LEHIGHTON, Pa. – Talk about being on a roll. Kris Graver has won for a third straight week and second time in a Modified at Mahoning Valley Speedway Saturday night.
The second year division driver has been wicked fast in the past month. In four features over a three week span he clicked off two Modified victories and was second and fifth in the others. Plus he annexed the SpeedSTR victory last Sunday. In the process Graver has pocketed in excess of $7000 in earnings and is only 14 points behind standings leader Earl Paules.
“The wins are good but we need the cash more than anything. Personally I don’t worry about the points. As long as I get the good finishes then the points will come right along with it,” said 21-year old Graver.
Starting 10th, by lap five Graver was in the top five. Racing at the front was Lou Strohl who had Chip Santee right next to him as well as Kyle Strohl. Santee and K. Strohl went back and forth for second while also in two-wide action was Nevin George and Graver.
Frontrunner L. Strohl was trying to end a five year winless spell but Santee and K. Strohl where making it extremely difficult on him. Still he managed to guard himself against the nonstop blitz.
As the race was nearing the end, things looked as though L. Strohl was going to pull off the overdue win. However, the unending battle between K. Strohl and Santee became a three car fight after Graver replaced George for fourth and the pressure on the leader now tripled.
For Santee, he backed out of the fight due to a broken sway bar. That gave Graver the chance to take third on lap 27. With four laps to go he passed K. Strohl and one lap later made quick work of L. Strohl with a turn three pass the next time around. Graver and L. Strohl did touch slightly but stayed concentrated on their route.
“I’m pretty sure we touched a little bit. I knew if I would have pulled alongside of Louie (Strohl) he would have got a little antsy. It was just racing. We were really close and we’re turning 9-seocnd laps and you can’t help that, you’re going to bump and bang,” noted Graver.
K. Strohl nipped L. Strohl on the final lap while George and Don Wagner rounded out the top five.