ABBOTTSTOWN, Pa. — Third-generation driver Jim Siegel held off the challenges of 10-time track champ Fred Rahmer and new 10-lap track record holder Brent Marks to score his eighth career Lincoln win Saturday afternoon.
After a rough 2012, Siegel’s $3,200 win was his first in the Pigeon Hills since Sept. 3, 2011.
Siegel started beside polesitter Cory Haas on the front row and, after a restart following a Greg Hodnett flip on the front stretch on the initial start, yielded to the faster Haas entering turn one of the first lap. He was still running second when Haas tangled with lapped traffic and flipped over the wall in turns three and four of lap 15. Haas was uninjured, but his second flip in two weeks took out the traffic light and catch fence below the Coors Light scoreboard.
“It’s really a shame, this was Cory’s race. He was better,” said Siegel upon exiting his Mason-Dixon Vault Company/C.H Folks and Son Feeds No. 59 in victory lane, “I’m tired. I was just trying to log some laps and knock the rust off. It’s so tough to come out on a track that’s pretty fast and aggressive like this. I did kind-of show him the top down there, and he moved up. He was better than me. He was manhandling that thing. It’s a shame he tore that thing up. My dad’s raced a long time, and he would a put a foot in my butt if I would not have listened to the ‘move over’ flag. It’s disheartening that that much equipment got tore up.”
Siegel assumed the lead, with seventh-starting Marks and 12th-starting Rahmer in tow. Rahmer shot around Marks on the restart, and closed on Siegel as the leaders entered lapped traffic with five laps to go. Marks hung around as well, and actually drove under Rahmer for second in turn two of lap 24, but the caution came out for defending champ Dan Dietrich, who blew a tire on the front stretch while running fourth.
Siegel held off both Rahmer and Marks over the final two laps to become the second winner in as many races in the Pigeon Hills.
“I haven’t won here in a while,” said Siegel, “It feels like forever. The Goodyear tire just wasn’t our deal. I’m really happy to see Hoosier back. As long as it’s been for me, I’m sure it’s been close to that long for Fred, and he’s hungry as ever. You never know what you’re going to get with him. You have to be on your toes, and thank God it was only two laps at the end and not five or ten.”
J.J. Grasso came from ninth starting spot to cross fourth, with Logan Schuchart completing the top five. Sixth through tenth were Scott Geesey, opening day winner Brian Montieth, Adam Wilt, Alan Krimes (who came from the back after damaging a tire during the Hodnett flip), and Lance Dewease.
The show was delayed by 45 minutes when three snow squalls forced master track preparer Fred Putney and his crew to run the track in three times. It showed, as the super fast surface saw the sprinters turning laps faster in the qualifying events than the one-lap track record. And to top it off, Brent Marks drove the fastest ten laps in speedway history, including the old track pre-weight rule record. His ten-lap time of 2:12.817 was five second faster than the post-weight rule record and was faster than the all-time 10-lap record of 2:12.905 set by Brian Leppo in June of 2008.