Sixty late models showed up to contend for the $2000 to win American Late Model Series racing program at Oakshade Raceway Saturday night. The third of four ALMS visits to the track this summer turned out some extremely exciting racing all night long.
An excellent battle for the lead in the second late model heat between Jerry Bowersock and Shane Yoder proved to be somewhat of a preview of the ALMS 30 lap feature.
Bowersock did win his heat and took the lead at the start of the feature after starting on the outside of the front row. Yoder, on the other hand, had to start 12th in the middle of the field of 23 cars.
Justin Paxton had some bad luck on lap seven when he spun out in turn two while running in third forcing him to restart at the back of the pack.
One third of the way through the race, Yoder had worked his way up to fourth. He then quickly got by Rick Delong and Randy Woodling for second and began to reel in race leader Jerry Bowersock.
The ALMS points leader, Kris Patterson, worked his way up to the top five and then spun in turn one on lap 20 bringing out the yellow and putting him at the back. Shortly after the restart, Patterson spun out again, and because of the “two yellows and you are out rule” at Oakshade, Patterson was sent to the pits with 21 cars still on the track.
After the restart, Yoder and Bowersock battled for the lead with Yoder, the 2002 Oakshade Late Model Champion, taking the lead on lap 24 and went on to win his first feature of the year at Oakshade. Bowersock finished second followed by Randy Woodling, Rody Schroyer, Todd Schroyer and Justin Paxton.
Jaci Sheldrick, Steve Kester and Bill Huston got all crossed up in turn one on the first lap of the sportsman feature eliminating all three drivers.
On the restart, Devin Shiels, who was the winner two weeks ago, grabbed the lead and proceeded to open up a big advantage on the rest of the field.
About halfway through the race, Jeremy Grover spun while battling for second bringing out the yellow flag. Then a lap later, the caution came out for a car that hit the wall, and while under caution, Grover’s car burst into flames, ending his night.
Joe Derbeck finished second behind Shiels with Brad Kendall taking third.
Chuck Leininger led from start to finish in the bomber A Main, the first of four bomber features on the night.
James Scout moved around Dan Dippman to finish a close second. Dippman finished third followed by Brice Luttrell and Troy Wickman.
George Laney led a three-car breakaway consisting of himself, Mitch Betz and Randy Miller in front of the bomber B Main. Miller tried to get by Betz for second, but as the two of them battled side by side, Laney opened up a big lead and went on to win.
Betz finished second followed by Miller, Billy Ruff and Josh Steinacker.
Jeff Foks looked to be on his way to win the bomber C Main until Joe Wohlgamuth began to close in. Then with just two laps to go, Wohlgamuth took the lead as Foks suffered mechanical problems and fell off the pace.
That gave a second place finish to Karl Spores and Gary Schaffer finished third.
Luke Huff was leading the bomber D Main when a lapped car spun in front of him and the two came together. Huff was able to keep his car going and yellow flag that came out for debris saved the lead for him.
Unfortunately for Huff, Mark Labean quickly closed in on the leader and took over the top spot on lap seven and went on to pick up the victory with Huff finishing second. Gene Zollner finished third just ahead of Rich Risner who was penalized two positions for jumping the last restart.
This coming Saturday night, Oakshade Raceway will feature more great racing action with late models, sportsman and bombers.