TIM BUCKWALTER PROFITED FROM A GREAT CHASSIS SET UP AND
WHAT HE QUOTED AS "A REALLY GOOD TRACK FOR THE FEATURE"
ON HIS WAY TO PICKING OFF HIS 2ND ACTION TRACK USA
FEATURE VICTORY OF THE EARLY 2017 RACING SEASON...
Buckwalter after climbing from his "Bagel Rack" sponsored #7 SpeedSTR took the
checkered flag and stood atop his safety cage to say "I'm on top of the World".
Ty's Racing Photos.
Story by Barry Angstadt
Kutztown, PA - Wednesday night was First Responder Night presented by Glick Fire Equipment, and the competition was certainly hot and heavy at the JeffreyHogueRealtor.com Action Track USA on the Kutztown Fairgrounds. When the sparks died down and the smoke cleared, Tim Buckwalter claimed his second victory of the young season in the USAC All Pro SpeedSTR division.
Reading's Matt Miller drove his No. 16m to the All Star Slingshot triumph, his first at Action Track USA since 2014. Joining Miller as a Slingshot winner on Wednesday was Reese Nowatarski of Reading. Nowatarski captured the Junior Slingshot victory.
The Glick Fire Equipment 30-lap main event for the USAC All Pro SpeedSTRs was a highly competitive affair that featured three different leaders and a late race battle for second that had the large crowd roaring with delight.
Mike Bednar, driving Brandon Auman's No. 2, jumped to the early lead over Jason Rochelle. Fifth-starting James Morris zipped past Rochelle and into the runner-up spot by lap two, and one circuit later Tim Buckwalter, who lined up tenth on the starting grid, charged to the third position.
On the fourth trip around the clay, Morris got into the back of Bednar's mount, and the Whitehall, Pa. driver got just loose enough to allow Morris to shoot down off the turn four banking and grab the lead. Bednar got a run on Morris at the opposite end of the race track, but bumped Morris' No. 13 and lost his momentum as well as the runner-up slot, with Buckwalter slipping past him in turn two.
On a lap ten restart, Buckwalter shot past Morris to gain control, and from that point on, the Pottstown, Pa. wheel-twister maintained a firm grip on the top spot. When 11th-starter and current point leader Billy Pauch Jr. weaved his way into third, however, is when the real fun began as he began his assault on Morris.
The last 11 tours of the race were highlighted by the fantastic slide-fest between Pauch Jr. and Morris. Pauch threw slider after slider on Morris, and James deftly crossed him over and dashed back past the Heffner Motorsports No. 27 as they exited the corners and raced down the straightaways. On a few occasions, Morris rolled the top to perfection and Pauch wasn't able to execute a slide job but sliders ruled on most laps - they just were not successful as Morris defended his position each time.
Buckwalter sped across the finish line after 30 laps to record his second win of the season and his seventh Action Track USA SpeedSTR triumph. That moves him within three of the career win leaders (in SpeedSTR competition) at the Berks County oval, as father and son Pauch (Billy Sr. and Billy Jr.) are tied at the top with ten career victories.
Morris nipped Pauch Jr. for a hard earned second place payday, with steady Matt Westfall from Ohio finishing fourth and Steve Drevicki rounding out the top five.
"Paul (Lotier) and the whole crew just do a tremendous job preparing this car, and the track was really good for the feature," said Buckwalter in Weaknecht Archery Victory Lane. "And you know Amanda, my girlfriend, is pregnant so we really need the money that we get for winning," stated a grinning Buckwalter.
Action Track Sidebites:
Quote of the Night: "I didn't even know you could throw a slide job in a SpeedSTR...but Billy (Pauch Jr.) sure proved that you can. That was a lot of fun..." deadpanned James Morris after his torrid duel with Pauch in the SpeedSTR feature.
First Responder Night (where First Responders showing a valid I.D. were admitted free) presented by Glick Fire Equipment produced solid car counts of 27 SpeedSTRs; 42 Wingless 600 Sprints; 28 of the All Star Slingshots; and 10 Junior Slingshots. That's a total of 107 race cars in competition on Wednesday!
Tim Buckwalter and Pauch Jr. were the quickest SpeedSTRs in that group's time dashes, locking themselves into the main event as a result. Winning SpeedSTR heat races were Doug Manmiller, Jason Rochelle, and Morris. The B-Main was captured by Matt Janisch.VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS
Timed Dashes were utilized for All Star Slingshot qualifying on Wednesday, and Alex Yankowski set quick time as the fastest 18 drivers locked into the 20-lap feature. Marc Daniels and Brett Bieber were second and third on the speed chart in the Timed Dashes. Kyle Smith won the last-chance B-Main.
Reese Nowatarski won the lone heat race for the Junior Slingshots.
Glick Fire Equipment had a huge ladder truck on display behind the grandstands. Glick Fire Equipment, now in its 30th year, is the state's leader in sales and service of fire trucks, ambulances, and other vehicles used by First Responders. See their full line of emergency response equipment at www.glickfire.com.
This Wednesday, June 7, will be the annual Flyin' Farmer 40 for the SpeedSTRs, a 40-lap main event paying $3,000 to the winner! It's Action Track USA's tribute to the late, great Tommy Hinnershitz of nearby Oley, PA, who was known throughout his stellar Sprint Car and Midget career as "the Flying Farmer".
The Hyper Racing Wingless 600 Sprints will join the USAC All Pro SpeedSTRs and the All Star Slingshots on this week's card. It will be FFA Night at the speedway, and the Old Time Plowboys will have their antique tractors on display and on the race track for an exhibition. Fans are invited to wear their best farmer apparel; the fans looking most like they are ready to milk the cows or bale some hay will be invited to victory lane for photos with the winner of the Flyin' Farmer 40.
USAC All-Pro SpeedSTRs (30 Laps) – 1. Tim Buckwalter 2. James Morris 3. Billy Pauch Jr. 4. Matt Westfall 5. Steve Drevicki 6. Mike Bednar 7. Steve Nederostek 8. Jeff Hartman 9. Briggs Danner 10. Earl Paules 11. Matt Janisch 12. Joe Mooney 13. John Bockhorn 14. Ray Nemeth 15. Jason Rochelle 16. Ed Kenderdine 17. Tom Mayberry 18. Doug Manmiller 19. Steve Buckwalter 20. Jason Miller 21. Louden Reimert 22. Joe Vaccaro 23. TJ Mayberry 24. Mike Mahaney. DNS: Kenny Brightbill, Brad Brightbill, Tim Iulg.