Penn Can banquet honors 2012 champions

The Montdale Country Club was the venue Friday for the annual Penn Can Speedway banquet where close to two hundred guests assembled on a rainy evening to honor the top drivers and teams of 2012. Champions were honored in all of the divisions with many special awards being presented and point fund monies were also distributed courtesy of American Race Tires, VP Fuels, and Trackside Products of Endicott, New York to the top team.

In the modified division Joey Grammes was honored with his first Penn Can championship. While calling the track his home speedway for many of his years in racing, Grammes never was able to get the title until this past season. In accepting the honor, Grammes praised the competitors he raced with every Friday night while giving much of the credit for his success to his family, crew and sponsors. He stated that he would return to defend his championship in a car owned and prepared by his brother Brad. Finishing second, after a yearlong battle, was Michael Schane.  Schane followed by Kevin Bates, Kevin Hartnett and Mike Colsten.

Alex Stanton fought off all challengers to win his first ever sportsman championship at Penn Can. Finishing behind Stanton were 2010 champion, Grant Hilfiger, Butch Green, Rich Talada  and Paul Rooney. Stanton stated that he would like to do some asphalt racing but might return to defend his title in 2013.

The street stock championship came down to the wire with Earl Zimmer edging Ryan Stone for the title. Kenny Sparks, Chad Stone, and Steve Deinhardt rounded out the top five. In the factory stock division George Brown claimed the championship over Steve Simpson with Andy Brigham winning his third four cylinder title over Brian Roth.

The S&W Awards Best Appearing Car awards went to Adams Cable Service Mods: Adam MacGeorge, Kyle Rohner, Ryan Stone, Matt Hynds, and Mark Andrus. The Pump-N-Pantry Car Owner of the Year Award was presented to Brad Grammes in the modified division and Shelly and Missy Stanton in the 602 sportsman. The Penn Can Horizon Award winners were Brian Malcolm, Butch Green, Kenny Sparks, Nathan Hill, and Ronnie Welch.

Adams Cable Service presented the modified Rookie of the Year Award to Mike Nagel Jr along with a check for $500. The NEP Wireless 602 Sportsman Rookie of the year went to Rich Talada. Earl Zimmer won the award in the street stocks with Brian Roth and Steve Simpson also winning in their respective divisions.

The Pit Steward Awards were presented by Brian Cochardo to Sherry Nagel and Joanne Bates for their dedication and support of Penn Can Speedway over the years.

The Jane Kennerup Outstanding Performance Awards were presented to Michael Schane and Grant Hilfiger for their accomplishments during the 2012 season.

Appreciation Plaques were presented Penn Can announcer Jim Murdoch for his fine work behind the microphone and Brett Deyo for his hard work and dedication to the speedway over the years.

Banquet Notes: Special Events Co-Coordinator Brett Deyo outlined plans for another season at Penn Can. Dates for the Clash at the Can and the season ending King of the Can Weekend were announced along with details concerning the lucrative purse to be presented at each event. A change in format was also announced with the 602 Sportsman joining the modifieds for the big June Clash at the Can. Promoters Al Wilcox and Reed Miller announced that the 2013 schedule will be released shortly. Sponsors for the 2012 season were all acknowledged and thanked for their support. They also thanked everyone for supporting Penn Can in 2012 and hoped to see everyone Opening Day.  Teams were awarded beautiful trophies and plaques prepared by S&W Awards. Speedway announcer Jim Murdoch informed the fans that his job is taking him out of the area and will not be able to return in 2013.