By MIKE MALLETT
FULTON, NY– Paulie Colagiovanni continued his hot streak with the Lucas Oil Empire Super Sprints with another win during Donath MotorWorx Central New York Speedway presented by Stirling Lubricants. Colagiovanni parked his No. 10 in victory lane for the third time in four tries. This time it came at the Fulton Speedway.
Colagiovannia chased down race leader Chuck Hebing and made the pass coming through the final turn to the checkered flag to snag his fourth overall win of the 2019 season in the 25-lap NAPA Auto Parts / Mach 1 Chassis main-event. It was another $3,085 payday for the driver and edged him closer to his first ever Speedweek title.
The redraw was kind to Colagiovanni as the teenager drew the pole for the start of the A-Main. He led the opening circuit before Chuck Hebing went to the top of turns three and four to take over the number one position.
The duo remained together for much of the early go while sixth starting Matt Tanner entered the fray by lap five making it a three-car tussle at the front. They remained nose to tail for the top three positions in the race. Each driver took turns stepping out of line trying to find the fastest lane on the speedway.
“It was tough,” stated Colagiovanni. “Chuck got the jump on me early on. I was just trying to follow him. We talked earlier in the night about the middle lane being the fastest. I was just trying to peddle it the best I could.”
For the moment it remained a three car battle out front. As they challenged one another for the lead, Dylan Westbrook, Danny Varin and Larry Wight where all looking to gain control of the fourth position.
Traffic came into play as the race reached the midway point. Hebing started utilizing the bottom groove with Colagiovanni and Tanner continuing to search the race track for an advantage.
Wight started making his presence felt as he finally cleared Westbrook on lap 16 to move into the fourth. From there the Fulton veteran quickly tracked down the top three entering the fray for the lead by lap 20.
With heavy traffic around the action for the lead intensified as the race wound down. Hebing continued to keep Colagiovanni at bay. That was until the final circuit.
Hebing dove low going into turns three and four behind the slower traffic while Colagiovanni took a shot in the middle. Colagiovanni pulled even with Hebing as they came off of the fourth corner. As they raced to the line Colagiovanni just beat Hebing to the line to pick up the dramatic victory by .007 of a second.
“I knew I was catching him,” cited Colagiovanni. “At the white flag I knew I had a little bit on him. I watched him go to the bottom a couple times. I thought if I kept my momentum up I could get him and it worked out. I didn’t know it would end up being that close.”
Hebing was upset with himself after the race. He gave up too much time getting into the final corner allowing Colagiovanni to just sneak by him as they came to the checkered flag.
“It’s my own fault,” mentioned Hebing. “I slowed down way too much for the lapped cars I came to. I kept trying to hug the bottom. I should have forgot about that and just raced. I slowed myself down a half second and he came back to me. I knew in the car I did it. At the line it was close. He’s having a heck of a year. Second definitely sucks.”
Wight ended up passing Tanner on the final lap as well to put himself on the podium. Wight had a great race car, but the caution free race made it tough to get to the top two after starting as far back as he did.
“We really needed a caution,” said Wight. “I think we had the best car in the field, but we ran out of laps. We wasted a lot of time getting the by the 47x (Westbrook) trying to clear him. Once we got by him we seemed to run the lead pack cars down right away. I would have liked to see a few more laps there.”
Tanner settled for another top five run as he finished in fourth with Westbrook making a rare Empire Super Sprint start to finish in fifth.
The sprint log on night #4 totaled 33 and for the fourth night in a row, the A-Main went green to checkered!
Lucas Oil ESS/Mach 1 Chassis A-Main CNY Speedweek Event #4 Fulton – Paulie Colagiovanni ($3,085), Chuck Hebing ($1,585), Larry Wight ($1,060), Matt Tanner ($700), Dylan Westbrook ($530), Danny Varin ($470), Jason Barney ($430), Billy VanInwegen ($495), Jonathan Preston ($435), Jeff Cook ($600), Davie Franek ($360), Shawn Donath ($345), Joe Trenca ($300), Jordan Poirier ($375), Jeff Trombley ($450), Scott Holcomb ($325), Chad Miller ($300), Sam Reakes IV ($350), Mike Kiser ($300), Ryan Harrison ($300), Parker Evans ($300), Denny Peebles ($325), Kelly Hebing ($300), Josh Pieniazek ($300), Pete Richardson ($450), Emily VanInwegen ($100).
Did Not Qualify: Brett Wright, Kyle Moffit, Josh Flint, Dave Axton, Steve Lyons, Kevin Carlson, John Trenca
Stirling Lubricants Barrel of Methanol – Holcomb $175
Stirling Lubricants Drivers Meeting Draw – Richardson $100
E3 Spark Plugs Fast Time – Trombley, Preston, Wight, Poirier $25
Car Mate Trailers Heats – Colagiovanni, Donath, Wight, C. Hebing $25
Around Town Plumbing and Heating Halfway – C. Hebing $50
Pinnacle Pole Award – Colagiovanni $50
Fondations 55 Hard Charger – Holcomb (9 pos), $50
Lacaillade Masonry B-Main – Reakes IV $50
Ground Control Last Car Lead Lap – Peebles $25
Pitre Painting/Cobra Coaches Dash – Trombley ($125), B. VanInwegen ($75), Poirier ($50), Richardson ($50)
Ashley Lynn Winery Podium – Colagiovanni, C. Hebing, Wight $10
Hoosier Tire – Cook $200 —