Tim Buckwalter, an ARDC midget racing standout has won several midget features at Grandview Speedway, but he had never won a 30-lap NASCAR Whelen All-American Series 358 Modified feature until Saturday night in the activities sponsored by Hatfield Quality Meats and televised by RCN-TV 4. Point leader Randy Stoudt topped the field in the 25-lap BRC Late Model feature race while Jared Umbenhauer continued his record setting pace winning the 25-lap Sportsman feature race for his ninth win of the season.
NASCAR stock car racing returns to Grandview Speedway on Saturday, July 26 with the Atlas Paving Co. Night featuring the Pepsi-Bashore Challenge, one on one Modified racing, along with the regular NASCAR 358 Modified, BRC Late Model and Sportsman racing action at 7:30 p.m. When spectator gates open at 5:30 p.m. fans are invited to the weekly Low Down and Dirty Meet & Greet featuring Modified standout Duane Howard along with father and son Late Model racers Lou Egrie Sr.& Jr.
Buckwalter, the 2013 Modified rookie, teamed up with Jerry and Linda Rogue for the season to drive their No. 22. Several weeks ago after the car was destroyed when Duane Howard landed on top of his car in the homestretch melee, the team took some time off, got a new frame and returned to action. They struggled a while, but had the car in top notch running order on Saturday night and his “dream finally came true” – he got to victory lane in the division. He thanked all his sponsors for sticking with them and making everything possible. He now has three more wins to go to tie his father Rick in the career win list. The Royersford racer collected a $2,900 payday which included $250 from T.P. Trailers and a $150 product award from VP Racing Fuels.
Allentown radio personality Bobby Gunther Walsh led for the first ten laps before Kyle Weiss spun in the second turn for the first caution. On the restart Buckwalter put the H.G. Associates powered mount at the head of the pack.
Buckwalter quickly built up a comfortable margin by the Dan’s Deli ½-way leader bonus over second through fifth-place runners Gunther Walsh, Jon Kellner, Mike Laise and Jordan Umbenhauer.
Four-time feature winner Doug Manmiller spun in the fourth turn for the second and final caution on the 20th lap to erase Buckwalter’s commanding lead. Buckwalter hung tough and held onto the lead when action resumed, but now Kellner, Umbenhauer, Craig VonDohren and Laise were in pursuit. Trying to get into a top five spot was last week’s feature winner Duane Howard and he did on the 23rd lap.
Kellner and VonDohren battled for second for four laps before VonDohren finally cleared him with one lap to go.
Buckwalter kept all challengers behind him and went on to score a crowd-pleasing triumph. Chasing him across the line were VonDohren, Kellner, Umbenhauer and Howard. Rounding out the top ten were Jeff Strunk, Laise, Nate Christman, Mike Gular, coming from the 21st spot and Frank Cozze. Todd Smith received the Cargo Trailers product gift certificate.
Buckwalter, Laise, Ray Swinehart and Don Norris Jr. were the heat winners. After winning the third heat, Swinehart’s engine erupted and he was finished for the night. Consolation race victories went to Terry Meitzler and Gular. There were 34 Modifieds on hand trying for one of the 28 feature starting spots.
Randy Stoudt, the all-time leading late model feature winner, won his third 25-lap NASCAR BRC feature of the season behind the wheel of the Taylor White and Wanda Brown-owned No. 22 and picked up an additional $100 from T.P. Trailers for his efforts.
Rookie and polesitter Cory Merkel took the early lead at the drop of the green trailed by Lou Egrie Jr., Joe Fanelli, Kory Fleming and bill Henning.
Fleming advanced to second on the fifth lap to challenge C. Merkel for the top spot.
C. Merkel was able to hold off Fleming’s bids until the Dan’s Deli ½-way leader mark when Fleming charged past him.
One lap later Stoudt moved into the runner-up spot and began challenging Fleming for first.
Stoudt moved to the outside lane coming off the fourth turn on the 19th circuit and was successful in becoming the new leader.
While Stoudt showed the way around the 1/3-mile banked clay oval, the battle for positions brewed between Fleming, Wayne Pfeil, Dan Green and Chuck Schutz, last week’s feature winner.
With three to go Pfeil made his way into second and took chase after teammate Stoudt.
It was Stoudt, who calls Pottstown home, leading the rest of the way as Pfeil, Fleming, Green and Schutz chased him across the line. Sixth through tenth were Jason Miller, Sean Merkel, Lou Egrie, C. Merkel and Rick Todorow.
S. Merkel and Lou Egrie Jr. won the heats.
The ninth win for Jared Umbenhauer didn’t come easy as he beat Kenny Gilmore by inches in the 25-lap NASCAR Sportsman feature in which he also received an extra $100 from T.P. Trailers.
