Some nights, the re draw just works out this way. Another night of fab four action at Don Martin’s Lernerville speedway saw some heavy hitters start up front, and while it can make for great action on the occasions when that happens. The conditions that provided a very slick but yet very smooth racing surface perhaps took a little edge off the anticipation in some respects.
But when the likes of Ferree, King, King Jr, and Lynch draw near the front in for feature starting spots, good theater still exists when you really watch the battles behind them.
Let’s get to the action.
|Jim Fosnaught describes his second win of the season with announcer Dow Carhahan|
It was the race that wasn’t quite sure it wanted to start, but when it did, it gave some of the best action of the night. The opening lap took three laps to get in the books as an assortment of cautions on the multiple green flag drops. But when they finally got underway for good, it was Mark Sanders in front early on while being chased by last week’s winner Chris Schneider in the #19 machine and Jim Fosnaught. Title contender Corey McPherson suffered a flat tire very early in the race and didn’t factor into the mix up front.
Schneider took the lead from Sanders on lap two and once behind both front runners, Sanders and Pat Hanley waged a terrific battle for the third spot that lasted the entire race. Schneider got comfortable in the lead for a handful of laps, but lurking right behind was Fosnaught who used the low groove to perfection. Fosnaught crept up patiently and took the lead from Schneider on lap 10 as Schneider did his best to use any momentum from the top side that he could find.
Schneider got the lead back momentarily following a lap 13 restart, but Fosnaught got it back a lap later and survived a restart on lap 17 to take home a hard earned victory, his second of the season.
“I just had to stay patient tonight” Fosnaught said. “The track was obviously very slick and I knew the bottom was where the traction was. I was barely on the throttle because it was so slick. I had to watch Chris Schneider because he’s a heck of a driver and I know he likes the high side but I knew if I could tuck underneath him I could probably keep him at bay.”
With the win, Fosnaught now finds himself in the lead of the sportsman stock point standings.
1. Jim Fosnaught
2. Chris Schneider
3. Pat Hanley
4. Mark Sanders
5. Rob Shook
6. Bob Egley
7. Corey McPherson
8. Brett McDonald
9. Terry Young
10. Mike Miller
Alex Ferree would not and could not be caught tonight, despite the best efforts of a hard charging Mike Pegher Jr, a second starting Russ King, and a surprise visitor in Morgan Bagley. The Kilgore, TX native and current tour driver on the World of Outlaw Late Model tour stopped by looking for a little extra seat time in preparation for June’s Firecracker 100.
But the locals on their home track proved too much for Bagley to get around Friday night, though he tried his best, moving from his 8th starting spot to 4th in just a handful of laps. As we said earlier though, Ferree was in another world and during the longer green flag stretches of the feature would work all three grooves while stretching his lead to over three seconds at times. It was Ferree’s second win of the season.
“That track was just so slick and so smooth tonight” Ferree said. ” I started to get a little bit tight in the middle, so I went down low and that wasn’t the answer and actually made it worse. So I had to pick up the pace a little towards the end.”
Currently, it looks as if Ferree and King might just have the battle to watch as far as the season points pan out as just a mere three points separate the two competitors.
1. Alex Ferree
2. Russ King
3. Morgan Bagley
4. Mike Pegher Jr
5. Michael Norris
6. Jared Miley
7. John Garvin Jr
8. Kenny Schaltenbrand
9. Dave Murdick
10 Garrett Krummert
As easy as Ferree made it look in the late models, King Jr was well on his way to doing so in the modifieds. Pole sitter Rex King Jr took off from the green flag like he’d been shot out of a cannon compared to the rest of the field and dominated early on during Friday’s modified feature. But behind him, the previous week’s winner Mat Williamson chipped away lap by lap. The St Catherines, Ontario driver started 10th and on such a slick surface it seemed like it would be a chore for him to find his way to the podium on this night.
A lap 9 restart saw the field bunch up one more time, but King Jr got away again en route to his second win of the season. Williamson made it interesting though, shaving four second lead to less than half a second in the last handful of laps and even drew close enough to make slight bumper contact with King Jr in the last set of turns.
Dave Murdick brought out an older piece and it worked like a charm as he moved his way through the field for a hard fought third place finish, while perennial favorite Brian Swartzlander actually faded from his front row starting spot ending up in seventh.
King Jr and Sr sit firmly in the top two spots in the season standings with Murdick and a very consistent Brad Rapp still within reasonable striking distance.
1. Rex King Jr
2. Mat Williamson
3. Dave Murdick
4. Rex King Sr
5. Brad Rapp
6. Jeremiah Shingledecker
7. Brian Swartzlander
8. Mike Turner
9. Ralph McBride
10. Rodney Beltz
Former sprint champion Eric “Turkey” Williams has had a tough start to the season and was most likely thrilled to find himself on the pole of Friday’s sprint feature. He was probably thrilled until he saw who was lined up next to him on the front row.
That would be Ed Lynch Jr, who now has 108 sprint feature wins at the action track. But Williams threw everything but the kitchen sink at Lynch in order to snag his first feature win of the season.
Williams drove away early on, working especially well down low while Lynch worked the top shelf. And while Lynch whittled away at Williams’ lead, the race still looked like one that Williams could hold onto until a lap 14 caution for Mike Miller bunched the field back up.
On the ensuing restart, Lynch looked for one Williams slip and got it on lap 15 as he executed a hi/lo switch to perfection, taking the bottom away from Williams. It looked as if Lynch was on his way to checking out, but in lapped traffic towards the last final laps, Williams krept up on Lynch using every part of the track that he could find. But Lynch kept his cool and patiently weaved his way though to the victory.
Carl Bowser and Jack Sodeman Jr charged from deeper starting positions to earn third and fourth respectively while rookie AJ Flick continued to impress, driving from the back of the field to a respectable 9th place.
“Yeah, we always get a reaction here” said Lynch Jr responding to a chorus of cheers and boos from fans in attendance. ” It was a pretty tricky track tonight; I think lapped traffic really helped me out at the end there. Sometimes it’s better to be second in those situations, but the car worked well tonight and we shook down a few things getting ready for the Silver Cup.”
1. Ed Lynch Jr
2. Eric Williams
3. Carl Bowser
4. Jack Sodeman Jr
5. Brandon Matus
6. Dan Shetler
7. Mike Lutz
8. Brent Matus
9. AJ Flick
10. Scott Priester
For Full Results you can check out Lernerville Quick Result Page