BETHEL, NY – Fans were surprised at the beginning of the Bethel Motor Speedway season to see that defending BMS Modified champion Joe McCarthy stepped out of the driver’s seat, turning the wheel over to his brother-in-law, Ed Dachenhausen. Dachenhausen, who has spent recent years competing on dirt, has proven to be a dominant force on asphalt as he picked up his sixth consecutive win – and eighth of the season – during Camera Night at the quarter-mile asphalt oval this past Saturday.
It was a hard-fought win for Dachenhausen, who ran in the third spot for the first half of the race. George Rudinas took off from the pole and got out to the early lead, and Blair Culhane quickly made his way to second. Culhane and Dachenhausen ran side-by-side behind Rudinas, each looking for a way past the 2014 Rookie of the Year. At the halfway point of the race, Rudinas moved up the track just enough to open the inside lane for Dachnhausen to march past, and Culhane followed to take second.
Culhane spent the remainder of the race right on Dachnhausen’s bumper, but found himself unable to make a successful bid for the lead. Dachenhausen was first to cross the line, followed by Culhane and Rudinas.
It was a great night for 2012 Sportsman champion Jerry Curry, who came from the sixth starting spot to return to Victory Lane for the first time in a month. Kimberlee Morgan and Greg Morgan made up the front row for the start, and G. Morgan immediately shot out front. Rich Coons, who was the division’s 2009 Rookie of the Year, wasted little time in getting to the front, and he took over the top spot with just four laps in the books.
Two laps later, Curry took over second, and began to apply pressure to Coons. On lap 14, Curry was able to work his way past Coons for the lead. When the checkered flag waved, Curry grabbed the win for the fifth time this season. Coons was second, and Rick Mill came from the eighth starting spot to claim third in only his second appearance at Bethel.
Joseph Graf started on the pole for the Legends pro/Masters/Semi Pro event, and led every lap on his way to his sixth win of the year. The battle of the race was for the second spot, as Richie Coy and Brad Lowmaster battled intensely for the position for 15 laps of the 20-lap event. The pair swapped the spot several times, with Lowmaster laying final claim to it on the final lap of the race. Graf took down the win over Lowmaster and Coy.
In Legends Young Lions action, Teddy Hodgdon put an end to Alex McCollum’s five-race win streak when he collected his first career Legends win. Hodgdon started on the pole, alongside David French. Hodgdon got out front at the drop of the green, and McCollum quickly worked his way to second. Lap after lap, McCollum challenged Hodgdon for the position, but Hodgdon held on to claim victory over McCollum and Andrew Molleur.
Defending Bandolero champion David French claimed his eighth win of the year in a fast-paced event that was slowed by only a single caution on the first lap that ended the night prematurely for pole sitter Eugene Drew. French led every lap, holding off a hard-charging Lars McElravy. Teddy Bowen, who was involved in the first-lap incident and had to pit as a result, came from the rear of the field to cross the line third.
Conner Piasecki took down the win in the Beginner Bandolero feature, ending Tyler Dachenhausen’s four-race win streak. It was Piasecki’s second win of the season. Piasecki started on the pole, but faced pressure from Joey Aungst over the entire race distance. The two were nearly side-by-side coming to the checkered flag, and Piasecki crossed the line just ahead of Aungst. Dachenhausen was third.
The Pro Stock feature event kept fans on the edges of their seats, as a three-way battle for the top spot fueled the excitement over the second half of the event. Vinny Stanton Sr. and Mac Crawson started on the front row, and Stanton was able to grab the top spot for the first six laps of the event. Jim Helt powered his way past Stanton on lap seven, and Kenny Atkins came to second two laps later. At the halfway point, Greg Cohen took over the third spot, setting the stage for the intense battle.
Over the final laps of the race, Helt ran out front, while Atkins challenged him on the outside and Cohen challenged him on the inside. The trio ran in close quarters, and Atkins and Cohen swapped the second spot by mere inches several times. In the end, neither was able to take the top spot from Helt, who collected his second win of the year. Atkins laid final claim to the second spot on the final lap of the event, and Cohen was third.
Gary VanOrden took home his sixth Street Stock win of the year, taking over the points lead from his daughter, defending division champion Amber VanOrden, in the process. Vinny Stanton Jr. took off from the pole and led the first three laps before being passed by G. VanOrden. Just prior to the halfway point, rookie Walt Henry grabbed the second spot, with A. VanOrden taking third one lap later. The top three remained unchanged over the remainder of the event, with G. VanOrden claiming the win over Henry and A. VanOrden.
Brian Bauernfeind notched his first win of the season in the 4 Cylinder Advanced race. The 2013 4 Cylinder Novice champion came from the seventh starting spot to claim the victory. Dan Curry and Jerry Kingeter started on the front row, with Curry getting out front on the initial lap. Mike Travis took over second on lap four, but Bauernfeind was not far behind, and the battle soon heated up between Travis and Bauernfeind for the second spot. On lap 12, Bauernfeind wrestled the spot from Travis, and he grabbed the lead just two laps later. Bauernfeind brought home the win, and Tasha Curry was credited with second in the final rundown. D. Curry was awarded third.
It was a busy night for the 4 Cylinder Novice drivers, as the night kicked off with the completion of the June 20th event that was halted with just two laps in the books due to rain, and they also completed their regular scheduled race for the night. When all was said and done, Lee Cogswell grabbed his first win of the year, while Ryan LaMantia scored his third win.
