A ride in dad’s car proved to be the tonic needed for a much needed change of luck for Billy Pauch, Jr.
After he captured two consecutive point titles in the SpeedSTR division at Kutztown’s Action Track USA, Pauch Jr. suffered through a tough season in 2016 SpeedSTR competition. That all changed, however, on Saturday afternoon at the Trail-Way Speedway near Hanover, Pa., as Pauch drove Mike Heffner’s No. 27 to the 30-lap victory for the USAC All Pro SpeedSTRs on Day One of Speedway Entertainment’s Fall Jamboree. The Lelands.com SpeedSTR, owned by Heffner, is normally campaigned by his dad, Billy Pauch Sr., but it was Junior’s turn to steer the car at the Fall Jamboree and he made the most of his opportunity.
Joining the younger Pauch in victory lane on Saturday were Tim Buckwalter (Wingless 600 Sprints), Cody Kline (All Star Slingshots), and Cole Stangle (Junior Slingshots).
Pauch Jr. started on the pole and immediately bolted to a comfortable advantage as Earl Paules and Keith Prutzman wrestled for the runner-up position. The first caution flag waved with eight laps complete and the field realigned for what was about to be a 16-lap green flag run before the next (and final) yellow flag would wave.
On the restart, Tim Buckwalter made his presence known in the top five. Buckwalter, locked in a battle for the National SpeedSTR Point Championship with Canadian Pierre Hebert, started eighth and worked his way up to third as lap 12 was scored. Buckwalter and Paules then engaged in a terrific tussle for second place and they were still fighting for the position when the final yellow appeared on lap 24.
With Pauch Jr. pulling away with seeming ease on both restarts, the crowd focused on the entertaining battle for second between Paules, who found some moisture on the high side in turns three and four, and Buckwalter, who continued to hug the bottom lane. Buckwalter finally cleared Paules for the runner-up spot on lap 25 with Louden Reimert pulling into fourth at the same time.
The race ended with Pauch Jr. winning handily over Buckwalter, who chopped his deficit to Hebert in the point standings as the Canadian driver fell out early with mechanical issues. Hebert placed 20th in the final rundown.
“Great car; it certainly helps to start up front on a daytime surface,” smiled Pauch Jr. in victory lane. “Although the track was pretty good for a day show…it would be awesome to run these cars here at night. But it was a lot of fun driving Mike’s car to the win.”
Paules wound up third in the race with Reimert and Chase Owens rounding out the top five.
Reimert, Owens, and Prutzman were heat race winners. Pauch and Tim Buckwalter were quickest in the Timed Dashes, locking themselves into the feature early in the afternoon.
The 25-lap Wingless 600 Sprint main had Robbie Hocker dart to the early lead while Tim Buckwalter and Kyle Spence fought for second before Spence spun in the first turn with two laps complete.
Buckwalter, driving Barry and Cheryl Greth’s No. 71 Hyper, hounded Hocker for several laps before seizing the chance to grab the top spot on a double-file restart. Lining up outside the race leader, Buckwalter powered ahead of Hocker and took command of the race.
Kyle Lick weaved his way into the top four as the race continued, and he became part of an entertaining three-car tussle for second along with Hocker and Pat Bealer, who started picking off cars one by one as he maneuvered his way toward the front of the pack.
With Buckwalter cruising out front, Lick, Hocker, and Bealer swapped second, third, and fourth numerous times before Lick executed a slide job on Bealer on the final circuit to claim the runner-up position. Hocker also slipped past Bealer as they charged to the checkered.
Buckwalter, who lives in Pottstown, Pa., notched the triumph over Lick, Hocker, Pat Bealer, and his son, Zach Bealer, finished fifth.
Buckwalter and Spence won heat races for the Wingless 600’s.
Cody Kline likes Trail-Way Speedway, and it shows as the Bangor, Pa. driver won for the second time in All Star Slingshot competition. Kline picked up the win in the Slingshot’s first appearance at Trail-Way several years ago, and he added another victory in Saturday’s Fall Jamboree.
Kline shot from the pole to lead all the way in the 20-lap main. Danny Buccafusca and Seth Spayd chased Kline for the entire distance, finishing second and third when Mike Feltenberger waved the checkered flag. After a great side by side battle with his brother, Justin Mills wound up fourth over brother Taylor Mills.
Heat race victories went to Kline and Chris Kurtz.
Cole Stangle passed Gavin Santee for the lead on lap two of the Junior Slingshot feature, then went on to score a half-second win over a fast-closing Tanner VanDoren.
Stangle, from Neshanic Station, NJ, held on for the victory over VanDoren, with Reese Nowatarski finishing third. Kyle Smith and Hunter Lapp, the top two drivers in the Junior Slingshot National standings as the Fall Jamboree began, took Saturday’s checkered flag in fourth and fifth, respectively.
Brayden Schoch and Stangle won the Junior Slingshot heat races.
USAC All Pro SpeedSTR Feature, 30 laps: 1.Billy Pauch Jr., 2.Tim Buckwalter, 3.Earl Paules, 4.Louden Reimert, 5.Chase Owens, 6.Steven Nederostek, 7.Mike Bednar, 8.Brad Brightbill, 9.Jeff Hartman, 10.Frank Yankowski, 11.Keith Prutzman, 12.Tim Iulg, 13.Briggs Danner, 14.Jason Musser, 15.Andy Haus, 16.Brody Adamsky, 17.Kyle Lick, 18.Kevin Hebert, 19.John Bockhorn, 20.Pierre Hebert, 21.Joe Vaccaro, 22.Jay Hartman.
DNS: Jay Garris, Matt Janisch.
Wingless 600 Sprint Feature, 25 laps: 1.Tim Buckwalter, 2.Kyle Lick, 3.Robbie Hocker, 4.Pat Bealer, 5.Zach Bealer, 6.Jack Conover, 7.Jason Swavely, 8.Mikey Smith, 9.Devin Gundrum, 10.Brad Weber, 11.Dylan Norris, 12.Damon Paul, 13.Jacob Severn, 14.Ryan Quackenbush, 15.Bobby Butler, 16.Jesse James Bartleson, 17.Kyle Spence, 18.Jon Smith.
All Star Slingshot Feature, 20 laps: 1.Cody Kline, 2.Danny Buccafusca, 3.Seth Spayd, 4.Justin Mills, 5.Taylor Mills, 6.Brett Bieber, 7.Dylan Hoch, 8.Austin Silfee, 9.Austin Stufflet, 10.Kyle Herve, 11.Anthony Raisner, 12.Joe Toth, 13.Henry Anderson, 14.Alex Yankowski, 15.Chris Kurtz, 16.CJ Fritz, 17.Samantha Muller, 18.Dakota Kohler, 19.Tyler Peet, 20.Don Boonstra.
Junior Slingshot Feature, 15 laps: 1.Cole Stangle, 2.Tanner VanDoren, 3.Reese Nowatarski, 4.Kyle Smith, 5.Hunter Lapp, 6.Tyler Banks, 7.Jared Silfee, 8.Joe Costello, 9.Mike Corbin, 10.Tanner Jones, 11.Joey Vaccaro, 12.Tyler Ulsh, 13.Nicho Flammer, 14.Brayden Schoch, 15.Gavin Santee.
By Barry Angstadt – https://www.facebook.com/barry.angstadt?fref=ts
Photo by : Michael Fry