Jun 9, 2012 11:23 PM EDT
Chris Daugherty Sweeps Weekend at Black Rock
Wonderling, Fisher and Yaw Win in Photo-Finishes
On a night that was not even on the schedule a week ago, Daugherty, driving his own No. 22JZ sportsman for the first time at Black Rock Speedway, was shaky in hot laps but dominated his heat and then dominated the feature for a very satisfying win.
Nicole Hoag led the field to green but Daugherty quickly jumped to the race lead and held a comfortable distance over Ross Vleck until lap five, when the leaders quickly chased down a lapped car. Daugherty made significant contact with the lapped machine, spinning him out and drawing the caution, but the damage would not impair his ability going forward.
Daugherty was perfect on all subsequent restarts and would claim the win by a healthy margin; the battles for the remaining spots were much more hotly contested. Ross Vleck would hold off Loren Lincoln for second. Brady Fultz and AJay Potzrebowski would drive from deep in the pack to round out the top five.
In their only appearance at Black Rock in a six week period, the late models put on a race to remember, as Brian Knowles, Mike Wonderling Sr., Jeremy Wonderling and John Waters in one tightly-wound pack with a thrilling run to the finish.
Brian Knowles lead the first 17 laps, most of the time just ahead of Mike Wonderling Sr., but with three laps left to go Knowles slipped up just enough off of turn four to allow Wondelring to lead the lap at the line. They would remain side-by-side however, and it was anyone’s guess who would win at that point. When they worked off the fourth corner for the final time though, it was Wonderling who would steal the win by a half-car length.
“That was side-by-side for 20 laps,” reflected the patriarch of the Scio Speed Society in Victory Lane. “When they threw the white flag I thought it was a caution. I couldn’t believe it was the last lap at that point, I didn’t even had a chance to look at the podium to see who was back there.”
The lead foursome was side-by-side in two rows for much of the caution-free event, including on the final two circuits around. The action incredibly clean and extremely spirited.
As Wonderling stole the win, “Porkchop” Brian Knowles would have to settle for second, while Jeremy Wonderling was third. John Waters, who had won the previous three events at BRS this season, was close in-tow for fourth. Jason Knowles was able to finish with a top five.
The street stocks had a very similar feature, as their 20 lap event also ran caution-free and had a incredibly intense finish. Larry Fenton Jr., who was in search of his first career win, led from the drop of the green flag but was hounded by defending champion Chris Fisher by lap eight. As Fisher stayed glued to the back of the No. 55, current point leader Bob Buono closed in to make it a three car scramble. Fisher kept trying to peek to the inside of Fenton but to no avail for 10 laps, but coming off the final corner he got just enough momentum off the bottom of the track to steal the win away at the line.
After the event, Fisher admitted that winning never gets old, and that even though he hated to take Fenton’s first win away, he had to make him earn it like the pilot of the No. 37 did years ago.
Fenton would hold on for second while Buono was third. Curt Stebbins made an impressive run up to fourth, just getting by Chuck Winslow at the end, who rounded out the top five.
The IMCA Modifieds also had a thrilling finish, with Phil Yaw scoring his first career win in the division by no more than three inches over Rich Karlnoski.
Karlnoski took the early advantage, and once Yaw moved in to second he tried everything he could to close in on the No. 55x. After the only caution flag came out on lap 15, Yaw knew that the leader would stay on the bottom and thus he had to try out the top groove. His risk paid off as he made a run to the top and the duo engaged in an intense battle to the finish, with Yaw driving straight off the track in turn one after staying in the gas through the line.
Dave Yehl was a strong third in the feature, with Jared Spaulding getting in front of Bruce Tinsley on the back end of the top five.
The race track was once again terrific, but the slick surface did not have a dominating cushion on the night, which heading in to the Signs Plus of Kanona 4-Cylinder race did not favor Rich Sharpsteen II. The winner from Friday Night found a way to make it work though as he held off a hard-charging James Kreidler and Chad Ayers to score the win.
Ayers was peaking to the inside of the “Flyin’ X” late in the race, but when Kreidler took second away, it gave Sharpsteen some some breathing room for his third win at his hometown track this year.
Kreidler would cross in second for the second time of the weekend, while Ayers, Scott Bradley and Joe Povoski were the top five.
In the final race of the night, Wesley Hotelling won a thrilling in the FWD 4-Cylinders, moving in front of Josh Sharpsteen at halfway and steadily increasing his lead to the finish.
For the third time in a week, the monster trucks of Equalizer, Aftershock, Krazy Train and Hot Tamale put on a thrilling show in the infield. Also for the third time, Mike Hawkins in Equalizer stole the show with a win in the Freestyle Competition.
Thankfully, a horrific weather forecast did not materialize on what turned out to be a terrific night of racing. A total of 78 cars were in the pits, just five off a regular Friday Night; not bad for a show that was not set until this past Monday.
After a two week hiatus from racing, the Yates County PowerPlant will get back to life in a big way with the return of the Patriot Sprint Tour on June 29. For more information, visit www.BlackRockSpeedway.com.
Hoselton Auto Mall Crate Sportsman Feature (20 Laps)- CHRIS DAUGHERTY, Ross Vleck, Loren Lincoln, Brady Fultz, AJay Potzrebowski, Dale Welty, Fran Hilton, Donnie Lawson, Nicole Hoag, Erick Williams, Joe Cook Jr., Brandon Butler, Josh Keesey, Rod Mullen, Brent Ayers, Karl Comfort, Matt Vollmer, Chad Dailey, Josh Livingston, Scott Waters.
Lap Leader- Daugherty 1-20.
Heat Winners- Vleck, Mullen, Daugherty.
Lap Leaders- B. Knowles 1-17, Mike Wonderling 18-20.
Heat Winners- B. Knowles, J. Wonderling.
Lap Leaders- Fenton 1-19, Fisher 20.
Heat Winners- Fisher, Buono.
Lap Leaders- Karlnoski 1-15, Yaw 16-20.
Heat Winner- Yaw.
Signs Plus of Kanona/ Watkins Glen NAPA 4-Cylinder Feature (20 Laps)- RICH SHARPSTEEN II, James Kreidler III, Chad Ayers, Scott Bradley, Joe Povoski, Bobby Teed, Russ Wassner, Jayson Smart, Del Cummings, Billy Cagle, Chris Ayers, Chris Mashewske, David Kinner, Stacey Smith, Mike Ziarno, Zack Teed, Brad Rathbun.
Lap Leaders- Sharpsteen 1-20.
Heat Winners- Kreidler, Sharpsteen.
Home Necessities Bandits (10 Laps)- JUSTIN ELDRIDGE, Noah Herington, Brandon Matthews, Brandon Kinner (DNS).
Lap Leaders- Herington 1-2, Eldridge 3-10.
Front Wheel Drive 4 Cylinders (8 Laps)- WESLEY HOTELLING, Josh Sharpsteen, Steve Rogers, Jamie Eldridge, Alyssa Duby.
Lap Leaders- Hotelling 1, Sharpsteen 2-3, Hotelling 4-8.
Heat Winner- Rogers.