posted April 21, 2001 10:36 AM
WILLIAMS GROVE SPEEDWAY
DEWEASE WINS WILD THREE-CAR SCRAMBLE FOR SECOND GROVE WIN
MECHANICSBURG, PA, 4/20/01 - It will go down as one of the classic races in
Williams Grove history.
In a wild three-car race for the lead, which saw the lead change three
times over the final laps, culminated with Mont Alto's Lance Dewease passing
four-time defending track champion Fred Rahmer on the final go-around to
become the first repeat winner this season at the historic Mechanicsburg
Dewease slid under Rahmer exiting the second turn of the final lap to take
the lead away and then raced cleanly through the final two turns to pick-up
his second Williams Grove victory of the season in the 25 lap super sprint
feature Friday night.
"That was a lot of fun," said an outwardly happy Dewease to a cheering
grandstand. "You won't see no better racing than what we have here in
Pennsylvania...I know that there's been people on the Internet that have
been talking about how good California racing is and all that."
"But all I know is that this is the only place in the country that don't
run time trials weekly and we put the fast guys in the back. That's what
it's all about, putting a show on for the fans."
Polesitter Josh Wells grabbed the lead at the outset over fellow frontrow
starter Troy Whitesel with third-starting Rick Lafferty, fourth-starting
Shawn Keen and fifth-starting Darren Eash in tow.
A Kyle Sauder flip in the first and second turns on the second lap brought
the action to a halt. The ensuing restart saw Wells maintain the top spot
over Whitesel, Keen, Mark Smith and Rick Lafferty.
A spin by last week's feature winner, Greg Hodnett, in the second turn
brought out the caution flag on the third lap.
From the it was a non-stop horse race to the final.
Whitesel showed some power as he slipped around Wells for the lead coming
off the fourth turn of the fourth lap and pulled out to a tenuous one second
lead over next few laps.
Meanwhile the heavy hitters were mounting there charge.
Eighth-starting Sean Michael immediately moved into the top-five following
the third lap restart with Rahmer (who started 12th) following suit by the
Michael quickly moved past Wells for third as Keen, who was now in second,
tried to put a dent into Whitesel's full second lead as they completed the
eighth lap. Michael was relentless and got around Keen for the runner-up
spot on the ninth lap and then a fourth turn pass of Whitesel to grab the
lead on the ninth go-around.
Rahmer too became energized as he tried to keep pace with the new leader
and passed Whitesel for third on the 11th lap, then Keen for second on the
13th lap as Michael pulled out to a 2.36 second lead.
All the while Dewease, who started 11th, suddenly began to catch everyone's
eye as he too began to mount his charge to the front. Dewease moved into the
top-five by the 11th lap, was in fourth by the 14th lap, third into by the
Michael's lead over Rahmer dwindled to less than a second as they entered
lapped traffic on the 17th lap. By the 18th lap it became a three-car race
as the top-three - Michael, Rahmer, and Dewease - were all nose to tail
The with four laps to go all three drivers turned it up a notch as each
driver took shot at the lead in every turn with Michael hanging on to the
Dewease slipped by Rahmer in the third and fourth turns momentarily for
second on the 23rd lap, only to have Rahmer fight back to regain the
As the fans jumped to there feet sensing a climatic finish, Rahmer moved
back around Dewease and Michael in the following first and second turn with
less than two to go to grab the lead with Dewease following in the
Salfordville racer's tracks into second as the white flag waved.
Rahmer moved to the bottom of the track in the first and second turns to
block Dewease's lane on the final lap, only to slip high n the exit -
opening the door for Dewease.
"When I first caught up to Fred (Rahmer) and Sean (Michael) I didn't know
who was leading...I didn't know if somebody was out ahead of Sean," Said
Dewease. "Our car wasn't real good at the beginning and it takes us a while
to get cranked-up."
"Man this thing came on like a bandit at the end. I could run the bottom
and they were struggling around the top. Our car was just working so good on
the bottom. I got held up there by a lapped car and I thought Fred was going
to get me back. Then he didn't stay on the bottom down in turns one and two
and left it open for me and I got a run on him off the corner and got by
him. All I knew then is that I had to stop making mistakes in three and four
I'd be all right."
Dewease seized the moment and shot under Rahmer to grab the lead and then
raced through the final turns mistake-free to take the checkered 1.29
seconds ahead of Rahmer for his 44th career Williams Grove win - moving him
into a tie for with Rahmer for second-place on the all-time Grove win list.
"We were all right there together and I thought I had a chance," said
Dewease. "It was just a matter of who got messed up in lapped cars...I
messed up in three and four and let Fred get a good run by me."
"I pulled in behind him and he dove down to the bottom (in the first and
second turns) to try and block the slider. He didn't stay down there and all
I did was park it on the bottom...and this thing was driving up off the
corners like a bandit."
