Dewease wins as Grove escapes weather funk

MECHANICSBURG — After six weeks of rain outs, Williams Grove Speedway got back to sprint car racing Friday night and it was Lance Dewease scoring his 94th career speedway win.

The all-time win leader at the track earned $4,180 in the World of Outlaws tune-up race as the series comes to town for Morgan Cup weekend next Friday and Saturday.

The Grove didn’t completely escape the rain Friday night as a shower hit the speedway and created about a 30-minute delay.

Front row starters Chad Trout and Anthony Macri made contact on the initial start. This led to contact behind them as fifth starter Danny Dietrich slowed on the front stretch bringing out the yellow. Freddie Rahmer’s car had front wing damage as well. Dietrich pitted, but returned at the rear.

“It’s never easy,” Dewease said. “It might look easy sometimes. I wish that first start would have went. I don’t know if those guys were playing games on purpose or it just happened. They could have wrecked the whole field. They got together before they even took off. I just went around them. I thought for sure the red would be coming on. We kept going, but we couldn’t get the lap in. It would have been nicer that way.”

Trout got the jump on Macri on the restart. Robbie Kendall passed Rahmer for third in the early laps. Dietrich stopped in turn three with three laps completed. His car had to be towed off the track this time with front end damage.

As Trout streaked away from Macri, Dewease was making his way forward passing Rahmer then Kendall for third with eight laps completed.

Dewease, from Fayetteville, began challenging Macri for second with 10 laps to go. Macri was on the bottom and Dewease in the middle groove. He made the pass entering turn three with six laps left. He was about a half-straightaway behind Trout.

Dewease quickly closed on the leader. He was on his bumper as they raced down the back stretch on lap 21. He made the winning pass the next lap on the back stretch.

“That’s as hard as I can go right there,” Dewease said. “I made a couple mistakes and then I decided I was going to run the top as hard as I could. I knew I could catch him, but I didn’t know if I would by the end. The track was a little tricky tonight. Those guys were running really good laps. I’m worn out. I’m too old for this wet, heavy stuff. It needs to slick up and dry out some.”

Dewease had to pass a few slower cars over the final two laps. He had a close call in turn four coming to the checkers, but still won by 1.281 over Trout and Macri. Kendall and Rahmer completed the top five.

Lucas Wolfe, Brian Montieth, Cory Haas, Rick Lafferty and T.J. Stutts rounded out the top 10.

Dewease set fast time over the 19-car field with a lap of 16.634. Dewease and Dietrich won the heat races. The dash inversion was six and won by Trout.

Glenndon Forsythe led all 20 laps winning the main event for the 358 sprints. Matt Findley, Troy Wagaman Jr., Doug Hammaker and Kevin Nouse completed the top five.