drywall, and Colosse Cheese Store for supporting this team.”
Runner-up Chase Locke, who will make the weekly trek from Chester, NH to compete for a track title this season, was pleased to get the year started off on the right foot. It was his third career runner up finish at the Speedway.
“I definitely thought we had a shot tonight,” commented Locke. “The car got really hooked up at the end. It started to loosen up for us. We’ve been tight all day. It was exciting though. A really fun race knowing Jeffrey (Battle) was behind me and kind of expecting him to be there. The 75 did very well keeping it straight. I could see his right rear was blistering bad and I watched him get sideways so I thought we might have a shot. I just want to thank my Dad, Grandpa, and brother. They help out a lot. I wouldn’t be here without them.”
Jeffrey Battle, a former Classic champion, and three-time 350 Supermodified winner at Oswego, was hot on Locke’s heels for the runner-up spot.
“The car was going pretty good,” Battle stated. “Congratulations to Bobby and Chase. We’re hoping to be out here another time or two and then for Classic, so maybe three more times this year. I just have to say my heart is with all those families in Texas in that awful incident out there and I have to thank all of the fans for coming out, because without them, there would be no short track racing.”
Dalton Doyle and Holmes lead the field to green for the 35-lap Season Opener with Holmes jumping out in front at the start and Doyle settling in for second.
Third starting Locke dueled with dancing partner Mike Bruce to take the position away in the early going with Brian Sobus and Battle following suit.
On lap 3, Bruce ran into issues on the No. 22 and dropped back to the rear of the field.
With five complete, Holmes already had a straightaway lead over Doyle, Locke, Sobus, and Battle.
On lap 7, Locke was able to muster an outside move around the No. 08 of Doyle to advance into the runner-up spot.
With Locke on the move, fifth place Battle knew he would have to follow and wasted no time doing so, going around the outside of both Doyle and Sobus one lap later to run Locke down for second..
Sobus was the next to get by Doyle on lap 12, also using an outside move to take fourth.
Still with a big lead, Holmes began to catch traffic at the halfway point, and this allowed Locke and Battle to close in a bit on the race leader.
By the five to go mark, Locke had closed within less than a car length of Holmes, with Battle still on his tailpipes in a nose to tail, three car duel for the race lead.
This time Holmes proved too strong for the New England invaders picking up the win ahead of Locke, Battle, Sobus, and Bruce in the top five.
Rookie Mike Fowler finished sixth in the Spaulding No. 23, Kyle Perry was seventh, and Doyle, Nick Kinney, and Vern LaFave rounded out the top ten.
Battle was the D&S Landscaping Hard Charger Award winner while Locke was the recipient of the Lighthouse Lanes Up & Comer Award.
The J&S Paving 350 Super season will resume this Saturday, June 4 with a 30-lap main scheduled to run alongside the 50-lap Winged Super Challenge for big block Supers.
Barlow’s Concessions 71st Season Kickoff
J&S Paving 350 Super Memorial Day Weekend 35
Saturday, May 28, 2022
Feature (35-laps): 1. 75 BOBBY HOLMES, 2. 88 Chase Locke, 3. 14 Jeffrey Battle, 4. 45 Brian Sobus, 5. 22 Mike Bruce, 6. 23 ® Mike Fowler, 7. 20 Kyle Perry, 8. 08 Dalton Doyle, 9. 7 Nick Kinney, 10. 97 Vern LaFave, 11. 50 Dave Cliff, 12. 41 Brad Babb, DNS 5 Ralph Clark
Heat 1 (10-laps): 1. 14 Jeffrey Battle, 2. 75 Bobby Holmes, 3. 22 Mike Bruce, 4. 20 Kyle Perry, 5. 7 Nick Kinney, 6. 41 Brad Babb
Heat 2 (10-laps): 1. 45 Brian Sobus, 2. 88 Chase Locke, 3. 08 Dalton Doyle, 4. 50 Dave Cliff, 5. 23 ® Mike Fowler, 6. 97 Vern LaFave, 7. 5 Ralph Clark
Group Time Trials: 1. 14 Jeffrey Battle – 16.838, 2. 45 Brian Sobus – 16.992, 3. 50 Dave Cliff – 17.001, 4. 22 Mike Bruce – 17.016, 5. 88 Chase Locke – 17.059, 6. 75 Bobby Holmes – 17.188, 7. 08 Dalton Doyle – 17.345, 8. 7 Nick Kinney – 17.570, 9. 23 ® Mike Fowler – 17.578, 10. 41 Brad Babb – 17.595, 11. 97 Vern LaFave – 17.607, 12. 20 Kyle Perry – 17.617, 13. 5 Ralph Clark – 18.718
D&S Landscaping Hard Charger: #14 Jeffrey Battle
Lighthouse Lanes Up & Comer: #88 Chase Locke