Fan Notes from Attica Ambush Night #1 9-1-17

Saturday, September 9, 2017
 Brandon Hanks Brandon Hanks (Tom Myers) 9/1/17 Attica, Ohio – What distracts a person all day, causing them to leave work early and spend more money than they should on gas and food and apparel? What makes a person want to sit outside on hard bleachers with rowdy drunks who cuss and swear and throw things in front of your wife and kids? What would make a person want to drive all day among the corn fields of the Midwest and then drive back home in the middle of the night with their ears ringing and their eyes, ears and clothes full of dirt? What possibly could prompt a kid to make up a musical jingle…and use the name of a racetrack in the lyrics of this made-up song? ( think East Bay Raceway ) The answer is sprint cars. And more sprint cars. And then some more sprint cars. And just think of it…….four sprint car features scheduled over three days at two tracks close to my house on one Labor Day weekend….it is almost too much excitement to handle!

The first race on the schedule for this Labor Day weekend was the $5000 to win Attica Ambush opener sanctioned by the FAST series at Attica Raceway Park. The weather was cool and breezy and it feels like fall has come early here in Ohio. Attica always does a great job with track prep and also with the organization of the event. They are a well oiled machine and this evening was no different. The track was tacky and the program went quickly and efficiently. There were 32 winged 410 sprint cars and 37 super late models on hand. The racing started at 7:45 as advertized…..and the sprint car A- main was over at 9:45!
Broc MartinBroc Martin The FAST format was used and I like it. It’s simple and the program moves along. Three sprints at a time took to the track to hot lap and then qualify. The fastest qualifiers were 1.70-Carson Macedo, 12.128; 2.11N-Craig Mintz, 12.208; 3.57X-Andrew Palker, 12.276; 4.83-Rob Chaney, 12.294; 5.17-Dale Blaney, 12.320; 6.45L-Brian Lay, 12.363; 7.97-Broc Martin, 12.367; 8.23-DJ Foos, 12.378; 9.5R-Byron Reed, 12.395; 10.68G-Tyler Gunn. Macedo was driving the Pete Grove blue 70 car and Dale Blaney was in the Josh Baughman 17 car. Josh was unable to get a flight from Texas because of the hurricane so Dale drove his car all weekend. All the drivers used the top of the track and rather quickly a tall cushion developed. The track was tacky and stayed that way all evening…helped by the cool temperature no doubt.

The heats were pretty good and featured some rough driving. The top 5 transferred into the feature. In heat 1, the finish was Jody Keegan, Cap Henry, Justin Peck, Brady Bacon and Cole Duncan. Dean Jacobs had a transfer spot but Henry played rough and “bumped” Dean out of his line and Jacobs ended up missing the transfer. Bacon and Peck also battled back and forth for a few laps. Heat 2 finish was Travis Philo, Tim Shaffer, Chris Andrews, Dan McCarren and Duane Zablicki. In heat 3, there was a torrid battle in the middle of the pack as Brian Lay ran away for the win. The finish was Lay, Tyler Gunn, Dale Blaney, Joey Saldana and Stuart Brubaker. On the last lap, Macedo slowed as he ran out of fuel and missed a transfer spot. The heat 4 finish was Rob Chaney, Broc Martin, Craig Mintz, Andrew Paulker, and Byron Reed. The B main was won by D.J. Foos, who was followed by Macedo, Dean Jacobs, Shawn Valenti and Lee Jacobs. There was some rough driving in this one too as Foos used a slide job and some contact on Dean Jacobs to get by him on his way to the front. The track was still tacky so aggressiveness was often the only way to make a pass.
Tim Shaffer won Night #1 of the Attica AmbushTim Shaffer won Night #1 of the Attica Ambush The feature lined up with Lay and Mintz at the front. Chaney and Henry were in row 2 and Paulker and Shaffer started in row 3. As the race started, Mintz grabbed the lead with Henry and Lay not far behind. Peck stalled on lap one and on the restart, Henry grabbed the lead from Mintz. Lay then passed Mintz too as Craig’s right rear torsion bar stop loosened…. causing the car to lean to the right. Mintz stopped on lap 4 causing another yellow. Lay then pulled away and led until the next yellow for Philo on lap 14. Lay then led again as Shaffer was moving up to pass Henry. Chaney and Broc Martin and Paulker were not far behind. Gunn then stopped with 8 laps to go and that brought out another yellow. On the restart Shaffer pressured Lay for the lead and Chaney got a good run and passed up to third but then slid off the turn and came to a stop with 5 laps to go. On the restart, Lay’s car stumbled as he was running low on fuel and Shaffer passed him for the win. Broc Martin ended up in second followed by Byron Reed, Joey Saldana and Andrew Paulker. Martin came up from 7th, Reed from 14th, Saldana from 17th and Paulker maintained his 5th starting position…. a good run against tough competition.

Shaffer starts the weekend off right grabbing $5000. Will he win the All Star Speedweek make up feature tomorrow…and the $3500 bonus that goes with it? And will he win the $10000 Dirt Classic feature as well?

Thank you Attica Raceway Park. We will see you again tomorrow!