J&J Auto Racing weekly news 2004-04-13
McKENZIE, TN (April 13) - Several J&J Auto Racing teams proved to be too good to beat this past weekend in sprint car action across the country. Ed Lynch, Jr., TJ Stutts, Fred Rahmer, Todd Hestor, Sean Michael and Harold Henderson were all ...
McKENZIE, TN (April 13) - Several J&J Auto Racing teams proved to be too good to beat this past weekend in sprint car action across the country. Ed Lynch, Jr., TJ Stutts, Fred Rahmer, Todd Hestor, Sean Michael and Harold Henderson were all victorious driving J&J Auto Racing sprint cars.
Ed Lynch Jr made it two for two in 2004 at Lernerville Speedway driving his #2L J&J. On lap three, Lynch came from seventh and inherited the lead from leader Ralph Spithaler, when he went to the pits with motor problems. Once in front Lynch's Indy Recycling/Commercial Truck & Trailer/Kistler Engines #2L J&J cruised to his 66th Sprint victory. Chad Hill had a strong run finishing third in his #44 J&J.
TJ Stutts drove Mike Barshinger's #39 J&J to victory lane on Friday night at Trail-Way Speedway. "Those guys don't give you chances to screw up," said TJ Stutts, describing the exciting 20-lap 358 sprint car feature race. Stutts beat and banged with Trail-Way's all-time feature winner Dan Dietrich for the victory.
Stutts made several runs at the lead, and on lap seventeen, he banged hard enough to take the first position, sending Dietrich back to third. Stutts openly admitted to not liking the tight quarters of the 1/3 mile oval, but proved he can win races almost anywhere.
Career win number 124 didn't come any easier than the first 123 for Fred Rahmer at Lincoln Speedway Saturday night. The seven-time Lincoln champ battled for every position before getting his shot at race-long leader Chappy Knaack on the next-to-last lap. He grabbed the lead when Knaack bobbled exiting turn four of lap 24. The two smacked wheels and Knaack gathered it back in to hold on for second as Rahmer drove away to the 1.85-second win. "Starting 11th or 12th is a lot tougher than starting at the front," said Rahmer upon exiting his Miller Brothers Chevrolet/Cadillac/Oldsmobile-Materials Handling Systems-Media Camping Center No.88H J&J in victory lane. "He (Knaack) did a great job...he bobbled in lapped traffic...and I'm sorry about his luck."
"I'll tell you, the car that was probably gonna win the race was the #4, and he got taken out early. He was better than anybody all night long," said Rahmer and recognizing the performance of Eric Stambaugh in his J&J. "He did a real good job, he just came up short."
Doug Esh led the rest of the fellow J&J runners in the field finishing fifth driving the Leach Motorsports #30 J&J. Eric Stambaugh (who came from the back after the ninth-lap spin)finished eighth in the #4 J&J ahead of Becca Anderson (#A18 J&J) and Jeff Busby (#47 J&J).
"Back there in 11th or 12th...Hodnett, Eash, Esh, and I are back there banging each other...the first one through has the best chance of winning," explained Rahmer. "It's a good track, but it favors the guys off the front row right now. I'm just taking too long getting by these guys. I gotta get to the leaders for the win and I'm just taking too long as a driver to do it. I let everybody down last year, and I've gotta step my game up."
PORT ROYAL SPEEDWAY
Todd Hestor won the 25-lap sprint car feature Saturday night at Port Royal (PA) Speedway. Hestor started fifth in the Middleswarth #7 J&J and took the lead in the Middleswarth Potato Chips sprinter on lap 23. The victory was Hestor's first of the season at the Juniata County oval.
"It's a good night for the Middleswarth team," said Hestor following the victory. "I want to thank Dave Middleswarth and the entire Middleswarth family. Also all the guys who work on this car."
Hestor's Middleswarth teammate, Keith Kauffman, finished third in the #7k J&J.
URC - BRIDGEPORT SPEEDWAY
The United Racing Club opened their fifty-seventh season on Saturday night at the "new" Bridgeport Speedway. A big crowd saw the 1997 and 1999 URC Champion Sean Michael conquer a field of thirty-six sprint cars to win driving the Cathy and Pat Palladino #99 J&J sprint car. For Michael, it was his twenty-third career URC victory.
Sean Michael chased early leader Danny Massey until a mid-race caution flag helped close the gap. After chasing Massey for one more lap, he made a bold outside bid to take the lead and successfully accomplished the move to become the new leader on lap eighteen. Michael drove away from the field to score his first win of the season.
Harold Henderson made a late race charge pay off as he claimed the season opener for the O'Reilly SUPR Sprint Cars at Baton Rouge Raceway. In the process, Henderson hauled the biggest payout in the history of the O'Reilly SUPR Sprint Car Series back to Amite , Louisiana , collecting the $1800 first place take.
Henderson started the feature on the inside of row two and settled into fourth in the early going. By lap six Henderson had moved into third and started reeling in the second spot, a task he accomplished on lap 13. Henderson then began to work on leader Butch David. A caution on lap 16 bunched the field, and as the race went back green, Henderson utilized lapped traffic to his advantage and closed in on leader David making the pass for the lead on lap 23 of the 25 lap feature, racing around the outside groove through turns one and two to complete the pass.
Henderson noted that tonight was his first night out in his new J&J car and he was assisted by former SUPR Sprint Car feature winner Michael Dupuy.
Other J&J runners in the field included Terry Vidrine in his #68 J&J, who finished fourth. Lane Whittington #9 J&J finished fifth, and David Kountz finished seventh.
Other solid J&J Auto Racing Performances:
Williams Grove Speedway
Lance Dewease came close to claiming another big win at the Williams Grove Speedway, but came home second in Friday night's Early Bird Championship aboard the Hamilton Motorsports #77 J&J. Three other J&J competitors also finished in the top eight including Keith Kauffman in the Middleswarth #7 J&J (fourth), Fred Rahmer in the Joe Harz Racing #88h J&J (fifth) and Doug Esh driving the Leach Motorsports #30 J&J (eighth).