Dewease's win was his third overall in 410 competition this season and was
Following Rahmer at the checkered was Michael in third, and 13th starting
Todd Shaffer in fourth, and Dave Ely in fifth.
"I'm just fortunate to have the crew, sponsors, and owners I have. We've
been fast all year. We've just been having some dumb things
happening...hopefully we'll get that over with.
"The crew did an excellent job, American Racer Tires, J&J Chassis, Don Ott
Motors, Top Flight Wings, Hanks Performance Products, Acco Racing Shocks,
Weld Racing Products and Wheels...this list just goes on and on."
Completing the top-10 were Cris Eash (who 9th), Keen, Donnie Kreitz Jr.
(Who started 10th), Len Thompson (who started 17th), and 19th starting Keith
"It still a long year," Dewease added. "Every race means a lot but it's a
long year and the big thing is you can't have no problems, wrecks, or
Heats for the 30 super sprints on hand were won by Mark Smith, Lafferty,
and Keen, with Kauffman winning the consolation.
Smith's winning time of two minutes 54.45 seconds set a new 10 lap track
record. Smith eclipsed the three year old record of two minutes 55.67
seconds that was set by Lance Dewease in August of 1997.
Second generation racer Billy Dietrich of Aspers passed Rusty Pressley with
three laps to go to take the lead and then pulled away over the final two
laps to pick up his first career Williams Grove victory in the 20 lap 358
Dietrich, who started seventh with his sidelined father Dan Dietrich
looking on from the pits, quietly moved into third at the half-way mark and
then into second with five laps to go.
Pressley, who had taken the lead from polesitter Mike Miller on the second
lap, had opened up a comfortable lead by that point and looked to be the
But a caution with three laps to go for the stopped sprinter of Billy
Albright allowed Dietrich to close on the leaders bumper.
Dietrich didn't waste the opportunity as his slid under and then up in
front of Pressley for in the third and fourth turns to grab the lead at the
completion of the 17th lap.
From there Dietrich easily pulled away to take the checkered 2.27 second
ahead Pressley for the win. Billy Johns finished third, Dale Hammaker
fourth, and a hard-charging T.J. Stutts fifth after starting 17th.
Completing the top-10 were Duaine Smith, Chad Layton, Kevin Drury, Scott
Ausherman, and Kevin Welsh.
Heats for the 41 "358" sprints on hand were won by Pressley, Miller, Joe
Ilg, and Johns. Twin consolations were won by Stutts and Eric Stambaugh.
Friday - April 20, 2001
WILLIAMS GROVE SPEEDWAY
Feature (25 Laps) - 1. 88H-Lance Dewease ($3,000); 2. 77-Fred Rahmer; 3.
1-Sean Michael; 4. 88-Todd Shaffer; 5. 29-Dave Ely; 6. 17-Cris Eash; 7.
53-Shawn Keen; 8. 69-Donnie Kreitz Jr.; 9. 10-Len Thompson; 10. 7-Keith
Kauffman; 11. 12-Greg Hodnett; 12. 17B-Troy Whitesel; 13. 10N-Chris Knopp;
14. 6W-Josh Wells; 15. 30-Darren Eash; 16. 7M-Todd Hestor; 17. 22M-Mark
Smith; 18. 37-Shawn Stidfole; 19. 0-Rick Lafferty; 20. 07-Cliff Brian; 21.
32-Brook Weibley; 22. 22-James Chesson; 23. 76-P.J. Chesson; 24. 2S-Kyle
Sauder. No Time
Lap Leaders - Josh Wells (1-3), Troy Whitesel (4-9), Sean Michael (10-23),
Fred Rahmer (24), Lance Dewease (25)
1st Heat (10 Laps/6 to qualify) - 1. 22M-Mark Smith; 2. 69-Donnie Kreitz
Jr.; 3. 17B-Troy Whitesel; 4. 6W-Josh Wells; 5. 88-Todd Shaffer; 6. 7M-Todd
Hestor; 7. 7-Keith Kauffman; 8. 12-Greg Hodnett; 9. 10C-Jeremy Campbell; 10.
25-Kyle Sauder. Time - 2:54.45 (New 10-Lap Track Record - old record was
2:55.67 set by Lance Dewease on 8/22/97)
2nd Heat (10 Laps/6 to qualify) - 1. 0-Rick Lafferty; 2. 1-Sean Michael; 3.
88H-Lance Dewease; 4. 30-Darren Eash; 5. 76-P.J. Chesson; 6. 10-Len
Thompson; 7. 32-Brook Weibley; 8. 37-Shawn Stidfole; 9. E7-Lynton Jeffrey;
10. 85-Mike Dillman. Time - 2:56.15
3rd Heat (10 Laps/6 to qualify) - 1. 53-Shawn Keen; 2. 29-Dave Ely; 3.
