Friday marked a potential one time event. Three Charger features were run in one night. Twin 12 lap featured events were already on the schedule and an added make up feature from May 12 gave a total of three main events for the Stock Car division presented by Appalachian Auto LLC.
Jeremy Ott led early in the Charger make up feature from his front row starting spot. Ott was challenged by Dale Kreiser, who makes random starts on the Chargers but is the leading feature winner in the Pro Stock 4cyl class at the speedway. Ott has enjoyed much success at various local speedways, but in his first full season at Linda's Speedway his chances have been plenty to visit victory lane. After leading most of feature race Ott caught the tail of the field and Kreiser saw his opportunity to close up the lead. The duo was soon joined by Aaron Updegraff and Eric Hollenbach in a four car battle for the top spot. Kreiser drove to the outside of Ott in turns 1&2 and pulled even with the leader on the final lap before a yellow flag came out. Ott used the open race track to his advantage and held off the challenges of Kreiser on the restart to grab his first Linda's Speedway victory. Kreiser finished second followed by Updegraff, Hollenbach, and Charles Wengerd. Josh Michael earned the Jasen's Automotive Hard Charger coming from 16th to finish 6th. Josh Denny, Rob P
yle, Paul Lambert, and John Snavely rounded out the top ten finishers.
In the first on two twin 12 feature events it was finally a break out win for Aaron Updegraff. Updegraff led all 12 laps with various challengers including Chris Smith and Troy Hostetter. Updegraff has run at the front on many occasions, but has never been able to grab a win. That changed Friday as he crossed the line first in front of Hostetter, Jeremy Ott, Chris Smith, and Dale Kreiser.
In victory lane Updegraff pulled the highest inversion pill available in the bag. It was an eight. That put Chucky Kimmel on the pole of the feature.
On a night in which produced two first time winners it looked like Chucky Kimmel was in a prime spot to join the party and make it a clean sweep across the board at ChargerMania for the first timers. Kimmel led the early laps before a yellow on lap five because a set of light around the speedway shut off. The heat throughout the day effected a breaker in the box. Once the breaker cooled the light restarted. The time frame was about 15 minutes for Kimmel to think about what was coming in the final seven laps. Unfortunately his game plan came to a quick end when he lost his right front tire and retired to the pit area. Dale Kreiser was second and took over the top spot with Jeremy Ott knocking on his back door. With the roles reversed from the first feature of the night Kreiser did all he could to stay out front with a tire slowly losing air. Ott pulled to the inside of Kreiser a few times, but Kreiser remained out front. Ott made one last effort coming to the checkered flag but Kreiser was able to hold on for the win with Ott second. Eric Hollenbach won out a battle with Aaron Updegraff and Charles Wengerd for third through fifth spots.
Charles Wengerd was the Jasen's Automotive Hard Charger gaining the most spots in the two events with 10. Heat races were won by Updegraff, Smith, and Kimmel.
"I was telling my boyfriend that I started on the pole and won and it didn't feel like I earned it" said Lindsey Garl of one of her win at Shellhammer's Speedway. She earned one Friday night. Garl passed Mike Glass on the last corner of the heat race for the win and earned the pole for the feature race. Garl was joined by Mike Glass and Brett Bieber in the top three starting spots. Bieber and Glass sit one two on the all time Slingshot win list. Garl was still able to muscle the race lead away on the start. She would led until a lap 13 yellow flag slowed the field. Bieber and Ronnie Spitler would tail Garl through the cone on the restart, but neither would challenge her on her way to her first career Linda's Speedway feature win. Bieber finished in second just ahead of Spitler, Scott Gray, and Mike Glass.
It has been a dismal season for Brandon Firestine after so much promise from his first full time year with the Jersey Joe's Boardwalk Cafe 270 Micro Sprints in 2016. Firestine started on the front row of the feature Friday and flexed some muscle early driving away from the field. As Firestine caught the tail of the field, Devin Harron has wrestled second spot away from Stone Keller. Harron closed, but Firestine quickly bolted past four lap cars to put a lot of distance between himself and second place. The 270 Micro Sprints are not allowed to run radios to communicate with their crews. Firestine could have used that Friday. Firestine continued his rapid pace through traffic until he made contact with a car and spun out of the race lead. After 21 laps Devin Harron inherited the race lead. Harron himself has had his share of hard luck this season. That came to and end as the 9d car drove to his first win of 2017. It was the defending champions 14th win of his career. Josh Stoyer and Mike Rutherford traded the second spot over the final four circuits before settling in with Stoyer in second. Rutherford, Mike Boyer, and Tommy Kunsman were the top five across the line. Scott Gingrich, Dan Lane, Jesse Maurer, Ken Miller, and John Wagner were the top ten. Heat races were won by Harron, Rutherford, and Boyer.
The wings went back on the Hoosier Tire winged 600 Micro Sprints on Friday night. The inversion pill was drawn by the final heat race winner of the night and it invert four. Jason Sechrist benefited and became the pole setter for the feature event. The driver pulling the inversion was Tyler Walton. Sechrist led early before giving way to a hard charging Jim Radney. Radney showed the way while Walton began his climb from 12th to the front. By the half way mark Walton had worked to second. Radney struggled a little with lap traffic while Walton closed in. Walton has a close moment once Radney passed the lap car that spun right in front of Walton. Walton was able to avoid contact. On the lap 17 restart Walton would pick off Radney to compete the charge from the 12th spot and led the rest of the way to win. Radney was second with Tommy Kunsman, Sechrist, and Dan Souder rounding out the top five. Garrett Bars came from 20th to finish in sixth followed by Bj Antonio, Nash Ely, Matt Carr, and Dawson Landis. Heat races for the 600 Micro Sprints were Ken Murray, Dawson Landis, and Tyler Walton. Randy Kunkle Jr won the consolation race.
Ms Motorsports Taylor Albert was at the speedway Friday to meet and greet fans and throw the green flag in the Charger feature.
Bikes races were run at intermission. There is another bike race scheduled for later in the season.
Race Chasing Facebook page bonuses went to Devin Harron, Brett Bieber, Tyler Walton, and Jeremy Ott. Drivers must have the Race Chasing sticker on their car to be eligible for the bonuses.
Next Friday, May 26, will feature twin 15 lap features for the 600 Micro Sprints. Also in action will be the 270 Micro Sprints, Modifieds, plus an extra feature for the Modifieds from May 12. Also the annual Jonestown Throwdown for the Chargers will take place. Gates open at 5:30 and racing will start at 7:30.
For more information on the speedway or any of the upcoming event you can visit LindasSpeedway.com or follow the speedway on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. You can also call the speedway hotline at 717-865-5330.