By BARRY ANGSTADT
KUTZTOWN, PA – Great weather, fantastic crowd, and a terrific night of racing brought down the curtain for the three weekly divisions at the JeffreyHogueRealtor.com Action Track USA on Wednesday night. And when it was over, Tim Buckwalter, Kyle Spence, and Nick Vinciguerra wore the biggest smiles at the annual Kutztown Fair.
Buckwalter, the Pottstown, Pa. ace, put a giant exclamation point on a tremendous season at the Kutztown Fairgounds oval by winning the 30-lap main event for the USAC All Pro SpeedSTRs and, in the process, capturing his first SpeedSTR point championship over Billy Pauch Jr.
Kyle Spence, from Bear, Delaware, registered the win in the Hyper Racing Super 600 Fair Nationals, a 60-lap affair presented by AEI Equipment Services and the Quality Shoppe Restaurant in Kutztown. While Spence won the race, runner-up Tim Buckwalter notched his second point title of the night, and his second track championship in the 600 Sprint division at Action Track USA.
Nick Vinciguerra, who hails from Kintnersville, Pa., triumphed in the 20-lap Troy Moyer Memorial Race for the All Star Slingshots.
The SpeedSTR finale` came down to a battle between T. Buckwalter and Billy Pauch Jr., and that was very fitting, since they were the two drivers vying for the point championship. “It was great racing; a little dirty at times, but you’ve got to do whatever you have to do to win these things,” said Buckwalter afterward.
Pauch started on the pole of the A-Main and led until eighth-starting Buckwalter got by him with five to go. Prior to Buckwalter’s pass for the lead, he and Pauch staged a whale of a battle for the top spot, running side by side and rubbing when necessary, with Pauch narrowly edging ahead each time they crossed the start/finish line. On lap 25, though, Buckwalter finally squeezed up in front of the Heffner Motorsports No. 27 to secure the lead.
“This one is for the crew; they are just awesome and work their butts off,” said Buckwalter in victory lane after scoring his sixth win of the season in the Action Track USA SpeedSTR division and clinching the championship.
“He was just a little better than us all season long,” noted Pauch Jr. after he and Buckwalter congratulated one another in the winner’s circle. “Yeah, it got a little dirty at times, like he said, but we never took each other out and it was fun racing him this year. We won the two big ones (both editions of the Dick Tobias Classic) this season, so it was still a real good year.”
Trailing Buckwalter and Pauch Jr. at the line were Matt Janisch, Jeff Hartman, and Ohio’s Matt Westfall. Janisch and Hartman battled among the front runners for the entire 30 laps before Janisch finally prevailed for third place money.
Kyle Spence had to fight the alphabet and an early race skirmish, but he persevered and showed that he definitely had the best car on Wednesday, as the Delaware native came from the rear of the field – twice – to record the $2,000 victory in the 60-lap Super 600 Fair National for the Hyper Racing 600 Sprints.
With a huge field of 76 entrants, Spence had to battle his way from one of the C-Mains, then through the B-Main, just to get to the A-Main, where he rolled off in 22nd starting position. He got collected in a multi-car incident in the early going, but fought back and moved into the top five by lap 27.
As Spence was going through his trials and tribulations, Damon Paul set the pace in the first part of the event. Tommy Kunsman slipped by Paul to take over the lead on lap seven, only to give up the top spot to Tim Buckwalter on the 13th trip around the oval. Buckwalter would build a comfortable lead over the next 14 circuits, but a yellow flag with 27 complete brought him back to the rest of the pack.
Spence went to third on the restart and began to hound Pauch Jr. for the runner-up spot. Spence finally wrestled second place from Pauch, who was the point leader going into the big race, with 20 laps remaining. On the next revolution, Pauch spun in turn one after contact with a lapped car. The resulting damage forced him to retire and, with Buckwalter’s eventual runner-up finish, cost Pauch the 600 Sprint title.
On the restart after Pauch’s spin, Spence went to work on the leader, throttling past Buckwalter to grab the top spot as they charged off turn four to complete lap 43. At the same time, 27th starter Kyle Lick motored into third place, although he and Colorado driver Eric Bodine diced for that position for several laps before Lick claimed it for good.
Once in front, Spence darted away from Buckwalter and the rest of the field, crossing under the checkered flag with a margin of nearly 1.5-seconds over Buckwalter. Lick finished third ahead of Bodine, with Jesse Maurer, who started 29th, rallying for a fifth-place payday.
The 600 Sprint race was also the second event of Hyper Racing 600 Speedweek presented by SmallCarWeekly.com. Buckwalter now has a first and second in Speedweek competition after winning on Tuesday night at Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway. The Speedweek point champion will earn $1,000, with races remaining at Linda’s Speedway on August 17 and Bridgeport, NJ’s Spirit Auto Center Speedway on Friday the 18th.
The All Star Slingshots competed in the Troy Moyer Memorial Race on Wednesday, and Nick Vinciguerra used the occasion to score his first Action Track USA victory.
Vinciguerra started on the pole of the 20-lap feature and led all the way, fending off the challenges of Zac Kistler and Dave Carraghan to notch the win.
