By CHRIS MOORE
GEORGETOWN, DE – Billy Pauch Jr. picked a perfect night to shine.
With the MAV-TV cameras shining and a fantastic crowd on hand, Milford, N.J.’s, Pauch Jr. won the sixth edition of the VAHLCO Wheels ‘Blast at the Beach’ presented by Melon 1 at Georgetown Speedway.
Pauch Jr. took home the $6,000-plus paycheck for his second career Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series (STSS) Fueled by Sunoco Modified win and his second career triumph at Georgetown. It marked his first series win since June 2016.
Racing has a funny way of working itself out sometimes.
Pauch Jr. was asked which of the eight STSS Velocita-USA South Region presented by Design for Vision and Sunglass Central events he thought he would win when the 2019 season began.
“New Egypt (N.J.) Speedway for sure,” he said. “But I screwed that up. It feels good to come back tonight with this field and win one, especially racing with Matt (Sheppard).”
Pauch Jr., driving Rick Holsten’s No. 96, started the 35-lap main event from fourth position.
Andy Bachetti and ‘Super Matt’ Sheppard made up the front row after earning their starting berths in the 5-lap Jones Racing Products What Drives You® Dash.
Sheppard would use the outside to his advantage, grabbing the quick lead and Pauch Jr., launched off the second row to gain the runner-up position.
Lap three would begin a yellow-flag-filled sequence of laps including a seven-car pileup that included the likes of Jimmy Horton, Brandon Grosso, Richie Pratt Jr., and Joseph Watson, among others.
The field finally got to racing after a lap-six restart. Sheppard and Billy Jr. would pull away from the field, Sheppard utilizing the top side, with Pauch Jr. glued to the bottom.
On lap 13, ‘The Kid’s Kid’ did something very few drivers have been able to do in 2019. Pauch Jr. drove to the bottom just as ‘Super Matt’ picked up a push through the middle of turns one and two.
That was all Pauch Jr needed. He took the lead into turns three and four and never look back.
Following a lap-15 restart, the last 20 laps went caution-free, and the lead trio – including third-running Bachetti – pulled away.
With eight laps to go, it appeared as though Sheppard was starting to reel in Pauch Jr. However, slower traffic played into Pauch Jr.’s hands.
Pauch Jr. would ultimately lead the last 22 laps to grab the Sunoco checkered flags from series starter Joe Kriss.
Pauch Jr. received $6,350 for his efforts: $6,000 from the posted purse, $200 as the Precision Hydraulic & Oil Halfway Leader, $100 from the Jones Racing Products What Drives You® Dash and $50 from the Bill Brown & Company for the ‘Move of the Race’ Award.
Sheppard, of Savannah, N.Y., maintained his South Region championship lead with a runner-up finish in the Hurlock Auto & Speed No. 9s. Bachetti’s long ride south from Sheffield, Mass., was rewarded with a third-place finish. Billy Pauch Sr. of Frenchtown, N.J., completed a successful night for the Pauch family in fourth and David Van Horn Jr. of Ringoes, N.J., completed the front five.
Nursing home the Ron Roberts-owned No. 14w with a broken suspension, Ryan Watt of Boyertown, Pa., finished sixth, followed by Oley, Pa.’s Craig Von Dohren in the Dick Biever No. 14s, Burlington, N.J.’s Ryan Krachun, Jeff Strunk of Boyertown, Pa., and Jordan Watson of Milford, Del.
Bachetti earned $500 as the winner of the 5-lap Jones Racing Products® ‘What Drives You’ Modified Dash over Sheppard.
Heat winners, receiving $50 each from Ad-Art Sign Company, were Von Dohren, Pauch Sr., Jimmy Horton and Bachetti.
The Beyea Headers $100 Fast Time recipient was Rick Laubach at 19.628 seconds.
For the first time in his career, Tom Sherby of Petersburg, N.J., put his name on the STSS Crate 602 Sportsman win list, topping the Jones Racing Products What Drives You® 20-lap main event, Round No. 5 of the STSS Crate 602 Sportsman South Region. He earned $1,500 for his efforts.
The majority of the nightcap event was paced by Jim Housworth, who entered the night as the Crate 602 Sportsman South Region point leader.
Sherby caught Housworth on the 16th lap. One tour of the half-mile oval later, he worked to the inside and paced the remaining three laps of the event.
Housworth was a disappointed runner-up, with teenager Justin Grosso earning a career-best STSS finish in third, ahead of Joe Toth and another talented young driver in Cole Stangle.
Robert Smith won his second consecutive Delaware Super Truck feature, passing David Smith on a last-lap restart for the win in the 12-lap main. David Smith would hold onto second, Matt Esham finished third, Ronnie Holloway grabbed the fourth place spot, and Thomas Jackson rounded out the top five.
Chris “Tippy” Martinez pulled off a crowd-pleasing win in the Delmarva Charger 12-lap feature. Robert Paczkowski finished in the runner-up spot, Jerry Barker finished in third, and Ashley Merritt and Wayne White Jr. rounded out the top five.
BEACH BITS: On a cool summer night, a huge crowd took in the sixth edition of the ‘Blast at the Beach’ co-promotion involving driver Eric Kormann and BD Motorsports Media LLC. The pit area was bustling with 35 STSS Modifieds, 33 STSS Crate 602 Sportsman, 15 Delaware Super Trucks and 13 Delmarva Chargers for a total of 96 cars….
With cloudy conditions and MAV-TV cameras on hand, a heavier-than-usual track surface was in place for the event….
2018 winner Anthony Perrego was done for the night in heat-race competition after mechanical issues with the Gary Simpson No. 12K….
Each of the night’s winners received surfboard trophies custom lettered by Ad-Art Sign Company….
