Meridian Speedway Celebrated 2015 Season, Driver of the Year, Zach Blume

Meridian Speedway Celebrated 2015 Season, Driver of the Year, Zach Blume

Meridian Speedway Celebrated 2015 Season, Driver of the Year, Zach Blume

October 31, 2015 – Nampa, ID – The Western Idaho Racing Association (WIRA) presented the Annual Meridian Speedway Awards Banquet Friday, October 30th at the Nampa Civic Center in Nampa, Idaho.

 Over 350 drivers, family, officials and crew members attend this year’s Award Banquet

Over 350 drivers, family, officials and crew members attend this year’s Award Banquet

WIRA President, Ryan Bailey welcomed over 350 drivers, family members, crews and speedway officials to the event at 7 pm. Arte introduce Track Chaplin Mark “Tiger” James from Racers from Christ, to give the invocation before dinner.

Several individuals were recognized for their accomplishments over in the sport.

Shane Harris (Jr Stinger) and Alex Hibbert (HS Tuner) were named Most Improved Younger Drivers of the year in an award sponsored by Pat and Heather Stirm.

Todd LaBronte inducted Both Darren Peterson and Pat Russell into the WIRA Hall of Fame.

Peterson is in charge of the Speedway’s Carl’s Cycle Safety Crew. He started with the Ambulance and Safety crew in the late 70’s and it has been well over 30 years since he has missed a race. His crew is recognized as one of the best in the Northwest.

Pat Russell has been a long time owner of Super Modiefed and Sprint Cars for 30 + years. He has earned Championships as an owner in Local and touring series with the Super Modifieds and Sprint Cars. Willie Ranson, Ken and Davey Hamilton, and Rick Veenstra are just a few of the legendary drivers who have driven for Pat. Bryan Warf currently drives the 91 Winged Sprint Car and has won the last 3 Winged Sprint Car Championships at Meridian Speedway.

Bill Adams, Xtreme Photo, sponsors and presented the Driver of the Year Award. This award recognizes a driver who has a competitive drive but does not let that drive interfere with their spirit of racing or their attitude towards their fellow competitors or officials. In addition this individual is a great ambassador to the sport always displaying a positive attitude and enthusiastic spirit when talking with fans, media and supporters of all competitors and facilities.

Adams stated, “As I was typing up this narrative [for this year’s award] I realized that the words described a special person in our community although this individual did not drive he embodied the drive, spirit and attitude that this award honors. With permission of the family this award will now be known as the Rick Elliot Driver of the Year.”

This year’s recipient, Zach Blume, started Racing outlaw Karts at age 6. “Even as a young driver and a young man, he overpowers us with maturity and respect.  In five short seasons behind the wheel of a very fast legends car, he has been a consistent finisher, battling for Championships, and even when he comes up short, still is smiling and happy to just be competing in this great sport that we all love.”

In addition to the top 10 in each division receiving an award specialty awards were also handed out in most divisions. Rookie honors went to the highest finishing Rookie in the final points standings of the year. Prior to the conclusion of the season drivers were given ballots to vote on the following for their respective division, Mechanic, Hard Luck and Sportsman, The following were honored in their respective Divisions.

Jr Stingers were up first. Aaron Harris was named Mechanic, Hard Luck went to Evan Brown and Noah Capps was named Sportsman. The Top 10: Taylor Occhipinti, Evan Brown,D.J. Sirani, Noah Capps, Shane Harris, Austin Wiederich, Bryce Edwards, Caitlin Sharp, Adalin Sharp

In the CWI High School Tuner division Larry Hull was named Mechanic, Tayvia Morris was given the Hard Luck Award and Katie Lober was named Sportsman. The Top 10:  Kendra Occhipinti, Jordan Harris, C.J. Stirm, Peter Woog, Connor Woog, Alex Hibbert, Daytona Wurtz, Tayvia Morris, Bethany Harrod, Katie Lober.

The Claimer Stocks were up next with Tim Shelton receiving the Rookie of the Year, Dean Wilson honored as mechanic, Fred Nagele receiving the Hard Luck award and Casey Hart named Sportsman. The Top 10:

Casey Hart, Tim Shelton (R), J.D. Ford (R), Ben Crow (R), Josh Hale, Tommy Kirkland, Ray Otis, Fred Nagele (R), Jason Reed (R), Tyler Barrow.

The Tates Hornets special honors went to Ron Compton, Rookie and Mechanic, Maverik received the Hard Luck Award and DJ Everett was named Sportsman. The Top 10: D.J. Everett, Bill Allen, Sean Young, Ron Compton (R), Tommy Harrod, Kenny Driebergen, C.J. Stirm (R), Rob Sturman (R), Monica Heath, Larry Englehardt .

