Decision To Race Pays Off For Duncan
ORRVILLE, Ohio – After the weekend he had, Cole Duncan and his family had thought about just sitting at home Sunday. Good thing the Lockbourne, Ohio driver changed his mind.
Duncan took the lead with just two laps to go after race-long leader Jac Haudenschild blew a left rear tire, and went on to score his first career University of Northwestern Ohio All Star Circuit of Champions victory at the NAPA Wayne County Speedway. Haudenschild, driving for fellow hall-of-famer Rick Ferkel lead the first 26 laps of the 30 lap feature before his left rear tire blew.
During the two day show at Attica on Friday and Saturday, Duncan’s family own team suffered a motor problem Friday and then broke a rear-end on Saturday.
“Oh my God. I don’t even know what to say. We weren’t even going to come today. We woke up and unloaded it out of the trailer and we were going to leave it in the shop for the week and go at it next week. Holy crap I’m glad we came,” said Duncan, whose father Rodney was a staple on the UNOH All Star circuit in the 1980s and 1990s.
“I didn’t even see Jac leave the track. I saw the tire laying on the back stretch. Man I hate that for Rick (Ferkel, Jac’s car owner for the night) and Jac and those guys. Especially Rick, he works so hard and he deserved this win. But we’ll take it after the weekend we’ve had,” continued Duncan.
“We raced with Andrew (Palker) a lot here last year. He’s a good racer obviously as he’s won the track championship twice in the last two years…that’s pretty impressive. To get to race with him, we raced each other clean and it was a hell of a lot of fun,” continued Palker. “First I have to thank my Mom and Dad and my two grandpas and my crew. They worked their asses off to get us here. I’ve been waiting a long time for this.”
Local driver Dean Jacobs capped off a great weekend and celebrated his 50th birthday in style by bringing the Joe and Diane Seeling owned #97 home in second.
“They were telling me I was getting old and I had to prove them wrong. We were good. I actually thought I was better than Cole. You couldn’t hardly see to enter this corner (turn one) from the dust but if you could get in there you could run the crap out of the thing. Cole was doing the exact same thing that I was and that’s why he beat me I guess,” said Jacobs. “We needed this. Joe and Diane Seeling have given me a nice race car and I try my hardest. Sometimes it bites you and sometimes you have good results like tonight. Now we’re going to go celebrate my birthday and have a lot of fun.”
“I thought I had run fourth and we came around and saw that Cole won. I don’t know if I was happy I ran second or just as happy that he won. I raced a lot of races with his dad and his dad beat me a lot. I was just telling him the other night because he was so good at Attica that as soon as he gets that first one they will start coming. Let me tell you, that boy is going to win a lot of races,” added Jacobs.
Track champion Andrew Palker kept his impressive run going with a third place finish after running second through much of the race.
“I just didn’t hear Cole up top and I should have put up there in the crap and cooled that tire off but I spent too much time on the bottom. And I got my right rear too hot and there at the end it was just too hot and I had nothing left. I can’t say enough about this team and Kistler Racing Products and Brian Kemenah and Paul Kistler. They are helping us out a bunch. We are sure learning a lot out here right now and it’s really showing when we came back home,” said Palker.
Newly crowned Lernerville Speedway champion Brandon Spithaler and Haudenschild would bring the field to green with Haudenschild rim-riding into the lead. Just three laps in third place running Lee Jacobs would spin with Brad Haudenschild stopping to avoid a collision. On the restart Haudenschild would rocket away from Spithaler with Duncan, Palker, Jacobs, Dale Blaney and Trey Gustin in tow.
Palker would move into third on lap six and would take second two circuits later. The caution would fly on lap nine for a Caleb Helms spin. On the restart Haudenschild would again blast into a commanding lead with Palker comfortably in second while Spithaler, Duncan, Blaney and Jacobs battled for third.
The caution would come out again on lap 12 as Lee Jacobs’ mount stopped on the front stretch with brake issues. The restart order was Haudenschild, Palker, Blaney, Duncan, Spithaler and Dean Jacobs. The field didn’t stay under green long as Jack Sodeman Jr. and Shawn Hubler got together on lap 12.
When the green reappeared Palker dove under Haudenschild in turns one and two, but “The Wild Child” rocketed off the cushion to pull away. As the laps ticked off Haudenschild built a sizeable lead over Palker as Blaney, Duncan and Jacobs battled for third.
The leaders would catch the back of the field on lap 18 and as most of the field ran the bottom, Haudenschild used the very top groove to pick off the lapped cars. Disaster nearly struck for Haudenschild with five laps to go as he jumped the heavy cushion in turn four and nearly got into the front stretch fence. That allowed Palker, Blaney, Duncan, Dean Jacobs and a closing Tim Shaffer to make up ground.
With seven laps to go Blaney would retire to the infield with mechanical woes, moving Duncan into third. As Haudenschild exited turn two on lap 27, his left rear tire would explode and he limped his mount back to the pits, handing the lead to Palker with Duncan, Dean Jacobs and Shaffer ready to pounce.
Duncan would drive around Palker for the lead with just two laps to go with Jacobs sneaking by on the white flag lap for second.
Duncan would drive to the win over Jacobs, Palker, Shaffer (from 11th), Rob Chaney, Danny Holtgraver (from 20th), Danny Mumaw (from 22nd), Brock Martin (from 16th), Spithaler and Gustin.