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Shaffer Tops All Stars; Knepper and Wagner Surpise Winners; Moore Ties Record
by Lou Long
Media Contact: Lou Long (412-760-9755)Mercer, PA (August 27, 2011): It was a splendid homecoming for the two-time and defending champion of the All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Cars, Tim Shaffer. The native of Aliquippa, PA, was just fifty minutes from his home when he was standing in victory lane. Surprise wins went to Alan Knepper in the Big Daddy's Speed Center Modified Lites and to Dennis Wagner in the ti22 Performance Outlaw Sprint Warriors. Meanwhile, Rusty Moore tied a track record by capturing his thirteenth win of the season in the Precise Racing Products Stock Cars.
"Boy, they sure made me work for that one, huh," said Shaffer after scoring the popular win. He had to search out a different line while hew was giving chase to early leader Daryn Pittman. We were pretty good there early, and I kept telling myself that we needed to find something different." Shaffer explained, "if you follow the guy and run the same line he is, it makes it hard to get past."
For his part, Pittman was disappointed. "We just got beat," he said. "The car was probably good enough, but I started making mistakes." He made no excuses, though. "You just don't lead that many laps and fall back to third and blame anybody but yourself," he said.
On the opposite end of the scale of emotions was runner-up David Gravel. "We were really coming there at the end," he said. "I just wish that it was 35 or 40 laps." Gravel explained that, in the late stages of the race, he had the wing back, and "the car was just awesome, it just sucks that we were second." He gave the credit to his new crew chief of four races, Tyler Swank, and to Brian Kemenah, who had been giving the Gravel team a garage from which to work.
Daryn Pittman and Tim Shaffer led the field to the green for the All Star 30 lapper. Pittman fired first, and led the first lap, ahead of Danny Holtgraver, Rod George, David Gravel and Ed Lynch, Jr.
Shaffer was nipping at Pittman's heels, though, as they entered lapped traffic on lap five. Shaffer looked to the inside of the leader as they were weaving their way past the slower cars, while Holtgraver remained within striking distance.
The action was slowed on lap 9 for a rare miscue by George, who spun off turn two while running fourth.
On the restart, Pittman and Shaffer got away cleanly, as did Holtgraver. Marty Muscles Perovich, in one of his final outings before returning home to Australia, moved up to fourth ahead of David Gravel.
There was a red flag on lap 11, when Lernerville Speedway track champion Carl Bowser flipped in turn four. he was unhurt, but the car was unable to return to the track.
Green flag conditions prevailed for two more laps, with Gravel passing Perovich for fourth as the only significant change at the front of the pack. On lap 13, though, Andy McKisson spun off the track at the inside of turn two.
On the restart, Pittman held the lead, but just one lap later, Shaffer got a full head of steam going down the back stretch. Shaffer dove to the inside and pulled alongside Pittman through the turns. Shaffer grabbed the lead coming off tiurn four and never looked back.
After the final caution, the man on the move was David Gravel. He lined up in fourth and methodically picked off cars when the racing resumed. When he reached second, he trailed the leader, Shaffer, by a full straightaway. In the waning laps, Gravel chopped into the lead, but Shaffer had more than enough cushion to preserve the win.
When the checkers fell, it was Shaffer over Gravel and Pittman. Danny Holtgraver recovered for fourth, after falling back to fifth while racing through lapped traffic. Dale Blaney rounded out the top five.
Danny Smith and Ed Lynch, Jr. finished sixth and seventh. Luxaire Heating & Cooling Sprint Car points leader Bob Felmlee got eighth. Fred Rahmer and Aaron Ott, looking for a dry place to race, completed the top ten.
Fast timer for the 31 cars on hand was Gravel. Heat wins went to Ott, Perovich, and Bowser. The dash winner was Shaffer, while the B Main winner was Brian Ellenberger.
Mark Marcucci sped off to the lead from his pole starting position in the Big Daddy's Speed Center Modified Lites, and was just one corner away from the win when his car suddenly veered to the left. Marcucci broke a spindle and lost several positions, handing the win to Alan Knepper.
While Marcucci dominated the early action, it was Knepper advancing through the field in quick order. Knepper took second on the opening lap. He had two opportunities to line up beside Marcucci for restarts, but Marcucci was up to the task on both occasions.
Knepper, who maintained a steady pace throughout the event, saw Marcucci slide high in turn three on lap 14. The next time around, he saw Marcucci struggle to make it through the corner, and he knew then that the victory was his.
