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Dewease Wins Night before the 50 at Port Royal Speedway

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Bert Wojo

PORT ROYAL, PA (September 11, 2020): Lance Dewease got to do something that very few Sprint Car drivers have been able to do this season: he chased down and passed Kyle Larson for the win on the Night before the 50 at Port Royal Speedway. After struggling on a tacky and fast track Thursday night, Dewease and the Dream Team decided to race on Friday night to get a better idea of what the conditions may be like for the big event. They were planning to take the night off to get ready for the big show on Saturday but a tenth place run the night before may have changed their minds. They collected $6,000 and the second guaranteed starting spot for the big race.

Dewease is a member of the National Sprint Car Hall of Fame, and so are his car owner, Don Kreitz, Jr., and his crew chief, Davey Brown. They have made a habit of winning major events since teaming up several seasons ago. Last night, he remarked that his team has been flying under the radar for most of the season, and he thought that may have been a good thing. But, there is no hiding now. Dewease branded himself as a favorite to gain his seventh triumph in this marquee event.

Dewease showed the patience and confidence of a veteran racer. While his younger adversaries, Larson and Anthony Macri were pounding the cushion, Dewease stayed in the middle of the track. But, he found a good line low in turns three and four, which he used to drive by Larson and Macri, much to the delight of the large crowd on hand.

“That’s the only way we can beat those guys,” Dewease said modestly. “Anthony is getting really good here and Kyle is the best in the business now.” Dewease added that he defeated Larson on the links Friday and it was fun to beat his friend on the track. “He (Larson) waived at me when he passed me a couple of weeks ago, but I didn’t waive at him when I passed him. He’s too good right now to do that. I didn’t hear him after I got by him.”

Kerry Madsen and Larson had the front row starting spots from their respective dash wins. Macri and Dewease lined up in row tow. Brent Marks and Cory Eliason, last night’s winner, were in row three. Aaron Reutzel and Tyler Courtney were in row four and Cale Thomas and Dylan Cisney were in row five. Ian Madsen and Rico Abreu were in row six.

While Madsen led the charge into turn one, he was unable to keep Larson at bay. Larson rode the inside line in the first two turns to emerge with the early lead. Macri soon followed suit to gain second. Dewease drove by Madsen on lap three.

Larson and Macri started to separate themselves from the rest of the field, but the first and only caution, on lap four for Paul McMahan, closed up the field.

Larson zoomed out front when the green light flashed on and Macri was goving chase. Meanwhile, Dewease stayed within range. As the leaders got into traffic, things tightend up. Macri began pressing Larson, and Dewease was closing the gap. Macri slid under Larson at one point, but Larson maintained his momentum and drove back around the six-time winner to regain the lead. Soon, however, it was a three-car battle royale for the lead.

Dewease challenged Macri for second, but fell back a few car lengths when they ran up on some slower traffic. He fought back and set up an inside move to pass both Macri and Larson as the trio swept through turns three and four with about five to go. He negotiated the last five circuits without difficulty.

“I was pretty comfortable with the car,” Dewease said. “I could keep pace with them. I felt like we’d be OK as long as they didn’t get back into clean air.” Luck was on his side as there wer no other cautions in the contest, so Dewease did not have to worry about chasing down Larson or Macri on a clear track.”

Three Rivers Karting

Macri thought that he may have used his tires too much in chasing down Larson. “I was maintaining, but I kinda used my tire when I got up to him.”

Larson’s comments were similar to those of Dewease. “I felt good early when I had a clean track.” He started to have problems, though, when he was approaching the slower cars ahead of him. “When I was within a straight, things got pretty dirty and I couldn’t get grip. I was searching and I couldn’t get off the corners like they could.”

Dewease was the winner, with Macri second. Larson crossed in third. Dylan Cisney put in a great performance getting fourth. Kerry Madsen was fifth. Marks, Abreu, Danny Dietrich, Eliason, and Ian Madsen rounded out the top ten.

