Busy Night At Lernerville Sees Wild Wrecks
Rex King Jr. held on to finish fourth after his near washout in the closing laps. Rex King Sr. finished fifth ahead of Tom Winkle, Brad Rapp, Chris Haines, Steve Feder and Jeremiah Shingledecker. Heats were checkered by Mat Williamson and Tom Winkle.
Both Dave Murdick and Brian Swartzlander took a quick swig of cold water and strapped right back into their respective Precise Late Models owned by Jimmie Pitkavish and Jim Detman respectively for what seemed more like a rolling demolition than a 25-lap feature early in the stages. Garrett Krummert slid into a brief lead in turns one & two, only to see two-time feature winner Russ King check up, cross under and pass him down the back straightaway and into turn three to officially take the lead on lap one.
Krummert slid off the top of turn two on lap five and lost several spots, but despite being saved by the caution, he had to take it pitside with a flat LR. King chose the outside position for the restart and paid for it as contact with John Garvin Jr. resulted in King sliding off the back.
The next six laps clicked off one at a time for a series of cautions, but Ferree took the lead from Garvin on one of those restarts. During those cautions, in no particular order; King was sent sailing off turn two and down towards the puckerbrush; Boom Briggs and John Garvin Jr. got together on the front straightaway which resulted in Garvin and Geisler violently sailing off turn one; Mike Norris clipped the inside of turn three and flipped wildly; Ken Schaltenbrand broke; Shaun Jones spun out in the Rhodes CR9; Dan Angelicchio went to the pits with a flat; and Russ King jumped the cushion again in turn two then retired to the pits; thus the aforementioned week late effect of a full moon on Friday the 13th.
The race actually became a race again on the lap 14 restart with Alex Ferree on the pole and Solom, VAs Mike Benedum in his Lernerville debut on the front row. Hess restarted third, but made quick work of Benedum to take second and so began his pursuit of a red hot Alex Ferree.
By lap 20, Hess was reeling in Ferree on an open track. Hess briefly took the lead exiting turn two, as Ferree slid off the back. Ferree battled back and held the lead at the flagstand, but Hess carried the momentum into turn one and took the lead clear down the back chute. Once out front, Hess dashed to the checkered flag to score his 15th career Super Late Model feature in his season debut and in doing so pocketed a track provisional for next weekends 8th Annual Firecracker 100 presented by GottaRace.com.
Alex Ferree tailed Hess to the checkers and is also locked into Saturday Nights $30,000-to-win, 100-lap A-Main by virtue of being the current Budweiser Points leader. WoO LMS star Chub Frank and traveler Mike Benedum came from mid-pack to finish third and fourth in a Firecracker tune-up. After finishing third in the Diehl Mods feature, S
Swartzlander turned in a fifth place finish in the Precise Lates feature. Lynn Geisler, Boom Briggs, Dave Murdick, Chuck Sarver and Gary Lyle rounded out the Precise Top Ten. Heats went to Boom Briggs, Dan Angelicchio and John Garvin Jr., while Todd Bachman picked up the B-Main win.