Former Champs Pauch Jr. & VanHorn Split Twin 20’s at New Egypt Speedway
Story By: Pete Wortman/New Egypt Speedway
Photos By: Harry Meeks/RacersGuide.com
New Egypt, NJ – (Aug. 31, 2019): 2017 track champion Billy Pauch Jr. of , Frenchtown, NJ won his fifth Vahlco Wheels Modified feature event of the season in the first feature, and 2018 track champ David VanHorn of Harmony, NJ took his fourth win of the season in the nightcap at New Egypt Speedway on Saturday night. For Pauch Jr. it was career win number 26, tying him for 4th on the all-time Modified win list with Keith Hoffman and Frank Cozze. VanHorn’s tenth career victory came in one of the most exciting feature events in track history, as he bested Mike Butler and Brandon Grosso in a torrid three car battle for the win.
In the first event, heat race winner TJ Lilly grabbed the initial lead ahead of PJ Oliver, Rich Rutski and Cale Ross. Lilly looked strong in the early going as Rutski took over the runner-up position. Rutski was persistent and finally wrestled the lead away from Lilly on lap 9, but this was short lived as PJ Oliver roared back to life and raced from 4th to the lead on a restart to lead at the halfway mark. Oliver began to stretch his lead as fifth starting Kevin Vaclavicek raced into second and 13th starting Billy Pauch Jr. was now third. Pauch Jr. wasted no time as he quickly charged into second and reeled in the leader. Lap 13 saw Pauch Jr. grab the lead before the caution flew for a tangle between top five runners Danny Bouc and Vaclavicek. The restart saw Pauch Jr. pull away with ease as he cruised to his third Modified victory this week. Ryan Krachun drove from his 9th starting spot to finish a very solid second, besting David VanHorn, Brandon Grosso and Rutski, who completed the top five. In victory lane, Pauch Jr chose the child holding the inversion number 11, meaning that the top 11 finishers would be inverted for the start of the second Twin 20.
Billy Osmun and Danny Bouc made up the front row for the second feature with Bouc racing out to the lead. Bouc quickly opened up a lead with the rest of the pack virtually on his heels racing 2, 3, and twice 4 wide for the top 12 positions in a wild and crowd pleasing battle. With positions changing radically on each passing lap in the top ten Bouc continued to lead each lap. Finally on lap 9 ground swell behind Bouc caught up to the leader as Mike Butler and three other cars passed him on both sides. Two-time winner Butler now had the lead at the halfway sign, but the pressure was relentless from behind as VanHorn and Brandon Grosso raced side by side on his back bumper. The following lap this duo caught the cushion riding Butler and brought the crowd to their feet as they raced under Butler to make it three-wide for the lead. Unknown to the crowd, they would stay on their feet for the remaining last half of the race, as VanHorn & Grosso would not give each other an inch, racing side by side around the speedway lap after lap, and pulling up under Butler to make it 3-abreast in every corner of the speedway. On lap 16 VanHorn showed that his relentless pounding on the bottom groove was paying off as he finally got the bite he was looking for off turn 2 and nosed ahead into turn three. Just as DVH grabbed the lead he got into a little fluid on the bottom of turn four forcing the car to push up the speedway as if he was diving into the pits directly in front of the leaders. VanHorn made an incredible save on the far outside of the track as Butler shot by with Grosso in tow. VanHorn had not only saved it, but was right on the back bumper of the leader down the frontstretch and tried to swing back under Butler, however Grosso was right there as well with the two making hard contact but immediately recovering and both picking up the chase once again. In one lap it was back to the three-wide battle again and as the white flag flew VanHorn grabbed the lead on the low side of turn 4. The final lap saw Butler and Grosso battling for second as VanHorn went on to capture the exciting 20 lap event. Butler came home second, Grosso third, followed by Billy Pauch Jr. and Cale Ross.
