Papenhausen returns to Victory Lane
By Don Martin II Photography by Paul Gould
Reigning DIRTcar Late Model champion Richard Papenhausen turned in a dominant performance in winning the 20 lap Main Event Saturday night at Antioch Speedway. This was the second win of the season for Papenhausen, who started his night off with an eight lap heat race win. From the drop of the green flag, Papenhausen set a blistering pace and pulled ahead by a wide margin. He was never seriously challenged on his way to the victory. Shawn DeForest led a close three car battle for second for most of the race. As they raced to the checkered flag, ninth starter Clay Daly pulled even with DeForest in a photo finish. Official scorers ruled that DeForest finished second ahead of Daly, point leader Jeff Decker and David Newquist.
Point leader Bryan Grier won the 20 lap All Star Series Wingless 360 Sprint Main Event. This was the third win of the season for Grier, and it came after a good battle with Robert Floyd. The race only had one yellow flag, and Grier raced into the lead at the start ahead of Floyd and Shannon Newton. Floyd closed in on Grier after they completed the 16th lap, and he made an outside pass on the back stretch to gain the lead on lap 17. As they exited Turn 2, Newton spun for the only yellow flag. Scoring reverted back a lap, and Grier was put back into the lead. Floyd gave it a valiant effort on the final lap, but Grier kept his cool for the win. Previous winner Bob Newberry came from tenth starting to finish third, followed by Alan Miranda and Rick Panfili.
Jim Freethy won the 20 lap Limited Late Model Main Event. This was the first win of the season for the 2013 champion, and it moved him into a tie for second in the standings. Freethy has been consistent all year with five Top 3 finishes. On this occasion, he had to hold off point leader Kimo Oreta for the win. Heat race winner Mike Gustafson finished third ahead of Mark Garner and a season best fifth for Chad Hammer.
After the Limited Late Model race, Mark Garner jumped into his B Modified and won that 20 lap Main Event. This was Garner’s second win, and it came after contact sent him spinning in the late stages of the race. Heat winner Chuck Golden set the pace for four laps before Garner’s inside pass in Turn 3 moved him ahead. On a lap 14 restart, point leader K.C. Keller gained the lead from Garner, and contact sent Garner spinning in Turn 2 for a yellow flag. Garner was quickly back into second on the restart, and he gained the lead with Keller’s solo spin in Turn 4 on lap 16. Keller made a last ditch attempt at the winning pass in the final turn, but he spun for the second time as Garner won ahead of Nick Caughman Jr. Keller settled for third ahead of Golden and Kevin Brown.
Michael Cooper won the 20 lap Hobby Stock Main Event. This was Cooper’s first win since opening day. Fellow heat winner Melissa Myers ran second for the first 12 laps. After contact put Jordan Swank into the front wall for a lap 12 yellow flag, both Myers and fourth place Chris Long pitted with flat tires. Cooper led Cameron Swank on the restart. Despite late pressure from Cameron Swank, Cooper brought it home to victory. Cameron Swank settled for his fourth runner up finish of the season as Myers, Chris Sorensen and Gene Haney rounded out the Top 5.
Kevin Miraglio won the 20 lap Dwarf Car Main Event. This was the first win for the defending champion since the season opener, and he also won his heat race. The race had heavy attrition as David Rosa hit the Turn 4 wall early. A stuck throttle in point leader Mike Corsaro’s car resulted in a crash with Devan Kammermann that ended the race for both. Miraglio avoided the tangles and took the checkered flag ahead of Mike Reeder. However, Reeder was disqualified in post race tech. Brian Gray had his best night of the year with a heat race win and a second place feature finish, followed by Mario Marquez and Chris Becker.