A PATIENT SCHERER GETS FIRST RoC VICTORY
IN A ROUGH AND TUMBLE SPENCER 75
flat paperclip type of race track where passing comes at a premium
will test the patience and metal of a driver and that was certainly
the case on Friday night at the Spencer Speedway. It took four tries
to start the race and after a yellow on lap one single file restarts
were the law of the land for the remainder of the event.
Daren Scherer of Binghamton, NY used a inside turn two pass of
leader Karl Hehr on that lap one restart to grab the lead. Once in
front Daren put it on cruise control to lead the final 74 laps to
claim his first career RoC Modified feature win.
Billy Putney ended up second with Chuck Hossfeld in third, Hehr
slipping back to fourth and Jan Leaty in fifth.
“ Yes, patience was the key tonight “ said race winner Daren
Scherer. “ I wasn’t sure if I could make it there on the outside
especially with the way the outside wall comes up on you here and
the 59 ( Hehr ) kept trying to run me up in the wall there on the
original starts. “
By luck of the draw Karl Hehr and Daren Scherer brought the 23 car
field to the green of starter Johnny Nelson. The action started
almost immediately up front with tire smoke, being the norm and a
multi car turn one accident taking place ending the evening for TJ
Potrzebowski and Patrick Emerling.
The second start almost got a full lap in except entering turn three
when JR Kent slid up the track collecting Jan Leaty and Matt
Hirschman. All three cars slid into the grassy area outside of turn
three to bring out the yellow, with all three continuing.
The third time wasn’t the charm as once again turn one was the
culprit with Doug Reaume and Jim Storace ending up turned around.
At this point RoC officials called for single file restarts for the
remainder of the race.
On the fourth try one lap was able to be scored with Hehr leading
Scherer, Jimmy Zacharias, Billy Putney, and Tommy Cloce. Just after
the cars completed the first lap Mike Leaty went sliding off turn
one into the outside tire barrier to bring out another yellow.
On the restart Scherer was able to get under Hehr at the apex of
turns one and two to grab the lead exiting the second turn.
Scherer spoke about the winning pass. “ I knew from the starts that
he was trying to push me higher and higher so I faked him into
thinking I was going to try and go around him to make a pass for the
lead. When he moved up just a hair in between turns one and two I
was able to turn my car quick enough to get underneath him and get
the lead. I think I could have gotten past him later in the race if
I didn’t pass him on that restart. “
The next 24 laps remained green with Scherer on cruise control in
front with Zacharias applying plenty of pressure on Hehr for second.
A shuffle in the top three took place on lap 30 as Zacharias got
under Hehr entering turn one. Contact between the two drivers took
place and the result saw Zacharias spinning into the infield grass
to bring out the yellow.
The next 32 laps went caution free and once again Scherer was
comfortably in front with Hehr holding second strongly. Now it was
Billy Putney’s turn to attempt to take second and after patiently
trying to make the pass for 30 laps Putney was able to sneak under
Hehr in turn two on lap 59.
The top five would see a shuffle again on lap 62 when Hehr, now in
third bobbled exiting turn four. Tommy Cloce got on the brakes to
avoid contact and this left Rusty Smith nowhere to go and he hopped
the right rear tire of Cloce and into the outside retaining wall,
ending his great run.
The action within the top five continued on the restart as Hossfeld
thought he was racing on dirt as he kicked the rear end out and this
worked as went from sixth to fourth exiting turn two, Wilbur Hebing
followed suit and moved in fifth.
After a lap 70 restart the action for third got heated once again as
Hossfeld tried to go around Hehr for third. Hebing stuck his nose in
there, while Hossfeld backed out it and entering turn one with three
laps to go got under Hehr. Contact once again between the two cars
saw Hebing spinning into the infield grass to bring out the final
yellow of the race.
On the restart Hossfeld dirt tracked his way into third but up front
Scherer in for his first career RoC win over Putney, Hossfeld, Hehr,
and Jan Leaty.
Scherer spoke about the start of the race and his fearfulness of the
infamous Spencer turn four wall. “ It kind of reminds you of racing
at Wall, the way it jumps out at you “ said Scherer.
“ But the big thing for us tonight was that this was the first time
with these American Racer tires that the car wasn’t pushing. That
felt really good as I could drive it straight off the corner and
never had to fight to get it back the entire night. The car stayed
consistent all night long, we never had to change one item in the
setup of the car, that is how good this car was “ remarked Daren.
When asked about winning his first RoC race Scherer quipped, “ I can
relax now ( with a smile )? “ “ Hopefully this has broken the ice
and there are more wins for me down the road. “
Second place finisher Billy Putney perfectly summed up racing at
Spencer and how this race panned out. “ It’s a tough track and it’s
really difficult to pass here as it’s a paperclip and it is flat and
the outside groove is sparse. You really have to be patient and wait
for somebody to make a mistake, so you can get in there. Unless you
ram them out of the way or are day and night faster than everyone,
you have to take what you can get here at Spencer and tonight we got
Daryl Lewis, Jr. won the $500 Gater Racing News B Modified bonus
after a spirited race long duel between him and TJ Zacharias.
Qualifying heat race winners for the 24 car field were Putney, Jan
Leaty, and Scherer.
NOTES; A large gathering of racing fans came out for the
evening of racing entertainment. JR Kent missed hot laps due to not
being able to start the car after unloading it, his night didn’t get
any better as hard contact with the turn two outside wall late in
the feature saw significant damage take place. That same outside
wall collected Chris Risdale in the heat race and the result saw
Risdale missing the remainder of the evening with a front clip
replacement coming up. Matt Hirschman encountered motor woes during
the feature. Kyle Ebersole was looking for three wins in a row and a
fourth place start had him in prime position to give it a shot but a
left front flat after the initial start forced him pit side and he
recovered for a sixth place finish. Many teams spent considerable
time after the races working on their wrecked racecars in the
infield due to the next race the following evening. Plenty of
attention directed to the unique body styles on the Mike Leaty, Jan
Leaty, Patrick Emerling, and TJ Zacharias cars as teams are
experimenting on ways to get the car to go through the corners
better. These four cars will look different at the next race due to
their body style not conforming to RoC Body Rules.
FINISH; Daren Scherer, Billy Putney, Chuck Hossfeld, Karl
Hehr, Jan Leaty, Kyle Ebersole, Jimmy Zacharias, Andy Walko, Tommy
Cloce, Wilbur Hebing, Jim Storace, Daryl Lewis, Jr., TJ Zacharias,
JR Kent, Rusty Smith, Matt Hirschman, Andy Lewis, Mike Leaty, Doug
Reaume, Mike Odwazny, Jerry Boerman, Patrick Emerling, TJ
DNS; Chris Risdale.
Hard Charger - Andy Walko
Hard Luck - Mike Leaty
Gater Racing News $500 Top 2 barrel finisher: Daryl Lewis,
Source: JR Kennerup / RoC Modified Tour