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Plus Collects The 2015 SpeedSTR Action Track Point Championship...
(left photo) Tim Buckwalter gave it all he had in the feature behind the iconic Tobias #17, but came up just short.
(right photo) Billy Pauch Jr. claimed the season ending win plus the track point title all in one night.
Photos courtesy of Lenny Slemmer Jr, and Action Track USA.
Kutztown, PA. 08-15-15: Champions were crowned before a capacity crowd on Sunday, August 16, as the JeffreyHogueRealtor.com Action Track USA lowered the curtain on its 2015 racing season at the Kutztown Fairgrounds.
Some fantastic racing took place before the point champions could be recognized, with Billy Pauch Jr. pulling off the biggest win of the night as he captured the 75-lap Dick Tobias Classic for the USAC All Pro SpeedSTRs. The victory was worth $5,000 to Pauch, who clinched his second consecutive point title by winning the Classic.
The Pioneer Pole Building Wingless 600cc Sprints, Powered by Engler Injection, also had a driver secure the championship by virtue of winning the final race of the season as Tim Buckwalter forged a narrow victory over the driver he was battling for the title, Brandon Azzalina.
Chris Kurtz registered his fourth triumph of the year in the NAPA Auto Parts All Star Slingshot main event, but it was Brett Bieber who emerged as the point champ.
The 75-lap Dick Tobias Classic was just that as the USAC All Pro SpeedSTR's fought tooth-and-nail for every position on each trip around the progressively banked oval.
Kevin Graver Jr. set the pace in the early laps, with Ryan Smith and Kenny Brightbill mixing it up for the runner-up spot. Smith finally cleared Brightbill's No. 19 and moved in on the race leader, challenging Graver in a side by side duel for several circuits. Andy Haus took third from Brightbill and ran there until Billy Pauch Jr. made his presence known, taking the position from Haus on lap 31.
A scheduled fuel stop with 40 laps complete allowed the teams to make whatever changes they wanted, as long as the adjustments were completed by the time the ten minute time limit expired. As the race went back to green, Smith had his No. 97x wound up on the outside, powering around Graver (who led the first 40 tours) to take command as lap 42 was scored.
Soon it was Pauch Jr.'s turn to swap the lead with Smith as the duo traded slide jobs on a few occasions before Pauch Jr. secured the top spot. Tim Buckwalter, who rolled off the starting grid in seventh, slipped past Smith for second on lap 49. Now it was time for another edition of the Billy and Timmy show, as Pauch Jr. and Buckwalter were set to battle for the win as they had on numerous occasions during the 2015 season.
Buckwalter threw a slider on Pauch in turns one and two on a restart with 15 to go, grabbing a temporary hold on the lead. Pauch returned the favor with 12 laps remaining, sliding Buckwalter for the top spot on another restart. From that point on, Pauch Jr. was in control, although he could not totally shake Buckwalter. The Frenchtown, NJ ace maintained a lead of about three to four car lengths, winning by almost a half-second over Buckwalter. Smith was third with Graver Jr. and Brad Brightbill rounding out the top five.
"My dad and Kenny Brightbill battled one another for many years," grinned Pauch Jr. in victory lane. "And I told Timmy that we're both young enough yet that we'll still be battling each other 20 years from now, just like my dad and Kenny." The win was Pauch Jr.'s third of the season but his first since June 10 in SpeedSTR competition.Tim Buckwalter Wins The "Pioneer Pole Building" Wingless 600 Sprint Feature,
Plus Takes Home The 2015 Action Track Point Title...
(left photo) Multi talented Hot Shoe Tim Buckwalter on his way to capturing the feature win.
(right photo) Surrounded by his team, Tim Buckwalter enjoys the win, and the point title that he earned in 2015 .
Photos courtesy of French Fry Nation and Action Track USA.
The highly competitive SpeedSTR feature was a tough act to follow, but the Pioneer Pole Building Wingless 600cc Sprints, Powered by Engler Injection, did their very best to keep the large crowd on the edge of their seats.