Knepper earned $500 for his win, and took a good share of the $2,000 contingency prizes offerd by the Billstein Modified Lites All Stars for the event.
Finishing behind the surprised winner was Andy Feil. Marcucci saved the car and crossed in third. Fourth was Tom Kilne and fifth went to divisional points leader Darrin Gallagher.
After the checkers, Marcucci had problems nogotiating throught turns one and two, collecting Cody Bova, who had finished sixth. Seventh went to Kotie Kirkbride. Positions eight trough ten belonged to Breyton Santee, Josh Santee and Jacob Bova.
Shane Pfeuffer crashed hard in his heat race and was unable to start the feature. His car was destroyed, but he was unhurt.
In the Precise Racing Products Stock Cars, Trusty Rusty Moore tied the track record of thirteen wins for the season, but it was not easy. He lined up in twelfth, and it took him nearly half of the race to work his way into the top five. Once there, he started picking off the competition one at a time.
It looked as though early leader Chad O'Brien may have Moore covered. However, a caution gave Moore the opportunity to line up beside him for the restart. A few laps after the racing resumed, Moore swept by O'Brien witha powerful inside move to claim the lead rounding the first and second turns.
Moore led O'Brien to the finish. Bobby Whitling worked into third, from last on the starting grid. Terry Wheeler and Shawn Hooks were fourth and fifth.
Curt Bish, Bill Phillips, Jim Flaherty, Matt Wagner and Ryan Moyer were the next five across the line.
The final race of the evening was the ti22 Performance Outlaw Sprint Warriors. Taking the win, for the third race in a row, was Dennis Wagner. Guy Griffin, points leader in the class, was the early leader and he appeared to have the race well in hand when misfortune struck. Something broke as the car went through turn two with two laps remaining and he limped into the pits, That gave the lead to Wagner, who cruised to victory in the fifteen lap affair. Finishing second was Michael Bauer. Positions three through five went to Skip Dauigherty in his new ride, the former Mike Lutz 86, Dean Ruth, and Adam Anderson. The next four runners were Jim Morris, Justin Whitesell, Jacob Lagestee and Rob McMillen. Griffin was creditted with tenth based on laps completed.
All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Cars:
1. 83-Tim Shaffer, 2. 89G-David Gravel, 3. 27-Daryn Pittman, 4. D4-Danny Holtgraver, 5. 2-Dale Blaney, 6. 4-Danny Smith, 7. 2L-Ed Lynch Jr., 8. 6F-Bob Felmlee, 9. 51-Fred Rahmer, 10. 77-Aaron Ott, 11. 23-Jimmy Light, 12. 20E-Brian Ellenberger, 13. 7-Eric Williams, 14. 4G-Rod George, 15. Ox-Andy McKisson, 16. 15-Scott Priester, 17. 12-Jared Ridge, 18. 17-Marty Perovich, 19. 33-Brent Matus, 20. 5K-Adam Kekich, 21. 45-Rob Chaney, 22. 3-Pete Miller III, 23. 10-Carl Bowser, 24. O8-Dan Kuriger. Hard Charger: 20E-Brian Ellenberger[+7].
All Stars Qualifying - Kistler Engines: 1. 89G-David Gravel, 13.591, 2. 83-Tim Shaffer, 13.614, 3. 45-Rob Chaney, 13.658, 4. 4G-Rod George, 13.729, 5. 27-Daryn Pittman, 13.746, 6. D4-Danny Holtgraver, 13.759, 7. 2L-Ed Lynch Jr., 13.807, 8. 2-Dale Blaney, 13.841, 9. 23-Jimmy Light, 13.865, 10. 6F-Bob Felmlee, 13.947, 11. 51-Fred Rahmer, 13.968, 12. 4-Danny Smith, 14.041, 13. 7-Eric Williams, 14.050, 14. O8-Dan Kuriger, 14.059, 15. 15-Scott Priester, 14.091, 16. 77-Aaron Ott, 14.096, 17. 17-Marty Perovich, 14.102, 18. 10-Carl Bowser, 14.108, 19. 20E-Brian Ellenberger, 14.132, 20. 3-Pete Miller III, 14.174, 21. Ox-Andy McKisson, 14.204, 22. 5K-Adam Kekich, 14.291, 23. 12-Jared Ridge, 14.447, 24. W20-Greg Wilson, 14.560, 25. O4-Cap Henry, 14.563, 26. 13-Brandon Matus, 14.599, 27. 96-Lindsay Enscoe, 14.707, 28. 33-Brent Matus, 14.821, 29. 2S-Francis Sesco, 99.999, 30. 22S-Brandon Spithaler, 99.999, 31. 1R-Gale Ruth, 99.999.
