A record number of Legends cars made their way to Bethel Motor Speedway this weekend for the 50-lap, $1,500-to-win LegendStock 2010 INEX qualifier race. A total of 46 cars were on hand – from as far away as Maryland, North Carolina, Texas, and Minnesota – attempting to qualify for the 24-car A main and their shot at the three-foot tall guitar-shaped trophies that have become a trademark of the event.
Last year, Daniel Hemric made the trip up from North Carolina and dominated the show by setting fast time and taking down the overall win. From the start of the day, the 19-year-old made it obvious that he would not settle for any less than a repeat of his success, in spite of the increased competition.
Hemric did, indeed, give a repeat performance. He set fast time, in spite of the fact that six cars aside from him broke the track record he set in 2009. He started tenth in his heat race and came through the entire field to win that race.
After the A main, Hemric commented, “Dan Snyder had the car prepared really well tonight and we came out just like we did last year and we set fast time. The car maintained really good up until about 20 (laps) to go and we got a little tight but all in all the car maintained and we were able to pull away and come home with another guitar.”
Based on the invert, Hemric took off from the eighth starting spot. The first half of the race was a heated battle up front between Justin Petcosky and Thomas Hartensveld Jr., who ran first and second. Just one lap shy of the halfway point of the event, Hemric turned up the heat and grabbed the lead. From that point on, Hemric took advantage of flawless restarts and skillful driving to keep the field behind him. Thirteen-year-old Texas native Bayley Currey followed Hemric across the line. Hartensveld Jr. came across the line third, and Jimmy Heavlow and Tim Brockhouse completed the top five.
In the JTR Enterprises Bandolero class, Jordan Lamothe took full advantage of his pole starting spot, leading every lap of the feature on the way to his sixth win this season. Anthony Riforgiato was second, with Taylor Hurban third.
Greg McCloskey may have led only a single lap of the Alcaro & Alcaro Plating Sportsman feature, but he made sure it was the one that counted as the checkered flag was waving in the air. Mike Houghtaling and Dan Conklin followed him across the line.
In the Sam’s Towing Pro Stock feature, Charlie Howe Jr. was in the right place at the right time to grab the lead and drive on to his second win of the season. Four-time 2010 feature winner Ken Atkins chased Howe Jr. before being passed by Bobby Policastro at the halfway point of the event. Howe Jr. drove on to the win, followed by Policastro and Atkins.
In just his third 2010 start, Rich Winters collected his first feature win in the Jeff Bank 4 Cylinder Senior class. Paul Curry finished second, and Patty Falkena crossed the line third.