It’s safe to say that there is no one out there better at Orange County Fair Speedway (NY) than Brett “The Jet” Hearn, and he proved that once again on Sunday afternoon by scoring his 11th win in the Eastern States 200.

 

Hearn nearly won everything there was to win at the 5/8-mile Middletown, New York hard clay oval throughout the weekend.  He won the pole for the 200-lap Big Block Modified race, Saturday’s 100-lap 358-Modified race, and of course the main event on Sunday afternoon.

 

“I don’t really know for sure,” Hearn said when asked about why he’s so good at Orange County.  “But I think it’s just because I learned how to race there.  Even though I don’t run there that often very much anymore it still comes back to me fairly quickly.”

 

The Eastern States 200 win is Hearn’s third straight in that race.  It is also his 860th career victory on dirt.  352 of those 860 wins have come in races longer than 50 laps.  Throughout his career, Hearn has become master in extra distance races.

 

“I think it’s my ability to pace myself and run the car only as hard as I need to at times,” Hearn told Speed51.com powered by JEGS.  “Just be able to slow myself down and also be able to go fast when I need to.”

 

Hearn led the first quarter of the race before pitting from the lead under caution near lap 60.  He dropped to mid-pack, but within 10 laps of the lap-70 restart Hearn had already climbed to 16th. Hearn was battling for the lead with Matt Sheppard 40 laps later.

 

“Through his strategy in the pits (Matt) worked himself into the lead,” Hearn said.  “He was going to be tough.  We were fortunate enough to beat him on a restart.”

 

Even though Hearn said Sheppard was his toughest competitor on Sunday, he still said he wasn’t exactly worried about him. The driver he was worried about the most at the time was one of the most successful dirt track racers in the country today.

 

“I was worried more about myself than I was about him,” he said.  “I was worried about tire wear, fuel mileage and stuff like that.  I really wasn’t worried about him too much.”

 

Hearn is seeking his seventh Super DIRTcar Series championship as the series heads to the World Finals at the Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway (NC) on November 7-8.  He entered Sunday’s race in a three-way points battle with Billy Decker and Sheppard.  He trailed Decker by 85 points going into the event.  As a result of his second place finish, Sheppard took over the points lead heading into Charlotte.

 

“I think going into Eastern States we had enough of a deficit where we not only had to perform well but we had to be a little bit lucky too,” he said.  “We came close to being lucky.  We did perform well.  I think going into Charlotte I just need to be on attack-mode and go for the wins and let those guys do what they’ve got to do.”

 

-By Rob Blount, Speed51.com Regional Editor (Long Island, CT and NJ) -Twitter: @RobBlount 

-Feature Photo Credit: Dave Dalesandro

 

Eastern States 200 Results:

Pos. [Start] No. Driver / Hometown (Winnings)

1. [1] 20 Brett Hearn / Sussex, N.J. ($20,000)

2. [43] 9H Matt Sheppard / Waterloo, N.Y. ($8,000)

3. [2] 1H Tim Hindley / Monticello, N.Y. ($4,500)

4. [40] 115 Kenny Tremont, Jr. / West Sand Lake, N.Y. ($3,500)

5. [15] 98H Jimmy Phelps / Balwinsville, N.Y. ($3,000)

6. [22] 14h Jeff Heotzler / Wallkill, N.Y. ($2,000)

7. [13] 91 Billy Decker / Sidney, N.Y. ($1,500)

8. [38] 11 Rich Ricci, Jr. ($1,000)

9. [25] 99L Larry Wight / Altmar, N.Y. ($900)

10. [12] 74F Tim Fuller / Edwards, N.Y. ($800)

11. [39] 21 Clinton Mills / Middletown, N.Y. ($700)

12. [20] 5 Jimmy Horton / Neshanic Station, N.J. ($600)

13. [6] 97 Jerry Higbie / Goshen, N.Y. ($500)

14. [8] 3 Justin Haers / Phelps, N.Y. ($450)

15. [9] 10 Billy VanInwegen / Sparrowbush, N.Y. ($400)

16. [16] 42p Pat Ward / Genoa, N.Y. ($375)

17. [7] 21J Gary Edwards, Jr. / Montgomery, N.Y. ($350)

18. [18] 33 1/3 Tommy Meier / Waldrick, N.J. ($325)

19. [5] 55 Anthony Perrego / Montgomery, N.Y. ($295)

20. [26] 7z Erick Rudolph / Ransomville, N.Y. ($280)

21. [3] 1T Tyler Dippel / Wallkill, N.Y. ($275)

22. [17] 44 Mike Ricci / Tillson, N.Y. ($260)

23. [44] 74M Matt Billings / Brockville, Ontario ($260)

24. [23] 43 Keith Flach / Ravena, N.Y. ($260)

25. [35] 24s Chris Schulz / Holmes, N.Y. ($260)

26. [33] 27J Danny Johnson / Rochester, N.Y. ($260)

27. [14] 4* Tim McCreadie / Watertown, N.Y. ($260)

28. [19] 88 Steve Dodd / Middletown, N.Y. ($260)

29. [11] 19 Chuck McKee / Middletown, N.Y. ($260)

30. [30] 16x Danny Creeden / Middletown, N.Y. ($260)

31. [29] 4R Mike Ruggiero / Walden, N.Y. ($250)

32. [34] 21a Pete Britten / Brisbane, Queensland, Australia ($250)

33. [36] 25 Mike Kolka / Circleville, N.Y. ($250)

34. [10] 57 Donnie Corellis / Averill Park, N.Y. ($250)

35. [28] 99 Ryan Phelps / Fulton, N.Y. ($250)

36. [4] 1F Stewart Friesen / Sprakers, N.Y. ($250)

37. [21] 7s Michael Sabia / Eason, Conn. ($250)

38. [24] 21m Bob McGannon / Garnersville, N.Y. ($250)

39. [41] 53 Ric Hill / Lafayette, N.J. ($250)

40. [42] 8 Rich Scagliotta / Hillsborough, N.J. ($250)

41. [32] 34 Andy Bachetti / Sheffield, Mass. ($250)

42. [27] 41 Jim Davis / Ballston Spa, N.Y. ($250)

43. [37] 87x Paul Gilardi / Pittsfield, Mass. ($250)

44. [31] 673 Gary Tomkins / Clifton Springs, N.Y. ($250)

Hearn Masters Orange County Again, Claims 11th Eastern States 200