DeSantis and Trimbur share victory lane at Grandview Speedway. BECHTELSVILLE, PA JULY 13, 2002 . . . It took Meme DeSantis 26 years to win his first modified feature race at Grandview Speedway and now he is a regular visitor to victory lane. The...
DeSantis and Trimbur share victory lane at Grandview Speedway.
BECHTELSVILLE, PA JULY 13, 2002 . . . It took Meme DeSantis 26 years to win his first modified feature race at Grandview Speedway and now he is a regular visitor to victory lane. The Temple, PA racer won his fourth NASCAR Modified feature of the season when he took the top honors in the 30-lap Hatfield Quality Meats Modified feature race on Saturday night at the wheel of the Norm's Save Station #357 Modified. The feature finish was a down-to-the-wire battle that saw the lead being swapped back and forth between former champion Ray Swinehart, defending champion Craig VonDohren and DeSantis with current point leader Jeff Strunk sticking his nose in from time to time in the final laps. VonDohren (Oley) finished a very close second, the feature finish looking like the action of a pinball with positions changing from turn to turn in the closing two laps.
Third place was earned by Jeff Strunk (Bethel) allowing him to hold on to the point lead in the chase for the lucrative track championship. Ray Swinehart (Bechtelsville) was forced to settle for fourth as lapped traffic slowed the action for some. Doug Manmiller (Sinking Spring), a multi feature winner this season, finished fifth.
In victory lane DeSantis, hardly able to contain his excitement, said,
"This was the most fun I have had in months." It was wheel to wheel racing with no one touching the other that had fans standing and cheering in the final laps.
And in the 20-lap feature for NASCAR Late Models it was Ed Trimbur earning his first feature win of the season. Bill Henning had lead from the start to the fifteenth lap when an accident, not of his making, forced him to spin and have to go to the rear of the field. Trimbur, who calls Bechtelsville home these days, inherited the lead and drove his French Creek Outfitters sponsored entry to victory. Second spot went to Doug Walton (Phoenixville) followed by Terry Snyder (Green Lane), Sam Schlosberg (Green Lane) and Chuck Schutz (Pottstown).
Ron Seltman grabbed the early lead with Shawn Reimert giving chase. With five laps in the record book Reimert put his Kochel Equipment sponsored mount in front of the pack. Ray Swinehart was next to lead the field as he grabbed the front spot coming off turn two on the 13th circuit of the one-third-mile clay banked oval.
Swinehart was able to keep control of the feature until the 24th lap when Meme DeSantis, coming from 15th starting spot, got the lead. However that is when the "dancing" started and there were moves by the leaders than would be seen in a championship chess match. DeSantis set the pace through the 26th lap with VonDohren able to get the top spot on the 27th and 28th laps. DeSantis was back in front for the final two laps but though they did not lead official laps in the final circuits VonDohren, Swinehart and Jeff Strunk were all very, very close.
One fan, exiting the speedway, said, " I have been watching stock car races for more than 20 years. That one was the best I have ever seen." Only one caution flag fell during the feature and that was before 10 laps had been completed.
Qualifying heat races were won by Doug Manmiller, Shawn Reimert, Jamie Mills, Meme DeSantis and Craig VonDohren. Consolation races for the more than 50 NASCAR Modifieds on hand were won by Barry Readinger, Randy Stoudt and Steve Swinehart. The Automotive Machining Services Cash Dash, worth $541, went to VonDohren in the Mrs T's Pierogies #114.
In Late Model qualifying events wins were earned by Doug Walton, Bill Henning and Chuck Schutz while Rick Todorow got the victory in the consolation race.
Coming up on Saturday night, July 20, 7:30 p.m., the NASCAR Weekly Racing Series presented by Dodge and Late Model stock car racing will be presented. Fans will get to see at least 12 events of stock car racing sponsored by the new Harry's U-Pull-It of Pennsburg, PA and Gatorade. And on Saturday, July 27th it will be 3M Night featuring the NASCAR Modifieds and Late Models starting at 7:30 p.m.
The biggest event of the season, so far, comes up on Saturday, August 3rd when the Stauffer Construction Co. presents the Forrest Rogers Memorial 50-lapper for NASCAR Modifieds plus a full show of Late Model stock car racing. Racing starts at 7:30 p.m.
Grandview Speedway is located on Passmore Road, just off Route 100, in Bechtelsville, PA, 10 miles north of Pottstown. For information on race events telephone 610.754.7688 or visit their website at www.grandviewspeedway.com.