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Miley, Watson big winners at Stateline Speedway!

June 2, 2018  |  by Jay Pees

Jared Miley in Victory Lane after winning the “$8,000 Jim Scott Birthday Bash” at Stateline Speedway. (Jimmy Porter Photography)

Jared Miley in Victory Lane after winning the “$8,000 Jim Scott Birthday Bash” at Stateline Speedway. (Jimmy Porter Photography)

Stateline Speedway finally got the 2018 season opener run with the Paula Southwell Memorial, run in memory of the daughter of Butch Southwell, longtime driver currently a top driver in the Rusted Nutz E-Mods and an 80-lap “Birthday Bash” for track owner Jim Scott, himself a former top ranked Overhead Door of Jamestown Super Late Model driver.

At the end of the night it was Pittsburgh’s Jared Miley taking the $8000 check for the Overhead Door of Jamestown Super Late Model win and Joel Watson collecting the $2000 for the Rusted Nutz Garage E-Mod triumph. Other winners included Max Blair in the RUSH Crate Late finale, Dennis Lunger in ProMods, John Boardman in the caution-plagued Street Stocks, and Dillon Speer standing in Victory Lane after winning his first-ever Stateline Challenger feature.

The 30-lap Paula Southwell Memorial was first on the card with Michael Altobelli and Rick Singleton on the front row of the 24-car field, set through five heat races among 39 entrants. Michael Altobelli led lap one with Greg Johnson coming to the lead at lap two and Dennis Lunger following, then in second at the end of three. At eleven laps Lunger got to the lead with Gary Eicher second a lap later. At halfway it was Lunger over Eicher, Johnson, Altobelli, and Michael McGee. Caution flew at lap eighteen when Kyle Bedell and Josh Ferry got together in turn two. At the caution Joel Watson had got all the way to fourth with Altobelli fifth. On the restart contact at the front of the field resulted in Lunger spinning from the lead and Eicher being charged in the incident and sent to the rear. For the restart it was Greg Johnson, Watson, Altobelli, McGee, and John Boyd. The restart was called back after Watson was charged with “jumping” the start and penalized two positions for the restart. Rick Singleton spun on the next attempt. At twenty complete Ferry and Al Brewer spun in turn four. At this green Watson powered by Johnson to take over the lead and begin to open an advantage to half a straight at lap 23. With five laps remaining Watson led Johnson, Altobelli, Carlson, and McGee. Altobelli got to second a lap later but Watson was still powering away. At the checkers it was Watson by a quarter lap over Altobelli, McGee, Johnson, and Carlson.

Joel Watson celebrates in Victory Lane after the Paula Southwell Memorial. (Jimmy Porter Photography)

The Overhead Door of Jamestown Super Late Model feature was billed as “Jim Scott’s 80thBirthday Bash” with an 80 lap finale. Scott, a many time winner at Stateline, and other area tracks, as well as driving in the ACRA series at Daytona, Talledaga, and Texas World Speedway, purchased Stateline Speedway in August, 2015. The eighty lap grind was paced by a car driven by Bob Wearing to a 100 lap win at Stateline in the early 1980s after being displayed in the grandstand area during the evening. Boom Briggs and Jake Finnerty were on the front row of the 25 car field with Alex Ferree grabbing the immediate lead from fourth on the grid over Briggs with Wyatt Scott third at the end of two laps. At five compete Ferree had a near-quarter lap lead over Briggs and Scott, fighting over second. Scott was second at seven laps complete as Ferree was just catching the backmarkers. With Ferree in traffic, Scott began closing the gap. At 25 laps it was Ferree in heavy traffic over Jared Miley, who got by Scott at 24 laps, then Scott, Briggs, and Finnerty. At halfway Ferree was half a straight in front of Miley, Scott, Briggs, and Finnerty. At fifty laps into the grind Miley was only four lengths behind the leader, with both in heavy traffic. At 55 laps Miley was challenging for the front spot but Feree again started pulling away. With twenty to go it was Feree, Miley, Scott, Hess, and Briggs. At sixty-five complete Miley was alongside the leader and got by a lap later. Caution flew with eight laps to go when Doug Eck slowed dramatically in turn one but did not pit. For the Delaware-style restart it was Miley with Ferree, Scott, Hess, and Briggs, filling out the top five. With seven laps left caution again flew when Mike Pegher Jr, Bump Hedman, and Wendall Pinckney all spun. The final three laps were Miley, Ferree, Scott, Hess, and Briggs.

