Muskegon, MI – Starting 4th in the feature, Gregg Dalman (Bellevue, MI) knew he had a good shot of winning his 3rd feature at Thunderbird Raceway, “I love these smaller tracks!” he said after the pill draw, just before the feature. Dalman methodically worked his way up to second and took over the lead with 3 laps to go. Andrew Scheid (Sparta, MI) stayed with Dalman the whole race and was in striking distance of his first feature win, when Dalman shut the door on Scheid with 1 lap to go.
Making our only visit of the year to Thunderbird, we had 19 cars in the pits, but only 18 of them were able to hit the track. After getting heat in the motors, our cars rolled out for 3 car, group qualifying. When the last cars rolled off the track, Phil Gressman (Helena, OH) sat on top of all cars as quick quallifier, positing a 11.708 second lap with an average speed of 103 mph.
In the Kistler Engines and Racing Parts Heat 1, Commer Morrel (Bradenton, FL) brought the field around and into turn 4 to the chalk line. Making moves on the top , Dalman and Gressman went 1 and 2 and made the re-draw for the feature. Brad Lamberson (Parma, MI), Morrell, and Jim Girard (Manistee, MI) rounded out the top 5 finishers.
Kyle Poortenga (Woodland, MI) led the field out for the Campbell Performance Heat 2. When the dust settled, Dustin Daggett (Portland, MI) and Scheid secured their spots in tonights redraw. Poorteenga, Josh Shantz (Waterloo, ONT) and Andy Chehoski rounded out the top five.
in the Perfit/Engine Pro Heat 3, Mike Astrauskas (Pierson, MI) brings the last group to the chalk line. Chase Ridenour (Woodland, MI) and Brett Mann (Goshen, IN) made the redraw, finishing first and second respectfully. Garrett Sanders (Lakeville, IN), Michael Summers (Warsaw, IN) and Astrauskas rounded out the top five finishers.
In the redraw, Gressman drew first, drawing a 1, drawing 2nd, Mann drew a 2, Scheid went 3rd, drawing a 3, Dalman drew 4th and drew a 4, Daggett drew a 5 after drawing 5th and Ridenour drew 6th after drawing sixth. Pretty incredible, but that redraw set the front 3 rows in the feature.
Starting in the outside position of the front row, Mann jumps out to the early lead as the whole field safely navigates their first lap of the feature. As Morrell goes into turn 3 in the second lap, another car makes contact with Morrell’s left rear tire, sending him bouncing off the wall, off the top of turn 3 and 4 and flipping up into the catch fence and coming to rest on all fours and facing oncoming traffic. As the red flag comes out, safety crews quickly arrive to Morrell’s car. Morrell is out of the car and banged up with a hurting right knee, but otherwise ok.
Re-firing the cars, the 27 car of Lamberson’s car will not go into gear. Pushing him into the work area, his crew quickly fixes the linkage and Lamberson returns on the tail of lineup. As the field goes green, they quickly knock out 4 more laps when Ridenour takes a bad hop coming out of turn 4 and suddenly loses power and comes to a stop in turn 1. Pushed into the work area, nothing can be found wrong with the car, but after failing to restart, the 11R cars night is over.
As the field goes green, Gressman is able to get around Mann who has been leading the race. Gressman is able to hold the field at bay for the next 17 laps as a caution flag flies for Tank Brakenberry who came to a stop in the bottom of turns 1 and 2 after a passing car makes contact with him.
As Gressman leads the field around in a single file restart, with 3 laps to go, he wheelied coming out of turn 4, turning his car left where he made hard contact with an infield tire, where he spun and hit a second tire, ending his night with a broken front end.
Dalman, the new leader, brings the field around for the final 3 laps. Scheid, Daggett, Lamberson and Mann all push forward trying to reel in Dalman. Scheid, taking a high line, pulls next to Dalman on the front stretch with 2 laps to go and they battle side by side to the white flag, where Dalman is able to slam the door on Scheid going into turn 1 and going on to take the checkered flag for his 3rd feature win of the season.
GLSS will be in action at I-96 Speedway, next Friday, August 16th when the All Star Circuit of Champions make their first visit to Michigan in 3 years.
Thank you to our marketing sponsors, Beacon and Bridge Markets, Addvance Heating & Cooling, Specialty Fuels and Logistics and Hoosier Midwest. Also to our race sponsors, Kistler Engines and Racing Products, Campbell Performance, Perfit/Engine Pro and Engler Machine and Tool.
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GLSS Feature: Thunderbird Raceway
1.Gregg Dalman, 2.Andrew Scheid, 3.Dustin Daggett, 4.Brad Lamberson, 5.Brett Mann, 6.Josh Schantz, 7.Garrett Saunders, 8.Andy Chehowski, 9.Mike Astrauskas, 10.Justin Ward, 11.Kyle Poortenga, 12.Jim Girard, 13.Michael Summers, 14.Rhil Gressman, 15.Tank Brakeenberry, 16.Chase Ridenour, 17.Conner Morrell