PORT ROYAL, Pa. – Lucas Wolfe drove from sixth starting spot to win Saturday night’s PA Speedweek sprint car feature event at Port Royal Speedway worth $5,000, recording his elusive first victory at the track as well as in the speedweek series itself anywhere by taking the checkers.
It was also Wolfe’s first win for his car owner’s John and Pee Wee Zemaitis since joining the team this season.
Wolfe started out the night by setting a new one-lap track record in qualifying over the 34-car field in attendance, setting the mark at 15.168 seconds, an average speed of 127.381 mph.
With Wolfe aboard the potent Zemco No. 1 sprinter, his starting spot of sixth would prove to be the deepest of any of the 2014 speedweek winners to date.
Dave Blaney started the 30-lap main on the pole and took the lead over second starter Doug Esh when the race began. The first 20 laps would go non-stop with Blaney entering the rear of the field on the eighth tour with Esh giving chase followed by Logan Wagner and Wolfe.
Wolfe advanced to third on the 13th lap and then riding the rail down low he drove by Esh with 12 laps to go. Wolfe had run down leader Blaney by the time two-thirds of the race was completed as the Ohio driver worked his way flawlessly to that point through heavy and hectic lapped traffic.
And then with 10 laps to go the caution flag unfurled when Blaney gave up the lead after shredding a right rear tire as he raced down the frontstretch.
Only one more lap could be completed before Logan Wagner’s fine run came to and end when he coasted down the backchute. Smith had taken second from Esh just before the yellow, thus forcing him back to third when action again began with nine laps left.
Smith got around Esh for second with four laps remaining and although he was able to close in on the leader by the finish Wolfe took the checkers by .588 of a second.
The victory put Wolfe in a tie with Greg Hodnett for the speedweek series title as both drivers ended the night with 895 points and just one show to go on the series schedule.
Esh settled for third followed by 10th starter Hodnett and Curt Michael.
Matt Parks of Three Springs won for the first time this season in super late model action while Bill Powell took his third xtreme stock main of the year to close out the night.