Outside of the one repeat winner, fans were treated to great battles in each of the 4 IMCA divisions that raced on the night.
In the Bad Boyz Bail Bonds IMCA Hobby Stock Feature it looked as if Patrick Thyfault was going to run away with the win. Thyfault got out to an early battle at the front of the field with Jalen Wettengel and would soon take the upper hand at the front of the field. As the laps wore down it was evident that lapped traffic was going to play a role in the finish.
While Thyfault was out in the front Tyler Garst was working his way forward after starting 8th on the grid. Lap after lap, Garst ran smooth laps and it ate into Thyfault’s lead. Garst made up some time getting to Thyfault with the aid of lapped traffic. Once they both got passed the lapped car it was a great race.
Both drivers would go side by side, neither wanting to give an inch and it was great hard nosed racing between two competitors. Garst would get the lead heading into turn 3 on the last lap and he would dive down in lower on the last corner and he sprinted to the finish gaining his 1st victory of the year. Garst becomes the 5th different winner on the season in the Hobby Stock ranks to visit the Pit Pass Liquor Winner’s Circle.
Thyfault put up a great fight and had to settle for the runner-up spot, it was the best finish of the season, 3rd, for Jalen Wettengel, Dominic Thyfault finished 4th after starting 14th and Dalton Ronnebaum rounded out the top 5.
Another new winner drove to the Pit Pass Liquor Winner’s Circle in the Belleville Motor Sports IMCA Northern Sport Mod Feature.
Several drivers took their hand at the top spot in this race. Austin Charles would get an early lead in this one, but he would give way to Chad Shaw who came to the front of the field after starting 12th. Shaw was at the front of the pack when a yellow flag would bunch up the field and put another spin at the top spot.
Shaw jumped back out into the lead when the green flag flew, but this time Eddie Schwope III was right with him. The two would battle back and forth. Shaw would sail it in high going into turn 3 and looped it while battling with Schwope for the lead.
Schwope took the lead from this point on and was able to hang on for his 1st win after a succession of yellow flags fell on the feature. Schwope would get his 1st win of the season and he kept the victory in the family for the 2nd straight week as Eddie Schwope Jr. won the feature a week ago. Schwope also became the 7th different feature winner on the season in the Sport Mods.
It was an amazing battle all through the field. Eddie Schwope Jr. followed up his win with a runner-up finish, marching from 22nd to 3rd was Aaron Hilderman, 4th went to Curtis Dreasher and 5th was the points leader, Jeremy Pittsenbarger.
All the drivers that finished in the top 5 started no better than the 4th row of the A Main.
The Heinen Repair Service IMCA Stock cars continued the theme of new winners on Saturday night too. There were a lot of eyes on this class as the title sponsor of the class, Heinen Repair Service sponsored the race night and gave $50 extra bucks to the top 10 finishers of the A Main.
Eric Rempel made a strong move on the opening lap of the A Main that would set the tone for the entire race.
Brandon Conkwright and Mike Taylor got out front first, but it didn’t take long for Rempel to move to the front. At the front he was on cruise control until the old, late race, yellow came out forcing a green, white, checkered situation.
On the restart, what once was a one car runaway, it became a car shootout. In the end the battle came down to Rempel and last week’s feature winner, Marvin Griffith Jr.
The two would swap spots on the last lap but coming to the stripe it was Rempel that got the drop on Griffith and motored to his 1st win of the season. Rempel was the 7th different winner to make it to the winner’s circle in the Stock Car ranks.
Griffith would finish 2nd, 3rd went to Greg Deters, 4th was Mike Taylor, who won a dogfight with Gene Stigall who finished 5th on the night.
If there was anything that could ruin the theme of the night it was BSB Manufacturing IMCA Modified Feature.
Danny Holt had 3 wins heading into the night and 4 was in the realm of possibility.
Randy Wilson raced out to the early lead in this one, but the Holt Freight Train was on the move. Holt started 8th and was working his way to the front quickly. Wilson built up a nice lead early, but once Holt got by for 2nd he quickly ran down Wilson and the two fought for a couple of laps. Holt cleared Wilson and took off on his own at the front of the field.
At the front of the back there were several 3 and 4 wide battles that were on display.
Late in the race Jeff Jones put up the biggest challenge of the night for Holt. It also happened to be on the last few laps. On a restart Jones would pull the slide job on Holt on a couple of different occasions. Holt would roar back to the lead. Jones wasn’t done yet as he dove in front of Holt once again. This time the two drivers would stay side by side for the final couple of laps. Holt on the inside and Jones on the outside. Neither one wanting to back down to the other.
Holt would use every inch of real estate allowed and it would propel him to win #4 and his 3rd win in 4 weeks. It also ended the chances of having 4 new feature winners on the night.
Jones settled for 2nd place, Mat Stallbaumer had a strong 3rd place finish, Dave Conkwright rolled to a 4th place finish and Randy Wilson hung on for 5th place.
Next week, Saturday August 9, the racing action continues at Thunder Hill Speedway for Ladies Night at the Races. That’s right Ladies get in FREE next Saturday night. Bring a friend! For more information log on to www.racethunderhillspeedway.com.
Larry Lowrey, Jr