Heat victories went to Cisney, Abreu, Dewease, Larson, and Reutzel. The C Main winner was Alan Krimes. Freddie Rahmer, Jr. won the B Main. Macri was the evening’s fastest qualifier.

In the 25 lap Super Late Model finale, Jeff Rine took advantage of a restart with fifteen laps in the books to pass Trent Brenneman, who lead from the drop of the green. The restart was set up by an incident in turn one that eliminated three cars in the top ten at the time: Kyle Lee, Marvin Winters and Trevor Feathers.

Rine was followed across the line by Brenneman, ageless Gary Stuhler, Ross Robinson, and Dylan Yoder. Colton Flinner, who raced as high as third, fell back to sixth at the finish. He was trailed by Dan Stone, Andy Haus, Brett Schadel, and Jim Yoder. Haus’s seventh was good enough to clinch the track championship in this division.

Heat wins were scored by Brenneman, Robinson, and Feathers. There was no B Main.

Saturday night, Port Royal Speedway will host the fifty-third annual Tuscarora 50. Gates will open at 2 p.m. and the racing will begin at 6 p.m. It will be a Sprint Car only show. $53,000 will be paid to the winner.

A-Main (30 Laps)
1. 69K-Lance Dewease [4]; 2. 39M-Anthony Macri [3]; 3. 57-Kyle Larson [2]; 4. 5C-Dylan Cisney [10]; 5. 24-Rico Abreu [12]; 6. 2M-Kerry Madsen [1]; 7. 26-Cory Eliason [6]; 8. 5-Brent Marks [5]; 9. 48-Danny Dietrich [13]; 10. 17-Ian Madsen [11]; 11. 70-Cale Thomas [9]; 12. 3Z-Brock Zearfoss [27]; 13. 51-Freddie Rahmer [21]; 14. 7BC-Tyler Courtney [8]; 15. 87-Aaron Reutzel [7]; 16. 1-Logan Wagner [18]; 17. 98-Jared Esh [24]; 18. 99-Skylar Gee [16]; 19. 11T-TJ Stutts [14]; 20. 11-Zeb Wise [17]; 21. 55-Mike Wagner [22]; 22. 39T-Justin Peck [19]; 23. 21-Brian Brown [23]; 24. 42-Sye Lynch [20]; 25. 13-Paul McMahan [25]; 26. 18-Gio Scelzi [15]; 27. 25-Tyler Bear [26] Lap Leaders: Kyle Larson (1-24), Lance Dewease (25-30).

2020 All Star Circuit of Champions Driver Standings: (As of September 11, 2020)
1. Aaron Reutzel – 5236
2. Cory Eliason – 5154
3. Zeb Wise – 4814
4. Paul McMahan – 4664
5. Skylar Gee – 4556
6. Greg Wilson – 4396
7. Josh Baughman – 3858
8. Danny Dietrich – 2992
9. Brock Zearfoss – 2896
10. Kyle Larson – 2888

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Jennerstown Crowns Champions

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JENNERSTOWN, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Jennerstown Speedway is celebrating after crowning its 2020 Champions Saturday night.

Barry Awtey started the Late Model division feature from the pole position with Albert Francis, the points leader going into the race, starting tenth and Teddy Gibala (third place in points) starting 12th.  All three Championship contenders were lined up 1-2-3 by lap 20 with Gibala and Francis chasing Awtey but they did not have enough and Awtey picked up his second win of 2020.  Despite the valiant effort of winning the race and leading the most laps, Awtey fell short in the title fight as Francis earned the title by four points.

Tom Golick picked up his second win of 2020 in the Modified division feature.  John Fama scored a career-best second place finish followed by Jason Busch in third.  Anthony Aiello finished fourth to clinch the Championship, his third consecutive Modified title.

Three Rivers Karting

Casey Fleegle started on the pole position in the Street Stocks feature and never looked back, holding off Josh Coughenour and championship contender Aaron Van Fleet. Fleegle earned the title of 2020 Champion by a slim margin of ten points over Van Fleet on the strength of a division-leading six wins.