Brandon Azzalina carried a slim five point lead over Tim Buckwalter as they headed into the season finale, with Billy Pauch Jr. still having a mathematical chance at the title as well. And Hollywood could not have written a better, more appropriate script to carry out this intense battle for the championship.
Azzalina and Buckwalter started seventh and fifth, respectively, in the 25-lap main event. They quickly moved up to join the party at the front of the pack, with Azzalina passing Buckwalter in the early going.
The first 13 laps of the main went clean and green, with James Morris snatching the lead from Jordan Mohr on the third revolution. Billy Pauch Jr., looking for the SpeedSTR/Wingless 600 sweep, roared into third on the ninth circuit, passing Jay Hartman for that position.
When the yellow flag appeared at the halfway point, Morris was leading over Pauch Jr., Azzalina, Buckwalter, and Jay Hartman. As the race went back to green, however, the drivers at the front of the field went four-wide for the top spot. Buckwalter authored an incredible move to take the lead, darting down from the top of the turn two banking to slice his way between Morris and Pauch with Azzalina left behind in fourth.
With Buckwalter in front, it was time for a three-car, three-wide tussle for the runner-up slot between Azzalina, Morris, and Pauch Jr. Azzalina grabbed second but gave it back one lap later as Morris somehow threaded the needle in turn two, charging through an opening the size of a key hole between Azzalina and Pauch. Azzalina moved back into second with two to go, passing Morris then setting sail after the leader.
While the Saylorsburg wheel-twister closed the gap on Buckwalter with one lap left to run, Buckwalter was able to hold him off to win the race and the championship by 0.309-seconds. Morris finished third with Pauch Jr. a close fourth and Jay Hartman wound up fifth.
Douglassville's Buckwalter ended up winning the title by 20 points over Azzalina. It was Buckwalter's fourth Wingless 600cc victory of the campaign and he gave all the credit for his wins and the title to car owner Barry Greth. "He works his butt off during the week to have this car ready and to make it fast," noted Buckwalter. "And with my TSL shock package on it, we were able to have a great year here." Jason Swavely was the Pioneer Pole Building Hard Charger of the race, clawing his way from 24th starting position to a tenth place finish.
Chris Kurtz Closes Out Action Track USA Season Taking His 4th All-Star Slingshot Victory...
Brett Bieber Takes the 2015 Action Track All-Star Slingshot Point Championship...
(left photo) Brett Bieber secured the 2015 Point Title after his win in Wednesday's 100 lap feature, job well done.
(right photo) Chris Kurtz is all smiles after collecting Action Track feature win #4 in 2015.
Photos courtesy of Action Track USA.
Brett Bieber had the NAPA Auto Parts All Star Slingshot point title locked up by the time the Kutztown Fair ended on Saturday. He actually clinched the title on Wednesday night, taking away any pressure and enabling him to just "show up, race and have some fun," according to the newly crowned champion from Oley, PA.
He was actually cheering for brother Travis, who started on the pole and ran side by side with Matt Miller for the top spot for the first three revolutions. Travis Bieber eventually moved ahead and proceeded to lead until calamity struck on a restart with eight laps complete. The throttle linkage on Bieber's No. 114 broke and he slowed dramatically, handing the lead to Chris Kurtz.
Kurtz, who hails from Saylorsburg, drove to his fourth triumph of the season with Seth Spayd ending up in second (his best finish of the year). Dylan Swinehart, a two-time winner at Action Track USA this year, settled for third place money ahead of Dylan Hoch and Miller.
Action Track Sidebites...
There were 31 USAC
SpeedSTR's in attendance on Sunday, while the
wingless 600's pulled in a stellar field of 40.
The All Star Slingshot entries totaled 38 for a
grand total of 109 race cars among the three
Action Track USA co-promoters Doug Rose and Rich Tobias recognized and thanked their staff at intermission, introducing each one to the crowd after a group photo was taken. They also saluted the SpeedSTR drivers who qualified for the Dick Tobias Classic, handing out medals to each driver and introducing them one by one to the crowd. Rose and Tobias gave similar recognition to the All Star Slingshot drivers at the Kutztown Komet 100 last Tuesday and for the wingless 600cc drivers before their Touch of Green Landscaping Wingless 600cc Fair Nationals on Wednesday, August 12.
