Tom Decker became the first 2011 Late Model repeat winner at Thunder Valley after taking the win at the track Saturday night. It was Decker’s third career win at the track. In other action, Jim Saylor and Mike Duck took the special 30 lap Semi Late and Pure Stock events, and Ray Edwards won the 4 cylinder event.
Chris Rhodes and Gene Kain brought the Late Model field to the line but after a wild first lap, Tom Decker emerged with the lead. Decker scooted away from the field as Shawn Claar secured second spot on lap two. Steve Everhart shot by Claar on a lap eight restart after the only yellow in the race, but he did not close on Decker. Greg Fetters got by Everhart on lap 13 but he too could not close on Decker.
Claar who slid back as far as fourth, rallied late to secure second from Fetters on lap 15. Over the last ten all green laps he closed on Decker but the checkered flag flew before he got to the leader. At the finish it was Decker, Claar, Fetters, Everhart, Chuck Clise, Wayne Johnson,Dan Lee. Bill Burns, Sam Grindlesberger and Dale Claycomb. Rhodes and Claar won the heats.
The extra distance of the Semi Late event was to be the undoing of Dave Lee. He jumped from third to lead the opening lap and appeared to have things under control. Jim Sayler got to second by lap 5 but could not get around, while Dave Whetston held off a crowd at third. On what would have been the last lap of a regular event distance, Sayler whipped around the outside of Lee and slid into the lead.
Lee was safely ahead of the third place battle as the laps wore down. Tom Warren emerged with third after some wild lapped traffic moves on lap 25 and ran there to the end. At the finish it was Sayler, Lee, Warren, Jeff Benson, Ray Sheetz, Dave Whetstone, Jason Vangilder, Bill Pluta, Jonathan Hayman and Jamie Kohan. Lee and Whetstone won the heats.
Mike Siegele was the Pure Stock pole sitter and early leader. He ran the race of his career, leading the first 8 laps. But Mike Duck hunted him down and got by on lap 9. Chad Gambol came through the field taking third on lap 10 and second around Mike Ott on lap 13. But although he ran Duck down, Gambol settled for second at the line.
At the finish it was Duck, Gambol, Ott, Tim Brown, Jarrod Brown, Justin Milburn, Greg Cornell Sr, Brian Shaw, Terry Mitchell and Dave Beahr. Mitchell and Duck won the heats.
Ray Edwards came from sixth to lead the first 4 cylinder lap, then held off Lou Orris for the duration. Orris made it exciting with a last lap burst but fell short at the line. Edwards won, followed by Orris, Keith Deeter, Casey Fleegle, Tim Thomas and Nathan Vinosky.
LATE MODEL 25 LAP 1 Tom Decker, 2 Shawn Claar, 3 Greg Fetters, 4 Steve Everhart, 5 Chuck Clise, 6 Wayne Johnson, 7 dan Lee, 8 Bill Burns, 9 Sam Grindlesberger, 10 Dale Claycomb, 11 Gene Kain, 12 Chris Rhodes.
SEMI LATES 30 LAPS 1 Jim Sayler, 2 Dave Lee, 3 Tom Warren, 4 Jeff Benson, 5 Ray Sheetz, 6 Dave Whetstone, 7 Jason Vangilder, 8 Bill Pluta, 9 Jonathan Hayman, 10 Jamie Kohan, 11 Joe Pluta, 12 Dennis Collins, 13 Dave Puckett, 14 Greg Cornell, 15 Justin Robine
PURE STOCK 30 LAPS. 1 Mike Duck, 2 Chad Gambol, 3 Mike Ott, 4 Tim Brown, 5 Jarrod Brown, 6 Justin Milburn, 7 Greg Cornell Sr, 8 Brian Shaw, 9 Terry Mitchell, 10 Dave Beahr, 11 Willy Ling, 12 Chris Wolfe, 13 Mike Siegele, 14 Jesse Hunt, 15 Ryan Beckett
4 CYLINDER 15 LAPS 1 Ray Edwards, 2 Lou Orris, 3 Keith Deeter, 4 Casey Fleegle, 5 Tim Thomas, 6 Nathan Vinosky, 7 Leroy Booher, 8 Martin Vinosky, 9 Nick Zborovancik, 10 Ian Will, 11 Michael Sutpin, 12 Matt Diehl, 13 Jack Theys, 14 Kenton Maust, DNS John Hayes