HAMMETT, Pa. - The Ontario Topless Sprints made their first-ever appearance at Eriez Speedway on Sunday night.
Twelve of the 410 cubic-inch sprinters signed in with Brandon Spithaler on the pole and Tony Beaber outside. Spithaler led to turn one with Beaber leading the pack out of turn two. Using the high line, Spithaler was able to get alongside Beaber in turn three but would slide high coming out of four. On lap five, in turn one, Spithaler bicycled over the cushion and came to a halt in turn two. He was able to join the field for the restart. By lap six, Michael Fischesser was alongside Beaber and was leading a lap later.
At lap thirteen, Dalton Daniels and Craig Daniels got together on the front straight with Dalton riding the wall down the front straight. Both needed to be towed from the track. Several more cautions slowed the event before Fischesser took the checkers over Arnie Kent, Johnny Beaber, Brandon Spithaler, and Tony Beaber.
In regular racing action, Boom Briggs made his second Super Late Model trip to the Winner's Circle in as many weeks, as did Limited Late Model defending champion Steve Kania and Tim Fisher in Challengers.
Gary Eicher and Don McGuire got their first wins in several years at Eriez in the E-Mods and Street Stocks, respectively. A lapped car failed to yield to the leader on the final lap of the FASTRAK Late Model feature, allowing Max Blair to get by race-long leader Kyle Zimmerman for his third win of the season.
Last week's winner, Boom Briggs, and five-time champion Rich Gardner, brought the 18-car Jay's Auto Wrecking Super Late Model feature to the green flag. Briggs rocketed out to the lead looking for his third feature win of the season. Seven-time winner Robbie Blair came from third on the starting grid to the runner-up position by the end of the first lap and the two began opening a lead, catching the tail end of the field at the end of six laps just as Chuck Parker looped his mount in turn two.
At green, Andy Boozel came by Gardner for third while Blair and Briggs moved away from the rest of the field. Nine laps into the race defending champion Mike Knight was in fourth, just as John Lobb spun in turn two. At the halfway point Briggs was leading Blair by a car length with Knight now third, six lengths back. Parker again spun, this time right in front of the leaders and just as Damon Haught turned his car around in turn four.
At the restart with 10 to go, Briggs again assumed command with Blair and Knight right behind. Blair and Knight tried high and low to get by Briggs but to no avail as the Bear Lake Banzai motored to his third win of the season and second in a row. Blair wound up second with Knight third, Boozel fourth and Chub Frank fifth.
Former champion Kyle Zimmerman started from the pole of the Bonnell Collision Center FASTRAK Late Model feature with Mike Knight outside. In turn one Mike Mitchell and Colton Flinner both spun, forcing a complete restart. At green, Zimmerman led with Scott Gurdak coming to second and Max Blair to third at lap three. Six laps were complete when the second caution appeared, this time due to a spin by Skip Jackson.
After green, Blair came around Gurdak on the outside and began chasing Zimmerman. Zimmerman extended his lead over the next several laps, but came into lapped traffic with five laps to go. With two laps remaining the lapped car of Kevin Hill slowed Zimmerman's progress to the extent that Blair caught him and got by on the final lap, getting the win. Zimmerman held on for second with Gurdak third, Dennis Lunger fourth and Bobby Rohrer just nosing out Knight for the fifth spot.
Pole-sitter Bud Watson took the immediate lead in the Plyler Overhead Door E-Mod feature with third-place starter Gary Eicher quickly coming to second. Three laps in and outside front-row starter Mike Kinney was back in second. Bruce Powell looped his mount with four laps complete as Kinney was just pulling even with Watson.
For the restart, it was Watson, Kinney, Eicher and six-time winner and point-leader Rich Michael fourth. Gary Eicher drove around Watson at lap six for the lead with Michael, Watson, and Kinney having a three-way tussle for the runner-up spot.
