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Hummingbird Speedway Race Report
June 16, 2014- Randy Albert
REYNOLDSVILLE-  Hummingbird Speedway was back in action Saturday night with another full card of racing entertainment. The main attraction for the evening was a visit by Bud Garvey’s racing pioneers. These show and go cars represent racing the way it used to be. Today they are in a little better condition preserving the history of the sport we love. The cars took to the track at intermission and you could tell the drivers would have loved to open them up and really throw some dirt but these machines and drivers are too valuable to risk not having them for future generations to enjoy.

Also taking to the track but more than willing to mix it up was Chris Farrell from Clearfield, the winner in the in the BWP Bats Steel Block Late Model division. Bruce Hartzfeld out of Stump Creek was back in the winner’s circle in the Street Stock class. In the Sunny 106.5 Radio Micro Sprint feature race the winner was Sean McAndrew from Apollo. Pure Stock honors went to Jason Beichner from Shippenville. Closing out the main events for the evening, Corey Reitz from Brockway came away the winner in the Front Wheel Drive class.

Chris Farrell and Dave Buchanan were on the front row for the BWP Bats Steel Block Late Model feature race. Chris is from Clearfield and Dave races out of Cherry Tree. Bob Sullinger dropped the green flag and Farrell and Buchanan dropped the hammer. Not wanting to be left out of the action Ed Connor from DuBois quickly went to the inside with Buchanan in the middle and Farrell outside, making it three wide down the backstretch. Connor kept the nose of his machine nipping the tires in the turns in what turned out to be a great line for him taking him to the lead early in the race. Farrell was in pursuit through a caution flag with Buchannan being joined by Bill Davis from Luthersburg and Bob McMillen out of St Marys. Other racers who had to work from back in the pack included Dwayne Brooks from Falls Creek, Eric Moore from Frenchville and last week’s winner Bob Connor from DuBois, all trying to get a shot at Ed Connor and Farrell. When Ed Connor drove his street stock it was typically down against the tires and on most nights you can find Farrell up on the cushion looking for every last ounce of bite available. This set up a classic duel between the two very competitive drivers, Connor down low and Farrell up high. Farrell finally made the move around Connor taking the lead. As they pulled away from the group Moore was busy trying to get past Reitz and McMillen. Buchanan had dropped off the pace a bit losing ground to his competitors. On a restart Connor continued to chase Farrell who knows how to make the best of a good situation. Moore managed to wedge under McMillen in turns one and two taking fourth and setting his sights on Reitz who was having a good run. Reitz eventually succumbed to Moore’s pressure relegating him to fourth. Farrell continued to lead with both Connor and Moore trying to make up the distance between them. Moore was fast and was quickly gaining ground on Connor with a good pass on lap traffic in turn two. Connor had gone high on the car and Moore pointed his car between the tires and the lap car getting a good launch off of turn two. That put him under Connor for the closing laps of the race using the line to take the second spot away from Connor.   Connor didn’t waste any time in regrouping though, retaking the spot with two to go. Moore tried one last stab coming out of turn four and was able to pull up on Connor’s back fender but not able to make the pass at the checkered flag. When the combination of driver, crew, and car is on, and it usually is, Chris Farrell is tough to beat. Ed Connor had a great run and Moore had the disadvantage of being tied up in traffic early in the race but Farrell took advantage of the opportunities presented to him using his skill and well prepared car to take the win in another exciting competition. 

Three heat races were held for the late model drivers. Winners included Eric Moore, Bob McMillen, and Dwayne Brooks. 

Street Stock drivers made their way to the track being led by Bruce Hartzfeld from Stump Creek and Paul Kot from Brockway. Paul makes the quick jump out of the late model into his brother’s street stock pulling double driving duty each night. Steve Arthurs from Falls Creek was quickly in the mix first looking inside. Kot closed the door coming out of turn two so Arthurs looked to the high line for a way around the leaders. Hartzfeld was in control on the straight away with Arthurs and Kot keeping up the fight for second. Shawn Lindemuth out of Brookville was not far behind in the fourth spot. Arthurs cleared Kot and began to chase the leader down as Lindemuth now pulled to the inside of Kot to take up the charge for third. Arthurs gained back some ground on a restart and pulled up on the left door of Hartzfeld but couldn’t quite make the pass. After a few laps he tucked in behind the leader on the straights ducking down in the turns but not quite finding the right combination. Late in the race Arthurs threw the car into turn one hard trying to make something work causing him to loop it in turn ending his efforts to overtake the lead. Hartzfeld stayed consistent throughout the race keeping the line that worked for him which led him to victory.

