Must See Racing at Anderson Speedway August 11th
Gerster Romps From 10th In Must See Thriller At Owosso
PHOTO CREDITS: Chris Seelman
OVID, Mich. – Brian Gerster was the fourth and final leader in a barnburner Must See Racing Sprint Car Series feature on Saturday night, holding off archrival Jimmy McCune to win the Laura Devlin Memorial Fast Forty at Owosso Speedway.
Gerster, who set fast time in qualifying, had to start 10th on the grid after the inversion but powered through traffic to take the lead by lap eight. He then held off a hard-charging McCune, who came from last after spinning on the initial start, in the final laps to secure his second series win of the season.
An exuberant victory lane celebration – completed with a wing dance by the Fishers, Ind., driver and two-time series champion – capped off Gerster's 21st career Must See Racing victory.
"We came up on some lapped traffic right at the end, and to be honest I was probably trying to run the car a little bit too hard," Gerster said. "We were getting a little bit free ... so much so that I drove off the end of the backstraightaway one lap. I knew the 88 (Jimmy McCune) would be coming. I'm not a fan of moving the lapped cars to the rear (on restarts), but we were able to nail the restart and pull away.
"The McCunes have been faster than we have been the last half a dozen times we've run here, so we came in here trying not to get our butts kicked and to come away with a trophy feels really good."
Saturday also marked the eighth consecutive season that Gerster has won multiple Must See Racing features.
"That's something that's a really big deal to us," noted Gerster. "It's nice to keep the streak alive and keep pushing that mark forward. It's hard to do in this field and to accomplish that means a lot."
Following the inversion roll, Adam Biltz and Tom Jewell led the field to the green flag, but contact off turn two back in the field sent McCune spinning to the bottom of the second turn and turned the caution lights on almost instantly.
The incident set up a complete restart, with Biltz nailing the start and leading the first lap of his Must See Racing career before giving way to Jewell on the second revolution. Jewell then paced the next two circuits before Biltz's teammate, Charlie Schultz, charged to the inside of turn four to assume command on lap four.
By that point, Gerster had worked his way up to fourth, quickly dispatching Jewell and Ike Beasley on the next two laps before setting his sights on Schultz for the top spot.
It only took one more rotation before Gerster was on Schultz's tail tank and the eighth time by the flagstand, he was inside Schultz's No. 9s and edging ahead at the start/finish line to take the point.
After that, Gerster led the final 43 laps en route to victory, though it wasn't without challenge in the final laps.
McCune got to second in 15 laps, but couldn't erase a three-second deficit to Gerster until a caution for a slowing Jeff Bloom with 17 to go gave the three-time defending series champion new life.
The ensuing restart put McCune on Gerster's tail tank, but even still, it wasn't until inside of five laps to go that McCune was able to pounce and close in on the 'Mopar Missile'.
As Gerster got swallowed up in slower traffic, McCune was able to cut a second and a half gap down into car lengths at the white flag, making one last-ditch effort in turn three coming to the finish line but falling .215 of a second short in the end.
"I don't know if he heard me or saw me, but he was running the high line and I was down low ... and he just did what he had to do and cut my pursuit off coming off (turn) four," lamented McCune. "Maybe if we'd had another couple of laps we could have gotten him, but I'm just disappointed that we had such a good start, only to have it wiped out by getting turned around there. Just didn't have enough tonight."
Twenty-year-old Anthony McCune completed the podium in third after making contact with the wall on lap two and having to rally from as low as 10th. Jason Blonde and Ike Beasley were fourth and fifth.
Schultz, Doug Dietsch, Jerry Caryer, Jewell and Biltz completed the top 10 at the finish.
Gerster became the seventh different fast qualifier in nine races during time trials at the start of the night, earning his 27th career fast time with a lap of 13.439 seconds (100.454 mph) around the three-eighths-mile oval. Jewell and Anthony McCune won their respective heat races.
