Maryland Short Track
Timonium Outdoor/ Gary Nixon Memorial Short Track Series
Round 4: Maryland State Fairgrounds
Story and Photos by Len and Ben Breech
TIMONIUM, MD, AUG. 8, 2014
Colton Smith closed out the fourth and final round of the 19th annual Gary Nixon Memorial Short Track Series with a pair of wins, topping the Open A and 450cc Sportsman A finals. Also taking a pair of wins at the Baltimore County Trail Riders/ Cockeysville Optimist Club-sponsored event were Nick Henderson, in the 250cc Sportsman and 150cc Adult classes, and Lowell Wherley, in the Over 40 and Over 50 finals.
Smith’s path was made a little easier in the Open A contest, as Cory Strickler and Kevin Bills “earned” tickets to the third line after a “slight” soil-sample party in the first turn, letting Smith have a clear shot at leading. He was followed by Jesse Long, Brandon Price and Jason Isennock. On lap two, Isennock displaced Price off turn two for third. Over the remaining laps, the front three ran nose to tail, but with no changes.
Strickler led Smith, Isennock and Long at the start of the 450cc Sportsman A final. Smith slipped under Strickler for the lead as they came off turn four to get the halfway flag, and he then kept his Robert Crabbe Racing/ Bromley’s Suzuki in front until the end.
While Smith was the big winner in the regular portion, Long took home the most money, as he took the added $500-to-win Ray Barnes Memorial Dash For Cash, for the top winners and runners-up from the previous three 450cc A races. Riders drew a “pill” for their starting position, after which Long, Isennock, Nick Henderson and Smith were on the front row.
At the flash of the green, Long took the lead, ahead of Isennock, Strickler and Smith. The order stayed the same to the end, with just enough space between them to prevent any heroics late in the race.
Henderson took the 150cc Adult lead, ahead of Jason Cole, Matt Langrehr, John Schwatka, Billy Sody and Samantha Resch. By halfway, Henderson had started pulling away, leaving Cole and Langrehr to battle for second, while Schwatka, Sody and Resch remained close in the fight for fourth. Cole took second, over Langrehr, and fourth went to Schwatka, over Sody and Resch.
Henderson again jumped into the early lead in the 250cc Sportsman clash, and started moving right away from Nathan Reichert, Colton Smith and Matt Langrehr. Smith had trouble getting by Reichert, but he finally got by going into turn one past the halfway point, but by then couldn’t do anything about Henderson’s margin.
Wherley jumped into the Over 40 lead, followed by Mike Sponseller, Damian Kocovinos, and hillclimber Phil Libhart, who was riding Wherley’s backup machine. Libhart started moving forward, taking third as they entered turn three on the second lap, and then second off turn two on the fourth lap. Once he was in second, he did cut into Wherley’s margin, but he ended up finishing about two bikelengths back.
The Over 50 contest win was easier, as Wherley took the lead ahead of Bill Kraft and Frank Primrose and stayed comfortably in the lead to the finish.
A pair of riders took their first wins on this night: Sean Simmons, in the Over 30 class, and Scotty Clark, in the Open B class.
Simmons grabbed the Over 30 holeshot, ahead of Sponseller, Kocovinos, Steve Lerch and Libhart. Lerch went inside for third on lap three and took second off turn two on the ninth lap.
Clark, a motocrosser, made his second start in this series, riding one of Strickler’s bikes. He took the Open B lead, ahead of Austin Wherley, Anthony Crabbe and Cameron Smith. The first four stayed very close for most of the race, until Cameron Smith clipped the wall on the back straight and fell. Crabbe got under Austin Wherley for second going into turn three on the eighth lap.
Since Crabbe and Colton Smith were riding the same machine, they had to hold up the start of the 450cc Sportsman B final while the crew changed a rear tire on the bike, since the A and B Sportsman finals were run back to back. The wait for Crabbe was worth it, as he took the lead from Cameron Smith, T.J. Irvin and Trevin Caruccio. However, going into turn one on the sixth lap, he fell, blocking the track and bringing out the red flag.
On the restart, Cameron Smith took the lead, ahead of Irvin and Austin Wherley. Crabbe did make it back up to fifth by the checkered flag.
Earlier, Crabbe had taken the 250cc B lead, ahead of Langrehr, Reichert, Tyler Eggleton and Caleb Scheide. Eggleton took third after the second lap and held it for most of the remainder of the race. “Most of!”: He drifted a little high off turn four on the ninth lap, letting Reichert by. However, he recovered and retook second off turn two on the final lap.
Another surprise came in the 125cc Two-Stroke/ 150cc Four-Stroke class, as Billy Sody took the lead, ahead of Jeremy Orr, Jason Cole and Matt Langrehr. With Sody safely in first, the next three shuffled second around. That led to Orr getting his front tapped and falling on the back straight. On the ninth lap, Sody’s run at the win snapped along with his chain on the back straight. Jason Cole took the win and Langrehr was runner-up. Melanie Siegel, Ben Bosley, Brandon Cretu and Nathan Reichert followed. Sody ended up seventh and Orr eighth.
