Lernerville II: Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup report

Lynch wins Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup. SARVER, PA (July 23)-- Ed Lynch, Jr., has been chasing Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series racers at Lernerville Speedway for years. Beating them for the first time Tuesday before a standing-room-only...

Lynch wins Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup.

SARVER, PA (July 23)-- Ed Lynch, Jr., has been chasing Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series racers at Lernerville Speedway for years. Beating them for the first time Tuesday before a standing-room-only crowd in the 11th Annual Don Martin Memorial Silver Cup moved Lynch to within one victory of first place on Lernerville's all-time sprint car victory list.

Lynch exchanged the lead with defending and five-time Silver Cup winner Mark Kinser, Kings Royal winner Joey Saldana and 1993 track champion Tim Shaffer five times on his way to claiming the $35,000 first prize.

"The Lernerville fans can be proud and hold their heads up tonight," Lynch yelled to the crowd, which stood through most of the classic race. "The World of Outlaws (drivers) are the best in the world, and it was Don Martin's dream, along with Ted Johnson, to have these guys in here and put on a great show. I just hope everyone here tonight enjoyed it. Ouch (Roenigk) did a great job with the track. Just two more wins here and we'll get it (the record for most feature victories at Lernerville). We're going to be gone for a couple of weeks. We're going to Knoxville (Raceway) a couple of times, but then we'll be back."

Lynch, who leads the Lernerville Speedway point standings, has increased his career victory total to 54-- one behind Johnny Beaber-- with five victories this season. Lynch is the 13th driver to win a Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series main event in 2002.

Lynch, who destroyed a car two weekends ago at Sharon Speedway, was driving a new J&J chassis equipped with a new Kistler engine. He was the seventh-fastest qualifier in the 36-car field and earned the right to start the 40-lap main event on the pole by winning the First O'Reilly Auto Parts Dash.

Lynch and Second O'Reilly Auto Parts Dash winner Mark Kinser raced wheel-to-wheel down the front straightaway as the green flag fell in the "A" Feature. Kinser surged ahead in the high groove in the second corner and led the first two laps.

Lynch took the lead two laps later, however, when Kinser's #5M Mopar Maxim slid over the edge of turn two. Joey Saldana, who also passed Kinser, was eight car-lengths behind when Lynch entered lapped traffic during the fifth lap.

Stevie Smith, who won the May 15th Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series "A" Feature at Lernerville Speedway, lost third place when the #11H Vivarin Maxim turned completely around in turn four late in lap seven. Although Smith kept the engine fired, he lost nine positions and the caution flag fell. Smith passed Craig Dollansky for seventh place deep in the fourth corner two laps after the race resumed.

Lynch was 10 car-lengths ahead of his closest pursuers when he caught the back-markers during lap 13. Saldana threatened to take the lead in the low groove between turns three and four two laps later, but was unable to surge ahead.

Second Heat Race winner Donny Schatz drove his #15 Parker Stores J&J into seventh place from inside the eighth row during the first half of the race. The 1997 Kevin Gobrecht Rookie of the Year award winner passed Jac Haudenshild and Randy Hannagan during laps 22 and 25.

After battling Shaffer for second place for several laps, Saldana passed Lynch deep in turn one. Lynch regained the lead several seconds later, however, steering his #2L Indy Recycling/ Commercial Truck & Trailer J&J into the low groove in the third corner to pass Saldana and slid in front of him in turn four.

Saldana, Schatz and Hannagan collided in the first corner early in lap 30, causing Saldana to roll over. Shaffer kept pace with Lynch was the green flag replaced the red, racing wheel-to-wheel with him through turn one and down the back straightaway. Lynch surged ahead in the fourth corner, only to have Shaffer drive the #83 Beef Packers Eagle past him in the high groove between turns one and two early in the 32nd lap.

Lynch chased Shaffer for a lap before regaining the lead deep in the second corner. Greg Hodnett stopped on the front straightaway early in lap 33, bringing out the caution flag and tightening the 24-car field.

Shaffer raced into the lead in the low groove between turns one and two early in the 35th lap, but Lynch rode the rim around him in the fourth corner several seconds later. The 1999 Rookie of the Year raced with Lynch through turns three and four with 2 1/3 laps remaining, but was unable to complete the pass. Shaffer was four car-lengths behind when Lynch took the checkered flag.

"Mark got a great start and then he slid off the edge," Lynch said. "Then Joey and Tim were really trying, but we knew the track a little better... and this was for $35,000."

Kinser finished in third place, ahead of Jac Haudenschild, Steve Kinser, Smith, 17th-starting Sammy Swindell, Dollansky, Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series points leader Danny Lasoski and P.J. Chesson.

Steve Kinser, who has won 12 main events at Lernerville in his career, closed to within three points of first place in the Pennzoil World of Outlaws Series standings with his 31st top-five finish of the year.

-WoO

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About this article
Series World of Outlaws
Drivers Mark Kinser , Danny Lasoski , Donny Schatz , Steve Kinser , Sammy Swindell , Craig Dollansky , Joey Saldana , Randy Hannagan , P.J. Chesson , Jac Haudenschild