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The Young Lions Roared On Saturday Night At Lanco

Kyle Hehnly registered his first victory of the season in the 125cc main event, while second-year driver Anthony Yerger notched the first feature win of his career in the 25-lapper for the Sportsman Class. And Kenny Miller III, in just his second full season of Micro-Sprint competition, captured his fourth win of 2014 in the main event for the 250cc Four-Stroke Micros.

And then it rained, just as the 600cc feature pulled onto the track. The moisture fell slowly at first, but picked up in intensity as the 600’s were sent back to the pit area. A check of the radar determined the precipitation would be quite lengthy in duration, so the decision was made to postpone the remainder of the program until August 9. The 600cc and 270cc features will be made up on that date; they will be the first races on that night’s agenda.

Hickory Run Campground and Mongoose Chassis sponsored Saturday’s abbreviated program and Blue Ridge Cable Channel 11 was on hand to record the action.

Kyle Hehnly, from Stevens, Pa., darted from his pole position starting spot to lead the 125cc field around the smooth and tacky banked oval. Behind the leader, rookie William Manotti, Chase Gutshall, Dave Grube, and Jesse Maurer diced for position in the early stages of the 25-lapper.

Grube, a three-time winner this year, moved into third place on the eighth trip around the clay, then wrestled the runner-up spot from Manotti at the halfway point. Maurer grabbed third on a restart with nine to go, and the top three were never very far apart during the final one-third of the event.

Hehnly saw the nose of Grube’s No. 3D on a couple of late race restarts, but Kyle had a ton of momentum coming off the corners as he kept his Zortman Erosion Control No. 19 wound up in the high groove. He would pull out in front of Grube on the straightaways, only to see the Denver, Pa. wheel-twister fight back on the bottom at both ends of the speedway.

When the checkered flag fell to conclude the Mongoose Chassis 125cc main, it was K. Hehnly scoring his first win of the season over Grube, with Maurer settling for third. Richie Hartman drove Chip Geib’s Four-Stroke machine to a fourth-place finish, and Gutshall, another of Lanco’s “Young Guns”, completed the top five.

Maurer earned the Weld Racing Fast Lap of the Feature Award by turning the single quickest trip around the oval at 11/682-seconds.

Heat races for the 18 car field went to K. Hehnly and Maurer.

Last year’s Sportsman division Rookie of the Year, Anthony Yerger, has come close to recording that elusive first win on several occasions in his short career. On Saturday night, he left no doubt as to who had the best car in the Hickory Run Campground 25-lapper for the Sportsman Micros.

Ava Bellinger shot out to the early lead from her inside front row starting spot. Opening night winner and former Sportsman Champion Ken Miller moved in to challenge Bellinger, but Miller was soon under attack from rookie John Davis. And it wasn’t long before the fourth-starting Yerger made it known that he would be a force to reckon with in this main event.

Yerger blasted by Davis and Miller to run second just before a yellow flag slowed the pace with six circuits complete. Two revolutions later, Yerger simply powered around the outside of Bellinger in turn two, taking a lead that he would not relinquish.

As Yerger rocketed into another area code, a spirited battle took place for positions two through six among Bellinger, Davis, Patrick Kirn, Sami Schenck, and Mike Rutherford. Davis and Kirn eventually worked their way past Bellinger to run second and third with three laps remaining, but race leader Yerger had checked out many laps earlier.

At the finish, it was Yerger cashing in for his first career win, crossing the stripe by a whopping 2.5-seconds over Davis, who notched his best Lanco effort with a runner-up effort. Kirn was an impressive third, and Schenck continued her amazing string of top fives by passing Bellinger for fourth on the final tour.

The Sportsman car count continues to increase, with a field of 27 entering Saturday’s race meet. Kirn, Schenck, and Rutherford were victorious in the qualifying heats, and point leader Curtis R. Miller won the consolation.

Kenny Miller III and Dave Ravel have split the last six victories in the 250cc Four-Stroke Class. On Saturday night, it was Miller’s turn once again, and the Birdsboro teen charged to his fourth triumph of the season in the Mongoose Chassis/ Hickory Run Campground feature race.

