Spence Wins Thrilling 270cc Main; Lane Nets 3rd Sportsman Victory; Coen Is 3-Time Winner in Four-Strokes
by BARRY ANGSTADT
Newmanstown, PA - Season Finale` Notebook...
*Ryan Groff, Manheim Pa., notched his first career 600cc Micro-Sprint victory on Saturday night at Lanco's Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway in the track's season finale`. The 2015 Rookie of the Year in the 600cc Class inherited the lead when front-runners Mike Rutherford and Will Urkuski were both penalized two positions for restart infractions. Groff led the final 13 circuits, narrowly holding off Kyle Spence who closed in on the final lap when the leader got hung up behind a bevy of lapped cars. Groff protected the bottom in turns three and four and held on to win over Spence and the 2016 point champion of the 600cc division, Heath Hehnly. Hehnly, also from Manheim, clinched the point title (his fifth in Lanco's 600cc Class) one week prior to the final event.
*Kyle Spence, from Bear, Delaware, won a thrilling 270cc Micro-Sprint main event on Saturday. On the last trip around the clay oval, with Dan Lane Jr. in front, runner-up Mike Rutherford attempted a slide job in turns one and two. Lane crossed over and shot back in front of Rutherford on the backstretch, but the move interrupted both drivers' momentum, allowing third place Spence to execute his own slider in turns three and four. Spence dove to the bottom and slid up in front of both Rutherford and Lane...just barely clearing Lane and thereby preventing him from turning back under Spence, who won the drag race to the checkered flag. It was the first winged victory for Gary Miller's new Hyper X7 chassis, although Spence did drive the car to a wingless triumph in Lanco's Labor Day Shootout on September 4. Rutherford, who finished third in Saturday's race, claimed his fifth consecutive 270cc point championship and sixth overall. He had clinched the title a week earlier.
*Lane, who is a student at West Chester University, captured his third win of the season in the Sportsman Micro-Sprint feature. On September 10, Lane clinched the 2016 Sportsman point championship, so Saturday's victory was icing on the cake for the driver from Elverson, Pa. Dave Ravel moved up to second in the final point standings with his runner-up finish in Saturday's 25-lap Sportsman main.
*Lebanon's Austin Graby gave away at least two wins in 125cc competition this season. On two occasions, Graby was leading the 125cc feature and appeared to have the race in the bag when mechanical gremlins forced him to fall out and (both times)handed the wins to William Manotti. On Saturday night, however, Graby earned some redemption, leading all the way to record his first-ever 125cc Micro-Sprint triumph at Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway. Manotti, who secured the 125cc point crown when he took the green flag to start the feature, finished second to Graby in the season finale` but the Lancaster driver was okay with that because it wrapped up his first track championship in the Kelly Cadillac No. 77.
*Shamokin's Mike Coen drove to his third victory of the year in the Sports n' Turf 250cc Four-Stroke feature. Coen took the lead on lap seven when Cliff Brian Jr. suddenly slowed and second place Kassidy Michael was trapped behind Brian for almost three-quarters of a lap. Michael finally tried to pass Brian's ailing car but hopped over his left-rear tire. The damage resulting from the contact caused Michael to retire from the race and end her hopes of catching Jarrett Imler in the points chase. Imler held a 29-point lead over Michael heading into the final race, and Kassidy's DNF (and 15th place finish) allowed Imler to run stress-free to a second place finish behind Coen in Saturday's Four-Stroke feature. It is the first point title for the teenager from Leola.
*With the racing season now complete, attention turns to this Saturday's practice session and the November 19 Awards Banquet. This week's practice will run from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and is open to all of the Clyde's weekly divisions. Ticket order forms for the Banquet will be posted on the club's website (www.clydemartinspeedway.com), along with all of the details regarding the Awards gala.
600cc Micro-Sprint Feature, 25 laps: 1.Ryan Groff, 2.Kyle Spence, 3.Heath Hehnly, 4.Mike Rutherford, 5.Will Urkuski, 6.Chris Panczner, 7.Shaun Brandel, 8.TJ Greve Jr., 9.Bradley Brown, 10.Brent Ely, 11.Zach Light, 12.Chris Gerhart, 13.Greg Stevens, 14.Jered Hook, 15.Brooklyn Gable, 16.Ryan Hook, 17.Kelby Stauffer, 18.Jason Sechrist, 19.Kory Merkey, 20.Bruce Ginther Jr., 21.Rebecca LaMothe, 22.Nash Ely, 23.Taylor Troxel, 24.Kassidy Michael.
DNQ: Patrick Ely, Mark Berkenstock, Danny Stratton.
270cc Micro-Sprint Feature, 25 laps: 1.Kyle Spence, 2.Dan Lane Jr., 3.Mike Rutherford, 4.Mike Miller, 5.Mike Skias, 6.Nick Skias, 7.Nick Sweigart, 8.Toby Blumenshine, 9.Heath Hehnly, 10.Billy Logeman, 11.Andrew Dietrich, 12.Dustin Fox, 13.Richie Hartman, 14.Tyler Ulrich, 15.Brent Shearer, 16.Mike Uhrich, 17.Christi Sweigart, 18.Brian Sholley, 19.Jeff Harnish, 20.Daryl Davis, 21.Luis Gonzalez, 22.Jason Swavely, 23.Jarid Kunkle, 24.Anthony Yerger.
DNQ: Bradley Brown.
Sportsman Micro-Sprint Feature, 25 laps: 1.Dan Lane Jr., 2.David Ravel, 3.Tyler Ulrich, 4.Sheena Schaefer, 5.Lee Reinhardt, 6.Tyler Reinhardt, 7.Dave Schroeder, 8.Robert Shanaman, 9.Alan Durham, 10.Louie Kirn, 11.Kane Rogers, 12.Brian Kramer, 13.Alex Funari, 14.Anthony Yerger, 15.Toby Blumenshine, 16.Nick Skias, 17.Ricky Sechrist, 18.Mike Miller, 19.Ava Bellinger, 20.Wesley Fasnacht, 21.Patrick Kirn, 22.Cameron Bellinger, 23.Michael Kreiser, 24.Sami Schenck.
DNQ: Katelin Vragovich, Austin Graby, Dennis Fenstermacher.
125cc Micro-Sprint Feature, 25 laps: 1.Austin Graby, 2.William Manotti, 3.Justin Harrington, 4.Kory Merkey, 5.Kyler Heiney, 6.Jason Hehnly, 7.Brandon Gibble, 8.Corey Schmuck Jr., 9.Shane Davis, 10.Brian Kramer, 11.Jas Hehnly, 12.Walt Wampole, 13.Alex Funari, 14.Jimmy Wampole, 15.Tyler Hershey, 16.Cody Hibshman, 17.Brandon Stuck.
Sports n' Turf 250cc Four-Stroke Micro-Sprint Feature, 25 laps: 1.Mike Coen, 2.Jarrett Imler, 3.Dave Williams, 4.Aidan Jones, 5.Andrew Potts, 6.Lewis Kepple Jr., 7.Ron Zimmerman, 8.Ron Wechter, 9.Brandon Yoder, 10.Zachary Young, 11.Kyle Spence, 12.Eddie Nocera, 13.Zak Vickers, 14.Cliff Brian Jr., 15.Kassidy Michael.