BECHTELSVILLE, PA – Five time Grandview NASCAR Modified point champion Duane Howard dueled back and forth with Dylan Swinehart beginning on the 18th lap of the 30-lap TP Trailers NASCAR 358 Modified feature on Saturday night at Grandview Speedway.
Swinehart, the rookie, kept Howard behind him until the 28th lap. At that point Howard finally “wore him down and got Swinehart to change the preferred line he ran basically throughout the entire race.” Coming out of the fourth turn with the two-lap to go signal in sight, Howard shot to the outside and proceeded to put the Norm Hansell-owned No. 357 Norm’s Save Station entry at the head of the pack and park it in victory lane for the third time this season at the 1/3-mile oval. Howard credited Swinehart for the great run he gave him in the very aggressive-driving activities broadcast live by RCN-TV, Allentown. In picking up the victory Howard now sits at the top of the point standings as Craig Von Dohren, the point leader going into the feature, finished 25th after being caught up in some of the multi-car mishaps that eventually sidelined him from competition.
Sean Weiss has not set foot in the Sportsman winner’s circle since August 8, 2015. He changed the standings of that status when he led all but two laps to win the T.P. Truck Equipment NASCAR Sportsman 25-lap feature to become the eleventh different winner this season in the division.
The Central Pa. Legends returned to the track for the second time this year and Travis McClelland managed to win the 20-lap feature event by a narrow margin over runner-up Bill Diehl.
Providing the Modified and Sportsman feature winners met the necessary requirements, they received monetary awards from T.P. Trailers and a certificate from VP Fuels for product awards. The Dan’s Deli ½-way hoagie award recipients were Dylan Swinehart and Sean Weiss. Derrick Smith, who placed 18th in the Sportsman feature received an extra $100 from the track for being the first crate engine.
Richie Hitzler was the early leader at the onset of the Modified feature. He held until Dylan Swinehart dove underneath him coming out of the fourth turn at the conclusion of the seventh lap.
With Swinehart now in command, Hitzler, Joe Funk III, Kenny Gilmore and Howard jockeyed for the remaining positions.
The red was thrown on the ninth lap when Clay Butler flipped in the fourth turn with several others being involved, fortunately no one was injured.
Swinehart was still the pacesetter when action resumed followed by Funk III, Steve Swinehart, Hitzler and K. Gilmore.
A multi-car homestretch incident that eliminated Von Dohren and Eric Biehn brought out the second red with ten laps completed.
A rash of three individual caution periods before the 12th lap could get in the books prompted a single file restart. By this time the order behind Swinehart when racing went green consisted of Funk III, K. Gilmore, Ryan Grim and Alex Yankowski with Howard attempting to join the top five mix in which he did on the 13th lap.
Yankowski and Howard advanced to second and third respectively on the 16th lap and two laps later positions were reversed with the pair putting on quite a battle to see who would possibly go on to challenge Swinehart.
The final yellow was on the 24th lap when Kory Fleming stopped between the first and second turn and Timmy Buckwalter slowed in turn four. Swinehart, in search of another win, wasted no time motoring away on the restart since he knew Howard was in the hunt for the same thing.
Despite all of Howard’s valiant efforts to become the new leader, Swinehart managed to keep him behind until the 28th lap, two laps shy of another triumph. It was at this point that after so many laps of following Swinehart on the low trek, Howard switched it up and went to the high trek and proceeded to take over first.
Howard continued to show the way until he chalked up his 75th Grandview career win with Swinehart a close second trailed by Yankowski, Funk III and Doug Manmiller, last week’s feature winner.
Heats were won by Brett Kressley, Howard, Steve Swinehart and Dylan Swinehart. Yankowski and Frank Cozze won the consies.
Before the first lap could be scored in the Sportsman feature Nichol Flammer flipped in turn one with several others involved. The restart saw B.J. Joly take the lead and hold that position for two laps before Weiss assumed command.
With Weiss now at the head of the pack action behind him was brewing between Joly, Jesse Landis, Kenny Bock and Jack Butler.
Positions behind Weiss were constantly changing and at the half-way marker Landis, Brad Brightbill, Bock and Jack Butler comprised second through fifth with last week’s feature winner Kyle Lilick knocking on the door and four laps later he was fourth.
