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Hummingbird Speedway Race Report 6-28           

June 30, 2014- Randy Albert 

FALLS CREEK- Hummingbird Speedway was back in action Saturday night in Falls Creek, PA.  Chris Farrell from Clearfield proved it isn’t over till it’s over by winning the BWP Bats Steel Block Late Model feature event in the last 100 feet of the race. Kyle Shannon from Brockway had smooth sailing in the Street Stock division with his win.  Steve Dunmire from Kittanning made his first appearance at the speedway a successful one by winning the Sunny 106.5 Micro Spring feature race.  In the Pure Stock class Dalton Gustafson from Weedville capitalized on some recent consistent runs winning his first career feature race. Matt Bryant from Weedville was back inaction after a few weeks off but that didn’t deter him from taking the checkered flag in the Front Wheel Drive class.  Special thanks go out this week to the Reynoldsville Car Wash for sponsoring this week’s trophies.
BWP Bats sponsored Steel Block Late Model cars were the first to line up for their feature event.  Bob Connor from DuBois and Tim Krape from Bellefonte were out front for the wave of the green flag from flagman Bob Sullinger.  Connor got it wound up early and in the lead followed by Krape and Skip Lindemuth from Hazen. Chris Farrell from Clearfield was hot on the tail of Dave Buchanan from Stifflertown wanting to get to the front quickly.  The cars quickly got into nose to tail mode with the main early mover and shaker being Jerry Redden from Mahaffey who started in thirteenth but was moving up fast.  Near the middle of the race lap cars began to play a role and Redden had moved into sixth and Farrell was working on Lindemuth for the third spot.  Connor was still in control with Krape following him closely in second.  Farrell began to make his moves first passing Lindemuth then sliding under Krape on the backstretch doing battle with him for a couple of circuits until Krape pulled ahead, Redden was a few car lengths back in fourth but unable to continue to move forward.  A caution brought the cars back together and Farrell made the best of it getting under Krape when he drifted high in turn two.  Redden snuck by him also but Krape gathered it back up retaking the position.  As the white flag flew it appeared Connor had it covered.  Farrell was close but not challenging and Krape and Redden were in a duel for third.  As they entered turn four the rear of Connor’s slid to the right causing him to hesitate and counter steer to correct.  Farrell was right there; nose tight against the tires his car even with the leader coming out of turn four, the drag race was on.  Inch by inch down the front stretch Farrell gained ground.  The fans were on their feet cheering for and pushing their favorite driver across the finish line.  Bob Sullinger had the bird’s eye view of the “by a nose” finish as Farrell edged out Connor for the win.  Farrell proved you race till the end because it isn’t over till it’s over.

Heat race winners in the division included Ed Connor , Jamie Barber and Chris Farrell. 

Kyle Shannon from Brockway and Colton Gearhart out of DuBois lined up in front for the Street Stock feature race.  Shannon was off to a great start taking the lead early.  The hot race was behind him as Gearhart had the outside, Steve Arthurs from Falls Creek had the inside, and just to keep it interesting Paul Kot from Brockway stuffed the nose of his car into the middle down the backstretch.  No sense in waiting for things to settle down, he came to race!  They stayed three wide down the back stretch, through the turns and into the next lap before settling into a tight trio for some serious racing.  Shannon’s car was smooth and fast out front with Gearhart in second but being pressured by Arthurs and Kot.  Behind them Bruce Hartzfeld was working his way forward having been put to the back from an earlier flat tire.  Lap after lap Kot stayed on the right rear fender of Arthurs pinching against the tires gaining ground with each pass.  He edged up by him in turn two and made it stick in three and four, the Gearhart car was in his sights.  Shannon continued his Saturday night cruise.  He was consistent, the car was fast and smooth and it was his race to lose.  Kot continued the pursuit of Gearhart, both drivers coming up on a slower car.  For a moment it looked like one of them would get held up by the lap car but they split it at the end of the backstretch, Gearhart high and Kot low.  At the turn four exit Kot had the advantage as Gearhart had to go a little wide to give room to the slower car.  Kot was not just the recipient of the lap car but he was also fast gaining ground quickly after the Gearhart pass but Shannon had been too consistent throughout the race and Kot ran out of time to get close enough to try for the lead.  Shannon took the win making up for missed opportunities in weeks past. 

Street Stock heat races were won by Steve Arthurs and Colton Gearhart.

