OPENING NIGHT FEATURE RACES WON BY CANADIAN STEWART FRIESEN, BRETT KESSLEY AND SEAN MERKEL AT GRANDVIEW SPEEDWAY

BECHTELSVILLE,
PA ~ Canadian invader Stewart Friesen clicked off his first career
30-lap regular season NASCAR 358 Modified victory at Grandview Speedway on a
brutally cold Saturday night, while young Brett Kressley of Orefield, PA picked
up where he left off last season, claiming another win in the 25-lap NASCAR
Sportsman main event, and Sean Merkel of Boyertown, PA was the winner in a wild
25-lap NASCAR Late Model feature on the 52nd consecutive Opening Night at the
Bechtelsville, PA based dirt raceway.

In
spite of the very chilly weather, a good crowd was on hand to watch some
fan-pleasing competition, with more than 80 race cars taking part in qualifying
sessions. Since it was the first race of the year, all feature events started
heads-up, as they qualified in their earlier qualifying heat
races.

The
opening night race served as a tune-up for the NASCAR 358 Modifieds as they race
in twin 20-lap feature races on Saturday night starting at 7 p.m. Late Models
and Sportsman will also be in action. Adult admission is $20 while youngsters 12
and under pay just $5.

In
the NASCAR 358 Modified main, Stewart Friesen took the green from the pole after
winning his heat race steering a No. 357 mount owned by Norm Hansell and the
popular driver immediately pulled away. A quick caution on lap three closed the
field up again.

Friesen
immediately reclaimed the top spot with the new green on lap four over Justin
Grim, who started from fourth-place in the 28-car starting field. Meme DeSantis
started sixth and was already up to third at this point, with third-place
starter Craig VonDohren running in fourth. A caution on lap six closed up the
field again and another yellow on lap 10 tightened the field up as
well.

A
new green saw Friesen back out in front for lap 11 over DeSantis and the No. 1C
driven by VonDohren. At halfway VonDohren slipped by DeSantis to steal the
runner-up spot, dropping DeSantis to third with 15 in the record books. A
caution again appeared after lap 15 when nine-time division champion Jeff Strunk
headed to the pit area with his second left front flat of the
event.

Again
it was Friesen, VonDohren and, now, Duane Howard, the fifth-place starter with
the Petruska No. 66 machine, vaulting into third, as DeSantis dropped to fourth
for lap 16. With nine tours remaining Jon Kellner