Bullring Battle: Andy Bachetti Emerges from Rough-and-Tumble Accord ‘Battle of the Bullring 7’ Victorious

Written by Chris Moore

ACCORD, NY – The Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series (STSS) Fueled By Sunoco visit to Accord Speedway is dubbed the ‘Battle of the Bullring’ each summer.

Emphasis on the word “battle” on Tuesday night at Ulster County Bullring.

Andy Bachetti ultimately grabbed the bull by the horns and picked up a $5,000 top prize in the 50-lap main event, serving as Round No. 6 of the Halmar International North Region.

On a night that saw a variety of drivers charging through the field, Sheffield, Mass.’s Bachetti won for the first time with the series since last October at Thunder Mountain Speedway in Center Lisle, N.Y.

“We’ve been close all year,” Bachetti, who had earned top-10 finishes in each of the first five STSS Halmar International North Region events, said after climbing out of the Jim Winchell No. 17. “We’ve just needed a little bit more.”

At the start of the rough-and-tumble main, Jimmy Wells used the outside pole to take command in his No. 831. Bachetti, who started fourth, worked into second.

Following early cautions for skirmishes throughout the field, a green-flag stretch ensued from laps 11-17 with Bachetti chasing Wells into lapped traffic on the tight bullring.

Back-to-back cautions on laps 27 and 28 ultimately changed the race’s complexion.

Bachetti edged ahead of Wells on a 28th-lap restart. Entering turn three, the pair connected and Wells spun, ending his outstanding drive.

Craig Hanson now moved into second with Mat Williamson, who had restarted last after a tangle on the opening lap with the Behrent’s Performance Warehouse No. 3, emerging in third.

Entering turn one on lap 35, the order was shaken up again with Hanson spinning to collect several cars and Williamson tagging the rear of the field.

Over the final 15 laps of the main, Bachetti held command, driving off to his fifth career victory with the Short Track Super Series.

All eyes were on a wild battle for the runner-up spot involving Rich Ricci Jr., Matt Sheppard and Mike Gular.

On the final lap, it was Gular moving into second in the most unlikely fashion.

Gular’s Terry Fasnacht team broke down on the way to the track in the Lehigh Valley. With the assistance of racer Ryan Krachun and his borrowed truck, they arrived just in time for hot laps.

The night appeared to be over when Gular’s No. 2A went up in smoke during his heat race.

Mike Ricci then offered his back-up car to Gular, which he qualified through the consolation. Starting the feature 24th, the Boyertown, Pa., driver shook off a lap-seven tangle to race back to second, worth $3,000 plus the $200 Land Hoe Maintenance Hard Charger Award.

After starting 19th, perennial Accord champion Rich Ricci Jr. recorded a podium finish in the family owned No. 406.

After heading to the pits early on, Sheppard, of Savannah, N.Y., methodically moved back through the field for fourth and 18th-starter J.R. Hurlburt of Otego, N.Y., recorded his best series finish of the season in fifth with the Jamie and Denise Page Algonkin Motel No. 6H.

After his 35th-lap spin, Craig Hanson of Johnstown, N.Y., rallied to sixth, followed by Anthony Perrego of Montgomery, N.Y., who started 23rd; 27th-starter Joe Judge of New Paltz, N.Y.; Mike Mahaney of King Ferry, N.Y., who started from the pole; and 26th-starting Rich Ricci III of New Paltz, N.Y.

Four Rob Sherlock Roofing heat races were required, with $100 victories going to Billy Decker, Leo Fotopoulos, Wells and Jimmy Horton. Danny Tyler annexed the consolation.

The record will state Tim Hartman Jr. started on the pole and won the 25-lap STSS Crate 602 Sportsman North Region main event. This race, however, was far from a green-to-checkered romp for the Niskayuna, N.Y., driver.

Young Blaine Klinger, a regular at Afton (N.Y.) Motorsports Park, outgunned Hartman from the outside pole to lead lap one and kept Hartman at bay for much of the event, Race No. 4 of the STSS Crate 602 Sportsman North Region.

With lapped traffic looming, Hartman was able to slip past Klinger inside the race’s final five laps.

Klinger did not go down without a fight. The Walton, N.Y., driver pulled back up to the bumper of Hartman on the final lap, but settled for second.

Hartman extended his STSS point lead with his second series win of the season, pocketing $1,500.

Klinger was trailed by 10th-starter Travis Green, Ryan Macartney and Mikey Corbin.

Jerry Kingeter won the accompanying 20-lap Four Cylinder main event, taking home a $300 top prize.

BULLRING BITS: Filling the Accord Speedway pit area for the track’s only midweek event of 2019 were 33 STSS Modifieds, 36 STSS Crate 602 Sportsman and 21 Four Cylinders….

The WELD Wheels Hard Luck Award went to Billy Pauch Jr., who qualified amidst a plume of smoke for the 50-lap feature and was unable to start the 50-lap main due to engine issues with the Bill Pascual No. 3….

Stewart Friesen retired from the event 15 laps shy of the finish due to an oil leak on the Halmar International No. 44. Friesen had run much of the race with a flat left-front tire….

More than $30,000 in purse money was distributed for the two STSS open-wheel divisions alone….

