2010-06-17 / Sports

Burkholder And Wahary With Breakthrough Wins At Path Valley

By Rob Keller

For what seems like the first time this year sunny skies and no chance of rain greeted the racers and fans as they came to Path Valley Speedway Friday night. And it was a solid turnout on both sides of the fence on Path Valley Family Restaurant Night.

The 600cc Micro Sprint feature started the night’s main events. Tyler Walton started on the pole and led every lap for his third win this year. In victory lane, Walton got to thank his wife, Lindsay, for the first time as his wife as they were married just a few weeks ago. Jim Young started fourth and was into second on lap one. Young kept Walton within a few car lengths but was not able to get any closer. Richie Fitz, substituting for Jesse Fitz, started and finished third. Jim Brookens came from 11th to finish fourth and Gary Funck finished fifth. Brookens and Stan Fleming won their heat races.

Frank Gordon started on the pole of the Mini Stock feature driving the only non- Ford in the event. With only one caution slowing the race on lap 12, Gordon led every lap for his second win this year. Gordon said in victory lane that he was surprised how well he ran because he normally does better on a hard, slick track and the track was smooth, tacky, and very fast. Ryan Laye ran second the entire race until slowing with mechanical woes with two laps to go. Kevin Thomas started 12th and took over second when Laye began to slow. Mark Grove finished third ahead of Leroy Long and Gary Dehart. Dehart and Dave Friedrich were the heat winners.

Levi Peck made it three in a row for the polesitters, leading every lap of the 270cc Micro Sprint feature for his second win in 2010. Although Peck was credited for leading every lap, Brian Marriott passed Peck for the lead on lap eight. But before they could get back to the finish line Marriott slowed and headed to the pits. Peck had one more challenge before it was over. Ryan McAndrew started 18th after dropping out of his heat race with a broken chain. Peck was leading and dealing with heavy lapped traffic and McAndrew was charging hard. With just a few laps remaining, McAndrew looked to go inside of Peck as they entered turn one. They made slight contact and McAndrew had to slow for just a moment to regain control. That gave Peck the advantage he needed as he won by just over a car length. Kevin Garman ran third the entire event, finishing ahead of Steve Whary, while Sean McAndrew came from 19th to finish fifth. Heat race wins went to Peck and Sean McAndrew.

Tim Burkholder made the switch from Mini Stocks to Late Models three years ago. Since then he has been struggling to find the same success he had in the past. Friday night Burkholder found victory lane for the first time as a Late Model driver. Burkholder started on the pole and led every lap. The only threat to his lead came on a restart on lap nine when Burkholder got sideways in turn four, but was able to regroup before Tim Fedder could make a move. The restart was following a caution caused by Roger Laughlin and Bob Dunn making contact and spinning on the backstretch while racing for second. Fedder finished second, Steve Bailor third, Dave Dunkle fourth and Laughlin in fifth. Bailor won the heat race.

It appeared the polesitter would win five in a row as Ryan Lynn led the first half of the PA Sprint Series 305 Sprint feature. But when Lynn slowed while trying to lap another car on lap 11, Steve Whary passed both of them on the backstretch to take the lead. Whary was in control the rest of the way, including a restart with two laps to go. This was Whary’s first win in the 305 Sprint division in only his second year of racing in that class. Lynn held on for second ahead of Gary Zimmerman, Ben Naugle and Rodney Westhafer. The heat win went to Tyler Bear.In the 4-Cylinder Thun- der Car feature it appeared the polesitter would again take the win as D.J. Keefer started first and led the first 15 laps. With Keefer leading, Tom Crum and Denny Scofield battled for the runner up spot. Crum finally cleared Scofield and began to reel in Keefer. After several failed attempts to take the lead, Crum made the winning move going high into turn one and then turning down underneath Keefer exiting turn two. The win is Crum’s third this year. Keefer finished second, Scofield third, Justin Rasp fourth and Bill Kennedy fifth. John Rasp won the heat race.

Path Valley Speedway returns to action next Friday night, June 18, with the Sidewinders and Legend Cars joining the four regular classes.

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