Speedway family pulls together Saturday to help racer recover from crash

Speedway family pulls together Saturday to help racer recover from crash

by Jon Brown, MERIDIAN, Idaho – Fans and friends alike see Jeff Russell as one of a kind. As it turns out, the Idaho racecar driver was just that whenever he

Jeff Russell with Adam Nelson, 2010

climbed into a Super Modified.
The Jeff Russell Road to Recovery Benefit Night at ASA-sanctioned Meridian Speedway was supposed to have a Super Modified exhibition race to pay tribute to Russell. He continues to fight back from a horrific Super Modified crash in Las Vegas in October 2010.
Alas, it turns out that not only is Russell one of a kind, but he’s one of the last Super Modified racers.
The exhibition of the ultra-fast open-wheel cars, set for Saturday, Aug. 25, has been cancelled because of the decline in available cars in the Pacific Northwest.
The benefit, however, will go on as planned with a silent auction and plenty of racing in several other divisions.
Because the Super Modified show has been cancelled, prices have been reduced to regular-night admission rates, including $10 for adults, $7.50 for senior citizens and military personnel with ID and $6 for children 7-11. As usual, children ages 6-11 get in free.
A portion of the proceeds from the night will go to the Jeff Russell Road to Recovery Benefit Fund, as was the case with last year’s inaugural event.
There also will be a raffle with several prizes and a silent auction for a set of four passes to the NASCAR race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in March.
Raffle prizes include an autographed photo provided by Andretti Motorsports, autographed items from Idaho Indianapolis 500 veteran Davey Hamilton, tickets and Roaring Springs and Boise State sporting events and dinners at local restaurants.
T-shirts and stickers to support the Jeff Russell Road to Recovery also will be sold.
Races on tap Saturday include ASA Super Trucks, Pepsi Sprintcars, B Modifieds, Tates Hornets and the SPI Transportation Super Sixes.
Russell won many features and was a top championship contender in the Super Sixes division before moving on to the Super Modifieds.
“The Super Six club of drivers is excited to be able to contribute on this benefit night,” Meridian Speedway managing partner Adam Nelson said.
So some of Russell’s fellow competitors will be out in force even if the Super Modifieds won’t be on the track.
One of the remaining Boise-based Super Modified teams is the No. 91 car driven by Bryan Warf. Pat Russell owns the car, and Bryan’s father, Lamoyne Warf, serves as crew chief.
“They had planned to make the event on Jeff’s behalf and are disappointed that the other cars aren’t going to be available,” Nelson said.
There are multiple reasons for the decline in the car counts of Super Modifieds, Nelson said.
“The expense and expertise needed to field and maintain one of these ultimate racing machines have in part led to their decline,” he said.
Nelson said that there was hope that as many as six Super Modified drivers from California would make the trip for the Russell benefit night. However, the Super Modified tour based in that region has all but folded and only one track in the state still holds contests for the roaring machines.
“Jeff’s crash in his Super Modified in Las Vegas was, now in hindsight, one of the last organized touring events for the famed Super Modifieds,” Nelson said.
While the Super Modifieds won’t run, the rest of the night’s division will speed around the quarter-mile paved oval as planned.
Fans can send good wishes and show their support at ofracing.com, which is the website for Jeff’s Out Front Racing team.
For more information on the speedway, including buying tickets, visit www.meridianspeedway.com. More information is available by calling the track at (208) 888-2813 .

