BECHTELSVILLE, PA Both Duane Howard and Brian Shuey were able to win their third features in the final NASCAR point events of the season on Saturday night at Grandview Speedway. Howard took the top honors in the 30-lap Green Lane Wm. Penn/Four Star Lettering NASCAR 358 Modified feature while Shuey won the 20-lap NASCAR Late Model feature. Chad Myers was the winner of the 20-lap Sidewinders (1000cc micro sprints) feature.
With a sixth place feature in the Modified feature Jeff Strunk tallied up enough points to win his eighth NASCAR Whelen All American Series 358 Modified feature. Brian Shuey used his win and an eighth place finish of Randy Stoudt, the point leader at the start of the night, to win his second NASCAR Late Model title by just 12 points.
Strunk told the large crowd that winning never gets old; it was awesome to win another title. It was a season when Strunk was able to win a first feature for Vince’s Towing and Recovery, the car owner, and then topped it off with a championship in their first season as a team.
Shuey tried to do some burnouts on the clay oval before entering victory lane and giving thanks to his team for the second championship effort.
Todd Marburger survived a first lap, first turn melee that eliminated Billy Pauch Jr. and Craig VonDohren and set the pace for 13 laps in the NASCAR 358 Modified feature with 28 cars starting the 30-lapper. Troy Wink challenged Marburger for the top spot and they ran side-by-side for a couple of laps before Meme DeSantis was able to charge to the front on the 13th circuit. Duane Howard, coming from 16th starting spot, took advantage of a caution restart with two thirds of the race in the record books and grabbed the lead. Howard, in the BPG Racing/Alex’s Lemonade No. 4, was able to ride to a comfortable win. The Oley racer picked up $2,200 for his win. Meme DeSantis (Temple) grabbed second followed by Ryan Godown (Ringoes), Jason Hamilton (Erwinna) and Keith Brightbill (Reading).
The Late Models also had a multi car accident on the first lap of their 20-lap feature with Nate Christman able to avoid it and take the early lead. Brian Shuey, charging through the pack from ninth starting spot, took the lead at the start of the second half of the race. On the 13th circuit Randy Stoudt, the point leader, spun in the second turn and had to restart at the tail end of the field. Shuey (Shoemakersville) was able to hold on to the top spot to grab the win. Rookie Nate Christman (Oley) finished second followed by Danny Snyder (East Greenville), Chuck Schutz (Pottstown) and Kyle Merkel (Gilbertsville).
Randy Stoudt was unable to regain enough positions to hold on to the point lead losing out on his opportunity to win his second championship.
Rich Halter led the first half of the 20-lapper for the Sidewinders in their first Saturday night appearance at Grandview. Chad Myers (Fayetteville, PA) worked the outside to his advantage to grab the lead at the start of the second half of the race and went on to win with Mike Kiser closing quickly at the finish. Third was Rich Halter followed by Mike Pychinka and Scott Goodrich.
Qualifying heats for the Modifieds were won by Ryan Beltz, John Tschudy, Mike Gular and Tom Umbenhauer while Craig VonDohren and Keith Brightbill won the consolation races. In the Late Models Chuck Schutz, Brian Shuey and Danny Snyder were winners. Mark Strickler, Aaron Spahr and Jesse Snyder won the qualifiers for the Sidewinders.
The Cornerstone Auto Sales Hard Charger Awards went to John Willman in the Modifieds and Chuck Schutz in the Late Models. Willman gained 20 spots while Schutz moved up 14 positions. The Cargo Trailer Sales 10th place award was earned by Troy Wink in the Modifieds and Rick Todorow in the Late Models. Dan’s Deli Halfway Leader Awards were presented to Meme DeSantis in the Modifieds while Nate Christman was the recipient in the Late Models.
Coming on Saturday, September 12th, 7 p.m. is the BPG Racing Freedom 76 Classic featuring many of the top area dirt track modified racers. The race pays $20,000 to win plus more than $1000 in lap money. Also included is the LineX of Lehigh Valley Freedom Fest giving fans an opportunity to participate in the dunk tank, driver interviews, autograph sessions and photo opportunities. 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
The regular Saturday night racing season closes out at Grandview Speedway on Saturday, September 19th, 7 p.m. with the 3 Starz Inc. Landscaping Night featuring the Open Competition Wings and Things Modifieds (no motor limit) and Late Models along with the only appearance this season of the SpeedSTRS. Adult admission is $15.
Grandview Speedway is a one-third-mile, banked clay oval track located at 43 Passmore Road, just off Route 100, in Bechtelsville, PA, just 10 miles north of Pottstown. For information telephone 610.754.7688 or visit their website at www.grandviewspeedway.com