Story By: MARTY KELLY III / SHORT TRACK SUPER SERIES – PORT ROYAL, PA – Brian Krummel, Logan Watt, David Burns, Steve Davis and Tanner Warner picked up Qualifying Race victories Friday at Port Royal with the Short Track Super Series South Region ahead of Saturday’s Ice Less 50.
Seventy-seven 602 Crate Sportsman cars took to the Speed Palace on Bob Hilbert Sportswear Qualifying Night Friday to begin setting the field for Saturday’s Ice Less 50 portion of the 2022 Speed Showcase at Port Royal Speedway.
Brian Krummel blistered the middle-high groove nearly .4 seconds faster than anyone else in his qualifier and picked up the win with apparent ease.
“We were pretty quick in the morning and the track changes so much you never really know what you’re gonna have,” Krummel said. “You try to adjust to it and we hit it right on the head for the heat.”
Port Royal Speedway’s track crew performed an extensive re-grooming of the surface between the morning practice sessions and the beginning of qualifying, after two inches of rain Thursday washed out practice and a preliminary Modified feature.
Cooler temperatures during the evening tailed a 65-degree day, resulting in a great increase in grip through the night’s racing compared to those morning practices.
In the second qualifier it was “The Spark Plug,” Logan Watt picking up the win after a spirited battle with eventual runner-up Thomas Sherby, which saw Watt use both high and low lanes.
“Track’s not going to be quite the same tomorrow, but it’s going to be pretty close. To figure out both top and bottom lanes is going to be really important, because the setup has got to be right tomorrow,” Watt said.
The third qualifier looked similar, with David Burns getting reps on both the cushion and the rail to defeat Carter Crooker and score the win. Burns, who began the year in the Modified ranks at New Egypt Speedway struggling and returned to the crate division with the help of his car owner, Marty Resnick.
“The car has been so good all year, we just keep finishing second…To come here, 77 cars and run really good and win this thing, it feels good,” Burns said.
In contrast, the fourth heat saw no challenge for the lead as Steve Davis, driving for Howie Finch achieved a 3.5 second lead over the rest of the field at the finish, putting the Ice Less sponsored car in good standing for the Ice Less sponsored race.
“We struggled, had a distributor issue earlier in the timed practice,” Davis said. “Howie (Finch) made some calls from home watching on Flo and they were right, because the car is really good right now.”
Finally, in the fifth qualifier it was another hired driver, Tanner Warner going to victory lane in EJ Gallup’s usual mount for the limited sportsman division at Utica-Rome.
“E.J. is the head coach of the basketball team back home for the college, he’s so backed up,” Warner said. “To come out here and compete with these guys is awesome, I want to thank EJ and everyone for the opportunity.”
Each of the qualifying winners received $250 courtesy of Andy Belmont and Belmont’s Garage.
The ‘Speed Showcase’ weekend concludes Saturday night as the STSS Modifieds and STSS Crate 602 Sportsman run in final consolation races before taking part in their respective main events.
The STSS Modifieds battle of 75-laps in pursuit of the $50,000 pot at the end of the rainbow. The STSS Crate 602 Sportsman take part in the Ice Less LLC ‘Speed Showcase 50’ for a $4,000 top prize.
For the Oct. 15 event, reserved Grandstand Admission is $40 (all seats).
Saturday Reserved Seating (sections A-G) are on sale through the Port Royal Speedway office at 717.527.2303.
General grandstand admission is $35 for Adults and $20 for Students (ages 13-18). Kids ages 12 and under are admitted FREE.
Saturday pit admission is $50.
All gates open at 2 p.m. Hot laps are slated for 5 p.m. with racing to follow at 6 p.m.
Qualifying Race No. 1 (15 laps): BRIAN KRUMMEL, Kyle Smith (No. 77), Stephen Kemery, Brad Grim, Dave DePietro, Kreg Crooker, Justin Comes, Thomas Prychka, Daryl Dissinger, Walter Hammond Jr., Josh Kane, David Dickey, Isabella VanOrden, Matthew Ellery, Billy Fiske, Michael Ballestero
Qualifying Race No. 2 (15 laps): LOGAN WATT, Thomas Sherby, Dylan Swinehart, Ethan Bill, Dakota Kohler, Joey Vaccaro, Brian Papiez, Dylan Madsen, John McPhee, Matt Yoder, Daryl Nutting, Jim Harbison, Joe Toth, Greg Crooker, AJ Digsby, Zack Welch, Eric Kormann
Qualifying Race No. 3 (15 laps): DAVID BURNS, Carter Crooker, Joe Judge, Scott Hitchens, Ryan Simmons, Sean Metz, Matt Guererri, Johnny Bangs, Zac Weller, Doug Kline, David Miloszar, George Gareis Jr., Chris Kugler, Jim DeArmitt, Jim O’Hara
Qualifying Race No. 4 (15 laps): STEVE DAVIS, Logan Bauman, Nick DeSantis, Ryan Godown Jr., Walter Hammond, Cody Manmiller, Eric Williams, Shawn McPhee, Tom Princiotta, Bobby Watkins, Kolyn Schane, Adam Taft, Kyle Smith (No. 212), Tajae Adams, Brandon Edgar
Qualifying Race No. 5 (15 laps): TANNER WARNER, Trent Willey, Brad Brightbill, Chip Constantino, Craig Whitmoyer, Brian Hughes, Brandon Watkins, Ben Feldman, Dakota Green, Mike Schane, Isabel Barron, Alan Hammond, Chris Grbac, Logan Starr