Still wandering around the pits, I saw Rick Ferkel, he looked to be helping out with Max Stambaugh and the 97 car. One of the 305 drivers had the coolest helmet, looking exactly like the Ohio State black helmets they wear once a year. It was flat black with the red and white stripe and red buckeye leaves on it, nice job. The driver joked with me that he needed more buckeye leaves on it…and we both knew he meant winning more races. I also walked over to Cody Bova’s car, a sharp looking car, and started talking with Cody’s mechanic about the nice paint scheme on the car and the FAST series and some other things. Well the mechanic’s name is Scott Priester, a name familiar with western PA race fans, as Scott raced sprints for 30 years or so. Thanks for chatting with me Scott and good job helping Cody start on the front row of the Jim Ford Classic tonight!
Multi-time Ford race winner Tim Shaffer was also on hand driving the Gorby 1G car. Tim was the previous evening’s winner and was looking to add another win to his resume. Jac Haudenschild was absent tonight, having blown his motor the previous evening. Parker Price Miller was here in the Indy Parts 71 as was newly crowned Fremont track champion Buddy Kofoid, who won his first midget race the evening before driving a Keith Kunz machine. Six time All Star champion Chad Kemenah was on hand as well as FAST series points leader Cole Duncan. Other notables in the pits were Cale Conley, Cap Henry, D,J, Foos, Byron Reed, and Hunter Schuerenburg.
During time trials, the racers all used the same line up high and they created a groove where the right rear spun out the dirt…and as a result a ledge developed. Well it just got taller as the evening went along and it made a difference in the feature. Time trials were exciting because the cars only got one lap and when they finally got the time trials started, the cars were under the lights. The cars got faster as the session went on, so when a car would set the fast time, a couple cars later another racer would set the fast time and the crowd was really into it. The fast timer for the session was the last car out, Cale Conley. The second fastest timer was Brandon Long from Texas. Who’s Brandon Long? I don’t know, but he had a black and blue car with orange lettering and he races good. Third fastest was Price Miller.
Before the heats started, a younger fellow sitting right in front of me started talking with me, asking some questions. He tells me he lives in Minnesota and he and his father have been long time sprint car fans. He said he is currently working in Ontario, Canada and made the trip down to Fremont to check it out, this being his first time here. After he asked about other Ohio tracks, I told him about the following weekend’s Four Crown race at Eldora because he has never been there either and we all know that’s a bucket list track, along with Fremont of course. Did you know it was Fremont’s 68th year of operation this year? Wow! Anyway, the fellow’s name is Tracy, and he’s a crane operator who evidently, travels around to different construction projects as needed. We had a great time talking racing all evening. Thank you Tracy, it was nice to meet you! Tracy told me he recently made it to Knoxville for a weekly show, his first time there. He said he gets to Jackson Motorplex quite often. Tracy, maybe we will see you next Saturday at Eldora!
The heats were pretty much follow the leader but there were a few exceptions. The 8 lap heats transferred the top 4 finishers to the A main and the top 3 would get their times back to line them up for the A. The first heat finish was Cody Bova, Landon Lalande, Travis Philo and 7th starting Bell. Bell was fortunate in that Philo ran into 3rd running Cale Conley on lap 6 and Conley had to retire to the pits, moving Bell up to 5th behind Lee Jacobs. On the restart Bell got past Jacobs and into a transfer spot. In the 2nd heat, Buddy Kofoid checked out with Brandon Spithaler coming home second, Brad Lamberson third and Brandon Long finishing 4th.