Lewis & Brandel Split 600 Victories; Maurer Steals the Show in 270's at Memorial Day Open
Monday, 28 May 2012 18:07

Newmanstown, Pa. - May 26 - Shane Lewis recorded his second win of the season, as did Jesse Maurer, while Shaun Brandel drove to an exciting wingless victory in Saturday night's Memorial Day Open at Lanco's Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway.

Lewis captured the winged feature for the 600cc Micro-Sprints, while Brandel made a late race pass to notch the wingless 600cc triumph. Maurer raced to the 270cc Two-Stroke victory, with Richie Hartman (125cc), Kory Merkey (Sportsman), and Craig DeSantis (270cc Four-Stroke) also visiting the winner's circle.

The annual Memorial Day Open Show was presented by Bud's Spring Service, Dallas Spring, and Eagle Suspensions. The wingless event for the 600cc Micros was named the Kerry Gilbert Memorial, honoring the memory of the former Sportsman and 600cc racer and Vice President of the Lanco club.

The 30-lap, 600cc main events served as bookends for the six-feature program, with the winged race up first on the night's agenda.

Lewis, the Honeybrook, Pa. hotshoe, started fourth as the 600cc winged warriors took the green flag. He moved into second on the fourth trip around the banked oval, then ran down and stalked leader Jimmy Brookens over the next several revolutions.

On the 12th circuit, Lewis caught Brookens as the leader dealt with lapped traffic, slipping under Brookens' No. 11 as they accelerated off turn two and onto the backstretch. Lewis cleared Brookens' machine at the end of the back chute, grabbing a lead that he would not give up. The Honeybrook Hustler charged to his second Clyde Martin triumph of the season, with Brookens registering a career best Lanco finish of second.

Jerry Schott wound up third, with Chris Gerhart finishing fourth. Mike Rutherford, who started 14th, took the checkered in fifth.

Kameron Morral, Gerhart, Schott, and Lewis captured heat races for the 36-car field. Twin consolation races went to Jered Hook and Mike Dicely.

An incredible field of 39 signed in for wingless 600cc competition, but the 30-lapper that served as the event's nightcap boiled down to a pair of drivers who put on quite a show for the holiday weekend crowd.

Shaun Brandel patiently staged a persistent attack on Mike Rutherford, first in a duel for the runner-up position behind leader Tony Dimattia. When Dimattia suddenly slowed with mechanical issues with twelve to go, Rutherford inherited the top spot and Brandel's assault became a battle for the win.

Pottstown's Brandel kept shoving the nose of his No. 25 under Rutherford at both ends of the race track, with Rutherford committed to the high groove. Finally, headed for the two-to-go signal, Brandel's efforts paid off, as he rocketed off the bottom of turn four and past the No. 7h of Rutherford.

Brandel crossed the stripe with a margin of 0.585 seconds over Rutherford. Andy Martin, the two-time ARDC Midget Champion and former Micro-Sprint ace, returned to his old stomping grounds on Saturday and finished third after starting dead last (24th). Brett Michalski, who took the green in 22nd, ended up fourth while 19th starting Phil Durham finished fifth - a nice rebound after flipping in his wingless heat race.

Chris Gerhart, Brandel, Tim Buckwalter, and Rick Perone won the wingless heats while Chris Tracy and Jeff Stelter notched the consolation victories.

Opening night winner Jesse Maurer, the Mount Joy Outlaw, drew the pole position for the 270cc Two-Stroke main event. And Maurer made the most of his good fortune, racing to a comfortable victory while the fight for runner-up money went right down to the wire.

As Maurer cruised in front, Richie Hartman darted from ninth on the starting grid to pass Justin Harrington for second on a lap two restart.

Mike Rutherford sliced his way from eleventh to fourth in the first two tours, then wrestled third away from Harrington on the fifth circuit.

From that point on, the race was for second spot as Rutherford hounded Hartman with both drivers watching Maurer pull further and further away from them.

Maurer breezed to the triumph by more than a second over Rutherford, who managed to wrangle the runner-up spot from Hartman with two to go.

