Keeping Pace

Matt Hein wins the Rebel Jackson Memorial

Matt Hein won the Rebel Jackson Memorial at Ephrata Raceway Park. (Photo courtesy of NSRA) (The Spokesman-Review)
Matt Hein won the Rebel Jackson Memorial at Ephrata Raceway Park. (Photo courtesy of NSRA) (The Spokesman-Review)

Matt Hein continued his winning ways with a victory at Ephrata Raceway Park

Scott R. Cedergreen, ASA/NSRA media relations




Ephrata, Washington- Matt Hein finds the checkers again for his second
win of the 2009 American Speed Association/Northwest Sprintcar Racing Association
championship season continuing to hold his points lead after a disastrous finish at
Spokane Raceway Park just two weeks ago while leading that race and experiencing a
cut down left rear resulting in a crash into the front stretch wall. Jeff Montgomery
continues to keep himself close in the points race with a strong finish at both
Spokane and Ephrata.




Hein ripped around the quarter-mile high banked Ephrata Raceway Park qualifying
second quick with a 12.711 lap. Quick qualifier belonged to Drew Church, not having
been in a sprint car in nearly two years, and bringing out a new car, its first race
here. Church clicked off a 12.572 over a tenth quicker than Hein demonstrating he
hasn’t lost his touch for driving or for prepping his car. Montgomery found
qualifying not to his liking circulating the track with only a 13.089 settling for
12th quick.




For the fifty lap feature with an eight car invert Hein found himself in seventh on
the starting grid while Montgomery sat on the outside of the front row, Tony Berry
sitting on the pole. At the drop of the green Montgomery powered around Berry on the
outside of the first turn taking the lead through turn two. Hein started his
relentless move towards the front picking off, Mack, Veenstra, Alberding, and Berry
to move into third within several laps. Lockwood had moved up from his sixth
starting spot to take over second. Montgomery stretched his lead at times out to a
half lap over Hein and Lockwood. Only when Montgomery came up to lap traffic would
Hein and Lockwood be able to close the gap on him. Lockwood and Hein started a
continuous tussle for second over numerous laps with Lockwood holding second. By lap
twenty-five both Lockwood and Hein had caught Montgomery making for a three way
battle for first. Lockwood managed to get around Montgomery to take the lead only to
go high in turns three and four a few laps later to be passed by Hein. Lap
thirty-one brought out the first of two yellow flags for an incident involving Britt
Lorentzen spinning on the front stretch collecting Lockwood with Alberding jumping
Lockwood’s left rear tire. Both Lockwood and Alberding left the track to check for
damage Lockwood having a bent left rear radius arm and Alberding having to replace a
front torsion arm. Both returned to the track under the caution. Lorentzen pushed
off to return to the rear of the field. As the green flag unfurled signaling the end
of the caution Montgomery held the lead over Hein. Montgomery held the lead for the
next several laps but Hein was now challenging for first. Hein took the lead away
from Montgomery in traffic; starting to pull away. Montgomery could not keep up with
Hein on an open track only closing the gap when Hein encountered traffic. What was
thought to be a right rear tire gone away on Montgomery’s car was in fact a
fastener on the rear panhard bar that backed off leaving the handling far less than
satisfactory. With the panhard bar not secured on the left side only the disc brake
rotor kept the bar in place cutting a deep groove in the panhard bar. Lockwood and
Alberding starting from the rear of the field started working their way forward but
would not be a factor in the finish. Drew Church had quietly worked his way forward
over the course of the race to find himself in the top three.




Lap forty-one brought out the second caution for Jeff Bird and Kenny Hamilton making
contact in turn two both spinning down to the infield on the backstretch. The
restart would position Hein and Montgomery with open track but with Montgomery’s
panhard bar failure he could not keep up with Hein. Church was mired in traffic in
third and would not be able to catch Montgomery to challenge for second.




At the checkers Hein took the win with Montgomery second, Church third, Cody
Veenstra fourth, Mike Fought finished in fifth.




After the race Jeff Montgomery commented he was lucky to finish the race let alone
hold on to second with the panhard bar issue on his car. Montgomery stated, “We
were just plain lucky this time.”







RACE RESULTS




23 cars (#24 of Todd Lolkus broke in practice)




A-Main (50 laps) 8 car invert: 1. 98h Matt Hein, 2. 33j Jeff Montgomery, 3. 28 Drew
Church, 4. 7v Cody Veenstra, 5. 78 Mike Fought, 6. 76 Andy Alberding, 7. 51 Jake
Mann, 8. 98 Kenny Hamilton, 9. 99 Cory Lockwood, 10. 44 Todd Coleman, 11. 55 Jeff
Bird, 12. 22 Richie Larson, 13. 25w Whitney Nolan, 14. 2x Kurt Myers, 15. 7 Joe
Smith, 16. 25z Greg Ochs, 17. 17 Justin Mack, 18. 53 Tony Berry, 19. 4 Greg
Middendorf, 20. 65 Kevin Burck, 21. 37 Jim Brock, 22. Britt Lorentzen.




Heat 1 (8 laps): 1. 65 Kevin Burck, 2. 33j Jeff Montgomery, 3. 7v Cody Veenstra, 4.
99 Cory Lockwood, 5. 98 Kenny Hamilton, 6. 55 Jeff Bird, 7. 7 Joe Smith .




Heat 2 (8 laps): 1. 17 Justin Mack, 2. 98h Matt Hein, 3. 4 Greg Middendorf, 4. 53
Tony Berry, 5. 44 Todd Coleman, 6. 25z Greg Ochs, 7. 51 Jake Mann.




Heat 3 (8 laps): 1. 78 Mike Fought, 2. 76 Andy Alberding, 3. 2x Kurt Myers, 4. 28
Drew Church, 5. 96 Britt Lorentzen, 6. 25w Whitney Nolan, 7. 22 Richie Larson, 8. 37
Jim Brock




B-Dash (4 laps): 1. 33j Jeff Montgomery, 2. 55 Jeff Bird, 3. 53 Tony Berry, 4. 2x
Kurt Myers.




A-Dash (4 laps): 1. 96 Britt Lorentzen, 2. 28 Drew Church, 3. 98h Matt Hein, 4. 98
Kenny Hamilton.




Qualifying: 28 Drew Church 12.572, 98h Matt Hein 12.711, 98 Kenny Hamilton 12.794,
96 Britt Lorentzen 12.851, 44 Todd Coleman 12.902, 99 Cory Lockwood 12.923, 22
Richie Larson 12.973, 17 Justin Mack 12.975, 7v Cody Veenstra 13.012, 76 Andy
Alberding 13.056, 51 Jake Mann 13.066, 33j Jeff Montgomery (Canada) 13.089, 25w
Whitney Nolan 13.252, 53 Tony Berry 13.391, 55 Jeff Bird (Canada) 13.404, 2x Kurt
Myers 13.461,4 Greg Middendorf 13.480, 65 Kevin Burck 13.500, 78 Mike Fought 13.509,
25z Greg Ochs 13.547, 7 Joe Smith 13.775, 37 Jim Brock 14.790.




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Keeping Pace

Motorsports correspondent Doug Pace keeps up with motorsports news and notes from around the region.





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