Mike Knight is the Dick Litz Memorial Winner at Eriez Speedway!
Wright, Watson, Scott, McGuire, and Stull also in Winner’s Circle
By Jay Pees
Hammett, PA, June 2, 2013: Dick Litz was one of the fan favorites at Eriez Speedway from the time the track opened in 1961. Dick competed in the very first event ever held at the track and raced until in his 60. dick holds the distinction of being the oldest man to ever win a Late Model feature at Eriez, in his 60s. Each year the speedway remembers Lotz with a 29 lap even paying $2900 to win. Dick’s number was 29 through most of his career. Mike Knight, Eriez Speedway’s reigning champion, emerged from the 29 lap Memorial for the Jay’s Auto Wrecking Super Late Models as the winner. The race ran non-stop from the drop of the green to the 4-checkered flag finish. In other action Chad Wright took over at the front of the pack on lap five of the Bonnell Collision Center FASTRAK Late Model feature and never looked back, opening a quarter lap lead at the finish. Defending champion Joel Watson came from third to first on a lap three restart and dominated the rest of the E-Mod feature for his first win of the season at Eriez. Ryan Scott dominated the Conway & O’Malley Limited Late Model finale. Scott led flag to flag in the caution free event. Wes Stull won the Kandy’s Gentleman’s Club finale for the Challengers.
Dave Hess Jr started the annual Dick Litz Memorial from the pole position with Rich Gardner alongside. Both drivers are former champions, as was Litz. At the end of one lap the order was Hess, Gardner, and Mike Knight, the defending track champion. Knight was second after four laps but Gardner was staying alongside in the bottom groove. The order at the front was the same at halfway with last week’s winner Greg Oakes fourth and Chub Frank fifth. Three laps past halfway, Frank moved to fourth. With seven to go Knight was right behind Hess and got by at the start of lap 24. At the checkers it was Knight for the $2900 purse, then Hess, Gardner, Frank, and Oakes. The race ran caution-free.
Last week’s winner Scott Gurdak started the Bonnell Collision Center FASTRAK Late Model feature from the pole position but it was Bob Dorman leading the first lap. Before lap two could compete Skip Jackson slammed the back straight wall hard coming out of turn two, necessitating the first caution of the event. Jackson retired to the pit. At five laps into the race third-starting Chad Wright took over the lead from Dorman with Gurdak now back to third and Mike Knight fourth. With four laps remaining Wright had a quarter-lap lead over Dorman. On the final lap Gurdak got by Dorman for second. Third was a side by side finish with Mike Knight getting the spot by inches over Dorman. Points leader Billy Henry was fifth at the line.
Gary Eicher and Chad Carlson, the current points leader, started the Plyler Overhead Door E-Mod feature from the from row with Eicher leading the first lap but Carlson taking over at the end of two. Steve Simon, currently second in points, spun in lap three for caution. At the drop of the green defending champion Joel Watson came from third to the lead by the time the cars were in turn two. At halfway Watson, looking for his first Eriez win of the season, had a half straight lead over Carlson, who spun in turn two of lap eleven, but continued, allowing the race to remain under green. Mike Kinney was now second with week two winner Rich Michael third. At fifteen complete Michael was alongside Kinney and pulled ahead a lap later. When the checkers fell, it was Watson by nearly a quarter lap over Michael and Kinney. Opening night winner Steve Dixon was fourth with Eicher fifth.
Ryan Scott, winner the first two weeks and the current points leader, drove to his third win of the season in the Conway & O’Malley Limited Late Model feature, leading from green to checkers in a race that went green for the distance. Following Scott to the line was Chris McGuire, last week’s winner Dustin Eckman, Dan Maxim, and defending champion Steve Kania.
The Eric Walter Tree and Stump Removal Street Stock feature started with a six-car pile-up before the entire field got to the green flag. Guy Adams, Ron Johnson, Art Edwards, Gary Fisher, Shawn Fawcett, and Eric Reinwald were all involved. Fisher, Johnson, and Fawcett were towed from the track but Fisher was able to rejoin the field before the green again flew. Edwards and Adams were also unable to continue. Lamp led the first lap under green but the 2012 champion, Pat McGuire was at the front by the end of lap two. At the halfway point, last week’s winner Chris Withers had moved to second. At ten laps in week two winner Brandon Groters spun while challenging Withers for position. At the green Mark Thompson took over second and with two to go Eric Ester got by Withers for third. At the finish it was McGuire, Thompson, Ester, Greg Fenno, and Don McGuire. Withers, with a tire losing pressure, slipped all the way to sixth at the finish.
Joe Beach and Wes Stull swapped the lead several times in the opening laps of the Kandy’s Gentleman’s Club Challengers before Stull established himself as the car to beat at lap four. Mike Pohl was second at halfway with last week’s winner Stephen Enlow third. That was the order until the final straight when Beach got back by Enlow. Defending champion Kasey Hammond was fifth.
Jay’s Auto Wrecking Super Late Models:
Feature: Mike Knight, Dave Hess Jr, Rich Gardner, Chub Frank, Greg Oakes, Boom Briggs, Scott Johnson, Darrell Bossard, Andy Boozel, Chris Hackett, Dmon Haught, Scott Gurdak
Bonnell Collision FASTRAK Crate Late Models:
Feature: Chad Wright, Scott Gurdak, Mike Knight, Bob Dorman, Billy Henry, Lauren Longbrake, Bruce Hordusky, Kyle Zimmerman, Matt Latta, Jamie Brown, Jason Reagle, Dustin Waters, Khole Wanzer, Al Brewer, Joe Buccola, Bobby Rohrer, Skip Jackson
Plyler Overhead Door E-Mods:
Feature: Joel Watson, Rich Michael, Mike Kinney, Steve Dixon, Gary Eicher, Russ Dunn, Chad Carlson, John Boyd, Shane Crotty, Steve Simon, John Schenker, Steve Sornberger
Conway and O’Malley Limited Late Models:
Feature: Ryan Scott, Chris McGuire, Dustin Eckman, Dan Maxim, Steve ‘Kid’ Kania, Jake Finnerty, Mike Lozowski, John Cline
Eric Walter’s Tree And Stump Removal Street Stocks:
Feature: Pat McGuire, Mark Thompson, Eric Ester, Greg Fenno, Don McGuire, Chris Withers, John Phelps, Brandon Groters, Andy Faulhaber, Eric Reinwald, Kyle Schreckengost, Elaine Best, Matt Tuzynski, Gary Fisher, Ken Lamp, Joe Rohrer, Shawn Fawcett, Art Edwards, Ron Johnson, Guy Adams
Kandy’s Gentlemen’ Challengers:
Feature: Wes Stull, Mike Pohl, Joe Beach, Stephen Enlow, Kasey Hammond, Tim Fisher, Jessee Phelps, Gary Olson, Tom Cupp, Jason Brightman, Todd Hanlon, Kenny Luma, Kelsey Parker, Eddie Orton, Drew Panko, Leo Hanlon, Zach Downes (DNS), Ryan White (DNS), Holden Heinemann (DNS)