Rookie Kyle Burkholder earned his first victory on a paved track by taking the checkered flag in the Chargers 15-lap feature.  Dale Kimberly finished second followed by Steven Singo in third place.  Kimberly took home the Championship for the third year in-a-row.

Evan Nibert captured the checkered flag in the 4-Cylinders feature.  Jeff Vasos finished second with Steve Settle coming home in third place. Vasos took home the Championship, finishing 57-points ahead of his closest competition.

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Gallagher Aces Applefest Sprints, Rudolph Doubles in Mods at Tri-City Raceway Park

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Tri-City Raceway Park

FRANKLIN, PA (September 20, 2020): Darin Gallagher picked a perfect time to score his first career 410 Sprint Car victory. After sliding his mentor, Jack Sodeman, Jr., for the lead, Gallagher had to fend off a strong challenge from Dan Shetler to earn the $5,000 Applefest payday At Tri-City Raceway Park. But, Erick Rudolph had the most profitable weekend, scoring $4,000 wins in both the Big Block Modifieds and the 358 Modifieds.

Other victories were scored by Jeff Schaffer (Crate Modifieds), Zack Morrow (RUSH Sprint Cars), Chris Schneider (Pro Stocks), and Pat Hanlon (Mini Stocks).

“This feels great, I’m ecstatic,” Gallagher gushed after his impressive victory. “I had to slide Jack to get the lead, and I’ve never done that before.” Gallagher then commented, “I was running so hard. Dan (Shetler) and I have a lot of respect for each other and I knew that we could run close like that.”

Indeed, Shetler chased Gallagher down and he did take the lead away, but Gallagher rallied and ran the outside line to regain the lead after a few laps racing side by side. “That’s an old Dash 12 that I bought last year and I think that I lost a cylinder,” Gallagher said. “I dont know if it was a bad spark plug or something internal,” but on the slick surface the lack of horsepower could have been his ace in the hole. “I wasn’t spinning my wheels, I was able to use everything it had.”

Sodeman, who was gunning for a track championship, started on the pole for the 30 lapper. Next to him was A.J. Flick. Gallagher and Shetler were in row two, with Dan Kuriger and Carl Bowser in row three. Brandon Spithaler, who entered the final points race trailing Sodeman by just six markers, was in row four, along with George Hobaugh, Jr. Sye Lynch and Brandon Matus made up row five.

At the drop of the green, Sodeman took the lead, with Flick, Gallagher, Shetler, and Kuriger in tow.

While Sodeman led, Spithaler began to work his way to the front. He reached second by lap nine, when the race was slowed for debris in turn one. Spithaler was pressing Sodeman for the lead after the restart, but on lap ten, his title hopes took a major blow. Spithaler spun in turn two and had to start at the rear of the field.

The drama began to build soon thereafter. Sodeman was being challenged by his protege. Just after Gallagher slid Sodeman in turn two to grab the lead, Kuriger powered into second. Sodeman started falling back through the field, while Spithaler was marching forward.

Gallagher began to put some distance on Kuriger in the middle stage of the race. Kuriger’s run came to an end on lap 22, when he spun in turn four. By that time, Spithaler had passed Sodeman, but he needed some help. He was only two positions ahead when the race resumed.

In the final nine laps, Gallagher and Shetler battled for the lead. Shetler started cutting into
Gallagher’s advantage and the engine in Gallagher’s machine started to sputter. Shetler took the lead, but Gallagher stayed close. They ran side by side for a few laps, while Flick started to close in as well.

Gallagher would not give up, though, and he drove by Shetler in turns one and two with just a couple of laps remaining. Shetler continued to give chase, but Gallagher was flawless.

At the finish, it was the young Butler pilot raising his hand in victory. Shetler was second, followed by Flick, Bowser, and Spithaler. Brandon Matus was sixth and Sodeman seventh, good enough to clinch the championship by a slim margin of two points unofficially. Jeremy Kornbau, Hobaugh, and Brent Matus completed the top ten.

