Last-Lap Pass Lifts Schneider In Limbacher Memorial

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Last-Lap Pass Lifts Schneider
Phillip Schneider in victory lane Saturday during the Rumble in Fort Wayne. (Blake Harris photo)

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Phillip Schneider completed a near-dreamlike Rumble in Fort Wayne weekend with a crown jewel victory in the third annual John Limbacher Memorial for Clone 360 go-karts.

Schneider took the Limbacher’s $2,000 top prize with a gutsy last-lap, last-corner pass of Joey Pendergrass, who had dispatched Jake Shelley for the point on lap 16 and appeared to be in control.

But Schneider was not to be denied. He keyed up a banzai run into turn three coming to the checkered flag, forced his way underneath Pendergrass and then raced home to victory lane.

Schneider became the third different winner in three runnings of the Limbacher with his triumph, joining Shelley (2017) and Dustin Heath (2018).

“I had to get up on the wheel pretty hard there,” said Schneider, who actually led the first seven laps before being passed by Jake Shelley on the eighth round. “I hated to see those cautions, man. I’ve got a long-run car, long-run tire and a long-run prep program, so those cautions didn’t help me too much. I know you’ve got to have an ace up your sleeve in these big races though, and we try to have that, but every time I saw a caution I was just like, ‘Oh great.’ And that’s the only reason we lost Friday night.

“I can’t thank my guys enough, though. Everyone does their part and I just do my little small part. It takes every one of them to get it done and I’m so proud that we’re standing in victory lane.”

The feature had three different leaders, with Shelley holding command from lap eight to lap 15 before Pendergrass got around him on the backstretch with five to go and brought Schneider with him.

That move ultimately led to Schneider’s stunning last-ditch effort to win the race, a score he called “extremely meaningful” on the frontstretch after his initial victory lane celebration.

The race was created in honor of the late John Limbacher, who passed away just prior to the 2017 Rumble and was a tremendous supporter of the annual indoor event and its drivers.

“John Limbacher was a great, great man. He would do anything to help anybody,” Schneider recalled. “He was a personal friend of mine, and that had a lot going on in my head. I kept thinking I had to hang it all on the line for that man in memory of him.

“His son’s a great friend of mine, John Jr., and I couldn’t be happier winning this one for them.”

The 20-lap feature for the Clone 360 division headlined a full day of racing for the go-kart and quarter midget fields inside the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum, with winners crowned in 13 classes.

Schneider ended the weekend with four wins in six tries, topping two features both Friday and Saturday.

He added the Clone 330 win to his resume in the finale, while Ryan Moran won the Senior Caged feature and Tristan Chamberlain finished a sweep of the Rumble in the Junior Caged class with his second win.

Other Saturday go-kart feature winners included Travis Fisher (Clone 400), Jakeb Boxell (Junior 3) and Knox Carmin (Kid Karts), who picked up his third Kid Kart feature in a row after also topping the 2018 Saturday race for the division.

Kaylee Boston (Light 160, Animal Combined) again won two features to lead the quarter midget contingent Saturday, pushing her total to four victories across three classes for the weekend.

Landon Hathaway completed a sweep of the Heavy 160 division, adding his second win of the weekend, while other quarter midget victors included Dylan Regnerus (Senior Honda), Nolan Mitchell (Junior Honda) and Taylor Nibert (Heavy 120).

To view complete race results, advance to the next page.