The 5th Annual Paul Hubbell Memorial is in the books and what an event it was! With seven teams tackling the Hillclimb for four hours, it was always going to be a true test of drivers and equipment, and with an amazing depth of racing talent it made for an impressive race.

In the first two hour rotation, the shock of the event came in when perennial enduro racers Ron Vincek and Ben Naelitz, running as (due to a miscommunication) Team Paintbomber were sidelines early on with major gear mesh issues. Four spur gears later, they finished the first rotation with only 1,074 laps.

A fun entry was the combination of Dan Halfhill, Haley Halfhill, and Jeffrey Henes. Team Wubalubadubdub (yes, really...) twice had to overcome a spun pinion and once a spun spur which resulted in this local group wrapping the first rotation with 1,173 laps.

One of two sets of visitors, Team Shorts & Flipflops comprised of Rob Voska and Dave "Shadow" Simerka who arrived early to try and get a handle on the tricky 165' track. Their first rotation was a solid showing that finished with 1,186 laps.

The other visiting team was also a strong one, with David Decoster and Bob Foster coming down from Downriver Speedway in Michigan to represent the Michigan Mafia! Starting out drawing white lane put them behind the 8 ball on a new track, but patience paid off for a first rotation total of 1,260 laps.

A late entry, borrowing a car out of Dad's box after hemming and hawing about running, was Manta Racing. Sean and Gary Sutorius ran a smooth first rotation, getting used to their borrowed equipment and coming up with a first rotation total of 1,304 laps.

Team Slick in the Slot was one of the heavy favorites with their fast and experience laden lineup of Bud Bartos, Gil Pataky, and Steve Koepp. They put that experience to work, too, and brought in 1,379 laps in the first segment.

The other heavy favorite was two of the fastest racers to call Haven home. H&H Racing featured Jeff Henes and Eric Shirey, and they managed to rip off a first rotation total of 1,421 laps even after breaking a guide flag in an early hit.

At the end of the first two hours, it was time for lunch. The cars were placed into impound and sandwiches, brownies, and the all-important cheeseballs were enjoyed by racers who were already eyeing that second half of the race.

Into the second half, no team would get bit harder by bad luck than Team Shorts & Flipflops. With a collapsing body and undergoing multiple motor swaps, they lost a large amount of track time and were only able to run 1,058 laps in the second half.

Team Wubalubadubdub improved on their initial run, but developing handling issues and a broken rear wing meant that their second half total was still only 1,202 laps.

Add Manta Racing to the list of teams fighting with damaged bodies. Their Peugeot body ended up more tape than lexan by the event's end, but they still persevered to bring home 1,240 laps in the second rotation.

The Michigan Mafia continued their steady race and improved by 37 laps in the second half, bringing home 1,297 laps and putting themselves into contention.

Team Slick in the Slot seemed to lose a little pace as the race wore on, but these veterans remained highly consistent, only running 16 fewer laps than their first half, and wrapping up the second half with 1,363 laps.

H&H Racing also slipped slightly in their total, running 15 fewer laps in the second half than in the first. Their fast pace still was hard to deny as they came home with 1,406 laps in the second half.

Team Paintbomber scored a moral victory in the second half after sorting out their gear issues. Their 1,406 laps in the second half was a fantastic run that made up for the heartbreak of the early gear issues and left the question of what could have been on the table.

But the race was run and when the totals were added up, including panels, there was no questioning it. Running a fast and consistent race, H&H Racing pulled off the win for the 5th annual Hubbell Memorial! Team Slick in the Slot came home second, and the Michigan Mafia claimed a deserved third place!

Finishing totals...
H&H Racing: 2,827 laps
Team Slick in the Slot: 2,743 laps
Michigan Mafia: 2,557 laps
Manta Racing: 2,544 laps
Team Paintbomber: 2,480 laps
Team Wubalubadubdub: 2,376 laps
Team Shorts & Flipflops: 2,244 laps

We truly cannot wait for next year's event. It is and always will be an honor to celebrate the hobby and the man who worked so hard for so many years to ensure the hobby's place in our town. Thank you to all the racers and most of all, thank you to Paul Hubbell.

Paul Hubbell Memorial Enduro
4 Hour Enduro for Ohio Challenge Cup GT1's
165' Ogilvie Hillclimb
16 heats, 15 minutes each
9/9/17
Haven Raceway and Hobby
442 Cleveland St, Elyria OH 44035