In the Domino’s Legends division Daytona Wurtz was Rookie of the year as well as the Jr. Legend Champion, Trevor Cristiani received mechanic and Casey Tillman Sportsman. The Top 10: Casey Tillman,

Zach Blume, Peyton Saxton, Chance Davis, Darin Turpen, Johnethen Davis, Ethan Jones, Ken Frickey, Trevor Cristiani, Jamie Hyde .

Mike Vester earned Rookie of the Year in the Kendall Ford Mini Stocks, while Donavon Parker was named Mechanic, Michael Capps Hard Luck and Travis Pavlacky received Sportsman. The Top 10:

Scott Shoecraft, Travis Pavlacky, Jason Sanders, Brandon Hild, Richard Brees, Jayson Wardle, Mike Davis, Alex Duda, Pat McGuire, Mike Vester (R).

The CWI Street Stocks were next with Tim Shelton earning Rookie honors, Marv Weaver was named Mechanic, Jeff Meads received the Hard Luck Award and Daniel Johnson was named Sportsman. The Top 10: Melissa Weaver, Marv Weaver, Shawn Hansen, Daniel Johnson, Micky Lawson, Jeffery Meads, Ben Crow (R), Shaun Bush, Fred Nagele (R), Tony Ackerland.

In the Budweiser Modifieds Robert Rendo earned Rookie, Ken Mills Mechanic. Josh Jackson was given the Hard Luck award and David Wurtz Jr was voted on as Sportsman. The Top 10:    Darvin Ackerland, Randy Keckley, Josh Jackson, Robert Rendo (R), David Wurtz  Jr.(R), Cade Hollon, Willie Ransom, Jordan Kirkland, Gene Stroebel, Scott Gilligan (R).

The Project filter Rookie of the Year was Jonathan Hull, Mechanic Honors went to Jewels Rose, Ken Chandler received Hard Luck and Wes Summers was the Sportsman. The Top 10: Larry Hull III, Brendon Fries, Ryan Bailey, Kenny Chandler, Joe Barton, Jonathan Hull (R), Wes Summers (R), Ron Hayes, Brandon Shira (R), John Riparetti,

Coors Super Stock honored Jordan Harris as Rookie, Ray Bolinger as Mechanic, Jess Ryska Hard Luck and Gale Carter was Sportsman. The Top 10: Ray Bolinger, Lynn Sharp, Gale Carter, Melissa Weaver, Marv Weaver, Jordan Harris (R), Chad Bess, Daniel Johnson, Shawn Hansen, Micky Lawson.

Brian Newman was Mechanic in the Pepsi Sprint Cars while Drew Crenshaw received Hard Luck and Mike Anderson was named Sportsman. There was no Rookie in the Pepsi Sprint Cars this year. The Top 10: Tony Ackerland, Ryan Newman, Riley Rogers, Ryan Wiederich, Justin Segura, Tyler Barrow, Mike Anderson, Aaron McPeak, Larry Hull III, Jasen Skyberg.

Robert Rendo was the Grand American Modied rookie while Dennis Wurtz Sr .was named Mechanic, Brent Collins Mechanic and Pete Trammell Sportsman. The Top 10: Dennis Wurtz, Josh Jackson, Brent Collins , Rick Fowble, Shelby Stroebel, Jay Cook, Kyle Latham, Darvin Ackerland, Caitlin Stroebel, Randy Keckley.

LaMoyne Warf was named Mechanic in the Mountain Dew Winged Sprint Car division while Ryan Newman received the Hard Luck and Colton Nelson received Sportsman. The Top 10: Bryan Warf, Colton Nelson, Matt Hein, Andy Alberding, Chris Ratterree, Matt Elliott, Matt Mansell, Scott Aumen, Casey Tillman, Ryan Newman.

CT 400 Winged Sprint Car Top Finishers: Chris Ratterree, Casey Tillman, Jasen Skyberg, Colton Nelson.

Vintage Winged Sprint Car Top Finishers: Walt Calkins, Brad Hunziker, Dean Waltman, Lonnie Gotschall, Jimmy Hamilton, Willie Ransom.

The NAPA Big 5 Late Model Rookie was Stafford Smith, Mechanic honors went to Danny Cristiani, Tyler Monroe received the Hard Luck Award and Justin Ellis was the Sportsman. The Top 10: Dennis Wurtz, Trevor Cristiani, Chris Fenton, Tyler Bailey, Hannah Newhouse, Tyler Marston, Justin Ellis, Travis Anderson, Tyler Monroe, Stafford Smith (R).

Ryan Baily closed out the night just before 11 pm thanking all those involved in making the banquet a success and hopes to see everybody at the races next year.

Stay tuned to over the winter for updates on the 2016 season.