The Sunny 106.5 Micro Sprints lined up behind Ryan Cuica from Salina and Steve Dunmire out of Kittanning.  At the drop of the flag Dunmire powered out to the lead followed by Cuica with Robert Garvey Jr from Frenchville and Dave Hawkins from Lower Burrell side by side for third and fourth.  Brian Marriott from Harrisburg was moving up in a nicely prepared car reminiscent of Bobby Labonte’s Interstate Battery car from a few years back.  Hawkins moved around Cuica in turn four after a caution restart with Marriott positioning himself to make the move in the next couple laps.  Dunmire began to move out to a comfortable lead with Hawkins doing the same in second.  The group of Marriott, Sean McAndrew from Apollo, and Garvey were keeping it interesting in the challenge for third through fifth.  DJ Furney from Canton Ohio was also putting the nose of his machine into the mix. As the laps clicked off the cars began to string out. Marriott and McAndrew were fast and making distance from the others but Dunmire who was faster continued to maintain the advantage he gained early in the race.  Dunmire went on to take the win.

Sean McAndrew, Steve Dunmire, and Dave Hawkins were the winners of the Sunny 106.5 Micro Sprint heat races.

The Pure Stock race started with Dustin Michuck from St Marys and Dave Kohler out of Rockton on the front row.  Michuck took the early lead with a gaggle of cars jockeying for position behind him including Kohler, Shawn Munoz from Punxsutawney, Matt Howell from Clearfield, and Dalton Gustafson from Weedville.  Howell, Munoz and Kohler were three wide down the backstretch with Kohler moving high to avoid the hard chargers but losing traction in turn four giving up the second spot to Munoz and Howell.  Gustafson also capitalized on the situation moving into fourth.  Howell shot under Munoz coming out of turn two then pulled up on the back bumper of Michuck.  Howell then pulled under Michuck to challenge for the lead with Gustafson moving around the outside of Munoz to vie for third place.  Howell and Michuck were too close coming out of turn four and the two touched ending what could have been a good night of both of them when the caution flag flew.  The restart found Gustafson on the pole with Munoz to his right.  Back in the mix was Kohler as well as Jim Challingsworth from St Marys, both moved past Munoz setting their sights on Gustafson.  Scott Zimmerman from Brookville and Dustin Challingsworth also from St Marys managed to move under and around Munoz but he dropped low coming back around the two challengers.  He did the same with Jim Challingsworth and managed to pull up on Kohler in the closing laps.  Munoz recovered from the loss of four positions late in the race to come back for a second place finish.  Gustafson has had some good runs this season and tonight he capitalized on those tonight taking his first feature win in a well prepared car.

Pure Stock heat race winners included Zach Meyers and Dustin Challingsworth.

The Front Wheel Drive cars made their way onto the track for the final full feature race of the evening.  Aaron Hill from Brookville and Matt Bryant from Weedville led the way for the start of the race.  Bryant made his way to the lead on the backstretch of the first lap as John Campisano from Punxsutawney move up to challenge Hill for second.  A three wide effort behind them included Cory Reitz from Brockway, Steven Hill from Brookville and Randy Albert out of Morrisdale vying for position.  After a few cautions Campisano managed to restart outside Bryant and gain the advantage.  Reitz was there also with Albert and Hill not far behind.  Dale Lindemuth from Brockway and Ricky Sheely from Hazen were also having good runs nosing up into the battle.  Albert managed to slide under Reitz late in the race when he slid high in turn two but Reitz came back on the next lap when Albert did the same.  Bryant was working on regaining the top spot from Campisano working both high and low to find enough grip to retake the position.  He final made it work on the high side.  Campisano began to fall back and Reitz couldn’t move forward from the third spot.  Bryant made a good comeback from a few weeks off from mechanical difficulties.  Weedville PA was well represented in the winner’s circle in the Pure Stock and Front Wheel Drive divisions.

Randy Albert, Matt Bryant, and Aaron Hill were the heat race winners in the division.

The winner of the Sunny 106.5 Micro Sprint “B” Main race was Ryan Cuica.

Net week brings some interesting activities to the track. 
It will be US Army Night with a special pace car, dog tags for the kids and a chance to talk to and thank our service men and women.  Representatives from the ARMY Recruiting Center in the Dubois Mall will be on hand to answer any questions and enjoy the evening’s entertainment. 

It will also be a special race for the Sunny 106.5 Micro Sprints with $1,000.00 to win and extra lap money.  This is sure to bring a full field of micro sprint cars and fans out for the fast and exciting division. 

Be sure to join us for some of the best short track racing in Central Pennsylvania at 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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