MECHANICSBURG, Pa. — The all-time Williams Grove Speedway victory leader, Lance Dewease, passed Brock Zearfoss on lap 24 and never looked back to win the $56,000 Champion Racing Oil National Open Saturday night.
Dewease dedicated his 15thWorld of Outlaws Craftsman Sprint Car Series triumph to the late Greg Hodnett, who was killed in a sprint car crash nine days earlier.
Daryn Pittman came from eighth to second with Brian Montieth completing the podium.
Zearfoss won the first of two Sears Craftsman Dashes to earn the pole for the 40-Lap feature alongside Dewease, who won the second dash. Zearfoss got a strong start and led the opening lap.
Dewease didn’t let Zearfoss out of his sights, as Montieth passed Brian Brown for third on lap seven Zearfoss reached the back of field on Lap 8 and began to maneuver through traffic before the caution flew Brad Sweet and Donny Schatz, as the top two in World of Outlaws in points sat atop turn two, with 12 laps complete. Schatz returned, but Sweet was done for the evening.
The double-file restart saw Zearfoss maintain control and turn under a Dewease slide job on lap 15 to retain the lead. Dewease was determined and not going away, chipping away on the bottom at Zearfoss’ lead.
As Zearfoss once again reached traffic, Dewease got a huge run through the middle of turn one to pull even with Zearfoss down the backstretch and take command of the field to lead lap 24.
At lap 25, World of Outlaws and Williams Grove officials made the decision to throw the caution flag to prevent a majority of teams from running out of fuel.
Following the open red flag, Zearfoss had something break on the car entering turn one and he came to a stop at the end of the frontstretch.
Montieth assumed second and threatened Dewease for the lead on the restart running his typical cushion-pounding line.
Daryn Pittman found speed on the bottom and got by Monteith for second on lap 27.
At this point, Dewease had established he was the class of the field and powered away from the field, navigating traffic with ease. Pittman was formidable and quick, but never got within striking distance of Dewease as the Hall of Famer went on to win his 92nd feature at Williams Grove and fourth National Open.
“This is for Greg [Hodnett]. This whole week is about Greg. Everyone that knew him knows how great of a racer is, but he was an even better person,” Dewease said. “No one understands how difficult this week has been. I wanted this one bad for this team. You always want to run well at this race, we had some bad luck last year,” Dewease said about his Kreitz Racing No.69k team.
Pittman was strong and finished runner-up at the National Open for the fourth time in his career.
“This weekend wasn’t about Posse or Outlaws, it was about honoring Greg and it was great to see Bobbi and Jaxx Johnson as well,” Pittman said. “I feel that were at the same pace as the 69K and that’s an accomplishment in its own right.”
Local fan-favorite Brian Montieth finished third, the best of his National Open career, and was pleased, “We were pretty good, I’m sitting here, real proud.”
Tim Shaffer and Ryan Smith rounded out the top five.
To see full results, turn to the next page.