Maryland State Fairgrounds
Results: August 8, 2014 (Round 4 of 4)
50 CHAIN DRIVE: 1. Javier Guevara (Con); 2. Dylan Dancy (KTM); 3. Riley West (Suz).
50 SHAFT DRIVE: 1. Dylan Dancy (Yam); 2. Aaden Johnson (Yam); 3. Javier Guevara (Yam).
65 (7-11): 1. Ethan Strickler (Kaw); 2. Britney Thomas (Suz).
85 (7-11): 1. Robert Wheatley (Hon).
125 2-STROKE/150 4-STROKE: 1. Jason Cole (Suz); 2. Matt Langrehr (Hon); 3. Melanie Siegel (Hon); 4. Ben Bosley (Hon); 5. Brandon Cretu (Hon); 6. Nathan Reichert (Hon); 7. Billy Sody (Hon); 8. Jeremy Orr (Kaw).
150 WOMEN: 1. Melanie Siegel (Hon); 2. Samantha Resch (Kaw); 3. Lisa Niner (Hon); 4. Nicole Henderson (Hon); 5. Samantha Cavanaugh (Yam); 6. Delaney Cadden (Suz).
150 YOUTH: 1. Samantha Cavanaugh (Yam); 2. Ethan Lewter (Hon).
150 ADULT: 1. Nick Henderson (Hon); 2. Jason Cole (Suz); 3. Matt Langrehr (Hon); 4. John Schwatka (Hon); 5. Billy Sody (Hon); 6. Samantha Resch (Kaw); 7. Ben Bosley (Hon); 8. Brandon Cretu (Hon); 9. Mike Webber (Hon).
250 B: 1. Anthony Crabbe (Suz); 2. Matt Langrehr (Kaw); 3. Tyler Eggleton (Hon); 4. Nathan Reichert (Kaw); 5. Joseph Scheide (Suz); 6. Kyle Smith (Suz); 7. Chris Johnson (Kaw); 8. T.J. Spampinato (Suz).
250 SPORTSMAN: 1. Nick Henderson (Hon); 2. Colton Smith (Suz); 3. Nathan Reichert (Kaw); 4. Colin Cunningham (Suz); 5. Matt Langrehr (Kaw).
450 SPORTSMAN A: 1. Colton Smith (Suz); 2. Jason Isennock (Hon); 3. Cory Strickler (Hon); 4. Jesse Long (Hon); 5. Brandon Price (Kaw); 6. Colin Cunningham (KTM); 7. Kevin Bills (Suz); 8. Nick Henderson (Hon); 9. Steve Lerch (Hon).
450 SPORTSMAN B: 1. Cameron Smith (Hon); 2. T.J. Irvin (Kaw); 3. Austin Wherley (Kaw); 4. Scotty Clark (Hon); 5. Anthony Crabbe (Suz); 6. Kyle Smith (Suz); 7. John Schwatka (Hon); 8. Trevin Caruccio (Kaw); 9. Becca Zafia (Suz); 10. John Diem (Yam).
OPEN A: 1. Colton Smith (Suz); 2. Jesse Long (Hon); 3. Jason Isennock (Hon); 4. Brandon Price (Kaw); 5. Cory Strickler (Hon); 6. Kevin Bills (Suz); 7. Derek Hersh (Hon); 8. Colin Cunningham (KTM).
OPEN B: 1. Scotty Clark (Hon); 2. Anthony Crabbe (Suz); 3. Austin Wherley (Kaw); 4. Trevin Caruccio (Kaw); 5. T.J. Irvin (Kaw); 6. Tyler Eggleton (Hon); 7. Sean Simmons (Kaw); 8. Chris Thomas (Hon); 9. Becca Zafia (Suz); 10. Cameron Smith (Hon).
30+: 1. Sean Simmons (Kaw); 2. Steve Lerch (Hon); 3. Mike Sponseller (Hon); 4. Damian Kocovinos (Hon); 5. Phil Libhart (Kaw); 6. Chris Johnson (Kaw).
40+: 1. Lowell Wherley (Kaw); 2. Phil Libhart (Kaw); 3. Mike Sponseller (Hon); 4. Damian Kocovinos (Hon); 5. Bill Kraft (Hon); 6. Jim Blair (Suz).
50+: 1. Lowell Wherley (Kaw); 2. Bill Kraft (Hon); 3. Frank Primrose (Hon).
VINTAGE: 1. Bill Kraft (Hon); 2. Chris Abb (Yam); 3. Adam Stelmack (Yam); 4. Kyle Oxford (Suz).
RAY BARNES $500 DASH FOR CASH: 1. Jesse Long (Hon); 2. Jason Isennock (Hon); 3. Cory Strickler (Hon); 4. Colton Smith; 5. Brandon Price (Kaw).