GASTON, MARTZ, SHANNON AND JOINER FIND THEIR WAY BACK TO THUNDER MOUNTAIN SPEEDWAY VICTORY LANE
June 12, 2009
After it appeared Mother Nature might claim back to back wins, the track crew won the battle with a fast dust-free surface for drivers to tune up for next week’s Mid Season Championships. Matt Gaston (Steel Block Late Models) and Kyle Shannon (Pure Stocks) returned to victory lane while Rusty Martz (Super Stocks) and Jason Joiner (Thunderbolt Enduros) picked up consecutive wins. The new TMS Kids Club made its debut with huge success. More fun times for the kids are in order and will be announced weekly.
After winning the previous Super Stock feature event, Rusty Martz came from his 12th starting spot to remain undefeated at Thunder Mountain in 2009. “That was a wild ride” stated Martz in victory lane. “I knew I had my work cut out for me with the track being really tacky. All the fast cars started ahead of me, so I knew I had to get going or they would run away” continued Martz.
Dom Surra and Skip Lindemuth made up the front row as 3rd starter Tim Bish passed Lindemuth and challenged Surra for the lead into turn 1. Bish pulled along side Surra’s #T3 and took the lead entering turn 3 as Martz was already up to 6th. Lindemuth passed Surra as Steve Cook looked to do the same. Surra held the spot as Martz took 4th from Cook on lap 4. Cook fell to 6th as Brandon Connor took 5th while Martz was pressuring Surra for 3rd. Current point leader Bish slowed on lap 9 and exited to the pits, handing Lindemuth the lead as Martz got around Surra for now 2nd. Lindemuth had a big lead that Martz began chipping away at, but had help with a caution for Ben Asel and Fuzzy Fields with 5 laps to go.
Lindemuth led the restart with Martz looking for a way by. Martz took the lead with 2 laps to go as Surra’s night ended with a heavily smoking car heading pit side. Martz went on to take the win over new points leader Lindemuth, Connor, Cook, and Fields. The bottom half of the top 10 were Gary Luzier, Denny Draisma, Steve Barnes, Surra, and Asel. Heats went to Bish and Martz.
Matt Gaston improved on his runner up finish the previous race and won his 2nd Steel Block Late Model race in 3 tries. With barely a voice, Gaston had few words in victory lane. “I can hardly talk, but it’s nice to run with these clean drivers. Jimmy (Parson) is a heck of a driver, fun to race with” stated Gaston.
Points leader Ed Connor and Jim Parson Jr lead the field to green with Parson grabbing the lead entering turn 1. A lap 2 yellow for a Bill Krause spin reset the field. Gaston moved to his trademark high line and took 2nd from Connor on lap 4. He held his line and took the lead from Parson on lap 5. Once in front, Gaston opened ground on the field. In a close call for the leader, Krause and John Poling III collided in turn 1 right in front of Gaston. Gaston took evasive actions and missed the pile up, but a caution was displayed.
Back under green, Gaston once again started working on his lead as 13th starter Jerry Redden moved to 5th. Connor began challenging Parson before Parson slowed and headed to the pits just past the halfway mark. Poling III and Rick Maxim brought out a yellow allowing Parson to rejoin the field and staying on the lead lap. After the ensuing restart, Gaston made sure no one would challenge him as he headed to a full straight stretch lead and eventual win over Connor, Redden, Chuck Kennedy, and Bill Davis. 6th through 10th went to Parson, Maxim, Denny Fenton, Doug Updyke, and Cheyenne Reed. Gaston and Parson took home heat race wins.
In nearly a photo finish, Jason Joiner came from 13th to nip Chuck White at the checkered flag for his 2nd win in as many races. Next to his smoking #619, Joiner stated “The car got really hot, but it worked for the best. The lapped traffic made it hard. I have to thanks Tim Bish for all his help.”