The lone heat race was won by Steve Arthurs.

After a first lap caution the Micro Sprint cars set up for a green flag run. Robert Robertson of Delmont and Kyle Colwell from Knox made up the front row. Robertson’s night ended early when he pulled to the outside of turn four on the first lap pulling the caution. The restart began single file and found Sean McAndrew from Apollo and Robert Garvey Jr from Grassflat at the head of the pack. As the two front runners made the best of the restart Jason Houtz from Mifflintown was making moves behind them advancing past Colwell and Dave Hawkins from Lower Burrell. McAndrew moved out to a 10-15 car length lead over Garvey with another 5 lengths back to Houtz. Hawkins was close to McAndrew but couldn’t gain enough momentum to make a bid for the spot. The laps click off quickly in these little cars so you better make your move early if you want a shot at the leader. McAndrew was fast and the green flag run didn’t give anyone a chance to make a bid for the top spot. Garvey came home in second followed by Houtz Colwell and Hawkins.

Brandon Hawkins, Bob Garvey Jr, and Sean McAndrew won the heat races in the Micro Sprint division.

Dustin Challingsworth from St Marys and Cory Silvis out of Brookville led the cars on the parade lap and for the start of the Pure Stock feature. Dalton Gustafson wasted no time in making it three wide in turn one wedging the car between Silvis and Jason Beichner from Shippenville. He then moved to the outside of Challingsworth to power past the leader on lap three. Beichner followed him along the rail to overtake Challingsworth for the second position. Shawn Munoz from Punxsutawney was back in fourth racing his way toward the leaders. A caution restart reeled Gustafson back in and placed Beichner on his right side door panel. Beichner and Gustafson raced side by side for a few laps until Beichner gained the advantage with Gustafson hot on his tail. Challingsworth and Munoz were in their own battle not too far behind the leaders with Munoz gaining ground with each lap using the low groove. Gustafson kept the leader within his sights but couldn’t regain the advantage he had earlier in the race. Munoz managed to wrestle the third spot from Challingsworth as the laps wound down. Gustafson put on a late race charge with two to go pulling up on the back bumper of the leader and dropping low in the turns to pull up alongside Beichner. On the final lap Gustafson got a strong run going into turn three pulling up alongside the leader in four. It was a neck and neck drag race coming out of turn four each car even on the last straight stretch. Beichner was up against the outside rail with Gustafson to his right. Beichner was the driver with the slight edge at the flag stand taking the win by less than a car length as Gustafson had to settle for second and the view of the right rear quarter panel of the Beichner car at the end of the race.

Dalton Gustafson and Doug Surra were the winners of the Pure Stock heat races. 

The Front Wheel Drive Four Cylinders were the final main show of the evening and leading the charge was Dale Lindemuth from Falls Creek and Troy Peace from Big Run. Peace got off to a good start moving into the lead early followed by Lindemuth. Cory Reitz from Brockway slipped to the outside on the back stretch to take the second spot away from Lindemuth on the next lap. Reitz was quickly on the back bumper of Peace as Lindemuth had to contend with Ricky Sheely from Hazen and Frank Barrett out of DuBois. Reitz looked to the left of the Peace car a number of times but came up short. On a restart he did manage to gain the advantage going into turns one and two but Peace ducked back under him to retake the lead. Barrett was having a good run right behind the leaders in third and John Campisano, last week’s winner from Punxsutawney, had moved up to fourth before his night ended early with mechanical difficulties. Peace was a bit loose in turns one and two and Reitz was right on his tail taking advantage of the situation sliding off of Peace’s bumper into the top spot. A couple of late race cautions bunched up the field but no one could challenge Reitz who went on to take the win.

Heat race winners in the division included Cory Reitz and John Campisano. 

In the B Main race for the Micro Sprints the winner was Brian Forester from Saxonburg.

It’s hard to imagine but in two weeks the mid-season point championship will take place with double points in all divisions. Be sure to join us as the competitors try and take advantage of the opportunity to make a bid for bragging rights at the end of the year.

For some of the best short track racing in Central Pennsylvania be sure to visit Hummingbird Speedway this Saturday night. Hummingbird Speedway provides a family friendly environment and competitive action for the racing enthusiast. 

Steel Block Late Models, Street Stocks, Micro Sprints, Pure Stocks, and Front Wheel Drive Four Cylinders will make up next week’s program.    Visit the speedway web site at www.hummingbirdspeedway.com for details on next week’s race, point standings, weekly photographs, and more.

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