Heat 1 - Kears Speed Shop (8 Laps - Top 6 finishers transfer to the A-feature): 1. 77-Aaron Ott, 2. 7-Eric Williams, 3. 6F-Bob Felmlee, 4. 4G-Rod George, 5. 2L-Ed Lynch Jr., 6. 89G-David Gravel, 7. 20E-Brian Ellenberger, 8. 5K-Adam Kekich, 9. O4-Cap Henry, 10. 33-Brent Matus.
Heat 2 - All Pro Heads (8 Laps - Top 6 finishers transfer to the A-feature): 1. 17-Marty Perovich, 2. O8-Dan Kuriger, 3. 83-Tim Shaffer, 4. 51-Fred Rahmer, 5. 27-Daryn Pittman, 6. 2-Dale Blaney, 7. 3-Pete Miller III, 8. 12-Jared Ridge, 9. 13-Brandon Matus, 10. 2S-Francis Sesco.
Heat 3 - MSD Ignition (8 Laps - Top 6 finishers transfer to the A-feature): 1. 10-Carl Bowser, 2. 23-Jimmy Light, 3. 4-Danny Smith, 4. D4-Danny Holtgraver, 5. 45-Rob Chaney, 6. Ox-Andy McKisson, 7. 15-Scott Priester, 8. W20-Greg Wilson, 9. 96-Lindsay Enscoe, 10. 22S-Brandon Spithaler.
Dash - Outerwears Performance Products (6 Laps, finishing order determined first 6 starting positions of A-feature: 1. 83-Tim Shaffer, 2. 27-Daryn Pittman, 3. 4G-Rod George, 4. D4-Danny Holtgraver, 5. 89G-David Gravel, 6. 45-Rob Chaney.
B-Main - University of Northwestern Ohio (12 Laps - Top 6 finishers transfer to the A-feature): 1. 20E-Brian Ellenberger, 2. 15-Scott Priester, 3. 3-Pete Miller III, 4. 5K-Adam Kekich, 5. 33-Brent Matus, 6. 12-Jared Ridge, 7. 96-Lindsay Enscoe, 8. 1R-Gale Ruth, 9. W20-Greg Wilson, 10. 13-Brandon Matus, 11. O4-Cap Henry, 12. 22S-Brandon Spithaler, 13. 2S-Francis Sesco.
Big Daddy's Speed Center Mofied Lites:
1. Alan Knepper (20); 2. Andy Feil (08); 3.Mark Marcucci (8M); 4. Tom Kline (68); 6. Cody Bova (20B); 7. Kotie Kirkbride (97N); 8. Breyton Santee (9); 9. Josh Santee (3); 10. Jacob Bova (28J); 11. Dan Demyan (91); 12. Andrew Bruce (77X); 13. Bill Stivason (116); 14. Taylor Smith (23TT); 15. Lynn Knepper (27). DNS: Shane Pfeuffer (717). Heat winners: Gallagher, Marcucci.
Precise Racing Products Stcok Cars:
1. Rusty Moore (17M); 2. Chad O'Brien (77); 3. Bobby Whitling (7W); 4. Terry Wheeler (2W); 5. Shawn Hooks (65); 6. Curt Bish (29T); 7. Bill Phillips (23Jr.); 8. Jim Flaherty (38SPL); 9. Matt Wagner (12); 10. Ryan Moyer (13X); 11. Andy Thompson (7); 12. Tim Burns (66); 13. Darrin Hyde (4); 14. Steve Burns (70B); 15. Brian Wagner (56); 16. Brandon Johnston (14J); 17. Travis Walsh (1); 18. Rodney Thoms (124); 19. Dan Lewis (64); 20. Raymond Reynolds (73); 21. Russ Byler (06R); 22. Will Aley (9); 23. Charlie McMillen (61M); 24. Gary Miller (1M). Heat winners: Byler, O'Brien and Lewis.
ti22 Performance Outlaw Sprint Warriors:
1. Dennis Wagner (38); 2. Michael Bauer (35); 3. Skip Daugherty (86); 4. Dean Ruth (14G); 5. Adam Anderson (5B); 6. Jim Morris (16); 7. Justin Whitesell (17); 8. Jacob Lagestee (72); 9. Rob McMillen (5); 10. Guy Griffin (11); 11. Harold Braden, Jr. (9); 12. Mike Bertolini (G1). 13. Mike Flynn (69X). Heat winners, Whitesell and Griffin.