ICEMAN Race # 1

ICE CHIPS by DEBI DOMBY, SOUTHGATE, MICHIGAN The AC Delco/Murray's Iceman Series finally got their 1st race of the season in Saturday night at Shady Bowl Speedway after 3 consecutive rain outs at the series flagship track, Toledo ...

ICE CHIPS by DEBI DOMBY, SOUTHGATE, MICHIGAN

The AC Delco/Murray's Iceman Series finally got their 1st race of the season in Saturday night at Shady Bowl Speedway after 3 consecutive rain outs at the series flagship track, Toledo Speedway.

Dave Kuhlman inherited the lead with 2 laps to go when leader Harold Fair Jr's clutch broke on the last restart on lap 98 & went on to take home his 9th career victory on the series.

Kuhlman had one his worst qualifying runs of his Iceman career, qualifying 13th in the 20 car field. The Howell, Michigan driver had moved up to 8th when the first caution (& subsequent red flag) that came out on lap 14. The driver of the Right Tools/Zieller's Farm Market/Fastlane Monte Carlo moved into 3rd on lap 77 & passed Phillips to the high side for 2nd place 11 laps later. With 5 laps to go, Kuhlman caught up to leader Harold Fair Jr but was unable to get past him. The caution that flew with 2 laps to go was Fair Jr's undoing as his clutch broke on the restart, allowing Kuhlman to pass him easily for the win.

Harold Fair Jr, who is also running in the ASA series this year, started 9th & moved up to 2nd by lap 74. The Redford, Michigan driver assumed the lead when Scott Baker suddenly slowed & retired on lap 76. Fair Jr was well on his way to his 1st career Iceman series victory, running over a straightaway ahead of 2nd place Kuhlman when bad luck struck. When Fair Jr's clutch in his Lefthander Chassis Monte Carlo let go &, he rapidly dropped back to finish 7th.

There were 4 cautions, one that turned into a red flag, during the 100 green flag feature. On lap 14, polesitter Don St. Denis & rookies Claude Plante Jr, Jim Miller went three wide out of turn 4. Third place St. Denis was on the outside, hit the wall hard & spun along with 4th place Plante Jr & the lapped car of Miller, blocking the entrance into turn 1. The cars of Gary Camelet, Freddie Campbell & Dennis Anscombe, Greg Taylor & Mike Hunter were involved in a secondary wreck to the initial accident. St. Denis's Dart Machining Monte Carlo was taken back to the pits via a flat bed with severe damage to all 4 corners of his car. Plante Jr. & Camelet also forced to retire their mounts.

Len Couvillon finished 5th. This is his career best finish on the series. The Canadian driver has the distinction of having the only Grand Prix on the series. The #12 crew worked diligently to repair various leaks in the Southern Sign Couvillon Grand Prix during the hot lap session.

Kenny Phillips ran most of the race in the top 3, but spun his #5 with 2 laps remaining when he hit some rear end grease. The Premier Transport/Snyder Collision/Northside Automotive Monte Carlo finished in 6th position. On off weekends Phillips is racing in the American Race Truck series & last weekend scored a win at Michigan Ideal Speedway.

Defending series champion, Glenn Gault, drove a conservative race & finished 2nd to Kuhlman. Gault also had a bad qualifying run, miring him back in 11th for the start. The Hubbard, Ohio driver moved into the top 5 on lap 60 & into 3rd on lap 98. The driver of the American Title & Trust/Gault Heating/Tanbone's Snow King Monte Carlo also had a good brake when Phillips spun on lap 98, bringing out a yellow, which allowed him to catch the leaders.

Jerry Cook, aboard his Marco Pizza/DeVliss/UB Machining Thunderbird, had his 1st top 3 finish in 3 seasons taking home 3rd tonight. His last top 5 finish was in race 3 last year when he finished 4th.

Fred Campbell made his return to the series. Campbell qualified 2nd and received some sheet metal damage in the lap 14 melee. Late in the race the Battle Creek, Michigan driver faded back in the field when his Port City Monte Carlo dropped a cylinder. He finished 4th.

Scott Baker returned this year as driver for Steve Sieldlarczyk. The team has reverted back to its old number, #11. This was the number they used several years ago when Kenny Phillips was driving for them. Baker dominated the race leading the 1st 76 laps. The Akron, Ohio driver appeared to have the win in his pocket only to develop a rear end leak, which retired his Sypolt Chevrolet/Miles Farmer Market/Port City Monte Carlo on lap 76. He finished 15th.

ROOKIES CORNER:

George Rangel was the top rookie into tonight's race, finishing 13th, a career best. In fact he was the only rookie to finish the race, despite a rear end leak that left him 6 laps down at the finish. The Casco Township, Michigan driver finished repairing his car after a traffic accident on the way home from a race last weekend. The rear of his Champion Temperance Service/Ultimate Design Monte Carlo was severely bent in the accident & the repairs were just finished this morning. ***** Claude Plante Jr was the unexpected fast time qualifier for tonight's race. He turned a lap of 13.27, only .06 off the track record set by Dave Kuhlman in 1996. The last time a rookie recorded the top qualifying time was Chas Howe in race #2 of 1993. The Sterling Heights, Michigan driver was involved in the lap 14 melee & finished 19th. ***** Scott Dilloway finished 16th after dropping out with handling problems. ***** Jim Miller finished 17th after being involved in the first caution. Although he attempted to return to the race after the wreck he only completed one more lap.

FINISH:

SHADY BOWL SPEEDWAY: MAY 16, 1998

DAVE KUHLMAN, GLENN GAULT, JERRY COOK, FREDDIE CAMPBELL, LEN COUVILLON, KENNY PHILLIPS, HAROLD FAIR JR, DENNIS ANSCOMBE, RONNIE RIDENOUR, GREG TAYLOR, SEAN SHOLTIS, STEVE SEEGOTT, GEORGE RANGEL, MIKE HUNTER, SCOTT BAKER, SCOTT DILLOWAY, JIM MILLER, DON ST. DENIS, CLAUDE PLANTE JR, GARY CAMELET

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