The weekly scheduled Friday night races at Spartan fell prey to inclement weather and were cancelled, but the weekend wasn’t a total loss, as the conditions were great for the once a month Sunday evening “Slugfest” series of races. Scheduled on this warm Sunday evening for Round #2 were the Modifieds, Spartan Stocks, Pony Stocks, and capped off with the Enduro Figure 8. Being a special Slugfest show, there were no heats as the fans were treated to 275 laps of feature racing.
First on the track were the Pony Stocks with a pair of 25 lap feature races. In the “A” it was Laura Beckner starting on the pole and leading the early laps, but at the checker, it was déjà vu all over again, as Tyler Heeney continued his domination of the division this year. The young Stockbridge driver won handily over Wayne Beckner Jr.in second & Brian Beckner in third, followed by Brian “Brutus” Boesel, and then Lex Jarecki rounding out the top five.
In the Pony Stock “B”, Jerry King led the first half, but he had Ryan “Flash” Gordon glued to his rear bumper for much of the distance. Ryan was able to power his way past King and scored the first win of his career in his No. 21 Dodge Neon. The versatile Gordon also showed his array of talents as he was also the singer of the National Anthem to start off the night’s activities! Finishing behind Ryan was King with Wayne Parkhurst II in third, and Tim Misner barely edging Robert Jones for fourth. Gordon celebrated his first feature win in the LaFontaine Ford Victory Lane as he was congratulated by his fellow drivers for a job well done.
The longest race of the night was the Modifieds for 75 laps. Starting on the pole was Tony Pastorino with Brad Wyatt on the outside of the front row. Wyatt jumped out into the lead at the start and led the early laps over Jordan Pruitt and Jon McNett. The man on the move was “The Governor” Dan Loughan as he picked them off one by one on his way to the front. On one of the restarts after a yellow, Loughan was able to power his way past Wyatt and grabbed the top spot over Wyatt and Pruitt. While the drivers behind Dan were swapping positions back and forth, Loughan seemed to have the race in command over Pruitt, McNett and Joe Morisette. Pruitt was able to close up on Dan’s rear bumper, but didn’t seem like he was going to find a way past until a late race restart with 5 laps to go gave him one more shot. That was all he needed as the Gaylord, Mich. driver powered his way by on the high side as Pruitt took the win over Loughan, Morisette, McNett, and Travis Eddy. Jim Butler was the fast qualifier.
Next up were the Spartan Stocks for a trio of features. In the 50 lap “A” we had Craig Stephens taking the early lead from the pole and leading for several laps, with Mike Ammerman getting by on Lap 16. Ammerman was never headed after that and led the rest of the way with Joe Barnhart second, Robby Johnston third, Josh Trammell fourth and Lou Stremme coming home in fifth. Remarkably the race was green all the way for the entire distance as Mike ‘The Hammer” Ammerman from Eaton Rapids took his first of the season in his No. 16.
In the 40 lap “B” it was the dueling old school Camaros of Tim Lahar and Jim Miller Jr. at the front with Nick Stremme, Tom Freeman Jr and Travis Ainsworth all battling behind them. Miller, who has many feature wins at Auto City Speedway in Flint, took the win in No. 9 over Lahar, Stremme, Ainsworth and Jason Luce. I really enjoyed getting to see longtime friend Tom Freeman and family for their first time out this season. In the 30 lap “C” we had Flat Rock Speedway regular Troy Brehmer from Toledo earning a win with his no. 42, in his first visit to Spartan, over Pete Shong, Charlie Thom, John McConnell and Tami Hawkins.
Finally we had the wild and crazy Enduro Figure 8. There were a LOT of close encounters at the intersection with many near misses, but right around the halfway point there was a hard broadside collision between two teammates. The crowd got very quiet as Aaron Dancer was carefully removed from his car, but after regaining consciousness he was transported home with his family and later diagnosed with a broken hip. Once the race was resumed, it was Josh DeLong winning in his black No. 067 pickup over Aaron’s uncle ,Danny “AJ” Gaddis.