MECHANICSBURG, PA – Stevie Smith chased Brian Montieth through lapped traffic for the first 26 laps of the Mitch Smith Memorial Friday night at Williams Grove Speedway. Smith then drove under Montieth in turn three and emerged the leader on lap 27 and would control the final three laps to take home the $10,000 paycheck in the sixth race of Pennsylvania Sprint Car Speedweek.
Montieth and Smith shared the front row for the start of the 30-lap main event and Montieth grabbed the lead off turn two.
“Fred and I talked about it and he said if Montieth gets the lead, just run your groove and get with him and we did and we were able to slide by him,” said Smith. “It was a really good night. These guys are good with the set-ups and they do a really good job with the car. I’m getting more and more confident and it feels really good.” Brent Marks drove by Chad Layton and into third. Montieth was racing around heavy lapped traffic and Smith was able to close.
Montieth momentarily cleared traffic and so did Smith, who was now about 10 car lengths back. Montieth didn’t have clear track very long as he caught traffic again with 10 laps completed. Montieth cleared three lapped cars and had a clear track again on lap 13. Smith and Marks were still caught behind a few lapped cars. Montieth had an open track and then Smith cleared traffic as well. Marks was up to third and Donnie Kreitz moved by Layton and into fourth. Lucas Wolfe also drove by Layton and into the top five.
Montieth continued to hammer the cushion and Smith was checking out the bottom just a few car lengths back in lapped traffic.
Montieth slid by rookie Austin Hogue in turn one and scrubbed some speed. Smith was right there and as they raced into turn three, he was able to slide in front of him and take the lead with 27 laps completed. Smith maintained the lead through the first and second turns and down the backstretch.
Montieth blasted under Smith entering turn three and they traded the lead. Smith led Montieth at the line. Behind the race for the lead was Grove point leader Donnie Kreitz closing in. Very heavy traffic was in front of the leaders, but the first caution flag of the race flew with two laps remaining for Mike Wagner who blew a right rear tire and stopped on the frontstretch. Smith got a good restart and no slider came from Montieth as he and Kreitz went to the bottom.
Smith led under the white flag and rolled right through the middle of the turns. He would score the win as Montieth just held off Kreitz for second. Brent Marks and Lucas Wolfe were in the top five.
“We were too good, too early,” said Montieth. “I knew we were going to be in trouble. The car was really good the first 10 laps. I was trying to get as many lapped cars between us as I could. We should have started with the car tighter.” Greg Hodnett, Cory Haas, Dave Blaney, Chad Layton and Doug Esh completed the top 10.
Wolfe set fast time over the 39-car field with a lap of 16.811 seconds. It was Wolfe’s fourth fast time during Speedweek competition. Kreitz, Layton, Marks and Montieth were the top five qualifiers. The 10-lap heat races were won by Blaney, Haas, S. Smith and Marks. T.J. Stutts won the B-main.
Unofficial Speedweek Points
1. Greg Hodnett 760
2. Lucas Wolfe 712
3. Brent Marks 659
4. Danny Dietrich 649
5. Brian Montieth 559
Sprint Car Feature (30 laps): 1. Stevie Smith. 2. Brian Montieth. 3. Donnie Kreitz. 4. Brent Marks. 5. Lucas Wolfe. 6. Greg Hodnett. 7. Cory Haas. 8. Dave Blaney. 9. Chad Layton. 10. Mark Smith. 11. Doug Esh. 12. Danny Dietrich. 13. T.J. Stutts. 14. Austin Hogue. 15. Pat Cannon. 16. Curt Michael. 17. Adam Wilt. 18. Glenndon Forsythe. 19. Mike Wagner. 20. Austen Wheatley. 21. Curt Stroup. 22. Lance Dewease. 23. Darren Mollenyux. 24. Nicole Bower.
Did Not Qualify: Ryan Bohlke, Gerard McIntyre Jr., Kyle Reinhardt, Steve Buckwalter, Eric Tomecek, Adrian Shaffer, Troy Fraker, Rick Lafferty, Davey Sammons, Alan Krimes, Ryan Smith, Ryan Taylor, Scott Wilson, Tim Glatfelter, Aaron Ott.