From Steve Inch
SELINSGROVE, Pa. – Blane Heimbach of Selinsgrove made a pass for the lead
on lap two and went on to win the 25-lap season opener for 358 sprint cars
at Selinsgrove Speedway Saturday night in record time.
The victory marked the 31st of Heimbach’s career at the track behind the
wheel of the Creasy Signs/Goff Racing No. 12. He set a new 25-lap track
record in 7:34.914, eclipsing the former mark by more than 16 seconds.
Heimbach also has a 410 sprint car victory this season in central
Jason Smith of Williamsport made a late-race pass for his first win of the
season in the 15-lap pro stock feature, while Bob Bussey of Northumberland
scored his first career victory in the 12-lap roadrunner race.
Selinsgrove Speedway will present the season’s first four division show
featuring the 358 sprint cars, late models, pro stocks, and roadrunners at
6 p.m. Saturday, April 9. This Wednesday, April 6, the track will hold an
open practice session from 6:30-9 p.m.
Second-place starter Phil Walter powered into the lead at the start of the
sprint car feature. Walter was chased by fourth-place starter Blane
Heimbach for the first lap before Heimbach made the winning pass on the
frontstretch at the completion of the second circuit.
On the fifth lap, sixth-place starter Pat Cannon moved by polesitter Larry
Kelleher for the third position. A lap later, Cannon passed Walter for the
second spot and set his sites on Heimbach. By lap 10, Heimbach and Cannon
began to work their way through slower traffic. At the halfway point,
Heimbach held a half straightaway lead over Cannon.
With five laps remaining, Cannon moved within striking distance only to
have his race car erupt into a cloud of smoke on the 21st circuit. Heimbach
went on to the win the race over Walter, fifth-place starter Jason Shultz,
Kelleher, and seventh-place starter Logan Schuchart.
AJ Hoffman took the lead from his third starting position at the drop of
the green flag in the pro stock feature. Hoffman was trailed by
fourth-place starter Jason Smith and fifth-place starter Nate Kerstetter.
For the duration of the event, Smith raced in Hoffman’s shadow, while each
driver shifted lanes in an attempt to secure the lead and win the race.
With two laps remaining, Smith made the winning pass by Hoffman using the
inside lane in turn three.
At the finish, Smith was victorious by .79 of a second over Hoffman,
Kerstetter, Kyle Bachman, and Dave Brouse Jr.
Second-place starter Bob Bussey drove into the lead at the start of the
roadrunner feature with polesitter and defending champion Ricky Bender in
pursuit. At the halfway point of the race, Bussey held a straightaway lead
over Bender and fourth-place starter Eric Pinkerton. On the eighth circuit,
Pinkerton advanced to second and attempted to close in on Bussey.
The event’s final caution flag unfurled with three laps remaining. On the
restart, Bussey was able to open up a comfortable lead and post a
2.3-second margin of victory over Pinkerton, Bender, Jeff Swanger, and John
SELINSGROVE SPEEDWAY SUMMARY – 2 April 2011
358 Sprint Cars – 18 Entries
25-Lap A-Main: 1) 12 Blane Heimbach (NTR: 7:34.914) 2) 5W Phil Walter 3) 1
Jason Shultz 4) 76 Larry Kelleher 5) 1S Logan Schuchart 6) 4R Davie Franek
7) 94 Ted Thomas 8) 23M TJ Stutts 9) 77 Derek Locke 10) 19C Colby Womer 11)
99K Cody Keller 12) 37 Scott Flammer 13) 56 Nate Snyder 14) 16H Matt Horst
15) 67K Jeff Geiges 16) 81 Bob Beidleman 17) 769 Steven Nederostek 18) 3
Pat Cannon DNF
Heat Winners: Pat Cannon (8 Lap NTR: 2:17.003), Jason Shultz