Martz, Hoffner, Shannon and Smith Victorious as Thunder Mountain Speedway Gears Up for Several Big Events!
Knoxdale, PA (August 6, 2010)
On Friday night, the Thunder Mountain Speedway presented a regular four division show at the 4/10’s mile Knoxdale oval. Picking up victories on the night were Rusty Martz (Super Stocks), Luke Hoffner (Steel Block Late Models), Kyle Shannon (Pure Stocks), and Ben Smith (FWD Thunderbolts). The racing action was hot and heavy as the weather was perfect and the smooth, fast track surface allowed the drivers to run multiple grooves.
The Super Stocks started off the feature events with Jeff Mease and Dan Henry leading the field to the green flag. Third place starter Dom Surra got a great start and dove under both Henry and Mease in turns one and two and grabbed the lead as the field entered turn three. Before a lap could be completed, the caution flew for a spin by Henry that would ultimately collect several cars, including heavy hitters, Rusty Martz, Dan Smeal, and Bob Conner. Martz and Conner would continue while Smeal was done for the night. The field was re-aligned for a full restart which saw Mease take the initial lead out of turn two. Mease would slide high in turn three opening the door for Surra and Skip Lindemuth to slip by. Surra and Lindemuth were looking strong as they quickly began to pull away from third place running Mease. While Lindemuth was beginning to mount a challenge to Surra for the lead, there was a three car battle for third between Mease, Martz and Chad Obrien. Up front, Lindemuth was now running side by side with Surra down the back stretch and made the pass for the lead on the low side of turn three. Mease, Obrien and Martz were racing hard for third when there was contact between Obrien and Mease that resulted in Mease spinning to a stop in turn three. Obrien was charged with the caution and went to the rear of the field for the restart. When the green flag flew again, Lindemuth began to open up a sizable advantage on Surra and the rest of the field, as Martz took third place away from Mease in turn three. Shortly after the halfway point, Surra slowed while exiting turn four, and left the speedway with mechanical problems. Martz was now up to second and was beginning to close the gap on Lindemuth. Within a few laps, Martz had erased the advantage and was all over the rear bumper of the leader as they took the two laps to go sign. Before Martz could mount a challenge, the caution flew for debris on the front stretch. The caution would setup a two lap shootout for the win. When the green flag flew, Martz made his move, jumping to the high side of the speedway. Lindemuth held off the charge and maintained the lead as they raced passed the white flag. Martz again went high in turns one and two and got a great run to pull even with Lindemuth down the back stretch, and into turn three. Lindemuth was low, and Martz was high as the pair exited turn four side by side in a drag race to the checkered flag, with Martz picking up the victory by a narrow margin at the line in a photo finish! Following Martz and Lindemuth across the strip to round out the top five were Gary Luzier, Bob Conner, and Jeff Mease. Heat race winners were Rusty Martz and Bob Conner.
The Steel Block Late Models were next on the card with Bob McMillen and Chuck Kennedy occupying the front row. McMillen would take the early lead with Kennedy right on his tail, as fifth place starter Denny Fenton flew by Chris Clark and Matt Gaston in turn one to grab the third position. McMillen held the lead through the early portion of the race, fending off the challenges from Kennedy and Fenton as Gaston and Luke Hoffner were working their way to the front. Fenton made a bid for second going in to turn three, but lost the handle and spun to a stop. On the restart, McMillen again jumped out to the lead with Kennedy all over him again. Hoffner was hooked up on the low side of the speedway and wrestled the third position away from Gaston as the field neared the halfway point. Kennedy was still applying heavy pressure to McMillen for the lead, when the J-bar broke on the McMillen machine as the leader entered turn three. McMillen shot up the speedway in the middle of turns three and four, right into the path of the hard charging Gaston who had no where to go. The impact sent McMillen into the air and ended with the McMillen on his side. Both drivers walked away from the accident, but both were done for the night with heavy damage. Kennedy assumed the lead with Hoffner in second and Dwayne Brooks, Rick Maxim and John Brady rounding out the top five for the restart. For the next eight laps, Kennedy and Hoffner battled each other tooth and nail for the lead with Hoffner down low and Kennedy riding the rim. The pair raced side by side, swapping the lead each lap before Hoffner was finally able to wrestle the lead away exiting turn two, with only two laps remaining. As the field took the white flag, Kennedy, thinking the checkered had waved slowed on the back stretch allowing Brooks to take the second and Fenton completed his run back through the field by getting around Kennedy for third at the line. The mistake took Kennedy from second to fourth on the final lap with Maxim rounding out the top five. In victory lane, Hoffner congratulated Kennedy on a great run and dedicated his win to the late Shawn “Sheetz” McGarvey saying that “This win is one for the fat guys!” Heat race wins went to, Denny Fenton and Luke Hoffner.
