Hafertepe Scores $12,000 Victory at Eldora

Sam Hafertepe Jr. (Bob Buffenbarger photo)

By T.J. Buffenbarger

ROSSBURG, Ohio (June 16, 2023) — Sam Hafertepe Jr. put himself in position to take advantage of Rico Abreu’s misfortune in route to winning the Tezos All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobile 1 feature Friday night at Eldora Speedway. Hafertepe, from Sunnyvale, Texas, managed to hold off a late race surge Buddy Kofoid and Brent Marks for the $12,000 top prize with his first career triumph during Ohio Sprint Speedweek.

Hafertepe chased Abreu through traffic and was closing back in when the caution came out that eventually became Abreu’s undoing.

“(Rico’s) misfortune was my fortune. I was just lucky to be in second at that time and to have a decent racecar all night long. At the end there we were kind of fading but I’m sure everybody else was to because the track is going away so much in three and four, I don’t think a lot of guys expected that.”

Hafertepe and Abreu stared on the front row for the 30-lap main event and raced side by side for the lead through the first two corners before Abreu pulled ahead.

Only three laps were completed when Cory Eliason pounded the wall between turns one and two and flipped hard with several cars narrowly missing him. Eliason exited the car under his own power. During the caution flag Kraig Kinser and Chris Windom went to the work area and were able to rejoin the tail of the field.

During the restart Abreu went to the top of the racetrack with Hafertepe running down low. Abreu used his momentum through turns one and two for the lead. Behind them Courtney and Kofoid exchanging sliders for third with Kofoid holding the spot.

Haferepe started to close on Abreu on lap 10 as they approached slower traffic with Kofoid catching the lead duo. Abreu was able to slip through traffic on lap 12 and open his advantage. Furtherback in the field Anthony Macri was able to get by Courtney and started running down Kofoid for third.

The race changed dramatically when the caution appeared for Cale Thomas stopped on the backstretch. J.J. Hickle was also stopped in turn three while Cody Maroske went to the work area with top wing damage. HIckle and Maroske joined the field for the restart while Thomas car was taken off on the wrecker.

During the caution Abreu went to the work area with a flat left rear tire. Abreu was able to make repairs to join the tail of the field.

Hafertepe drove away from the field while Marks, Macri, and Courtney raced third wide for the third position. Marks and Macri shuffled Courtney back as Kofoid tried to keep up with Harertepe, who extended his lead.

Hafertepe was quick to credit his Canadian car owner for standing by him the race team during some tumultuous times the past couple of season.

“I’ve got to thank Miles Hill. He’s stuck by us through tough times,” said Hafertepe. “The last few years we’ve been all over the place and guys leaving to coming and now we got we’ve had these same guys all year. So hopefully this is going get us motivated going forward and you know, just keep on clicking away.”

Hafertepe’s lead quickly started to dissipate over the final five laps with Kofoid and Marks quickly closing. Hafertepe was able to hold on over the closing laps for the victory. Kofoid and Marks rounded out the podium with Macri and Courtney rounding out the top five.

Kofoid set the fastest car in qualifying over the 44 car field as the final car to take time with a lap of 12.900 seconds. Zach Hampton, Courtney, Eliason, Abreu won the five heat race events while Hafertepe won the dash. Mitch Harble won the C-Main event while Thursday night’s winner at Atomic Speedway, Tim Shaffer, won the B-Main event.

Ohio Sprint Speedweek presented by Cometic Gaskets
Tezos All Star Circuit of Champions presented by Mobil 1
Eldora Speedway
Rossburg, Ohio
Friday, June 16, 2023

Hercules Tire Qualifying
1. 55-Michael Kofoid, 12.900[44]
2. 24-Rico Abreu, 12.917[31]
3. 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr, 12.952[5]
4. 39M-Anthony Macri, 12.958[41]
5. 69K-Lance Dewease, 13.019[29]
6. 19M-Brent Marks, 13.035[15]
7. 29-Sye Lynch, 13.059[18]
8. 7BC-Tyler Courtney, 13.084[14]
9. 49X-Cale Thomas, 13.113[34]
10. 35-Zach Hampton, 13.116[4]
11. 13-Justin Peck, 13.116[27]
12. 26-Zeb Wise, 13.120[24]
13. 91-Kyle Reinhardt, 13.125[17]
14. 45-Tim Shaffer, 13.149[13]
15. 5T-Travis Philo, 13.155[39]
16. 11K-Kraig Kinser, 13.163[40]
17. 23-Zeth Sabo, 13.199[37]
18. 2L-Logan Forler, 13.212[6]
19. 11-Cory Eliason, 13.218[20]
20. 4-Chris Windom, 13.223[11]
21. 33W-Cap Henry, 13.235[10]
22. W20-Greg Wilson, 13.251[36]
23. 81-Lee Jacobs, 13.264[22]
24. 1-Nate Dussel, 13.274[2]
25. 15C-Chris Andrews, 13.278[38]
26. 11N-Harli White, 13.287[28]
27. 99-Skylar Gee, 13.300[1]
28. 25R-Jordan Ryan, 13.301[42]
29. 70M-Henry Malcuit, 13.347[21]
30. 32B-Dale Blaney, 13.356[3]
31. 15-Mitch Harble, 13.366[8]
32. 2X-Stuart Brubaker, 13.407[9]
33. 32-Bryce Lucius, 13.416[25]
34. 97-JJ Hickle, 13.419[26]
35. 101-Cody Maroske, 13.445[33]
36. 15K-Creed Kemenah, 13.449[19]
37. 19-Sean Rayhall, 13.450[30]
38. 2-Ricky Peterson, 13.568[43]
39. 28M-Conner Morrell, 13.581[32]
40. 71M-Caden Englehart, 13.600[23]
41. 4S-Tyler Street, 13.608[12]
42. 70-Scotty Thiel, 13.622[35]
43. 46-Michael Bauer, 13.706[7]
44. 7DK-Dylan Kingan, 14.012[16]

