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Marty Reilly
       

 

 
HOLTGRAVER AND GUIDACE Dominate at MRP
 
Finally nice weather and no weekend work I was off to my first race of the season. My good friend Stan "The Beer Man" Miller loaded of his truck and it was off to Mercer Raceway park in Western Pa.
 
After getting the camp set up it was off pit side to see a lot of old friends. I've been coming over to MRP for over 20 years now and met  a lot of great people.
 
The first was for colleague Chuck Bollinger. Chuck and I used to write for RPM racing News. Now Chuck does and outstanding job for Area Auto Racing News.
 
Going through the pits is was nice to see some of my Ohio drivers here.
Jac Haudenschield and his son Sheldon, Lee Jacobs the son of sprint car great Kenny Jacobs and Cole Duncan.
 
I seen Cole was in the Rudzik racing 49 at Mercer instead of his familiar 22 sprinter.
 
All Star regulars and local favorites Tim Shaffer who is in the Brian Grove 45 and Danny Holtgraver who is in the Rob Hunter 10H. All were battling the tough local Mercer regulars for a $4,00 to win payday sponsored by Bonnell's Rod Shop out of Fairview, Pa.
 
Scott is a former 410 and 360 sprint standout here in western Pa and New York. He's out of the seat, now Scott and his businesses sponsor many events around western Pa. and my cars as well.
 
Got to talk with young standout from Wooster, Oh Sheldon Haudenschield. Sheldon says he's going to race where ever  and when ever he can with a wing or without. He was very pleased with his second place finish at Fremont last week and said he and dad plan on being at Wayne County Speedway for their opener next Saturday.
 
Also good to talk to local favorite and all around great guy Arnie Kent. Arnie said he's looking forward to the upcoming season in the area. He also said the car isn't where he wants it, but it's close.
 
Down in the pits with their 360'\s were New York invaders Jaron Zimbardi, Steve Collins and Dennis Wagner. Getting some track time for when the Patriot Sprint Tour comes back to Mercer later this season.
 
Jarod ran a strong third holding off the 410 of Lee Jacobs.
 
The Sprint Car feature got off to a rough start with young second generation driver Adan Kekich getting upside down collecting Arnie Kent and Jac Haudenschield. Jac was able to rejoin the race. Then on the restart the 79 machine of John McCraken took a wild end over end tumble. Great to report both driver were ok.
 
On  the restart Danny Holtgraver lead the rest of the way to take the $4000 dollar paycheck back to Pittsburgh and also taking his second win of the weekend. Last years track champion Jack Sodeman Jr was second followed by Zimbardi, Jacobs and Shaffer round out the top five.
 
In the 358 Modifieds if was Frankie Guidace leading all 25 laps to claim the $1000 first place prize. Jimmy Holden, Kyle Fink, J.R. MeGinley and ShawnFleeger were your top five.
 
Young Andy Feil held off two young 410 drivers Brandon Matus and Adam Kekich to claim the Outlaw Sprint Warriors.
 
Adam Kekich was driving the 5 car usually driven by Bob McMillin.
 
Tyler Fulton and Rusty Moore took home freature wins in the mini stocks and stock cars respectfully.
 
In conclusion I would like to thank Franck Benic and the staff of Mercer Raceway Park for making out trip over from Canton most enjoyable and look forward to returning again this season.
 
I hope everyone had a great Easter Weekend with their families.
 
Until next week God Bless,
 
Marty

 

 

 

 

 

 

       

 

       

 

       

 

       
 

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