After 3 attempts at a start, front row starters Sam Orf Jr and Chuck White raced side by side into turn 1 before White took the lead. Point leader Jamey Lee was 4th with Joiner already to 5th with 1 lap scored. Lee took 2nd from Orf on lap 4 bringing Joiner with him to 3rd. Lee went high in turn 4 allowing Joiner to take 2nd at the halfway mark. With 2 laps to go, White caught heavy lapped traffic with Joiner on his back bumper. White split a pair of cars on the back stretch, but Joiner made it 4 wide on the white flag lap. Heading into turn 3, Joiner mounted a charge and used the high line momentum to put him ahead of White’s #7W at the finish line. Lee was a solid 3rd with Orf and Roswell Babcock 4th and 5th. Cory Silvis, Aaron Hill, Mike Fields, Melvin Wisor, and Scott Brocious completed the top 10. White and Chad Greeley were heat race victors.
Kyle Shannon’s determination got himself back in victory lane after a hard fought Pure Stock feature win. “After least week, I knew I had to do something better. These guys are getting really good” admitted Shannon next to his #1S Monte Carlo.
Nathan Yeaney and Bob Alcorn paced the field to green and fought side by side for a lap before Alcorn crossed the line leading lap 1. 3rd starter Shannon took 2nd from Yeaney on lap 4 and caught Alcorn at the halfway point of the race. Shannon snagged the lead from Alcorn on lap 9 and started pulling away. With 5 laps to go, Alcorn’s car suffered a flat right rear tire as his #22X slowed but continued on. Alan Trunzo grabbed 2nd from Alcorn a lap later.
Shannon cruised to the checkered flag ahead of Trunzo, Yeaney, Brian Rhed, and Alcorn who faded to 5th. Jason Young, Jim Gullace Jr, Guy Coder, Josh Fields and Zach Gustafson rounded out the top 10. Alcorn and Shannon won the heat races.
Mid Season Championships for all divisions will take place next week, June 19 as drivers will vie for double points. General admission and pit gates open at 5:00 with the heat races kicking off at 7:30.
The 410 Sprints will return for the 2nd of 3 shows on June 26. With no other area tracks having Sprints on their schedules, fans can expect to see plenty of new cars and drivers. Further information will be available prior to the event. All information can be found on the track web site at www.thundermountainspeedway.net
1. RUSTY MARTZ, 2. Skip Lindemuth, 3. Brandon Connor, 4. Steve Cook, 5. Fuzzy Fields, 6. Gary Luzier, 7. Denny Draisma, 8. Steve Barnes, 9. Dom Surra (DNF), 10. Ben Asel, 11. Tim Bish (DNF), 12. Jim Handyside Jr (DNS).
HEAT WINNERS: Bish, Martz
STEEL BLOCK LATE MODELS:
1. MATT GASTON, 2. Ed Connor, 3. Jerry Redden, 4. Chuck Kennedy, 5. Bill Davis, 6. Jim Parson Jr, 7. Rick Maxim, 8. Denny Fenton, 9. Doug Updyke, 10. Cheyenne Reed (DNF), 11. Jim Poling III (DNF), 12. Bill Krause (DNF), 13. John Reed.
HEAT WINNERS: Gaston, Parson Jr.
1. JASON JOINER, 2. Chuck White, 3. Jamey Lee, 4. Sam Orf Jr., 5. Roswell Babcock, 6. Cory Silvis, 7. Aaron Hill, 8. Mike Fields, 9. Melvin Wisor, 10. Scott Brocious, 11. Matt Krause, 12. Ryan Kemmer (DNF), 13. Wayne Terwillinger (DNF), 14. Chad Greeley (DNF), 15. Chuck Himes (DNF), 16. Rusty Murray (DNF), 17. Randy Rickard (DNF).
HEAT WINNERS: Greeley, White
1. KYLE SHANNON, 2. Alan Trunzo, 3. Nathan Yeaney, 4. Brian Rhed, 5. Bob Alcorn, 6. Jason Young, 7. Jim Gullace Jr., 8. Guy Coder, 9. Josh Fields (DNF), 10. Zach Gustafson (DNF), 11. Shawn Hadden (DNF).
HEAT WINNERS: Shannon, Alcorn