SELINSGROVE, Pa. – Blane Heimbach of Selinsgrove, a 36-time 358-360 sprint car winner at Selinsgrove Speedway, scored the one victory that has eluded him for nearly a decade: His first career win in a 410 sprint car at Selinsgrove in the track’s 52nd consecutive season opener Sunday afternoon.
Heimbach’s $4,000 victory in the 25-lap feature came from the seventh starting position at the wheel of the Goff Racing/Creasy Signs No. 12.
Lucas Wolfe of Mechanicsburg and JJ Grasso of Pedricktown, N.J., won the eight-lap heat races.
On the initial start of the feature, second-place starter Greg Hodnett powered into the early lead over polesitter Justin Barger. However, a caution flag for 13th-place starter Pat Cannon, who made contact with the second-turn guardrail, regrouped the field for the second attempt to start the race.
When the race resumed, Barger pulled into a solid lead and held Hodnett at bay. Sixth-place starter Chad Layton quickly advanced to third while fourth-place starter JJ Grasso and seventh-place starter Heimbach dueled for the fourth spot.
A close battle unfolded for the third position between Layton and Heimbach as the race drew close to the halfway point. On lap 12, Heimbach powered by Layton for third and began to reel in the leaders. Less than a lap later, misfortune struck Barger as his car developed a flat tire, ending his hopes of an opening day win.
The race stayed under green flag conditions and Hodnett inherited the lead at Barger’s expense. Heimbach quickly reeled in the new pacesetter and then made the winning pass by diving inside of Hodnett entering turn one on the 15th circuit. Three laps later, Hodnett’s car went up in smoke and rolled to a stop in turn two.
On the subsequent restarts, Layton challenged Heimbach for the lead to no avail. At the checkered flag, Heimbach scored an impressive victory by two seconds over Layton, eighth-place starter Mike Erdley, third-place starter Lucas Wolfe, and 16th-place starter Steve Buckwalter.
Justin Barger Dominated The Main Event Until Blowing A Tire Late In The Race
SELINSGROVE SPEEDWAY RACE SUMMARY – 23 March 2014
410 Sprint Cars – 16 Entries
25-Lap A-Main: 1) 12 Blane Heimbach 2) 7M Chad Layton 3) 11 Mike Erdley 4) 1 Lucas Wolfe 5) 17B Steve Buckwalter 6) 89 Robbie Stillwagon 7) 0 Rick Lafferty 8) 63 Chad Kemenah 9) 28F Davey Franek 10) 29 Ryan Wilson 11) 37 JJ Grasso 12) 10H Danny Holtgraver 13) 27 Greg Hodnett 14) 5 Justin Barger 15) 19M Brent Marks 16) 3 Pat Cannon
Heat Winners: Lucas Wolfe, JJ Grasso