MALTA, N.Y. — Marc Johnson won the battle Friday night but point leader Brett Hearn won the war, finishing second to Johnson in the 35-lap DIRTcar modified feature at the Albany-Saratoga Speedway to clinch the championship.
Kenny Tremont Jr., chasing Hearn for the title, dropped out of his heat and started dead last in the 30-car field. He clawed his way to third but still lost points to Hearn. Polesitter Jeremy Wilder was fourth ahead of Ronnie Johnson and invader Tyler Dibble.
A seven-car melee in turn one on the initial start scrambled the field and both Marc Johnson and Hearn moved a head a few rows for the restart. The 12th-starting Johnson ran down Wilder on lap 13, with Hearn, up from 15th, following at halfway. A yellow on lap 26 for a crash at the pit gate erased Johnson’s lead but Hearn was content to run smoothly in second and sew up the title.
Tremont, in the meantime, stood fifth for the restart and soon disposed of Ronnie Johnson and Wilder but could never catch Hearn.
In the companion USAC DMA midget feature, 10th starting Adam Pierson won by a full straightaway over Kevin Chafee, Scott Holcomb, Joe Krawiec, early leader Dean Christiana and Johnny Heydenreich, who had come from last after dropping out of his heat. Heydenreich got as high as second but his car slowed on the white flag lap and he barely made the checkers.
Jack Swinton won the Sportsman finale over Jack Speshock and Leo Sousie.