Rain strategy brings Cywinski ASA win. Jennerstown, Pa. (August 16, 2003) -- Wisconsin veteran Kevin Cywinski took a big leap toward winning a second American Speed Association title by electing not to pit and then watching rain shorten the ...
Rain strategy brings Cywinski ASA win.
Jennerstown, Pa. (August 16, 2003) -- Wisconsin veteran Kevin Cywinski took a big leap toward winning a second American Speed Association title by electing not to pit and then watching rain shorten the Pennsylvania 250.
Cywinski in the SK Hand Tools Chevrolet was running second to Mike Garvey in the Jani-King Chevrolet when the sixth caution flag wave on lap 107 when rookie Kyle Jones spun in Turn 4 and Troy Wangerin looped his Chevrolet in Turn 3.
With threatening weather surrounding the Jennerstown Speedway, Garvey and Butch Miller in the Timber Wolf Chevrolet, running third at the time, elected to stop for tires.
That handed the lead to Cywinski followed by Chad Wood in the Track Side Charities Chevrolet, Ed Brown in the Grubb's Auto Repair Chevrolet and Greg Stewart in the Body Balance Chevrolet up front.
Miller came out of the pits in sixth with Garvey rejoining the field in eighth position. With Cywinski opening up a sizeable lead, Wood, Brown, Stewart, Peter Cozzolino and Garvey raced side by side for the second position.
On lap 124 there was a multiple car accident between Turns 3 and 4 that collected Cozzolino, Zach Niessner, Glen Allen Jr. and Kris Stump.
Just as the race was to be restarted on lap 133 the rain started to fall and the race was declared official after 137 circuits.
For Cywinski it was the third win of 2003 and the 13th of his career. He extended his points lead by 50 markers over Miller to 129 with five races remaining.
"I was really surprised," said Cywinski of Garvey's decision to pit. "I thought with the weather everyone would stay out. When we almost went back green, I was hoping we had made the right call."
Cywinski said fuel wasn't a concern and the team figured it had enough to go at least 200 laps.
"I was really having a problem coming off of Turn 4 because of the glare from the lights," he said after collecting $16,965 of the more than $197,000 purse.
Following Cywinski to the checkers was Wood, Stewart, Brown and Garvey. It was career best runs for Wood and Brown. Rounding out the top ten were Bryan Reffner, Robbie Pyle, Reed Sorenson, Chris Wimmer and Todd Kluever.
"I knew the rain was coming," said Wood, "but I didn't know when. We had a good race car, but had a horrible qualifying run.
"The crew called on the caution before the last one (lap 107) and wanted to pit," he said. "I said no, we have got to stay out there."
Stewart recording his first podium finish since 2001, has now finished in the top ten in the last three races.
He recovered from a spin in Turn 1 on lap 50 when he was tapped by Cozzolino and pitted.
"The car was good, but the driver messed up during qualifying," said Stewart. "We were moving up and our pit strategy worked. This wasn't handed to us, we still had to race hard against Ed (Brown) for third. We earned it."
Miller grabbed the lead from pole sitter Cywinski at the start and led the first five laps before the Wisconsin veteran and Garvey went inside entering Turn 3 to take over the first two positions.
Garvey then was able to get around Cywinski with an outside move on the front straight to take the lead on lap 25 and led until he pitted on lap 108.
Reed Sorenson in the ACDelco Chevrolet extended his lead to 206 points over Travis Kittleson in the Bob Steele Chevrolet for the rookie title. Sorenson finished eighth and Kittleson came in 14th.
The Pennsylvania 250 will be broadcast on The Speed Channel at 5 p.m. (EDT) on Sunday.