Central Pennsylvania weekend summary 2002-09-23

CRIS EASH WINS IN FINAL WILLIAMS GROVE NATIONAL TUNE-UP Hanover's Cris Eash established himself as a contender for next weekend's 40th Annual Williams Grove National Open with a victory in Friday night's 25-lap super sprint feature at the ...


Hanover's Cris Eash established himself as a contender for next weekend's 40th Annual Williams Grove National Open with a victory in Friday night's 25-lap super sprint feature at the Mechanicsburg half-mile.

Trevor Lewis grabbed the lead at the drop of the green but yielded the top spot to fifth-starting Len Thompson on the third lap. Thompson then paced the field while Eash, who started eighth, was methodically working his way to the front. By the fifth lap Eash had disposed Lewis for the runner-up spot and began to reel in the race-leading Thompson. By lap ninth lap Eash was on Thompson's bumper and then momentarily grabbed the lead as they completed the 10th lap. But Thompson charged back around Eash to retake the lead on the 11th lap.

With six laps remaining Thompson went to the low side entering the first turn as Eash powered hard on the cushion and drove around Thompson exiting the turn with the lead.

Eash then drove away over the final five laps to score his second $3,000 victory of the season at Williams Grove and his third overall in 2002.

Thompson held on for second, Donnie Kreitz Jr. third, Sean Michael came from tenth to finish fourth. Lewis rounded out the top-five by scoring his first top five finish on 2002.

Fred Rahmer came from 15th to claim sixth ahead of Lance Dewease, Todd Hestor, Keith Kauffman and Jason Johnson.

Sprint heats went to Dewease, Greg Hodnett and Kreitz. Bobby Weaver won the consolation race. Pat Cannon won the 20-lap sportsman main.

Fourth-starting Pat Cannon took the lead from Paul Miller on the 11th lap and went on to score the win in the 20-lap super sportsman over Miller. Frankie Herr finished third and claimed the 2002 Super Sportsman Tour championship. Dave Berkheimer and Richie Hartman completed the top five.


Duncannon's Gene Wrightstone of took the lead from race-long leader Charlie Kope on the 32nd lap and went on to record his first-ever win in the Annual Paul Orendo Memorial Limited Late Model 50 at Silver Spring Speedway Saturday night.

For Wrightstone, who was also the winner of the 40-lap street stock championship last season, it was his second limited late model win of the season.

Bud Witmer, Carl Graves, Scott McCann and John Ebersole completed the top five.

Ken Carberry took the lead from Charlie Sorokach on the 18th lap and went on to notch his second win of 2002 in the 25 lap super sportsman feature over Jerry Wolfe and Jason Fry.

LINCOLN MANUFACTURERS APPRECIATION RACE POSTPONED DUE TO RAIN; Over $60,000 in manufacturer prizes await October 11th super sprint field

Expectations were high as 40 of the best super sprinters in Central Pennsylvania converged on Lincoln Speedway Saturday night for the 14th running of Manufacturers Appreciation Night for the super sprints. More than $60,000 in merchandise lined up by Hank and Denise Gentzler of Hank's Performance Products awaited the starting feature field. But Mother Nature had other plans.

Intermittent rain showers began to fall during the second of four sprint heats, forcing a halt to the evening's racing action. Then after and hour-and-a-half of waiting and running in the track, the rains returned one last time, forcing Lincoln Speedway officials to postpone the evening's racing action around 10:30 PM.

The Manufacturers Appreciation race has now been rescheduled for Friday, October 11th, which is the scheduled rain date for the Kenny Weld Memorial. As long as the October 5th Kenny Weld Memorial runs as planned, the Manufacturers Appreciation Race will be on Friday, October 11th.

If the Kenny Weld Memorial needs to use its scheduled rain date on October 11th, the Manufacturers Appreciation race would then be run on one week later, Friday, October 18th.

The rescheduled show will be rerun in its entirety, starting with time trials.

Rain checks from the September 21st race will be honored at face value at either of the final two races.

Before the rains came, Hellam's Bobby Weaver had won the first heat and earlier Memphis, Tennessee's Greg Hodnett set fast time over the 40-car field with a one-lap time of 13.546 seconds.

Next Saturday night, September 28th, Lincoln Speedway will be idle as the super sprinters will be running in the Williams Grove National Open.

