PORT ROYAL Brent Marks’ summer hot streak continued Saturday night with the biggest win of his sprint car career coming in dominating fashion during the Living Legends Dream Race at Port Royal Speedway.
His fourth overall win of the season, and second straight at Port Royal, was worth $11,320.
“That was awesome,” Marks said in victory lane. “The only thing I want is this big check; you guys can keep the money. This is the biggest win of my whole entire career. It’s taking all I have not to bawl my eyes out here. This is pretty special and I’ve worked so hard to get to this point in my life. I can’t thank my dad, my guys and my sponsors enough. This is awesome. That’s three (wins) in a row and I don’t know if I’ll ever do that again in my life.”
Marks has traveled out of central Pennsylvania more to race this season and that experience has helped him.
“You learn different things and you can bring it back here, and it makes you so much better,” Marks said. “I’ve been able to prove that the last three races. Everything’s been clicking. I’ve made myself a better driving. I’m making better decisions. There’s a lot of times I could have pushed the issue tonight. I just calmed myself down. I didn’t know how big of a lead I had. I was way too good on the top and I wasn’t moving down there until I saw a nose.”
Nate Snyder started on the pole of the 35-lap main event. Defending Port Royal champion Blane Heimbach was scheduled to start second, but his car wouldn’t start and he went to the pits. This moved Dave Blaney to second.
Snyder would get the lead from Blaney on the backstretch of the first lap. Marks started third and quickly passed Blaney for second.
Marks began to pressure Snyder for the lead. He was under him in turns three and four, but couldn’t make the pass. However, an outside move off turn two got him into the lead as they completed five laps.
“He was tough to get by and was pretty strong,” Marks said. “I thought that was how it was going to be the whole race. I was lucky enough to make a pretty big move down into three when I slid him and had just enough speed to clear him. That’s all it takes for me to get in front of him a little bit and take the air off his wing and not allow him to turn back underneath him.”
From there, Marks set sail.
Blaney and fifth starter Greg Hodnett had both driven by Snyder and closed slightly on the leader once he began to lap slower cars.
That really didn’t slow his pace as he sliced his way through lapped cars keeping Blaney and Hodnett at bay. Hodnett would get by Blaney, but had about a straightaway and three lapped cars between himself and Marks.
Marks scored the win and earned a total of $11,320 for the night. The 35-lap race went non-stop in a track record time of 11:16.026.
Hodnett settled for second, but took home $7,320 for the night.
“Normally, with our races today, whoever wins the race to the front first usually has a good shot at winning and that’s what happened,” Hodnett said.
Blaney finished third and earned an even $3,000.
“We weren’t good enough to race for the win,” Blaney said. “It’s always fun to come out here and race.”
Lucas Wolfe finished fourth earning $2,800 and Rick Lafferty was fifth earning $2,100. Dave Ely, Snyder, Chad Layton, Logan Wagner and Ryan Taylor completed the top 10.
Lance Dewease earned an extra $250 for being the Hard Charger racing from 20th to 11th.
Wolfe set fast time with a lap of 15.709 seconds. After time trials, two 16-lap semi-features were run. The top three finishers in each semi-feature drew for the top six starting spots in the Dream Race. Hodnett won the first semi over Wolfe and Snyder, while Heimbach won the second over Blaney and Marks.
Tyler Bear won the 12-lap non qualifiers main event.
Todd Snook won the first feature for the 355 econo late models over Troy Miller, Andrew Yoder, Tim Krape and Devin Hart. In the second feature, it was Yoder getting the win over Krape, Snook, Miller and Hart.
Port Royal always honors two living legends during the Dream Race. This year was current driver and six-time track champion Lance Dewease, along with former car owner Maynard Boop.