The Must See Racing Sprint Car Series returns to action on Aug. 11 with the Must See Racing 50 from Indiana's Anderson Speedway. Jimmy McCune is the defending event winner.
RACE RESULTS: Must See Racing Sprint Car Series; Owosso Speedway; Aug. 4, 2018
1-800-RADIATOR/Laura Devlin Memorial A-Feature (40 laps): 1. #50m – Brian Gerster ; 2. #88 – Jimmy McCune ; 3. #8 – Anthony McCune ; 4. #42 – Jason Blonde ; 5. #97 – Ike Beasley ; 6. #9s – Charlie Schultz ; 7. #0 – Doug Dietsch ; 8. #75c – Jerry Caryer ; 9. #7 – Tom Jewell ; 10. #8a – Adam Biltz ; 11. #5 – Don Dietsch ; 12. #11 – Tom Geren ; 13. #26b – Jeff Bloom .
Lap Leader(s): Biltz 1, Jewell 2-3, Schultz 4-7, Gerster 8-50.
Hard Charger: #50m – Brian Gerster (+9)
Hamilton Trucking Time Trials (best of two laps): 1. #50m – Brian Gerster, 13.439; 2. #88 – Jimmy McCune, 13.449; 3. #8 – Anthony McCune, 13.467; 4. #42 – Jason Blonde, 14.595; 5. #97 – Ike Beasley, 13.618; 6. #26b – Jeff Bloom, 13.721; 7. #9s – Charlie Schultz, 13.740; 8. #75c – Jerry Caryer, 13.979; 9. #7 – Tom Jewell, 14.011; 10. #8a – Adam Biltz, 14.227; 11. #0 – Doug Dietsch, 14.326; 12. #11 – Tom Geren, 14.749; 13. #5 – Don Dietsch, 14.923.
Abe's Auto Parts Heat #1 (8 laps): 1. Tom Jewell, 2. Charlie Schultz, 3. Jerry Caryer, 4. Doug Dietsch, 5. Adam Biltz, 6. Don Dietsch, 7. Tom Geren.
Abe's Auto Parts Heat #2 (8 laps): 1. Anthony McCune, 2. Jimmy McCune, 3. Brian Gerster, 4. Ike Beasley, 5. Jason Blonde, 6. Jeff Bloom.
Series Announcer for Must See Racing
Gerster Speeds To 27th Career Must See Racing Fast Time
PHOTO CREDIT: Chris Seelman
OVID, Mich. – Brian Gerster extended his all-time qualifying lead with the Must See Racing Sprint Car Series by topping Hamilton Trucking Time Trials for the Laura Devlin Memorial Fast Forty at Owosso Speedway on Saturday evening.
Gerster was only third-quick in practice during the heat of the day, but as the sun started to dip down his No. 50m Dick Myers Racing sprint car came to life. The Fishers, Ind., native and two-time series champion toured the three-eighths-mile oval in 13.439 seconds (100.454 mph) to top the 13-car field.
Saturday's effort earned Gerster a $100 bonus and marked the 27th fast time of his Must See Racing career.
Three-time defending series titlist and Gerster's long-time rival, Jimmy McCune, was second-quick and just a hundredth of a second off the pole time. McCune turned a lap of 13.449 seconds (100.379 mph) in the No. 88 Abe's Auto Parts & Sales/B&B Machinery Movers/Rev-X Oil entry.
Right on the two veterans' heels was 20-year-old Anthony McCune, the nephew of Jimmy McCune and the 2015 series Rookie of the Year. The youngest driver in the field posted a time of 13.467 seconds (100.245 mph) in the No. 8 Abe's Auto Parts & Sales/B&B Machinery Movers/Rev-X Oil machine.
The top three qualifiers were separated by less than a half-tenth of a second on the stopwatch.
Jason Blonde, looking for his first Must See Racing win since May of 2017, and Ike Beasley completed the Fast Five in qualifying.
Sixth through 10th were Jeff Bloom, Charlie Schultz, Jerry Caryer, Tom Jewell and Adam Biltz.
