With just 10 laps to run in Saturday's Modified main at Mahoning Valley Speedway, Tommy Flanagan appeared to be on his way to winning. However, after a restart at lap 25 his motor failed and Bobby Jones became the benefactor.
Jones, who hails from Palmerton, then had to shield off Earl Paules and Nevin George en route to his second win of the season.
"(Tommy) Flanagan was good and he pulled away from me. I just stayed in line with him and all I could do was wait to see if something would happen in the end. I felt bad for him but we've all been there but you take these wins anyway you can because it's always so tough here at Mahoning," said Jones.
At the start Flanagan shared the front row with Terry Markovic and was able to get a jump and lead the first lap. From there on he was making it a race for second as each passing lap he continued to distance himself from the pack. Matt Wentz and Jones had been dueling for second.
The race had gone nonstop until lap 25, which then deleted the huge lead of Flanagan. By then Jones had moved to second and on the restart is when the ill-fated end occurred for Flanagan. Entering turn one his car slowed and he was off the track soon after.
"It (engine) just quit on me. The car was running great to that point but all of a sudden the revs went up and I had to shut it down," said Flanagan.
Jones was close enough that he actually bumped Flanagan and was concerned that he may have been at fault for his demise because of that.
Over the remaining laps teammates Paules and George where ganging up on Jones. George had been second but on lap 27 Paules went to his inside with a very gutsy move. Both of them continued pressuring Jones but he held his ground as the three of them crossed under the checkers in very tight line.
John Markovic and Wentz completed the top five. Heat winners were Jeff Rex, Jr., Flanagan and Troy Bollinger.
Rick Wallace of Lehighton picked up his first Late Model win of the season. The third starting Wallace tucked in behind pole sitter Paul Effrig at the beginning of the race. Mike Sweeney then linked with them prior to the first caution on lap three.
Joe Steigerwalt of Lehighton took home the lion's share of the Gene Bowers, Sr., Memorial Street Stock 100, earning $1200 for the win and an additional $750 in lap sponsor money.
Smith was third with Todd Ahner and Hard Charger Award winner Jason Frey rounding out the top five.
There was a season high 29 cars for the regular 25-lap feature with Jason Kuhn of Lehighton pulling off a narrow win over Josh Mooney by a scant .055-second margin of victory.
Street Stock heat win went to Gursky, Roberts and Zach Graver with Jillian Long annexing the consi.
Mike Stofflet of Mertztown presented himself with a personal birthday gift by taking a victory in the Dirt Mod feature. Stofflet started tenth and blasted into the lead after a wild three wide battle on lap eleven with Dave Thomas and Kris Graver.
Randy Thomas and Graver notched heat wins.
12-year old Kyle Strohl of Palmerton proved himself yet again as the he drove to a solid win in the 4-Cylinder Stock main, his second of the season and third overall of the year. He also has a Street Stock victory.
After taking the lead from Bobby Kibler, Jr., with a veteran-like inside move on lap five, Strohl then drove away to an impressive victory of nearly a second over runner up Jake Kibler.
Jake Kibler and point leader Jeremy Miller won 4-Cylinder heats.
Ron Merlino, Jr., of Franklinville, NJ led every lap en route to his first 4c Super Modified win at the speedway. Second went to Mike Renn. Bob Renn took the heat win.
Modified Feature Finish, 25 Laps: 1. Bobby Jones, 2. Earl Paules, 3. Nevin George, 4. John Markovic, 5. Matt Wentz, 6. Brian DeFebo, 7. Chip Wanamaker, 8. Shawn Sitarchyk, 9. Scott Lesher, 10. John Bennett, 11. Troy Bollinger, 12. Terry Markovic, 13.Lonnie Behler, 14. DJ Wagner, 15. Scott Meckes, 16. Don Wagner, 17. Tom Flanagan 18. Kevin Rex, Jr., 19. Rich Moser
Late Model Feature Finish, 25 Laps: 1. Rick Wallace, 2. Earl Paules, 3. Mike Sweeney, 4. Frankie Althouse, 5. Paul Effrig, 6. Kenny Hein, 7. Geno Steigerwalt, 8. George Ramos, 9. Dave Wallace, 10. Glenn Slocum
Street Stock Feature Finish, 100 Laps: 1. Joe Steigerwalt, 2. TJ Gursky, 3. Kevin Smith, 4. Todd Ahner, 5. Jason Frey, 6. Gene Bowers, 7. Chris parry, 8. Chip Wanamaker, 9. Jason Kuhn, 10. Jillian Long, 11. Josh Mooney, 12. BJ Wambold, 13. Steve Hoffman, 14. Joe Roberts, 15. Rich Moser, 16. Brian Labar, 17. Randy Ahner, Jr., 18. Zach Graver, 19. Kyle Strohl, 20. Eric Danyluk, 21. Bob Kibler, 22. Joe Stamm
Street Stock Feature Finish, 25 Laps: 1. Jason Kuhn, 2. Josh Mooney, 3. Jason Frey, 4. Joe Steigerwalt, 5. Chris Parry, 6. Todd Ahner, 7. Randy Ahner, Jr., 8. Long, 9. Gursky, 10. Smith, 11. Jonathan Tracey, 12. Hoffman, 13. Roberts, 14. Bowers, 15. Danyluk, 16. Strohl, 17. Wanamaker, 18. Kibler, 19. Zach Graver, 20. Moser
Did not qualify: BJ Wambold, Ethan Rutherford, Guy Ackerman, Mike Radocha, Cody Roth, Lou Strohl, Scott Kotran, Joe Stamm, Brian Labar
Dirt Modified Feature Finish, 20 Laps: 1. Mike Stofflet, 2. Dave Thomas, 3. Randy Thomas, 4. Joe Stangle, 5. Mark Levy, 6. Kris Graver, 7. Ronnie Krex, 8. Ricky Yetter, 9. Dave Gorbatuk, 10. Bill Sittler, Jr., 11. Frank Parastino, 12. Ed Altemose
4-Cylinder Stock Feature Finish, 20 Laps: 1. Kyle Strohl, 2. Jake Kibler, 3. Jeremy Miller, 4. Nick Baer, 5. Tyler Stangle, 6. Dan Freundt, 7. Bobby Kibler, Jr., 8. Jake Oswald, 9. Stone Wentz, 10. Tony Scheier, 11. Taya Wentz DQ: Doug Knauss
4C Super Modified Feature Finish, 15 Laps: 1. Ron Merlino, Jr., 2. Mike Renn, 3. Steve Renn, 4. Bob Renn, 5. Wes Gilbert, 6. Anthony Merlino