(04/14/12 About Bloggin’ Time) - Lebanon Valley put on a race-a-licious show for their opener, which lived up to expectations. Funny story right off the bat I ran into a guy who knows a bit about racing Rob Yetman. I asked him where his race rod was and he smiled and said, “ready for Malta.” Rob is racing the great race place in 2012 so heads up Pro Stock guys; you got a championship-winning driver to contend with. The funny part was the animated fellow standing next to Yetman and I talking about how much he enjoyed the Ridge track surface week one. I was like wow really at Lebanon Valley people want to talk about Glen Ridge track conditions? He made some valid points, but I came to the conclusion Jake must put something in the food. (lol)
Ahhh yes the Valley; standing at the gate waiting to cross I noticed one thing quickly, the scenery. (lol) Made my way to the infield and over to TH2 racing to say YO (aka hello in English). Big Time Little Tim was looking to have a good night on the high banks after his win opening night at the ridge, but things wouldn't exactly turn out that way later on. Since we arrived fashionably late AGAIN I had to scurry down to turn 2 to take some photos during heat races.
Ran into Rich Salisbury who is always ready to have a fun time taking photos. Matter of fact he took the time to stop for a unique photo op for fun just before his big fight with a fiberglass hood. Photo came out good; his fight ended up with Rich on his back. (lol) It was purely an accident when he did suffered a whack to the noggin while guys worked on their racers, but Rich informed me today even though he's still a little sore he is good to go.
Visited with Jeff Kariban during heat races and discussed a range of topics and then spent some time chatting it up with Mike Pettruci. During the heats it appeared the Flach Family had a going out of racing sale on broke engine parts. (joking) Mark Flach Jr. and JC Flach appeared to blow up power plants in the heat. The track was fast and smooth all night with a mini SDW atmosphere.
Wandered back down to the TH2 hauler for a drink and almost got thrown out for taking the Gatorade. (lol) Just kidding, but big Tim takes his Red Bull and Gatorade seriously. Feature time and the Pro Stock race was pretty good. Jay Corbin won and spoke humorously about it being better than his performance last season on opening night when he looped it. Damn those gremlins Jay! (lol)
The Valley moves the show right along and with no hour long intermission to sell hot dogs I didn't get a chance to even make it to the front stretch. I wanted to stop and visit with Brian Peterson, Brian Berger, Mike King, Kyle Sheldon, Natalie Johnson dash Bachetti, and a host of others, but seriously I only waddle so fast. Howie slow down the program boss! (lol) I promise my next Valley trip I will see these people first.
The Modified feature was an awesome show to be honest. All the heavy hitters started deep and Brett Hearn had Andy Bachetti and JR Heffner starting right near him at the green. It would be a race to front, which I'm assuming; whoever got there first would win. Now keep in mind I called Hearn, Heffner, and Bachetti prior to the race even rolling away after the National Anthem. Once the green came out it was the Hearn and Bachetti show as they started dicing through the field towing Heffner along with them. Steve Hough was out front rolling along early then later in the show ruined my top 3 party. (lol) Kiddin Steve, nice run.
By the end of the race Hearn was in another zip code, Hough was fuming over a lapped car, Heffner was out of time, and Bachetti was smoking. The traditional Hearn speech of “I didn't think I could win” or “We were down on horsepower” was expected, as he told Fox 23 Fast Tracks that it was nice to start the season in a car he ran at the Valley last year, which meant all the bugs were worked out of it and the Teo Pro Car was in mid season form. Come on Brett just once get out and say, “Yeah I've done this like 800 times, I’m just that good.” (lol) Earlier I mentioned picking Hearn, Heffner, Bachetti for top 3, well it was Hearn, HOUGH, Heffner, Bachetti. My top 3-pick percentage for races I attend is 75% with a Win pick percentage of 75% also. I’m en fuego!
Now in my opinion starting 32-34 Sportsman on the track at one time is too much. It seems there are far too many cars that have to dip, dive, and dodge when something goes wrong up front or mid pack. Up front it was a stellar race between Chris Lysogorski and Michael Sabia. Sabia was all over Lysogorski like a fat kid on a cupcake until the 24c of Lysogorski pulled in due to overheating issues.
This left Sabia out front to fend off the challenges of the flame blowing Frank Hoard again, again, and again, which at one point Hoard III was pushing Sabia down the front stretch. Sabia held on to win the show and in the results it shows Hoard being set back. Not sure why he was disqualified, as it doesn’t say in the press release. I’ll look into that.
During the race Ryan Darcy took a nasty spill off turn 4 after two cars tangled in front of him and he had nowhere to go. Tim Hartman Jr. had his front end dropped and Darcy flipped hard, but all drivers were ok. Also Nick Hotailing hammered the turn 4 wall pretty hard and below is the damage to his race rod. He lay resting catching his breath after his accident, but his night was done.
Now the funniest story of the night to me came after the entire racing show was done and everyone was heading out for the night. Poor Andy Bachetti busted his a$$ for 30 laps of big block ground pounding action and who drives his hauler home; ANDY. Come on guys; can a big block pilot get a chauffer to the shop after the race? Cut a brother some slack and let him ride shotgun to Dunkin Donuts at least. (lol)
It was once again an enjoyable trip to Lebanon, as we were treated to a good Modified feature, large 602 Sportsman show, and some full fender racing. Speaking of which, the Valley has nearly 36 Street Stocks if I counted close. Um…what are Fonda and Glen Ridge doing wrong? The Ridge had 7 and Fonda had 11; someone look into what the Valley does for their rules and make that happen to revive the SS division in Montgomery County.
Next week I’ll be at the Great Race Place and Fonda for the weekend. Feature Column Observe & Report is in the works for April and of course About Bloggin’ Time is written in a completely different style every week to recap my weekend of racing. Embrace the personality; hug it, its comfy and soft. (lol) Read it, live it, love it.