Hunt Brothers Pizza Heat Race #1 (8 Laps)
1. 35-Zach Hampton[1]
2. 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr[4]
3. 2L-Logan Forler[2]
4. 99-Skylar Gee[5]
5. 1-Nate Dussel[3]
6. 32B-Dale Blaney[6]
7. 2X-Stuart Brubaker[8]
8. 15-Mitch Harble[7]
9. 46-Michael Bauer[9]

CSI Shocks Heat Race #2 (8 Laps)
1. 7BC-Tyler Courtney[2]
2. 91-Kyle Reinhardt[3]
3. 29-Sye Lynch[1]
4. 19M-Brent Marks[4]
5. 45-Tim Shaffer[5]
6. 33W-Cap Henry[7]
7. 7DK-Dylan Kingan[9]
8. 4-Chris Windom[6]
9. 4S-Tyler Street[8]

All Pro Aluminum Cylinder Heads Heat Race #3 (8 Laps)
1. 11-Cory Eliason[2]
2. 26-Zeb Wise[1]
3. 13-Justin Peck[4]
4. 81-Lee Jacobs[3]
5. 32-Bryce Lucius[6]
6. 97-JJ Hickle[7]
7. 70M-Henry Malcuit[5]
8. 71M-Caden Englehart[9]
9. 15K-Creed Kemenah[8]

Kistler Racing Products Heat Race #4 (8 Laps)
1. 24-Rico Abreu[4]
2. 49X-Cale Thomas[2]
3. 69K-Lance Dewease[1]
4. 101-Cody Maroske[6]
5. W20-Greg Wilson[3]
6. 11N-Harli White[5]
7. 28M-Conner Morrell[8]
8. 19-Sean Rayhall[7]
9. 70-Scotty Thiel[9]

Mobil 1 Heat Race #5 (8 Laps)
1. 39M-Anthony Macri[1]
2. 5T-Travis Philo[2]
3. 55-Michael Kofoid[4]
4. 11K-Kraig Kinser[3]
5. 23-Zeth Sabo[5]
6. 25R-Jordan Ryan[7]
7. 2-Ricky Peterson[8]
8. 15C-Chris Andrews[6]

Elliotts Custom Trailers and Carts Dash (6 Laps)
1. 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr[2]
2. 24-Rico Abreu[6]
3. 55-Michael Kofoid[1]
4. 11-Cory Eliason[5]
5. 7BC-Tyler Courtney[3]
6. 39M-Anthony Macri[9]
7. 19M-Brent Marks[7]
8. 13-Justin Peck[8]
9. 35-Zach Hampton[4]

Computer Man C-Main (6 Laps)
1. 15-Mitch Harble[3]
2. 19-Sean Rayhall[4]
3. 15C-Chris Andrews[2]
4. 15K-Creed Kemenah[6]
5. 46-Michael Bauer[9]
6. 71M-Caden Englehart[5]
DNS: 4-Chris Windom
DNS: 70-Scotty Thiel
DNS: 4S-Tyler Street

Classic Ink USA B-Main (12 Laps)
1. 45-Tim Shaffer[1]
2. 23-Zeth Sabo[2]
3. W20-Greg Wilson[3]
4. 1-Nate Dussel[4]
5. 32-Bryce Lucius[5]
6. 33W-Cap Henry[6]
7. 97-JJ Hickle[10]
8. 32B-Dale Blaney[9]
9. 25R-Jordan Ryan[8]
10. 11N-Harli White[7]
11. 2-Ricky Peterson[13]
12. 70M-Henry Malcuit[11]
13. 2X-Stuart Brubaker[12]
14. 28M-Conner Morrell[14]
15. 19-Sean Rayhall[17]
16. 7DK-Dylan Kingan[15]
17. 15-Mitch Harble[16]

Tezos A-Main (30 Laps)
1. 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr[1]
2. 55-Michael Kofoid[3]
3. 19M-Brent Marks[7]
4. 39M-Anthony Macri[6]
5. 7BC-Tyler Courtney[5]
6. 26-Zeb Wise[11]
7. 13-Justin Peck[8]
8. 24-Rico Abreu[2]
9. 29-Sye Lynch[15]
10. 35-Zach Hampton[9]
11. 5T-Travis Philo[13]
12. 91-Kyle Reinhardt[12]
13. 69K-Lance Dewease[14]
14. 97-JJ Hickle[26]
15. W20-Greg Wilson[23]
16. 23-Zeth Sabo[22]
17. 99-Skylar Gee[19]
18. 2L-Logan Forler[16]
19. 45-Tim Shaffer[21]
20. 81-Lee Jacobs[18]
21. 4-Chris Windom[25]
22. 1-Nate Dussel[24]
23. 49X-Cale Thomas[10]
24. 101-Cody Maroske[20]
25. 11-Cory Eliason[4]
26. 11K-Kraig Kinser[17]