It’s been said that “luck is when opportunity meets preparation”, and Jesse Maurer was certainly prepared to seize the opportunity that came his way on Saturday night.
Maurer was in position to take advantage of an unfortunate situation involving the two lead cars, then zipped past Brian Kramer to take the top spot with seven to go. The Ephrata wheel-twister went on to win his third Hyper Racing 600 Sprint feature of the season at Lanco’s Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway.
Bradley Brown notched his fourth triumph of the year in the Viper Chassis 270 Sprints, Mike Kreiser also won his fourth of the season in the Sportsman feature, and the Brian brothers split a pair of victories as Marty (250cc Four-Strokes) and Cliff Jr. (125cc) both drove to the winner’s circle on Saturday.
This Saturday, September 14, is the regular season finale at the Clyde. It’s Championship Night, when the 2019 point champions will be crowned (although titles in two of the divisions were clinched on September 7). It is also Trick or Treat Night at the speedway as Halloween comes early. Younger fans are invited to come in costume and race teams are encouraged to hand out treats to the costumed fans who visit them in the pit area. There will also be a Wheelie Contest (the 2nd annual such event), with a $200 cash prize going to the winning wheel-stander. The runner-up in the contest will receive $100, while third place is worth $50. Gates open at 4:30, warm-ups begin at 6 p.m., and racing gets underway at 7:00.
Mike Rutherford carried a 28-point lead into Saturday’s Hyper Racing 600 Sprint main and, thanks to the drawing for number of cars to be inverted for the starting line up, Rutherford took the green from the inside of row one.
Rutherford led four-time winner Aaron Bollinger for the first 16 trips around the lightning-quick clay oval. He built a sizable advantage in the early going, only to have Bollinger close in as the duo caught the back of the field and dealt with lapped traffic. With 16 tours in the books, Bollinger attempted to slide Rutherford in turns three and four. The slide job did not work out, however, and Bollinger’s mount slid up and into Rutherford’s No. 2s, shoving Rutherford into the outside guardrail which launched it into a series of flips. Track officials put Bollinger to the rear and Rutherford’s machine was beaten, battered, and knocked out of the race.
Brian Kramer inherited the lead at that point, and Maurer was right behind him in second. Another yellow, with 18 complete, gave Maurer the opportunity he needed, as he grabbed the top spot, leaving Kramer to battle Heath Hehnly for the runner-up position.
At the finish, it was Maurer cashing in for his second straight winged 600 win at the Clyde (and third of the year), with Kramer holding off Hehnly for his best finish of the season. With his third place effort, Hehnly erased his 28-point deficit to Rutherford and ended up with a 24-point lead as they head into the September 14 regular season finale. If Hehnly finishes fifth or better on September 14, he will clinch his fourth consecutive (and eighth overall) 600cc championship at Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway.
Jarid Kunkle and 16th starter Ryan Groff finished fourth and fifth, respectively.
Saturday’s 600 Sprint heat wins went to Austin Quick and Brian Kramer.
New Providence, PA’s Bradley Brown started on the pole and led all the way to win his fourth Viper Chassis 270 Sprint main of the season. Third starter Andrew Dietrich jumped into the runner-up spot on the start but was no match for the high flying No. 19a driven by Brown.
Tajae Adams held off Mike Rutherford for third position for several laps until he was pinned behind a lapped car and Rutherford buzzed around him on the high side. Heath Hehnly got by Adams, too, and took over the fourth spot.
Brown waltzed to the win by nearly 1.5-seconds over Dietrich, with Rutherford, Hehnly, and Nick Skias rounding out the top five.
With his win, Brown chopped ten points off Rutherford’s lead in the championship standings. Brown now trails Rutherford by 59 points with just one point-paying race remaining. If Rutherford finishes 16th or better on Saturday, he will lock up an incredible eighth straight 270cc point title (and ninth overall) at the Clyde.
270 heat race victories went to N. Skias, Dan Lane Jr., and Kyler Heiney.
Mike Kreiser, from Jonestown, PA, just needed a good, solid finish on Saturday to put himself in the catbird’s seat for clinching his first Sportsman championship. Kreiser did even better than that, taking the lead on the original green flag and going on to record his fourth feature win of the year. In the process, he locked up the point title when second-in-points Clinton Hauser tangled with another car, had to restart from the back of the pack, and could only climb back to ninth at the checkered.
Nate Gibble fended off numerous challenges from Patrick Kirn to earn a hard fought runner-up finish, with Kirn, Jeremy Eisenhour, and Robert Shanaman making up the top five.
Brandon Gibble and Hauser won heat races for the Sportsman competitors.
