Heat # 1 - Doug Voldan (S.Amherst); Nicholas Wolfe (Spencer); Joe Brooks (Wellington); Mark Fisher (Vermilion); DNF - Ed Sedlacek (Garfield Hts.) 6 laps; Robert Zelenka (Cleveland); 1 lap; DNS - Dan Smith
Heat # 2 - Harkins; Halcomb; Smith; Aslaksen; Neil Broski (Cleveland); Dave Gaum (Cleveland)
Feature (15 laps - 12 cars) - Harkins; Aslaksen; Smith; Halcomb; Broski; Gaum; Zelenka; Voldan; Fisher; Brooks; Sedlacek; (all of these drivers completed 15 laps); Wolfe (14 laps); DNS - Springer
The North Coast Modified Challenge race number three was the main event at Lorain County Speedway on Saturday night June 6, 2015. With a fifty lap feature race paying $1,000 to the winner the action would be fast and furious. Going into tonights racing program, defending Modified champion, Kenny Phillips led the points chase with 226 points. Jeremie Wiggins was second with 217 points.
Kenny Phillips set the fast time during qualifying with a 14.935. Rick Groetsch won the Dash Race and the third Heat Race. The other Heat Race winners were Kurt Hennings and Tigh Shaffer.
The Modified feature saw the front row of Clay Pope and Norm Taylor lead the twenty one car field to the green flag. Taylor took the early lead as Tigh Shaffer, who started fourth ran second. The caution flag waved on lap two for Terry Groner. The restart saw a multi car spin in turn one for another caution. The cone was on the track for the inside or outside choice. Shaffer took the lead followed by Taylor, Matt Marlowe, T.J. Stineman, and Pope. Mark Smith advanced into the top five as Pope fell off of the pace. The caution flag waved on lap twelve for a spin. Rick Groetsch would be out of the race.
The restart order was Shaffer, Taylor, Marlowe, Stineman and Smith the top five. Shaffer led as Marlowe took second followed by Taylor, Stineman and Smith. Stineman took to the outside and advanced to third on lap eighteen. Lap twenty saw Shaffer and Marlowe battle for the lead. Marlowe led followed by Stineman, Shaffer, Taylor and Tyler Shullick. The caution flag waved on lap thirty for a car blocking the pit chute.
The running order was Marlowe, Stineman, Shaffer, Shullick and Taylor. Marlowe and Stineman pulled away from the field before another caution on lap thirty two. Norm Taylor came to a stop in turn two on the restart. Marlowe led as Stineman and Shaffer battled for second with Stineman getting the position. Shullick ran third followed by K. Phillips and Shaffer. The caution flag came out for Ryan Cypher. Before this restart Shullick took the outside lane and would be along side of Marlowe on the restart. Disaster struck as contact was made between Shullick and Marlowe, both cars would be out of the race.
K.Phillips and Stineman would now be the front row with K. Phillips taking the lead. K.Phillips opened up his lead as Smith took over second in the closing laps. At the finish it would be Kenny Phillips, the 2014 Modified champion and current points leader getting his first feature win of the 2015 season in tonights third North Coast Modified Challenge event.
The Chargers fifteen lap feature saw Ed Sedlacek and Robert Zelenka making up the front row. Zelenka held a narrow lead, then opened up a slight advantage. With four laps scored Jim Harkins shot into the lead, working his way up through the pack. Harkins opened up a comfortable lead and was never challenged. The battle was for second between Dan Smith and Trent Aslaksen. Aslaksen would get second. Jim Harkins would score his first career feature win in the Charger division.
The Crate Sprint twelve lap feature was paced by Brian Gibbs and Xavier Howard. Gibbs led briefly but Howard took the point and opened up a comfortable lead by the mid point of the race. The eighteen year old Howard would go unchallenged to take the checkered flag.
The Grand Nationals were up next for a twenty lap Cone Race. It would be polesitter Carl Smith taking the early lead. Keith Platz ran second. Bob Lusetti, Jeff Fade Jr. and Parker Ennes rounded out the top five. The yellow flag was out with six laps in. The restart would see the front row of Carl Smith and Bob Lusetti decide either the inside or outside position. There was another yellow flag, then a red flag as the leaders made contact before one lap was scored. Carl Smith would be out of the race. Following a brief clean up the race resumed with Lusetti and Fade Jr. now making up the front row.
The caution waved again on this restart when Fade Jr. spun in turn three. The red flag waved on this restart when Bobby Schramm lost two tires. When the race resumed it was Lusetti with the lead followed by Ennes, Stacey Gerken, Bill Johnson and Fade Jr. Another yellow flag with nine laps in the books.
There were only six cars running at this point as the cone was placed on the track for the front row of Lusetti and Gerken. It would be Stacey Gerken, making his first appearence of the season with the lead. Only one lap was completed before another caution flag on lap ten. Gerken led followed by Fade Jr., Lusetti, Ennes and Luther Hurley. Stacey Gerken who is now in his thirtieth year of racing, made a triumphant return to the winners circle by winning tonights Grand National feature.
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