LEHIGHTON, PA — Once again Kris Graver topped the Modified field at Mahoning Valley Speedway, winning for a third straight weekend and with this score came a bonus as he becomes the new point leader.
After prevailing in the first of Twin 50 lap features on June 21, Graver has parked in Victory Lane every week since. Along with his three Modified conquests is a SpeedSTR victory on June 29.
In this, his third Modified success run of the year, arguably it was his toughest as a very thrilling feature took place. Graver battled with early leader Brian Romig until six laps to go. That’s when he went to Romig’s outside and took control. He then had to retain Nevin George at the finish.
“Wow! I guess you could say this has been my month. It would be awesome if I could keep doing this but it’s getting tougher and tougher,” said Graver, who won $1800 for his effort.
“It’s only halfway into the season and it’s way too early to be worrying about points. I’m more focused on bringing the car home in one piece and collecting the money, that’s what we need the most.”
Chip Santee led for the first three laps then Romig made a pass for the lead and was looking to notch his career first win at the track. As he led, the opposition on his rear tail was as fierce as could be, with Santee, Kyle Strohl, George and Graver all packed together.
That was pretty much the tone for the race, close tight action, and for the second half it became even more intensified. Romig was clinging to the lead while Strohl and Graver went two-wide for second. Then George got into the thick of things. Four cars with 10 laps to go and anyone’s guess as to who would win.
With six to go Graver stepped it up and throttled by Romig for the lead. With four laps remaining George did the same and then hung on his rear bumper right to the finish.
“I really had to work hard for it tonight. Everyone really ran strong. Brian (Romig) ran me very clean as did everyone,” said Graver.
Strohl came in third while Romig had a season high fourth. Lou Strohl completed the top five
For Frankie Althouse, getting to the lead was one thing as he raced hard with Jeremy Miller. However, once in front it was no contest as he went on to a dominating Late Model win by nearly four seconds.
Althouse charged into the top spot on lap eight and then gradually pulled away for his third win of 2014.
Point leader Earl Paules was in a close battle with Miller and Mike Sweeney to the finish. It was the eighth straight top two run for Paules.
After failing to qualify the previous week, Gene Bowers rebounded back for a hard fought Street Stock win over Justin Mooney.
Bowers had the lead from lap five and was way ahead of the pack until a caution with nine to go waved. With the field bunched up behind him and Josh Mooney alongside, Bowers now had his work cut out.
After the restart it was Mooney’s brother, Justin, who would give Bowers a run for his money. The two fought nose to tail the rest of the way with Bowers just holding on for the close victory, his second of the season.
Reigning Dirt Mod champ Jeff Parker won on April 19 of this year but since then had suffered some very tough luck including two hard crashes, the later had sidelined him for a few weeks.
However, that was all put behind him when he crushed the field in an untouchable run that not only saw him cruise to victory but set a new class lap record in the process of 10.265-seconds.
JP Curry and Kevin Graver Jr., ran second and third but had nothing for Parker, who led every lap en route to 11thcareer win.
Dave Chapman crossed the finish line first in the Pro 4 feature but what would have been his second feature was negated after he failed post-race inspection.
Leading from the outset, Chapman was holding his own until point leader Nick Baer zeroed in on him with five laps to go and stayed glued to the checkered flag. The win was awarded to Baer, his fifth of the year.
Making his first start at Mahoning Valley Speedway, Harry O’Neill scored an upset win in the Hobby Stock feature.
O’Neill, who started sixth, joined with the front two of Shayne Geist and Corey Edelman on lap seven. The next time by Edelman dropped out and from there to the finish it was a riveting battle between Geist and O’Neill. With two laps to go O’Neill grabbed the lead and went on to the popular win.
For a second straight time this season Randy Ahner Jr., was the star of Small Car Enduro in a race that went 200 laps over a one hour period.
Mahoning Valley Speedway Unofficial Results – July 12, 2014
Modified Feature Finish (35 Laps): 1. Kris Graver, 2. Nevin George, 3. Kyle Strohl, 4. Brian Romig, 5. Lou Strohl, 6. Eric Beers, 7. Todd Baer, 8. Chip Santee, 9. Scott Meckes, 10. Kevin Rex Jr., 11. Brandon Oltra, 12. Bobby Jones, 13. Earl Paules, 14. Roger Coss, 15. Don Wagner, 16. Todd Geist, 17. Joe Mooney
Late Model Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Frankie Althouse, 2. Earl Paules, 3. Jeremy Miller, 4. George Ramos, 5. Mike Sweeney, 6. Jacob Nemeth, 7. Danielle Paules, 8. Rick Reichenbach, 9. Jacob Kerstetter, 10. Geno Steigerwalt, 11. Paul Koehler Jr.
Street Stock Feature Finish (30 Laps): 1. Gene Bowers, 2. Justin Mooney, 3. Steven Steigerwalt, 4. Josh Mooney, 5. Zach Graver, 6. TJ Gursky, 7. Randy Ahner Jr., 8. Jamie Smith, 9. Jason Kuhn, 10. Jillian Long, 11. George Ramos, 12. Jonathan Tracey, 13. Stacey Brown, 14. Dan Freundt, 15. Tiff Wambold, 16. Dave Chapman, 17. Todd Ahner, 18. Lonnie Behler Sr., 19. Lonnie Behler Sr., 20. Matt Wentz, 21. Chip Wanamaker, 22. Jared Ahner DNQ: Dan Freundt, Aaron Kromer, Logan Boyer, Dave Imler, DJ Wagner
Dirt Modified Feature Finish (25 Laps): 1. Jeff Parker, 2. JP Curry, 3. Kevin Graver Jr., 4. Aleia Geisler, 5. Mike Stofflet, 6. Ricky Yetter, 7. Ray Deemer, 8. Billy Lowden Jr., 9. Jack Ely, 10. Joe Stangle, 11. Blaine Sadler, 12. Billy Lasko
Pro 4 Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Dave Chapman, 2. Nick Baer, 3. Jake Kibler, 4. Cody Kohler, 5. Jason Muffley, 6. Chad Miller, 7. Kailyn Beers, 8. Jesse Snyder DNS: Tyler Stangle
Hobby Stock Feature Finish (20 Laps): 1. Harry O’Neill, 2. Shayne Geist, 3. Alton Snyder Jr., 4. Tim Oswald, 5. Devin Gibson, 6. Bill Verwys, 7. Corey Edelman, 8. Cody Geist
-Mahoning Valley Speedway Press Release