At the finish, it was Vinciguerra over Carraghan, with Brett Bieber racing home in third ahead of Dylan Hoch. Kistler wound up fifth for his best Action Track USA finish to date.
With his fourth place effort, Hoch won his second consecutive Slingshot point title at the Kutztown Fairground facility. The championship was even more special because it came in the Troy Moyer Memorial, and Moyer was Hoch’s uncle. Moyer, a racer at Big Diamond, Grandview, and Lake Mocatek Speedways, passed away from a malignant brain tumor several years ago.
Action Track Sidebites:
An incredible 76 wingless 600 Sprint teams entered the Super 600 Fair National on Wednesday, setting an Action Track USA record for the number of cars in one division. Another 31 SpeedSTRs and 32 All Star Slingshots pushed the grand total to 139 cars taking part in the season finale` for the weekly divisions.
In addition to his track titles in the SpeedSTR and 600 Sprint Classes, Tim Buckwalter also prevailed in the battle for the 2017 National SpeedSTR Championship, his second straight on the National Tour. Buckwalter claimed the title by just ten points over Billy Pauch Jr.
The SpeedSTR B-Main had a very scary incident when Keith Prutzman and Brody Adamsky, starting side by side on the front row, got together as the green flag waved. Adamsky went flipping into the front stretch catch fence, taking down approximately 30 feet of chain link fencing along with a few support posts. He was unhurt in the mishap and even made quick repairs to his car before starting the feature! A large group of track officials went to work and made timely repairs to the fence so the program could continue.
USAC All Pro SpeedSTRS (30 Laps) — 1. Tim Buckwalter 2. Billy Pauch Jr. 3. Matt Janisch 4. Jeff Hartman 5. Matt Westfall 6. Tyler Ross 7. Briggs Danner 8. TJ Mayberry 9. Jason Rochelle 10. Dylan Hoch 11. Steve Nederostek 12. James Morris 13. John Bockhorn 14. Pierre Hebert 15. Steve Buckwalter 16. Tim Iulg 17. Tyler Courtney 18. Brad Brightbill 20. Brody Adamski 21. Keven Hebert 22. Tom Mayberry 23. Earl Pau…les 24. Sabrina Blanchett 25. Doug Manmiller 26. Kenny Brightbill 27. Louden Reimert 28. Phil Meisner 29. Mike Bednar.
Hyper Racing 600 Sprints (60 Laps) — 1. Kyle Spence 2. Tim Buckwalter 3. Kyle Lick 4. Eric Bodine 5. Jesse Mauer 6. Ryan Groff 7. Tommy Kunsman 8. Alex Bright 9. Damon Paul 10. Bradley Brown 11. Tyler Ulrich 12. Chad Sandt 13. Danny Buccafusca 14. Colin White 15. Jake Severn 16. Kameron Morral 17. Joey Kay 18. Jared Kunkle 19. Austin Quick 20. James Morris 21. Billy Pauch Jr. 22. Jason Swavely 23. Tyler Brehm 24. Dave Dimaio 25. Eddie Strada 26. Aaron Bollinger 27. Wayne Scott 28. Zack Bealer 29. Robbie Hocker 30. Duane White 31. Andrew Layser 32. Kenny Miller 33. Jim Radney.
All Star Slingshots (20 Laps) — 1. Nick Vincinguerra 2. Dave Carraghan 3. Brett Bieber 4. Dylan Hoch 5. Zac Kistler 6. Taylor Mills 7. Dakota Kohler 8. Anthony Raisner 9. Joe Toth 10. Troy Langendoermer 11. Lee Schantzenbach 12. Gavin Danner 13. Matt Miller 14. Austin Stufflet 15. Kyle Herve 16. Kyle Smith 17. Felix Roy 18. Nick Del Campo 19. Jordan Moyer 20. Tanner Vandoren 21. John Arms 22. Alexander Lizotte 23. Jared Silfee 24. Alex Yankowski 25. Seth Spayd 26. Lindsey Garl 27. Austin Daniels.
Pioneer Pole Buildings 600 Sprint Mad Scramble #1: 1.Damon Paul, 2.Jacob Balliett, 3.Dakota Barlet, 4.Zeb Wise, 5.Joey Amantea, 6.Georden Marrero, 7.Matt Roselli, 8.Dan Schumaker, 9.Matt Carr, 10.Jared Lilly.
Pioneer Pole Buildings 600 Sprint Mad Scramble #2: 1.Tyler Brehm, 2.Ryan Quackenbush, 3.Tyler Kehs, 4.Kassidy Michael, 5.Jason Muldowney, 6.Joey Jarowicz, 7.Brett Altemose, 8.Dylan Licklider, 9.JT Brotosky, 10.Zack Bealer.
All Star Slingshots Mad Scramble: 1.Zac Kistler, 2.Anthony Raisner, 3.Nick Vinciguerra, 4.Jared Silfee, 5.Dakota Kohler, 6.Austin Daniels, 7.Kyle Smith, 8.Kyle Herve, 9.Lee Schantzenbach, 10.Jordan Moyer.