By JAY PEES
CONNEAUT, OH – The Patriot Sprint Tour made the first of two 2017 visits to Raceway 7 with 22 of the alcohol-burning winged warriors signing into the pits. With rain getting close to the track and sprinkles starting to fall the Patriot Sprint Tour Sprint feature was moved to the first in the lineup.
Reigning champion Jared Zimbardi started the 25-lap race from the pole position with Cody Bova starting along side the four-time series champ. Zimbardi grabbed the immediate lead with Steve Collins coming to second before the end of lap one. Tyler Graves spun in turn three slowing the race at the end of lap one. Collins stayed with Zimbardi for the first lap under green but then slid wide in turn two, falling back but maintaining the runner-up position.
For the next three laps Zimbardi lengthened his lead but lost it when George Englert slowed in turn three, again slowing the race under caution. Zimbardi pulled away at green with Collins second and Bova still third until lap eleven when caution flew again, this time for Dan Kuhn. Halfway had Zimbardi in a solid lead over Collins, Bova, Justin Barger, and Bryan Howland. At lap fifteen caution fell again for a spin with the top five still the same.
Barber got by Bova for third at lap sixteen. With five laps left, Darryl Ruggles came to a halt on the back straight, yet again slowing the race under yellow. Howland came to fourth on the first lap under green and Richardson followed him to fifth before the end of the lap. Pete Richardson and Dan Bennett spun in turn three with two laps left as rain began falling steadily. Richardson was able to continue but Bennett had enough damage to end his night.
Howland used the slide job to get to third at the end of the lap, then Barger spewed smoke in turn two coming to a halt, drawing another yellow. The one lap shootout was all Zimbardi with Collins and Howland side by side for second, Collins holding second by a slim margin. Joe Trenca was fourth with defending race winner Kyle Drum fifth.
The American Tour now heads to the Capital Region for Memorial Day Weekend making stops at Albany-Saratoga Speedway on Friday, May 26, and Saturday May 27 for two A-Verdi Storage Containers Holiday Bonus events. Be sure to log onto www.patriotsprinttour.com and to ‘Like’ Patriot Sprint Tour on facebook. You can also follow @PatriotSprints on Instagram and Twitter.
The 2017 Patriot Sprint Tour season is brought to you by; A-Verdi Storage Containers, Hoosier Racing Tires, Prestige Pool & Spa, Einstein Construction Group, Bonnell’s Auto Group, Evingham Site Excavation Mike Emhof Motorsports Inc, Super Gen Products with Champion Power Equipment, Patriot Tank Lines, Danny Willmes Enterprises, Casey’s Truck Salvage, Just Signs & Designs, Brodix Cylinder Heads, Sunoco Race Fuels, Insinger Performance, Shuttleworth Asphalt Sealing, ASI Racewear, Curtis Berleue Photography, Fine Touch Collison.
A-Verdi Storage Containers Patriot Sprint Tour Results-Raceway 7
Presented by Bonnell’s Collision Center
A-Verdi A-Main: 1) 35-JARED ZIMBARDI (2), 2) 67-Steve Collins 3) 51-Bryan Howland 4) 98-Joe Trenca 5) 47-Kyle Drum 6) 20b-Cody Bova 7) 80-Chris Steele 8)79-Jordan Thomas 9) 54j-Dave Just 10) 2-Steve Hutchinson Jr 11) 81-Derek Jonathan 12) 94k- Kevin Mingus 13) 17z-Josh Azzi 14) 67r- Pete Richardson 15) 5-Justin Barger 16) X-Dan Bennett 17) 48jr- Darryl Ruggles 18) 99k-Dan Kuhn 19) 27z- Adam Anderson 20) 11x- George Englert 21) 25g- Tyler Graves 22) 2L- Landon Lalonde
Heat 1: 1) 35-Jared Zimbardi, 2) 48jr- Darryl Ruggles 3) 5-Justin Barger 4) 54j- Dave Just 5) 25g- Tyler Graves 6) 94k-Kevin Mingus 7) 11x- George Englert 8) 27z-Adam Anderson
Heat 2: 1) 51-Bryan Howland 2) 98- Joe Trenca 4) 20b-Cody Bova 5) 79-Jordan Thomas 6) 47-Kyle Drum 7) 80-Chris Steele 8) 17z-Josh Azzi
Heat 3: 1) 67- Steve Collins 2) 2-Steve Hutchinson Jr 3) 81-Derek Jonathan 4) X-Dan Bennett 5) 2L-Landon Lalonde 6) 67r-Pete Richardson 7) 99k-Dan Kuhn
Shuttleworth’s Asphalt Sealing 11th place bonus: 81- Derek Jonathan
Prestige Pool & Spa Final Finisher: 67r- Pete Richardson
Casey’s Truck Salvage ‘Salvage of the Night:’ 47-Kyle Drum
PST American Tour Point Standings:
1)35- Jared Zimbardi (435) 2) 67- Steve Collins (410) 3) 98- Joe Trenca 4) 47-Kyle Drum (374) 5) 48jr- Darryl Ruggles (358) 6) 79- Jordan Thomas 7) 54j- David Just (337) 8) 81-Derek Jonathan (331) 9) 2- Steven Hutchinson Jr (327) 10) X- Dan Bennett (326) 11) 67r- Pete Richardson (326) 12) 17z- Josh Azzi (298)