Tom Umbenhauer was beginning to doubt himself at Grandview Speedway, Bechtelsville, because every-time he was leading a feature or having a decent run, something would happen and he'd never finish. Saturday night Lady Luck helped the Richland, Pa. campaigner break the jinx and he led from the drop of the green until the wave of the checkered to win his first career 30-lap NASCAR All-American Whelen Racing Series modified feature by a healthy margin over runner-up Jeff Strunk. The event was sponsored and televised by RCN TV-4.Before the first lap could be completed Jeremy Banos, the polesitter, got sideways, continued but caused the cars behind him to spin.
On the restart Umbenhauer wasted no time putting the Miller Builders/Clay Realty Group, Inc. #19 at the head of the pack trailed by Todd Marburger, Banos, Meme DeSantis and Terry Meitzler.
DeSantis and Meitzler advanced to second and third on the fourth lap to see if they could overtake Umbenhauer.
The field was regrouped for a first turn multi-car tangle that brought out the yellow on the ninth lap. Umbenhauer was still the pacesetter when action resumed, but now the order behind him was comprised of DeSantis, Jason Hamilton, Doug Manmiller and Meitzler. Fast approaching the top five to join the thick of the battle was Strunk.
By the 16th lap Umbenhauer had a comfortable lead built up over DeSantis, Manmiller, Strunk and Hamilton.
With two laps to go Strunk overtook DeSantis for second and set sail after Umbenhauer.
Time ran short and no one was able to close in on Umbenhauer to challenge him as he continued into the winner's circle to claim a crowd-pleasing well-deserved first victory. Chasing Umbenhauer across the line were Strunk, Manmiller, DeSantis and Meitzler. Rounding out the top ten were Hamilton, Sean Merkel, Jon Kellner, Shawn Reimert and Jon Kellner Jr., who was also the recipient of the Cornerstone Auto Sales Hard Charger Award.
Todd Smith, Umbenhauer, who also received the Dan's Deli 1/2-way leader Hoagie Award; DeSantis and Kevin Hirthler won the heats. The consies were won by Reimert and Tommy Scheetz Jr.
Stoudt scores 2 in a row
It appeared that rookie racer Danny Snyder was going to claim his first 20-lap NASCAR late model feature, but veteran campaigner Randy Stoudt had other visions. With two laps to go R. Stoudt, who didn't have power steering half-way through the race, muscled his way past Snyder and put the Merkel-owned #118 into victory lane for the second week in a row.
Snyder was the early pace-setter on the initial start followed by Wayne Pfeil, Rick Todorow, Bryon Sipe and Kyle Merkel.
By the Dan's Deli 1/2-way Hoagie Award mark, the running order was comprised of Snyder, Pfeil, Merkel, Todorow and R. Stoudt.
The comfortable lead Snyder built up was erased when Harry Henning III spun for the second time in turn two bringing out the yellow with 16 laps completed. Snyder held onto the lead when action resumed, but now R. Stoudt was in the runner-up spot pressuring him.
With two laps remaining R. Stoudt overtook Snyder and went on to chalk up his fifth win of the season and his 47th career win followed by Snyder, Merkel, Todorow and Pfeil. Sixth through 10th were Ron Kline, Chuck Schutz, Buddy Wharton, Sipe and Brian Shuey.
Heats were won by Snyder, Mike Kellner and Kline.