Meridian Speedway
Meridian, ID
2012 points standings
(Through Aug. 11 races)
Pepsi Sprintcars — 1. Casey Tillman, Kuna, ID, 425 points; 2. Josh Allen, Meridian, ID, 414; 3. Jamie Ransom, Meridian, ID, 412; 4. Erik Miller, Caldwell, ID, 350; 5. Michael Anderson, Nampa, ID, 278; 6. Tristen Spiers, Adrian, OR, 268; 7. Ryan Wiederich, Nampa, ID, 267; 8. Cody Huddleston, Meridian, ID, 265; 9. Colton Nelson, Meridian, ID, 103
ASA Modifieds — 1. Shelby Stroebel, Meridian, ID, 967 points; 2. Rus Ward, Boise, ID, 747; 3. Jentry Pisca, Nampa, ID, 533; 4. Josh Jackson, Payette, ID, 472; 5. Tim Elam, Boise, ID, 434; 6. Wes Pogue, Star, ID, 391; 7. Caitlin Stroebel, Meridian, ID, 337; 8. Randy Keckley, Boise, ID, 333; 9. Charlie Ham Jr., Kuna, ID, 267; 10. Travis Pavlacky, Fruitland, ID, 256
Mtn. Dew Winged Sprints — 1. Johnny Giesler, Meridian, ID, 444 points; 2. Mike Murgoitio, Meridian, ID, 428; 3. Sierra Jackson, Middleton, ID, 316; 4. Bryan Warf, Meridian, ID, 301; 5. Cody Veenstra, Meridian, ID, 255; 6. Sara Henry, Nampa, ID, 254; 7. Ryan Burdett, West Jordan, UT, 227; 8. Wyatt King, Meridian, ID, 191; 9. Jeff Montgomery, Langford, British Columbia, 179; 10. Matt Elliott, Caldwell, ID, 141
NAPA Late Models — 1. Dylan Caldwell, Nampa, ID, 585 points; 2. Chris Fenton, Meridian, ID, 521; 3. Travis Anderson, Boise, ID, 452; 4. Dan Lowther, Boise, ID, 416; 5. Tyler Monroe, Meridian, ID, 312; 6. Dennis Wurtz II, Kuna, ID, 295; 7. Dave Thomasson, Meridian, ID, 284; 8. Jeff Wilson, Mountain Home, ID, 199; 9. Rob Powers, Meridian, ID, 194; 10. Kim Bradford, Eagle, ID, 100
Project Filter Pro-4s — 1. Jim Bailey, Middleton, ID, 499 points; 2. Phil Dugan, Meridian, ID, 402; 3. Jordan Fitch, Meridian, ID, 335; 4. Joe Barton, Nampa, ID, 306; 5. Ken Chandler, Boise, ID, 235; 6. DJ Lyons, Nampa, ID, 225; 7. Terry Sherman, Boise, ID, 196; 8. Rob Taylor, Meridian, ID, 140; 9. Chet Thorson, Nampa, ID, 122; 10. Rob Bean, Kuna, ID, 117
Pit Stop Drive Thru Super Stocks — 1. Dennis Brodigan, Nampa, ID, 388 points; 2. Kim Bradford, Eagle, ID, 342; 3. Gale Carter, Boise, ID, 337; 4. Justin Ellis, Meridian, ID, 277; 5. Rob Powers, Meridian, ID, 266; 6. David Harris, Meridian, ID, 227; 7. Steven Gilbert, Emmett, ID, 225; 8. Josh Jackson, Payette, ID, 158; 9. Jeff Meads, Boise, ID, 149; 10. Chris Fenton, Meridian, ID, 77
B Modifieds — 1. Jay Cook, Nampa, ID, 360 points; 2. Josh Jackson, Payette, ID, 327; 3. Randy Keckley, Boise, ID, 255; 4. Rosalee Weller, Caldwell, ID, 251; 5. Pete Trammell, Boise, ID, 211; 6. Shelby Stroebel, Meridian, ID, 148; 7. John Hensley, Meridian, ID, 93; 8. Jentry Pisca, Nampa, ID, 75; 9. Caitlyn Stroebel, Meridian, ID, 73; 10. Skip Taylor, Kuna, ID
