Dietrich holds off Larson at Lincoln
ABBOTTSTOWN — Danny Dietrich came out on top of a back and forth battle with Kyle Larson to win the Kevin Gobrecht Memorial Saturday night at Lincoln Speedway.
The victory for Dietrich in the second race of Pennsylvania Sprint Car Speedweek was worth $9,200.
Larson led from the drop of the green flag, but Dietrich came on late in the race driving past Lance Dewease and then trading sliders several times with Larson before a huge run off turn four got him the lead for good coming for the white flag.
Following an opening lap red flag for a crash involving Kyle Reinhardt and Jeff Halligan, the 30-lap main event went non-stop, meaning they were racing each other thru heavy lapped traffic.
“That was a win it or wear it moment,” Dietrich said of his final pass for the win.
“It’s just so much fun when you’re racing with someone like Kyle. You’re going to race each other hard and clean. We both know if we crash it will be both of our faults pretty much. That’s what you’ve got to do — give 150 percent when you’re racing against Kyle and Lance and Little Freddie here. That was fun.”
They were racing hard and even made contact at one point in turn four as Larson completed the slider and Dietrich got into the back of him damaging his front wing.
“He slid me and I got tight on the cushion,” Dietrich said. “You get tight and you could put it in the fence. I got on the brakes and that made it worse. I had to use his rear bumper a little bit. We’re here to win every race.”
Lance Dewease took second from Freddie Rahmer and challenged Larson for the lead before Dietrich began his charge in the Gary Kauffman 48.
“We got past Little Freddie and set sail,” Dietrich said. “I was really, really good. The car came to us. I don’t know if those guys struggled in lapped traffic or what. We were able to mow down lapped traffic pretty clean and quick. Once I got to him, I knew it wasn’t going to be easy.”
It wasn’t easy, as Larson and Dietrich traded the top spot a few times before Dietrich secured his 10th career Speedweek victory.
“He slid across the race track and I was able to clear his right rear and that allowed me to launch down the frontstretch. I was hoping it did. It was a win it or wear it moment. Just glad to get the win.”
For Larson, the runner-up finish continued his streak of either winning or finishing second in 15 straight races.
“You want to win, but when it’s an exciting race like that and you come up a little short, it’s still satisfying to be part of a good race like that,” Larson said.
“I thought I was running hard, but he was running a lot harder than I was,” Larson continued. “That was fun. We made contact once. I had no clue he was going to be there. After he got by me later, I was like he was running way harder than me and it made sense that we hit. I’ve gotten beat by him twice here in two different fashions. It was a really fun race. I saw Lance poke his nose a few times then Danny slid me. I felt good, I guess I needed to run a little harder. They’ve got so much more experience than me here. I think that’s where I get beat is in traffic. They know how to hit the bottom right and I’m not good at that yet.”
“We were a little too free,” Dewease said. “After the last time we were here, we were really bad here, real tight, and they were afraid to get it too tight. This is a new car for short tracks. It felt good all night. Really good balance. Those two guys are really good and if you’re off just a little, it shows up. We’ll take them against those guys. It was a heck of a good race. Danny wanted it pretty bad and he got it.”
Dewease, Rahmer and Rico Abreu completed the top five. Brock Zearfoss, Brent Marks, Ryan Smith, Lucas Wolfe and Alan Krimes rounded out the top 10.
The 51-car field was split into two qualifying flights. Lance Dewease set quick time in the first flight with a lap of 13.438 seconds. Dietrich was quick time in the second with a lap of 13.784 seconds.
The 10-lap heat races were won by Rahmer, Larson, Abreu and Wolfe, who took the lead on the final lap when Sammy Swindell did a 360-spin in turn two with a big lead. He kept going and finished second. Brad Howard won the C-main and Cale Thomas the B-main.
Sprint Car Feature (30 laps): 1. Danny Dietrich. 2. Kyle Larson. 3. Lance Dewease. 4. Freddie Rahmer. 5. Rico Abreu. 6. Brock Zearfoss. 7. Brent Marks. 8. Ryan Smith. 9. Lucas Wolfe. 10. Alan Krimes. 11. Brian Montieth. 12. Adam Wilt. 13. Sammy Swindell. 14. Jim Siegel. 15. Chase Dietz. 16. Chad Trout. 17. Kyle Moody. 18. Matt Campbell. 19. Cale Thomas. 20. Troy Wagaman. 21. TJ Stutts. 22. Landon Myers. 23. Kyle Reinhardt. 24. Jeff Halligan.