Pennsylvania Short Track
Path Valley Speedway
Story and Photos by Len Breech and Ben Breech
SPRING RUN, PA. APR. 9
Led by Tyler’s first Expert win in just his second start as an Expert-rated rider, the Mullen twins, Tyler and Zach, each scored an Open-class win as Path Valley Speedway managed to break its “weather jinx” and hosted its first motorcycle race since 2015. Zach scored the Open B win, while Tyler held off a tightly bunched field to take the Open A final. Both finished a close second against basically the same groups of riders in the 450cc Sportsman divisions.
Tyler took the lead in the Open A contest, ahead of Cameron Smith, Ryan Varnes, D.J. Slosser and Austin Greenland. Tyler managed to just stay in front of the snarling pack behind and beside him. Normally, the clay car tracks in this area develop into a blue groove in afternoon races, but by the time the finals came to the line, two distinct lines had developed: one low in the turns, and another, wider one halfway up the track. Tyler stayed low most of the time as the others swapped positions among themselves. Late in the race, Smith drifted slightly high off turn four, letting Varnes slip into second.
Ken Kolsovsky Jr. led Zach Mullen, Grant Shafer, Damon Ream and Brett Johnson at the start of the Open B final, but Zach took the lead going into turn three on the second lap. Behind the two front-runners, Shafer fell off turn two, shuffling the others behind him. Kolsovsky stayed close for the remainder of the race.
Tyler looked like he was going to score a double in the 450cc Sportsman A contest, leading Smith, Slosser and Greenland off the second turn. But coming off turn four on the third lap, Smith got a better drive and took the lead going into turn one. Slosser, riding one of Greenland’s machines, and Greenland battled back and forth, with Greenland edging past Slosser late in the race. By that time, Varnes had joined the fray, but he couldn’t get by either rider.
Damon Ream grabbed the holeshot in the 450cc Sportsman B, with Brett Johnson, Zach Mullen, Tate Adamson and Grant Shafer behind him. Zach took second on the fourth lap and stayed close the rest of the race. Adamson took third on the following lap.
Nick Henderson took the lead in the 250cc Sportsman A & B contest, followed by Chris Johnson, Damon Ream, Rich Mellinger and Robert Wheatley. Over the first two laps, Henderson and Johnson ran side by side, battling for the lead. Then Henderson started pulling away. In the late stages, Ream unsuccessfully challenged Johnson for second.
Johnson led the Over 30 final, with Rick Winsett, Ben Ludlow and Albert Cook behind him. Winsett finally took the lead, passing Johnson on the outside off turn two on the third lap. Ludlow took second heading into turn one on the fifth lap.
After being left at the line the previous week at Trail-Way with a seized wheel bearing, Rich Mellinger jumped into the Over 40 lead this week and pulled away to a straightaway margin over Darren Phillips Sr. and Scott Mullen.
Phillips came back to take the Over 50 victory, closely followed by Todd Kendig, Walt Steffy and Gary Bobb. Phillips used the high line to build his lead on the straights, while Kendig kept close using the low line in the turns.
Kendig used the same machine to battle Adam Weiss in the 500cc Two-Valve final. Kendig took the lead, ahead of Weiss, Cody Bauer and David Batts. Entering turn three, Weiss used a slide job to take the lead. Kendig returned the favor in the same spot on the next lap. Bauer picked up his pace, getting by Weiss on the third lap.
Tyler Scott was the only rider to score a pair of wins, easily winning the 65cc contest over Evan Renshaw, Legend Erisman and Brandon Pfanders.
The 85cc (7-11) win was a hard-fought one, as he was behind Colton Murphy, Dylan Cunningham and Renshaw. For three laps, the front four stayed close, until Scott slipped into the lead as they started the fourth lap, taking Cunningham along with him.
Murphy led the 150cc Air-Cooled (7-15) contest, followed by Logan McGrane, Dylan Cunningham and Tyler Varnes. After battling with Murphy, McGrane took the lead off turn two on the third lap and held on to the end.
Path Valley Speedway
Spring Run, Pennsylvania
Results: April 9, 2017
50 CHAIN DRIVE: 1. Legend Erisman (Kaw); 2. Aaden Johnson (Kaw); 3. Kayla Sample (Cob); 4. Adam Costan (KTM); 5. Gabrielle Pfanders (KTM); 6. Mike McKee Jr. (Kaw).
50 SHAFT DRIVE: 1. Kayla Sample (Hon); 2. Caden Steffy (Yam); 3. Gabrielle Pfanders (Yam); 4. Adam Costan (KTM); 5. Patrick Vuotto (Yam).
65 (7-11): 1. Tyler Scott (Kaw); 2. Evan Renshaw (KTM); 3. Brandon Pfanders (Kaw); 4. Legend Erisman (Kaw); 5. Corey Baldwin (Kaw); 6. Aaden Johnson (Kaw).
