BECHTELSVILLE, Pa. — The House of Thunder Halloween Party and Grandview Thunder 5-25’s took place on a chilly night at The Grandview Speedway Saturday.
Some 155 cars competed with victories going to Jeff Strunk in the 25-lap modified feature, Art Liedl (URC sprint cars), Steve Buckwalter (ARDC midgets), Kenny Gilmore (sportsman) and Bob Stough (Legends).
The Legend feature opened the Grandview Thunder 5-25’s event. Eventual feature winner Bob Sough took the lead on lap 14 and fought off numerous challenges from Scott Gobrecht and Rick Miller to take the win. Following Sough, Gobrecht and Miller in the top five were Tim Bauer and Greg Bard.
The ARDC midget feature was on tap next and a field of 25 cars answered the call. A wild 14-car crash took place as the field was exiting turn two. No driver injuries were reported and feature restarted with Brett Winner taking lead.
One lap later, Tim Buckwalter took the lead with Winner going back on top on lap four. One lap later, Steve Buckwalter was the man on point and appeared to have the solid control of the race.
By lap 11, youthful Trevor Kobylarz set up a challenge for the lead. At one point Kobylarz nosed to the front by Buckwalter powered back into the lead spot.
The highly competitive ARDC feature went on with Dave Shirk in the hunt as well as Tim Buckwalter. Steve Buckwalter, still unable to shake Kobylarz had his hands full at the front of the pack. In the closing stages, Buckwalter held off Kobylarz to take the win with Dave Shirk third, Tim Buckwalter fourth and Nick Wean fifth.
In the 25-lap sportsman feature, Guy Germano led the first three laps with Paul Kline taking point on lap four. As the field passed for the halfway sign, Kline remained the leader with Kenny Gilmore now in the hunt. Craig Whitmoyer joined the battled and led the feature for one lap with Gilmore regaining the lead. For the final laps, Kenny Gilmore continued to fight off Paul Kline in chase of the win. At the checkered flag, Gilmore took the win over Kline, Craig Whitmoyer, Brian Hirthler and Jared Umbenhauer.
With the roar of the powerful modifieds the green flag fell to start the 25-lap feature and Jeff Strunk on point. By virtue of the “revenge redraw” Strunk started on the pole and wasted no time in setting a commanding lead. In the battle for second, Kyle Weiss now had to contend with Duane Howard who started ninth.
By lap nine, Howard was second and on a mission to chase down the leader. Just a few laps later, Craig VonDohren was in the picture and also challenging for the runner-up spot. At the halfway point of the race, Strunk, Howard and VonDohren were the top three followed by Weiss and Ryan Grim.
Slower traffic was going to be a factor as Howard was closing in on Strunk and at the same time, VonDohren was making ground on the leaders. A lapped car got out of shape in front of Howard on lap twenty-one, opening the door for VonDohren to move into second. Howard fought for the remaining laps but could not regain the runner-up spot as Jeff Strunk took the win in the Norm Hansell #357 to earn the victory and collect $3,000.
Craig VonDohren, Duane Howard, Doug Manmiller (started 23rd) and Kyle Weiss made up the top five.
The nightcap was the Pioneer Pole Building Rislone URC Sprint feature. Robbie Stillwaggon entered the night with a 25-point advantage over Davie Franek in the final point race of the season.
At the drop of the green flag in the 25-lap feature, Scott Lutz set the pace. Joey Biasi was on a charge and took the lead on lap five. Biasi had solid control of the lead as Randy West and Art Liedl battled for second. Liedl took over second on lap ten just before the yellow flag came out for Davie Franek who stopped in turn two. Race leader, Joey Biasi, with nowhere to go, spun to avoid contact with the disabled car of Franek.
Art Liedl inherited the lead at that point with Randy West in second. At the halfway point, Liedl, West, Scott Lutz, Kevin Darling and Robbie Stillwaggon made up the top five. Liedl quickly established a comfortable lead as Stillwaggon moved into fourth on lap 15.
Race leader Liedl started to approach slower traffic and Randy West began to reel in the race leader. With five to go, the rest of the field was gaining on Liedl and West.
With the white flag waving, Stillwaggon moved into third and West was in clear sight of the race leader.
Liedl remained the leader and scored his first career URC victory with Randy West second, Robbie Stillwaggon (2012 URC Rislone Champion) third, Kevin Darling fourth and Scott Lutz fifth.