Paulie Hartwig III edges Brody George in 602 Crate Duel Track Series action at Mahoning Valley Speedway; Brian Romig Jr., collects career first win in Late Models

Race #3 of the Evergreen Raceway/Mahoning Valley Speedway Duel Track Series (DTS) for the 602 Crate Modifieds presented by Bruce George Paving & Excavating Inc., took place at Mahoning on Saturday evening and saw a pair of young and talented rising stars battle for the checkers. Taking the victory was Paulie Hartwig III over Brody George.

Hartwig, by luck of a redraw, had the pole and would have George lined up behind him in third for the start of the 40-lap contest.

As the action commenced so too did the tight battle between them as they raced in close formation lap after lap with Hartwig leading the way and George constantly nipping at his heels and at other times pulling alongside him in an attempt to get by. Each challenge though the 12-year old Hartwig held his line and was able to keep 14-year old George at bay.

Aside from his futile attempts during the green flag runs, George also had opportunities on restarts to move ahead but with no more than one lap back underway Hartwig was able to gain his momentum and continue with his lead.

It would play out to two very equally matched cars racing hard for the win and in the end it was Hartwig utilizing better track position in gaining the victory over George, who was the previous DTS front-runner at Evergreen. Bobby Jones, Jaden Brown and Neil Rutt III rounded out the top five.

            For the second time in as many races with the Late Models a first time winner emerged, this time Brian Romig Jr., claiming the unforgettable conquest.

            Romig took to the lead at the get-go and would soon have previous week winner Mark Hudson and point leader Nick Ross pressuring down on him. As Hudson and Ross raced back and forth for second they also tried looking every way possible to advance by Romig but he was having none of that.

            Doing a great job of holding his line against them he stayed the course with his focus on one thing, winning. A third generation driver, Romig was euphoric when exiting his car and rightfully so as he drove to a deserving and well-earned verdict. Ross settled for second with Hudson third.

            The Street Stocks came out in full force in support of the annual Mike Krempasky Memorial, a race held in honor of the late championship car owner. With additional monies and perks at stake a season high 27 cars were on hand for the 50-lap feature.

Despite the fact that there was a field filled with potential winners, none could match the strong performance of Jillian Snyder who raced out front the entire distance. At times Snyder was able to pull ahead to several car lengths over the pack as her No. 97 was clearly the car with the upper hand.

            This was also a “cone race” which gave drivers the opportunity to choose where they restarted after cautions and although several worthy opponents lined up next to her each time, there would be no denying her authority once the action resumed. The last driver to try and make a run at her would be Randy Ahner Jr., who did stay on her rear bumper over the closing laps but could only follow her to the finish and remain in second spot.

            Eric Kocher, Johnny Bennett and TJ Gursky rounded out the top five. Snyder is the ninth different winner in as many races this season.

            For Lyndsay Buss her career first win was long overdue and on this night she finally bagged the elusive victory in the Harry’s U-Pull-It Hobby Stocks.

            Buss darted into the lead at the drop of the green and then withstood an onslaught of strikes to be unseated from Jake Kibler and Travis Solomon.

Buss had been in the same close fights in the past only to see her chances slip from her fingers but there was nothing doing this time. Driven by sheer determination she never wavered and held on for a hugely crowd pleasing outcome.

In the Futures Russ Briener was also a first winner. He was leading after the first lap and continued to do so the rest of the way, just nipping Adam Heckman at the checkers.

Jeff Kot took the win with the East Coast TQ Midgets. It was Kot’s third time winning with a TQ at Mahoning but first doing so wingless.

Tyler Wagner was on his way to winning the Modified Outlaw Micro Stock feature when on the final lap he tangled with a lapped car and popped his chain. Tom Ervin, who had led early on, was second at the time and dashed by the slowing Wagner and then onto the victory.


602 Crate Modified feature finish (40 laps): 1. Paulie Hartwig III, 2. Brody George, 3. Bobby Jones, 4. Jaden Brown, 5. Zach Lenardo, 6. Neil Rutt III, 7. Brian Rygielski, 8. Jayden Harman, 9. Deegen Underwood, 10. Troy Bollinger, 11. Greyson Ahner, 12. Nick Baer, 13. Rick Smith, 14. Evan Rygielski, 15. Mike Pollack, 16. Braden Sullivan, 17. Makayla Kohler

Late Model feature finish (25 laps): 1. Brian Romig Jr., 2. Nick Ross, 3. Mark Hudson, 4. Seth VanFossen, 5. Mike VanFossen, 6. Brian Sones, 7. Dave Imler Sr.

Street Stock feature finish (50 laps): 1. Jillian Snyder, 2. Randy Ahner Jr., 3. Eric Kocher, 4. Johnny bennett, 5. TJ Gursky, 6. Jamie Smith, 7. Rick Reichenbach, 8. Jacob Christman, 10. Cody Geist, 11. Jon Moser, 12. Logan Boyer, 13. Geary Rinehimer Jr., 14. Jacob Boehm, 15. Todd Ahner, 16. Mark Martini, 17. Rich Moser Jr., 18. Kyle Strohl, 19. Thomas Flanagan, 20. Tommy Flanagan DNQ: Adam Santee, Tucker Muffley, Bobby Kibler Jr., Lorin Arthofer II, Jeremy Scheckler, Josh Kuronya, Franke Althouse

Hobby Stock feature finish (25 laps): 1. Lyndsay Buss, 2. Travis Solomon, 3. Jake Kibler, 4. Shayne Geist, 5. Cody Boehm, 6. Corey Edelman, 7. Jared Frye, 8. Maggie Yeakel, 9. Nicholas Kerstetter, 10.  Larry Spencer III, 11. Parker Ahner, 12. Don Bauder, 13. Dave Kerr, 14. Mallory Kutz, 15. BJ Wambold, 16. Michael Wambold, 17. David Imler Jr., 18. James Tout

Futures feature finish (15 laps): 1. Russ Briener, 2. Adam Heckman, 3. Sarabeth Mesko. 4. Adam Steigerwalt, 5. Chaz Takacs, 6. Rodney Breiner, 7. Arland Moyer Jr., 8. Al Gildner, 9. Michael Klotz, 10. Gabrielle Steigerwalt

ECTQM feature finish (20 laps): 1. Jeff Kot, 2. Josh Paterson, 3. Tyler Wagner, 4. Don Zirinski, 5. Richie Coy, 6. Lexi Prysblinski, 7. Ozzy Carlino, 8. Brandon Kressler, 9. David Williams

Micro stock feature finish (12 laps):.1. Tom Ervin, 2. Kyle Bostick, 3. Brian Russell, 4. Jim VanDine, 5. Tyler Wagner, 6. Mike Haskins, 7. Scott Fox DNS: John Paulsen, Al Puntesecca