Williams Grove report 96-05-03

Mechanicsburg, PA Greetings fellow Sprint Car fans. Friday evening found the Express Line All Stars invading Williams Grove. This was a special evening for my son and I since my parents had come down from upstate New York and...

Mechanicsburg, PA Greetings fellow Sprint Car fans. Friday evening found the Express Line All Stars invading Williams Grove. This was a special evening for my son and I since my parents had come down from upstate New York and accompanied us to the track. Also meeting us at the track was Dave Reininger who also posts on MNI. There were 45 of the 410 Sprint cars signed into the pits. Time trials were held with the fastest time trialers being handicapped into their heat races. Four cars from each heat race qualify through the heats which gave them back their time back for the feature. There were five heat races with one B main and then the 30 lap A Main. Remember that highlights from the open wheel ranks, including Williams Grove, are shown on Wednesday evening on ESPN 2 on the nightly show RPM 2 night.

DRIVER CHANGES Okay here we go again. Yes, Fred Rahmer still is in the Hamilton #77. Yes, Keith Kauffman is still in the #12. No, Dave Calaman was not in the #59. However, Bill Brian Jr. was in the #59 which was quite a surprise. And for those folks that have followed the Weikert Livestock #29 over the years Tim Dietz was not driving this past weekend. The chauffeur for the #29 this weekend was Dave Calaman.

TIME TRIALS - Top Ten                        Lap 1        Lap 2        Fast Lap
1.        # 1Z        Billy Pauch                17.783        17.828        17.783
2.        #1J        Steve Siegel                18.189        17.892        17.892
3.        #92x        Kevin Gobrecht                18.063        17.903        17.903
4.        #3        Daniel Coggeshell        18.050        18.770        18.050
5.         #3B        Van Gurley Jr.                18.299        18.093        18.093
6.        #17e        Cris Eash                18.181        18.119        18.119
7.        #11        Greg Hodnett                18.154        18.178        18.154
8.        #55        Tim Shaffer                18.313        18.174        18.174
9.        #77        Fred Rahmer                18.201        18.227        18.201
10.        #69K        Don Kreitz Jr.                18.235        18.282        18.235                        

HEAT ONE The line up for heat one was as follows: Row 1: #00 Danny Smith, #5K Mark Richard Row 2: #5 Craig Eshenaur, #12 Keith Kauffman Row 3: #17e Cris Eash, #1Z Billy Pauch Row 4: #2D Craig Dollansky, #121 Judi Bates Row 5: #117 Mike Erdley The green waved and the #5K of Richard grabbed the lead heading into turn one. The #12 of Kauffman passed the #17e on the back stretch for second while the #1Z of Pauch was running fourth. By lap three the #17e of Eash passed the #1Z of Pauch to take third. The #12 of Kauffman pressured the #5K of Richard but was not able to complete the pass. HEAT ONE QUALIFIERS #5K, #12, #17e, #1Z. The heat timed in 3 minutes and 6.48 seconds.

HEAT TWO The line up for heat two was as follows: Row 1: #92 Kenny Jacobs, #1W Jeff Shepard Row 2: #U2 Kevin Huntley, #88 Todd Shaffer Row 3: #11 Greg Hodnett, #1J Steve Siegel Row 4: #13 Scott Jones, #45 Jeff Rohrbaugh Row 5: #10 Len Thompson The green flag waved over the field and the #92 of Jacobs took the lead heading into turn one while the #1J of Siegel passed the #88 of Shaffer to take third. On lap two the #88 was pressuring the #1J however, on the back stretch the #1J of Siegel passed the #1W of Shepard to take second place. By lap six the #88 of Shaffer was pressuring the #1W of Shepard for the third position but was unable to get past. HEAT TWO QUALIFIERS #92, #1J, #1W, #88. The heat timed in 3 minutes and 8.50 seconds.

HEAT THREE The line up for heat three was as follows: Row 1: #77t Jess Thomas, #U5 Trevor Utt Row 2: #59 Bill Brian Jr., #23s Frankie Kerr Row 3: #55 Tim Shaffer, #92x Kevin Gobrecht Row 4: #25 Todd Gracey, #68 Mike Lutz Row 5: #22 Brian Kaltreider The green waved but was quickly followed by a yellow for a false start. On the restart the #U5 of Utt grabbed the lead with the #23s in second. On lap two the #59 of Brian was pressuring the #77t of Thomas for third but the #55 of Shaffer passed both cars in turn two to take third. The #59 slows and goes into the pits with while the top four were: #U5, #23s, #55 and the #77t. Pressuring the #77t for the final qualifying spot was the #92x of Gobrecht. Gobrecht tried going high and he tried going low but could not pass the #77t. As the white flag dropped the #92x of Gobrecht closed for one final attempt. As the leader took the checked flag Gobrecht tried getting by the #77t of Thomas in turn four. It appeared there was contact made and the #92x of Gobrecht flipped and went out over the guard rail and knocked down the 10 foot tall metal retaining wall. Luckily Gobrecht climbed from the car unharmed. The wrecker took the #92 car from the accident scene through the section of retaining wall knocked down. The car was brought to the pits and immediately the crew started working on it. HEAT THREE QUALIFIERS #U5, #23s, #55, #77t. The heat timed in 3 minutes and 5.88 seconds.