Gallagher, Flick, and Sodeman won heats held on Saturday. There was no B Main.

In the Big Block Modified feature, Empire State drivers Chad Brachmann and Erick Rudolph had the front row. Shawn Kozar and Rex King, Sr. were in row two, with Garrett Krummert and Jeremiah Shingledecker in row three. Jim Rasey and Rick Regalski were in row four. Steve Barr and J.R. McGinley were in row five.

Rudolph slid under Brachmann entering turn one on the opening lap. Brachmann skid across the slick surface and lost six positions as Rudolph pulled away. King Sr. move into second, followed by Shingledecker and Kozar.

Rudolph was cruising out front,. but there was a spirited battle for second between King Sr. and Shingledecker. They banged wheels going through turns three and four and then they got together coming down the front stretch. Shingledecker got out of shape and his car began to tumble toward the first turn. King Sr. was penalized for his role in the incident, moving Brachmann into second for the restart.

The two New Yorkers continued racing out front, while Rasey, Brad Rapp, and others fought for spots in the top five. Kozar rolled in turn two with 18 laps complete to bunch things up again. Nonetheless, Kozar was able to restart the race as his car was battered but not broken.

In the final laps of the race, Rudolph and Brachmann pulled away from the rest of the pack. Rasey and Rapp continued their struggle, but Garrett Krummert entered the picture. along with King Sr. and Rex King Jr. who pitted for two new tires while Kozar was being turned back onto his wheels.

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At the finish, it was Rudolph, Brachmann, Krummert, King Jr. and King Sr. Rapp faded to sixth.Regalski, Barr, Kyle Fink, amd Mike Turner rounded out the top ten. Rasey spun in between turns three and four on the final lap and he was scored eleventh based upon laps completed.

Regalski and Krummert won the qualifying rounds on Saturday. There was no B Main.

Rex King, Jr. had the pole for his first 358 Modified start. Two-time winner Greg Martin was on his flank. Rudolph and Tim Holden, another two-tine victor, were in row two. Brachmann and Brian Sadler were in row three, with Ryan Riffe and Shingledecker in row four. Ryan Susice and Brandon Michaud were in row five.

King Jr. led the opening lap, but Rudolph was stalking him. Martin hovered in third, with Brachmann, Holden, Riffe, and Susice following. Rudolph powered by King J. on lap two and was never headed.

King Jr. continued on in second through the halfway mark. However, Susice took the position away soon thereafter. Shingledecker and Kevin Hoffman cracked the top five as Martin began to slide back.

A pair of cautions on lap 17 set up an eight lap run to the checkers. Rudolph completed them without incident. Shingledecker came on strong to get the second spot. Suicice helpd on for third. King Jr. was fourth followed by Martin. J.R. McGinley, Jimmy Holden, Brian Sadler, Tom Holden, and Jeff Schaffer, Jr. were sixth through tenth.

Suicise, Riffe, and Rudolph scored the preliminaries on Saturday. There was no B Main.

Zack Morrow started on the pole for the RUSH non-wing Sprint Car feature and he would go wire to wire for the emotional victory. He dedicated the win to his father, who passed on about a week before the race. Shaun Smith moved from third into second early in the contest, but he was no match for the high-flying Morrow in this one. Jeremy Weaver chased him home. Steve Pedley and Gale Ruth, Jr. rounded out the top five.

Nolan Graves, Brian Hartzell, Rick Regalski, , Andy Feil, and Amelia Clay made up the second group of five finishers.

Morrow and Ruth were the heat winners in Saturday’s action. There was no B Main.

The Pro Stocks ran for 50 laps. Noah Brunell earned the pole Saturday based on his heat and dash wins. He led the first 19 laps, but he could not break free from Chris Schneider, who also was a heat winner. Schneider made the pass and went on to lead the remaining 31 laps.

Bobby Whitling gave chase for a significant portion of the second half of the race, but he surrendered the runner-up spot to Randy Wyant. Wyant closed in on Schneider, but never posed a threat for the win.

