Jonestown, PA - They said the September 1st event at Linda's Speedway was the best SpeedSTR ever held at the Jonestown quarter-mile. They said it had the best racing and closest finish of any SpeedSTR event held at Linda's.
Until last Friday night, that is...
Tyler Ross, from Lincoln University, PA, scored his second consecutive win in the USAC All Pro SpeedSTR main event at Linda's on Friday, just barely edging out Steve Drevicki at the stripe. The margin of victory for Ross was a scant 0.005-seconds!
"I love racing a SpeedSTR here," said a pumped up Ross in victory lane. "I would run one of these cars here every week if they were on the schedule."
Steve Drevicki and Tim Buckwalter made up a formidable front row as the field doubled up and prepared for the green in the 25-lap Lebanon Valley Classic. Buckwalter forged ahead off turn two on the first go-round as Drevicki fought with quick timer Briggs Danner, Mike Bednar, and Tom Mayberry for second through sixth positions.
On a restart with six laps in the books, Bednar zipped by Danner and Drevicki to secure the runner-up position behind the high flying Buckwalter. Ross, who started third but slid back several positions in the early going, was now mounting a comeback. He charged into the top six just prior to the halfway mark, which is when Bednar's strong effort came to an end as he pulled to the infield.
Buckwalter also fell victim to mechanical gremlins, as his Bagel Rack No. 7 suddenly slowed out of turn two and Tim steered his disabled car to the infield, and handed the top spot to Drevicki with Ross in second.
The pair of young lions, Drevicki and Ross, put on quite a show as the battled for the lead with Drevicki running the top and Ross sliding on the bottom or through the middle on a very fast and smooth quarter-mile.
Ross hounded Drevicki from laps 17 through 24, ducking to the bottom repeatedly as Drevicki kept up his momentum by rolling the top at both ends of the speedway and motoring back in front on the straightaways.
On the final lap, however, Ross had a plan and executed it to perfection. He went high in turns one and two and got a big run down the backchute. He pulled to the inside of Drevicki's RoadRunner Race Fuels No. 19s, then slid up across the nose of Drevicki's car to snatch the lead away in three and four. Drevicki tried a crossover move in turn four and the duo drag raced to the checkered flag. At the stripe, it was Tyler Ross over Steve Drevicki by just 0.005-seconds!
"I think he knew what I was gonna do (on the last lap)," said Ross afterward. "I'm just thankful it worked out."
Drevicki's runner-up finish was enough to give him the Action Track Takeover Night at Linda's point title in the mini-series for the USAC All Pro SpeedSTRs. "We weren't real good but we weren't real bad, either," said Drevicki as he summed up his night.
Following Ross and Drevicki across the line were Ken Meisner, TJ Mayberry, and Briggs Danner.
Heat race winners included Earl Paules and Mike Bednar.