Selinsgrove race summary 2002-08-31

Layton wins ninth in Sprints; Cochran collects career first in Late Models; Kratzer clinches Pro Stock win & title; Drum becomes leading Roadrunner winner. SELINSGROVE, Pa. - Chad Layton of Harrisburg demonstrated why he's the 2002 Cindy Rowe...

Layton wins ninth in Sprints; Cochran collects career first in Late Models; Kratzer clinches Pro Stock win & title; Drum becomes leading Roadrunner winner.

SELINSGROVE, Pa. - Chad Layton of Harrisburg demonstrated why he's the 2002 Cindy Rowe Auto Glass sprint car track champion for the second year in a row at Selinsgrove Speedway when he powered to his ninth victory of the season in Saturday's 25-lap main event.

For Layton, at the wheel of the Wholesale Auto U-1, the win marked the 21st of his career at the Snyder County oval entering the season-ending Alexander Family Dealerships Sprint Car Open on Saturday, September 14.

Brian Cochran of Montoursville drove to his first career late model win in the division's 25-lap main event and set a new track record of 9:37.34 for the distance. The former record of 9:42.93 was held by Jeff Smith since 1983.

Tony Adams of Sunbury clinched the late model championship on the first lap of the main event when fellow contender Dale Kerstetter of Liverpool flipped over his racer in turn four.

In the pro stock division, Gerald Kratzer of Selinsgrove won his fifth feature of the season in the 15-lap main event. Kratzer clinched the track title when Selinsgrove's Kyle Bachman withdrew from the race on the final lap with mechanical problems.

Matt Drum of Port Trevorton recorded his seventh roadrunner win in the 10-lap race. The Penn Mar Vintage Race Car Club events went to Phil Claussen of Oak Brook, Ill. (sportsman) and Lloyd Hockenberry of James Creek (modifieds).

Selinsgrove returns to racing action on Saturday, September 14 with the 20th Anniversary Alexander Family Dealerships Sprint Car open for 410's and 358's at 7 p.m. The event will feature twin 30-lap features for the sprint cars and two Chip Challenges sponsored by Middleswarth Potato Chips. Fireworks will also be a part of the show. The raindate is Sunday, September 15.

There is no racing scheduled at Selinsgrove Speedway on Saturday, September 7.

On the initial start of the sprint car feature, the race was red-flagged when fifth-place starter Joe Whitcomb crashed hard into the first turn wall. Whitcomb was not injured.

Outside front row starter John Smith took the lead when the race was restarted and was chased by sixth-place starter Jim Nace. With one lap completed, the caution flag unfurled when Blane Heimbach stopped on the frontstretch.

Darren Eash, who started 10th, drove by Nace for second on the fourth circuit and quickly reeled in Smith. On a lap six restart, Smith dueled with Eash for the lead entering turn one. Eash stormed around the outside of Smith and took command of the field exiting the second turn.

The caution flag slowed the race again on lap eighth when Adrian Shaffer's nose wing broke lose. Shaffer was able to rejoin the race after his crew removed the wing.

Eash checked out from the field, only to be a victim of circumstances when Jen Yinger's car spun in front of him entering turn three. Eash's crew reportedly changed a shock under the caution and sent their driver back on the track.

Smith found himself leading the race again with 14th-place starter Nate Snyder racing second and 12th-place starter Chad Layton restarting third. Layton moved into second on the 21st lap and drove under Smith in the second turn for the lead on the following circuit.

Layton posted a 3.47 margin of victory over Smith, Snyder, Rick Hench and TJ Stutts. Snyder's engine reportedly expired at the start/finish line.

On the start of the late model feature, a multi-car collision unfolded in turn four involving Bob Spahr, Donnie Schick, Jeff Rine, Jeff Smith, Mike Tudor, Scott Haus and Dale Kerstter, who flipped over in his racer. No driver injuries were reported and most drivers were able to restart the event.

When the race resumed, polesitter Robbie Smith took the lead and was chased by second-place starter Bill Karp and fourth-place starter Brian Cochran. Cochran advanced to second on the sixth lap, then set his sites on Smith.

Haus, who restarted at the rear of the field, stormed into third on lap nine and made it a three-car battle at the front of the pack. On the 15th circuit, Cochran made the winning pass on the inside of Smith in turns one and two. Haus followed Cochran into the runner up spot.

In the final laps, Cochran maintained a comfortable lead over Haus, who settled for second, and set a new 25-lap track record for late models. Dave Schulski, Smith and Eric Hons completed the top five.

Polesitter Ray Rothfuss led the first four laps of the pro stock feature until eighth-place starter Gerald Kratzer made the winning pass using the inside lane entering turn one on lap five.

On the 11th circuit, sixth-place starter Peanut Heintzelman stormed into second and reeled in Kratzer. While Kratzer and Heintzelman raced for the lead, point leader Kyle Bachman was biding his time in the top five to clinch the track title.

With one lap to race, while pacing under caution, Bachman's car rolled to a stop on the frontstretch with mechanical problems, ending his hopes of a first career track title.

Kratzer went on to win the race and title. Heintzelman finished second, followed by Matt Drum, Daryl Naiman and Rothfuss.

Following a multi-car pileup on the first lap of the roadrunner feature, original eighth-place starter Matt Drum took the lead and wired the field for the victory. Drum was chased by 2002 roadrunner champion Billy McNeal to the wire. Rick Bixlier, Dave Riddell and Dennis Conrad completed the top five.


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About this article
Series Sprint , Stock car
Drivers Jeff Smith