Submitted by Terry Whetstone
CLEARFIELD, PA – After receiving “Bronx Cheers” Friday night in victory lane for what he said was a mistake, that didn’t keep Robbie Blair from Hydetown from returning to victory lane for the fourth straight time this season at Tim Bainey’s Central PA Speedway.
Blair bested a field of 27 All-Star Late Models to take the $7,000 top prize in the 35th Running of the historic Yankee Doodle 50.
“This is the best the race track has ever been since I’ve been coming here,” he told on-track announcer Tim Winters in victory lane. “You could run anywhere on it, top, middle bottom, through the middle it didn’t matter. It was smooth, this is s heck of a race track when you can run all over it like that.”
Blair said he made some changes from the night before but not many, he said he was on a little harder tire than most people were and he believes that benefited him towards the end of the race.
Winters asked Blair if he’d be at the World of Outlaws Show on July 27.
“If they make the track like it was tonight, they did a heck of a job on this track, they got rid of the water hole in turn two,” he said. “Everyone did a great job that worked on this track. Yeah, I’ll probably be here (for the Outlaws.)”
Mike Knight and Rickey Elliott drew the front row for the race, which saw Knight take the lead after a side-by-side battle with Elliott at the start. Once Knight had the lead he was setting a torrid pace, having lapped up to and including 11th place before the first caution flew on the 38th lap, a caution that involved Knight.
Blair had the lead after finding the fastest line on lap 38 before the caution, which involved Knight, after he tangled with a lapped car.
While Knight led earlier, second place was a heated battle, with Elliott holding the position and Blair wanting it. It wasn’t until the field was in lapped traffic on lap 17 that Blair was able to get the position from Elliott, but then Elliott’s tires appeared to go away and he began fading as the end grew near.
A pair of ones, the H1 of Jared Miley and the 1M of Jeremy Miller were also in the top five the entire 50-lap distance, as they also began to work the lapped traffic and got around Elliott on laps 47 and 49 respectively.
The last caution was on the 46th lap, when the green came back out it was all Blair who had clear sailing for his fourth consecutive win at the speedway this season, making him the only Late Model winner this season.
Miley was second with Miller, Elliott and Dave Hess Jr. completing the top five. Heat wins went to Blair, Boom Briggs, Elliott and Miley. Knight set the fastest time of 16.424 seconds.
Eric Baun led the Street Stock feature for the first nine laps before Allen Dillenger took the lead and eventual win, making his the only driver to win in the Street Stock division at CPS this season. Randy Wyant, Baun, Denny Crawford and Rusty Martz completed the top five. Heat wins went to Dillenger, Jamie Barber and Wyant.
35th Annual Yankee Doodle 50 summary: 1. Robbie Blair, Hydetown; 2. Randy Wyant, 3. Eric Baun, 4. Denny Crawford, 5. Rusty Martz, 6. Bob Connor, 7. Jay Bloom, 8. Tim Krape; 9. Chad Obrien, 10. Brian Duffy.2. Jared Miley, South Park; 3. Jeremy Miller, Gettysburg; 4. Ricky Elliott, Seaford, Del; 5. Dave Hess Jr., Waterford; 6. Matt Lux, Franklin; 7. Gregg Satterlee, Rochester Mills; 8. Boom Briggs, Bear Lake; 9. D.J. Myers, Greencastle; 10. John Garvin, Sarver; 11. Greg Oaks, Franklinville, NY; 12. Tim Smith, Jr., Long Hollow; 13. Denny Fenton, Clearfield; 14. Alex Ferree, Saxonburg; 15. Tim Fedder, Millerstown; 16. Darren Peters, Fort Erie, Canada; 17. Chris Farrell, Clearfield; 18. Todd Snook, Mifflintown; 19. Chris Clark, Curwensville; 20. Ryan Christoff, Cannonsburg; 21. John Oaks, Punxsutawney; 22. Greg Kent, Morrisdale; 23. Mark Booth, Irwin; 24. Mike Knight, Riply, NY; 25. Shane McMeans, Dayton.