Bates edges Nagel for second modified win
Everything fell in place for Kevin Bates of Friday night. The Lake Ariel driver capitalized when the leaders wrecked early in the race then held off a furious late race charge from Mike Nagel Jr. to win for the second time this year at Penn Can Speedway.
Bates and Nagel raced side by side at the finish to thrill the large crowd that was treated to the closest finish of the year and the largest fireworks display inSusquehannaCounty.
Butch Green won the 602 Sportsman extra distance event on Warner’s Gas Service Night. Earl Zimmer returned to his early season form as he outdistanced the Street Stock field. Rob Warner was the Factory Stock winner and Klem Underwood took the Four Cylinder victory.
Dan Pompey and Bobby Trapper led the field to the green flag on a muggy July night. Pompey and Trapper raced side by side for the first couple laps until the yellow flew for last week’s winner Mike Colsten who suffered having rear end damage after getting into the wall.
On the restart Pompey took control with Trapper close behind then came Tom Oleski, Kevin Bates and tenth starter Joey Grammes. Oleski got out of shape on lap eight and collected Bobby Trapper Jr. to draw the yellow.
For the restart Pompey led Trapper Mike Nagel Jr. and Bates. Pompey surged ahead on the restart but in turn two Trapper ran into the back of Pompey and took him out in front of the field.
Pompey and Trapper were done for the night meanwhile Brian Malcolm, Mike Nagel and Bobby Gunther Walsh were also caught up in the mess. This handed the lead to young Nagel Jr. with Bates on his outside for the restart.
The top two raced side by side until turn three on lap nine when Bates used the high side to grab the lead. Bates set sail with Nagel Jr., Grammes, 16th starter Brett Tonkin and ninth starter Mike Schane the top five. At the crossed flags Bates still led but wasn’t pulling away anymore from Nagel who was closely followed by Grammes.
Schane and Hartnett raced side by side for several circuits until Hartnett used the top to take over the fifth spot. Nagel Jr. in hisNEPWireless Wally Fiehl powered No.M7 was closing in on Bates as he was just a few car lengths back with five laps to go. Nagel Jr. was zipping around the outside of the 3/8 mile while Bates ran the top in turns one and two and switched to the bottom in three and four.
Tonkinand Hartnett raced side by side for fourth in the closing laps, Hartnett took the spot with three to go. Nagel Jr. was to Bates’ back bumper as they took the two to go sign. Once again Nagel got a run on the top off of turn four and pulled to Bates’ outside.
Bates moved up to block Nagel as they took the white flag but Nagel battled back as Bates ran the inside and Nagel pulled even off turn two. Nagel led into turn three but Bates through a slide job to move back ahead, Nagel shot to Bates’ inside off turn four pulling alongside but Bates in the Grower’s Garden Center No.42B Bicknell beat Nagel to the line by a couple feet to take the win.
Nagel Jr., 20 of Susquehanna, had his best Modified finish while Grammes of Leighton, in the Slug N Slam Construction No.5J finished third while Hartnett of Troy, and Tonkin of Carbondale, rounded out the top five. The next five were Schane, Billy Thornton, 17th starter Mel Schufer, Joey Colsten and Bobby Trapper Jr. Heat race winners were Pompey, Schane and Trapper Jr.
The 602 Sportsman ran a special 25 lap $700 to win feature on Friday night. Wes Campbell led from the start while Butch Green was moving in to challenge for the lead. Campbellled until lap nine when Green drove by on the inside to take the lead.
At the halfway mark Green led Campbell, Dusty Barton, Grant Hilfiger and Paul Rooney. Hilfiger was up to third and on teammateCampbell’s bumper on lap 15 when Hilfiger turnedCampbellwhich sent both to the tail of the field. Green was now challenged by Alex Stanton but Green held off several charges fromStantonto take the win. Kyle Rohner finished third while Rooney and Hilfiger completed the top five.
Earl Zimmer took home win number five in the Street Stocks. Ken Sparks Jr. challenged Zimmer on a lap seven restart but Zimmer pulled back away to take the dominating winSparksfinished second following him were Jason Butler, Jon Carpenter and Ryan Stone.
In the Factory Stocks Mark Andrus and Gary Cleveland swapped the lead early. Andrus held the lead till Rob Warner made a three wide move on lap four to take the lead for good. Warner won over a fast closing George Brown while Steve Simpson was third. Klem Underwood won in the Four Cylinders over Anthony Possemato and Justin Lawerence.
Warner’s Gas Service Night
Modified Feature: 1.Kevin Bates 2.Mike Nagel Jr. 3.Joey Grammes 4.Kevin Hartnett 5.Brett Tonkin 6.Mike Schane 7.Billy Thornton 8.Mel Schufer 9.Joey Colsten 10.Bobby Trapper Jr. 11.Bill Miller 12.Alan Rudalavage 13.Adam MacGeorge 14.Alan Kellogg 15.Mike Nagel 16.Steve Babicek 17.Bobby Gunther Walsh 18.Ken Titus 19.Tom Oleski 20.Dan Pompey 21.Bobby Trapper 22.Brian Malcolm 23.Grant Hilfiger 24.Mike Colsten.
602 Sportsman Feature: Butch Green, Alex Stanton, Kyle Rohner, Paul Rooney, Grant Hilfiger, Rich Talada, Randy Gates, Wes Campbell, Eric Bonham, Dusty Barton, Wayne Ross.
Street Stock Feature: Earl Zimmer, Ken Sparks Jr, Jason Butler, Jon Carpenter, Ryan Stone, Steve Deinhardt, Chad Stone, Gene Beadle, Troy Kress, Matt Spencer, Fred Christ.
Factory Stock Feature: Rob Warner, George Brown, Steve Simpson, Ted Mills, Gary Cleveland, Nathan Hill, Tom Velez, Dave Bagg, Ted MillsIII, Mark Andrus, DNS, Jay Wood.
Four Cylinder Feature: Klem Underwood, Anthony Possemato, Justin Lawrence, Brian Roth, Lenny Collins, Laurence Norton, Ronald Welch, Matt Hynds, DNS, Tim Davis Jr, Tucker Harpell.
This column is supplied by Ryan Lepre.