Fries wins again at Path Valley
Five divisions and six features were on tap for the fans of the Friday night stock car racing action at Path Valley Speedway. The Late Models were the "heavy hitters" for the night and Andy Fries turned out to be the star of the night.
The Strictly Stock make-up feature started off the night's events, with five of the six eligible drivers in attendance. Heath Leonard grabbed the lead on lap one with Steven Jacobs in second. Eric Boozel passed Jacobs for second on lap six and four laps later used the inside line to pass Leonard for the lead. Boozel pulled away the final ten laps to secure the win. Casey Steinhoff took second from Leonard with four laps to go. At the finish, third thru fifth went to Leonard, Jacobs, and Glen Wilson.
Brad McGinnis started first in the Super Stock feature and led every lap to claim the victory. McGinnis moved out to a large lead and left the battle for second. Curt Dunn was running second with Bill Powell on his back bumper and Alex Boozel caught the pair six laps in. Dunn was in the middle groove with Powell attacking on the high side. Boozel found speed in the low groove, getting past Powell on lap seven and passed Dunn for second a lap later. McGinnis was a full straightaway ahead by then and Boozel could not make up much ground, settling for second. Powell finally found a way past Dunn on lap thirteen and finished third. Dunn held on to fourth with Troy Eckenrode fifth. Dunn and McGinnis were the heat race winners.
Shaine Sixeas is now three-for-three in 2014, winning the Mini Stock feature in convincing fashion. Sixeas started fifth out of seven starters, moved to third on lap one, second on lap three and drove to the inside of Jeremy Ott in turn three of lap five for the winning pass. Sixeas then pulled away lap after lap, holding a lead of over a full straightaway when the checkered flag dropped. Ott came home second, followed by Gary Dehart, Josh Group, and Frankie Gordon. Group came up light on the scales, moving Gordon to fourth and Tyler Horst to fifth. Sixeas also won the heat race.
In the Late Model feature Eric Irvin started second and beat pole-sitter Tim Snare to turn one to lead the way. Irvin pulled away by a few car lengths leaving Snare behind to contend with Wes Bonebrake, Andy Fries, and George Dixon. Most of the field was running the low or middle groove, so Fries decided to try his luck up top and he was glad he did. The first few laps were not pretty as Fries admitted later that he was trying too hard and over-driving, losing fourth to Dixon in the process. Then Fries settled down, got into a rhythm, and started moving forward, regaining fourth from Dixon on lap seven. Bonebrake made his way past Snare to take second on lap nine and Fries worked around Snare to take third on lap thirteen, just before the third of four cautions. On the restart Fries blasted around Bonebrake and started the hunt for the lead. The final caution bunched the field back together with six laps remaining. Fries went back to work on top and drove around Irvin to take the lead on lap twenty-three. Fries then drove away to win, giving him two in a row. Irvin finished second, holding off a late charging Dave Dunkle. Brad Kling beat Dixon by a foot to finish fourth. The heat race wins went to Fries and Dunkle.
Kyle Martin started second in the 4-Cylinder Thunder Car feature and beat pole-sitter Justin Williamson to turn one and the lead. That proved to be the winning move as Martin kept Williamson at bay the rest of the way to score his second win of the year. Charlie Stallman had to come from the back of the six-car field and was closing in on Williamson when the race ended, settling for third. Barry Snyder was fourth and Tony Hampton fifth. Williamson won the heat race.
In the Strictly Stock feature Chris Anderson was asked to drive the Saturn previously driven by his brother and now driven by Steven Jacobs. Anderson returned the favor by putting the car in victory lane. Anderson started seventh in the ten-car field and was up to third on lap three. One lap later he passed Glen Wilson for second and on lap seven Anderson went around Heath Leonard for the lead. The race went non-stop and Anderson led by a full straightaway at the finish. Eric Boozel started sixth and made his way to second on lap twelve, but was nearly a half of a lap behind by that time, finishing second. Third thru fifth went to Garrett Watkins, Casey Steinhoff, and Glen Wilson. The heat race win went to Steinhoff.
Path Valley results 5/23
Strictly Stock (make-up from 5/9): 1.Eric Boozel (McVeytown, PA), 2.Casey Steinhoff, 3.Heath Leonard, 4.Steven Jacobs, 5.Glen Wilson DNS: Andrew Moist
Super Stock: 1.Brad McGinnis (Huntingdon, PA), 2.Alex Boozel, 3.Bill Powell, 4.Curt Dunn, 5.Troy Eckenrode, 6.Austin Johnson, 7.Carl Snare, 8.Shyann Bard, 9.Joey Burdge, 10.Deron Henry, 11.Shawn Shoemaker
Lap Leaders: Brad McGinnis (1-20)
Heats: Curt Dunn, Brad McGinnis
Mini Stock: 1.Shaine Sixeas (Mercersburg, PA), 2.Jeremy Ott, 3.Gary Dehart, 4.Frankie Gordon, 5.Tyler Horst, 6.Chris Anderson DQ: Josh Group (light) DNS: Shaun Linn
Late Model: 1.Andy Fries (Mercersburg, PA), 2.Eric Irvin, 3.Dave Dunkle, 4.Brad Kling, 5.George Dixon, 6.Tim Snare, 7.Jared Fulkroad, 8.Wes Bonebrake, 9.Garrett Gray DNS: Steve Stitt, Steve Bailor
Lap Leaders: Eric Irvin (1-22), Andy Fries (23-25)
Heats: Andy Fries, Dave Dunkle
4-Cyl. Thunder Car: 1.Kyle Martin (Cascade, MD), 2.Justin Williamson, 3.Charlie Stallman, 4.Barry Snyder, 5.Tony Hampton DNS: Tyler White, Justin Rasp
Lap Leaders: Kyle Martin (1-20)
Heat: Justin Williamson
Strictly Stock: 1.Chris Anderson (Rockhill, PA), 2.Eric Boozel, 3.Garrett Watkins, 4.Casey Steinhoff, 5.Glen Wilson, 6.Aaron Swope, 7.Ron Swope, 8.Willie Copenhaver, 9.Travis Heckman DQ: Heath Leonard (unsportsmanlike conduct)
Lap Leaders: Heath Leonard (1-6), Chris Anderson (7-20)
Heat: Casey Steinhoff