Dan Bryant took off from the pole when the 4 Cylinder Novice holdover race resumed, with Cogswell on his outside. Cogswell wasted little time putting his car out front, brining LaMantia with him to second. Just prior to the halfway point, Brittany Curry broke into the top three. LaMantia challenged Cogswell lap after lap over the extended green-flag run, but Cogswell held him off to collect the win. LaMantia had to be content with second, and Curry crossed the line third.
LaMantia was not about to settle for second in the nightcap race, as the race once again started with a battle for the lead between LaMantia and Cogswell. LaMantia took the lead with just four laps in the books, leaving Cogswell to contend with David Donovan for second. Just past the halfway point, Donovan laid claim to second. With just five laps to go, Travis Cogswell grabbed third from his father. When the checkered flag waved, LaMantia took down the win, followed by Donovan and T. Cogswell.
This coming Saturday, July 18th, the gates at Bethel Motor Speedway will once again swing open for a jam-packed night of racing excitement. On the schedule are the BMS Modified, 358/Sportsman, Legends, Bandolero, Pro Stock, Street Stock, and 4 Cylinder Advanced and Novice classes. Gates open at 2:30 pm, with hot laps at 4:30 pm, and racing set to go green at 6 pm. Grandstand admission is just $6.
More information, including a complete 2015 schedule, can be obtained online at www.bethelmotorspeedway.com, or by calling (845) 319-7908.
BMS MODIFIED FEATURE FINISH (25 laps): 1. Ed Dachenhausen, 2. Blair Culhane, 3. George Rudinas, 4. Steve Galgano, 5. Robbie Konikowski, 6. Chris Chirico.
358/SPORTSMAN FEATURE FINISH (20 laps): 1. Jerry Curry, 2. Rich Coons, 3. Rick Mill, 4. Dan Dulin, 5. Greg Morgan, 6. Kyle Redner, 7. Kimberlee Morgan, 8. Charles Hummel, 9. John Cook, 10. Jeff Richardson, 11. Jackie Brown Jr. DNS – Paul Knox.
LEGENDS PRO/MASTERS/SEMI PRO FEATURE FINISH (20 laps): 1. Joseph Graf, 2. Brad Lowmaster, 3. Richie Coy, 4. Drew Bottge, 5. Joe Graf, 6. Eugene Drew, 7. Wayne Hajek, 8. Rob Rafferty, 9. Jim Sylvester, 10. Josh Andrews, 11. Paul Dodorico, 12. Jerry Sprague, 13. Mark Foster.
LEGENDS YOUNG LIONS FEATURE FINISH (20 laps): 1. Teddy Hodgdon, 2. Alex McCollum, 3. Andrew Molleur, 4. David French, 5. Gillian Kirkpatrick, 6. Jerry Macchia, 7. Nick Lizbinski.
BANDOLERO FEATURE FINISH (15 laps): 1. David French, 2. Lars McElravy, 3. Teddy Bowen, 4. Matt Addona, 5. Mike Roth, 6. Robby Gordon Douglas, 7. Jessica Ricci, 8. Bryan Chirico, 9. Jade McElravy, 10. Sean Verwys, 11. Eugene Drew.
BEGINNER BANDOLERO FEATURE FINISH (15 laps): 1. Conner Piasecki, 2. Joey Aungst, 3. Tyler Dachenhausen, 4. Katie Verwys, 5. Nick Archiere, 6. Jeff Darrah.
PRO STOCK FEATURE FINISH (15 laps): 1. Jim Helt, 2. Kenny Atkins, 3. Greg Cohen, 4. Rick Smith, 5. Kyle Welsch, 6. Vinny Stanton Sr., 7. Mac Crawson, 8. Steve Vasey, 9. Larry O’Donnell, 10. Clark Bradford, 11. Glenn Richard. DNS – Rick Bradley.
STREET STOCK FEATURE FINISH (25 laps): 1. Gary VanOrden, 2. Walt Henry, 3. Amber VanOrden, 4. Vinny Stanton Jr., 5. Steve Smalley, 6. John Hager, 7. Patty Falkena.
4 CYLINDER ADVANCED FEATURE FINISH (20 laps): 1. Brian Baurnfeind, 2. Tasha Curry, 3. Dan Curry, 4. Joe Morris, 5. Mike Travis, 6. Cody Houghtaling, 7. Jerry Kingeter, 8. Brent Shaddock, 9. George VanAken, 10. Joe Wilson, 11. Robert Clarke. DQ – Joe Smith.
4 CYLINDER NOVICE HOLDOVER FEATURE FINISH (20 laps): 1. Lee Cogswell, 2. Ryan LaMantia, 3. Brittany Curry, 4. David Donovan, 5. James Curry, 6. Dan Houghtaling, 7. John Houghtaling, 8. Travis Cogswell, 9. Dan Bryant, 10. Felicia Reichenbaugh, 11. Jessey Torrens, 12. Charlie Reichenbaugh, 13. Heather Porter, 14. Marisol Torres, 15. James Sweeney.
4 CYLINDER NOVICE FEATURE FINISH (20 laps): 1. Ryan LaMantia, 2. David Donovan, 3. Travis Cogswell, 4. John Houghtaling, 5. Dan Bryant, 6. Lee Cogswell, 7. Brittany Curry, 8. Austin Zweck, 9. James Curry, 10. Dan Houghtaling, 11. Troy Morris. DNS – Newt Jackson, Charlie Reichenbaugh.