Club Wago held their Summer Bash at the track on Sunday afternoon and the goal of the event was to raise funds (through raffles of racing related items) for the family of Mike Bailey, who passed away in his race car after being stricken by medical issues at Grandview Speedway on July 28. The Summer Bash raised more than $1,000 for Bailey's family and the money was presented to them at intermission on Sunday night.
NAPA of Kutztown conducted a Most Popular Driver contest at the speedway this season. For a donation of $1.00, fans could vote for their favorite driver at Action Track USA. The donations went to the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund. When all the votes were cast, SpeedSTR competitor Kenny Brightbill received the highest number of tallies to become the 2015 Most Popular Driver at Action Track USA. Brightbill was presented with a Most Popular Driver plaque on Sunday evening as part of the intermission activities.
Mary Tobias, the widow of the late, great Dick "Toby" Tobias, was on hand and presented a special winner's ring to Billy Pauch Jr. after his victory in the Tobias Classic.
The SpeedSTRs will compete in several All Pro Tour events in the coming weeks, racing at tracks such as Thunder Mountain and Five Mile Point in NY, along with Pennsylvania's Penn Can, Linda's, and Grandview Speedway. They will also appear at New Egypt, NJ on October 31 before joining the wingless 600cc Sprints and the All Star and Junior Slingshots at Grandview's Fall Jamboree on Sunday, November 1.
The JeffreyHogueRealtor.com Action Track USA will begin its fourth season of mind blowing competition in May of 2016. The staff and management wishes to thank all the race teams, marketing partners, and spectators who made 2015 a very special season.
RACE VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS
USAC All Pro SpeedSTR Feature, Dick Tobias Classic, 75 laps: 1.Billy Pauch Jr., 2.Tim Buckwalter, 3.Ryan Smith, 4.Kevin Graver Jr., 5.Brad Brightbill, 6.Steven Nederostek, 7.Andy Haus, 8.Kenny Brightbill, 9.Billy Pauch Sr., 10.Matt Janisch, 11.Jeff Strunk, 12.John Bockhorn, 13.Skylar Sheriff, 14.Mike Bednar, 15.Kris Graver, 16.Jason Miller, 17.Tyler Dipple, 18.Damon Paul, 19.Doug Manmiller, 20.Andy Bachetti, 21.Gary Huber, 22.Earl Paules, 23.Frank Yankowski, 24.Joey Thompson, 25.Jay Hartman, 26.Rick Kirkendall, 27.Joe Vaccaro. DNS: Wayne Weaver, Nick Baer. DNQ: Kyle Lick, Mike Vermuelen.
Pioneer Pole Building Wingless 600cc Sprint Feature, 25 laps: 1.Tim Buckwalter, 2.Brandon Azzalina, 3.James Morris, 4.Billy Pauch Jr., 5.Jay Hartman, 6.Eddie Strada, 7.Tommy Kunsman Jr., 8.Robbie Hocker, 9.Danny Buccafusca, 10.Jason Swavely, 11.Jeff Hartman, 12.Will Butler, 13.Kyle Lick, 14.Mick D'Agostino, 15.Doug Snyder, 16.Jacob Severn, 17.Dan Schumaker, 18.Joey Jarowicz, 19.Jermain Godshall, 20.Jon Keller, 21.Jack Conover, 22.Joe Kay, 23.Colin White, 24.Nate Brinker, 25.Alex Bright, 26.Justin Schraden, 27.Jordan Mohr, 28.Jarid Kunkle.
DNQ: Dave Dimaio, Aaron Bowes, Tanner Gray, Dan Leaper, Louie Horvath, Cale Mutter, Hunter James, Carmen Leggio, Patrick Ely, Jeff Weaver, Rebecca LaMothe, Joe Plunkett.
