Todd Andrews Scores Little Valley RRS Late Model Win (Little Valley) RRS late model point leader Todd Andrews from Eldred, PA, padded his advantage with a convincing triumph in the 30 lap feature over a strong field of cars at Little Valley ...
Todd Andrews Scores Little Valley RRS Late Model Win
(Little Valley) RRS late model point leader Todd Andrews from Eldred, PA, padded his advantage with a convincing triumph in the 30 lap feature over a strong field of cars at Little Valley Speedway on Thursday, July 22. With rain forecast to soak the area, fans and drivers were greeted by sunny skies at the start of the evening, darkened only by a few clouds and a scary crash during the first late model heat race that sent driver Rod Maloy from Panama, NY, to the Erie County Medical Center by way of Mercy Flight. Andrews took the lead on a lap 13 restart, lost it briefly, retook it on lap 16 and was never threatened thereafter. The win was worth $3,000.
Ed Carley took the lead at the outset, but Dutch Davies was the man on the move as he dove under Carley and his brother Ron in turn two to take the lead on lap 3. Dutch, who blew away the opposition in his heat and looked very strong, held sway until a lap 5 restart, when Ron, who had gotten past Carley for second, drove around him in turn four to take the point.
While Ron was opening a lead, Andrews was patiently picking his way forward, claiming third on lap 9 and second on lap 12. A caution on lap 13 put him on Davies' bumper for the restart. Andrews took the lead immediately after the green flag as Davies slipped high in turn one. Davies wasn't finished yet as he retook the lead, powering past Andrews on lap 15. This was Andrews night, however, as he got the lead back one lap later, hugging the bottom as Davies once again drifted high, this time slapping the wall in turn two. Davies explained, "We lost our tires. The right rear tire got blistered on us, and we kind of just hung on the rest of the race. The tires just weren't good enough. We're probably the only ones here on Hoosier tires. We just had a little too soft one on the right rear. The track got harder than I thought it was going to. Just lost the right rear tire. Made the car loose."
Andrews then drew out to a comfortable advantage while David Scott engaged Dutch Davies in a battle for third, and ultimately claiming the spot as Andrews was surging away from Ron Davies. The only challenge remaining for Andrews was lapped traffic, which he deftly negotiated over the final laps. At the line it was Andrews well ahead, followed by Ron Davies, Scott, Dutch Davies, and Bill Cunningham, who was making a rare start at Little Valley. Bob Close, had a strong sixth after starting nineteenth.
Andrews who set the tone earlier in the evening by dramatically winning his heat after starting last (taking the lead after only 3 laps), and is known as a bottom feeder, noted, "I was hoping the top would go away and the bottom would come in better. We had the car set up for the low side. That's where the plan was." About whether he thought he could regain the lead from Davies, he added, "You always doubt, but you always think you can too." Regarding the track slickening during the race, he said, "Oh, yea, it kept getting slower and slower."
Scott was generally happy with third, declaring, "It was a fair third. We were decent. Todd just spanked us. I mean, he was in a different league. We started eighth, got third, didn't tear anything up. That's all right, but we've definitely got to pick up the pace if we're going to keep up with Todd."
The 20 lap super stock feature went to Todd Hansen from Franklinville, who worked his way to the front on lap 11, slipping past leader John Lichy on lap 11 after running him down, and then surviving a lap 19 caution to claim the win and a $1,000 check. Hansen, who has not had a good season so far, explained his change in fortune, declaring, "Just kept the car down on the bottom, kept my cool, slowed the car down. The bottom was faster than the top. I found that out on the get-go." Asked if he had any doubt he would catch Lichy, who had built a sizable lead, he replied emphatically, "Nope, no doubt."
Ryan Learn, also from Franklinville, recorded his second 15 lap street stock feature in commanding fashion and collecting $500. After dominating his heat from the pole, he started sixth in the feature, took the lead on lap 5, and drove away to the win, easily weathering a lap 9 caution along the way. "Good handling race car. That's the key to it all," Learn declared, adding, "That low groove will get you every time. If you can get it on the bottom you can do well here. It's the quickest way around the race track. The track was a little slippery, but we managed."
Ron Foster from Steamburg went wire to wire to win the 10 lap school bus race.
NOTES: The incident that sent Maloy to the hospital was set up when the No. 4 of Mark Osburn from Kingsville, Ohio, and the No. 78 of Maloy got hooked together on the front straightaway. As they broke loose, Maloy's car ended up sideways on the race track in front of the starter's stand. The yellow flew immediately and at least one car drove past Maloy when, inexplicably, the No. 26G of George LaBarbara from Sugar Grove, PA, slammed into Maloy at full speed, hitting him just behind the driver's door. Maloy ended up slumped over, while LaBarbara, though stunned, was eventually able to emerge from his car on his own. Starter Johnny Powell raced to the scene and noted that Maloy was out cold when he arrived, but came to a short time later. Maloy was administered to by emergency personnel, who immediately summoned Mercy Flight when it was determined he was bleeding from the nose and ears. He was conscious and had feeling in all of his extremities when he was removed from the scene. There was no word on his condition. LaBarbara was treated and released from a local hospital after complaining of soreness and some bruises.....The "Ageless Wonder," Ron Baker, scored an impressive win in his super stock heat, coming from the rear after making contact with the leader while sparring for the top spot and being sent to the back.........Despite the threat of bad weather and rain in the region, a good field of cars was on hand on a week night, including 26 late models, 31 super stocks, and 21 street stocks......There was also a good crowd on hand, who were on the way home by 10:15, despite the 45 minute red flag for the Maloy incident......The next racing at Little Valley will be on August 27th when the Empire Super Sprints return.
Late Model Finish: (30 lap) Todd Andrews, Ron Davies, David Scott, Dutch Davies, Bill Cunningham, Bob Close, Rick Isadore, Scott Gurdak, Kirk Bradley, Dick Barton, John Lobb, Brent Rhebergen, Chad Ruhlman, David Hess, Marshall Schunk, Chevy Scott, John Haggerty, Moose Dunnewold, Doug Ricotta, JC Lechner, Jeff Hoffman, Mark Osburn, Steve Halpainy, and Ed Carley. Heat winners were Cunningham, Dutch Davies, and Andrews.
Super Stock Feature: (20 laps) Todd Hansen, Todd Rice, Dustin Croft, Darren Kish, John Lichy, TJ Shaw, Bob Dixon, Ron Baker, Jason Dupont, Alan Wais, Bo Clark, Tim Rockwell, Jeremy Wonderling, Terry Pangrazio, Matt Cobb, Don Wagner, Tom Schnars, Jason Tingue, Jr. Peters, Todd Shaw, Dean Ingalls, Andy Miller, Bob Babbitt, Bill Holmes, Tim Kauffman, and Don Krug. Heat winners were Croft, Baker, and Hansen. Consi winner was Bo Clark.
Street Stock Finish: (15 laps) Ryan Learn, Damon Lewis, Mike Numeracki, Lance Palmer, Andy Michael, Josh Wilcox, Wade Mohawk, Jason Schoonmaker, Jason Dobson, Kevin Pangrazio, Jason Smallidge, Chuck Biniarz, Tony Witter, Rocco Conte Jr., Pat Clark, Justin Baxter, Colin Kulpa, Josh Silleman, Steve Dixon, Ron Hebner, and Doug Cobb. Heat winners were Lewis, Palmer, and Learn.
School Bus Finish: (10 laps) Ron Foster, Gary Reynolds, Kirby Schultz, Ellis Troxell, and Kenny Foster.