Brian Sholley (started 12th) was an impressive fourth and Harrington finished fifth.

With 33 of the 270's entering the Memorial Day Open, heat races were won by Maurer, Rutherford, and Kyle Newkirk. Billy Murphy took the consolation victory.

Richie Hartman won his third consecutive main event in the 125cc Class, bolting into the lead from his outside front row starting position over polesitter Evan Krautwald.

Bradley Brown motored into second as Hartman put some distance between himself and the rest of the field. An entertaining tussle developed for third between Shane Braxton (who started seventh), Krautwald, and eleventh starting Phil Durham, a two-time winner of the Memorial Day Open for the 125cc racers.

Just past the halfway point, the trio went three-wide for the third position, with Durham coming out ahead to claim the spot. His run to the front was halted, however, as something broke in the steering and Durham slapped the guardrail in three and four with 13 laps remaining.

Hartman, from Temple, Pa., went on to win handily over Brown, with Jesse Maurer making a late charge to finish third. Braxton and Felisha Kirlin rounded out the top five.

Hartman, Kirlin, and Durham were victorious in heat races for the 23-car field of 125cc Micros.

Since Ken Miller was attending his son's Quarter-Midget States Race, Kory Merkey was asked to fill the seat of the Miller Racing No. 7P in the Sportsman Class on Saturday. And Merkey thanked the Miller family by winning the 30-lapper for the 250cc Air-cooled Micro-Sprints.

Jason Swavely, Merkey's teammate for the evening, grabbed the early lead, passing Bobby Shanaman and blasting to a huge advantage during the first ten trips around the oval.

Swavely, the defending Sportsman point champion, looked to be a shoe-in for his third triumph of the year, but his No. 7c locked up on the backstretch with twelve laps in the books, ending his bid for the win.

Merkey inherited the top spot at that point, gassing his car to a big lead, then held off another teammate, Bret Habecker, over the final laps as Habecker caught up to the leader in lapped traffic.

Merkey, from Manheim, won by six-tenths of a second over Habecker, with Shanaman recording a well deserved third place finish. Wesley Fasnacht and Curtis R. Miller finished fourth and fifth, respectively.

With 16 of the Sportsman cars in the pit area, Matt Abers and Swavely won heat races.

Veteran Craig DeSantis grew tired of finishing second and third this season, and he finally broke into the winner's circle on Saturday, winning the 270cc Four-Stroke feature.

DeSantis chased early leader Ryan Shupp, then pulled alongside the former Four-Stroke point champion, and the duo raced side-by-side for the lead from laps eight through eleven before DeSantis edged in front.

The Lititz driver then steadily pulled away from his pursuers as seventh-starting Ryan Morris challenged Shupp for the runner-up position. Morris used the inside line to move past Shupp on lap 18, but DeSantis was long gone by that time.

Although Morris did close the gap on DeSantis during the final laps, he could not draw close enough to offer a serious challenge to the winner.

Trailing DeSantis and Morris at the finish were Shupp, Donna Geib, and Eddie Nocera.

Just eleven of the Four-Strokes entered the event, with DeSantis and Geib winning the two heat races.

The Clyde Martin Memorial Speedway will be dark this Saturday, June 2nd, as the club takes a scheduled night off. The speedway lights will shine once again on Saturday, June 9, with gates opening at 3:30 p.m. Warm-up begin at 5:00, and the first heat race goes green at 6 p.m.

General Admission for adults is just $8.00, with discounts for Senior Citizens and Students. Youth between the ages of six and twelve are admitted for $2.00, with children under the age of six admitted at no charge. Parking is always free at the Clyde.

Coming up at the end of the month is Micromania for the 600's and the Clash at the Clyde for the 270cc Two-Strokes. June 30 and July 1st will see the best of the best in 600cc competition, as Micromania expands to a two-day program and kicks off the sixth annual PA 600 Speedweek tour.

