Monday, July 06, 2020


YORK HAVEN, Pa.: When a driver is involved in a caution period and has to tag the rear, their chance of winning is almost zero.

Russ Mitten doesn’t think that way. Too many times in his career, he’s been able to storm through the field and get close to pulling off what many drivers believe is just short of impossible.

On Saturday night at BAPS Motor Speedway, Mitten did one better. He went to the back twice and came through to claim the prestigious Firecracker 40 for the Super Sportsman and bank a sizable $2,500 payday.

“That’s not how I think,” Mitten said. “I’ve crashed before and went to the rear. I went back to 24th a few weeks ago in a 25-lap race and almost came back to win on the last lap. I don’t mind starting in the back. It makes it more exciting.

“It’s always good to get a win. It just sucks it wasn’t a point race. I’m not quite sure why we have non-point races, but whatever. After getting crashed in the beginning, it’s nice to come from the tail and get back up there and win.”

Before a lap could be scored in the 40-lap main event, the caution was thrown for an incident involving Rich Eichelberger and Allan Hallman. Four-time winner and pole-sitter Kenny Edkin owned the restart and led the first lap.

The second caution of the event came out on Lap 2. Chase Gutshall, John Edkin, and Hallman were involved, and leader Kenny Edkin headed to the pit area.

Scott Dellinger, who started third, took over the point on the restart. His paced was slowed on Lap 13, when a five-car melee occurred. Mitten was involved with Frankie Herr, Nate Young, John Edkin, and Daniel John.

One lap later, Hallman spun to bring out another caution. Dellinger headed to the pits during the yellow flag, handing the lead to Mike Enders.

There was another caution on the restart. Enders led through the 22nd circuit when a competition caution occurred for a fuel stop.

When the race went back to green, Enders continued to lead. Meanwhile, Mitten was charging through the field and was 10th by the 20th circuit and burst into the top five by the time Lap 23 was complete.

The laps clicked by, and Mitten was able to wrestle the runner-up spot away from Timmie Barrick on Lap 38. One lap later, he got the caution he needed when Dave Conrad’s car caught on fire.

“I was going to run second,” Mitten said. “It went quite a while under green, from like Lap 22 to Lap 38. I got up to second, and the leader was out there a good piece.

“I wasn’t going to catch him in two laps. The caution with two laps to go was a big factor in winning the race. One thing Tim Shaffer always tells me, ‘You’ve got to put yourself in position.’”

Mitten did just that.

Enders chose the bottom for the double-file restart. Mitten got a run on the top heading through the first and second corner and carried that momentum into Turn 3, where he took the lead for good.

“I just tried not to spin my tires and went down the straightaway against his back bumper,” Mitten said. “When he peeled off, I drove it on the top and was able to carry enough momentum to get on the outside of him down the backstretch. I beat him into Turn 3, and that was it.”

Mitten led the final two circuits and scored his first BAPS Super Sportsman win of 2020 at the York Haven facility. It was also his first victory in the Firecracker 40.

“I’ve been close a lot of times, kind of like the 100-lapper,” Mitten said. “I’ve been second three or four times in the 100-lapper and never could pull it off. Maybe this year, we can break that, too.” 

Enders settled for second, with Frankie Herr coming back through the field to get third. Matt Ondek and Barrick completed the top five. Dellinger was fast qualifier with a lap of 17.336. Mitten, Kenny Edkin, and Herr were heat winners for the 27-car field. Todd Leonard won the consolation.

Troy Miller dominated the 20-lap Creekside Auto Sales Late Model main event, which featured one caution over the race distance.

Miller started on the pole and never looked back. There was a caution at the halfway point, but Miller kept the field behind him for the win.

Sean Merkel, Devin Frey, Eric Hohol, and DJ Mease completed the top five. Frey, Merkel, and Hohol were heat winners for the 22-car field.

In the Frankie’s Used Auto Parts/Mike’s Towing Street Stock main event, Brian Walls took the lead on the third circuit and cruised to the win.

Greg Diehl jumped out front from his second-place starting spot. Walls stalked the leader before making the winning move.