Then the following Saturday night, October 5th, Lincoln Speedway will run the Annual Kenny Weld Memorial which was originally the final race of 2002 at the Pigeon Hill's oval (Now the Manufacturers Appreciation race will be the final race). Joining them will be the thundercars. Time trials for the super sprint will start the evening's program at 7 PM, with gates opening at 5 PM.


Heavy rains Saturday night forced Hagerstown Speedway officials to postpone the second day of the Hub-City National 150. The longest late model race of the season has been rescheduled for Saturday, October 12th. Gates will open at 4 P.M. with racing at 6 P.M. Rain date is set for Sunday, October 13th at 2 P.M.

B-Mains for the ITSI late models will kick off the program to fill the remaining eight spots in the 30-car field. Twenty-two drivers qualified Friday night as Doug Burkholder of Chambersburg set fast one-lap time of 19.057 seconds. Following the B-main will be the 25-lap late model sportsman feature and the 20-lap Pure Stock feature with the Hub-City Nation 150 rounding out the program. The 150-lap event will pay $10,000 to the winner.

"We had a difficult time finding a date to re-schedule the 150" said Promoter Frank Plessinger. "The fall schedule is full of special events and you try your best to find an open date that will not interfere with anyone else. We feel that the 12th with a 13th rain date will be the best for everyone."

Sitting next to Burkholder on the front row will be Seven time track champion Nathan Durboraw of Hagerstown. The rest of the drivers who have qualified for the Hub-City National include the five heat winners from Friday's qualifying events; Booper Bare, Gary Stuhler, Rick Eckert, Todd Andrews and Steve Francis.

Other drivers who have qualified include Frankie Plessinger, Marvin Winters, Andy Anderson, Tom Myers, DJ Myers; Jeff Rine, Dick Barton, Mike Atherton, Charlie Schaffer, Paul Crowl, Tim Wilson, Scott Haus, Greg Fetters, Bo Feathers and Travis Dillman. This Thursday, September 26th, Hagerstown Speedway will return to action with the Pennzoil World of Outlaws. Race time is 7:30 P.M. with gates opening at 5 P.M. Joining the Outlaws will be the ITSI late models.


Darren Eash picked up his third win of the season in the 20 lap 358 sprint feature Friday night at Trail-Way Speedway over Kyle Purks and Dale Hammaker.

Newly crowned 250cc Micro-Sprint champion Brad McClelland won his eleventh race Friday while Bryan Wagaman passed his father Craig Wagaman on the final lap to score his seventh thundercar win of the season Friday as well.

Trail-Way's Saturday night racing program of Figure 8s, 600cc Micro-Sprints, 4-Cylinder Pure Stocks, Scramble Cars & Vintage Cars was cancelled due to rain.


Curt Michael of Ocean View, DE scored his third URC win of 2002 Saturday night at Delaware International Speedway in Delmar, DE.

For URC, only a feature event was on the program since all qualifying was completed on Saturday night, August 31, just prior to a rain storm that eventually cancelled the program for that night.

It was a very special win for Michael, since this was the speedway where he received a serious back injury earlier in the season. A former URC Champion in 1998, Curt Michael now owns fifteen career URC victories.


Shane Stewart captured the sixth annual All Star Circuit of Champions Chuck Marsh Memorial 40 lap feature Saturday night at Pennsylvania's Mercer Raceway, The Bixby, OK driver earned $5,000 for his second series win over Dale Blaney and a brakeless Jeff Shepard.


Jac Haudenschild bested Donny Schatz in a race-long, lead-exchanging battle to record the weekend sweep of the 1/3-Mile Short Track Nationals Saturday night at Eagle Raceway in Eagle, NE. The non-stop 40-lap win was Haudenschild's second A-Feature win of the season.

"Donny Schatz kind of jumped out there on the start, and we went back and forth a couple of times...he ran a great race," said the victorious Haudenschild in victory lane. "I'm a little tired right now...40 laps here in traffic with no cautions gets to you a little bit."

Haudenschild pulled off a spectacular third-to-first move past Donny Schatz and Mark Kinser, then exchanged the lead with Schatz two more times on his way to winning the 1/3-Mile Short Track Nationals Preliminary Feature on Friday. Haudenschild, the 1989 Eagle Nationals champion, beat Schatz under the checkered flag by 1.5 seconds for his first Preliminary Feature victory of the year.

-bill meyer-

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About this article
Series Sprint , World of Outlaws
Drivers Mark Kinser , Rick Eckert , Donny Schatz , Shane Stewart , Paul Miller , Steve Francis , Jac Haudenschild , Jason Johnson
Teams Williams