Racing resumes at Georgetown Speedway on Friday, September 13 with Capitol Renegade United Racing Company (URC) 360 Sprint Cars, L&J Sheet Metal Modifieds, Chesapeake Paving/J.W. Brown Trucking Crate 602 Sportsman, Southern Delaware Vintage Stock Cars, Little Lincolns, Delmarva Chargers and Delaware Super Trucks.
Georgetown Speedway, originally constructed by Melvin L. Joseph in 1949, is located at the intersection of Route 113 and Speedway Road in Georgetown, Del., just miles from the Delaware beaches and less than a 40-minute drive from Ocean City, Md.
A website is live for the speedway at www.thegeorgetownspeedway.com. Like Georgetown Speedway on Facebook, follow @thegtownspdwy on Twitter, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or contact the speedway hotline at 302.563.GTWN (4896).
VAHLCO RACING WHEELS ‘BLAST AT THE BEACH’ PRESENTED BY MELON 1 RACE SUMMARY – GEORGETOWN SPEEDWAY TUESDAY, AUGUST 27
Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco Velocita-USA South Region Presented By Design for Vision and Sunglass Central South Region Event No. 7 Modified Feature Finish (35 laps): BILLY PAUCH JR., Matt Sheppard, Andy Bachetti, Billy Pauch, David Van Horn, Ryan Watt, Craig Von Dohren, Ryan Krachun, Jeff Strunk, Jordan Watson, Richie Pratt Jr., Matt Stangle, Rick Laubach, Danny Johnson, H.J. Bunting, Roger Manning, Kevin Sockriter, Scott Van Gorder, Danny Bouc, Shawn Ward, Clay Tatman, Jimmy Horton, Mike Gular, Brandon Grosso, Joseph Watson, Jeremy Smith.
Did Not Qualify: Jordn Justice, Corey Cormier, Ryan Riddle, Howard O’Neal, Brian Hitz, Dan Johnson, Kevin Gardner, Carson Wright, Anthony Perrego.
Jones Racing Products What Drives You® Modified Dash (5 laps): ANDY BACHETTI ($500), Matt Sheppard ($300), Craig Von Dohren ($200), Billy Pauch Jr. ($100), Billy Pauch ($75), David Van Horn ($50), Jeff Strunk ($50), Jimmy Horton ($50)
Ad-Art Heat Winners ($50 Each): Craig Von Dohren, Billy Pauch, Jimmy Horton & Andy Bachetti
American Racer/Lias Tire Bonuses (FREE Tire): Ryan Krachun (eighth) & Rick Laubach (13th)
ATL Fuel Cells Bonus ($200 Certificate): David Van Horn Jr. (fifth)
Behrent’s Performance Warehouse Bonuses ($50 Gift Card): Billy Pauch (fourth) & Jeff Strunk (ninth)
Beyea Custom Headers Fast Time Bonus ($100): Rick Laubach (19.628 seconds)
Bill Brown & Company ‘Move of the Race’ Award ($50): Billy Pauch Jr.
Design for Vision/Sunglass Central Bonuses (Ray-Ban Sunglasses): Billy Pauch Jr., Matt Sheppard & Andy Bachetti
EIBACH Springs Bonus ($100 Certificate): Ryan Watt (sixth)
Henry’s Exhaust System Power Position ($50 Certificate): Richie Pratt Jr., (11th)
Precision Hydraulic & Oil Halfway Leader ($200): Billy Pauch Jr.
Racing Optics Bonus (Sleeve of Tearoffs): Andy Bachetti (third)
Stockley Tavern Hard Charger Award ($500): Matt Stangle (23rd to 12th)
Sunoco Race Fuels/Insinger Performance Bonuses ($50 Certificates): Matt Sheppard (second), Matt Stangle (12th), Jimmy Horton (22nd)
WELD Wheels Hard Luck Award (FREE 5XL Wheel): Anthony Perrego
Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco South Region Event No. 5 Crate 602 Sportsman ‘What Drives You® 20’ Feature Finish (20 laps): THOMAS SHERBY, Jim Housworth, Justin Grosso, Joe Toth, Cole Stangle, Michael White, John Stevenson, Sammy Martz Jr., Ryan Simmons, Dwayne Crockett, Ryan Heim, Jimmy Johnson, Adam White, Matt Smith, Dylan Swinehart, Tom Princiotta, Scott Hitchens, Trent Wiley, Ryan Macartney, Sean Metz, Brandon Watkins, Steve Kemery, James Hill, Jordan Long, Trent Van Vorst.
Did Not Start: Mike Hough
Did Not Qualify: Anthony Tramontana, David Jenkins, Jeff Coffey, Samantha Muller, Rob Mancini, Jeff Marker, Bobby Watkins.
Liberty Propane of Delaware Hot Lap Awards ($20): Heat 1: John Stevenson (21.809), Heat 2: Scott Hitchens (21.393), Heat 3: Thomas Sherby (21.288), Heat 4: Joe Toth (21.554), Feature: Thomas Sherby (21.034)
Ryan McNichol Lawn & Property Hard Charger ($72): Jimmy Johnson (25th to 12th)
Delaware Super Truck Feature Finish (12 laps): ROBERT SMITH, David Smith, Dale Elliott, Matt Esham, Ronnie Holloway, Thomas Jackson, Ryan Efford, Michelle Jackson, Bill Dean, Tim Quay, Dick Beauchamp, Danny DiGrazio, Billy Lockwood, Kirk Miles, Sr., Jerry Hill.
Delmarva Charger Feature Finish (12 laps): CHRIS MARTINEZ, Robert Paczkowski, Jerry Barker, Ashley Merritt, Wayne White Jr, Hunter Bensel, Brandon Reifler, John Bailey, Greg Nailor, Joe Waters, Chris Carroll, Randy Merritt, Thomas Lecates.