HOWARD AND WELLER TAKE FEATURE VICTORIES AT GRANDVIEW SPEEDWAYGrandview PR
Bechtelsville, PA June 17, 2007 . . . Early evening rain showers that delayed the start of racing at Grandview Speedway for about 45 minutes made for a lightning fast clay oval. The very fast track proved to the liking of past champion Duane Howard as he won his fourth NASCAR Whelen All American Modified feature, a 30-lapper, on Saturday night. The 25-lap feature for United Racing Company sprint cars, the second part of Troy Wink Motorsports Night, went to Josh Weller.
Weller (Mertztown) charged to the front of the 24-car starting field and managed to lead every lap of the 25-lap feature to earn his first career feature victory with the URC sprint cars.
In the early part of the feature race Ed Aikin, a former Late Model champion at the track, challenged for the top spot from his third place starting spot. At the nine lap marker Chris Coyle moved from fourth to second with defending champion Curt Michael right behind.
For the next 20-laps it was quite a battle for the lead with Coyle sticking very close to the rear of Weller while Curt Michael was waiting for either of the front running duo to make a mistake.
In the final laps Coyle (Wilmington, DE) put heavy pressure on the fleet running Weller but had to settle for second. Curt Michael (Ocean View, DE) came home third. Ed Aikin (Lincoln University, PA) finished fourth followed by Kramer Williamson (Palmyra, PA).
Both Davey Sammons and Mares Stellfox flipped their sprinters during the feature event but suffered no injuries.
The 30-lap feature for the NASCAR Modifieds proved to be the excitement event of the night at least for the final 10 laps on the one-third-mile, banked clay track.
Todd Marburger went to the front of the field from his third place starting position in the 29 car field. The lead was short lived as Kerry Kratz moved to the front and stayed in front of the action until the 7th lap when the red flag brought a halt to the action because of a backstretch flip by Doug Manmiller. Five time track champion Jeff Strunk, working his way toward the front from his 10th place starting position was sent to the rear of the field for a rule infraction.
On the restart Jason Hamilton went to the front and looked as if he could be on his way to his first Grandview Speedway NASCAR Modified feature win.
Kerry Kratz brought out the caution as he hit the wall in between turns three and four. On the restart Danny Erb charged to the front as he and Hamilton made contact.
At 20-laps Danny Erb was in charge but now Duane Howard and his BPG Racing/Troyer Engineering No. 4 had come from 12th to challenge for the lead.
On the 27th lap Howard and Erb went side -by-side with Howard getting the top spot and leading the final three laps to take his fourth win of the season at the Bechtelsville oval.
In victory lane Howard (Oley) was quick to give much of the credit for his win to his chief mechanic Alan Finch. ?Finch tuned it up after the Cash Dash and the car just worked well. It looked like Erb was shutting off in the corners and that allowed me to go low and take the lead,? said Howard. ?The car worked on the bottom.?
When asked by victory lane announcer Pete Knappenberger if he was now planning to stay at Grandview, Howard responded with, ?I think we will be here for a while. We are working so well here.? Howard continues to be the point leader in the Modified division.
Second spot went to Danny Erb (Boyertown) followed by Jason Hamilton (Erwinna), Jeff Strunk (Mohnton) and Shawn Reimert (Oley).
Qualifying heat races for the Modifieds were won by Doug Manmiller, Vince Gagliardo, Duane Howard and Jason Hamilton. The consolations were taken by Ryan Beltz and Rick Schaffer. The Wink Motorsports Cash Dash went to Duane Howard.
The United Racing Company qualifiers were won by Joe Zuczek,