Port Royal features go to Wagner, Parks and Buckwalter
PORT ROYAL – Mike Wagner, Matt Parks and Steve Buckwalter took the feature wins at Port Royal Speedway on Saturday night in the 410 sprint, late model and ARDC Midgets mains, respectively.
For Wagner of Harrisonville the win marked his 10th career victory at the track where he also owns a pair of titles.
For Parks, the victory in a stacked and thrilling late model main was his second of the season at the oval.
And for Buckwalter, the checkered flag was his third in as many ARDC shows overall this season.
Cliff Brian and Wagner started on the front row of the 25-lap 410 sprint feature and Wagner allowed Brian to lead only the first lap before he took over at the front.
Wagner entered the backmarkers with the lead on the seventh tour just about the time that sixth starter Doug Esh began soaring around the speedway, really making time in the top groove.
Like a rocket, Esh blasted the cushion in the first and second turns, driving by Dylan Cisney for fourth on the same lap and then both he and Rick Lafferty picked off Brian for second and third respectively a lap later.
Esh dusted off Lafferty with nine away and set his sights on Wagner who he promptly ran down for the lead and appeared ready to pass easily when the caution flag unfurled with 11 laps to go.
Wagner got away on the restart and again entered traffic with five laps left and that’s when Esh began really struggling on the cushion and it soon became apparent he had a tire going down.
The tire expired with a lap to go, rolling Esh over in the fourth corner and stopping the field a lap shy of the finish.
Lafferty realigned second but failed to complete a swoop for the lead on the restart, instead settling for second.
Chad Layton ended third after starting ninth in the field.
Cisney rode home fourth and Mike Erdley finished fifth.
Sixth through 10th went to Blane Heimbach, Ryan Bohlke, Cliff Brian, Nate Snyder and Davey Sammons.
Heats for the 23-car field went to Brian, Wagner and Lafferty.
Derek Casner led the first lap of the 20-lap late model main before third starter Steve Campbell took over while Matt Parks took the green flag from the seventh position.
A yellow flag quickly unfurled just before the second lap was scored when Casner made contact with lead challenger Chad Hollenbeck in the fourth corner, sending Hollenbeck out of control, careening toward the pit opening.
Another yellow with five away put sixth starter Tim Wilson on Campbell’s tail with Parks in third.
Parks pounced for the second spot when action resumed but Wilson was up to the test and reclaimed the spot before coming after Campbell.
On the eighth lap, the lead duo crossed the line racing less than a car length apart as Parks challenged all the while.
Parks finally got by Wilson for second with seven laps to go and then dogged Campbell through the final stages as the leader’s mount began struggling to exit the corners smoothly.
It took until the final lap for Parks to finally get the better of Campbell and steal the victory, bringing the fans up off of their seats at the finish.
Wilson crossed third followed by Terry Naugle and an outstanding run by 20th starter Brett Schadel.
Sixth through 10th went to Marvin Winters, Scott Haus, Justin Kann, Jeff Miller and Tim Murphy.
Heats for the strong 29-car field went to Haus, Mitch Hack and Campbell with Trent Brenneman taking the consolation race.
A pair of red flags for flipping midgets marred the 20-lap ARDC main.
The first, on lap two, found Ryan Greth launching over the third turn fence but escaping injury.
The second red was for Jimmy Glenn, who flipped in the second turn only after leading briefly on the seventh tour.
Glenn took the lead from Brett Arndt but was pursued immediately by 15th starter Steve Buckwalter who motored into second.
Buckwalter took the lead on the eighth lap to control the final 12 laps handily.
Trevor Kobylarz took second with six to go but failed to challenge for the win.
Nick Wean was third followed by Arndt and P.J. Gargiulo.
Sixth through 10th went to Bruce Buckwalter Jr., Alex Bright, Brenden Bright, Steve Drevicki and Billy Courtwright.