Rick Laubach Returns to Bridgeport Victory Lane
SWEDESBORO, NJ – Rick Laubach picked up his third feature win of the week with his win in the Spirit Auto Center Big Block Modified feature at the Bridgeport Speedway, leading every one of the twenty-five laps. It was Laubach’s first win of the season on the 5/8th mile, lightning fast track but his third win, at a third track and for a third different owner in just five days! An awesome feat to say the least!
And, Laubach was just one of three drivers to pick up their first Bridgeport wins of the season on this night of racing!
Young third generation racer, Matt Stangle drove his family owned Crate/Sportsman to the first win of his young career in the twenty lap Stewart Stainless Crate/Sportsman feature. Tom Wills, Jr. drove to his first win of 2016 in the PennCo Tech Oultaw Stock feature.
“This should be a no brainer, right?” Laubach asked. “This should be easy for me to win, starting on the pole but it’s not!”
The Big Block feature barely got underway before the caution and then red flag was thrown for a multi-car incident just outside of turn four. The cars of Scott Ambruster, Jordan Watson, Richie Pratt, Jr., Ricky DiEva, Ron Roberts and last week’s feature winner, Ryan Watt, were all involved. In spite of some pretty heavy damage, all cars were able to return to start at the rear of the field – even Watt who was towed from the scene.
Laubach led the way to the complete restart followed by Jim Britt, Dave Shirk with Corey Anderson and David Hunt who were racing for the fourth position. Only one lap could be completed before another caution was needed, this time when the car of Jesse Hill was caught on the front bumper of Dominick Bufflalino.
Joseph Watson was the driver on the move when the green flag waved again, quickly making his way into second as he continues to fill in for Jamie Mills in the Blue Hen No. 30. Watson staged a challenge on the leader, running the extreme outside, but Laubach was able to maintain his lead and again, start to pull away from the field. Laubach led Watson, Hunt, Duane Howard and Jim Britt with ten laps scored.
It was a three way battle for second as Hunt and Howard challenged Watson for position, with Hunt taking over second at the race’s mid point. With ten laps to go, the leaders were racing in lapped traffic. Laubach led the way as Hunt ran the top and Howard the bottom as he challenged for second.
With three laps to go, Tommy Beamer drew a caution when the Thornton No. 31 blew a heavy cloud of smoke. Laubach’s lead was erased as Hunt, Howard, Watson and Watt lined up single file behind the leader. Howard went to the bottom of the track to take second from Hunt out of turn two. One lap later, CJ Jones slowed with a flat tire, setting up a two lap shootout with Howard restarting on Laubach’s back bumper.
But the former track champion was not to be denied as he led the way to the checkered flag – his first Bridgeport win of the season. Howard finished second with Hunt taking third. Sam Martz made a late race charge to take fourth with Watt finishing fifth after the lap one incident.
Buffalino, Joseph Watson, Jordan Watson, Britt and Bob Sarkisian rounded out the top ten at the finish line.
After several weeks of disappointing finishes, Matt Stangle took the lead from Pete Visconti on a lap nine restart and then drove to the first win of his career, holding off Steve Davis in the final laps. Visconti finished third followed by Eric Kormann and Bob Lilick.
By the time the field exited turn two on the first lap, Tom Wills, Jr. was challenging for the lead in the PennCo Tech Outlaw Stock Feature. A lost wheel on the car of Joe Meron led to a multi-car incident on the backstretch involving Scott Dugan, Jeff Dirkes and Everett Taylor. Only Dirkes was able to restart.
Wills led all fifteen laps to capture his first win of the season. Brian Ludwig raced from the back of the pack to finish second. Tom Wills, Sr. substituting for Mike Vanimen, finished third with Terry Griffin and Art Avery completing the top five in th,e final rundown.
In just his second start in the DA’s Auto Body Rookie division, Tom Sherby drove to the win in the eight lap feature event over four time winner, Chuck Sayres, Jr. Tom Terry finished third.
The Friends of Mike event comes to the Bridgeport Speedway this Wednesday night with racing getting underway at 7:15pm. It’s the third hand of the 811 Dig Safely Poker Series as the Big Block Modifieds and the Crate/Sportsman compete in the mid-week doubleheader.
SPIRIT AUTO CENTER BIG BLOCK MODIFIEDS (25 laps): 1. Rick Laubach, 2. Duane Howard, 3. David Hunt, 4. Sam Martz, 5. Ryan Watt, 6. Dominick Buffalino, 7. Joseph Watson, 8. Jordan Watson, 9. Jim Britt, 10. Bob Sarkisian, 11. Richie Pratt, Jr., 12. Corey Andersen, 13. C.J. Jones, 14. Jesse Hill, 15. Mike Franz, 16. Ricky DiEva, 17. Ron Roberts, 18. Tommy Beamer, 19. Dave Shirk, 20. Bucky Kell, 21. Wade Hendrickson, 22. Matthew Peck, 23. Stan Frankenfield, 24. Scott Ambruster, DNQ – Anthony Moran, Ed Firth
D.A. AUTO BODY& REPAIR ROOKIES (8 laps): 1. Tom Sherby, 2. Chuck Sayres, Jr., 3. Tom Terry, 4. Eric Mattson
STEWART STAINLESS SUPPLY CRATE/SPORTSMAN (20 laps): 1. Matt Stangle, 2. Steve Davis, 3. Pete Visconti, 4. Eric Kormann, 5. Bob Lilick, 6. Kris Lilick, 7. Dave Damiano, 8. Brad Roberts, 9. Steve Kemery, 10. Connor King, 11. Scott Hulmes, 12. Justin Lilick, 13. Chuck Sayres, Jr., 14. Kevin Belmont, 15. Melissa Scarpati, 16. Billy Briggs, 17. Jeff Bubori, 18. Jeremy Harrington, 19. Ernie Miles, III, 20. Jeramy Doerr, 21. Tom Sherby, 22. Pete Serra, 23. Jeff Sargent, 24. David Crossman
PENNCO TECH OUTLAW STOCKS (15 laps): 1. Tom Wills, Jr., 2. Brian Ludwig, 3. Tom Wills, Sr., 4. Terry Griffin, 5. Art Avery, 6. Steven Land, 7. Mark Campagna, 8. Ken Moran, 9. Jeff Dirkes, 10. Roy Combs, 11. Scott Dugan, 12. Everett Taylor, 13. Joe Meron