17-Cris Eash; 4. 77-Fred Rahmer; 5. 22-James Chesson; 6. 07-Cliff Brian; 7.
10N-Chris Knopp; 8. 461-Curt Michael; 9. 51-Kasey Kahne; 10. 49-Mike Walter.
Time - 2:57.41
Consolation (10 Laps/6 to qualify) - 1. 7-Keith Kauffman; 2. 12-Greg
Hodnett; 3. 10N-Chris Knopp; 4. 32-Brook Weibley; 5. 2S-Kyle Sauder; 6.
37-Shawn Stidfole; 7. E7-Lynton Jeffrey; 8. 85-Mike Dillman; 9. 49-Mike
Walter; 10. 461-Curt Michael; 11. 10C-Jeremy Campbell; 12. 51-Kasey Kahne.
Feature (20 Laps) - 1. 8D-Billy Dietrich; 2. 5-Rusty Pressley; 3. 2J-Billy
Johns; 4. 66H-Dale Hammaker; 5. 11T-T.J. Stutts; 6. 11S-Duaine Smith; 7.
U1-Chad Layton; 8. 31D-Kevin Drury; 9. 88-Scott Ausherman; 10. 18W-Kevin
Welsh; 11. 4-Eric Stambaugh; 12. 55E-Brian Eichelberger; 13. 56-Nate Snyder;
14. 22J-Joe Ilg; 15. 80R-Dan Richcreek; 16. 1K-Mike Miller; 17. 33-Billy
Albright; 18. 4B-Jake Raudabaugh; 19. 51-Gary Gollub; 20. 11C-Cory Haas; 21.
56V-Tim Hershey; 22. 57J-Jeremy Gardner; 23. 50-Mark Richard; 24. 71-Joe
Whitcomb. No Time
Lap Leaders - Mike Miller (1-2), Rusty Pressley (3-16), Billy Dietrich
1st Heat (8 Laps/6 to qualify) - 1. 5-Rusty Pressley; 2. 8D-Billy Dietrich;
3. 51-Gary Gollub; 4. 57J-Jeremy Gardner; 5. 11T-T.J. Stutts; 6. 8-Rich
Eichelberger; 7. 4B-Jake Raudabaugh; 8. 2-Denny Gross; 9. 22-Dean Kline; 10.
27-Ron Kramer; DNS - 9-Bill Heltzel Jr.. Time - 2:34.16
2nd Heat (8 Laps/4 to qualify) - 1. 1K-Mike Miller; 2. 88-Scott Ausherman;
3. 66H-Dale Hammaker; 4. 80R-Dan Richcreek; 5. 18W-Kevin Welsh; 6. 87-Alan
Krimes; 7. 56V-Tim Hershey; 8. 38-Buzz Wilson; 9. 21-Adrian Shaffer; 10.
18-Brian Marriott. No Time
3rd Heat (8 Laps/4 to qualify) - 1. 22J-Joe Ilg; 2. 11S-Duaine Smith; 3.
11C-Cory Haas; 4. 56-Nate Snyder; 5. 4-Eric Stambaugh; 6. U1-Chad Layton; 7.
33-Billy Albright; 8. 119-Greg Leiby; 9. 3J-Judd Shepard; DNS - 17M-Mike
Creaghan. No Time
4th Heat (8 Laps/4 to qualify) - 1. 2J-Billy Johns; 2. 71-Joe Whitcomb; 3.
55E-Brian Eichelberger; 4. 50-Mark Richard; 5. 31D-Kevin Drury; 6. 1M-Babe
Mader; 7. 17G-Denny Garl; 8. 15-Tracy Templin; 9. 80-Todd Reed; 10. 7C-Chad
Trout. No Time
1st Consolation (8 Laps/4 to qualify) - 1. 11T-T.J. Stutts; 2. 18W-Kevin
Welsh; 3. 56V-Tim Hershey; 4. 4B-Jake Raudabaugh; 5. 8-Rich Eichelberger; 6.
2-Denny Gross; 7. 18-Brian Marriott; 8. 22K-Dean Kline; 9. 9-Bill Heltzel;
10. 87-Alan Krimes; DNS - 38-Buzz Wilson, 21-Adrian Shaffer, 27-Ron Kramer.
2nd Consolation (8 Laps/4 to qualify) - 1. 4-Eric Stambaugh; 2. 31D-Kevin
Drury; 3. U1-Chad Layton; 4. 33-Billy Albright; 5. 17G-Denny Garl; 6.
1M-Babe Mader; 7. 3J-Judd Shepard; 8. 80-Todd Reed; 9. 15-Tracy Templin; 10.
119-Greg Leiby; DNS - 7C-Chad Trout. No Time