BECHTELSVILLE, PA Beating the rain and all challengers Craig VonDohren was able to wheel his Felty Farms No.1c to victory in the Rastelli Direct 30-lap NASCAR Whelen All American Series 358 Modified feature at Grandview Speedway on Saturday night. The 20-lap main event for the NASCAR Late Models was won by Mike Kellner in the Watash Speed Shop/Power Washers No. 57.
With the weatherman predicting heavy rain for about 10 p.m. on Saturday night, and other tracks located West of Grandview postponing due to rain, officials working closely with the racers were able to run off 11 events of racing in two hours and 30 minutes having fans heading home at 10 p.m.
Kevin Albert Jr. set the early pace but for only a short distance as he spun in front of the 28 car Modified feature starting field in the fourth turn bringing out an early caution and sending him to the pits with heavy front end damage.
With the green out again for the restart of the first lap A.J. DeSantis went to the front and set the pace for the first eight laps. Danny Erb came up to challenge DeSantis for the front spot, including a couple of laps of side by side action, only to have six time track champion Craig VonDohren charge past both of the on the backstretch to gain the lead on the 11th lap.
VonDohren, who hails from nearby Boyertown, was able to pull away from the field a couple of times only to have cautions close up the competition.
For several laps VonDohren held off Danny Erb, who was working on one of his strongest finishes of the season, and then in the closing laps had to hold off current NASCAR 358 Modified point leader Duane Howard.
At the finish VonDohren had a slim margin of victory over Howard (Oley) who was able to retain his point lead with the second place finish. Third spot went to Danny Erb (Boyertown) followed by Jeff Strunk (Bechtelsville) and Jarrod Miller (Barto).
“The track was real slippery so I found it better to stick to the bottom,” said the race winner. “I would rather deal with lapped cars than cautions as I had to do tonight.” The win was the third of the season for the veteran racer and his 73rd career win at the Berks County clay oval.
Mike Kellner made it look easy as he charged past early leader Bill Henning on the fifth circuit of the one-third-mile, banked clay oval. Once the Lansdale racer was in front of the pack he managed to hold off the strong challenges of past champion for the balance of the 20-lap feature race for his second win of the season. Ron Kline, a three feature winner this season, just could not gain the momentum needed to get by Kellner and the Salford racer had to settle for second. Third spot went to defending champion Brian Shuey (Shoemakersville) followed by Randy Stoudt (Pottstown) and Randall Paxton (Factoryville).
Kellner, a young man of few words, told victory lane announcer Pete Knappenberger that the track was “super fast.” He was then off to celebrated his victory.
By virtue of his third place finish in the feature race Brian Shuey took control of the Late Model point standings with the top five separated by about 150 points.
Qualifying heat race wins were earned, in the modifieds, by Andy Burkhart, Jeff Strunk , Kevin Albert Jr. and Jarrod Miller. The consolation event victories went to Meme DeSantis and Terry Meitzler. In the Late Models the qualifiers were won by Randall Paxton, Mike Kellner and Bill Henning.
The Cargo Trailer Sales 10th place awards went to John Giesler in the Late Models and Don Norris Jr. The Dan’s Deli Halfway Leader awards were earned by Craig VonDohren in the Modifieds and Mike Kellner in the Late Models.
One of the most exciting events of the season comes to Grandview Speedway on Saturday, June 12th when the United Racing Company sprint cars are in action along with the NASCAR Whelen 358 Modifieds, a doubleheader show sponsored by Banes Roofing set to start at 7:30 p.m.
Fans are reminded that coming up on Saturday, June 26th is the second annual Don Marks Memorial sponsored by BPG Racing/Chad Sinon Motorsports. This event is run to remember the long time track photographer who passed away back in early 2008. Lap sponsorships are just $10 and heats can be sponsored for just $150. Marks did so much for the sport and in particular for racers here at Grandview. The 358 Modifieds and Late Models will race with a $1,000 gift certificate being presented to the winner of the Modified feature from Troyer Race Cars. Contact Ernie Saxton at 215.752.7797 or at Esaxton144@aol.com
to become a lap or heat sponsor.
Reasonably priced opportunities to market through motorsports at Grandview Speedway are available by contacting Ernie Saxton Communications, Inc. at 215.752.7797. A color brochure outlining all the opportunities is available upon request.
Grandview Speedway is located at 43 Passmore Road in Bechtelsville, PA, just a short distance off Route 100, 10 miles north of Pottstown. For information telephone 610.754.7688 or check in at www.grandviewspeedway.com