The STSS Halmar International North Region takes a one-month break before heading to Woodhull (N.Y.) Raceway on Tuesday, Aug. 13 with both the Modifieds and Crate 602 Sportsman in competition….

Next up for the Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco is the Sunoco Race Fuels/Insinger Performance York County Nationals at BAPS Motor Speedway in York Haven, Pa., this Sunday, July 14. STSS Velocita-USA South Region Modifieds race 50 laps for $10,000 to win! Also on the card: Central PA Legends Cars.

To learn more about the 2019 Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco, visit www.shorttracksuperseries.com, e-mail bdmotorsportsmedia@gmail.com, check out ‘Short Track Super Series’ on Facebook or @ShortTrackSS on Twitter or Instagram.

The Short Track Super Series is presented by American Racer/Lias Tire, Sunoco Race Fuel, Insinger Performance, Bob Hilbert Sportswear, Halmar International, Velocita-USA, Design for Vision/Sunglass Central, Rob Sherlock Roofing, ATL Racing Fuel Cells, Behrent’s Performance Warehouse, Beyea Custom Headers, Bicknell Racing Products, Dirt Track Digest, EIBACH Springs, Escape RV, Fast Axle, Fox Racing Shocks, Henry’s Exhaust, Hig Fab, HyperCo, Kirkey Racing Fabrication, Land Hoe Maintenance, K&N, MJK Home Maintenance, Precision Hydraulic & Oil, QA1, Racing Optics, Superior Remodeling, Teo-Pro Car, VAHLCO, Velocita, WELD Racing & Wilwood.


Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco Halmar International North Region Event No. 6 Modified Feature Finish (50 laps): ANDY BACHETTI, Mike Gular, Rich Ricci Jr., Matt Sheppard, J.R. Hurlburt, Craig Hanson, Anthony Perrego, Joe Judge, Mike Mahaney, Rich Ricci III, Brandon Grosso, Leo Fotopoulos, Tim Hartman Jr., Corey Cormier, Mat Williamson, Allison Ricci, Mike Kolka Jr., Jimmy Wells, Stewart Friesen, Danny Creeden, Tyler Boniface, Tyler Treacy, Billy Decker, Danny Tyler, Billy Van Pelt, Jimmy Horton.

Did Not Start: Billy Pauch Jr.

Did Not Qualify: Kevin Krom, Mike Ricci, Kurt Hundeland, Ryan Jordan, Lenny Helmich Jr., Roger Henion.  

American Racer/Lias Tire Bonuses (FREE Tire): Joe Judge (eighth) & Corey Cormier (14th)
ATL Fuel Cells Bonus ($200 Certificate): J.R. Hurlburt (fifth)
Behrent’s Performance Warehouse Bonuses ($50 Gift Card):
Matt Sheppard (fourth) & Mike Mahaney (ninth)
EIBACH Springs Bonus ($100 Certificate): Craig Hanson (sixth)
Henry’s Exhaust System Power Position ($50 Certificate):
Brandon Grosso (11th)
Land Hoe Maintenance Hard Charger Award ($200): Mike Gular (24th to second)
MJK Home Maintenance Heat-Race Hard Charger ($125):
Stewart Friesen (seventh to second)
Racing Optics Bonus (Sleeve of Tear-Offs):
Rich Ricci Jr.(third)
Rob Sherlock Roofing Heat Winners ($100 each): Billy Decker, Leo Fotopoulos, Jimmy Wells & Jimmy Horton
Sunoco Race Fuels/Insinger Performance Bonuses ($50 Certificates): Mike Gular (second), Leo Fotopoulos (12th) & Tyler Treacy (22nd)
Superior Remodeling Halfway Leader Award ($200): Jimmy Wells
WELD Wheels Hard Luck Award (FREE 5XL Wheel):
Billy Pauch Jr.
Wilwood ‘Lucky 7’ Bonus ($50 Certificate): Anthony Perrego (seventh)

Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco Crate 602 Sportsman North Region Event No. 4 Feature Finish (25 laps):
TIM HARTMAN JR., Blaine Klinger, Travis Green, Ryan Macartney, Michael Corbin, Jim Housworth, Tyler Johnston, Daniel Morgiewicz, Jim Johnson, Tommy Collins, Grant Hilfiger, Corey Cormier, Rick Wegner Jr., Joe Higham, Steve Williams, Cole Hentschel, Joe Conklin, Kevin Stevens, Aaron Doolittle, Jonathan Swift, Joe Toth, Matt Shultz, Jordan Lawrence, Dustin Jordan, Hunter Lapp, Bobby Flood.

Did Not Start: Cole Stangle

Did Not Qualify: Joe Bonetti, Nick Plumstead, Danny Tyler, Brian Durbin, Alex Van Pelt, Tighe Sherlock, Kyle Rohner, John Cole, Mike Senecal.

Four Cylinder Feature Finish (20 laps): JERRY KINGETER, Tim Curry, Ryan Heady, Dave Donovan, Brandon Conklin, Tim DeGote, Richard Smith, Chris Dyer, Ken Barringer, John Woinoski, Bill Rion, Cassandra Woinoski, George Barringer, Kyle Smith, Jeffery Tubbs.

Did Not Start: Jeff Degroat, Robert Phillips, Travis Cogswell, Anthony Zucchino, Jimmy DiFulvio.