Steve Davis of Jackson, NJ was victorious in the Hammer Sportsman 20 lap feature event. Early race leader and new point leader Jim Housworth came home second. John Criscione, David Burns and last week’s winner Ryan Heim rounded out the top five.
The Larry’s Hot Rods and Harley’s NEWS Sprint cars saw a first time winner in victory lane, as Brian Spencer finally posted his first career win after being so close on so many occasions. Spencer got by race long leader Al Cheney, who was also looking for his first career win in a sprint car, and then held off point leader Rich Mellor for the victory. Cheney settled for third, trailed by Duane Nixon and Heidi Hedin.
Dom “the Bomb” Antonelli won his second straight Mike’s Performance 4-Cylinder 15 lap feature. Defending champ Joe Garey Sr. was second, Jim Avery third, Rob Longo fourth and Robby Dunn fifth.
This coming Saturday, Sept. 7th will be the John Romano Memorial 30 lap event for the Hammer Sportsman sponsored by 48Barriers.com along with G&M Dill Trucking and Amwell Auto Body. They will be joined by the Vahlco Wheels Modifieds, Crate Modifieds, and the Street Stocks. Many lap sponsorships and contingency bonuses including heat race $$ continue to come in for The John Romano Memorial event. Anyone interested in getting involved by sponsoring something for this event please contact Pete McDonald at the track office (609)-758-1900. NES is back on Fall hours this week with Gates opening at 4pm, with warm-ups at 5pm and the first race at 6pm.
New Egypt Speedway Results
Labor Day Double Dip
Vahlco Wheels MODIFIEDS
1st Feature (20 laps): 1. Billy Pauch Jr. 2. Ryan Krachun 3. David VanHorn 4. Brandon Grosso 5. Rich Rutski 6. TJ Lilly 7. Mike Butler 8. Cale Ross 9. Blaine Bracelin 10. Danny Bouc 11. Billy Osmun 12. Brian Papiez 13. Chris Grbac 14. Kevin Vaclavicek 15. Dakota Kessler 16. John Packenham 17. Bob Rambone 18. PJ Oliver 19. Pat Wall DNS: Davey Sammons
2nd Feature (20 laps): 1. David VanHorn 2. Mike Butler 3. Brandon Grosso 4. Billy Pauch Jr. 5. Cale Ross 6. Rich Rutski 7. Danny Bouc 8. Ryan Krachun 9. Kevin Vaclavicek 10. Billy Osmun 11. Pat Wall 12. John Packenham 13. TJ Lilly 14. Blaine Bracelin 15. Dakota Kessler 16. Bob Rambone 17. PJ Oliver 18. Chris Grbac DNS: Davey Sammons, Brian Papiez
Heat Winners: TJ Lilly, Pat Wall
Feature (20 laps): 1. Steve Davis 2. Jim Housworth 3. John Criscione 4. David Burns 5. Ryan Heim 6. Jason Kosch 7. Marty Resnick 8. Joseph Brown 9. Jimmy Amato 10. Jim Hawkes 11. Stan Hawk 12. JT Trstensky 13. Bob Lineman Jr. 14. Will Dupree
Heat Winners: Will Dupree, Jason Kosch
Larry’s Hot Rods and Harley’s Northeast Wingless NEWS SPRINTS
Feature (20 laps): 1. Brian Spencer 2. Rich Mellor 3. Al Cheney 4. Duane Nixon 5. Heidi Hedin 6. Larry Drake 7. Eric Degler 8. Chace Leahy 9. Ken Nealis 10. John Brammell 11. Greg Shepsis 12. Brad Schaale
Heat Winner: Larry Drake
Mike’s Performance 4-CYLINDERS
Feature (15 laps): 1. Dominick Antonelli 2. Joe Garey Sr. 3. Jimmy Avery 4. Rob Longo 5. Robby Dunn 6. Joe Garey Jr. 7. Mike Fox 8. Justin Dunn 9. Joe King 10. Jeff Masker 11. Spider Ensinger Jr. 12. John Ciallella 13. Scott Dunn