BECHTELSVILLE, PA Ma Nature did her best to stop all the feature racing action at Grandview Speedway on Saturday night but after a 2 and ½ hour rain delay Kevin Hirthler was able to drive the Green Lane Wm. Penn/ Four Star Lettering No. 117 to victory in the prestigious 50-lap Forrest Rogers Memorial presented by Pioneer Pole Buildings. The victory was worth $20,000 to the veteran racer along with lap money.
Unfortunately, despite the outstanding efforts of the track crew, the Late Model and Sportsman features were not able to be run due to the lateness of the hour and have been rescheduled. The Late Models will run their rained out feature as part of the Saturday, August 18th Hatfield Quality Meats show that will also feature a full show of NASCAR 358 Modifieds, Late Models and Sportsman with a 7:30 p.m. starting time. The rained out Sportsman feature will be part of the Saturday, August 25th tripleheader sponsored by Kauffman’s BBQ Chicken.
Ron Seltman put his No. R19 Modified in front of the 31-car starting field at the drop of the green for the NASCAR 358 Modifieds and set the pace for the first six laps being challenged by former URC sprint racer Jason Clauss. A couple wrecks changed things around and on the seventh circuit of the one-third-mile, clay oval Kevin Hirthler charged to the front on a restart after a caution.
Hirthler had Seltman as a challenger for much of the first 30 laps. A series of accidents brought on a number of cautions that changed the top five in the standings but Hirthler still had control.
With 30 laps in the record book officials call the race to a stop for a fuel stop. During the stop Hirthler exited his race car to have a discussion with challenger Seltman and on the restart there were new challengers nipping at Hirthler’s rear.
Doug Manmiller had charged up to second spot and looked as if he had something for the leader even pulling up along side Hirthler a couple of times but not able to complete the pass.
At the finish Hirthler had a narrow margin of victory over Man miller (Shoemakerville) while Duane Howard (Oley) continues to be the point leader in the NASCAR 358 Modified point battle with a strong third place effort. Craig VonDohren (Boyertown) came home fourth followed by nine time track champion Jeff Strunk (Pottstown).
The Bobby Gunther Walsh and Sponsors Hard Charger Award, worth $100, went to Jon Kellner Sr. for charging from 29th starting spot to finish 13th.
T.P. Trailers of Limerick, PA had a $250 bonus for Hirthler’s winning effort. In addition the Boyertown racer racked up a few hundred dollars in lap prize money during the course of his run to victory.
Hirthler also earned the Dan’s Deli Halfway Leader Award for being in front of the feature field with half the race completed.
Qualifying heat races for the Late Models went to Wayne Pfeil and Kory Fleming. The eight lap qualifiers for the Sportsman went to Guy Germano, Steve Searock and John Kovatch IV. The Sportsman consolation was won by Mike Glass.
In the qualifying races for the NASCAR 358 Modifieds, each 12 laps, the wins went to Ryan Grim, Craig VonDohren, Kevin Hirthler, Jon Kellner Jr. and Mike Laise. The three consolations for the Modifieds, more than 50 of them on hand, went to Rick Laubach, Billy Pauch Sr. and Kyle Follweiler.
NASCAR sanctioned stock car racing returns to Grandview Speedway on Saturday, August 18th, 7:30 p.m. with the running of Hatfield Quality Meats Night featuring the 358 Modifieds, Late Models and Sportsman. The Late Models will run their rained out feature from August 11th plus their regular feature event.
Admission for regular Saturday night stock car racing events is $15 for adults, youngsters 12 and under are admitted free.
Grandview Speedway, a NASCAR sanctioned one-third-mile, banked clay track, is located at 43 Passmore Road, Bechtelsville, PA, just off Route 100, 10 miles north of Pottstown. For race information telephone 610.754.7688 or check in at www.grandviewspeedway.com
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