Jasen Geesaman, Michelle Walls, Will Walls, and Diehl completed the top five. Geesaman and Brian Walls were heat winners for the 19-car field.

Scott Houdeshell topped the 21-car field in a Gene Latta Ford Central PA Legends presented by Baker Door Company main event that featured seven caution periods.

Stephen Wurtzer started fourth on the grid and led the first 15 circuits. Houdeshell, who started seventh, took the lead on Lap 16 and sped away to victory.

Wurtzer finished second and was followed by Chuck Dell, Michael McClane, and Tim O’Sheehan. Jorjie Sweger and Houdeshell were heat winners.

A picture containing drawing

Description automatically generatedBAPS Motor Speedway
York Haven, Pa.
Saturday, July 4, 2020
For Immediate Release


Feature (40 Laps): 1. 77-Russ Mitten[4]; 2. 3B-Mike Enders[13]; 3. 70D-Frankie Herr[2]; 4. 2M-Matt Ondek[10]; 5. 7-Timmie Barrick[5]; 6. 00-Troy Rhome[14]; 7. 5D-Luke Deatrick[8]; 8. 360-Jay Fannasy[9]; 9. 383-Steve Fannasy[21] (Dirty Deeds Hard Charger); 10. 25-Bobby Hockenberry[20]; 11. 35-John Edkin[7]; 12. 8-Rich Eichelberger[16]; 13. 71K-Tyler Wolford[11]; 14. 19R-Eric Rutz[17]; 15. 318-Todd Leonard[19]; 16. 29-Adam Wray[15]; 17. 38-Allan Hallman[24]; 18. 22-Daniel John[18]; 19. (DNF) 18-Dave Conrad[22] (Dirty Deeds Hard Luck Award); 20. (DNF) 14-Nate Young[23]; 21. (DNF) 10H-Dave Hollar[12]; 22. (DNF) 1A-Chase Gutshall[6]; 23. (DNF) 30-Scott Dellinger[3]; 24. (DNF) 75-Kenny Edkin[1].

Lap Leaders: Kenny Edkin (1), Scott Dellinger (2-13), Mike Enders (14-38), Russ Mitten (39-40)

Super Sportsman Heat 1 Finish (10 Laps/Top 6 Qualify to A Main): 1. 77-Russ Mitten[3]; 2. 30-Scott Dellinger[4]; 3. 35-John Edkin[2]; 4. 71K-Tyler Wolford[1]; 5. 3B-Mike Enders[6]; 6. 8-Rich Eichelberger[5]; 7. 318-Todd Leonard[7]; 8. 25-Bobby Hockenberry[8]; 9. 38-Allan Hallman[9].

Super Sportsman Heat 2 Finish (10 Laps/Top 6 Qualify to A Main): 1. 75-Kenny Edkin[3]; 2. 1A-Chase Gutshall[4]; 3. 360-Jay Fannasy[2]; 4. 10H-Dave Hollar[5]; 5. 00-Troy Rhome[6]; 6. 19R-Eric Rutz[8]; 7. 18-Dave Conrad[7]; 8. 1R-Jim Hulse[9]; 9. (DNF) 16R-Ryan Rutz[1].

Super Sportsman Heat 3 Finish (10 Laps/Top 6 Qualify to A Main): 1. 70D-Frankie Herr[4]; 2. 5D-Luke Deatrick[1]; 3. 2M-Matt Ondek[2]; 4. 7-Timmie Barrick[3]; 5. 29-Adam Wray[7]; 6. 22-Daniel John[5]; 7. 383-Steve Fannasy[9]; 8. 14-Nate Young[6]; 9. (DNF) 6-Chris Meleason[8].

Super Sportsman Consolation (10 laps/Top 6 Qualify to A Main): 1. 318-Todd Leonard[1]; 2. 25-Bobby Hockenberry[4]; 3. 383-Steve Fannasy[3]; 4. 18-Dave Conrad[2]; 5. 14-Nate Young[6]; 6. 38-Allan Hallman[7]; 7. (DNF) 1R-Jim Hulse[5]; 8. (DNS) 16R-Ryan Rutz; 9. (DNS) 6-Chris Meleason.

