Eash over Rahmer, Dewease, Hodnett, and Kauffman in Lincoln sprint main; Miller holds off Eckert in super late models; Beard two for three in thundercars. ABBOTTSTOWN, PA, 4/5/03 - Seven years after his first Lincoln track title, Hanover's Cris...
Eash over Rahmer, Dewease, Hodnett, and Kauffman in Lincoln sprint main; Miller holds off Eckert in super late models; Beard two for three in thundercars.
ABBOTTSTOWN, PA, 4/5/03 - Seven years after his first Lincoln track title, Hanover's Cris Eash served notice that he will contend for another with his win in Saturday night's 25-lap super sprint feature. At the same time, he threw the monkey that's been riding on his back in the early-going for the past several seasons.
Eash, piloting the Advance Settlement Agency/Macri Concrete No.17E, drew the fifth starting spot for the feature after winning his heat. He drove around Josh Wells to claim the runner-up spot on a second-lap restart, and pulled the slider to grab the top spot from race-long leader Keith Kauffman as the two entered the first turn of lap seven.
Eash was the man to beat the rest of the way, but it wasn't easy. Six-time defending track champ Fred Rahmer came from 11th starting spot to challenge through the middle stages of the race, and was actually scored the leader on lap 16 when Eash got boxed in by the lapped car of Kyle Ganoe coming off turn four. But Eash powered under Ganoe down the front stretch and regained the lead with a daring slide job in turn one of lap 17.
"I had seen on the board (Rahmer) got into second and he got by me there when I got screwed up with a lapped car," said Eash on his battle with Rahmer in heavy lapped traffic. "Then he went down here and missed the corner and I got back by him."
After that, Eash pulled away from four of the biggest names in eastern sprint car racing on 18th and 20th lap restarts. His final margin of victory over Rahmer was 1.23 seconds, with 17th-starting Lance Dewease, 13th-starting Greg Hodnett, and Kauffman completing the top ten.
"Things went really good tonight," said a smiling Eash in victory lane, "They had the car working awesome...my buddy Paul Philips built this engine and it ran really good."
"Macri Concrete, Advance Settlement Agency, E&G Classics...without all these people we wouldn't be standing here. And I've got to thank the crowd for coming out and supporting us tonight. I've really got to thank my crew Shawn Norris, Wayne Bull, Todd, Donnie...these guys work really hard at this deal and this is the way to pay them back."
"We were debating whether to change stuff or not under that red," said Eash about a late-race red flag for Jeff Rohrbaugh and Brook Weibley, "They said I was pretty good coming off the bottom down here in turn four...so we just kind of left everything alone. It felt a little loose like I was hanging on there at the end but apparently I was pulling away."
"That's what all us guys are shooting for out here," said Esh on his bid for the 2003 Cindy Rowe Paintless Dent Repair 410 Sprint Lincoln Speedway Track Championship.
Eash's 30th career Lincoln win comes on the heels of his opening day win at Williams Grove.
Heats for the 35 "410" sprints were won by Kauffman, Rohrbaugh, Billy Sims, and Rahmer. Twin consolation events were won by Dewease and Niki Young.
Fans knew they were in for a thrilling super late model feature when Jeremy Miller drew the pole and Xtreme Dirt Series two-time defending champ and current points leader Rick Eckert drew pill number "12" for the start.
Both drivers have wrote a good piece of Lincoln late model history. Miller, who topped the former semi-late all-time win list and is still third on the Lincoln thundercar all-time win list, led all 25 laps to score his first ever Lincoln super late model win, but Eckert advanced through the field to take second from Jim Yoder on the 17th lap. Eckert continued to close on Miller over the final eight laps, but came up a car length short at the end.
Yoder, Jim Bernheisel, and Tom Myers (who came from the back after a ninth-lap spin) crossed third through fifth.
Heats for the 32 late models were won by Bernheisel, Eckert, and Miller.
In winning the third heat, Miller, a former Lincoln track champion, set a new 10-lap track record with a time of two minutes 45.58 seconds. That erased a decade-old record that was set by another former track champion, Bobby Beard, back on August 22, 1993 with a 10-lap time of three minutes, .38-hundredth's of a second.
Jeremy Stone won the consolation.
Defending champ Bernie Beard won for the second time in three races in the 20-lap thundercar feature. Beard, who slipped up and handed the win to Nat Tuckey in the final turns two weeks ago, swapped the lead with Bobby Rudisill several times over the second half of the race. Rudisill, who started fourth and led laps six through eight, raced door-to-door with Beard over the final 11 laps. Despite passing Beard several times, he only led lap 15 over the second half of the race. A 20th-lap caution for Dan Zechman and Mike Gladfelter, who spun in turns three and four, resulted in a one-lap shootout which saw Beard block Rudisill's high line in the first and second turns and Rudisill push the back bumper of the "X" car in the final two turns.
Beard's final margin of victory was .34 seconds.
Third through fifth were 11th-starting Steve Clabaugh, Mike Zeigler, Sr. (who led the first five laps), and Nat Tuckey.
Heat for the 25 thundercars on hand were won by Tuckey, David Prunkl, and Rudisill.
Next Saturday night, April 12th, Lincoln Speedway will hold the first of two straight weeks of racing with all three point divisions at the Pigeon Hills oval - the 410 Sprints, 358 Sprints & Thundercars. Next week's April 12th show will also mark the beginning of the new 7 PM start time after several weeks of 6 PM starts.
Gates will now open at 5 PM (two hours prior to green flag action), with warm-ups taking the track at 6:30 PM, before the first heat takes the green at 7 PM.
To get all the latest news, results, schedule changes and rule changes, visit Lincoln Speedway's website at http://www.lincolnspeedway.com to stay up-to-date on all the action or pending weather conditions at Central Pennsylvania's "Premier" Saturday night race track - The Fabulous Lincoln Speedway.