Weiss continued his momentum the rest of the way to tally up his second career victory. Brightbill took over second with one lap remaining but it was too late. Third went to Landis followed by Lilick and Bock.
Weiss, Brad Grim and Brightbill were the heat winners. The consi winner was Mike Mammana.
Bill Diehl led the Legends feature for five laps before McClelland over took him for the lead.
Diehl didn’t surrender the lead easily as he stayed right with McClelland trying to regain control.
In the closing laps the front runners encountered lap traffic, but that didn’t deter McClelland and he went on to win the race followed by Diehl, Austin Beltemare, Chris Transeau and Chuck Dell.
Diehl and McClelland won the heats.
On Tuesday, July 30th, the United States Auto Club NOS Energy Drink Midgets will headline the Ken Brenn Midget Masters Night at Grandview Speedway. Also seeing action will be the always popular NASCAR 358 Modifieds. NASCAR Cup Series standout Kyle Larson will headline the Midget action that gets the green flag at 7:30 p.m. Spectator gates open at 5 p.m. Adult admission is $28, youngsters 6 thru 11 pay $10 and kids under 6 are admitted free. Pit passes are $35 with no license required.
Next Saturday, August 3, the T.P.Trailers NASCAR 358 Modifieds and T.P.Truck Equipment Sportsman are in action in an excitement filled doubleheader as racers continue the battle for the lucrative NASCAR track titles. Modified racers will be using the event as a tune-up for the Forrest Rogers Memorial scheduled for August 10. Spectator gates open at 5:30 p.m. with racing action scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Adult admission is just $15 with youngsters under 12 admitted free.
Coming up on Saturday, August 10th is the annual Forrest Rogers Memorial for NASCAR 358 Modifieds, a 50-lapper, paying $10,000 to win. The Sportsman will also be part of the doubleheader. Adult admission is $25, youngsters 6 through 11 pay $5 and kids under 6 are admitted free. Pit admission is $30 with no NASCAR license required.
T.P. Trailers Modified Feature (30-laps): 1. Duane Howard, 2. Dylan Swinehart, 3. Alex Yankowski, 4. Joe Funk III, 5. Doug Manmiller, 6. Kenny Gilmore, 7. Frank Cozze, 8. Jared Umbenhauer, 9. Ryan Grim, 10. Rick Laubach, 11. Jeff Strunk, 12. Craig Whitmoyer, 13. Ron Kline, 14. Brett Kressley, 15. Kevin Hirthler, 16. Richie Hitzler, 17. Dave Dissinger, 18. Ryan Lilick, 19. Tim Buckwalter, 20. Kory Fleming, 21. Brett Gilmore, 22. Steve Swinehart, 23. Colt Harris, 24. Eric Biehn, 25. Craig Von Dohren, 26. Clay Butler, 27. Louden Reimert, 28. Ray Swinehart. DNQ: Briggs Danner, Jesse Leiby, Glenn Owens, Ron Myers, Mike Lisowski, Mark Kratz. Kyle Kania, Justin Grim, Glenn Strunk, Bobby Gunther Walsh and Mark Levy.
T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman Feature (25-laps): 1. Sean Weiss, 2. Brad Brightbill, 3. Jesse Landis, 4. Kyle Lilick, 5. Kenny Bock, 6. Brian Hirthler, 7. Jack Butler, 8. Brad Grim, 9. Lex Shive, 10. Kyle Smith, 11. Mark Kemmerer, 12. Mike Mammana, 13. Jimmy Leiby, 14. Nathan Mohr, 15. B.J. Joly, 16. Brad Arnold, 17. Scott Kohler, 18. Derrick Smith, 19. Andrew Kreis, 20. Dean Bachman, 21. Shawn Light, 22. Ryan Beltz, 23. Steve Young, 24. Nicho Flammer. DNQ: Steve Desmelyk, Jimmy Leiby and Nate Brinker.
Central PA Legends Feature (20-laps): 1. Travis McClelland, 2. Bill Diehl, 8. Austin Beltemare, 4. Chris Transeau, 5. Chuck Dell, 6. Alex Schmiedel, 7. Zach Smith, 8. Mike Rabold, 9. Brandon Reiblich, 10. Eric Hurst, 11. Ben Goldsmith, 12. Cory Phillips, 13. Robert Shaw, 14. Michael Goldsmith, 15. Bryan Green.