Stewart Friesen, No. 52 Halmar International Toyota Tundra
START : 28
FINISH : 21
NOTES AND QUOTES:
– It was a night of charging to the front for Stewart Friesen in his 72nd NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoor Truck Series start. After qualifying 28th, Friesen was up to the 20th position by lap 3, and when a large incident on lap 16 brought out a red flag Friesen was up front and finished stage 1 in 6th place.
– Friesen ran up front throughout the second stage finishing 7th. An excellent pit stop had him coming into the third stage in 3rd place, and with 32 laps to go Friesen was in the lead.
– Friesen led 13 laps.
– With 3 laps to go Friesen was involved in a wreck collecting many trucks while charging back into to the top five,
– The damage sustained from the lap 3 incident was too severe to make one last charge over the remaining laps of overtime.
“ It was good, led some laps, that was cool, and got some stage points. We battled for everyone building this race team and for all these guys who have worked so hard the last two months. It is obviously good to get through the first one, we were obviously a victim of circumstance, but it was cool. We ran up front with an older piece and we will go full steam ahead next week with our newer stuff and I’m looking forward to the season. We have a good group of guys and had some great pit stops. The over the wall crew was awesome. There are a lot of positives to build from.”
Halmar Friesen Racing of Statesville, NC, is a leading NASCAR Gander RV & Outdoor Truck Series team fielding the Halmar International No. 52 Toyota Tundra for Stewart Friesen.
Heading into Texas Motor Speedway’s Longhorn 350 first in points and with a second place finish there in 2018, things looked good for Stewart Friesen in 2019. He had even captured the pole last year in Texas, and had again just the week before in Martinsville. All things considered, Texas was among Halmar-Friesen Racing’s best shots at a truck series win.
Friesen qualified in the ninth position but was relegated to the rear of the field after it became necessary to change engines in the no. 52 Halmar International Chevy Silverado. What may have seemed like a death sentence for that potential win, ended up being far from it. Though only achieving a second place finish, Friesen was able to make short work of the traffic in front of him, breaking into the top 10 within stage 1 of the race.
Friesen has extended his lead of the points standings to six points over second place after picking up an additional 49 series points at Texas. Despite the HFR team’s hunger for a win, their strategy of consistency is paying off so far, but a win would guarantee Friesen a spot in the playoffs.
Coming in just behind the first place Kyle Busch, Friesen had this to say, “It’s frustrating for sure. I thought we had Kyle (Busch) there at the end but we got loose and that was it. We didn’t have another chance to get back up to him.We continue to get better but we just need to have a flawless night in order to get that first win. Coming up through the field was tough for a little bit through the dirty air. I was lucky enough to get some restarts where the trucks would get loose underneath each other and slide up and punch a pretty big hole I could get through. It was good, we got some breaks coming up through the field and we came close at the end. Overall happy with second but still waiting to finally get to victory lane.”
With a break in the NGOTS till May, Friesen plans to get back to Dirt Racing in the Northeast, where he’s already off to a winning season. Sunday, April 7th, Friesen will hit Middletown NY’s Orange County Fair Speedway for the kick-off to their 100th season of racing. This is a track near and dear to Friesen as it is the home track to many of his Halmar Racing teammates and is a track he often performs well at. In 2018, Friesen captured a win at the Eastern States 200, Northeast Dirt Racing’s oldest Championship weekend.
The Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation was established in 2004 to fund support services for people affected by breast cancer in the Hudson Valley, NY. The Foundation was started by Dana Effron and Cathy Varunok, two community activists who saw a need for increased services for people with breast cancer.
For years, Dana and Cathy raised money for national breast cancer organizations but in 2004 they decided to focus their fundraising efforts on helping their friends and neighbors in the eight counties of the Hudson Valley, New York.
For years, Allison Ricci has raced to raise money for this charity, donning a pink paint scheme on her no.55 Dirt Modified. Through donations, race winnings and merch sales, Allison was able to raise $8,000 in 2018 to be donated to the charity. Being one of few women in her sport, Allison serves as a role model to so many young women. Her role model status and popularity have made her the perfect ambassador for breast cancer awareness in the sport of dirt racing and has enabled her to raise money for this cause.
Special thanks also to driver Bobby Varin, who donated his winnings from a feature win at Fonda Speedway.
Read more over at The 4WIDE
Stewart Friesen is hot off a 4th place finish in the last NCWTS race of the series in Homestead -Miami and and a big $40,000 victory in the Eastern States 200 at Orange County Fair Speedway in New York. Friesen, the five-time winner of the prestigious Super DIRT Week Big-Block Modified race is a certified dirt racing phenom, who just had his first full season racing on asphalt with the NCWTS, resulting in a playoffs run. Also new to Friesen in 2018 was a few runs on asphalt in a Super Late Model, with which he placed 2nd in the US Short Track Nationals at Bristol.
