Monday, September 20, 2021

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4 for 4: Billy Schwartzenburg scores feature victory at Sunset Speedway

Saturday night’s mini stock feature will certainly go down as a classic as Billy Schwartzenburg outdueled Andy Kamrath to become the fourth different feature winner so far this year.

The night kicked off with Rory Collett won the opening heat ahead of Ben Melenhorst, Billy Melenhorst, Benjamin Wolf, Nic Montanari, Stefan Woyslaw, Doug Wilman, Chris Free, Brian Johnston, Candiss Everingham and Dave Middel.

The second heat didn’t go well for everyone as Shawn Gerrior pulled off on lap five with mechanical issues. Schwartzenburg took the victory ahead of Warren Paxton, Eric Yorke, Connor James, Miles Tyson, Terry Woodley, Brian Love, TJ Edwards, Wendy Adams and Connor Bois.

Kamrath won the final heat ahead of Samantha Shaw, Brandon McFerran, Jordan Howse, Lauren Haliday, Gerrit Tiemersma, Kendra Adams, Jake Watson, Steve Belanger, Jerry Noble and Steve Love.

The first qualifier race wouldn’t start off smoothly as Edwards would go around right on the drop of the green, leaving Kendra Adams with no place to go. Adams problems only got worse as she spun around in turn two on lap two. Halliday would go on to take the win ahead of Belanger, Montanari, Woodley, Adams, Wilman, Edwards, Johnston, Middel, Steve Love and Bois. As a result, Middel, Love and Bois would fail to qualify for the main event.

The second qualifier didn’t go smoothly either as Free would spin on the opening lap in turn four, while Gerrior would spin in turn two on lap four. Brian Love’s bad luck would continue as he would lose power to bring out the third caution at lap eight. Last week’s feature winner Miles Tyson went on to win the race ahead of Tiemersma, Watson, Ken Townsend, Gerrior, Woyslaw, Noble, Everingham, Free and Wendy Adams. Tyson had an adventurous day as he debuted his new car in practice, only to break the clutch; Tyson then hurried home and picked up his old car and made it back for the start of Fan Appreciation festivities. Unfortunately with their race results, Free, Adams and Love would fail to qualify for the main event.

Ben Melenhorst looked fast in the Dash for Cash, however saw his race end early as he made significant contact with the outside wall at lap six after going three-wide with McFerran and Shaw. Schwartzenburg grabbed the win ahead of Kamrath, Paxton, Collett, Billy Melenhorst, McFerran, Yorke, Shaw, James, Wolf and Howse.

The drivers who did not qualify for the main event would get to run the “Little Feature” – a 10 lap race for some extra pride. After fighting mechanical issues and a first night wreck, Brian Love took top honors ahead of Free, Wendy Adams, Steve Love and Bois.

With qualifying in the books and the help of a random draw by the top qualifiers, the field would be set for the 50 lap feature. Jordan Howse would draw ‘1’ to put his No. 72 Glen Windrew Trucking and Howse Automotive Mustang on pole. Benjamin Wolfe would start second ahead of Connor James, Brandon McFerran, Nic Montanari, Samantha Shaw, Jake Watson, Steve Belanger, Billy Schwartzenburg, Eric Yorke, Gerrit Tiemersma, Andy Kamrath, Rory Collett and Billy Melenhorst. Miles Tyson would start 15th as last week’s feature winner ahead of Warren Paxton, Lauren Halliday, Terry Woodley, Shawn Gerrior, Kendra Adams, Ken Townsend, TJ Edwards, Stefan Woyslaw, Doug Wilman, Jerry Noble, Brian Johnston, Candiss Everingham and Dave Middel.

The start wouldn’t go smoothly for those at the front as James would get into Howse, resulting in the rookie going around. Both drivers would get moved to the rear of the field, handing the pole over to Wolfe in his No. 72 Mustang for the second attempt at getting the race going.

