Lance Dewease led all fifty laps on his way to his second career victory in Hagerstown Speedway's Octoberfest 350. Dewease chalked up his twenty-sixth win of the 1997 season on Sunday afternoon. Last Sunday's Octoberfest activities were ...
Lance Dewease led all fifty laps on his way to his second career victory in Hagerstown Speedway's Octoberfest 350. Dewease chalked up his twenty-sixth win of the 1997 season on Sunday afternoon.
Last Sunday's Octoberfest activities were postponed due to rain after the Sportsman and Small Block Modified divisions ran their 50 lap features. Still on the card were 100 lappers for Big Block Modifieds and Late Models and a 50 lapper for the Sprints.
Brett Hearn led flag to flag in the Modified race while Bart Hartman led 98 out of 100 laps in winning the Late Model race. Rodney Franklin passed Hartman on lap 97 and held on to the lead for two laps before Hartman got back around to take the white and checkered flags first.
Sprint cars were the last race of the day. The track was black from abused tires before the sprint feature started. During the first two features, Rahmer and Dewease were seen checking tires on the front runners during red flag periods.
Dewease started on the pole with Kevin Gobrecht along side on the front row. On the initial start, several cars got together on the front stretch sending Woody Linton, in the Dietrich 8w, tumbling towards turn one. Scott Jones and Dave Haight stopped at the entrance of turn one too. Jones was pushed off from the scene. Haight was towed to the pits and continued before Linton's car was cleared from the track. Linton was unhurt but his car was damaged beyond immediate repair.
Kevin Gobrecht made a terrible start at the initial drop of the green. A full restart was lined up giving the New Oxford, PA driver a second chance to stay at the front. When green replaced red, Dewease jumped out to a comfortable lead. Bobby Allen stayed within six car lengths of Dewease in second. Kevin Gobrecht made a good start, but was unable to keep Allen from passing from his inside second row starting position. The inside low line was the fast way around.
Fred Rahmer, who started eighth, was fourth at the end of the first lap.
With nine laps complete, the yellow flag flew for the #46 of Chris Strait who spun in turn two. Strait was pushed off and continued.
On the restart, Sean Michael's left rear tire exploded as he sped towards turn one. The tire's hide landed in the front stretch grandstand while tire bits rained for several seconds after the car came to a rest in turn one. With no tire rule in place at Hagerstown, Michael's car was towed to the pits and the race resumed.
When the green flew again, Rahmer managed to get underneath Kevin Gobrecht going into turn one to take third. Anyone forced off the low line found themselves with no traction coming off the turns. Gobrecht slid high when Rahmer got by allowing Dan Jones and Kreitz to get past too.
Scott Jones spun in turn two bringing out the yellow with fourteen laps completed. Jones didn't hit anything and he continued.
Rahmer, now in third, made an outside move on Allen on the restart. There was nothing there as Rahmer settled back into line to watch Allen battle Dewease. Lapped traffic allowed Allen to pull within striking distance of Dewease. Allen was driving the 1a car harder than it had been driven in a long time but the track was too slick for side by side action.
With twenty four laps complete, the yellow flew once again. Wayne Iffland spun in turn four and backed his car into the end of the front stretch guard rail. Iffland continued.
The green flew for one lap as a fuel stop was scheduled at half distance.
Dewease led followed by Allen, Rahmer, Kreitz, Kevin Gobrecht, Dan Jones and Jess Thomas.
After a quick break for fuel, the racing resumed with Dewease once again pulling away from the field. Dewease's car ran well off the turns giving the Walt Dyer #461 a five car length margin over Allen in two laps.
By lap 37, Allen reeled in Dewease when the two entered lapped traffic. Bobby Allen showed that he's lost neither his fire nor determination as the 1a car stayed with Dewease as the two sliced through traffic.
Towards the end of the race, Allen had the faster car but Dewease stayed low in the fast lane. Allen was all over Dewease's fuel tank but could not make the outside move without loosing ground. With two laps to go, Dewease made an easy pass on Rohrbaugh, who was dicing with another backmarker. Allen got caught behind the pair and Dewease sailed under the checkered flag with a comfortable lead.
Hagerstown Speedway Octoberfest 350 Sprint Feature Results (50 laps)
1. 461 Lance Dewease ($10,000) 2. 1a Bobby Allen 3. 69k Don Kreitz 4. 77 Fred Rahmer 5. 1z Kevin Gobrecht 6. 8j Dan Jones 7. 77t Jess Thomas 8. 55 Mike Wagner 9. 45 Jeff Rohrbaugh 10. 7x Brian Gobrecht 11. 53 Shawn Keen 12. 13 Scott Jones 13. 8d Dan Dietrich 14. F1 French Grimes 15. 2c Mike Dillman 16. 46 Chris Strait 17. 7s Rick Schmelyun 18. 07 Dave Haight 19. 5w Wayne Iffland 20. 3 Bob Bennett 21. 88w Phil Walter 22. 88m Sean Michael 23. 8w Woody Linton 24. 16 Cliff Brian (DNS) 25. 1/2 Von McGee (DNS) 26. 29 Bill Brian (DNS)
Cliff Brian, Von McGee and Bill Brian did not return to Hagerstown to race in the feature.
David Reininger - Motorsport News International