Keller Sweeps Twin 25′s
Chris Keller made a clean sweep of the Oakshade Raceway Sportsman Twin 25′s on Saturday night with impressive wins in both 25-lap feature events.
Last week’s Sportsman feature winner, Bruce Stuart, started on the pole and led the first half of the race. An incident that involved Billy Brown and Bob Krumm on the backstretch brought out the caution flag on lap nine. Keller was third on the restart behind race leader Bruce Stuart and Mike Jessen. A few laps later, Keller took the lead and didn’t look back as he went on to pick up his first feature win of the year. Stuart finished second with Tim Fisher in third after starting 15th. Tim Line and Joe Derbeck rounded out the rest of the top five finishers.
The Sportsmen drivers would then got a break before the second 25-lap feature as the UMP Late Model and Bomber A Main were run before they came back on the track.
J.R. Hotovy grabbed the early lead in the UMP Late Model feature, but pole-sitter Casey Noonan battled back and after a couple laps of side by side racing, Noonan finally took the top spot. After stretching out a bit of the lead over the rest of the field, Noonan began to feel pressure from Jon Henry who had closed in by lap 14. Henry assumed the lead just as the caution flag flew for an incident involving Dan Wallace on lap 19. Rusty Schlenk worked his way up to the second position by lap 20 after starting 16th, but Henry was able to fend him off to pick up his fourth Oakshade feature win of the year. Schlenk settled for second ahead of Noonan, Hotovy and Josh Scott.
Next on the track was the UMP Bomber A Main. Jeff Foks Jr. celebrated the birth of his daughter earlier in the week and led most of the feature race after starting on the pole. Last week’s A Main winner Danny Hogrefe spun on lap six to bring out the first yellow flag of the race. Bomber point leader Jim Scout worked up to second by lap nine and then closed in on Foks.
Scout got to the inside of Foks with just two laps to go, but a crazy series of events on the final lap completely changed the complexion of the race. The caution flag flew for a debris on the track and at the same time, Jeff Foks and Jim Scout both spun entering turn three. Also caught up in the incident was the third place car of Tony Tolles. All three had to restart at the tail. Terry Rushlow suddenly found himself as the leader, but Chris Henry took the lead on the backstretch on the final lap. Rushlow battled back to his inside in turn four and won the drag race back to the checkered flag to pick up his first feature win of the year. Henry finished second and Jeff Geis closed to within 13 points on Jim Scout in the point standings with his third place finish. Curt Lancaster was fourth with Adam Noonan finishing fifth.
The UMP Sportsman were set to battle for another 25 laps next and Chris Keller had drawn for 10 cars to be inverted for the start, which meant he would be starting in the middle of the field. The invert put Rusty Smith on the pole and he took advantage by leading the first eight laps of the race. Keller marched all the way up to second by lap six. Mike Jessen spun on lap eight to bring out the caution flag and Keller took the lead just after the restart. He began to open up his lead, but another spin by James Fox tightened up the field on lap 19. Point leader Tim Line got to restart in second right behind Keller, but Keller was able to hang on to win his second feature of the night. Line was second followed by Tim Fisher, Bruce Stuart and Bob Gregory.
Derek Morris continued his dominant streak in the Oakshade Hornet class with his third feature win in a row to close to within 29 points on Drew Smith in the point standings. Morris started on the outside of the front row and led the entire distance with Smith settling for second. Brandon Myers, “Sparky Marky” Gillingham and Logan Hough had a good battle for third with Gillingham coming out on top to finish third. Hough was fourth and Myers ended up fifth.
Great feature racing action continued with the UMP Bomber B Main that featured Karl Spoores, Chuck Leininger and Kyle Light three-wide for the lead on the first lap. Spoores eventually came out on top of that battle and Light ended up spinning on lap six to bring out a caution. Spoores held on to win his first feature of the year followed by Jim Remley, Chris Dachenhaus, Steve Morris and Chuck Leininger.
Fred Burtch held off an early challenge from Josh Sisty in the UMP Bomber C Main, but that victory was short-lived. Mark Shultz drew a caution flag on lap two after stopping on the track. Sisty took advantage and snatched the lead away from Burtch on the restart. Sisty opened up a bit of the lead, but Burtch began to chip away at it and reeled in Sisty on the final lap. Sisty was able to hang on to pick up the victory with Burtch finishing a close second. Tommy Wilhelm was third followed by Craig Holland and Tim McNicol.
Oakshade Raceway continues to be the best value for your racing dollar with the American Late Model Series event highlighting the August 6th racing program. $2,000 will be awarded to the Late Model feature winner. UMP Sportsmen, UMP Bombers and Hornets will also be in action. Gates will open at 4pm with racing at 7pm.