The second attempt would go smoother with Brandon McFerran quickly putting his No. 64 Peter D. Laird, Fast End Car Wash, Epic Racewear, Roadranger, Finish Line Painting and Restoring,, Meisner Construction, NRD Bi Products Ltd., AMD & Sons Electric Ltd. and Fast Eddie Racewear Mustang in the first spot. The green flag wouldn’t last long, though, with the caution flying on lap two for Montanari spinning Paxton.

McFerran would get a good restart, pulling ahead once again as Shaw battled Wolfe for second. Shaw would clear Wolfe on lap three, only to get Kamrath beside her for the spot. Kamrath cleared Shaw for second at lap four, leaving Shaw to battle with her Spira Racing teammate Schwartzenburg for third.

Trouble would strike mid-pack when Townsend slowed with problems. He wouldn’t be the only driver running into issues, as Tyson suffered the same fate a lap later. While both drivers fought their issues, Kamrath would put his No. 35, Jason Witty Re/Max Realty, AM Roofing, Blue Mountain Honda and CB Services of Bolton Civic out front on lap seven ahead of Schwartzenburg, McFerran, Shaw, Yorke, Wolfe, Belanger, Tiemersma, Halliday, Billy Melenhorst and Collett.

Schwartzenburg would make his move on Kamrath and take the lead just before the caution flew at lap 10 for James losing power in turn three.  With 15 to go,Schwartzenburg would restart his No. 86 Spira Fire Protection, Lucas Oil, Guelph Wish Fund, Victim Services, Chetty’s Hot Sauce, Inside Track, Wix Filters, Plastikote, Nuco, Pro Treadz, Erb & Erb Insurance, Artic Ice (Cambridge), Conestoga Roofing, Dave Frank’s Photos, Dominion Sure Seal, Eastside Auto Service, Fleet Image, Gunk, Klotz Auto Repair, Process Group, Race Time Radio, R&R Cycle, Roof Trusses & Components Ltd., Vitaulic and Woseley Mustang on the inside of the front row beside Kamrath. McFerran would restart third followed by Shaw, Yorke, Wolfe, Belanger, Tiemersma, Halliday, Billy Melenhorst, Collett, Gerrior, Watson, Howse, Paxton, Adams, Woodley, Wilman, Woyslaw, Townsend, Noble, Edwards, Everingham, Montanari, Johnston, Tyson and Middel.

The first attempt at a restart wouldn’t go smoothly as McFerran would go for a spin due to a flat tire.

The second attempt went smoother with Kamrath grabbing the lead ahead of Schwartzenburg, Yorke, Shaw and Belanger while Melenhorst and Halliday battled for sixth. James would pit under green at lap 13 while Melenhorst would pass Halliday to move into sixth.

As the laps continued to add up, Kamrath’s lead expanded – though he also found himself catching the rear of the field. It wasn’t smooth sailing getting by lap traffic, which allowed Schwartzenburg to close the gap between the pair. As Kamrath went to put Montanari a lap down, Schwartzenburg made his move, setting them up three-wide. Contact would be made across the board, resulting in Kamrath getting all sorts sideways. As a result, Schwartzenburg would cruise by to grab the lead while Kamrath held on to his civic to keep the second spot.

From that point on, it was all Billy Schwartzenburg as he cruised to the feature victory. The win will help towards a good cause as Schwartzenburg and Spira Racing have committed to donating all the winnings equally to Guelph Wish Fund for Children and Victim Services Wellington in support of the Spira-Fire Victims Relief Fund. Andy Kamrath finished second, followed by Eric Yorke, Samantha Shaw, Billy Melenhorst, Steve Belanger, Lauren Halliday, Warren Paxton, Benjamin Wolfe, Jordan Howse, Brandon McFerran, Rory Collett, Gerrit Tiemersma, Jake Watson, Ken Townsend, Kendra Adams, Miles Tyson, Jerry Noble, Terry Woodley, Stefan Woyslaw, TJ Edwards and Nic Montanari.

Please note that these results are unofficial as they are done per my own notes. For that reason, please check with the track for the official results.

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