2010-09-30 / Sports

Season Winding Down At Path Valley Speedway

By Rob Keller

Only three more pointpaying races remain for the Friday night competitors at Path Valley Speedway.

In the 600cc Micro Sprint feature Tyler Walton of Mifflintown, Pa., wired the field, starting first and leading all 20 laps for his eighth win at Path Valley in 2010. Jim Brookens returned from a violent flip just one week ago to finish second. Zach Newlin and John Baker put in solid performances, finishing third and fourth. Jesse Fitz rounded out the top five.

When Keith Walls suffered a mechanical failure on the initial start, Gary Dehart inherited the pole-position for the restart. Dehart led the field for the first eight laps, until Frank Gordon used the high groove to drive around Dehart exiting turn two. Gordon, of Ft. Loudon, led the remaining laps to win his sixth Mini Stock feature, the most of any driver this year. Gary Newell passed Dehart on the final lap to finish second. Also on the final lap, Mark Grove passed Leroy Long to get fourth.

Rick Miller of Spring Grove started first in the Legend Car feature and led the first three laps. Harlon Leppo passed Miller for the lead on lap 4, just before the second of three cautions. On the restart, a scramble ensued in turns 1 and 2 and Miller came out of the pack with the lead. The top five stayed nearly bumper-tobumper to the finish and Miller held off Bill Diehl to claim his first feature win ever in a Legend Car. Lucas Montgomery finished third, Leppo fourth and Josh Morrow fifth.

Compared to the past few seasons 2010 has been a struggle for Steve Harlan at Path Valley. Harlan of East Waterford had been kept winless in the Super Stock division until Friday night. Harlan started first, took the lead at the drop of the green and led all 20 laps for the win. Just by looking at the stat sheet you would think it was an easy win. But Gary Dehart kept pressure on Harlan the entire race. Dehart pulled alongside Harlan several times, but he could not find enough traction to complete the pass, coming home second. Adam Imes passed Mike Saylor for third on lap 15, as those two are in a tight battle for the point championship.

Levi Peck of Orrstown and Bryce Stevens started first and second in the 270cc Micro Sprint feature and they stayed that way, bumper-to-bumper, for most of the race. In the closing laps, Peck pulled away by a few car lengths, and Stevens lost the second spot to Sean McAndrew on lap 19. The win was Peck’s fifth of the year, and he gained a few points on leader Ryan McAndrew, who finished fourth.

Justin Rasp of Mc- Connellsburg dominated the 4-Cylinder Thunder Car feature, passing polesitter Randy Stull as they completed lap one and leading all 20 laps. Justin had to hold off a late race charge by his father, John, who was less than a car length behind at the finish. The win is his eighth this year, including four on Saturday nights. D.J. Keefer passed Tom Crum on lap 18 to finish third. Keefer and Crum are separated by less than 10 points for the championship.

Mini Stock driver Gary Newell’s wife, Barbara, passed away earlier this week after battling cancer. In a show of support, the other Mini Stock drivers went through the general admission and pit area collecting donations.

Friday, October 1, the racing action will be highlighted by the annual Wes Scofield Memorial race for 4-Cylinder Thunder Cars and Mini Stocks. 270cc and 600cc Micro Sprints will also be on the schedule, along with Late Models and 305 Sprint Cars.

Return to top