Friesen’s Super Late Model pays homage to the great Gary Balough, a friend and mentor of Friesen’s. Balough was known for what Friesen now attempts, a successful career racing on dirt and asphalt. Balough’s famous gold and red on black color scheme, no.112 debuted at Super DIRT Week in 1980 as a modified that would shake up the sport of dirt racing. Affectionately nicknamed “The Batmobile” this car’s number and paint scheme would be reused by Balough throughout his career racing on dirt and asphalt in Super Late Models. Now, with the sagely guidance of Balough, Stewart Friesen pilots the black no. 112 Halmar Super Late Model.
The Snowball Derby will mark Friesen’s third time behind the wheel of the 112. In his first two SLM attempts, Friesen managed 2nd place finishes. With more NCWTS races under his belt since, Friesen heads to 5 Flags Speedway with some serious street cred for asphalt racing. Though Gary Balough will not be present due to recent health issues, Friesen and his team are ready to park it in victory lane in his honor.
The 51st Annual Snowball Derby starts Wednesday November 28 and goes through December 2nd at 5 Flags Speedway in Pensacola FL.
Going into Bristol, Stewart Friesen was just outside being on the bubble for making the NCWTS playoffs. If the race were to be won by a driver with no other wins, Friesen and Matt Crafton would have had to compete for the final 8th spot. 19 points were needed by Friesen to finish ahead of Crafton to clinch it. With Sauter taking first, both Friesen and Crafton would secure their playoff positions.
In the final 20 laps of the race, Friesen was able to reach front runners Nemechek and Sauter who were caught up in lapped traffic. With just 5 laps remaining, Sauter and Friesen were able to pass the no.8 of Nemechek. Running out of laps, Friesen pushed for the lead but was unable to steal it away from Sauter, ultimately finishing just 2 tenths of a second behind 2016’s points champion.
HFR fans have been waiting on the edges of their seats for a Friesen win and came as close as ever last night. Despite their disappointment, Friesen has officially made the playoffs and is in contention for the championship in only his second full-time NCWTS season. Asked about winning, Friesen said “Wins will come, but battling for wins is all you can ask for, and that’s what we’re doing as a race team.”
Next week, Stewart Friesen heads to his home country turf at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park for the Chevrolet Silverado 250.
By FRANK CATIZONE
MIDDLETOWN, NY – Stewart Friesen is sizzling at the Orange County Fair Speedway.
Since last season’s Eastern States Weekend Racing Festival, Friesen has been nearly unbeatable at the historic racing facility – winning five of the last six races he’s competed in – including last Thursday night’s inaugural Battle of the Midway 100.
The event, which was recently added to the 2018 Super DIRTcar Modified Series, earned Friesen his third OCFS feature victory in as many attempts during the racing campaign and a whopping first-place prize of $10,000. Friesen won two long-distance races during Eastern States Weekend a year ago before settling for a second-place finish to Brett Hearn in the Eastern States 200.
Friesen also picked up his third triumph on the Super DIRTcar tour this season to deadlock Matt Sheppard for the most wins in 2018. However, Sheppard has a decisive lead in the standings after 12 events as he attempts to defend his championship.
Friesen, who is running a limited schedule this season because of his commitment to the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series, has now notched six career wins at OCFS. He captured his second Hard Clay Open 50-lapper and a regular-season 30-lapper earlier in the year.
However, prior to his recent hot streak, Friesen has also found the going rough at the track. He was winless in 2016 as a weekly competitor before breaking through with his only Eastern States 200 victory later that season. His initial OCFS Modified win came in the 2015 Hard Clay Open.
Friesen showed he was going to be a factor from the get go as he turned in the second quickest lap during the time trial sessions with a clocking of 21.119 seconds – an average speed of 106.539 seconds around the five-eighths mile, hard clay oval.
Friesen, who won the second qualifying heat, drew sixth position for the 100-lap grind as the top three finishers from four heats picked for the top 12 positions. Tim Fuller grabbed the pole and appeared to be the driver to beat in the early going.
Story By: ERNIE SAXTON / GRANDVIEW SPEEDWAY – BECHTELSVILLE, PA – Mother Nature finally cooperated with the racing community on Saturday night and produced beautiful weather and the 56th racing season at Grandview Speedway got underway in front of a very large turnout of fans. Close to 50 small and big block Modifieds lined the pits to participate in the events leading up to the first annual Bruce Rogers Memorial Money Maker 50-lap race sponsored by VP Racing Fuels. The race was run in honor of the late Bruce Rogers, who passed away last March. Bruce, along with his father Forrest, built the track close to 60 years ago.
