“A lot of people thought we were down and out (after not winning
for two weeks in a row),” said Duane Howard in victory lane on Saturday night
at Grandview Speedway after winning his sixth NASCAR Whelen 358 Modified
feature race of the season. Apparently Howard and his team were not down and
out as Howard drove the Chad Sinon owned BPG Racing No. 4 from 16th
starting spot to take the win in the Bechtelsville Car Wash/A&Z Furniture
sponsored feature race. The win was worth $2750 to Howard including the TP Trailers
bonus. In addition Howard earned the VP Racing Fuels $150 product certificate
and a $50 Hard Charger award from Bobby Gunther Walsh and sponsors making for a
$2950 night. Sean Merkel drove the Kochel Equipment No. 118 to a win in the
25-lap NASCAR Late Model feature race giving him his first win at Grandview
since July, 2007. And Brett Kressley put the Kressley Auto & Truck Sales
No.19K in victory lane for the fourth time this season in the 25-lap Sportsman
Young Todd Smith, a recent Drexel
University graduate, charged to the front at the drop of the green for the
28-car starting field in the 30-lap NASCAR 358 Modified and set the pace for 19
laps while eventual winner Duane Howard was working his way through the field
from his 16th place starting spot. Smith was able to hold off
challenges from Mike Laise, Don Norris, Kyle Weiss and Howard for a few laps.
On the 20th lap Howard, a five time track champion, charged to the
front in Turn 4 with Kyle Weiss close behind.
The final laps saw Howard able to
build up a comfortable lead and the have it all wiped out when Doug Manmiller
took a wild flip in Turn 1 (he was not injured) and the event was red flagged.
On the restart Howard again took command and was able to hold off late race
challenges by Weiss and Meme DeSantis to get the victory.
The win put Howard (Oley) back in
front in the chase for the lucrative NASCAR 358 Modified title. Craig
VonDohren, who led the standings going into the night of racing, finished 19th
after a late race pit stop for a flat tire, and that put him 150 points behind
Howard. Second spot in the Modified feature went to Weiss (Hamburg) followed by
DeSantis (Temple), Tommy Scheetz III (Boyertown) and Mike Gular (Green Lane).
Tom Miller led all the laps except
the final two in the 25-lap NASCAR Sportsman feature race with Brett Kressley
charging to the front from his 13th place starting spot to gain the
lead on the 24th circuit of the one-third-mile, banked clay track.
Once in front the Orefield based racer was able to take his fourth win of the
season comfortably ahead of Tom Miller (Barto) followed by Ronnie Krex
(Hatfield), Paul Kline (Muhlenberg) and point leader Jared Umbenhauer
(Richland). Kressley’s car stopped in Turn 1 after he won and Brett ran to
victory lane while his car was being pushed because of a mechanical failure.
In the 25-lap feature for the Late
Models veteran racer Sean Merkel put his Kochel Equipment No. 118 in front of
the field at the start and led all the laps to win his first of the season and
first since 2007. A very happy Gilbertsville based racer said, “It feels great
to be back in victory lane. This win will help us as we set up for the big
Firecracker 40 coming up on Saturday night.” Merkel had been close to winning a
feature a couple of times during the first half of the season. Second spot went
to Chuck Schutz (Pottstown) coming from 12th starting spot. Schutz
continues to lead the point chase for the Late Models as he chases his seventh
title. Kory Fleming (Milford, NJ) finished third followed by Ron Kline
(Salford) making his first start of the season in the Late Models and Rick
The 12-lap qualifying heats for the
Modifieds were won by Jeff Strunk, Don Norris, Jon Kellner Sr. and Mike Laise.
The 10-lap consolations for the Modifieds were won by Ray Swinehart and Doug
Manmiller. The Bechtelsville Car Wash Cash Dash featuring the Modified heat
winners in a 5-lap race, paying $500 to win, was won by Jeff Strunk. Late Model
8-lap qualifiers were won by Sam Schlosberg and Chuck Schultz. Sportsman 8-lap
qualifying events were won by Guy Germano, Tom Miller and Erik Renninger with
the consolation, an 8-lapper, was won by Craig Whitmoyer.
The Hard Charger award for the
Modifieds sponsored by Bobby Gunther Walsh and sponsors went to Duane Howard as
he went from 16th to 1st in the feature The Searock Lawn
Care Hard Charger award for Sportsman was earned by Craig Whitmoyer as he
traveled from 19th to 6th and Jeff Teets’ Salvage Transport Hard
Charger award for Late Models was earned by Chuck Schutz who started 12th
and finished second.
Cargo Trailer Sales of Lansdale had $50 gift certificates for 10th place
finishers in each feature while Dan’s Deli has their special hoagies for the
leader of each feature at the halfway point. VP Racing Fuels has a $150
product bonus for the first NASCAR 358 Modified feature finisher using their
fuel, $100 product bonus for the first Late Model feature finisher using their
fuel and $75 product bonus for the first Sportsman feature finisher using their
fuel and carrying VP decals on the race car and VP patch on uniform.
Coming up on Saturday, July 6th, 7:30 p.m. the Fourth of July Spectacular
with great FIREWORKS SHOW, Firecracker 40 for Late Models and NASCAR 358
Modified racing. At least 10 events of racing plus Kory Fleming race team
bicycle giveaway and Henning Train Shop Lionel NASCAR trail giveaway.
Spectator gates open at 5:30 p.m. Adult admission is just $25.00 while young
people 6 through 12 pay just $5 and youngsters under 6 are admitted FREE. As
gates open there will be drivers doing a meet and greet along with having their
race cars on display.
A full color brochure outlining the marketing opportunities available at
Grandview Speedway, along with pricing, can be had by emailing Ernie Saxton at Esaxton144@aol.com or telephone 215.752.7797.
Information on racing at Grandview Speedway can be had by checking in at www.grandviewspeedway.com or telephone 610.754.7688. In
addition the official Grandview Speedway Facebook page can be found at www.facebook.com/grandviewspeedwayinc or check in on Twitter at