Marty Brian, Ephrata, PA, had a virtual stranglehold on the 250cc Four-Stroke point crown even before Saturday’s feature went green. Taking the lead on lap ten, Brian put an exclamation point on his first Lanco championship by winning his ninth race of the season in dominating fashion over Tommy Phipps Jr., Alex Lukacs, Jessica Moore, and Dylan Yeingst.
M. Brian and Lukacs won Four-Stroke heats.
Not about to be outdone by his younger sibling, Cliff Brian Jr. gassed his No. 99 to the win in the 25-lap main for the 125cc Class. Brian led all the way after starting on the pole. Justin Harrington darted from fourth to second, snaring the runner-up slot on a restart prior to the halfway mark of the race. Brandon Gibble held third while Holden Eckman and AJ Gerhart diced for fourth.
As the checkered flag waved over the field, Cliff Brian Jr. danced to his seventh triumph of the year; once again reigning supreme with his Four-Stroke over the 125’s. Harrington chased him to the stripe, with B. Gibble third over Eckman and Mike Glass. Point leader Kerry Lengle ran a steady race to finish sixth. Lengle will carry a 91 point lead into the final point race this week, with Glass in the runner-up spot in the standings. All Lengle has to do is show up, sign in, and attempt to take the green in warm-ups in order to secure his first Lanco championship.
This Saturday, September 14, is the final point-paying event of the 2019 season at Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway. It is also Trick or Treat Night and there will be a wheelie contest at intermission. But the main focus will be on the point titles that have yet to be decided. Come on out and LIVE the excitement that is Lanco for the final point show of the season!
Richie Hartman Promotions will take over the track on Saturday, September 28, for the Weber’s Landscaping Firecracker 40 that was rained out on July 6. The wingless 600’s, winged 270’s, combined 125/Four-Strokes, and All Star Slingshots make up the menu for the program that is sure to provide a lot of on-track fireworks and heart-pounding action.
Hyper Racing 600 Sprints, 25 Laps: 1.Jesse Maurer, 2.Brian Kramer, 3.Heath Hehnly, 4.Jarid Kunkle, 5.Ryan Groff, 6.Austin Quick, 7.Chris Panczner, 8.Bradley Brown, 9.Chris Gerhart, 10.Holden Eckman, 11.Zach Light, 12.Aaron Bollinger, 13.Ryan Hook, 14.Chelsey Moore, 15.Jered Hook, 16.Jesse Snyder, 17.Brent Ely, 18.Mike Rutherford, 19.Will Urkuski.
Viper Chassis 270 Sprints, 25 Laps: 1.Bradley Brown, 2.Andrew Dietrich, 3.Mike Rutherford, 4.Heath Hehnly, 5.Nick Skias, 6.Tajae Adams, 7.Dan Lane Jr., 8.Brent Shearer, 9.Toby Blumenshine, 10.Mike Skias, 11.Corey Schmuck Jr., 12.Patrick Kirn, 13.Zak Vickers, 14.Trent Eberhart, 15.Jarrett Imler, 16.Jonah Meck, 17.Joshua Ohlinger, 18.Brittany Zeller, 19.Chase Walker, 20.Mike Uhrich, 21.Christi Sweigart, 22.Kyler Heiney, 23.Dave Labe, 24.Ray Ohlinger.
Sportsman Feature, 25 Laps: 1.Mike Kreiser, 2.Nate Gibble, 3.Patrick Kirn, 4.Jeremy Eisenhour, 5.Robert Shanaman, 6.Charles Hellinger, 7.Brandon Gibble, 8.RJ Rossi, 9.Clinton Hauser, 10.Dennis Fenstermacher, 11.Jamie Flickinger, 12.Steve Smith Sr., 13.Sam Borger. DNS: Michael Spadafora.
250cc Four-Stroke Feature, 25 Laps: 1.Marty Brian, 2.Tommy Phipps Jr., 3.Alex Lukacs, 4.Jessica Moore, 5.Dylan Yeingst, 6.Eddie Nocera, 7.Zachary Young, 8.Ron Wechter, 9.Riley Simmons, 10.Jenna Heagy, 11.Ron Young, 12.Jared St. John.
125cc Feature, 25 Laps: 1.Cliff Brian Jr., 2.Justin Harrington, 3.Brandon Gibble, 4.Holden Eckman, 5.Mike Glass, 6.Kerry Lengle, 7.Tyler Martin, 8.Kenny Bushey, 9.Chase Layser, 10.Kim Minzer, 11.Barbie Eichorn, 12.AJ Gerhart, 13.Jimmy Wampole, 14.Shane Davis.