HEAT FOUR The line up for heat four was as follows: Row 1: #13 Jeremy Minton, #55x Mike Wagner Row 2: #94 Dale Blaney, #1F Dean Jacobs Row 3: #77 Fred Rahmer, #3 Daniel Coggeshell Row 4: #39 Phil Walter, #49 Bob Howard Row 5: #10N Jeff Thompson The #55x took the lead as the green waved. The #1F of Jacobs and the #13 of Minton were running extremely tight going down the backstretch on lap one. By lap two the #1F of Jacobs had pulled away allowing for a three car race for the third position between the #13 of Minton, #77 of Rahmer and the #94 of Blaney. On lap four the #94 of Blaney managed to get by the #13 of Minton in turn four to take the third position. On lap five the #77 of Rahmer was all over the #13 of Minton and Rahmer managed to get by in turn four to take the final qualifying spot. HEAT FOUR QUALIFIERS #55x, #1F, #94, #77. The heat timed in 3 minutes and 10.55 seconds.

HEAT FIVE The line up for heat five was as follows: Row 1: #3x Bob Bennett, #29 Dave Calaman Row 2: #461 Lance Dewease, #2W Jesse Wentz Row 3: #69K Don Kreitz Jr., ##3B Van Gurley Jr. Row 4: #2L Ed Lynch Jr., #18 Brian Carlson Row 5: #11A Tim Kuhn The green waved and the field took it cleanly. The #29 of Calaman took the point with the #461 of Dewease, #3x of Bennett and the #2W of Wentz in the top four positions. The top four broke off into pairs and the #461 of Dewease was pressuring the #29 of Callaman for the lead while further back the #69K of Kreitz was pressuring the #2W for fourth. On lap three the #3x of Bennett hit the wall in turn three brining out the red flag. The top four were now: #29, #461, #2W and the #69K. As the green waved the #69K of Kreitz passed the 32W of Wentz on the restart. Meanwhile the action up front was intense. The #461 was pressuring the #29 for the lead. On lap six they were wing to wing and on lap seven the #29 was in the lead, slightly. On lap eight the #461 finally managed to get by between turn one and two for the lead. HEAT FIVE QUALIFIERS #461, #29, #69K, #2W

All Star Dash Only the top six by time trials were eligible for the 5 lap straight up start race. This event is only for All Star Members only so the #1Z of Pauch was not eligible. 1.) #1J Siegel, 2.) #3 Coggeshell 3.) #3B Gurley Jr. 4.) #11 Hodnett 5.) #55 Shaffer 6.) #77 Rahmer The #1J of Siegel pulled away while the #77 of Rahmer passed two cars. The finishing order was: #1J, #3, #11, #77, #3D, #55

As soon as the Dash was over the #92x of Gobrecht was pushed out to start his car which was running rough as the B Main order was being given. Gobrecht returned to his pits and the crew went to work. Now remember that this was the same car he had wrecked with in his heat. The team deserves a great deal of credit for getting the car ready for the B Main.

B MAIN - Twelve Laps - Five To Qualify Row 1: #92x Kevin Gobrecht, #3 Daniel Coggeshell Row 2: #3B Van Gurley Jr., #11 Greg Hodnett Row 3: #5 Craig Eshenaur, #U2 Kevin Huntley Row 4: #59 Bill Brian Jr., #00 Danny Smith Row 5: #13 Jeremy Minton, #3x Bob Bennett Row 6: #2D Craig Dollansky, #13x Scott Jones Row 7: #25 Todd Gracey, #39 Phil Walter Row 8: #2L Ed Lynch Jr., #121 Judi Bates Row 9: #45 Jeff Rohrbaugh, #68 Mike Lutz Row 10: #49 Bob Howard, # 18 Brian Carlson Row 11: #117 Mike Erdley, #10 Len Thomas Row 12: #22 Brian Kaltreider, #10N Jeff Thomas Row 13: #11A Tim Kuhn Trevor Utt scratched from the consi due to motor problems. If the #92x of Gobrecht and the #3 of Coggeshell qualify they get their time back and would start the feature on the front row since Billy Pauch had pulled the four pill to have the top four qualifiers inverted for the feature. As the green waved the #3x of Bob Bennett pulled into the pits. At the completion of lap one the yellow waved for a brake caliber on the back stretch. The running order was: #3 of Coggeshell, #11 of Hodnett, #92x of Gobrecht, #5 of Eshenaur, #59 of Brian and the #3B of Gurley. The field took the green, however the yellow quickly waved for the #10 of Thompson who hit the guard rail in turn four. On the restart the #11 of Hodnett got by the #3 of Coggeshell. The #92 of Gobrecht started to pressure the #3 and passed him on lap two in turn four. On lap three the red flag waved for the #13 who had flipped. On the restart the #3 of Coggeshell got lose and almost tagged the outside guard rail while the #92x of Gobrecht almost lost it between turn one and two due to a flat rear tire bringing out the yellow. Unfortunately for him the All Star rules do not have a two lap rule to allow for a flat tire change in the B Main, only in the A Main. What an effort the Gobrecht crew put into their effort, too bad it came up just a little short! When the green waved again the only position really being contested was the fifth spot between the #3B of Gurley and the #2D Craig Dollansky. On lap five the #2D of Dollansky got by in turn two. B MAIN QUALIFIERS #11, #5, #59, #3, #2D. First alternate #3B.