Each night will be highlighted by complete programs of qualifying and main events for both the 600's and 270's, with the higher paying Micromania A-Main and Clash at the Clyde taking place on Sunday, July 1.

For more information on Micromania and the Clash at the Clyde, log on to www.lancomicrosprint.com.


Winged 600cc Micro-Sprint Feature, 30 laps: 1.Shane Lewis, 2.Jimmy Brookens, 3.Jerry Schott, 4.Chris Gerhart, 5.Mike Rutherford, 6.Tim Buckwalter, 7.Tom Kohler, 8.Mike Dicely, 9.Mark Yoder, 10.Kameron Morral, 11.Jeff Stelter, 12.Brittany Brown, 13.Heath Hehnly, 14.James Morris, 15.Shaun Brandel, 16.Jared Esh, 17.Jered Hook, 18.Danny Wykes, 19.Rick Perone, 20.Bruce Ginther Jr., 21.Travis Esh, 22.Bobby Butler, 23.Tyler Esh, 24. Greg Stevens.


Wingless 600cc Micro-Sprint Feature (Kerry Gilbert Memorial), 30 laps: 1.Shaun Brandel, 2.Mike Rutherford, 3.Andy Martin, 4.Brett Michalski, 5.Phil Durham, 6.Peter Michael, 7.Billy Ney, 8.Brittany Brown, 9.Tony Dimattia, 10.Jessica Mohler, 11.Chris Gerhart, 12.Rick Perone, 13.Jered Hook, 14.Shane Braxton; 15.Shelby Harper, 16.Jeff Stelter, 17.Bruce Ginther Jr., 18.Christopher Tracy, 19.Danny Wykes, 20.Tim Buckwalter, 21.Mike Dicely, 22.Greg Stevens, 23.Mike Freed, 24.Shane Lewis.


Winged 270cc Two-Stroke Feature, 30 laps: 1.Jesse Maurer, 2.Mike Rutherford, 3.Richie Hartman, 4.Brian Sholley, 5.Justin Harrington, 6.Ryan Morris, 7.Luke Fogg, 8.Billy Logeman, 9.Heath Hehnly, 10.Tyler Reinhardt, 11.Lee Reinhardt, 12.Rebecca Lamothe, 13.Billy Murphy, 14.Phil Durham, 15.Scott Reninger, 16.Brad Kemp, 17.Steve Drevicki, 18.Randy Oswald, 19.Joshua Stump, 20.Kyle Newkirk, 21.Christi Sweigart, 22.Kyle Spence, 23.Jason Swavely, 24.Nick Walton.


125cc Micro-Sprint Feature, 30 laps: 1.Richie Hartman, 2.Bradley Brown, 3.Jesse Maurer, 4.Shane Braxton, 5.Felisha Kirlin, 6.Evan Krautwald, 7.Kyle Hehnly, 8.Jason Rhoads, 9.Derek Ecenrode, 10.Brianna Gerhart, 11.Dylan Adams, 12.Jake Smith, 13.Zack Hollinger, 14.Walt Wampole, 15.Daniel Braun, 16.Phil Durham, 19.Jordan Espenshade, 20.Darren Miller, 21.James Wampole, 22.Kory Merkey, 23. Chris Elville.


Sportsman Feature, 30-laps: 1.Kory Merkey, 2.Bret Habecker, 3.Robert Shanaman, 4.Wesley Fasnacht, 5.Curtis R. Miller, 6.Mark Ludwig, 7.Dave Kemp, 8.Chris Heagy, 9.Corey Schmuck, 10.Dennis Ziegler, 11.Matt Abers, 12.Jason Swavely, 13.Sheena Logeman, 14.Dean Spangler Jr., 15.Dave Schroeder, 16.Kerry Lengle.


270cc Four-Stroke Feature, 30 laps: 1.Craig DeSantis, 2.Ryan Morris, 3.Ryan Shupp, 5.Donna Geib, 6.Bret Habecker, 7.Kimberly Enck, 8. Steve Smith Sr., 9.Lewis Kepple, 10.Ronald Good, 11.Kory Shissler.



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