At halfway, Kinney had established himself as the second-place car but Eicher had a formidable lead. Michael was third with Watson back to fourth at this point. With five laps remaining Eicher had a half-straight lead over Michael, who had just got by Kinney. Steve Sornberger spun his car with one lap to go, erasing Eicher's lead and putting Michael right on the leader's tail for the one lap dash for the win. Eicher was able to maintain his lead to get his first win at Eriez in several years.
Michael wound up second with Kinney third. Defending champion Joel Watson got by Bud Watson for the fourth spot at the checkers.
Defending champion Steve Kania started from the pole position of the Conway & O'Malley Limited Late Model feature, looking to repeat his win of last week.
Bob Scloss, in his first 2013 appearance, spun at lap three, slowing the event. Kania again led after green with Dustin Eckman again second. Third-running Chris McGuire spun into the infield on lap eight, but got the car back onto the track in fifth rather than waiting for the caution, which would have had him restarting from the rear.
At eleven laps in, Chris Ottaway took over second from Eckman but Kania had a half straight lead and was not to be denied his fifth win of the season. On the final lap, third-running Eckman slowed to a halt in turn two. Kania was the winner with Ottaway second, points leader Ryan Scott third, McGuire fourth, and Tyler Green fifth.
The Eric Walter Tree & Stump Removal Street Stocks were led first by pole-sitter Jimmy Kennerknecht until third-place starter Don McGuire got by at the end of lap four. In turn three at lap seven Chris Withers and Brandon Groters got together and spun, collecting defending champion Pat McGuire in the resulting melee.
After green, McGuire again shot out to the lead with Kennerknecht right behind. With four laps remaining Ron Boardman spun his mount in turn four, resulting in another yellow period. McGuire, a former Sportsman champion, then drove on to his first win in several years over Kennerknecht, Kenny Lamp, Paul Schreckengost and Mark Thompson.
The nightcap for the Kandy's Gentleman's Club Challenger feature had Matt Marcy and Tom Cupp on the front row with Cupp leading Marcy by a nose at the end of one lap. At the end of two Steve Morse was second. Jason Brightman came to third with four complete. Brightman got around both for the lead at the end of seven. A lap later eleventh-starting Joe Beach came to the lead but Holden Heinemann stopped on the track at the pit entrance, bringing yellow over the race with only two laps to go.
The final restart had Brightman inside and Beach outside. Beach, the second-place points car, immediately seized the lead but last week's winner, Tim Fisher, came by for the lead on the final lap and went on to his second win in as many weeks.
Ontario Topless Sprints
Heat 1: Tony Beaber, Brandon Spithaler, Gale Ruth, 2, Dalton Daniels, Craig Daniels, Mike Flynn.
Heat 2: Michael Fischesser, Arnie Kent, Johnny Beaber, Adam Anderson, Paul Kish, Aaron Fry.
Feature: Michael Fischesser, Arnie Kent, Johnny Beaber, Brandon Spithaler, Tony Beaber, Gale Ruth, Adam Anderson, Aaron Fry, 2, Mike Flynn, Craig Daniels, Dalton Daniels, Paul Kish.
Jay's Auto Wrecking Super Late Models
Heat 1: Chub Frank, Mike Knight, Scott Gurdak, Greg Oakes, Doug Eck, Damon Haught.
Heat 2: Boom Briggs, Rich Gardner, Bob Dorman, Chevy Scott, John Lobb, Chuck Parker.
Heat 3: Rob Blair, Andy Boozel, Chris Hackett, Scott Johnson, Dan Maxim, Dustin Fox.
Burger King of the Hill: Boom Briggs, Doug Eck.
Feature: Boom Briggs, Rob Blair, Mike Knight, Andy Boozel, Chub Frank, Chris Hackett, Scott Johnson, Rich Gardner, Scott Gurdak, Greg Oakes, Doug Eck, John Lobb, Bob Dorman, Chevy Scott, Dan Maxim, Dustin Fox, Chuck Parker, Damon Haupt.
