May 26, 2007 12:41 AM EDT
Paine and Henderson Return to Black Rock to win their 4th Features Each of 2007
By RICH VLECK
DUNDEE, NY - After a week off to regroup from their first loses of the season at Black Rock, Steve Paine and Todd Henderson were back on top Friday night in Dundee.
With thunder storms threatening the Black Rock Speedway just miles south in the afternoon, they would never touch the 4/10-mile, allowing for another triple-digit car count in the pits to race for the 6th full Friday of 2007.
Steve Paine dominated the 25-lap Marbles Automotive 358-Modified Feature to cruise to his fourth win of the season at his hallowed stomping grounds. It took him half the race to get into the lead, but once he did it was all over.
Paine attempted to pass Ron White for the race lead on lap 8 on the bottom but found no success. On the following restart on lap 11, “The Hurricane” swung around the top of the No. 5w and discovered that the topside would be the new “Paine Lane” for the night.
“That’s the first time the top has been good here all year,” exclaimed the Waterloo, NY driver in Victory Lane. “I had a good battle with Ron (White) for a bunch of laps but he gave me some room up top and I just took it.”
Even after the Tallmadge Tire No. 7x TEO Chassis got into the lead using the top of the track, no others decided to venture up there, staying committed to the inferior bottom line.
The win gave the multi-time track champion the point lead back, with things still set to get dicey later on in the year with potential commitments.
Ron White was able to hang on for his best finish of the season in second, holding off the advances of Bath, NY’s Dave DuBois, who for the second time this season picked up the “Up and Comer Award” presented by the Finger Lakes Auto, Track and Marine NAPA.
Dale Welty as strong all night and came across in fourth, just ahead of two-time defending Champion Brian Swarthout, who completed the top-five.
Todd Henderson proved that it was not just his motor that got him to victory lane for the first three Hoselton Automotive Crate Sportsman Features. “Handsome Todd” won his heat and pulled out in front of the feature to lead the final 15 laps to claim his fourth win in five tries at Black Rock this season. Henderson was overjoyed in Victory Lane with the win in his No. 18H, a victory he felt cleared his name of any controversy.
While the Canandaigua, NY driver was winning, Brady Fultz was feverously moving his way through the pack for the third straight night, picking up the runner up spot using the high side. Mike Entwistle won heat race two and had his best run of the season in third. Justin Wright and Loren Lincoln rounded out the top-five.
Jeremy Wonderling used his weeks of bad luck to land him on the pole for the 20-lap feature event in the Freedom Village USA Super Stock Fetature, he made the most of his opportunity.
The 2006 division Champion lead all the way to pick up his second win of the year, closing in on the point lead with Donnie Smith, who was runner-up. Rich Karlnoski was again strong for third with Quinn Sutherland and Bob Buono completing the top-five.
Darl Ellis was late getting to the track from his Binghamton, NY home on Friday night, but was there at the end to win his first career feature at Black Rock Speedway.
Ellis did not have power steering in the heat race and was overheating in the feature, but his biggest battle was with first-timer to Black Rock Andy Fisk. Fisk gave the No. 5x of Ellis everything he could handle, but just did not have enough to get around him and had to settle for second. Close in tow was Frank Chapman, Doug Smith and point leader Frank “Bubba” Burnell.
Jared Hill was decent in the street stock feature, finishing sixth, but he did even better in the Regional Truck Pro Truck Feature, where he captured his first win in that division. The Dundee local led the entire distance but began smoking half way through the race and had an oil leak to the end.
Hill was able to hold off the advances of Chris Leroux, who was second, with Bill Edminster completing the top-three. Terry Povoski crashed early in the event and pulled off after repairs.
Russ Wassner played off his first heat win of the season to capture his first ever feature victory at Black Rock in the Signs Plus of Kanona 4-cylinder feature. The Bloomfield, NY driver had to wait until lap 18 to get around Brett Crawford as those two, along with Ray Speicher had a tight battle through all 20-laps for the top spots.
Wassner snuck around Crawford’s No. 8 on the bottom on lap 18 and then had to deal with Speicher for the final two circuits, beating the No. 14 back to the line by just three feet. Behind those two were Crawford, Rich Sharpsteen II and Jack Ayers to complete the top-five.
Early in the night, Dylan Cecce was out in front and looked good to pick up his fourth win in a row in the Black Rock Bandits, but it was not to be. Tom Austin Jr. won his second race of the season, increasing his point lead, as he held off the hard charges from the rest of the pack to win. Cecce held on for second with Kreg Crooker rounding out the podium positions.
Racing action has a different feel next week at the Monster Trucks invade the Yates County Powerplant for two nights of car-crushing excitement. The monsters will be joined by everything but the modifieds on Friday and will see a Total Destruction Demolition Derby on Saturday.