Racing action for the Open Wheel Mania program at Owosso Speedway is slated for a 7 p.m. kickoff.
QUALIFYING RESULTS: Must See Racing Sprint Car Series; Owosso Speedway; Aug. 4, 2018
- #50m – Brian Gerster, 13.439
2. #88 – Jimmy McCune, 13.449
3. #8 – Anthony McCune, 13.467
4. #42 – Jason Blonde, 14.595
5. #97 – Ike Beasley, 13.618
6. #26b – Jeff Bloom, 13.721
7. #9s – Charlie Schultz, 13.740
8. #75c – Jerry Caryer, 13.979
9. #7 – Tom Jewell, 14.011
10. #8a – Adam Biltz, 14.227
11. #0 – Doug Dietsch, 14.326
12. #11 – Tom Geren, 14.749
13. #5 – Don Dietsch, 14.923
Series Announcer for Must See Racing
Laura Devlin To Be Remembered During Must See Stop At Owosso
PHOTO CREDIT: Chris Seelman
OVID, Mich. – Saturday's Must See Racing Sprint Car Series stop at Owosso Speedway will be about more than just the racing on the track.
It will also be about honoring the life of a long-time contributor to Michigan motorsports who tragically passed away earlier in the year.
Laura Devlin, a past board member for the Michigan Motorsports Hall of Fame and a long-time friend to the Must See Racing Sprint Car Series, died in April at the age of 81 after suffering burns during a tragic house fire. She and her late husband, Neal, fielded a sprint car for 2005 MMSHoF inductee Harold Reynolds, with whom the Devlins scored most of their victories as car owners in 1975 and 1976 at Kalamazoo (Mich.) Speedway.
Though she retired years ago from team involvement, Devlin had spent time over the past several years in the Must See Racing pit area aiding teams whenever possible, including National Sprint Car Hall of Famer Jeff Bloom.
In honor of her involvement with the series and in Michigan auto racing, the Must See Racing portion of Saturday's event at Owosso Speedway – just an hour west from Devlin's home in Ortonville, Mich. – will be billed as the Laura Devlin Memorial Fast Forty.
She will also be honored during the Michigan Motorsports Hall of Fame induction ceremony on Nov. 4.
"Upon joining the Board of Directors of the Michigan Motorsports Hall of Fame nearly 30 years ago, Laura was one of several who graciously welcomed me into the organization," said past MMSHoF president Dan Van Koevering. "Her kindness, generosity, and encouragement was always deeply appreciated by me. Even after she resigned her position as a board member, she continued to support the Hall of Fame and often attended our yearly induction ceremony and banquet. I will miss this special lady's sincerity and enthusiasm for the sport she dearly loved and supported."
"Laura Devlin was one of the most dedicated people in auto racing that I've ever met," added National Speedway Directory's Allan Brown. "It was a pleasure to call her friend for more than 40 years. She was always present with a smile and hug for my wife and myself. She will definitely be missed."
Devlin's two children, Karen and Doug, will be among several family members in attendance during Saturday's proceedings and will help to present the winner's trophy on the frontstretch following the Must See Racing feature.
Three-time defending series champion Jimmy McCune will lead the Must See Racing charge back into Owosso, leading his 20-year-old nephew Anthony McCune and former supermodified ace Charlie Schultz in the championship standings entering the ninth race of the season.
Former Owosso winner Jason Blonde, Anthony McCune, Tom Jewell, National Sprint Car Hall of Famer Jeff Bloom and fellow series regulars Jerry Caryer and Adam Biltz are expected to compete as well.
Saturday's Must See Racing event is part of Owosso Speedway's Open Wheel Mania event, with the Illini Midgets joining 'The World's Fastest Short Track Cars' on the four-division card.
Pit gates open at noon, with hot laps kicking off at 2 p.m., qualifying taking the green flag at 5 p.m. and racing beginning at 7 p.m.
For more information on the Must See Racing Sprint Car Series, visit www.mustseeracing.com.
Series Announcer for Must See Racing
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