85 (7-11): 1. Tyler Scott (KTM); 2. Dylan Cunningham (Hon); 3. Colton Murphy (KTM); 4. Brandon Pfanders (KTM); 5. Evan Renshaw (KTM); 6. Tyler Cunningham (Kaw); 7. Logan McGrane (Hon); 8. Logan Eisenhard (Suz).
85 (12-15): 1. Dominick Cooper (Yam); 2. Mason Cardwell (Hon).
125 2-STROKE/150 4-STROKE: 1. Chandler Garcelon (Yam); 2. Cameron Logallo (Kaw); 3. Tyler Varnes (Hon); 4. Hunter Murphy (Hon); 5. Jess Reynolds (Kaw); 6. Sara Lamonica (Hon).
150 AIR-COOLED (7-15): 1. Logan McGrane (Hon); 2. Colton Murphy (Hon); 3. Dylan Cunningham (Hon); 4. Tyler Varnes (Hon); 5. Tyler Cunningham (Suz); 6. Mason Cardwell (Hon); 7. Cherie Weiss (Hon); 8. Jess Reynolds (Hon).
250 SPORTSMAN A & B: 1. Nick Henderson (Hon); 2. Chris Johnson (Kaw); 3. Damon Ream (Hon); 4. Rich Mellinger (Suz); 5. Robert Wheatley (Kaw); 6. Terry Swartley Jr. (Yam); 7. Cherie Weiss (Hon); 8. Samantha Weiss (Hon).
250 B: 1. Jared Florian (Hon); 2. Jess Reynolds (Suz); 3. Travis Hankey (Yam); 4. Aaron Johnson (Kaw).
450 SPORTSMAN A: 1. Cameron Smith (Hon); 2. Tyler Mullen (Hon); 3. Austin Greenland (Yam); 4. D.J. Slosser (Hon); 5. Ryan Varnes (Yam); 6. Nick Henderson (Suz); 7. Austin Wherley (Suz).
450 SPORTSMAN B: 1. Damon Ream (Hon); 2. Zach Mullen (Hon); 3. Tate Adamson (Kaw); 4. Brett Johnson (Suz); 5. Grant Shafer (Kaw); 6. David Evans (Hon); 7. Robert Wheatley (Suz); 8. Justin Bender (Kaw); 9. John Diem (Hon); 10. Samantha Weiss (Hon).
500 2-VALVE: 1. Todd Kendig (Yam); 2. Cody Bauer (Yam); 3. Adam Weiss (Yam); 4. David Batts (Yam); 5. Judah Batts (Yam).
OPEN A: 1. Tyler Mullen (Hon); 2. Ryan Varnes (Yam); 3. Cameron Smith (Hon); 4. Austin Greenland (Yam); 5. D.J. Slosser (Hon); 6. Nick Henderson (Suz); 7. Austin Wherley (Kaw); 8. Rick Winsett (Rtx).
OPEN B: 1. Zach Mullen (Hon); 2. Ken Kolsovsky Jr. (Rtx); 3. Brett Johnson (Suz); 4. Tate Adamson (Kaw); 5. David Evans (Hon); 6. Damon Ream (Hon); 7. Robert Wheatley (Suz); 8. Jeremy Levine (Hon); 9. Justin Bender (Kaw); 10. Travis Hankey (Yam).
WOMEN: 1. Jess Reynolds (Suz); 2. Sara Lamonica (Hon).
30+: 1. Rick Winsett (Rtx); 2. Ben Ludlow (Hon); 3. Chris Johnson (Kaw); 4. Albert Cook (Kaw); 5. Jeremy Levine (Hon); 6. Patrick Giblin (Hon); 7. Rush Branson (Hon); 8. Terry Swartley Jr. (Hon).
40+: 1. Rich Mellinger (Rtx); 2. Darren Phillips Sr. (Kaw); 3. Scott Mullen (Hon).
50+: 1. Darren Phillips Sr. (Kaw); 2. Todd Kendig (Yam); 3. Walt Steffy (KTM); 4. Gary Bobb (Rtx).
VINTAGE ULTRA LIGHTWEIGHT: 1. Rich Kohlbus (Bul).
VINTAGE LIGHTWEIGHT: 1. Rich Kohlbus (Bul).
VINTAGE HEAVYWEIGHT: 1. Adam Weiss (Tri); 2. Dan Daughenbaugh (Hon); 3. Gary Bobb (Rtx); 4. David Batts (Yam); 5. Terry Swartley (Yam); 6. Judah Batts (Yam); 7. Jason Fetch (Hon); 8. Trevor Monn (H-D); 9. Jerry Heil (Yam).
4-WHEEL SPORTSMAN: 1. Cody Moyer (Hon); 2. Ryan Berkey (Yam); 3. Dylan Gibson (Yam); 4. Justin Moyer (Yam); 5. Destiny Boden (Hon); 6. Cody Wompler (Yam).