NAPA Auto Parts All Star Slingshot Feature, 20 laps: 1.Chris Kurtz, 2.Seth Spayd, 3.Dylan Swinehart, 4.Dylan Hoch, 5.Matt Miller, 6.Austin Stufflet, 7.Erik Jones, 8.Kassidy Kreitz, 9.Tim Roeder, 10.Jeff Kemp, 11.Dave Carraghan, 12.Joe Nemeth, 13.Taylor Schoenly, 14.Anthony Raisner, 15.Alex Yankowski, 16.Austin Silfee, 17.Brett Bieber, 18.Dave Galloway, 19.Jake Bedell, 20.Jordan Knepp, 21.Louden Reimert, 22.Dave Burns, 23.Cody Kohler, 24.Travis Bieber, 25.William Mohring, 26.Nick Delcampo.
DNQ: Mike Toth, Steve Svanda, Dakota Kohler, Aidan Svanda, Lindsey Garl, Joe Toth, Lee Schantzenbach, Dave Morrell, Blaire Schoenly, John Gilroy, Joey Vaccaro, Scott Solt.
Mike Mahaney Gets 2nd SpeedSTR Victory of 2015 at Action Track USA...
(left photo) Andy Haus #76 from Hamburg Pa, throws his STR sideways during early heat racing action.
(right photo) Mike Mahaney is all smiles after picking up his 2nd STR Victory of the season Wednesday night.
Photos courtesy of French Fry Nation.
Kutztown, PA. 08-12-15: Spending close to four hours on the road - one way, mind you - does not bother Mike Mahaney in the least. "I don't mind the long ride because I just love racing here," he told the fans after winning his second USAC All Pro SpeedSTR feature of the season at the JeffreyHogueRealtor.com Action Track USA on Wednesday night.
"The competition is intense, Rich (Tobias) prepares a great track, and I really enjoy racing in front of these large crowds each week. I can't be here (for the season finale) on Sunday, unfortunately, but I'll definitely be back next year," said the dirt Modified standout from Kings Ferry, NY.
Mahaney captured an exciting 30-lap All Pro Tour main for the SpeedSTR's during the annual Kutztown Fair Week Nationals, but it was the second feature of the evening that had the capacity crowd standing and applauding during a caution period with four laps remaining.
Mahaney started on the outside of the front row for the 30-lap SpeedSTR test, and he bolted into the top spot on the opening lap. He and Matt Janisch, the TQ Midget ace from Nazareth, raced side by side for several laps, with Janisch sticking the nose of his No. 48 in front on a few occasions, only to have Mahaney battle back to reclaim the lead on the next revolution. Unfortunately for Janisch, he suffered a flat tire while the field circulated under caution with six circuits complete.
Tim Buckwalter then moved up to challenge Mahaney until Kyle Lick scooted past Buckwalter for the runner-up position on lap 13. Lick hounded Mahaney for the next few laps before he charged to the lead on a restart with 17 tours in the books. With Lick firmly in command, attention turned to 11th starter Mike Bednar, whose No. 46 came to life in the second half of the event, as Bednar rocketed down the backstretch, then threw a slide job on Buckwalter to grab third place with nine to go. A restart with seven trips remaining proved costly to Lick, as a broken shock prevented his No. L1 from taking off and the field took evasive action to get around his wounded car.
Lick's misfortune allowed Mahaney to inherit the lead once again, with Bednar now hot on his heels. But Mahaney's No. 33 was up to the task, holding on to record his second victory of the year at the Berks County oval. Bednar settled for a well deserved runner-up finish, with point leader Billy Pauch Jr. fending off his dad, Billy Sr. for third. Dale Planck rounded out the top five finishers.
Pat Bealer Wins
an Incredible 60 Lap Main Event for The Wingless
(left photo) Believe it or not, this was mild action compared to fast and furious that would follow in the Feature.
(right photo) Pat Bealer pulled off a Win in what fans called "one of the best races they ever saw" in the 600 Sprints.
Photos courtesy of French Fry Nation.
The Pioneer Pole Building Wingless 600cc Sprints Powered by Engler Injection took part in Wednesday's Touch of Green Landscaping 600 Nationals, and the 60-lap feature became an instant classic, with many in attendance quickly proclaiming that "it was one of the best races I ever saw, anywhere!"
