It was just like old times in Elma Saturday night, with a few twists. Jay Cole held off Shawna Wilskey in a thrilling Sprint battle, 2000 Modified series champion Scott Miller got back on track with a victory; Jack Parshall Jr. dominated in...
It was just like old times in Elma Saturday night, with a few twists.
Jay Cole held off Shawna Wilskey in a thrilling Sprint battle, 2000 Modified series champion Scott Miller got back on track with a victory; Jack Parshall Jr. dominated in Hobby Stocks, and the duo of Joe Brenneman and Bob Tillman won in Cruisers. Don Billings won as the Washington Sprint 100s visited Grays Harbor Raceway Park.
Cole stalked trophy dash winner Glenn Borden Jr. early in the 25-lap main event. The racing was slowed a few times, including a brief red flag when Steve Vague flipped after losing part of his rear axle. On a restart, Cole was able to slip past Borden, who soon found himself fending off last week's winner Randy Van Aagten, Wilskey, and John Tharp. Van Aagten's hopes for two straight wins ended when he had to take evasive action to avoid a lapped car and subsequently veered into Wilskey, breaking his tie rod.
Wilskey moved past Borden for second and with a handful of laps to go looked for a way past Cole. The two put on a sterling battle in the last few laps. With three to go, Cole caught a break in traffic while lapping Rich Kelly. Wilskey did not immediately get past, allowing Cole to open a slight lead.
Once past the lapped car, Wilskey once again closed on Cole but ran out of time. Despite a gallant effort off the final turn, Wilskey was unable to get past.
Cole, who expects to run a number of races in Elma this year, was happy with grabbing the lead and win. "Glenn was doing awesome," he noted. "I got lucky on that restart. I went to the bottom and stayed there. The top groove was not so good for my car so I knew if I stayed low I would be okay."
As for his end battle with Wilskey, Cole kept focused on his job. "I knew someone was coming, but I couldn't tell who it was," he said.
Wilskey, who had her new car sorted out by the end of the evening, said there's one thing that would have helped her odds of winning. "Not having that 91 car (Kelly) in the middle of the backstretch," she said. "But you win by lapped cars, you lose by lapped cars."
In Modifieds, Miller set fast time and won his trophy dash, allowing him to start the main event from pole. He grabbed the lead at the start and put on a great battle with Leroy Lawhead. As those two battled for the lead, Craig Moore and Dennis Sturgill battled for third place.
The red flag came out near the halfway point as Greg Dineen, battling with Kevin Beerbower, slammed the tires at the pit entrance in turn 3. Dineen was out cold with aid crews first arrived, but was announced to be okay.
Once racing resumed, Lawhead nearly spun while trying to grab the lead, letting Moore and Sturgill get by. With five laps to go the "Flying Fisherman" was able to get by Moore for second. Sturgill closed slightly on Miller, but it was too late. Following the race, it was revealed it was a moot point as Sturgill was disqualified for failing post-race technical inspection.
Miller, who struggled most of last year, noted his car had a slight push but still felt good. In light of last year's problems, he was especially glad.
"Last year we never got the car right," he said. "Last week we made some changes. We lowered the car, raised the torque link, and got a new carburetor. We solved the problems we had last year. We made a lot of changes last year, just not the right ones."
The Hobby Stock race turned into quite the physical affair. Parshall muscled his way into second behind Terry Bower early, then grabbed the lead on lap 5. From then on, everyone was battling for other positions.
And battle they did. Bower, Brandon Daniel, and last week's winner Wayne Lemmon put on a ferocious battle for second on back, at one point making it a three-wide battle.
It appeared Daniel had finally got the spot when he was slowed by a battle of lapped cars right in front of him. Daniel got caught behind Mike Richey, losing second place in the process to Lemmon.
Despite a late caution, Parshall once again pulled out to a comfortable lead. Lemmon held on for second over Daniel, Bower, and Kris Asche.
Parshall suffered a crushed fuel filter clamp in his trophy dash, leaving him unsure how he would be in the main event. "I didn't know what we would be like," he said. "(But) that thing was awesome. We made the car light and solid, and we've built a torquey motor."
For the second week in a row, a Hobby Stock air caught air. In the second heat race, Lemmon and Brian Mosher collided in turn 3. Mosher slid up the track, hit the guardrail, and then did a few rolls before landing outside the turn 4 guardrail, leaning against the fending. Mosher was reported to be okay.
In Cruisers, Brenneman and Tillman won handily in the three-car race. Behind them, the duo of Marvin and Bernie Nicholson exchanged plenty of sheet metal with the Terry Matchett and Silas Brander duo.
The Washington Sprint 100s were also part of Saturday's bill at GHRP. Don Billings and Brad Draff battled much of the race for second. But with just three laps to go in the 15-lap race, the leader suddenly slowed. Billings and Draff suddenly found themselves going for the win. The two were side-by-side starting the last lap, with Billings barely holding on for the win.
Racing continues next Saturday night at the Elma track with a full slate of cruisers, hobby stocks, modifieds and 360 sprints on tap. Gates open at 5:00 PM with racing slated for 7:00 PM.
GHRP results from 5/18
Feature Event - Jay Cole, Shawna Wilskey, Borden, Jr., John Tharp, Ron Reed, Robert McNulty, Steve Walker, Mark Hinkle, Jeff Bell, Rob Johnson, Lance Sponberg, Mike Sellers, Kelly, Randy Van Aagten, Steve Vague, Buddy Messick, Donny Fry.
Feature Event - Scott Miller, Craig Moore, Leroy Lawhead, James Wolford, Kevin Beerbower, Don Jenner, Gino Hinkle, Jeff Foster, Mark Guindon, Tim Minister, Josh Muller, Ron Comfort, Greg Dineen, Dan Daniels, Edward Peters, Danny Fowler, DQ Dennis Sturgill.
Feature Event - Jack Parshall Jr., Wayne Lemmon, Brandon Daniel, Terry Bower, Kris Asche, Jamie Belisle, Joe Richey, Lee St. Paul, Fred Livingston, Brian Lines, Jason Tole, Mike Richey, Amy Joe Springer, Ricardo Mendoza, Sharon Kelley, Robert Jenner, Randy Rozar, Joe Lambert, Chip Haney.
Feature Event - Joe Brenneman/Bob Tillman, Bernie/Marvin Nicholson, Terry Matchett/Silas Brander
Washington Sprint 100s
Feature Event - Don Billings, Brad Draff, Luke Winningham, Mark Nelson, Jeremy Puller, Dave Travis, Dave Haggerty, Glenn Nichols