At the finish, it was Schneider, Wyant, Whitling, Jimmy Fosnaught, and Jackson Humanic who came from the last row on the starting grid. Joe Stajnrajh, Blaze Myers, Pat Fielding, Rod Laskey, and Josh Seippel completed the top ten.

Joining Brunell and Schneider in heat wins Saturday was Doug Iorio, II. There was no B Main.

Jeff Schaffer, Sr. was back behind the wheel of a Modified for the first time in a couple of years and he made the most of the opportunity leading the entire twenty laps for the Crate Modified win. His teammate, Garrett Krummert was second. Kyle Martell was third, followed by Kole Holden and D.J. Schrader. David Kalb, Jr., Todd Gabriel, Kevin Hoffman, Jessica Kriegisch, and Gage Priester completed the top ten.

Krummert won the only heat race held on Saturday. There was no B Main.

Pat Hanlon stormed from twenty-third to second in less than a handful of laps in the nightcap for the Mini Stocks. He inherited the lead when Dillon Speer could not get his mount to shift out of first gear after a critical restart. J.R. Shaner was second. Austin Fedder, Patrick Lane, and Justin Bailey were the next three finishers. Jesse Armstrong, Joseph DeWoody, Kelly Clark, Mike Barr, and Zack Swartz held down positions six through ten.

Dillon Speer and Bill Fuchs were heat winners Saturday. There was no B Main.

Based upon their performances all season long, Sodeman (410 Sprints), Fink (358 Modifieds) and Dillon Speer (Mini Stocks) were named as champions for the three core classes at Tri-City Raceway Park.

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Carl Bowser Takes Applefest Win At Tri-City Raceway Park; Sunday Lineups Set

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FRANKLIN, PA (Pittsburgh Racing Now) – Carl Bowser is back in Victory Lane following his win Saturday at “Applefest Race Weekend” at Tri-City Raceway Park.

The 25-lap race was a makeup feature that was postponed on August 23 and came one night after Bowser was taken out of the feature race at Lernerville.

Bowser became only the second driver to win more than once at Tri-City in 2020, joining Brandon Spithaler as a two-time winner. Spithaler finished in second place with Jack Sodeman, Jr. crossing the finish line third. Dan Shetler placed fourth and 2020 winner Brandon Matus finished fifth.

Sunday the Sprint Cars will race a 30-lap feature event paying $5,000 to the winner. Sodeman, Jr. enters the Sunday season finale with a six point lead over Spithaler in the quest to earn the title of Tri-City Champion.

The Big Block Modifieds set the starting lineup for their $4,000-to-win, 30-lap, feature on Sunday with a pair of preliminary Heat Races. Rick Regalski beat Rex King, Sr. to win the first heat. The second Heat Race was won by Garrett Krummert, who held off Erick Rudolph.

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A trio of heat races set the starting grid for Sunday’s 30-lap, $4,000-to-win Small Block Modified feature. Ryan Susice, Rudolph and Ryan Riffe captured the checkered flags.

The Pro Stocks set their field for Sunday’s 50-lap, $2,250-to-win race.  Heat race victories went to Chris Schneider, Doug Iorio II, and Noah Brunell. Brunell also won a special “Dash Race” for the division.

The RUSH Sprint Cars ran two heat races on Saturday to set the field for their 20-lap, $1,000-to-win feature on Sunday.  Zach Morrow and Gale Ruth, Jr. each took prelim wins.

Garrett Krummert was also victorious in the heat race for the Crate-Engined Modified division. The Mini Stock division Heat Races were won Dillon Speer and Bill Fuchs.

Fans coming to Sunday’s events are encouraged to bring all 2020 ticket stubs to the race as they will be used for Grand Prize drawings, which include two Jeep-replica go-karts are among the top prizes.  Winners must be present and have matching ticket stub numbers in hand to claim prizes.  Sunday’s event also includes a fireworks display after the races.  Gates open at 2 p.m. with racing to begin at 4 p.m.

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