Ryan Shupp, the winner on opening night, tried to break up the Miller/Ravel streak, but Shupp had to be satisfied with a second-place payday after leading laps nine through 19. Miller trapped Shupp behind a gaggle of lapped cars on the front chute, where he slipped under Shupp’s No. 15 and snatched the top spot, then cruised to the win by 0.898-seconds.

Ravel wound up third, with Donna Geib and Devin Adams rounding out the top five. Rookie Brian Kramer, who led the first eight circuits, rebounded from a mid-race spin to finish sixth.

Miller and Shupp won heat races for the dozen Four-Strokes who entered the evening’s program.

A 31-car field of 270cc racers competed in three heats, with victories going to Cameron Bellinger, Heath Hehnly, and Jesse Maurer. Mike Uhrich won the last-chance consolation race.

Steve Whary, Heath Hehnly, and Brett Cronrath notched wins in the 600cc qualifying heats. Taylor Troxel won the consi, as 26 of the 600cc Micros signed in for action.

This Saturday, July 26, is the Grandaddy of all Lanco events, the annual Clyde Martin Memorial Race. A total purse of $12,000 has been designated for the Memorial, which is presented by Gold Rush Trailer Sales. In addition to the big money, each feature race – a season long 35 laps – will offer double points to the drivers who take the green.

Only Lanco members who have entered at least half of this year’s point-paying events (the magic number is five) are eligible to compete in the Clyde Martin Memorial Race, as the Lanco club rewards its loyal members with a large payout and possible championship altering double points.

Gates open at 3:30 on Saturday, with warm-ups beginning at 5 p.m. and the first heat race takes the green flag at 6:00.

General admission tickets for adults are just $8.00, with discounts for Senior Citizens and Students. Tickets are priced at $2.00 for youth between the ages of six and 12, while children under six are free. And parking is always free at the Clyde!

Cable 11 returns to capture all the action of the Clyde Martin Memorial Race, but there’s nothing like witnessing the winged warriors of the 600cc, 270cc, 125cc, Sportsman, and 250cc Four-Strokes live and in-person…so you’ve just gotta come out and LIVE the excitement that is Lanco and the Clyde Martin Memorial Race!

125cc Micro-Sprint Feature, 25 laps: 1.Kyle Hehnly, 2.Dave Grube, 3.Jesse Maurer, 4.Richie Hartman, 5.Chase Gutshall, 6.Nick Sweigart, 7.Alexis Sheely, 8.Jas Hehnly, 9.William Manotti V, 10.Brittany Whitesall, 11.Matthew Donley, 12.Darren Miller, 13.Brie Weiler, 14.Thomas Kelley, 15.Dylan Adams, 16.James Wampole, 17.Dustin Adams, 18.Walt Wampole.

Sportsman Micro-Sprint Feature, 25 laps: 1.Anthony Yerger, 2.John Davis, 3.Patrick Kirn, 4.Sami Schenck, 5.Ava Bellinger, 6.Mike Rutherford, 7.Ken Miller, 8.Wesley Fasnacht, 9.James Fetterolf, 10.Brandon Bucher, 11: Kerry Lengle, 12.Charles Hellinger, 13.Curtis R. Miller, 14.Brian Becker, 15.Matt Peachy, 16.Dave Kemp, 17.Bobby Shanaman, 18.Stee Smith Sr., 19.Corey Schmuck Jr., 20.Brandon Mundis, 21.Megan Mercado, 22.Jenna Heagy, 23.Jarid Kunkle, 24.Bret Habecker.

250cc Four-Stroke Feature, 25 laps: 1.Kenny Miller III, 2.Ryan Shupp, 3.Dave Ravel, 4.Donna Geib, 5.Devin Adam, 6.Brian Kramer, 7.Jarrett Imler, 8.Kassidy Michael, 9.Ronald Wechter, 10.Lewis Kepple, Jr. 11.Zachary Young, 12.Eddie Nocera.

600cc & 270cc Micro-Sprint Features: Rained Out. Will be made up on Saturday, August 9.