Five divisions battled Saturday night in the precursor to Monday’s Appalachian Mountain Speedweek Super Late Model event at Roaring Knob Motorsports Complex in Markleysburg, PA.
Grabbing the checkered flag, Saturday, were Nolan Dalton, RUSH Crate Late Models; Vic Vandergrift, E-Mods; Jim Byers, Street Stocks; Ken Burkholder, Chargers and Jarred Barclay, Roadrunners.
The High Gear Speed Shop RUSH Crate Late Models competed for 20 laps in the division’s tune-up for Monday’s $1,000 to-win event. Dalton, of Morgantown, WV, picked up his first victory of the season, but it did not come easily. The defending track champion began the race on the pole, but he was forced to hold off strong challenges from Rick Strickler and John Over throughout the affair. Strickler assumed the lead on lap two, but he was overtaken by Dalton one lap later. The trio continued to mix it up until Over spun late in the event. Meanwhile, Louie Krushansky was motoring his way to the front of the field from his ninth-starting position. Krushansky picked off cars one at a time, but the Morgantown driver fell just one spot short as he finished second. Hesston’s Rick Singleton finished third followed by Connellsville, PA’s Ken Herman in fourth. Stickler, of Morgantown, faded a bit to finish fifth. Acme, PA’s Troy Shields and Stoystown, PA’s Chad McClellan won the heats.
Stoystown’s Dennis Perigo grabbed the early lead in the E-Mod event. Vandergrift, of Fairmont, WV, started beside Perigo on the front row. The two battled side-by-side several times before Vandergrift emerged as the leader. The two-time track champion moved ahead to claim his first win of the season. Perigo settled for second. The Cramer brothers finished third and fourth, respectively. Josh Cramer, of Greensburg, PA, out-dueled his brother Nick, of Latrobe, PA. Defending track champion Denny Nakutis, of Graysville, PA, rounded out the top five. Perigo claimed the heat race.
The Penn Summit Insurance Agency Street Stocks saw a familiar face return to victory lane as McClellandtown, PA’s Jim Byers claimed his fourth win of the season. Byers grabbed the lead from Jason Gibbs on lap one, and he never relinquished it as he led flag-to-flag for the victory. The prior week’s winner Scott Spade, of Farmington, PA, began the race in seventh and moved his way to the second position. That’s as far he would get as Byers claimed the decisive victory. Spade finished second. Dunbar, PA’s Bob Nelson finished third followed by Masontown, PA’s Mike Duritsky in fourth. Farmington’s Martin Spade, Jr., crossed the stripe in fifth. Duritsky and Scott Spade won the heats.
The Fort Necessity Garage Chargers event produced a popular winner as defending track champion, Ken Burkholder, claimed his first win of the season. The Mill Run, PA pilot began on the pole and led flag-to-flag to claim the checkers. A caution with two laps remaining would force Burkholder to hold off a hard-charging J.T. Baird, who had moved to second from his seventh-starting spot. Burkholder would pull away on the final two circuits to cross the stripe first. Baird, of Uniontown, PA, finished second. Confluence, PA’s Cody Colflesh finished third followed by Ursina, PA’s C.J. Nicola in fourth. Burkholder’s younger brother, Kyle Burkholder of Mill Run claimed fifth-place honors. Baird and Ken Burkholder won the two heats.
Somerset, PA’s Jarred Barclay made it two wins in a row in the Newt’s York Bar Roadrunner division. Barclay started the race in seventh and quickly moved his way to the front spot by lap four. While he was advancing his position, fans were entertained by the father-son tandem of Paul Koffler, Jr., and Paul Koffler III, as they battled each other. Mark Seiler got in on the fun toward the front of the field, as well. Barclay checked out from the field to grab the victory. When the dust settled from second on back, West Leisenring, PA’s Paul Koffler, Jr., claimed second. Hopwood, PA’s Seiler was third and Paul Koffler III, of Connellsville took fourth. David Friend, also of Connellsville, rounded out the top five. Barclay and Ridgely, WV’s Dwayne Rhodes grabbed the heat race wins.
High Gear Speed Shop RUSH Crate Late Models: 1. Nolan Dalton, 2. Louie Krushansky, 3. Rick Singleton, 4. Ken Herman, 5. Rick Strickler, 6. Russell Baird, Jr., 7. Troy Shields, 8. Mike Lewis, 9. Garrett Shepherd, 10. Jeff Compton, 11. John Over, 12. Michael Lake, 13. Vince Masi, Jr., 14. Chad McClellan, 15. Greg Hauger
E-Mods: 1. Vic Vandergrift, 2. Dennis Perigo, 3. Josh Cramer, 4. Nick Cramer, 5. Denny Nakutis, 6. Bill Yohe, 7. Ron Howard
Penn Summitt Insurance Agency Street Stocks: 1. Jim Byers, 2. Scott Spade, 3. Bob Nelson, 4. Mike Duritsky, 5. Martin Spade, 6. Josh Bendeshaw, 7. Scott Bittinger, 8. Jason Gibbs, 9. Michael Duritsky, Jr., 10. Kevin Collins, 11. Steve Settle, 12. Herb Karlinsey, 13. Ryan Newman, 14. Buddy Fickes, 15. Barry Farris DNS: Jamie Kohan
Fort Necessity Garage Chargers: 1. Ken Burkholder, 2. J.T. Baird, 3. Cody Colflesh, 4. C.J. Nicola, 5. Kyle Burkholder, 6. John Redshaw, 7. Justin Howell, 8. Tanner Hauger, 9. Dan Chesney, 10. Allen Fortney, 11. Erick Miller
Newt’s York Bar Roadrunners: 1. Jarred Barclay, 2. Paul Koffler, Jr., 3. Mark Seiler, 4. Paul Koffler, III, 5. David Friend, 6. Cindy Rhodes, 7. Todd Detrick, 8. Dustin Detrick, 9. Chris Shoemaker, 10. Dwayne Rhodes, 11. Justin Hornick DNS: Steve Riggleman