HOT RACING HIGHLIGHTS THE ACTION AT BETHEL MOTOR SPEEDWAY
BETHEL, NY – Ed Dachenhausen’s racing career has included many successes, from track championships to a NASCAR Weekly Racing Series Northeast region championship. Recently, he has added a handful of dirt Sportsman wins at Bethel Motor Speedway to his resume, the most recent of which came this past Saturday. Dan Dulin and Paul Knox started on the front row, and Dulin got the early lead but it was short-lived, as 2012 champion Jerry Curry took over the spot on lap two. Defending division champion Bob Morris followed to take second, and Bill Papula claimed third two laps later. Dachenhausen was a man on a mission, though, and he wrestled third from Papula on lap seven. Curry, Morris, and Dachenhausen put on an intense battle for the lead, with Morris and Dachenhausen swapping second several times. Dachenhausen fell back to third, but then used an outside pass to overtake both Morris and Curry on the same lap, putting his car out front at the halfway point. Behind him, Curry and Morris continued to fight side-by-side for the second spot. The remainder of the race was caution-free, and Dachenhausen claimed his third win of the season at Bethel. Curry crossed the line second, and Morris was third.
After a tough few weeks, BMS Modified driver Joe McCarthy rebounded on Saturday night with a win in the 20-lap feature. McCarthy started on the pole, alongside current point leader Wilton Nickerson. Looking for redemption from his recent luck, McCarthy shot out front. Nickerson tried to stay with him, but found himself slowly losing ground. Behind Nickerson, Gary VanOrden Jr., George Rudinas, and John Cote all ran in close quarters contending for third. With eight laps in the books, lapped traffic came into play, and opened up the door for VanOrden Jr. to hold on to third in spite of the challenges. Cote was not about to give up, though, and he overtook VanOrden for the spot with five laps to go. McCarthy was well ahead of the field by the time, and he drove on to his second win of the year. Nickerson was second, and Cote finished third.
There were numerous Legends cars on hand in preparation for next week’s prestigious LegendStock event, and Brendon Bock put the field on notice that he plans to be a force to contend with next week, as he picked up the Pro/Masters win in only his first visit to Bethel this year. Matt Evans and Joe Graf started on the front row, with Evans taking the early lead. With just two laps in the books, 2009 Bethel Legends champion Mike Alcaro took over the lead, shuffling Evans back to second. Dana DiMatteo – also making his first Bethel appearance of the season – worked his way to second on lap four, and then heartbreak struck for Alcaro as he experienced mechanical difficulties and his car came to an abrupt stop of the track, taking him out of the event. DiMatteo inherited the lead as a result, but he had to contend with Richie Coy in second for several laps before Bock, who had started sixth, took over the position. Bock applied pressure to DiMatteo, but it wasn’t until the white flag flew that Bock was able to get by. Bock grabbed the win over DiMatteo and Coy.
In Legends Young Lion/Semi Pro action, rookie Christian Eckes picked up his eighth win of the year. Brad Lowmaster started on the pole, alongside Matt Gaughan. At the drop of the green, Lowmaster took the lead, and 2013 Rookie of the Year Collin Hoeffner grabbed the second spot, with Eckes hot on his heels. Eckes took over second with just two laps in the books, and he wasted little time, as he put his car out front on lap four, as Mike Christopher Jr. came to second. Just past the halfway point, Hoeffner – who was still hanging on to third – got caught up with a lapped car, which resulted in Lowmaster reclaiming the spot. The top three rmained unchanged as the remainder of the race was caution-free, and Eckes was first to the line, followed by Christopher and Lowmaster.
Also picking up their eighth win of the season was Bandolero driver David French, who led all but the first lap on his way to the win. Nicholas Harnage and Eugene Drew made up the front row for the start, and Harnage led the first lap before being overtaken by French. Alex McCollum followed to take over second, setting the stage for exciting racing between French, McCollum, and Harnage as the laps clicked off. In spite of the best efforts of McCollum and Harnage, French was flawless and he proved to be unstoppable. French was first to the line, followed by McCollum and Harnage.
Bryan Chirico picked up his fourth consecutive win in the Beginner Bandolero class. Chirico started on the outside pole, with Jessica Ricci to his inside. When the green flag waved, Ricci took the advantage heading in to turn one, only to find Chirico on her inside exiting turn two. Chirico took over the top spot, and went on to claim the win by a comfortable margin. Ricci finished second.
