Gault Becomes Leading Winner at Motordrome
(Smithton, PA) – On Friday July 25, 2014, Glenn Gault, Jr. of Hubbard, Ohio, became the only driver to win four NASCAR Late Model features this season. Adam Kostelnik won for the first time in 2014 in the Modified division, while A.J. Poljak (Street Stocks), Anthony Aiello (Chargers), and Kyle Komarinski (Subway Super Compacts) continued recent trends of winning in the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series, as Y108 broadcasted live from the track.
The 40-lap NASCAR Late Model feature started with two-time winner Bobby Henry taking the lead. Matt Sever, also a two-time winner, held second place for two laps until Neil Brown became the runner-up. Brown, the 2012 Motordrome Champion, won the heat race earlier in the night, while making only his second start of the season. On lap seven, Brown was challenged by recent winner Mark Poole, who started in the sixth place. Poole took second place from Brown on lap eight, and immediately began to reduce the lead interval that had been built up by former Champion Henry. On lap 16, the lead changed hands, as Poole roared by Henry. Poole’s only win of the season was a dominating performance, but one week after, he failed to finish in the top five. While Poole was leading, seventh place starter, Glenn Gault, Jr. was also advancing. On lap 17, Gault moved around Henry for the runner-up spot. Gault and Henry recently tangled while fighting for a win, in the closing laps of a feature event. But Gault ran away from Henry right after the pass for second, and started to reel in Poole. On lap 26, Gault made the winning pass, quickly taking the lead from Poole, and building a comfortable interval over the field. But, with two laps to go, Brown stopped on the track, bringing out a caution and surrendering a top five position. With Poole alongside for the restart, Gault blasted into turn one to maintain his lead, and take the checkered flag for the second week in a row. The former Lake Erie Speedway Champion, Gault, is the son of a former Motordrome Champ, and is now the only driver to win four times this season in the NASCAR Late Models. In 2013, Gault won a special event at Motordrome, and, now as leading winner this year, should be favored to take the big paycheck in the crown-jewel event coming August 8, the “TruPar 100.” Behind Gault’s Tabone Snow King Roof Systems/Lennox Heating and Cooling Chevy, Poole, Henry, Steve Black and John Komarinski were the top five finishers.
Harry Opfer was a winner of multiple Modified division features before he hung up the helmet, over five years ago. Opfer returned in 2014, and in his third race of the year, took the lead after starting on the pole of the 25-lap main event. A crash on lap five damaged five cars, including brothers Bobby and Bryan Shipp, and previous week’s winner Dustin Blank. Opfer set the pace for seven laps before Adam Kostelnik took the lead. Kostelnik, who led much of the previous week’s Street Stock feature en route to a second place finish, is racing on a part-time basis in the Mods during 2014. Kostelnik is a six time Champion of the Modified division, and after taking the green flag in sixth position, he cruised to his first victory of the year at Motordrome. After a heated battle for a distant second place, Opfer crossed the line ahead of former Champion Chris Brink. Defending Champ, Matt Smith, recovered from the crash to place fourth, just behind Brink while 2014 feature winner Greg Staggers placed fifth. Smith and points leader Blank won the heats.
Making his 2014 debut, Mike Holp started the 25-lap Street Stock feature from the pole position, and on the first lap cars raced three-wide throughout the field more than once. The chaos allowed Scott Aiello to move from fourth place to first place in just one lap. Defending Champ A.J. Poljak started sixth, and took second place from Zane Ferrell on lap two. Aiello held the lead until the ninth circuit, when Poljak took command of the race. Andrew Kostelnik, the younger of the Kostelnik racing brothers, moved into second place, after winning the heat race and starting in fifth position. Kostelnik touched Poljak’s rear bumper several times in the middle stages of the race, but after two restarts, Kostelnik was unable to become the second winner in the division. Poljak remained undefeated, sweeping three months of feature races, after two weeks of serious threats to his “perfect” season. Aiello, Ryan Escott, and Holp finished third through fifth.
Rookie and two-time winner Stephen Shelpman started the 15-lap Charger feature from the pole position. Shelpman took the lead at the start with Ron Eiford, III in pursuit. On lap five, points leader Anthony Aiello became the runner up to Shelpman, after he started the race in sixth position. With just five laps to go, Aiello made the winning pass, taking the lead and earning another victory in his best-career season. Recent first time feature winner, Chad Gorring, started eighth after winning a heat, and took second place from Shelpman with three laps to go. Shelpman scored a third place finish, with Eiford in fourth position when the checkered flag waved. Roger Bryan earned a top five finish, after winning his heat race earlier in the night.
Angie Kimberly led the first lap of the Subway Super Compacts’ 15-lap feature, before she tangled with points leader Paul Koffler, Jr. on lap two. Multi-feature winner Aaron Van Fleet then toured the oval for six laps in front of the pack. On lap eight, Van Fleet’s good friend, Kyle Komarinski made a pass for the lead. Komarinski struggled, winless through the first half of 2014, but swept the previous weekend of Compact racing, scoring his first two victories Friday and Saturday. In spite of a late race restart, with Van Fleet alongside, Komarinski earned his third overall win in three straight starts – and second of the year at Motordrome. Van Fleet, three time winner Mark Tringes, Jr., rookie Chris Richter, and Koffler completed the top five. Tringes and Komarinski won the heats.
Next Friday at Motordrome is “Pack The Track” night presented by 102.5 WDVE, offering general admission tickets to all fans for ONLY $1.02, along with $ 6 Reserved Seating. All five divisions of the NASCAR Whelen All-American Series will be in action. Race time is 7:30pm.