Hahn Conquers 34 Raceway In First Visit

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Blake Hahn (52) races under Austin McCarl at 34 Raceway. (Mark Funderburk photo)
Blake Hahn (52) races under Austin McCarl at 34 Raceway. (Mark Funderburk photo)

WEST BURLINGTON, Iowa — Holding on through lapped traffic and letting the DriveWFX.com No. 52 eat the 34 Raceway cushion on Friday night, Blake Hahn’s inaugural trip to the Iowa oval ended with his seventh career victory with the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by the MAVTV Motorsports Network.

The event was co-sanctioned by the Sprint Invaders.

“I just have to say, this is one of the best tracks in Iowa. We don’t normally get to race short tracks here, it’s usually all big tracks and this place is high banks and slick to a curb; you couldn’t ask for better,” stated Hahn.

Coming down to the final two turns with Seth Bergman nearly taking the win away, Hahn had to duck under a slower car and was able to use the slower machine as a pick to hold off the Mud Slingers Coffee No. 23.

On having to hold off the No. 23, Hahn said, “I saw on the scoreboard at the Aussie [Scott Bogucki] was in second, then after the restart that Seth had gotten by him and I knew he to be rolling good, but I knew if I could stay on the cushion, especially on the restarts, I could get good momentum, but he did scare on one. I thought he had me slid, but we were able to get by him and at the finish, I just had to go where the lapped car wasn’t and hoped he didn’t change his line.”

Taking off with the lead from the pole, Hahn slid in front of Austin McCarl as the pair raced into the first two turns. Getting several car lengths over the No. 99x, that advantage disappeared as lapped traffic came into play on lap five.

Blocked for a couple of laps, the race for second between McCarl and the Sawblade.com No. 28 of Scott Bogucki morphed into a race for the lead with the trio in a high-speed game of Chess.

Making a small mistake on lap 12, Hahn was wheel to wheel with Austin McCarl off the second turn. Able to keep the No. 99x at bay, McCarl was slid by Bogucki for the runner-up spot. Racing into a group of slower cars, the top three again went at each other’s throats before the caution flew working lap 14 for Dustin Selvage.

Back to the last fully completed lap, McCarl moved back to second and immediately threw a slide job for the lead. Unable to head off the No. 52, the momentum sent McCarl over the cushion and allowed Bogucki to advance once again, with Bergman also taking advantage for third.

Shot sliding each other as Hahn built his lead, Bergman and Bogucki traded blows before the caution lights came on again for Harli White on lap 16. Diving the hub on the restart, Bergman went after the lead, but to no avail, as the caution slowed action again with 17 laps complete. Sliding for the lead again, the results were the same with Hahn railing the cushion to hold the top spot. Keeping pace with the No. 52 in clean air, Bergman closed but his run was hauled on lap 22 with the race’s final caution for Alex Hill.

Putting a half dozen car lengths on Bergman on the restart, Hahn was not out of the woods as the No. 52 found traffic with two laps to go. Bringing Seth right back into the fight, it was down to a car length on the final lap.

Sprinting into the final two turns, Hahn dove low on the lapped car who slid just high enough to keep the No. 23 from making the final lap pass.

Ending up third was the No. 28 of Scott Bogucki for his ninth top five of the season. Running from 10th, Robbie Price landed in fourth with Sam Hafertepe Jr. making up 12 spots after transferring out of the first B main to complete the top five.

The finish:

Feature (30 Laps): 1. 52-Blake Hahn, [1]; 2. 23-Seth Bergman, [8]; 3. 28-Scott Bogucki, [4]; 4. 21P-Robbie Price, [10]; 5. 15H-Sam Hafertepe Jr, [17]; 6. 17A-Terry McCarl, [16]; 7. 95-Matt Covington, [5]; 8. 99X-Austin McCarl, [2]; 9. 78-Kaley Gharst, [6]; 10. J2-John Carney II, [23]; 11. 14-Jordon Mallett, [20]; 12. 50-Paul Nienhiser, [12]; 13. 17W-Harli White, [15]; 14. 55-McKenna Haase, [7]; 15. 11-Roger Crockett, [11]; 16. 2X-Tucker Doughty, [21]; 17. 1K-Kelby Watt, [13]; 18. 7B-Ben Brown, [14]; 19. (DNF) 77X-Alex Hill, [3]; 20. (DNF) 81-Tanner Gebhardt, [19]; 21. (DNF) 40C-Cody Wehrle, [9]; 22. (DNF) 88-Dustin Selvage, [22]; 23. (DNF) 13-Brayden Gaylord, [18]