Street Stocks — 1. Chad Bess, Nampa, ID, 511 points; 2. Melissa Weaver, Nampa, ID, 464; 3. Marv Weaver, Nampa, ID, 461; 4. Roy Kirkland, Boise, ID, 381; 5. Rick Baldwin, Middleton, ID, 350; 6. Bobby Riggs, Fruitland, ID, 297; 7. Micky Lawson, Caldwell, ID, 229; 8. Bill Lawrence, Grand View, ID, 170; 9. John Weller, Caldwell, ID, 169; 10. Daniel Johnson, Caldwell, ID, 147
Pit Stop Drive Thru Mini Stocks — 1. Larry Hull III, Boise, ID, 949 points; 2. Ray Bolinger, Meridian, ID, 935; 3. Sarah Shaw, Boise, ID, 668; 4. Donovan Parker, Garden City, ID, 631; 5. Jonathan Hull, Boise, ID, 542; 6. Brendon Fries, Meridian, ID, 380; 7. Donovan Johns, Boise, ID, 370; 8. Jason Sanders, Caldwell, ID, 356; 9. Colton Nelson, Meridian, ID, 337; 10. Mike Davis, Boise, ID, 326
Domino’s Pizza Legends — 1. Phyl Zubizareta, Boise, ID, 619 points; 2. Chase Gilbertson, Boise, ID, 581; 3. Casey Tillman, Kuna, ID, 542; 4. Zach Blume, Eagle, ID, 421; 5. Jimmy Ingham, Meridian, ID, 333; 6. Mike Cullum, Meridian, ID, 331; 7. Johnathan Davis, Emmett, ID, 311; 8. Sara Henry, Nampa, ID, 306; 9. Steve Thimsen, Boise, ID, 229; 10. Andrew Clark, Boise, ID, 281
Tates Hornets — 1. Colton Nelson, Meridian, ID, 844 points; 2. Thomas Harrod, Nampa, ID, 659; 3. Cody Garrett, Boise, ID, 636; 4. Chuck Youngblood, Meridian, ID, 577; 5. Lynn Sharp, Nampa, ID, 547; 6. Monica Heath, Caldwell, ID, 542; 7. Art Heath, Nampa, ID, 527; 8. Rob Powers, Meridian, ID, 474; 9. Sharlet Pataro, Mountain Home, ID, 440; 10. Al Russell, Kuna, ID, 432
Hornet 100 Series — 1. Colton Nelson, Meridian, ID, 370 points; 2. Chuck Youngblood, Meridian, ID, 273; 3. Thomas Harrod, Nampa, ID, 216; 4. Art Heath, Nampa, ID, 181; 5. Cody Garrett, Boise, ID, 159; 6. Monica Heath, Caldwell, ID, 158; 7. Tony Ryska, Caldwell, ID, 149; 8. Sharlet Pataro, Mountain Home, ID, 147; 9. Stacy Heath, Nampa, ID, 142; 10. Lynn Sharp, Nampa, ID, 122
Thunder Dogs — 1. Sledge Hammer (David Jolley, Nampa, ID), 1,407 points; 2. Bull Dacious (Boise, ID), 926; 3. Big Tuna (Stanley Irons, Boise, ID), 859; 4. The Surfer (Boise, ID), 802; 5. Cat Fish (John Pinkston, Meridian, ID), 776; 6. Boot Legger (James Ward, Meridian, ID; Sean Hackworth, Caldwell, ID), 633; 7. Vulgar Display (Meridian, ID), 447; 8. The Other Woman (Boise, ID), 397; 9. Buzz Lightyear (Richard Scott, Meridian, ID), 267; 10. Bumble Bee (Meridian, ID), 261
Jr. Stingers — 1. Riley Rogers, Meridian, ID, 403 points; 2. Hunter Gates, Nampa, ID, 376; 3. Jordan Kirkland, Boise, ID, 344; 4. Peter Woog, Meridian, ID, 333; 5. Jordan Harris, Nampa, ID, 292; 6. Kendra Occhipinti, Nampa, ID, 256; 7. Daytona Wurtz, Kuna, ID, 227; 8. Eriq Arnold, Star, ID, 214; 9. Ali Norton, Kuna, ID, 203; 10. CJ Stirm, Nampa, ID, 185