Column By: TOM WENNER / RPW – BECHTELSVILLE, PA – Decker Swinehart has had a fast Sportsman race car all season and lady luck has not been on his side.
On Saturday night all of the stars aligned for the Fleetwood, PA driver and Swinehart put together an outstanding drive to the front scoring a popular win for the Grandview Speedway fans.
The race was not an easy one for Swinehart who was dogged all race long by young Sportsman rookie Jesse Hirthler and his uncle Brian Hirther who authored an amazing drive from 20th starting spot to 3rd.
Swinehart is the 8th different Sportsman winner in 9 Sportsman events in ’22.
Kudos to the Grandview Speedway track crew for re-doing the track after the Modified 30 lap main event to provide an outstanding track surface for the TP Truck Equipment Sportsman 25 lap feature event.
Nathan Mohr and Hunter Iatalese led the 24 car field to the green flag. Mohr took command of the race at the drop of the green but it was short lived as the caution flag was flying on lap one. Chris Esposito 31 was spun in turn 1. Mark Kemmerer went to the pits and returned. Esposito was also returned after a pit visit.
Another attempt to go green and the yellow was back out this time for Joey Vaccaro, Jesse Landis, and Josh Adams. Vaccaro went to the pits. The running order with 1 scored was Nathan Mohr your leader, Jesse Hirthler 2nd, Hunter Iatalese 3rd, Decker Swinehart 4th, and Colton Perry 5th.
The green was displayed once again and we had Sportsman feature action on the track. At the 5 down mark of the Mohr remained in command out front. Hirthler , Swinehart, Iatalese, and Perry were the Top 5. On Lap 6, Decker Swinehart made a move on Jesse Hirthler to secure 2nd. Mark Kemmerer F10 retired from the event.
On lap 8 Decker Swinehart went to the lead with a pass of Nathan Mohr, Jesse Hirthler 3rd, Hunter Iatalese 4th, Dakota Kohler in 5th. Kohler had the 59k flying on this night as he was 5th from his 12th starting spot.
On lap 10 the yellow was out for Jimmy Leiby who spun in Turn 1. Josh Adams retired during this caution.
The field was reset with Swinehart as your leader, Nathan Mohr 2nd, Jesse Hirthler 3rd, Dakota Kohler 4th, Hunter Iatalese 5th, Dylan Hoch 6th, Mike Stofflet 7th, Kyle Smith 8th, Ryan Graver 9th, Colton Perry 10th
The green is displayed again and the yellow is back out quickly for Hunter Iatalese who is spun in turns 3 & 4. Cody Manmiller is stopped at the wall. Lex Shive and Logan Bauman were also involved. Iatalese and Manmiller head to the pits and Iatalese returns.
Another attempt at the green and there is a collection of cars in turn 2, Nathan Mohr who was running in the 2nd is stopped with front end damage. Dylan Hoch was sent to the rear for contact. Mohr is towed off.
The field was restacked and Decker Swinehart is your leader with 15 to go, Hirthler, Kohler, Smith and Stofflet are the top 5.
Swinehart heads back to the command of the field. Lex Shive retires on lap 13
At the halfway mark of the TP Truck Equipment Sportsman feature event it is all Decker Swinehart. Jesse Hirthler is continuing to dog Swinehart all race long. Dakota Kohler following in 3rd, Kyle Smith 4th, and Brian Hirthler is making his presence known with a strong drive from 20th.
We are now clean and green and the race is picking up the pace at lap 20 with 5 to go. Decker Swinehart remains in race control out front. Jesse Hirthler is in striking distance in 2nd. Kyle Smith has moved into 3rd, Brian Hirthler 4th, Dakota Kohler 5th.
The yellow is displayed once again on lap 20 for Adrianna Delliponte who slowed the Gilmore Racing 7.
With 5 to go, the field is restacked for a 5 lap dash to the checkered flag. Swinehart is your leader, Jesse Hirthler is in 2nd spot, Kyle Smith 3rd, Brian Hirthler 4th, and Ryan Graver 5th.
We go back to racing and Brian Hirthler moves the 4* into 3rd on lap 21. Swinehart is once again controlling the pace out front with Jesse Hirthler in 2nd.
Decker Swinehart cruises to the Sportsman Feature win, his 2nd career Sportsman win. Jesse Hirthler held off his uncle for 2nd, The young Hirthler having a career best night with a strong 2nd place run, Brian Hirthler finishes 3rd from 20th and ran out of time to challenge for the win, Kyle Smith 4th, Ryan Graver 5th, Mike Stofflet 6th, Dylan Hoch 7th from the back of the pack, Dakota Kohler 8th, Jimmy Leiby 9th, and Colton Perry 10th.
Decker mentioned that the car has been ripping as he was 3rd last week and really wanted to win. This week he ran the top when it was fast and moved to the bottom when it rubbered up. Decker mentioned that the track was outstanding fast, smooth and a lot of grip in it in victory lane. Decker was not looking forward to the caution flags, but he stood tall and made it happen. Decker thanked all of his sponsors in victory lane Creative Products, DUP Motorsports, Maidencreek Distributing, Bailey Fabrication, Schaefer Motorsports, DÉCOR Home, and NIA’s Pizzeria.
Grandview Speedway will celebrate the July 4th holiday with the Firecracker 40 Sportsman main event next week. Brad Brightbill, Brad Arnold and Brian Hirthler was the 3 winner of the annual extra distance Sportsman event.