Three laps shy of a victory in the prestigious memorial event, Stewart Friesen wrestled the lead away from Mike Gular as the front runners had to deal with lapped traffic. Friesen held on and went on to collect the $7,500 top prize money along with beautiful hardware signifying the victory. In 2014 Friesen, now a regular in NASCAR Camping World Truck Series competition, won the season opener along with the rich Freedom 76 Classic.
Kevin Hirthler, doing double duty in the Modified and Sportsman divisions, took the lead when leader Ryan Lilick dropped out of action and chalked up the victory in the 25-lap Sportsman feature.
Through a heads-up draw, Don Norris Jr., returning to action after a year hiatus, started on the pole in the 50-lap Memorial feature, but it was second-place starter Tim Buckwalter that took the early lead and Gular followed through for second.
Buckwalter and Gular were bumper to bumper for several laps while back further Norris Jr., Friesen and Jordan Henn diced for positions.
Gular dove underneath Buckwalter for the lead along the homestretch on the 12th lap and heading down the backstretch Buckwalter pulled into the infield out of contention.
With 15 laps in the books Gular, Norris Jr., Friesen, Craig Von Dohren and Matt Sheppard, the third, first, fourth, 12th and sixth-place starters continued to hold down one through five as they encountered slower moving traffic that were also racing for positions.
Kevin Hirthler, who had just broken into the top ten, spun in the fourth turn on the 22nd lap and went pit side. Gular held his line on the restart, but Friesen was right there leaving him no room to slip-up and Friesen knew Von Dohren was pressuring him too.
Sheppard’s solid fourth place run ended on the 24th lap with a right rear flat tire. After a pit stop he rejoined the pack, but was only able to get back to 11th until the end.
At the half-way marker Gular, Friesen and Von Dohren, who all ran the top lane; Watt and Frank Cozze completed the top five.
In the final stages of the event, lap cars hampered the front runners and Friesen had a full head of steam built up even though he abused his tires and was coming on strong as it appeared Gular was having problems getting through turns one and two.
On the 47th lap, three short of a victory for Gular, Friesen passed him. Gular didn’t surrender easily and tried to regain the top spot.
Friesen continued his pace and pulled into the winner’s circle for his third win at the oval followed by Gular, Von Dohren, Watt and Cozze. Rounding out the top ten were Duane Howard, Meme DeSantis, Rick Laubach, Billy Pauch Sr. and Mike Mahaney.
For the first time in 25 years a NASCAR event was postponed due to snow. Despite the frustration it caused, Stewart Friesen and crew powered through it to race on monday morning.
Friesen didn’t have as easy a time as expected on the short track. Despite leading 6 laps to pick up 21 championship points, he was unable to pull off a top 10 finish. It was a long hard battle on a short track for Friesen, who took damage on lap 16, and was later put 2 laps behind for a pit penalty.
A still positive Friesen says “We left Martinsville happy with a solid qualifying effort. After waiting out the snow day on Sunday the Halmar team ultimately had a tough race on Monday. We will use the break until Dover to work on our short track program and clean up our race strategy with the 52 Chevy Silverado. I’m excited to do a bunch of dirt racing with our 44 Halmar Modifieds in the next few weeks.”
With a scheduled month long break in the NCWTS, Friesen will get in some serious seat time with his dirt modified, returning to the northeast.
HRT (Halmar Racing Team) is sending 6 teams to Delaware for the Melvin L. Joseph Memorial Weekend at Georgetown Speedway, March 16-17.
Leading the charge is HFR (Halmar-Friesen Racing) driver Stewart Friesen, fresh off a stage win and top 5 finish at Las Vegas Speedway in the Nascar Camping World Truck Series. Stew will compete in Saturday’s 49-lap, $6,949 to win STSS Modified event and Friday night’s 30-lap, $4,049 small-block main, both in the No.44 Halmar International Car. Over the past 2 years, Friesen has won 3 times at Georgetown.
The defending STSS Modified Melvin L. Joseph event winner, Jimmy Horton, will return in his No.43 Halmar International Car, looking to make it 2 in a row.
Halmar drivers Matt Janiak, Allison Ricci and Tyler Boniface will all make their debuts in Georgetown this year, also competing in the STSS Modified event. Allison and Tyler will be pulling double duty in the small-block event as well.
Halmar’s sixth team in attendance will be that of Danny Morgiwicz, from Goshen, NY, who will be racing in the STSS Crate 602 Sportsman event on Saturday.
For a full list of events and ticket info for the Melvin L. Joseph Memorial Weekend, check out bdmotorsportsmedia.com