Pat Bealer has gained a reputation as a top-notch wheel man in 270cc Micro-Sprint competition. On Wednesday night, however, Bealer proved he was just as skilled behind the wheel of a wingless 600cc Sprinter as he emerged from a scintillating, six-car battle to win an incredibly entertaining main event.
The Touch of Green Landscaping 600 Sprint National is difficult to describe because all of the position swapping, slide job executing, three and four-wide racing among the top six or, at times, eight cars had to be seen to believe and to be truly appreciated. It was an amazing display by the wingless 600cc competitors, as there was very little contact between the top six cars, even though their pilots were using every inch of the speedway and running inches apart.
Jason Swavely, in Dave Bodine's No. 99, and Pat Bealer wrestled for the lead in the early going, while Kyle Spence throttled his No. 44k right behind the two leaders. Spence moved to second on lap 16, and Alex Bright, in the other Hyper Racing house car, blasted into fourth position around the time the race was one-third complete. At the halfway mark, it was Swavely, Spence, Bright, and Bealer in the top four spots.
The second half was simply insane; it was open wheel, mud-slinging mayhem at its very best. The top eight cars, driven by Swavely, Spence, Bright, Bealer, Robbie Hocker, Sam Kravitsky, James Morris, and Daniel Schumaker ran under a virtual blanket with all of them trading positions on a consistent basis.
Spence made numerous attempts to overtake Swavely for the lead, throwing huge sliders on the leader in turns one and two, only to have Swavely launch off the banking and drive back under him to re-assume the top spot. Bealer, meanwhile, was right there with the top two, as he remained committed to the low groove at both ends of the speedway. He had to stay in the gas to defend his position from Bright, but at the same time be wary of Spence, who repeatedly threaded the needle between Swavely and Bealer on the front chute as he intiated yet another attempt to execute a slide job on the race leader.
Bealer eventually succeeded in passing Spence for second, and his perseverance on the bottom finally paid off as he accelerated off the inside of turn two ahead of Swavely to snatch the lead on lap 56. A yellow flag with four to go meant that Bealer was scored as the leader just in time...had the caution appeared before the lap was scored, then Swavely would have gone back in front.
During the caution period, the crowd showed their appreciation, applauding the effort by the drivers and wishing the race was even longer than its designated distance of 60-laps. As the green reappeared, Bealer took off and opened a comfortable advantage over Swavely, who how had to contend with Alex Bright for second place. On the final lap, a tangle in three and four messed up a good finish for Swavely and Morris, but it did not deter Pat Bealer from winning the biggest 600cc race of his career.
Bealer crossed the stripe in front of Alex Bright, and the last lap, final corner mishap between Swavely and Morris permitted Billy Pauch Jr. to claim third place money. Robbie Hocker wound up fourth and 26th starting Jermain Godshall completed the top five. A total of 53 drivers signed in for wingless 600cc competition on Wednesday.
Nets His 2nd Win of Campaign In All-Star
(left photo) Threading the needle to make the All-Star Slingshot action 3 wide during the feature event.
(right photo) Oley Hot Shoe Louden Reimert is making his families #58 Proud after picking up another Feature Win.
Photos courtesy of French Fry Nation.
In the NAPA Auto Parts All Star Slingshot feature, Louden Reimert of Oley, Pa., captured his second triumph of the season at Action Track USA.
Louden Reimert passed three-time winner Chris Kurtz to take the lead with seven circuits remaining, then went on to win his second NAPA Auto Parts All Star Slingshot feature of the season.
Reimert and Dylan Swinehart fought for the runner-up slot as Kurtz set the pace in the first half of the 20-lap event. Point leader and winner of the previous night's Kutztown Komet 100, Brett Bieber, moved to third just before the halfway point.
Reimert muscled past Kurtz for the lead on a restart with seven to go and went on to win by just over a half-second. Kurtz held on for second place cash, and Dylan Hoch (who started 11th) passed Bieber late in the race to finish third. Bieber and Austin Silfee ended up fourth and fifth, respectively.