Dave Shagla Jr and Brad Church were the front row for the Street Stock feature with twenty-one Penn-Ohio ProStocks answering the call to race. The field made it to turn three when Luke Rutsky looped his mount, negating the start. Aron Dascomb spun in turn two on the next try, again necessitating a restart. When the race resumed it was Shagla, the 2016 champion leading the way with John Boardman coming to second. Joe Stajnrajh and Guy Adams spun in turn four with three laps complete. Tony Marotto came to third at four complete then Dascomb again spun, this time in turn four at six complete with Boardman leading at the line by .003 seconds! Marotto got to second at seven laps with Mike Moore, a former champion, third at eight laps, the halfway mark. On lap nine Mike Reed got turned into the outside wall in heavy traffic but the field managed to get by without incident. In turn three after green the second and third place cars, Marotto and Moore, got together with both spinning in turn three, moving Bill Applebee into second, Shane Applebee third, Jason Black fourth, and Luke Rutsky fifth. Under green again, Gary Fisher came to a halt in turn three and was towed pitside. Boardman continued to lead after green with Shane Applebee second when six cars piled up when third-running Bill Applebee spun. At lap ten Guy Adams spun down the front straight, ending up in the wall, ending the race as the time limit was reached.

Max Blair and Darrell Bossard started the RUSH Crate Late Model feature on the front row with Blair leading from the drop of green. Bossard, Kyle Zimmerman, Scott Gurdak, and Damian Bidwell were the front five in the early going. Blair continued to stretch his lead to half a straight at the halfway point. Andy Proper slowed to a halt in turn one at twelve complete, slowing the race for the first time. On the front straight at lap seventeen Gurdak spun into the wall, barely making contact but coming to rest facing the wrong direction. Blair again led until Dylan Goodman spun in turn two with three to go. For the green it was Blair, Bossard, Bob Craig, Zimmerman, and Bidwell. Chad Schauers spun in turn four with two to go collecting Chris Peterson and Gurdak. Bidwell stormed to second place at the restart but Blair was off to another win. Bossard wound up third with Zimmerman fourth and Matthew Sipes fifth.

The ProMods were brought to green by Dennis Lunger Jr and Adam Ashcroft with Chad Carlson and Brian Mohawk in row two. Carlson looped it in turn three after contact from Mohawk. After green Lunger again led with Ashcroft second and Mohawk spinning in turn two. At eight laps it was Lunger, Ashcroft, Carlson, Zach Johnson, and Jason Covey. Carlson came to second at green after a yellow for Jarrod Silvis, spun out, then Brian Mohawk and Vaughn Nystrom got together in turn two, both spinning. Carlson and Ashcroft ran side by side for the next laps with Ashcroft again assuming second with eight to go. Lunger went on to the win over Ashcroft, Justin Carlson, Covey, and Chad Carlson.

The final event was the Challengers with twenty-eight cars in the lineup. Dillon Speer led from the green with Chris Knisley second. Chris Horton got bounced around coming out of turn two, coming to rest on the back straight, necessitating a complete restart. Joe Karash came to a stop in the back straight, this time with caution not coming until a lap was complete. At five laps Speer had a half straight lead over Nicole Condron, but Holden Heineman replaced her in second a lap later. Condron spun into the infield at nine laps in just as the yellow flew for Dakota Curry and Rory Houser, spun in turn four. After green, Speer again led, this time to checkers, under constant pressure from Heineman. Brandon Huffman finished third with Knisley fourth and Dylan Greene fifth.

News has been received that two-time NASCAR Champion and championship car owner Tony Stewart will be at the track next Saturday for the first-ever appearance at Stateline of the Tony Stewart’s All Star Circuit of Champions.

Full Results will be published when official.