Bonnell Collision FASTRAK Crate Late Models
Heat 1: Chad Wright, Bobby Rohrer, Bruce Hordusky, Scott Gurdak, Matt Latta, Khole Wanzer, Kevin Hill.
Heat 2: Mike Mitchell, Colton Flinner, Zach Carley, Skip Jackson, Tony Mariano, Al Brewer.
Heat 3: Dennis Lunger, Max Blair, Kyle Zimmerman, Mike Knight, Jamie Brown, Jake Finnerty.
Feature: Max Blair, Kyle Zimmerman, Scott Gurdak, Dennis Lunger, Bobby Rohrer, Mike Knight, Bruce Hordusky, Matt Latta, Mike Mitchell, Khole Wanzer, Tony Mariano, Kevin Hill, Al Brewer, Skip Jackson, Zack Carley, Jamie Brown, Jake Finnerty, Colton Flinner.
Plyler Overhead Door E-Mods
Heat 1: Rich Michael, Bud Watson, Brian Fardink, Butch Southwell, Joel Watson, Darren Tarabori, Rich McNeal, Cubby Haupt, John Boyd.
Heat 2: Gary Eicher, Mike Smith, Mike Kinney, Shane Crotty, Bruce Powell, Steve Simon, Steve Sornberger, John Boardman.
Feature: Gary Eicher, Rich Michael, Mike Kinney, Joel Watson, Bud Watson, John Boyd, Steve Simon, Butch Southwell, Darren Tarabori, Bruce Powell, Rich McNeal, Steve Sornberger, Cubby Haupt, Mike Smith, John Boardman, Brian Fardink.
Conway and O'Malley Limited Late Models
Heat 1: Dustin Eckman, Steve Kania, Chris Ottaway, Dan Maxim, Mike Lozowski, Wade Watson.
Heat 2: Ryan Scott, Chris McGuire, Jake Finnerty, Tyler Green, John Cline Sr, Bob Scloss (DNS).
Feature: Steve Kania, Chris Ottaway, Ryan Scott, Chris McGuire, Tyler Green, Dan Maxim, Mike Lozowski, John Cline Sr, Jake Finnerty, Dustin Eckman, Bob Scloss, Wade Watson.
Eric Walter's Tree & Stump Removal Street Stocks
Heat 1: Don McGuire, Pat McGuire, Mark Thompson, Paul Schreckengost, Matt Tuzynski, Ron Johnson.
Heat 2: Jimmy Kennerknecht, Kenny Lamp, John Phelps, Pat Fielding, Eric Reinwald, Carl Marcy.
Heat 3: Chris Withers, Brandon Groters, Eric Ester, Joe Rohrer, Shawn Fawcett, Ron Boardman.
Feature: Don McGuire, Jimmy Kennerknecht, Kenny Lamp, Paul Schreckengost, Mark Thompson, John Phelps, Joe Rohrer, Pat Mcaguire, Shawn Fawcett, Chris Withers, Eric Ester, Pat Fielding, Eric Reinwald, Carl Marcy. Brandon Groters, Ron Boardman, Ron Johnson, Matt Tuzynski.
Kandy's Gentlemen' Challengers
Heat 1: Steve Morse, Steve Enlow, Wes Stull, Mike Pohl, Kasey Hammond, Joe Beach, Jessee Phelps, David Scriven.
Heat 2: Matt Marcy, Jason Brightman, Tom Cupp, Holden Heinemann, Tim Fisher, Gary Olson, Drew Panko, Kelsey Parker.
Feature: Tim Fisher, Jason Brightman, Joe Beach, Tom Cupp, Kasey Hammond, Wes Stull, Matt Marcy, Mike Pohl, Gary Olson, Drew Panko. Holden Heinemann, Jessee Phelps, Kelsey Parker, Steve Morse, David Scriven, Steve Enlow (DNS).