RACE VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS
UPCOMING SEASON FINALE:
The season finale at the JeffreyHogueRealtor.com Action Track USA takes place this Sunday, August 16. The Dick Tobias Classic, highlighted by a 75-lap main event for the USAC All Pro SpeedSTRs that will pay $5,000 to the winner, lowers the curtain on the 2015 racing season at the progressively banked oval located on the Kutztown Fairgrounds.
Joining the SpeedSTRs on Sunday will be the Pioneer Pole Building Wingless 600cc Sprints Powered by Engler Injection and the NAPA Auto Parts All Star Slingshots. The point championships will be decided in all three of the weekly divisions, ratcheting up the intensity in three classes that are already earmarked by incredibly exciting wheel to wheel action. Warm-ups begin at 6:15 on Sunday evening, with qualifying heats immediately following the hot lap sessions.
Prior to Sunday's finale, Club Wago presents their Summer Bash behind the grandstands, beginning at 1 p.m. There will be games, a slip n' slide, prizes, giveaways, and a DJ will supply a musical background to the festivities. Racing related items, including a tail tank from Greg Hodnett's Sprint Car, will be raffled off with all proceeds going to the family of Mike Bailey, who recently succumbed to medical issues while seated in his race car, waiting to take the green flag for a feature at Grandview Speedway.
Come for the Club Wago party and stay for the spine-tingling excitement of the Dick Tobias Classic this Sunday at the JeffreyHogueRealtor.com Action Track USA...where the Superstars come to race!
USAC All Pro SpeedSTR Feature, 30 laps: 1.Mike Mahaney, 2.Mike Bednar, 3.Billy Pauch Jr., 4.Billy Pauch Sr., 5.Dale Planck, 6.Ryan Smith, 7.Jay Hartman, 8.Steven Nederostek, 9.John Bockhorn, 10.Brad Brightbill, 11.Frank Yankowski, 12.Kevin Graver Jr., 13.Skylar Sheriff, 14.Kris Graver, 15.Phil Meisner, 16.Andy Haus, 17.Earl Paules, 18.Tim Buckwalter, 19.Matt Janisch, 20.Kyle Lick, 21.Jared Umbenhauer, 22.Doug Manmiller, 23.Joe Vaccaro, 24.Bobby Trapper, 25.Jason Miller, 26.Kenny Brightbill.
Pioneer Pole Building Wingless 600cc Sprints Powered By Engler Injection - Touch of Green Landscaping 600 National, 60 laps: 1.Pat Bealer, 2.Alex Bright, 3.Billy Pauch Jr., 4.Robbie Hocker, 5.Jermain Godshall, 6.Sam Kravitsky, 7.Jacob Severn, 8.Jason Swavely, 9.Colin White, 10.Brandon Azzalina, 11.Kyle Lick, 12.Jarid Kunkle, 13.Tommy Kunsman Jr., 14.Wayne Scott, 15.James Morris, 16.Kyle Spence, 17.Eric Heydenreich, 18.Tim Buckwalter, 19.Dan Schumaker, 20.Mark Manieri, 21.Danny Buccafusca, 22.Doug Snyder, 23.Will Butler, 24.Kameron Morral, 25.Jay Hartman, 26.Joey Jarowicz.
NAPA Auto Parts All Star Slingshot Feature, 20 laps: 1.Louden Reimert, 2.Chris Kurtz, 3.Dylan Hoch, 4.Brett Bieber, 5.Austin Silfee, 6.Dylan Swinehart, 7.Erik Jones, 8.Austin Stufflet, 9.Jeff Kemp, 10.Anthony Raisner, 11.Dave Carraghan, 12.Seth Spayd, 13.Dakota Kohler, 14.Kassidy Kreitz, 15.Travis Bieber, 16.Steve Svanda, 17.Jordan Knepp, 18.Alex Yankowski, 19.Dave Galloway, 20.Cody Kohler, 21.Jim Dormus, 22.Madyson Pacheco, 23.Kyle Smith, 24.Lee Schantzenbach, 25.Ryan Suchon, 26.Joe Toth, 27.Matt Miller.
2015 SPEEDSTR & SLINGSHOT REGISTRATION FORM
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