By Bill W
April 17, 2017 – To say Sam Hafertepe Jr. and the Keith Dobbs #15H team are on a roll is an understatement! The Sunnyvale, Texas native won his fifth Lucas Oil ASCS National Series feature in a row last Saturday at the Missouri State Fair Speedway in Sedalia. The win set a new record to start a season for ASCS and tied the all-time record, set by Hall of Famer Gary Wright back in 2005. Weather pending, Sam hopes to compete in the Park City Cup/Air Capital Shoout at 81 Speedway near Wichita, Kansas this Friday and Saturday.
Sam would start sixth in his heat. “The track was pretty good,” he says of the day-time surface. “There wasn’t a lot of passing in the other heats, and we were a little worried,” he says. “Our car was just really good though. We were able to get through the middle of three and four, where other drivers had to go up top or right on the bottom. That allowed us to get by those guys.”
At that point, he was in second. “We ran down (Justin) Henderson for the lead,” says Sam. “We were probably a lap short of getting by him. We just had a really good car at that point. We were just better than anyone in three and four. That was really the story of the night.”
The run was enough for Sam to make the redraw, in which he drew a feature starting spot outside of row two. “We were able to get a heck of a jump on the first start and got up to second right away,” he says. “The caution came out though, and everyone knew my strategy on that one. We fell back to fifth and we were really tight.”
It took some time to move back through the pack. “We had to cycle some laps out there, and we finally got to fourth,” says Sam. “The caution came out on lap eight. We were able to slide in front of (Blake) Hahn there in one and two. We got a good run through there and slid (Jonathan) Cornell for second in three and four. That allowed us to get into second behind Johnny (Herrera).”
Sam and Johnny put on a slide fest for the lead! “We tracked him slowly for a few laps there,” says Sam. “We finally made the pass when we got to traffic. Once we made that pass, we had a caution a few laps later. On the restart, he got a really good run and slid me in one and two. We traded slide jobs for two or three corners. We were finally able to get by him and hang on to the win.”
Inevitably when someone is on a roll like Sam’s, there are cries of cheating. It goes with the territory. “There are some people talking about that,” he says. “We just take it with a grain of salt. I guess if you’re going well, you have to be cheating. It’s kind of a compliment really. That means you’re doing something right. We’ll keep going the way we have been. Everything has been checked on our car. I don’t know what else there is to check! Someone said that usually it’s the people that are cheating that are wondering why they’re getting beat. Maybe that’s the case. We don’t worry too much about that stuff.”
|Sam Hafertepe Jr. | 410 and 360 Sprint Car Driver of …
Sam Hafertepe Jr. – Historic Roll Continues in Fort Worth! (Bill W) April 10, 2017 – Sam Hafertepe Jr. and the Keith Dobbs #15H sprint car team are officially in …
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Sam would like to thank Highway 79 Collision Center, the Sparks Family, Kiebler & Sons Lawn and Landscaping, Keizer Aluminum Wheels, Champion Oil, NAPA Auto Parts of Franklin and Sherwin Williams, FK Rod Ends, 21R Youth Racing League, Huggins Cams, CP Carrillo, Callie’s, Vortex Wings, Simpson Racing Products, Kinsler Injection, Barnes Oil Systems, DMI, Fisher Racing Engines, Moose Blocks, J&J Auto Racing, KSE, Smiley’s Racing Products, Hoosier Tire, Brown & Miller Racing Solutions.