NEW EGYPT, NJ – Davie Franek came, saw and conquered on Tuesday night at New Egypt Speedway
Franek, the Wantage, N.J., driver who races at Selinsgrove (Pa.) Speedway and on the road with the United Racing Company (URC), dominated the inaugural Pioneer Pole Buildings Inc. ‘Turnpike 25’ for 360 Sprint Cars. The event was run as half of a heavy-hitting doubleheader with the Super DIRTcar Series big-block Modifieds promoted by the Friesen-Deyo Promotions partnership of star driver Stewart Friesen and special events organizer Brett Deyo.
While unsanctioned, the 360 Sprint Car program was guided by Lucas Oil Empire Super Sprints (ESS) officials Dean Reynolds and John Tiff Jr. A strong field of 25 cars turned out to compete on the racy 7/16ths-mile D-shaped facility.
Franek earned $3,125 in cash ($3,000 from the posted purse and $125 in lap money) for his efforts in the 25-lap main. He also received guaranteed starting berths in the Tuesday, July 16 ‘Night of Wings III’ at Bridgeport (N.J.) Speedway and the Cole Cup Sept. 6 to be held at Gene Cole’s Utica-Rome (N.Y.) Speedway. Both events offer $500 just to take the green flag.
“This is awesome,” an enthused Franek said after climbing to the wing of his car before the large crowd. “It feels really good to be able to win an event like this. There was a lot of talent in the pits tonight.”
Franek started second and led the entire distance. But the conquest didn’t come without obstacles including a red flag on the fifth lap and a slew of late-race traffic.
Robbie Stillwaggon of Burlington, N.J., who started fifth, closed dramatically on Franek in the final five laps but fell just shy of the checkered, placing second. Kyle Reinhardt of Neptune City, N.J., finished third after starting sixth. Brian Carber of Pipersville, Pa., and 10th-starter Curt Michael of Ocean View, Del., completed the front five.
Event co-promoter Friesen of Sprakers, N.Y., driving his fiancee Jessica Zemken’s back-up car, advanced from 15thto place sixth.
Heat winners were Stillwaggon, Tyler Ross and Carber. The top-three finishers in each heat event transferred to the redraw.
NEW EGYPT NOTES: Franek, incidentally, was a participant in the first-ever Brett Deyo-promoted Modified event – the inaugural Short Track SuperNationals – held in Oct. 2006 at N.Y.’s Afton Speedway (he finished fifth). Now, Franek has entered his name in the history books as the first BD Motorsports Media/Friesen-Deyo Promotions 360 Sprint Car victor….
Expected contender Greg Hodnett was charging toward the front until apparent rear end issues sidelined his Mike Heffner-owned No. 27 on the 16th lap….
The race’s only red was displayed when contact sent Jessica Zemken spinning in turn four. Anthony Fiore, left with no escape, overturned his car lightly. Both drivers continued….
Pioneer Pole Buildings Inc. 360 Sprint Car ‘Turnpike 25’ Results: DAVIE FRANEK ($3,125), Robbie Stillwaggon, Kyle Reinhardt, Brian Carber, Curt Michael, Stewart Friesen, Ryan Smith, Justin Barger, Kyle Purks, Mark Bitner, Josh Weller, Jessica Zemken, Neal Williams, Tommy Wickham, Shawn Donath, Art Liedl, Jonathan Swanson, Jeff Fithian, Troy Betts, Anthony Fiore, Tyler Ross, Randy West, Greg Hodnett, Eddie Wagner, Brad Franks.
Pioneer Pole Buildings Inc. ‘Turnpike 25’ 360 Sprint Car Awards Summary
Lap Money ($575 Total): Davie Franek ($125), Brian Carber ($125), Robbie Stillwaggon ($125), Kyle Reinhardt ($75), Stewart Friesen ($50), Greg Hodnett ($50), Justin Barger ($25), Tyler Ross (25-week Area Auto Racing Newssubscription)
American Racer/Lias Tire Incentive (Free Tire): Robbie Stillwaggon (second)
Bridgeport Speedway July 16 ‘Night of Wings’ Guaranteed Starting Position: Davie Franek
REAL Eyewear Bonus (sunglasses): Davie Franek
Thayer Performance Aero Wings Incentives ($25 Certificates): Justin Barger (eighth), Josh Weller (11th), Neal Williams (13th), Shaw