Kyle Shannon has been on a tear in the Pure Stocks this season, and tonight was no exception. Jason Joiner and Shawn Lindemuth lead the field to the green with Joiner taking the lead. Shannon worked his way around Zach Gustafson for third and began to challenge Lindemuth for second as Joiner continued to lead. Shannon took second from Lindemuth as the field exited turn two and was side by side with Joiner for the lead as the pair raced down the front stretch. Shannon would take the lead in turn two and never look back. Joiner and Lindemuth would spend the rest of the event racing for second as Shannon pulled away to a comfortable win. Following Shannon across the line were Joiner, Lindemuth, Sam McClellan, and Lori Weaver. Jason Joiner won the single heat race.
The FWD Thunderbolts were the final feature of the evening with John Campisano and Chad Greely on the front row. Greely took the lead on the start began to open up a large lead as the rest of the field jockeyed for position behind him. Last weeks winner Ben Smith started scratch on the field and patiently worked his way above and below his competitors as he raced to the front. Once in second, Smith began to run down Greely, and the pair raced hard for several laps with Greely holding on to the lead before Smith took the lead out of turn four as the leaders approached the two laps to go sign. Greely didn’t go away quietly and made one last charge at Smith on the final lap but Smith was able to turn away the challenge to pick up his second win in a row. Following Smith and Greely across the line were Randy Rickard, Cory Silvas and Mike Fields. Heat race winners were John Campisano and Ben Smith.
Notes: Several announcements in regards to the upcoming Mike Eberl Memorial Race that will be run at the speedway on Friday night August 20th. The Mike Eberl Memorial will feature the Steel Block Late Models competing for $2500 to win, courtesy of Robert Lenard Trucking and $200 guaranteed to start. The Eberl Memorial will once again be a Make -a- Wish benefit in Mike’s name and trophies will be sponsored by Healthsource Chiropractic and Progressive Rehab. Position sponsors are being secured to add the extra payout to purse, a list of sponsors can be found on the speedway web site. Regular show admission prices will be in effect for the Mike Eberl Memorial. Next week, the Thunder and Lightning of the 410 Winged Sprint Cars will return to Thunder Mountain for their final show of 2010 at the speedway! Come feel the Thunder at Thunder Mountain Speedway! www.thundermountainspeedway.net
1. Rusty Martz, 2. Skip Lindemuth, 3. Gary Luzier, 4. Bob Conner, 5. Jeff Mease, 6. Brian Rhed, 7. Jonny Lindenpitz, 8. Rich Howell, 9. Roger Miller, 10. Chad Obrien, 11. Dom Surra, 12. Orin Taylor, 13. Fuzzy Fields, 14. Dan Henry, 15. Dan Smeal 16. Todd English, DNS: Paul Blake
Steel Block Late Models:
1. Luke Hoffner, 2. Dwayne Brooks, 3. Denny Fenton, 4. Chuck Kennedy, 5. Rick Maxim, 6. John Chesnalavich Jr. 7. Bruce Raybuck, 8. John Brady, 9. Bob McMillen, 10. Matt Gaston, 11. Mike Zemrose, 12. Chris Clark, DNS: Bill Davis
1. Kyle Shannon, 2. Jason Joiner, 3. Shawn Lindemuth, 4. Sam McClellan, 5. Lori Weaver, 6. Mike Calhoun, 7. Zach Gustafson, 8. Chad Ramsey
1. Ben Smith, 2. Chad Greely, 3. Randy Rickard, 4. Cory Silvas, 5. Mike Fields, 6. Mylo Kemmer, 7. Randy Holliday, 8. Rusty Murray, 9. John Campisano, 10. Wayne Terwillinger, DNS: Jonny Miller