The Laurel Highlands Sprint Car Series IMCA Race Savor 305’s rolled into the Bedford Speedway on Friday August 18th with beautiful weather making for a great night of racing. Thank You to the 13 teams who competed, a few of our teams are still experiencing mechanical woes and could not compete but overall it was a successful night. The tough luck award has to go to Drew Ritchey of Everett who is always a threat at Bedford, he always does well here and has won many features here however the mechanical gremlin bit Drew in hot laps ending his night before it ever began. Good to see Randy and Peggy Miller in the pits, their #71 driven by Nicole Walker is sorely missed, also good to see Jim Minarchick at the track helping Bob Garvey, Jr. driver of the 11x sprint car and car owner Bob Garvey, Sr. This is Jim’s former car he campaigned with the LHSS which was #15J back then, always great to have our friends support the current teams. Rookie drivers Ray Sheetz and Jim Kosnosky had good runs last night however Jim exited the feature just before it ended with some damage to his 5J. Jim Kennedy had a good run in his heat but exited the feature early with mechanical woes. Bob Garvey, Jr. ran a solid heat race and had a good finish in the feature, the up and coming “rookie class” is very promising, this also includes Matt Kline who is doing a great job every race as well. Steve Kenawell, Jr. has matured into a great sprint car driver and it is a matter of time before he finds that first IMCA Race Saver feature win. All the other teams looked good last night, Scott Lutz battled some issues with his mount but hung in there, Ryan Lynn and Reed Thompson had good fortune for a change, Joe Zap looked strong all night as did Tim Lash who always seems to be consistent and in the hunt at Bedford. Ron Aurand, the Lewistown Wolverine, who had trouble at Bedford during the Joe Csiki Tribute race turned it around last night as Duff and the crew dialed in the 86 giving Ron his second LHSS feature win of 2017 and his second win at Bedford, his first career win came here last year. Here is a recap of the two 8-lap heat races:
Steve Kenawell, Jr. and Jim Kosnosky brought the field to the green with Kenawell grabbing the lead and setting the pace, Ron Aurand who started fourth quickly moved up to second followed by Ryan Lynn and Joe Zap, the leader built up a nice distance from the other cars to take the win. Here is the finish order,
1st Steve Kenawell, Jr., 2nd Ron Aurand, 3rd Ryan Lynn, 4th Joe Zap, 5th Ray Sheetz, 6th Jim Kosnosky, 7th Matt Kline.
Veteran Jim Kennedy and rookie sprint car driver Bob Garvey, Jr. brought the field to the green with Kennedy getting a good jump and taking the lead with Garvey, Tim Lash, Reed Thompson and Scott Lutz giving chase. Lutz who started fifth moved up to third and challenged Garvey for the runner up spot however the young driver maintained his poise holding onto the spot, with Lutz staying right there while Thompson moved into fourth with Lash behind. Missing from this event was Drew Ritchey. The finishing order is as follows,
1st Jim Kennedy, 2nd Bob Garvey, Jr., 3rd Scott Lutz, 4th Reed Thompson, 5th Tim Lash.
For the 20 lap feature the top two drivers from each heat race redrew for their starting spots with Ron Aurand starting on the pole with Jim Kennedy outside, row two had Steve Kenawell, Jr. going third and Bob Garvey, Jr. going fourth. When the green flag waived Aurand got a good start and took off into the lead with Kennedy falling off the pace some as Kenawell, Garvey, Ryan Lynn and Scott Lutz giving chase. It didn’t take Reed Thompson and Joe Zap to settle in the battle however as the laps ticked off the Lewistown Wolverine stretched his lead to a straight away over Kenawell, Lynn, Lutz and Thompson. The rest of the field exchanged positions throughout the event with some good racing and for the second week in a row the 20 lap feature went green to checker. The finish of this exciting is as follows:
1st 86 Ron Aurand, 2nd 17K Steve Kenawell, Jr., 3rd 26 Ryan Lynn, 4th 33 Scott Lutz, 5th R6 Reed Thompson, 6th 11x Bob Garvey, Jr., 7th 12J Tim Lash, 8th 33z Joe Zap, 9th 99 Ray Sheetz, 10th 25K Matt Kline, 11th 5J Jim Kosnosky (DNF), 12th 7 Jim Kennedy (DNF). DNS 880 Drew Ritchey.
A thank you goes out to our loyal volunteer Kalena Lee who is at every race doing multiple chores to help keep our show moving along. The next stop for the LHSS will be Saturday August 26th at the Hesston Speedway which will be another point race towards the Summer Showdown 2017 Championship