Starks’ Grove win a first, in Speedweek

Sentinel photo by TIM SHUMAKER
Ryan Smith sets fast time during the Mitch Smith Memorial Speedweek race at Williams Grove Speedway on Friday.

MECHANICSBURG — Trey Starks won the $10,000 Mitch Smith Memorial Friday night at Williams Grove Speedway in the seventh race of this year’s Pennsylvania Sprint Car Speedweek series.

The Williams Grove win was a career first for the Washington State native.

“The car felt awesome and I was going as hard as I could,” Starks said. “I don’t know how to get around here very good in my opinion. I was trying to drive as hard as I could to keep those guys behind us. Lapped traffic was tough and the track was fast for everybody.”

A false start was called on the initial start moving Starks to the pole and he grabbed the race lead.

The caution flew with one lap completed.

Starks blasted away from Matt Campbell on the restart on a fast racing surface thanks to rain earlier in the day.

He reached slower traffic with seven laps completed.

Brock Zearfoss moved inside Campbell making the pass for second with 15 laps completed. Starks had a 1.67 second lead.

Zearfoss caught Starks in traffic on lap 19, but Starks was able to pass two slower cars to gain an advantage again with nine laps to go. His lead increased to 1.73 with eight left.

From there, it was all Starks as he picked up the win in Scott Gorbrecht’s’ sprinter by 4.14 8 over Zearfoss. Aaron Ott, Campbell and Lucas Wolfe completed the top five. Ryan Smith, James McFadden, Lance Dewease, Danny Dietrich and Greg Hodnett rounded out the top 10.

Smith set fast time over the 34-car field with a lap of 16.648. Wolfe, Campbell, Starks and Chase Dietz followed Smith in qualifying.

Ott, Zearfoss, Eric Tomecek and McFadden won the eight-lap heat races. Cory Haas won the B-main.

The series continues at Port Royal Speedway tonight.

Freddie Rahmer went into the Williams Grove race leading the points race with 796. Rahmer had a very poor qualifying effort, however, timing in 20th spot. He had more trouble in his heat race as he spun on the backstretch. He did qualify for the main event.

Defending Speedweek champion Danny Dietrich was second in points with 771 and gained some on Rahmer after qualifying.

Two-time Speedweek champion Lucas Wolfe was third. Australian James McFadden (593) and Brock Zearfoss (587) were in the top five to start the night at the Grove.

Rahmer opened the series with a win last Friday night at Williams Grove. Dietrich won at Lincoln. NASCAR cup series point leader Kyle Larson won the next three nights at Path Valley, Lincoln and Grandview. Lance Dewease won Wednesday at Hagerstown. Port Royal’s Thursday night race was rained out.