Story By: RON SZCZERBA / FONDA SPEEDWAY – FONDA, NY – Cody Clark and Mark Mortensen started the 25-lap Short Track Super Series Crate Sportsman feature Sunday night on the front row with Clark taking the early lead.
Chad Edwards started the event in the sixth position and on lap six was the new fourth place car with the first of three yellows in the event coming out at that point for Troy Palmer who slowed in turn one.
Clark restarted on the outside with Mortensen making a bid for the lead on the inside at the drop of the green flag but as the top two exited turn two Clark pulled away yet again. Edwards was the new third place car on the restart after getting by Will Shields for the spot with another yellow out on lap nine.
At the halfway point the top five consisted of Clark, Mortensen, Edwards, Shields, and 12th place starter Tanner Warner. Just as Mortensen was closing in slightly on the leader, Clark made a great move in between two lap cars in turn four to maintain his lead on lap 18.
One final yellow flag slowed the event with three laps to go for Tucker O’Connor and Kurtis Hohensheldt in turn four with O’Connor driving away and Hohensheldt done for the night going off on the hook.
Clark pulled away on the restart with the race for the second position between Mortensen and Edwards heating up overt the last few laps.
On the final lap, Edwards made a slide job pass in front of Mortensen in turn two to take away the second position, but Mortensen stayed right with him on the inside until he got airborne after hitting a hole in turn four and settled for the third position.
Clark went on to his third win of the season and the 12th of his career in the division in his #4 DKM car over Edwards, Mortensen, Warner, and 21st place starter Tim Hartman Jr.
“I want to thank all of my fans and sponsors for their support after we ran into some issues a couple of weeks ago,” Clark said in victory lane. “I was getting by lap cars one by one and thanks to DKM for a great race car. This gives us some motivation for next Saturday and the rest of the season as the point battle looks like it will go down to the wire.”
“Typical Fonda,” Edwards said after the race. “You race the competitors and race the track.”
“It is always hard to start on the front row,” Mortensen said after his third-place finish. “I thought the cautions would help but I couldn’t get the exit out of the turns on the inside that I needed, and Cody (Clark) was just fast. I must have slowed down quite a bit at the end and Chad (Edwards) was able to get by me.”
Next Saturday, July 10 Sampson Motor Car and Yellow Transportation will present a racing card in all regular divisions with racing starting at 7:00 p.m. The Pro Stock feature will be the prestigious 16th Annual Hondo Classic named after the late fan favorite Hondo Carpenter.
Bob Hilbert Sportswear Short Track Super Series Fueled By Sunoco Precision Hydraulic & Oil North Region Event No. 2 Crate 602 Sportsman Feature Finish (25 laps): CODY CLARK, Chad Edwards, Mark Mortensen, Tanner Warner, Tim Hartman Jr., Payton Talbot, Tim Dwyer, Brian Calabrese, Will Shields, Tucker O’Connor, Michael Ballestero, Joey Bruning, Carter Gibbons, Jeremiah Munson, Troy Zilles, Brett Mortensen, Bobby Flood, Hunter Lapp, Kyle Dingman, Joe Toth, Nick Stone, Daniel Morgiewicz, Johnny Young, Dave Dipietroll, Kurtis Hohensheldt, Greg Havlicek, Steve Davis, Jason Reome, Michael McCallion, Troy Palmer.
Did Not Qualify: Dale Welty, Ryan Conrad, Aaron Burton, Ryan Walther, Kevin Crave, Stephen Gray, Blaine Klinger, Walter J. Hammond, Maverick Eldridge, Chip Constantino, Ryan Simmons, Brendan Gibbons, David Richer, Griffin Mansmith, Tony Farone, Jeremy Tyrell, Doug Snyder, Taylor LaPlante, Walter Hammond.
American Racer/Lias Tire Bonus (FREE Tire Certificate): Payton Talbot (sixth)
Beyea Custom Headers Redraw Bonus ($25): Michael Ballestero (Redrew 10th)
Fastline Performance Bonuses ($100 Certificates): Chad Edwards (second) & Joey Bruning (12th)
Greco’s NAPA Hard Charger ($100 Gift Card): Brian Calabrese (30th to eighth)