Darren Eash Dominates For 410 Series Opener Win Gerald Kratzer wins pro stocks SELINSGROVE, PA -- Last season, Darren Eash of Ijamsville, MD., captured the season opener for 358 powered sprint cars at Selinsgrove Speedway. Friday night, he did...
Darren Eash Dominates For 410 Series Opener Win
Gerald Kratzer wins pro stocks
SELINSGROVE, PA -- Last season, Darren Eash of Ijamsville, MD., captured the season opener for 358 powered sprint cars at Selinsgrove Speedway. Friday night, he did one better by claiming the season opener at the track, the first race in the five-date 2004 Susquehanna Valley 410 Sprint Series.
Prior to the race, Eash commented that he loves the speedway but his three-hour trip to and from the track makes him wish he could move it a lot closer. He left the oval this time with something to make his trip a little shorter, the $2,500 winner's share. But he still doesn't like the drive.
"That was a lot of fun," exclaimed Eash in victory lane. "Can't you move this track down in Southern Pennsylvania somewhere?"
"This race track was like a freeway tonight, not a bump anywhere. I looked back a couple times and I didn't see nobody, I knew we were good," said Eash of his No. 22 owned by Jim and Sandy Kline of Grantville.
Good was an understatement. At no time was Eash challenged.
He jumped from his second starting spot into the lead and immediately stretched out a comfortable lead over polesittter Todd Shaffer. He entered lapped traffic with four laps completed followed by Shaffer, Keith Kauffman, Lance Dewease and Mark Smith.
Greg Hodnett of Memphis, Tenn., who started 20th after losing an engine in the second heat event, appeared to lose another on the sixth circuit when he pulled pitside with flames visible under the hood. Prior to his bad luck, Hodnett had raced into the top ten but his ill fate placed the field on Eash's tail.
Another caution with ten completed found the running order the same.
The red flag appeared with seven laps remaining for a flip outside the second turn fence by Kevin Nouse of Lewisberry who was piloting the Pete Postupack No. 25, replacing driver Adrian Shaffer. Nouse was not injured.
The final laps again saw Eash drive off from the field to his second career 410 victory at the Snyder County oval by a margin of 2.44 seconds. Shaffer of Millerstown settled for second followed by Kauffman, Mifflintown; Fred Rahmer, Salfordville; and Dewease, Fayetteville.
Sixth through tenth went to Brook Weibley, York Springs; Josh Wells, Thomasville; Blane Heimbach, Selinsgrove; Chad Layton, Harrisburg; and Mike Erdley, Elizabethville. Mark Smith pulled withdrew after the red flag.
"This is awesome," said Eash. "That was the best race car I ever sat in. I didn't even have to turn the wheel, I went into the corner and it turned itself. That thing was like a cadillac, no doubt about it. We didn't change a thing on that racecar all night long."
Heats went to Kauffman, Dewease and Smith. Ryan Coniam of Burlington, Ontario, Canada flipped in the third qualifier but escaped injury.
In the 15-lap pro stock feature, Gerald Kratzer led laps five through eight before relinquishing the point to AJ Stroup until the final corner.
Kratzer made an outside move in the final two corners to take the win. Troy Miller led the first four laps before Kratzer took over initially. It was his 12th career oval win.
Stoup settle for second followed by Bill Pyle, Steve Woodward, Dan Jenson.
Pro Stock heats went to Peanut Heintzelman and Bill Pyle.
3/26 RACE SUMMARY
Sprint Cars -- 23 Entries
Feature (25 Laps): 1. Darren Eash, 2. Todd Shaffer, 3. Keith Kauffman, 4. Fred Rahmer, 5. Lance Dewease, 6. Brook Weibley, 7. Josh Wells, 8. Blane Heimbach, 9. Chad Layton, 10. Mike Erdley, 11. Ron Kramer, 12. Todd Hestor, 13. Mark Smith, 14. Mark Coldren, 15. Kevin Nouse, 16. Bob Bennett, 17. TJ Stutts, 18. Charlie Anderson, 19. Greg Hodnett, 20. Bob Beidleman, 21. Curt Stroup, 22. Randy Baughman, 23. Ryan Coniam.
Heat winners (8 Laps): Keith Kauffman, Lance Dewease, Mark Smith
Pro Stocks -- 21 Entries
Heat winners (5 laps):Peanut Heintzelman, Bill Pyle
Feature finish (15 laps): 1. Gerald Kratzer, 2. AJ Stroup, 3. Bill Pyle, 4. Steve Woodward, 5. Dan Jenson, 6. Jim Jurasich, 7. Bill Conrad, 8. Jake Buck, 9. Sam Troup, 10. AJ Hoffman, 11. Todd Kiger, 12. Rob Stoneroad, 13. Daryn Niaman, 14. Troy Miller, 15. Peanut Heintzelman, 16. Gary Beward, 17. Nate Kerstetter, 18. Meade Hahn, 19. Dave Newcomer, 20. Dave Brouse, Jr., 21. Brad Trump