Pro Stock driver Larry O’Donnell made a last-minute decision to race this past Saturday, and the decision paid off as the 2012 Rookie of the Year found himself in Victory Lane for the first time this year. After arriving at the track late, O’Donnell started the race seventh, with Gene Morton and rookie Greg Cohen on the front row. Morton took over the top spot at the start, and Jim Helt stuck to his bumper to take second. By lap three, however, Kenny Atkins had grabbed second, and O’Donnell laid claim to the third spot. O’Donnell waited patiently as Morton and Atkins traded the top spot. With five laps to go, Atkins pulled to the infield with issues, and O’Donnell found himself in the second spot. Two laps later, O’Donnell powered his way past Morton for the lead, and Sylvester followed suit one lap later to take second. Time ran out for Sylvester, and he had to be content with second as O’Donnell claimed the win. Morton crossed the line third.
Defending division champion Amber VanOrden took home the checkered flag in the Street Stock race for the ninth time this year after coming out on top of an intense battle with her father, multi-time division champion Gary VanOrden. Arthur McArthur started on the pole, with Chris Chirico to his outside. Chirico grabbed the lead on the initial lap, and he remained out front for four laps before G. VanOrden worked his way past. One lap later, A. VanOrden came to second. The younger VanOrden chased and tested her father for seven laps before laying claim to the top spot. G. VanOrden did all he could to challenge his daughter to regain the lead, while also holding off the pressure of Chirico. A. VanOrden was first to cross the line, followed by G. VanOrden. Chirico held on for third.
Defending 4 Cylinder Advanced champion Kyle Welsch also made his way to Victory Lane, taking down his second win of the season in a caution-free event. Jerry Kingeter took off from the pole, with Eddy Lindstadt on the outside pole. Lindstadt got out to the lead, but found himself being pressured by Welsch – who had started fifth – by lap three. Welsch turned up the heat on Lindstadt rather quickly, and he got past for the lead prior to the halfway point. Behind the pair, Kody Welsh and JB Morris battled for third, swapping the spot several times before Morris put himself solidly in the position with two laps to go. On the final lap, Morris shot past Lindstadt for second, only to run out of time to challenge Welsh as he took the checkered flag. Morris finished second, and Lindstadt was third.
This coming Saturday, Bethel Motor Speedway will swing open the gates at 12 noon for the 7th annual LegendStock INEX Asphalt Nationals qualifier. On the schedule are the Legends, Bandoleros, Sportsman, 4 Cylinder Advanced and Novice, and Twin Cam 4 Cylinder divisions. Practice is slated to start at 1 pm. A full schedule for the day’s events will be available later in the week. Grandstand admission is just $6. More information, including a complete 2014 schedule, can be obtained online at www.bethelmotorspeedway.com, or by calling (845) 319-7908.
SPORTSMAN FEATURE FINISH (20 laps): 1. Ed Dachenhausen (Danbury, CT), 2. Jerry Curry, 3. Bob Morris, 4. Bill Papula, 5. Paul Knox, 6. Dan Dulin.
BMS MODIFIED FEATURE FINISH (20 laps): 1. Joe McCarthy (Danbury, CT), 2. Wilton Nickerson, 3. John Cote, 4. Gary VanOrden Jr., 5. George Rudinas Jr., 6. Blair Culhane, 7. Dale Fiske. DNS – Frank James.
LEGENDS PRO/MASTERS FEATURE FINISH (20 laps): 1. Brendon Bock (Franklin Square, NY) (P), 2. Dana DiMatteo (P), 3. Richie Coy (M), 4. Matt Evans (M), 5. Corey DiMatteo (P), 6. Joe Graf (M), 7. Jim Sylvester (M), 8. Matt Maring (P), 9. Mark Foster (P), 10. Mike Alcaro (P).
LEGENDS YOUNG LION/SEMI PRO FEATURE FINISH (20 laps): 1. Christian Eckes (Greenville, NY) (YL), 2. Mike Christopher Jr. (YL), 3. Brad Lowmaster (SP), 4. Joseph Graf Jr. (YL), 5. Alexandria Smith (YL), 6. Dylan Hoffman (SP), 7. Matt Gaughan (SP), 8. Teddy Hodgdon (YL), 9. Courtney Lefcourt (SP), 10. Eugene Drew (SP), 11. Collin Hoeffner (YL), 12. Joe DeGracia (SP), 13. Max Evans (YL), 14. Matt Forsythe (YL), 15. Wayne Hajek (SP), 16. Jerry Sprague (SP).
BANDOLERO FEATURE FINISH (15 laps): 1. David French (Rome, PA) (O), 2. Alex McCollum (O), 3. Nicholas Harnage (O), 4. Kaci Stackhouse (O), 5. Eugene Drew (O), 6. Gillian Kirkpatrick (O).