MECHANICSBURG, PA – Aaron Ott held off a hard-charging Danny Dietrich to score the 410 Sprint car win Friday night at Williams Grove Speedway.
Meanwhile, in the first ASCS race ever held at the famed speedway, it was five-time Grove track champion Greg Hodnett starting on the pole and leading all 25 laps in night number one of the “Battle of the Groves.”
In the 410 feature, Anthony Marci started second and drove into the lead over Chad Trout and Ott, who advanced from his sixth starting spot in the opening lap.
Dietrich was quickly moving forward on a tricky racing surface from his 10th starting spot. He was into the top five by the third lap. Another pass moved Dietrich to fourth as the leaders reached lapped traffic.
With Macri in control, Ott drove by Trout and into second with 10 laps completed. Macri’s lead was around a second as they reached the half-way point.
Macri scraped the fence as he tried to lap a car. Ott drove by and into the lead. Macri’s great run came to an end with 14 laps completed when he stopped in turn four with a flat right rear tire.
“I was reeling him in,” Ott said. “He was running around the top. He was in the predicament that I was at the end of the race. You just don’t know where to go. If you’re not searching and moving around, you’re going to lose these races because there are too many good cars and too many good drivers here.”
“He might have had a tire going down. I crowded him off two, but I figured that was my only chance. I don’t know if he got sucked into the fence and that ultimately cut his tire. He’s been doing a tremendous job. We had a new car tonight and changed some things and I think we’re on to something. Circumstances certainly played in our favor.”
Ott controlled the restart. Dietrich blasted under Trout as they raced into turn three taking second with seven laps to go.
Ott reached slower cars with a few laps left allowing Dietrich to close. Dietrich drove as hard as he could trying the outside line, but fell a few car lengths short at the checkers.
“I could hear him out there,” Ott said. “I was just biding my time. I wasn’t really sure where to go in three and four. I was pretty good in one and two. At that point, it was my race to lose. Everybody knows Danny is going to do everything he can to put a show on and get the job done.”
Ott, of East Berlin, earned $4,000 for his eighth career Grove win.
Alan Krimes, Trout, and Rodney Westhafer completed the top five. James McFadden, Greg Hodnett, TJ Stutts, Lucas Wolfe and Brian Montieth rounded out the top 10.
Trout, Macri and Logan Wagner won the heat races.
Sprint Car Feature (25 laps): 1. Aaron Ott. 2. Danny Dietrich. 3. Alan Krimes. 4. Chad Trout. 5. Rodney Westhafer. 6. James McFadden. 7. Greg Hodnett. 8. TJ Stutts. 9. Lucas Wolfe. 10. Brian Montieth. 11. Freddie Rahmer. 12. Logan Wagner. 13. Brock Zearfoss. 14. Ryan Smith. 15. Cory Haas. 16. Ryan Taylor. 17. Anthony Fiore. 18. Jim Shuster. 19. Joe Trenca. 20. Troy Fraker. 21. Anthony Macri. 22. Jordan Givler. 23. Steve Buckwalter. 24. Brandon Rahmer. DNS – Nicole Bower.