Grandview Meme DeSantis; a 26 year first!

BECHTELSVILLE, PA APRIL 29, 2000 . . . "I ran my third race ever and led 19 laps here back in 1974 and didn't win. Now, finally, 26 years later I finally win a 'freakin' race here," was the comment of Meme DeSantis in victory lane at Grandview ...

BECHTELSVILLE, PA APRIL 29, 2000 . . . "I ran my third race ever and led 19 laps here back in 1974 and didn't win. Now, finally, 26 years later I finally win a 'freakin' race here," was the comment of Meme DeSantis in victory lane at Grandview Speedway on Saturday night. The Blandon, PA racer had just won his career first NASCAR Weekly Racing Series Modified stock car feature race at the Berks County oval earning $2,200. Also visiting victory lane on Saturday night was Terry Snyder (Green Lane) taking the top spot in the Exide ShorTrack Late Model feature. And Tom Umbenhauer (Richland, PA) won his second PA. Sportsman stock car feature race of the season at the one-third-mile, clay oval. In the 30-lap NASCAR Modified feature Ray Swinehart, a two time champion at Grandview, looked to be on his way to a feature win. Swinehart was in front of the pack until the 18th circuit when Meme DeSantis, at the wheel of the Eisenhart #88T, took command on the backstretch. DeSantis' work did not really begin until he was in front of the 29 car starting field. The veteran racer, who has won features at just about all the local dirt modified ovals, had to hold off strong challenges from Ray Swinehart, Kerry Kratz and Kevin Hartnett. With two laps to go Tom Mayberry, running in the top five, spun bringing out the caution and put the entire field on DeSantis' rear bumper. However as hard as Swinehart and Kratz tried they could not get by the fleet running DeSantis. At the finish the winner, now firmly in front in the chase for the Motor Truck Equipment Co. Kenworth/Cummins PA NASCAR Modified Championship worth $15,000, was less than a car length in front of second place finisher Ray Swinehart (Bechtelsville) and third place Kerry Kratz (Bechtelsville). Grabbing fourth was Kevin Hartnett (Perkasie) followed by Shawn Reimert (Oley). Reimert is now the modified point leader at Grandview Speedway with 513 tallies. John Willman in the Bandit Truck Stop/O'Conner Freightliner entry, started 26th and finished 11th to earn the Timber Wolf Smokeless Tobacco Hard Charger Award. The 20-lap feature Exide ShorTrack Late Models had Casey Ebright grabbing the top spot at the drop of the green. Ebright (Pottstown) set the pace until the 8th lap when he bobbled in the third turn, rubbed the wall, allowing Terry Snyder to get by. Once in front Snyder had a fairly easy time of it riding to victory in his Larry's Mobile Home Skirting entry. Dean Stoudt (East Greenville) grabbed second, moving to the top of the early season late model point standings, in a strong late race effort. John Durling (Reading), who came from far back in the 26 car starting field, finished third. Ed Trimbur (Pottstown) tabbed fourth followed by Rick Todorow (Quakertown). And it was Tom Umbenhauer driving the Mason-Dixon Auto Auction sponsored entry to victory in the 15 lap feature for PA Sportsman. This was the final early season appearance for the sportsman racers. Donn Edgar dogged Umbenhauer for the entire 15 laps but could not get the edge and had to settle for second. Third spot went to Leroy Long. With 116 race cars in the competition area qualifying heats created quite a night of excitement as the bright sun and high winds early in the evening changed track conditions with each event. Wins in the NASCAR Modified qualifiers went to Bob Trapper, Todd Heydt, Jon Kellner, Tom Mayberry and Jeff Strunk. Consolation wins were earned by Glenn Strunk, Smokey Warren and Chip Slocum. The Cash Dash went to Tom Mayberry and was worth $310. Late model qualifiers were won by Dean Stoudt, Casey Ebright and John Durling. The consolation went to Doug Walton. Sportsman heats went to Tom Umbenhauer and Donn Edgar. NASCAR sanctioned stock car racing returns to Grandview Speedway on Saturday, May 6, 7:30 p.m. with NASCAR Modifieds and Exide Late Models being featured in at least 13 events of competition. WAEB-AM Radio will sponsor the night of racing with close to 100 prizes being given out to fans in the stands including a Pocono Getaway. Bobby Gunther Walsh, on- air morning personality at WAEB-AM (Allentown), a regular in modified competition at Grandview, has challenged a number of the station personalities, including Dr. Joe Sobel (nationally known weatherman), to a match race.

30-LAP NASCAR MODIFIED FEATURE (TOP 20)

Meme Desantis, Swinehart, Kratz, Kevin Hartnett, Reimert, Bob Trapper, Jon Kellner, Kenny Gilmore, Dennis Bailey, Smokey Warren, John Willman, Terry Meitzler, Glenn Strunk, Mike Bailey, Steve Folk, Dave Faust, Rick Schaffer, Ed Aikin, Doug Pannepacker, Sam Martz

EXIDE LATE MODEL FEATURE 20-LAPS (TOP 20):

Terry Snyder, Dean Stoudt, John Durling, Ed Trimbur, Rick Todorow, Lou Egrie, Junior Grebe, Jeff Teets, Sam Schlossberg, Chuck Sennott, John Giesler, Casey Ebright, Mike Bedell, Doug Walton, Dallas Breidenbach, Bill Neff, Troy Conrad, Jim Bahz, Josh Huber, Chris Wojnar.

PA SPORTSMAN 15-LAPS) (TOP TEN):

Tom Umbenhauer, Donn Edgar, Leroy Long, Kyle Strickler, Kenny Gilmore, Tom Miller, Shawn Fitzpatrick, Jimmy Reppert, Tom Solderich, John Oliver.

NASCAR MODIFIED POINT STANDINGS AT GRANDVIEW AS OF APRIL 30, 2000....

Shawn Reimert #58s, Oley, PA - 513; Dennis Bailey #81, Kutztown, PA - 498; Meme DeSantis #88T, Blandon, PA - 488; Glenn Strunk #357, Boyertown, PA - 484; Terry Meitzler #21A, Kutztown, PA - 484.

NASCAR EXIDE SHORTRACK LATE MODEL POINT STANDINGS:

Dean Stoudt #77, Green Lane, PA - 589; Rick Todorow #93, Quakertown, PA - 567; Jeff Teets $100, Coplay, PA - 547; John Durling #7, Reading, PA - 533; Lou Egrie #x4, Philadelphia, PA - 515.

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series NASCAR