Super Sportsman Time Trials: 1. 30-Scott Dellinger 17.356; 2. 1A-Chase Gutshall 17.439; 3. 70D-Frankie Herr 17.445; 4. 77-Russ Mitten 17.595; 5. 75-Kenny Edkin 17.628; 6. 7-Timmie Barrick 17.660; 7. 35-John Edkin 17.700; 8. 360-Jay Fannasy 17.871; 9. 2M-Matt Ondek 17.879; 10. 71K-Tyler Wolford 17.917; 11. 16R-Ryan Rutz 17.934; 12. Luke Deatrick 17.991; 13. 8-Rich Eichelberger 18.004; 14. 10H-Dave Hollar 18.011; 15. 22-Daniel John 18.101; 16. 3B-Mike Enders 18.116; 17. 00-Troy Rhome 18.119; 18. 14-Nate Young 18.149; 19. 318-Todd Leonard 18.188; 20. 18-Dave Conrad 18.220; 21. 29-Adam Wray 18.261; 22. 25-Bobby Hockenberry 18.331; 23. 19R-Eric Rutz 18.481; 24. 6-Chris Meleason 18.662; 25. 38-Allan Hallman 18.842; 26. 1R-Jim Hulse 19.320.

Super Sportsman Feature Dash Finish (6 Laps): 1. 75-Kenny Edkin; 2. 70D-Frankie Herr; 3. 30-Scott Dellinger; 4. 77-Russ Mitten; 5. 7-Timmie Barrick; 6. 1A-Chase Gutshall; 7. 35-John Edkin; 8. 5D-Luke Deatrick.

Super Sportsman Dash 4 Cash Finish (4 Laps): 1. 75-Kenny Edkin, $600; 2. 70D-Frankie Herr, $400; 3. 77-Russ Mitten, $200.


Feature (20 Laps): 1. 115-Troy Miller[1]; 2. 118-Sean Merkel[3]; 3. 62-Devin Frey[4]; 4. H22-Eric Hohol[2]; 5. 18-Derrick Mease[6]; 6. NINE-Alan Sagi[11]; 7. 116-Travis Mease[5]; 8. 22-Chase Billet[13]; 9. 72-Wayne Pfeil[15]; 10. 24-Daulton Bigler[20]; 11. 13X-Ben Whitaker[9]; 12. 41-Jake Moser[12]; 13. 19-Drew Weisser[10]; 14. 21-Joey Hoffer[8]; 15. X4-Lou Egrie[7]; 16. 2-Dan Zechman[18]; 17. 112-Brandon Little[17]; 18. 88C-Chuck Cox III[21]; 19. NINEX-Ross Leinbach[16]; 20. 711-Jennifer Hartz[22]; 21. (DNF) 21M-Matt Murphy[14]; 22. (DNF) 4M-Kyle Moser[19].

Lap Leaders: Troy Miller (1-20)

Late Model Heat 1 Finish (8 Laps/All Qualify): 1. 62-Devin Frey[1]; 2. 115-Troy Miller[4]; 3. X4-Lou Egrie[5]; 4. 19-Drew Weisser[2]; 5. 22-Chase Billet[7]; 6. NINEX-Ross Leinbach[8]; 7. (DNS) 88C-Chuck Cox III; 8. (DNS) 711-Jennifer Hartz.

Late Model Heat 2 Finish (8 Laps/All Qualify): 1. 118-Sean Merkel[2]; 2. 116-Travis Mease[6]; 3. 21-Joey Hoffer[3]; 4. NINE-Alan Sagi[5]; 5. 21M-Matt Murphy[4]; 6. 112-Brandon Little[7]; 7. 4M-Kyle Moser[1].

Late Model Heat 3 Finish (8 Laps/All Qualify): 1. H22-Eric Hohol[1]; 2. 18-Derrick Mease[2]; 3. 13X-Ben Whitaker[4]; 4. 41-Jake Moser[7]; 5. 72-Wayne Pfeil[6]; 6. 2-Dan Zechman[5]; 7. (DNF) 24-Daulton Bigler[3].


