DONNELLSON, Iowa — Russ Hall’s first outing with the Brockway Mechanical & Roofing Sprint Invaders last week at 34 Raceway was a rough one.
The Pleasant Hill, Iowa, driver made up for Saturday night by dominating the feature at Lee County Speedway. The win was Hall’s second at the three-eighths-mile oval and the fourth in his career with the Sprint Invaders.
Hall started from the pole in the feature by virtue of winning the Shake-up Dash and drawing the position. The first lap saw chaos with several cars getting sideways in turn two and then turn four. On the second go-around Carson McCarl spun in turn two, collecting Jon Agan. McCarl was sent upside down and was done for the night.
The restart saw Hall leading Tony Shilling, Mike Houseman Jr., Scott Thiel and Jarrod Schneiderman. Thiel made quick work of Houseman on the restart to take the show position. Paul Nienhiser, who was taken out during a crash in his heat race, had worked his way from the rear to ninth by lap eight when he spun bringing out the second and final caution to the event.
Hall had put several lapped cars between himself and Thiel, who had moved into second, but those cars were moved to the tail on the restart. Hard charger Josh Schneiderman, who was taken out in the heat in the same incident as Nienhiser, had charged from 17th to third by lap 11 and began to close on Thiel.
Meanwhile, Hall worked back through traffic to record the convincing win aboard the Skillz Motorsports No. 29.
“We were good tonight,” said Hall afterwards. “I like this track, it’s one of my favorites. It is racy and tricky. When our Junior Fan of the night drew me the pole after the Dash, I knew it was going to be big. Track position had a lot to do with it. I have to thank my crew, Ostrich Racing Engines for fixing my motor in a day or two, Schnee chassis and HRP Wings.”
Thiel held onto second.
“We were OK in the beginning, but Russ got out there,” Thiel said. “Towards the middle of the race, I found some rubber and we were running him down a little. Late in the race, the car started sputtering a little. I thought I was running out of fuel, so I backed it down to half throttle or so. I was just running my own race. It turned out it was the fuel switch. Overall, the Professional Plate XXX sprint car was phenomenal. My congratulations to Russ.”
Josh Schneiderman completed the top three with his charge from the rear.
“We had a nice race car. We had some bad luck in the heat race,” said Josh Schneiderman. “We were able to get up through there, and pick some cars off after the caution. I thought we had a shot at Scotty there, but we’ll take 17th to third. We’ll come back on the 16th (at Oskaloosa) and try to put it on them then.”
Bobby Mincer was fourth ahead of Shilling. Bret Tripplett, Jarrod Schneiderman, Agan, Nienhiser and Houseman rounded out the top ten. Tripplett, Shilling and Jarrod Schneiderman won the heat races. Kaley Gharst and Dustin Selvage, two threats to win entering the night, were both scratches after mechanical issues during hot laps sidelined them.