A MAIN - 30 Laps The #29 of Calaman scratched from the event. Row 1: #3B Van Gurley Jr., #3 Daniel Coggeshell Row 2: #1J Steve Siegel, #1Z Billy Pauch Row 3: #17e Cris Eash, #11 Greg Hodnett Row 4: #55 Tim Shaffer, #77 Fred Rahmer Row 5: #69K Don Kreitz Jr., #12 Keith Kauffman Row 6: #88 Todd Shaffer, #23s Frankie Kerr Row 7: #1F Dean Jacobs, #2W Jesse Wentz Row 8: #5 Craig Eshenaur, #59 Bill Brian Row 9: #94 Dale Blaney, #461 Lance Dewease Row 10: #5K Mark Richard, # 1W Jeff Shepard Row 11: #55x Mike Wagner, #92 Kenny Jacobs Row 12: #77t Jess Thomas, #2D Craig Dollansky The #1J of Siegel took the point as the cars roared off into turn one. On the first lap Billy Pauch got jammed twice and slid back two positions. There was a great deal of jockeying for position and many positions changed from lap to lap. On lap six the #23s of Kerr lost a motor and he pulled into the pits. Then on lap eight the #94 of Blaney stopped on the back stretch bring out the yellow. Dale Blaney just can not catch a break at the Grove. The amazing thing during this was the #11 of Hodnett who was running third. His top wing had collapsed severely limiting his vision to a couple of inches at the best. The cars aligned for the green with the #1J leading the way being followed by #3B, #11, #77, #17e, #1Z, #3. On lap nine the #77 of Rahmer gets by the #11 of Hodnett on the back stretch for third. On lap eleven the #1Z of Pauch got past the #11 on the back stretch. The running order at this point was: #1J, #77, #1Z, #11, #17e, #88, #3D, #3 and the #12. The first three got strung out a little at this point of the race. On lap seventeen the #17e of Eash got by the #11 of Hodnett who's wing was even lower than before. On lap twenty-one the #77 of Rahmer was closing on the #1J of Siegel with the #1Z of Pauch running third. On lap twenty-three the #1J of Siegel hits the outside wall while going down the backstretch allowing the #77 to get by. Then in turn four the #77 gets above the cushion and almost hits the outside guard rail allowing the #1J of Siegel to get back by #77 of Rahmer. An intense battle between the #1J of Siegel and the #1Z of Pauch waged on the track. On lap twenty-seven the yellow waved for the #88 of Todd Shaffer who had stopped on the back stretch. As the green waved for the few remaining laps the #1Z of Pauch tried every trick to get by the #1J of Siegel. TOP TEN FINISHERS - A MAIN #1J, #1Z, #77, #17e, #461, #12, #11, #1F, #55, #59

A MAIN NOTES The top wing of the #11 of Hodnett was down so far that there probably was not more than four inches of clearance between it and the engine cowl. However, taking into consideration the fact that the driver was sitting higher than this and had to look down through that space it was amazing that he could drive the car.

Fred Rahmer was still wearing his Apple Chevrolet drivers suit even though they had new #77 tee shirts on sale already.

The owner of the #1J driven by Steve Siege, Jimmy Walker, said that he paced the top of the trailer at least three times in the finishing laps.

TRIVIA QUESTION Correction time. Last week my answer to the trivia question contained a mistake. The right numbers but the wrong order. In what year did the sprint cars become a regular weekly attraction at Williams Grove? Sprint cars become a regular weekly attraction at Williams Grove in 1967, not 1976.

Last Weeks Trivia Answer: The last time that Keith Kauffman visited victory lane at Williams Grove was in July of 1993 driving the Weikert Livestock #29. His last win prior to the Grove win of two weeks ago was September 9, 1995 while driving the Gil Sonner #47 at Santa Maria Speedway, California during a World of Outlaw show.

This weeks trivia question is supplied by Dave Reininger: Who drove the first lap that was ever driven on Williams Grove Speedway?

Next Friday night the 410 Sprints and Williams Grove 358 Sprints are on the schedule. As always I welcome any news, comments, suggestions or questions. You can reach me at: rgould@oehs.upenn.edu

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About this article
Series Sprint
Drivers Tim Shaffer , Craig Dollansky , Kenny Jacobs , Brian Carlson , Dean Jacobs , Billy Pauch , Brian Kaltreider , Steve J
Teams Williams