Joe Masiado set the pace for two laps before rookie Brett Gilmore took the top spot and checked out.
The battle for the remaining spots was hot and heavy between Masiado, Sean Weiss, Tom “Elvis” Miller and Mike Lisowski.
Ryan Lilick brought out the first yellow when he spun in the second turn. It was still B. Gilmore, running the outside, ahead on the restart, but now Miller, in the low groove, was in pursuit of the lead.
Miller became the new leader at the Dan’s Deli ½ leader mark, but B. Gilmore stayed right with him trying to regain the top spot.
The yellow was thrown on the 16th lap for Brett Kressley stopped in the fourth turn with a flat left rear tire. He rejoined the pack after a quick pit stop. Umbenhauer, who overtook second the previous lap, moved into first when Miller suddenly slowed his pace and brought out the yellow on lap 18. The leader continued to be Umbenhauer on the restart, but now Kenny Gilmore overtook his son Brett to set his sights on Umbenhauer.
Umbenhauer and K. Gilmore put on quite a battle for the lead as K. Gilmore would nose ahead, but could never lead a lap as Umbenhauer was always in front at the line. B. Gilmore, Paul Kline and Brian Hirthler were dicing for third through fifth.
Coming in for the checkered K. Gilmore made one last charge, but it was Richland, PA’s Umbenhauer the victor in the Bashore-owned No. 5 by 0.037 seconds. It appeared B. Gilmore would have his best finish of the season in third, but was denied the chance as he found himself turned around in the fourth turn with Kressley and Jordan Henn also involved as they had nowhere to go to avoid the mishap. Hirthler, who was running fifth, managed to avoid contact and finish third followed by Lisowski and Brandon Whitmoyer. Kline, fourth at the time of B. Gilmore’s spun, managed to get sixth followed by Dean Bachman, Ryan Beltz, Erik Renninger and Ken Eckert Jr.
Heats were won by Miller, Masiado and Lisowski. Eckert Jr. won the consi.
PIT NOTE: With rain falling as close as Oley, officials and racers worked together to speed the events along and had the entire 15 event show completed before 10:30 p.m.
Hatfield Quality Meats Modified Feature (30 Laps): 1. Tim Buckwalter, 2. Craig VonDohren, 3. Jon Kellner, 4. Jordan Umbenhauer, 5. Duane Howard, 6. Jeff Strunk, 7. Mike Laise, 8. Nate Christman, 9. Mike Gular, 10. Frank Cozze, 11. Todd Smith, 12. Chris Esposito, 13. Jarred Miller, 14. Terry Meitzler, 15. Doug Manmiller, 16. Kyle Weiss, 17. Don Norris Jr., 18. Ryan Kunkle, 19. Bobby Gunther Walsh, 20. Kyle Borror, 21. Eric Biehn (alternate), 22. Chris Gambler, 23. Justin Grim, 24. Mike Kellner, 25. Andy Ressler, 26. Kevin Hirthler, 27. Brian Houseknecht, 28. Tommy Scheetz, alternate. DNQ: Ryan Grim, John Willman, Ron Seltmann Jr. and Kevin Hartnett.
Hatfield Quality Meats BRC Late Model Feature (25 Laps): 1. Randy Stoudt, 2. Wayne Pfeil, 3. Kory Fleming, 4. Dan Green, 5. Chuck Schutz, 6. Jason Miller, 7. Sean Merkel, 8. Lou Egrie, 9. Cory Merkel, 10. Rick Todorow, 11. Joe Fanelli, 12. Lou Egrie Jr., 13. John Giesler, 14. Bill Henning, 15. Steve Wilson, 16. Buddy Mertz, 17. Dave Ogin. DNS: Tony Giglio.
Hatfield Quality Meats Sportsman Feature (25 Laps): 1. Jared Umbenhauer, 2. Kenny Gilmore, 3. Brian Hirthler, 4. Mike Lisowski, 5. Brandon Whitmoyer, 6. Paul Kline, 7. Dean Bachman, 8. Ryan Beltz, 9. Erik Renninger, 10. Ken Eckert Jr., 11. Jim Housworth, 12. Doug Snyder, 13. Ryan Lilick, 14. Guy Germano, 15. Sean Weiss, 16. Jason Neidlinger, 17. Brett Gilmore, 18. Brett Kressley, 19. Jordan Henn, 20. Mark Behm, 21. Tom Miller, 22. Joe Masiado, 23. Joe Funk II, 24. Craig Whitmoyer. DNQ: Lex Shive, Kevin Dries, Josh Adams, Jamie Undercoffler.