Feature (20 Laps): 1. 1-Brian Walls[3]; 2. 18-Jasen Geesaman[4]; 3. 1W-Michelle Walls[6]; 4. 21W-Will Walls[10]; 5. 80D-Greg Diehl[2]; 6. 7P-Jim Palm[5]; 7. 543-Eric Tripp[1]; 8. 5W-Bud Witmer[7]; 9. 8-Sam Leonard Jr[9]; 10. FOUR-Eddie Richards[16]; 11. 64-Brandon Wanner[18]; 12. 64W-Stan Wanner[11]; 13. 14-Kyle Saylor[12]; 14. 47-Bob Scott Jr[13]; 15. 181-Butch Helsel[8]; 16. 14D-Justin Dashler[14]; 17. 15-Brian Boughter[19]; 18. (DNF) 5-Niklas Stoudt[15]; 19. (DNF) 81F-Dylan Welsh[17].

Lap Leaders: Greg Diehl (1-2), Brian Walls (3-20)

Street Stock Heat 1 Finish (8 Laps/All Qualify): 1. 18-Jasen Geesaman[1]; 2. 80D-Greg Diehl[9]; 3. 7P-Jim Palm[4]; 4. 5W-Bud Witmer[3]; 5. 21W-Will Walls[5]; 6. 64W-Stan Wanner[8]; 7. 47-Bob Scott Jr[2]; 8. 5-Niklas Stoudt[10]; 9. 81F-Dylan Welsh[6]; 10. (DNF) 15-Brian Boughter[7].

Street Stock Heat 2 Finish (8 Laps/All Qualify): 1. 1-Brian Walls[2]; 2. 543-Eric Tripp[4]; 3. 1W-Michelle Walls[7]; 4. 181-Butch Helsel[1]; 5. 8-Sam Leonard Jr[5]; 6. 14-Kyle Saylor[9]; 7. 14D-Justin Dashler[3]; 8. FOUR-Eddie Richards[8]; 9. 64-Brandon Wanner[6].


Feature (20 Laps): 1. 5-Scott Houdeshell[7]; 2. 14W-Stephen Wurtzer[4]; 3. 41-Chuck Dell Jr[9]; 4. 0-Michael McClane[10]; 5. UGLY-Tim O'Sheehan[13]; 6. 69-Cole Hahn[3]; 7. 18J-Jorjie Sweger[8]; 8. 55X-Richie Dobson[21]; 9. 17H-Timothy Hahn[2]; 10. 34-Dan Harrison[12]; 11. 27-Logan Carbaugh[11]; 12. 25-Eric Hurst[14]; 13. 1G-Shawn Groft[18]; 14. 90X-Eric McClane[20]; 15. 56-Zach Baxter[19]; 16. 11R-Scott Musselman[15]; 17. (DNF) 2-Scott Smith[6]; 18. (DNF) 95-Alex Schmiedel[5]; 19. (DNF) 26-Shaun Abney[1]; 20. (DNS) 83J-James Snow Jr; 21. (DNS) 15S-John Snavely.

Lap Leaders: Stephen Wurtzer (1-15), Scott Houdeshell (16-20)

Legend Heat 1 Finish (8 Laps/All Qualify): 1. 18J-Jorjie Sweger[9]; 2. 2-Scott Smith[4]; 3. 14W-Stephen Wurtzer[7]; 4. 17H-Timothy Hahn[1]; 5. 41-Chuck Dell Jr[5]; 6. 27-Logan Carbaugh[10]; 7. 34-Dan Harrison[2]; 8. 25-Eric Hurst[3]; 9. 55X-Richie Dobson[11]; 10. (DNF) 15S-John Snavely[6]; 11. (DNS) 56-Zach Baxter.

Legend Heat 2 Finish (8 Laps/All Qualify): 1. 5-Scott Houdeshell[5]; 2. 95-Alex Schmiedel[1]; 3. 69-Cole Hahn[3]; 4. 26-Shaun Abney[9]; 5. 0-Michael McClane[8]; 6. 90X-Eric McClane[10]; 7. UGLY-Tim O'Sheehan[7]; 8. 11R-Scott Musselman[6]; 9. 83J-James Snow Jr[2]; 10. (DNF) 1G-Shawn Groft[4].

Photo Credit: Tim Basehore (WRT Speedwerx)

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