HAGERSTOWN, Md. – Kyle Hardy became the third different leader in Saturday’s 33rd Annual “Speedy” Hayes Memorial Conococheague 44-lap event to post his first ever Late Model triumph at Hagerstown Speedway that was worth $4,400.
The second generation racer from Stephens City, VA made up a nearly two second deficit after passing earlier race leader Andy Anderson to move into second and later pass C. S. Fitzgerald to lead the final six laps for a 3.518 second advantage at the checkered.
“This means a lot to me,” Hardy said. “I really don’t know what to say. We’ve never been in this situation. These MBH cars are awesome. I can’t thank these guys enough for what they do for me.”
With rain rapidly approaching from the west, it also was the Kyle and Kyle show as Kyle Lear scored victory in the 22-lap Ernie Jones Memorial for the Late Model Sportsman after coming from 11th and taking the lead from Justin Weaver on a 19th lap restart. In a green to checkered Pure Stock event, Darrin Younker’s second win of the season also came over Mike Corbin as he held off the nine time winner by .738 of a second. Sprinkles began falling when the victory lane interviews ended.
With a three car invert for the Late Models in the Hayes –Conococheague event, Andy Anderson grabbed the lead over third starter Brian Tavenner while outside pole sitter Hardy was third by the second lap.
Fitzgerald was headed to the front from seventh and pressured Hardy to grab his position on the fourth lap and then challenge Tavenner to take over second two laps later. He nipped away at Anderson’s lead until catching him and getting past on the 14th lap.
Fitzgerald opened a comfortable lead while Hardy got past Tavenner at the halfway mark and then past Anderson on the 30th lap. Hardy began to reel in Fitzgerald with each lap until pulling onto his rear bumper by the 37th. On the next lap, Hardy ducked under Fitzgerald on the backstretch and once ahead, he began to open up his lead until stretching it to 3.518 seconds.
“There was a little bit of moisture on the back stretch and I hit it just right that one time and it just launched it,” Hardy said. “The car was awesome, it couldn’t have got any better.”